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Jan 29, 2016

‘Aipoly Vision’ AI app opens up the world live for visually impaired

Posted by in categories: education, mobile phones, robotics/AI

This just in: Aipoly Vision* — a free AI app that runs on your iPhone/iPad** (Android coming) and recognizes objects and colors — is now live on the App store, Aipoly Inc. co-founder Alberto Rizzoli just told me in an email.

Of course, I immediately downloaded the app, launched it on my iPhone 6s+, and tested it. It works spectacularly. Its voice names objects or colors in real time as a walk around and also displays objects’ names. I am blown away. Here’s a sample:

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Jan 29, 2016

Ray Kurzweil reflects on the death of Marvin Minsky

Posted by in categories: Ray Kurzweil, robotics/AI

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Jan 29, 2016

Two-photon quantum walk in a multimode fiber

Posted by in category: quantum physics

Laboratoire Kastler Brossel, ENS-PSL Research University, CNRS, UPMC-Sorbonne Universités, Collège de France, 24 rue Lhomond, F-75005 Paris, France.

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Jan 29, 2016

France to pave 1,000km of road with solar panels

Posted by in categories: solar power, sustainability

Not mentioned is that the roads become easier to replace instead of having to repave them.


The minister told a conference of transport authorities last week that the tenders for the “Positive Energy” initiative had already been issued and the tests on the panels would begin in the spring.

According to France’s Agency of Environment and Energy Management, 4m of solarised road is enough to supply one household’s electricity needs, apart from heating, and one kilometre will light a settlement with 5,000 inhabitants.

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Jan 29, 2016

New Technique Allows Scientists to Read Minds at Nearly the Speed of Thought

Posted by in categories: biotech/medical, computing, neuroscience

An experiment by University of Washington researchers is setting the stage for advances in mind reading technology. Using brain implants and sophisticated software, researchers can now predict what their subjects are seeing with startling speed and accuracy.

The ability to view a two-dimensional image on a page or computer screen, and then transform that image into something our minds can immediately recognize, is a neurological process that remains mysterious to scientists. To learn more about how our brains perform this task—and to see if computers can collect and predict what a person is seeing in real time—a research team led by University of Washington neuroscientist Rajesh Rao and neurosurgeon Jeff Ojermann demonstrated that it’s possible to decode human brain signals at nearly the speed of perception. The details of their work can be found in a new paper in PLOS Computational Biology.

The team sought the assistance of seven patients undergoing treatment for epilepsy. Medications weren’t helping alleviate their seizures, so these patients were given temporary brain implants, and electrodes were used to pinpoint the focal points of their seizures. The UW researchers saw this as an opportunity to perform their experiment. “They were going to get the electrodes no matter what,” noted Ojermann in a UW NewsBeat article. “We were just giving them additional tasks to do during their hospital stay while they are otherwise just waiting around.”

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Jan 29, 2016

New acoustic-tweezer design allows for 3D bioprinting

Posted by in category: particle physics

Illustration of a particle (red sphere) trapped by the 3D trapping node created by two superimposed, orthogonal (at right angles), standing surface acoustic waves and induced acoustic streaming (credit: Carnegie Mellon University)

A team of researchers at three universities has developed a way to use “acoustic tweezers” (which use ultrasonic surface acoustic waves, or SAWs, to trap and manipulate micrometer-scale particles and biological cells — see “Acoustic tweezers manipulate cellular-scale objects with ultrasound “) to non-invasively pick up and move single cells in three mutually orthogonal axes of motion (three dimensions).

The new 3D acoustic tweezers can pick up single cells or entire cell assemblies and deliver them to desired locations to create 2D and 3D cell patterns, or print the cells into complex shapes — a promising new method for “3D bioprinting” in biological tissues, the researchers say in an open-access paper in the Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences (PNAS).

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Jan 29, 2016

Your Next iPhone Might Not Have To Be Plugged In To Anything, Ever

Posted by in category: mobile phones

Freedom!

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Jan 29, 2016

Tesla’s home battery is finally rolling out. First stop: Australia

Posted by in categories: habitats, solar power, sustainability

According to Nick Pfitzner, the Tesla Powerwall is “a thing of beauty.”

Pfitzner, who lives in Sydney’s Hills District, was one of the first homeowners in Australia to have the highly anticipated energy storage battery installed at his home on Thursday.

Tesla announced in September it would be bringing the Powerwall to Australia, with a spokesperson telling Mashable Australia the country had been “prioritised as a market” due to its high number of solar energy users.

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Jan 29, 2016

Graphene shown to safely interact with neurons in the brain

Posted by in categories: biotech/medical, materials, neuroscience

Researchers have successfully demonstrated how it is possible to interface graphene — a two-dimensional form of carbon — with neurons, or nerve cells, while maintaining the integrity of these vital cells. The work may be used to build graphene-based electrodes that can safely be implanted in the brain, offering promise for the restoration of sensory functions for amputee or paralysed patients, or for individuals with motor disorders such as epilepsy or Parkinson’s disease.

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Jan 29, 2016

USENIX Enigma 2016 — NSA TAO Chief on Disrupting Nation State Hackers

Posted by in categories: habitats, privacy, security

Rob Joyce, Chief, Tailored Access Operations, National Security Agency.

From his role as the Chief of NSA’s Tailored Access Operation, home of the hackers at NSA, Mr. Joyce will talk about the security practices and capabilities that most effectively frustrate people seeking to exploit networks.

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