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Apr 11, 2015

Scientists close in on computers that work like the human brain

Posted by in categories: computing, robotics/AI

By — GizmagScientists close in on computers that work like the human brainScientists have been working since 2008 to develop technology based on memristors (short for memory resistors), which promise computers that need never boot up and function more akin to the human brain – like neurons, they can retain information and perform logic operations. Now scientists at Northwestern University have made a new breakthrough that may make possible brain-like computing capabilities.

Memristors are considered exciting for more than their potential to create brain-like computers. Unlike flash memory, they’re fast. Unlike random access memory (RAM), they remember their state – whatever information they held – when they lose power. They also require less energy to operate, rarely crash, and are immune to radiation. The trouble is that they are two-terminal electronic devices, which results in them being tunable only through changes in the voltage applied externally. Read more

Apr 10, 2015

Watch the First Artificial Gravity Experiment

Posted by in categories: gravity, space

By Caleb A. Scharf — Scientific American
Gravity, as the old joke goes, sucks.

It drags us down, pulls on our weary limbs, makes our feet tired, makes parts of us droop. But it’s also a critical factor for our long term well-being. Astronauts and cosmonauts circling the Earth over the past 60 years have discovered that zero-g, or microgravity, is really not very good for you. Read more

Apr 10, 2015

The Science of Cryodynamics proved that there was no Big Bang: Why create one on Earth?

Posted by in categories: existential risks, particle physics

There are quite a few publications on cryodynamics in refereed journals since 2011. Cryodynamics is the sister discipline to thermodynamics and is crucial for the control of sustained hot fusion in Tokamak reactors. So it has become the basic science for an energy-thirsty planet. As a side effect, cryodynamics proved Zwicky’s “tired light” hypothesis correct. So there was no Big Bang.

CERN, however, tries to create the first Big Bang on earth. Why is no one asking it to first renew its by 7 years outdated “Safety Report”?

I append a link to the first paper on cryodynamics:

Apr 10, 2015

Virtual nose keeps gamers from feeling sick

Posted by in category: virtual reality

by — Futurityman wears virtual reality glasses
Simulator sickness—which often induces vertigo and even nausea—often afflicts players of virtual reality games, but inserting a “virtual nose” into the picture may be a way to lessen the queasiness.

Various physiological systems govern the onset of simulator sickness: an overall sense of touch and position, or the somatosensory system; liquid-filled tubes in the ear called the vestibular system; and the oculumotor system, or muscles that control eye movements.

“Simulator sickness is very common,” says David Whittinghill, assistant professor in the computer graphics technology department at Purdue University. “The problem is your perceptual system does not like it when the motion of your body and your visual system are out of synch. Read more

Apr 9, 2015

Bitcoin Value In The Doldrums

Posted by in category: bitcoin

Venzen Khaosan — CryptoCoins News
There is not much to say about the current price action. The correctional waves are not establishing new highs or lows and “corrective” is the only description.

We’ll have to wait for a decisive move to show some internal wave structure (three or five waves) and to expand on the existing waves in the chart.

It is not clear if price is correcting prior to making another push higher or if these are the initial waves prior to a move back to the yellow trendline, below. Read more

Apr 9, 2015

How Can Black Holes Shine?

Posted by in category: space

— Universe Today
I remember back to a classic episode of the Guide to Space, where I provided an extremely fascinating and concise explanation for what a quasar is. Don’t recall that episode? Well, it was super. Just super. Alright slackers, let’s recap.

Quasars are the brightest objects in the Universe, visible across billions of light years. Likely blanching life from everything in the path of the radiation beam from its lighthouse of death. They occur when a supermassive black hole is actively feeding on material, pouring out a mountain of radiation. Black holes, of course, are regions of space with such intense gravity where nothing, not even light itself, can escape. Read more

Apr 8, 2015

Despite its looks, this 3D printed violin (probably) won’t kill you

Posted by in category: 3D printing

— Endgadget

It might not be a Stradivarius, but the violin you see above is pretty impressive on its own merits. For starters, it’s 3D printed and only has two strings. And that’s to say nothing of its appearance; this thing looks like it’d be right at home on The Citadel in Mass Effect. The Piezoelectric Violin (as it’s officially called), was concepted by a pair of architects who tell BBC that the impetus for its creation was realizing that the challenges of their day jobs aren’t all that different from those faced by composers and musicians. It’s still playable by “anyone” too, despite its wild looks. One of its designers tells BBC that the difference between how it and a traditional violin sounds is akin to that of a classical guitar versus an electric Gibson Les Paul. That is, similar, but still pretty different. Read more

Apr 8, 2015

Which Industry Will Produce the Next Henry Ford…Space? 3D Printing? Biotech?

Posted by in categories: futurism, human trajectories, innovation

By — SingularityHub

Modern machines, powerful and clever, have enabled us to attempt seemingly impossible tasks, like traveling to the moon. Now, mere decades after Apollo’s computers guided us to the lunar surface, millions carry vastly more processing power in their pockets. What once seemed science fiction—it’s possible today.

The incredible acceleration and exponential development of machines is driven by our unsatisfiable curiosity and constant drive for progress. And there is little doubt the rate of change will continue as our curious minds push into the unknown. Read more

Apr 7, 2015

Terminator draws closer with shape-shifting liquid metal motor

Posted by in categories: chemistry, engineering, materials, Skynet

by — C/net
There are some concepts from sci-fi that really should never, ever see the light of day. The T-1000 — the murderous robot made of shifting liquid metal — is arguably one of them, but that doesn’t mean it doesn’t exhibit some interesting ideas, even if they do seem impossible.

Seem, of course, being the operative word — because researchers in China have just created the world’s first liquid metal robot that can both change shape and power itself.

“The soft machine looks rather intelligent and [can] deform itself according to the space it voyages in, just like [the] Terminator does from the science-fiction film,” Jing Liu from Tsinghua University in Beijing, China, told New Scientist. “These unusual behaviours perfectly resemble the living organisms in nature.” Read more

Apr 7, 2015

The Internet doesn’t make you smarter; you only think it does

Posted by in category: internet

by — ARS Technica

If you’ve ever lived with roommates, chances are you shared a “transactive” memory system with them. One person might have remembered to pay the bills, while another knew the contact details of the plumber. It’s common to find social systems that share the information needed by a group across all the members of that group. Systems like these make life easier for individuals, who need only keep track of who knows which nugget.

Transactive memory systems are a common feature of human social groups, but they can be technological, too—and in the case of the Internet, the relationship can be a pretty powerful one. There are already indications that we treat the Internet like a transactive memory partner, remembering only where to find information, rather than the content itself. But could we also be blurring the boundary between our own internal knowledge and the easily accessed knowledge available via search engines? A group of researchers at Yale University think that we are. Read more