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Feb 1, 2016

The Coming Era of Virtual Reality

Posted by in categories: augmented reality, disruptive technology, entertainment, innovation, thought controlled, virtual reality

A Lifeboat guest editorial

Richelle Ross-sRichelle Ross is a sophomore at the University of Florida, focusing on statistics and data science. As a crypto consultant, she educates far beyond the campus. Her insight on the evolution and future of Bitcoin has been featured in national publications. Richelle writes for CoinDesk, LinkedIn, and Quora, providing analysis on Bitcoin’s evolving economy.

In 2003, I remember going to see my first IMAX 3D film,
Space Station . My family was touring NASA at Cape Canaveral Florida. The film was an inside view into life as an astronaut enters space. As the astronauts tossed M&Ms to each other in their new gravity-free domain, the other children and space_station_1I gleefully reached our hands out to try and touch the candy as it floated towards us. I had never experienced anything so mind-blowing in my 7 year life. The first 3D film was released in 1922. Yet, surprisingly, flat entertainment has dominated screens for in the 9½ decades that followed. Only a handful of films have been released in 3D—most of them are animated. But now, we are gradually seeing a shift in how people experience entertainment. As methods evolve and as market momentum builds, it promises to be one of the most groundbreaking technologies of the decade. I foresee Virtual Reality reaching a point where our perception of virtual and real-life experiences becomes blurred—and eventually—the two become integrated.

Ever since pen was put to paper, and camera to screen, audiences have enjoyed being swept into other worlds. For those of us “dreamers” being able to escape into these stories is one way we live through and expand our understanding of other times and places—even places space_station_2that may not be accessible in our lifetimes. Virtual reality is the logical progression and natural evolution of these experiences.

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Feb 1, 2016

In 2014

Posted by in category: futurism

In 2014, Twitter stated that nearly 1 in 10 of its accounts are controlled by “bots” that generate automatic tweets for purposes ranging from innocuous to potentially harmful. Recently, DARPA ran a competition to find Twitter bots designed to influence online debates, and the outcome was a fundamental shift in anti-bot strategies.

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Feb 1, 2016

Physicists investigate the structure of time, with implications for quantum mechanics and philosophy

Posted by in category: quantum physics

(—Although in theory it may seem possible to divide time up into infinitely tiny intervals, the smallest physically meaningful interval of time is widely considered to be the Planck time, which is approximately 10-43 seconds. This ultimate limit means that it is not possible for two events to be separated by a time smaller than this.

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Feb 1, 2016

Is dark matter subatomic particles, a superfluid, or both?

Posted by in categories: cosmology, particle physics, quantum physics

The superfluid Universe.

Quantum effects are not just subatomic: they can be expressed across galaxies, and solve the puzzle of dark matter.

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Feb 1, 2016

Russia developing mind-controlled ‘exoskeletons’ for its soldiers | Latest News | Breaking UK News & World News Headlines | Daily Star

Posted by in categories: cyborgs, military, neuroscience

Russia’s new mind control exoskeleton.

THE era of the ‘robo-soldier’ is nearing as Russia claims to be perfecting machines that will revolutionise warfare.

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Feb 1, 2016

The 9 Lives of the Dreamer & Maker: Phillipe Bojorquez

Posted by in categories: bioengineering, lifeboat, robotics/AI

I gave an interview for a queer people of interest blog and plugged the lifeboat foundation. Thought I would share the information here.

Phillipe Bojorquez is an engineer, activist, and artist: He has been described as “a futurist with a community minded bent.” He is a engineer, with experience at First Dibs, Samsung, Boxee, and Canary. He is a board member of The Lifeboat Foundation, an independent research group dedicated to helping humanity survive the risks posed by new technologies. His research areas include artificial intelligence, robotics, engineering, and philosophy. Bojorquez is a past board member of CRUX, NYC’s LGBT rock climbing organization, and an early contributor and organizer of Vegans in Vegas, a yearly gathering of activists and entrepreneurs at the forefront of nutrition and sustainability.

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Feb 1, 2016

Is Harm to a Prosthetic Limb Property Damage or Personal Injury?

Posted by in categories: biotech/medical, cyborgs, law

Oxford researchers suggest the law might have to reassess what it considers person and property.

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Feb 1, 2016

Less jitter, more bits: new material for detecting photons captures more quantum information

Posted by in categories: materials, nanotechnology, particle physics, quantum physics

Transport Quantum bits via superconducting nanowires. Definite step forward in information transmittal capabilities.

Although 74 picoseconds may not sound like much — a picosecond is a trillionth of a second — it is a big deal in the quantum world, where light particles, or photons, can carry valuable information. In this case it means that much less “jitter,” or uncertainty in the arrival time of a photon. Less jitter means that photons can be spaced more closely together but still be correctly detected. This enables communications at a higher bit rate, with more information transmitted in the same period.

Every little bit helps when trying to receive faint signals reliably. It helped, for example, in NIST’s recent quantum teleportation record and difficult tests of physics theories. In such experiments, researchers want to decode as much information as possible from the quantum properties of billions of photons, or determine if “entangled” photons have properties that are linked before — or only after — being measured.

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Feb 1, 2016

Advanced composites — An idealized future

Posted by in categories: computing, transportation

DARPA Futurist’s visions of the future: non breakable parts and improving energy usage. Interesting, we both had worked at the National Labs.

Although we’re still awaiting the mass production of flying cars and miniature fusion reactors, some predictions in the 1985 film Back to the Future for 2015 have, indeed, come true. Among them are in-home videoconferencing and voice and fingerprint recognition for personal devices.

On the 30th anniversary of the movie, the US Defense Advanced Research Projects Agency (DARPA) issued some predictions about the world in 2045. Some of them seem pretty far-fetched (click here for a look), but given the pace of technological development, they might be realized much sooner. So, what would an idealized future for the advanced composites industry look like? And rather than looking out 30 years, how about the next 10 to 20? Here are some of my thoughts:

“Make it and break it” is a thing of the past. Today’s “building block” approach to composites, from coupon level to full structures, is both time-consuming and expensive. As computing power evolves, the necessity to fabricate and test thousands of coupons to derive design allowables goes away. Instead, we manufacture a modest set of critical panels and measure a handful of mechanical properties, and use proven and reliable mathematical models to accurately predict the remaining design properties, called “virtual allowables.” Most important, we believe in them. From these, we are able to predict behavior of as-manufactured components and assemblies in impact, crash, fatigue and other potential failure modes, leading us to design parts at minimum weight and cost. We also characterize the rheology of the various polymers in composites, as well as forming behavior of fibers and textile forms to confidently simulate composite manufacturing processes.

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Feb 1, 2016

A Budget Exoskeleton Allows Paraplegics To Walk–For The Price Of A Car

Posted by in categories: biotech/medical, cyborgs, robotics/AI, transportation

The Phoenix lets paraplegic people sit, stand, and walk. It costs just $40,000. Here’s how the designers pulled it off.

In 2005, Steven Sanchez was trying to do a flip off a BMX dirt ramp when he was paralyzed from the belly button down. 11 years later, with no miracle surgery to speak of, he stands like any other tourist in line at the Vatican.

“I had this awesome robotic suit on, and nobody cared,” he says. “They just waited for me to move up like everyone else moved up.” It was a moment of incredible, touristy normalcy, provided by a bit of practice—and the Phoenix exoskeleton.

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