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Apr 8, 2016

Video: Humans Could Engineer Themselves for Long-Term Space Travel

Posted by in categories: bioengineering, biological, genetics, space

Humans may need to genetically engineer themselves to withstand the harsh and unpredictable environments encountered during long-term space travel, one researcher says.

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Apr 8, 2016

SCHAFT Unveils Awesome New Bipedal Robot at Japan Conference

Posted by in category: robotics/AI

Out of nowhere, at a conference in Japan today, SCHAFT demoed a new bipedal robot designed to “help society”.

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Apr 8, 2016

Do we live in a computer simulation?

Posted by in category: computing

Since today everybody is debating the question whether we live in a computer simulation, here is why I think Bostrom’s simulation argument is wrong:

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Apr 8, 2016

Microsoft Is Developing a New JARVIS-Like Artificial Intelligence System

Posted by in categories: mobile phones, robotics/AI

Just A Rather Very Intelligent System, or as it is more commonly known, JARVIS, is a highly advanced personal digital assistant. And it could be your best friend of tomorrow.

Among all of the fictional artificial intelligence (AI) systems, by far, the coolest one has to be Tony Stark’s JARVIS—It can not only control everything for Iron Man, it’s also a highly intuitive and sentient entity that has become part and parcel of his Tony Stark’s way of life.

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Apr 8, 2016

Overwatch | “Alive” Animated Short | PS4

Posted by in category: entertainment

Overwatch launches May 24, 2016 on PS4. Pre-order now to unlock early access to the Overwatch Open Beta for you and a friend starting May 3: http://bit.ly/1qlCYVO

“Alive” weaves a tale of Widowmaker, the peerless Talon assassin who stalks her prey with deadly efficiency. In this episode, we spend a fateful night in London’s King’s Row — where you’ll discover how one death can change everything.

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Apr 8, 2016

Meet Behrokh Khoshnevis, the Man Designing Robots to Build Colonies on Mars

Posted by in categories: energy, robotics/AI, space

When Khoshnevis imagines the future of colonies on Mars, he imagines very tall buildings, with a lot of protection from the elements.

“Gravity is one third of Earth’s, and therefore with less construction material we can build stronger structures out there, therefore we can build much taller,” he says. “The cost of energy for elevators and all that will be much less. Theoretically everything could be three times as high as here with the same consumption of energy,” he says.

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Apr 8, 2016

‘Groundbreaking’ Stem Cell Treatment Could Regrow Limbs, Repair Bones

Posted by in categories: biotech/medical, life extension

In the pages of comic books and on the silver screen, superheroes like Wolverine and Deadpool have a “healing factor” that allows their bodies to regenerate and recover from injuries or illness at an amazing rate – but certainly nothing like that is possible in real life, right?

Amazingly, a team of scientists led by John Pimanda, a hematologist and associate professor at the University of New South Wales in Australia, published a study in Monday’s edition of the journal PNAS reporting that they had successfully reprogrammed bone and fat cells into induced multipotent stem cells (iMS) – the first step to making such a repair system a reality.

As they explained in a statement, stem cell therapies using iMS cells could theoretically repair a fractured bone or fix injured spinal discs, using a technique similar to how salamanders are able to regenerate lost limbs. These treatments could radically alter the field of regenerative medicine, and perhaps most surprisingly, the authors believe they could be available in just a few years. The technique, which has been successfully tested in mice, “is a significant advance on many of the current unproven stem cell therapies, which have shown little or no objective evidence they contribute directly to new tissue formation,” Pimanda said.

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Apr 8, 2016

Imperial opens UK’s first synthetic-biology foundry

Posted by in categories: bioengineering, biotech/medical, robotics/AI

#SyntheticBiology: Robotic lab to custom-make synthetic bacteria.

Imperial College opens UK’s first robotic lab that automates the creation & rebooting of bacteria custom-made to produce pharmaceuticals and other materials. The robots will automate the synthesise of complete DNA strands, which consists millions of base pairs, and transplant entire genomes into bacteria chassis.

H/T: @CSERCambridge

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Apr 8, 2016

Student-designed ‘FemtoSats’ aim to bring cost of satellite deployment below $1,000

Posted by in categories: solar power, space, sustainability

Got a grand burning a hole in your pocket? You could get a new laptop — or you could send this tiny, palm-sized satellite to space. That’s what a team of engineers at Arizona State hope, anyway: their “FemtoSats” are meant to be as cheap a space-bound platform as has ever been devised.

At just 3cm per side and 35 grams (that’s about 1.2 inches and 0.077 pounds, dogs of the Imperial system), the SunCube 1F is the prototype FemtoSat. It’s powered by a salvaged scrap of solar panel (they don’t make them small enough off the shelf), the tiny unit includes propulsion, imaging, communication, and data collection.

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Apr 8, 2016

Why fossil fuel power plants will be left stranded — By Martin Wolf | Financial Times

Posted by in categories: business, disruptive technology, education, energy, environmental, governance, law, sustainability

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“Virtually all new fossil fuel-burning power-generation capacity will end up “stranded”. This is the argument of a paper by academics at Oxford university. We have grown used to the idea that it will be impossible to burn a large portion of estimated reserves of fossil fuels if the likely rise in global mean temperatures is to be kept below 2C. But fuels are not the only assets that might be stranded. A similar logic can be applied to parts of the capital stock.”

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