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Jan 27, 2023

I Edited Human DNA at Home With a DIY CRISPR Kit

Posted by in categories: bioengineering, biotech/medical, genetics

I never thought I’d order live human kidney cells to my address, but that all changed when I found out about biohacker Jo Zayner’s at-home genetic engineering class.

You may know Jo Zayner, a “biohacker” who has been in the vanguard of scientific self-experimentation for years, from their role in Netflix’s 2019 docuseries Unnatural Selection. The series shows Zayner attempting to edit their DNA by injecting themselves with CRISPR, a gene-editing technology. The action inspired a firestorm of criticism.

Zayner is also known for a variety of other bold moves, such as claiming to create a DIY at-home COVID vaccine in 2020 and executing their own fecal microbiome transplant.

Jan 27, 2023

Elon Musk kills hope of Tesla retrofitting new Autopilot/Self-Driving hardware

Posted by in categories: Elon Musk, robotics/AI, transportation

Elon Musk has killed the little hope some had for Tesla in offering a retrofit to the new Autopilot/Self-Driving hardware (HW4) to current Tesla owners.

Tesla is expected to announce a new Autopilot/Self-Driving hardware suite, which has been referred to as Hardware 4.0 (HW4), any day now.

There have been quite a few indications that some major changes are coming. For example, after famously removing radar sensors from its hardware suite, we learned in December that Tesla is planning to add one as soon as this month.

Continue reading “Elon Musk kills hope of Tesla retrofitting new Autopilot/Self-Driving hardware” »

Jan 27, 2023

Humans Have Degraded More Than A Third Of The Amazon Rainforest, Researchers Say

Posted by in category: futurism

More than one-third of the Amazon rainforest has been degraded by humans, according to a study published Thursday in the journal Science.

Degradation is different from deforestation, the researchers note, as it represents long-term changes in forest conditions that damages its ecosystem and results in carbon emissions greater to those from deforestation.

New estimates are larger than what scientists previously believed.

Continue reading “Humans Have Degraded More Than A Third Of The Amazon Rainforest, Researchers Say” »

Jan 27, 2023

Google created an AI that can generate music from text descriptions, but won’t release it

Posted by in categories: media & arts, robotics/AI

An impressive new AI system from Google can generate music in any genre given a text description. But the company, fearing the risks, has no immediate plans to release it.

Called MusicLM, Google’s certainly isn’t the first generative AI system for song. There have been other attempts, including Riffusion, an AI that composes music by visualizing it, as well as Dance Diffusion, Google’s own AudioML and OpenAI’s Jukebox. But owing to technical limitations and limited training data, none have been able to produce songs particularly complex in composition or high-fidelity.

MusicLM is perhaps the first that can.

Continue reading “Google created an AI that can generate music from text descriptions, but won’t release it” »

Jan 27, 2023

Chrome for Android now lets you lock your incognito session

Posted by in categories: privacy, robotics/AI, security

Chrome is rolling out an update for Android users that lets them lock their incognito sessions with a password code or biometric info when they exit the app. The feature has been available for iOS users for some time, but now it’s being made available to folks using Chrome on Android.

Users can activate this feature by going to Chrome Settings Privacy & Security and turning on the “Lock incognito tabs when you close Chrome” toggle. So next time when a user exits Chrome, their incognito session will automatically be locked. To unlock the incognito tabs, you can use the biometric unlock on the phone such as a fingerprint unlock or lock code.

Jan 27, 2023

Daniel C. Dennett — What is Consciousness?

Posted by in category: neuroscience

Consciousness is what we can know best and explain least. It is the inner subjective experience of what it feels like to see red or smell garlic or hear Beethoven. Consciousness has intrigued and baffled philosophers. To begin, we must define and describe consciousness. What to include in a complete definition and description of consciousness?

Free access to Closer to Truth’s library of 5,000 videos:

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Jan 27, 2023

Scientists Make Star Trek Technology Real With A Working Tractor Beam

Posted by in categories: nanotechnology, particle physics, tractor beam

Scientists how now developed a mini tractor beam that can pull atoms and nanoparticles. Scientists have built a real working tractor beam, albeit at a very small scale. The device, which attracts one object to another from a distance, originates in fiction. The term was coined by E. E. Smith who mentioned the technology in his 1931 novel Spacehounds of IPC, and since the 1990s, researchers have worked to make it a reality.

Jan 27, 2023

Scientists Made A Robot With Organic Muscles

Posted by in category: robotics/AI

Scientists have created skin for an organic robot that reacts to light and tightens when the robot walks. If you have seen any science fiction movies in your life, the term “organic robot” surely fills you with a mixture of curiosity and alarm (if not outright terror).

Jan 27, 2023

NASA and DARPA want to build a nuclear-powered spaceship

Posted by in categories: nuclear energy, space travel

The rocket could have its first test in orbit “as soon as 2027.”

Jan 27, 2023

European farms mix things up to guard against food-supply shocks

Posted by in categories: biotech/medical, climatology, economics, sustainability

Greater diversification could help agriculture withstand climate, economic and geopolitical crises.

“Items in this section have limited availability due to supplier production issues,” “Sorry, temporarily out of stock” and “Sold out” are all signs that became familiar as recent global upheavals exposed how precarious our food supply is.

The COVID-19 pandemic led to bare shelves in supermarkets as shipping routes were cut off. The war in Ukraine has affected the supply of essential grains.

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