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Aug 8, 2015

Cheap, power-efficient flash memory for big data without sacrificing speed

Posted by in categories: computing, energy

A 20-node BlueDBM Cluster (credit: Sang-Woo Jun et al./ISCA 2015)

There’s a big problem with big data: the huge RAM memory required. Now MIT researchers have developed a new system called “BlueDBM” that should make servers using flash memory as efficient as those using conventional RAM for several common big-data applications, while preserving their power and cost savings.

Here’s the context: Data sets in areas such as genomics, geological data, and daily twitter feeds can be as large as 5TB to 20 TB. Complex data queries in such data sets require high-speed random-access memory (RAM). But that would require a huge cluster with up to 100 servers, each with 128GB to 256GBs of DRAM (dynamic random access memory).

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Aug 8, 2015

The MIND diet may slow brain aging

Posted by in categories: biotech/medical, life extension, neuroscience, Ray Kurzweil

Eating a group of specific foods — known as the MIND diet — may slow cognitive decline among aging adults, even when the person is not at risk of developing Alzheimer’s disease, according to researchers at Rush University Medical Center.

This finding supplements a previous study by the research team, reported by KurzweiliAI in March, that found that the MIND diet may reduce a person’s risk in developing Alzheimer’s disease.

The researchers’ new study shows that older adults who followed the MIND diet more rigorously showed an equivalent of being 7.5 years younger cognitively than those who followed the diet least. Results of the study were recently published online in the journal Alzheimer’s & Dementia: The Journal of the Alzheimer’s Association.

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Aug 8, 2015

The Video For Nero’s Two Minds Is Like A Lost ‘80s Cyberpunk Flick

Posted by in category: entertainment

The video for Two Minds, the latest single from British electronic trio NERO looks just like it’s a lost cyberpunk film from the 1980s. It’s got that early digital look to it, and the story that plays out wouldn’t be out of place on a stack of forgotten VHS tapes.

The video single, which is on the band’s upcoming album, Between II Worlds, follows a being made of static who can jump into televisions. Like any good ‘80s movie, its pursued by a bunch of grim looking men in trench coats who are deadset on taking it down, for … reasons. Throw in a hapless hero who gets caught in the middle, and you’ve got the perfect science fiction adventure.

The song is pretty catchy, too. Between II Worlds is due out on August 28th.

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Aug 8, 2015

Neuroscientist shows how to control someone else’s arm with your brain

Posted by in category: neuroscience

The neuroscientist and engineer Greg Gage is trying to change that and make neuroscience more accessible to all.

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Aug 8, 2015

A Keanu Reeves movie is being turned into a virtual reality game where you get to be the man himself

Posted by in categories: entertainment, virtual reality

“John Wick” was a box-office success and a fun thrill ride. And next year, you’ll be able to play as the titular assassin in virtual reality.

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Aug 8, 2015

MIT Scientists Discover A Universal ‘Link’ Between All Languages

Posted by in category: neuroscience

Of the roughly 6,500 spoken languages in the world, not one commonality has been found connecting them all together — until now.

Researchers at MIT have found what they’re calling a “language universal,” which focuses on sentence structure as a link among languages.

Edward Gibson, a professor of cognitive sciences at MIT and an author of the study, joined HuffPost Live on Friday to discuss his findings.

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Aug 8, 2015

Is Regulation of Artificial Intelligence Possible?

Posted by in category: robotics/AI

Despite worries about threats from artificial intelligence, debates about the proper role of government regulation of AI have generally been lacking.

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Aug 8, 2015

The Aging Brain: A Case Of Bad Waste Management

Posted by in categories: life extension, neuroscience

As the brain ages, it becomes less efficient at recycling and eliminating build up of waste; ‘removal vans’ fail to do the rounds, and accumulation starts to overtake removal.

“We found that people in their 30s typically take about four hours to clear half the amyloid beta 42 from the brain,” says Randall J. Bateman. “In this new study, we show that at over 80 years old, it takes more than 10 hours.”

Research has uncovered that a protein called amyloid beta 42 (a natural byproduct of neural activity), is normally removed effectively in youth but the rate of clearance was found to slow progressively with age. Accumulation of amyloid beta 42 can lead to aggregation and consequent plaque formation and a slowdown in removal was tied to symptoms of dysfunction including memory loss and personality change. The study found that the brain disposes of this protein through a number of channels, and more work could uncover ways of boosting waste mangement in ailing brains, thus avoiding this toxic accumulation.

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Aug 7, 2015

Chemistry 3D Printer Synthesizes Rare Molecules

Posted by in categories: 3D printing, chemistry

Need an obscure medicinal compound found only in a jungle plant? Just print it.

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Aug 7, 2015

Ban Killer Robots before They Become Weapons of Mass Destruction

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

Technology » Forum Email Print Ban Killer Robots before They Become Weapons of Mass Destruction By Peter Asaro | August 7, 2015 Vladislav Ociacia/Thinkstock SA Forum is an invited essay from experts on topical issues in science and technology. Last week the Future of Life Institute released a letter signed by some 1,500 artificial intelligence (AI), robotics and technology researchers. Among them were celebrities of science and the technology industry—Stephen Hawking, Elon Musk and Steve Wozniak—along with public intellectuals such as Noam Chomsky and Daniel Dennett. The letter called for an international ban on offensive autonomous weapons, which could target and fire weapons without meaningful human control.

This week is the 70th anniversary of the atomic bombing of the Japanese cities of Hiroshima and Nagasaki, together killing over 200,000 people, mostly civilians. It took 10 years before the physicist Albert Einstein and philosopher Bertrand Russell, along with nine other prominent scientists and intellectuals, issued a letter calling for global action to address the threat to humanity posed by nuclear weapons. They were motivated by the atomic devastation in Japan but also by the escalating arms race of the Cold War that was rapidly and vastly increasing the number, destructive capability, and efficient delivery of nuclear arms, draining vast resources and putting humanity at risk of total destruction. They also note in their letter that those who knew the most about the effects of such weapons were the most concerned and pessimistic about their continued development and use.

The Future of Life Institute letter is significant for the same reason: It is signed by a large group of those who know the most about AI and robotics, with some 1,500 signatures at its release on July 28 and more than 17,000 today. Signatories include many current and former presidents, fellows and members of the American Association of Artificial Intelligence, the Association of Computing Machinery and the IEEE Robotics & Automation Society; editors of leading AI and robotics journals; and key players in leading artificial-intelligence companies such as Google DeepMind and IBM’s Watson team. As Max Tegmark, Massachusetts Institute of Technology physics professor and a founder of the Future of Life Institute, told Motherboard, “This is the AI experts who are building the technology who are speaking up and saying they don’t want anything to do with this.”

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