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May 19, 2024

New Circuit Boards can be Repeatedly Recycled

Posted by in categories: chemistry, computing, sustainability

A recent United Nations report found that the world generated 137 billion pounds of electronic waste in 2022, an 82% increase from 2010. Yet less than a quarter of 2022’s e-waste was recycled. While many things impede a sustainable afterlife for electronics, one is that we don’t have systems at scale to recycle the printed circuit boards (PCBs) found in nearly all electronic devices.

PCBs — which house and interconnect chips, transistors and other components — typically consist of layers of thin glass fiber sheets coated in hard plastic and laminated together with copper. That plastic can’t easily be separated from the glass, so PCBs often pile up in landfills, where their chemicals can seep into the environment. Or they’re burned to extract their electronics’ valuable metals like gold and copper. This burning, often undertaken in developing nations, is wasteful and can be toxic — especially for those doing the work without proper protections.

A team led by researchers at the University of Washington developed a new PCB that performs on par with traditional materials and can be recycled repeatedly with negligible material loss. Researchers used a solvent that transforms a type of vitrimer — a cutting-edge class of sustainable polymers — to a jelly-like substance without damaging it, allowing the solid components to be plucked out for reuse or recycling.

May 19, 2024

Vitamin D Alters Mouse Gut Bacteria to give Better Cancer Immunity

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

Researchers at the Francis Crick Institute, the National Cancer Institute (NCI) of the U.S. National Institutes of Health (NIH) and Aalborg University in Denmark have found that vitamin D encourages the growth of a type of gut bacteria in mice which improves immunity to cancer.

Reported today in Science, the researchers found that mice given a diet rich in vitamin D had better immune resistance to experimentally transplanted cancers and improved responses to immunotherapy treatment. This effect was also seen when gene editing was used to remove a protein that binds to vitamin D in the blood and keeps it away from tissues.

Surprisingly, the team found that vitamin D acts on epithelial cells in the intestine, which in turn increase the amount of a bacteria called Bacteroides fragilis. This microbe gave mice better immunity to cancer as the transplanted tumours didn’t grow as much, but the researchers are not yet sure how.

May 19, 2024

Could The UNIVERSE Be Someone’s MIND?

Posted by in category: space

Explore the profound question at the heart of the cosmos: Could the universe be someone’s mind? Delve into the enigma of the Boltzmann brain paradox as we ponder the possibility of conscious entities emerging spontaneously in the cosmic void. Join us on a journey through the mysteries of existence, where science meets philosophy in a quest for understanding.

0:00 Introduction.
0:46 The Brain and the Universe.
02:35 A Paradox Revealed.
04:30 Delving Deeper.
06:48 Resolution and Conclusion.
08:55 Parting Thoughts

May 19, 2024

Einstein’s Other Theory of Everything

Posted by in categories: open access, physics

Learn more by actively engaging in your favourite topics with Brilliant! First 30 days are free and 20% off the annual premium subscription when you use our link ➜

Einstein completed his theory of general relativity in 1915 when he was 37 years old. What did he do for the remaining 40 years of his life? He continued developing his masterwork of course! Feeling that his theory was incomplete, Einstein pursued a unified field theory. Though he ultimately failed, the ideas he came up with were quite interesting. I have read a lot of old Einstein papers in the past weeks and here is my summary of what I believe he tried to do.

Continue reading “Einstein’s Other Theory of Everything” »

May 19, 2024

Bizarre device uses ‘blind quantum computing’ to let you access quantum computers from home

Posted by in categories: computing, internet, quantum physics

Researchers have developed a new communication paradigm that can let them securely connect a PC to a quantum computer over the internet.

Known as “blind quantum computing,” the technique uses a fiber-optic cable to connect a quantum computer with a photon-detecting device and uses quantum memory — the equivalent of conventional computing memory for quantum computers. This device is connected directly to a PC, which can then perform operations on the quantum computer remotely. The details were outlined in a new study published April 10 in the journal Physical Review Letters.

May 19, 2024

Nvidia SHATTERS Quantum Computing! Mind-Blowing CUDA-Q Centers Unveiled

Posted by in categories: computing, quantum physics

🔒 Keep Your Digital Life Private and Be Safe Online:

May 19, 2024

Neuralink’s First Brain Implant Patient Reveals How The Technology Changed His Life

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

Mr Arbaugh said that the device has given him the ability to have nearly full control over using a computer, using only his thoughts.

May 19, 2024

Superintelligence: Paths, Dangers, Strategies

Posted by in categories: biotech/medical, ethics, existential risks, robotics/AI

Since the release of ChatGPT in November 2022, artificial intelligence (AI) has both entered the common lexicon and sparked substantial public intertest. A blunt yet clear example of this transition is the drastic increase in worldwide Google searches for ‘AI’ from late 2022, which reached a record high in February 2024.

You would therefore be forgiven for thinking that AI is suddenly and only recently a ‘big thing.’ Yet, the current hype was preceded by a decades-long history of AI research, a field of academic study which is widely considered to have been founded at the 1956 Dartmouth Summer Research Project on Artificial Intelligence.1 Since its beginning, a meandering trajectory of technical successes and ‘AI winters’ subsequently unfolded, which eventually led to the large language models (LLMs) that have nudged AI into today’s public conscience.

Alongside those who aim to develop transformational AI as quickly as possible – the so-called ‘Effective Accelerationism’ movement, or ‘e/acc’ – exist a smaller and often ridiculed group of scientists and philosophers who call attention to the inherent profound dangers of advanced AI – the ‘decels’ and ‘doomers.’2 One of the most prominent concerned figures is Nick Bostrom, the Oxford philosopher whose wide-ranging works include studies of the ethics of human enhancement,3 anthropic reasoning,4 the simulation argument,5 and existential risk.6 I first read his 2014 book Superintelligence: Paths, Dangers, Strategies7 five years ago, which convinced me that the risks which would be posed to humanity by a highly capable AI system (a ‘superintelligence’) ought to be taken very seriously before such a system is brought into existence. These threats are of a different kind and scale to those posed by the AIs in existence today, including those developed for use in medicine and healthcare (such as the consequences of training set bias,8 uncertainties over clinical accountability, and problems regarding data privacy, transparency and explainability),9 and are of a truly existential nature. In light of the recent advancements in AI, I recently revisited the book to reconsider its arguments in the context of today’s digital technology landscape.

May 19, 2024

Ideas & Trends (2024) Nanotechnology — The Three Lenses: Past, Present, and Future

Posted by in categories: futurism, nanotechnology

The Buccino Leadership Institute presents Ideas & Trends (2024) Nanotechnology: The Three Lenses — Past, Present and Future.

May 19, 2024

Daniel Dennett: ‘Where Am I?’

Posted by in category: neuroscience

Dennett’s classic story raises deep philosophical questions about identity and consciousness.

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