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Sep 24, 2017

Scientists create world’s first ‘molecular robot’ capable of building molecules

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

Scientists at The University of Manchester have created the world’s first ‘molecular robot’ that is capable of performing basic tasks including building other molecules. The tiny robots, which are a millionth of a millimetre in size, can be programmed to move and build molecular cargo, using a tiny robotic arm.

Each individual robot is capable of manipulating a single molecule and is made up of just 150 carbon, hydrogen, oxygen and nitrogen atoms. To put that size into context, a billion billion of these robots piled on top of each other would still only be the same size as a single grain of salt. The robots operate by carrying out chemical reactions in special solutions which can then be controlled and programmed by scientists to perform the basic tasks.

In the future such robots could be used for medical purposes, advanced manufacturing processes and even building molecular factories and assembly lines. The research will be published in Nature on Thursday 21st September.

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Sep 24, 2017

Rise of the Robolawyers

Posted by in categories: law, robotics/AI

Thankfully, no one’s out there systematically murdering lawyers. But advances in artificial intelligence may diminish their role in the legal system or even, in some cases, replace them altogether. Here’s what we stand to gain—and what we should fear—from these technologies.


How legal representation could come to resemble TurboTax.

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Sep 23, 2017

Malicious code written into DNA infects the computer that reads it

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

In a mind-boggling world first, a team of biologists and security researchers have successfully infected a computer with a malicious program coded into a strand of DNA.

It sounds like science fiction, but I assure you it’s quite real — although you probably don’t have to worry about this particular threat vector any time soon. That said, the possibilities suggested by this project are equally fascinating and terrifying to contemplate.

The multidisciplinary team at the University of Washington isn’t out to make outlandish headlines, although it’s certainly done that. They were concerned that the security infrastructure around DNA transcription and analysis was inadequate, having found elementary vulnerabilities in open-source software used in labs around the world. Given the nature of the data usually being handled, this could be a serious problem going forward.

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Sep 23, 2017

These tiny robots can kill cancer cells

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

Scientists have developed tiny robots than can drill into deadly cancer cells, blasting them open.

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Sep 23, 2017

Why Are These People Eating Worms to Be Healthy? (part I)

Posted by in categories: biotech/medical, food

Summary: The Hygiene Hypothesis persuades people to consume parasitic worms as a way to treat chronic autoimmune disorders. As well, people eat tapeworms as a way to lose weight. Learn more about two closely related scientific beliefs called the “Hygiene Hypothesis” and the “Old Freinds Hypothesis.” Part 1 of a 2-part series. Cover photo: 3drenderings / Getty Images.

It’s difficult to believe, but thousands of people eat worms as a way to lose weight or cure diseases.

People don’t just eat worms on TV shows, like the Fear Factor. Some extreme dieters consume tapeworms as a way to lose weight. Another group of people ingests parasitic worms known as helminths to ward-off the debilitating symptoms of autoimmune diseases.

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Sep 23, 2017

Why Are These People Eating Worms to Be Healthy? (part II)

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

Summary: Helminthic therapy is the intentional consumption of parasites as a treatment for autoimmune disease. Out of the 7000 people who practice helminthic therapy each year, this report tells the story of a young woman who purchases black market worms and then treats herself at a high cost. Part 2 of a 2-part series. Cover photo: Eraxion / Getty Images.

Would you eat worms to boost your overall health or cure what ails you?

Over 7,000 people intentionally self-infect with parasites, and the practice is growing in popularity.

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Sep 23, 2017

A Vaccine Is Being Developed For Preventing Tooth Decay And It Sounds Amazing

Posted by in categories: biotech/medical, health

Regular visits to the dentist are an important part of keeping your teeth healthy. But what if you could give your oral health a boost by receiving a vaccine on top of your regular dental care routine?

Researchers from the Wuhan Institute of Virology (WIOV) of the Chinese Academy of Sciences are working on such a vaccine, and their study has just been published in Scientific Reports.

Led by WIOV scientist Yan Huimin, the researchers tested a fusion of proteins to prevent the development of dental caries. Better known as dental cavities, caries is caused by the bacteria Streptococcus mutans (S. mutans).

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Sep 23, 2017

The Think Liberty Podcast – Candidate Spotlight – Zoltan Istvan

Posted by in category: transhumanism

I did a 30 minute podcast at Think Liberty about my #transhumanism ideas and governor run:


Our very own Kevin Shaw sits down and speaks with 2018 California Libertarian Governor candidate Zoltan Istvan. Comments comments Related.

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Sep 23, 2017

Dr. Aubrey de Grey — Radical Longevity

Posted by in categories: biological, life extension, physics

“Aging is a consequence of physics, not biology.” Dr. Aubrey de Grey believes that the aging of any machine with moving parents is fundamentally the same, whether that machine is alive or not. He states that the SENS Foundation doesn’t work on longevity and immortality — it works on health. “The only way we are going to live substantially longer is by staying truly youthful for substantially longer.”

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Sep 23, 2017

Chinese robot dentist is first to fit implants in patient’s mouth without any human involvement

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

An epidemiological survey has found there were about 400 million patients needing new teeth in China, but the number of qualified dentists was lagging behind demand.

In March this year the US Food and Drug Administration approved the use of a robot system named Yomi designed to assist human surgeons when fitting implants.


Successful procedure raises hopes technology could avoid problems caused by human error and help overcome shortage of qualified dentists.

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