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Nov 11, 2019

AI and automation will disrupt our world — but only Andrew Yang is warning about it

Posted by in categories: economics, education, employment, robotics/AI

Disruption of the job market and the economy from automation and the rise of artificial intelligence (AI) is one of the primary ideas animating Andrew Yang’s surprising campaign for the Democratic presidential nomination. Alone among the candidates, Yang is directly engaging with one of the central forces that will shape our futures.


A recent report from the consulting firm Deloitte found that, among more than a thousand surveyed American executives, 63 percent agreed with the statement that “to cut costs, my company wants to automate as many jobs as possible using AI,” and 36 percent already believe that job losses from AI-enabled automation should be viewed as an ethical issue. In other words, while media pundits dismiss worries about automation, executives at America’s largest companies are actively planning for it.

It may seem odd to worry about AI and automation at a time when the headline unemployment rate is below 4 percent. But it is important to remember that this metric only captures people who are actively seeking work. Consider that, in 1965, only 3 percent of American men between the ages of 25 and 54 — old enough to have completed education but too young to retire — were neither working nor actively looking for employment. Today, that number is about 11 percent.

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Nov 10, 2019

SpaceX readies upgraded Starlink satellites for launch

Posted by in categories: internet, satellites

New satellites for SpaceX’s Starlink broadband network set for launch Monday from Cape Canaveral will debut several performance and safety upgrades, but they do not include changes to reduce the brightness of the satellites, a modification SpaceX says it will introduce on future Starlink craft to mitigate their impacts on ground-based astronomy.

The 60 Starlink satellites awaiting launch Monday will join 60 others launched in May. SpaceX says 1,440 of the flat-panel satellites are needed to provide Internet service over the “populated world,” a service level the company says could be achieved after 24 launches.

The Starlink network could offer service for parts of the United States and Canada after six launches, according to SpaceX.

Nov 10, 2019

Artificial Intelligence Is Too Important to Leave to Google and Facebook Alone

Posted by in category: robotics/AI

Let’s develop a public research consortium to take on useful projects that have no commercial prospects.

Nov 10, 2019

Fingerprint test could tell if people took drugs or skipped medication

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

A fingerprint test developed by British scientists could tell if patients are skipping medication.

Forgetting or failing to take drugs can have serious consequences, particularly for people suffering from chronic conditions or those with mental health issues.

Non-adherence to prescribed medication is a major problem for the NHS, with some studies showing only 50 per cent of people take long-term drugs as instructed, at a cost of around £300 million in wasted medicine each year.

Nov 10, 2019

Scientists discover mood-altering brain receptor

Posted by in category: neuroscience

A brain receptor believed to be linked to negative moods has been discovered in a part of the brain that contributes to pain. The paper is published in Science.

Nov 10, 2019

Komodo to lead blockchain revolution with quantum-safe cryptography

Posted by in categories: bitcoin, computing, cryptocurrencies, encryption, quantum physics

Stadelmann said that Komodo is similar to Ethereum but it is 100% independent, free and open-sourced platform.

“As the world is getting digitised, it is all based on binary digits. Binary digits can have either 1 (on) or 0 (off). We don’t speak of bits anymore but quantum qubits or quantum bits, which can be in both 1 and 0 states at the same time. This qubit can attain so many states at the same time and they are also able to process calculations at a much faster rate than classical computers,” he said.

As a blockchain platform, Stadelmann said that Komodo is trying to solve the problem and has implemented quantum-safe cryptographic solutions for the past couple of years which will not be able to crack cryptographic signatures.

Nov 10, 2019

Hydrogen Boride Nanosheets: A Promising Material for Hydrogen Carrier

Posted by in categories: innovation, materials

Innovative nanosheets made from equal parts of hydrogen and boron have a greater capacity to store and release hydrogen compared with conventional metal-based materials.

Nov 10, 2019

‘Magnetic ionics’ breakthrough promises ultra-low-power microchips

Posted by in categories: computing, innovation

Circa 2018


Researchers at MIT (Cambridge, MA) and at Brookhaven National Laboratory (Upton, NY) have demonstrated a new approach to controlling magnetism in a microchip that could lead to next-generation memory and logic devices that consume drastically less power than current versions.

Nov 10, 2019

Mapping cells in the ‘immortal’ regenerating hydra

Posted by in categories: biotech/medical, genetics, life extension

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The tiny hydra, a freshwater invertebrate related to jellyfish and corals, has an amazing ability to renew its cells and regenerate damaged tissue. Cut a hydra in half, and it will regenerate its body and nervous system in a couple of days. Researchers at the University of California, Davis have now traced the fate of hydra’s cells, revealing how three lines of stem cells become nerves, muscles or other tissues.

Celina Juliano, assistant professor in the UC Davis Department of Molecular and Cellular Biology, project scientist Stefan Siebert and colleagues including Jeff Farrell, a postdoctoral researcher at Harvard University, sequenced the RNA transcripts of 25,000 single hydra cells to follow the genetic trajectory of nearly all differentiated cell types.

“The beauty of single-cell sequencing and why this is such a big deal for developmental biologists is that we can actually capture the genes that are expressed as cells differentiate from stem cells into their different cell types,” Juliano said.

Nov 10, 2019

Healing Value Of Magnets Demonstrated In Biomedical Engineering Study

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

Circa 2008


A recent study demonstrates that the use of an acute, localized static magnetic field of moderate strength can result in significant reduction of swelling when applied immediately after an inflammatory injury. Magnets have been touted for their healing properties since ancient Greece. Magnetic therapy is still widely used today as an alternative method for treating a number of conditions, from arthritis to depression, but there hasn’t been scientific proof that magnets can heal.

Lack of regulation and widespread public acceptance have turned magnetic therapy into a $5 billion world market. Hopeful consumers buy bracelets, knee braces, shoe inserts, mattresses, and other products that are embedded with magnets based on anecdotal evidence, hoping for a non-invasive and drug-free cure to what ails them.

“The FDA regulates specific claims of medical efficacy, but in general static magnetic fields are viewed as safe,” notes Thomas Skalak, professor and chair of biomedical engineering at U.Va.