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Oct 13, 2016

Berkeley Lab announces first transistor with a working 1-nanometer gate

Posted by in categories: computing, nanotechnology, quantum physics

Breaks through the 5-nanometer quantum tunneling threshold; may allow for Moore’s law to continue…


Schematic of a transistor with molybdenum disulfide semiconductor and 1-nanometer carbon nanotube gate. (credit: Sujay Desai/Berkeley Lab)

The first transistor with a working 1-nanometer (nm) gate has been created by a team led by Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory (Berkeley Lab) scientists. Until now, a transistor gate size less than 5 nanometers has been considered impossible because of quantum tunneling effects. (One nanometer is the diameter of a glucose molecule.)

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Oct 13, 2016

BT And Toshiba Showcase UK’s First Secure Quantum Communications

Posted by in categories: encryption, quantum physics

BT and Toshiba have showcased the UK’s first use of secure quantum communication at the telecoms company’s research and development centre in Ipswich.

The showcase demonstrates the use of quantum cryptography for communications over fibre optic cabling. By exploiting the quantum states of photons, the most visible elementary particles in the electromagnetic spectrum, the cryptographic technique can be used to communicate securely over normal fibre cables.

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Oct 13, 2016

DARPA investigating blockchain for nuclear weapons, satellite security

Posted by in categories: bitcoin, cybercrime/malcode, military

If the Defense Department is looking to implement blockchain, other organizations may quickly follow suit. Blockchain technology helps guarantee that information has a timestamp and recorded whenever any change happens, ensuring data can be trusted in real time. In DARPA’s case, blockchain technology could help track attempted data breaches.

“Whenever weapons are employed … it tends to be a place where data integrity in general is incredibly important,” Booher said. “So nuclear command and control, satellite command and control, command and control in general, [information integrity] is very important.”

In September, DARPA awarded a $1.8 million contract to computer security firm Galois, asking it to verify a specific type of blockchain technology from a company called Guardtime. If the verification goes well, the military could become one of a growing number of industries and institutions using blockchain to help ensure the security of their operations.

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Oct 13, 2016

Taiwan, China, Japan establishing their own Versions of DARPA

Posted by in categories: military, policy

Taiwan’s Deputy Minister of National Defense Lee Hsi-ming recently said Taipei is seriously considering organizing its own DARPA to accelerate the research, development and application of military technology.

Lee’s statement, which was made at the 14th annual US-Taiwan Defense Industry Conference in Virginia, followed media reports saying Taiwan lags behind other East Asian countries in establishing a DARPA-like agency. Japan and China have already organized advanced defense research establishments.

Lee’s announcement about establishing a “Taiwanese DARPA,” however, triggered debate among legislators in the country’s parliament, the Legislative Yuan. Critics of the proposed think tank said the proposal for its creation might become a contentious policy item since it will require sharing or distributing funds across agencies.

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Oct 13, 2016

Quantum film sensor stops delivery drones crashing into things

Posted by in categories: drones, military, quantum physics

A sensor that uses infrared laser light and quantum film detects objects up to 20 metres away, helping drones to dodge collisions.

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Oct 13, 2016

Will Quantum Computers Kill Bitcoin?

Posted by in categories: bitcoin, cybercrime/malcode, encryption, quantum physics

Since they were first theorized by the physicist Richard Feynman in 1982, quantum computers have promised to bring about a new era of computing. It is only relatively recently that theory has translated into significant real-world advances, with the likes of Google, NASA and the CIA working towards building a quantum computer. Computer scientists are now warning that the arrival of the ultra-powerful machines will cripple current encryption methods and as a result bring a close to the great bitcoin experiment—collapsing the technological foundations that bitcoin is built upon.

“Bitcoin is definitely not quantum computer proof,” Andersen Cheng, co-founder of U.K. cybersecurity firm Post Quantum, tells Newsweek. “Bitcoin will expire the very day the first quantum computer appears.”

The danger quantum computers pose to bitcoin, Cheng explains, is in the cryptography surrounding what is known as the public and private keys—a set of numbers used to facilitate transactions. Users of bitcoin have a public key and a private key. In order to receive bitcoin, the recipient shares the public key with the sender, but in order to spend it they need their private key, which only they know. If somebody else is able to learn the private key, they can spend all the bitcoin.

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Oct 13, 2016

Hubble: Observable universe holds ten times more galaxies than previously thought

Posted by in category: cosmology

Not 100 billion galaxies but one trillion. Is this the missing mass then? No more “dark matter”?


The latest finding with the Hubble space telescope:

Observable Universe contains ten times more galaxies than previously thought

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Oct 13, 2016

This Revolutionary Bionic Eye Sends Images Directly To Your Brain

Posted by in categories: cyborgs, neuroscience, transhumanism

In Brief:

This newly developed bionic eye sends images directly to the brain to restore a tiny fraction of the pixels a normal eye can produce.

There are about 285 million people in the world who suffer from some type of visual impairment. For many years, researchers have been looking for ways to restore eyesight. This year, Australian volunteers are set to receive bionic eyes which should help restore their vision.

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Oct 13, 2016

Rocket Lab Aims to Win Cubesat-Launching Race

Posted by in categories: business, satellites

Rocket Lab is dedicating itself to launching small satellites cheaply and efficiently — a capability the American company thinks the burgeoning private spaceflight industry desperately needs.

Small satellites, some no bigger than a lunch box, are revolutionizing how people gather data about the Earth, and they might be the future of global communications.

Rocket Lab’s business model is a bit like Henry Ford’s was when he started selling Model T’s: keep the machine simple, produce a lot of them and keep them affordable. Peter Beck, the company’s owner, told Space.com that he’d like to reach a point where Rocket Lab launches one of its custom-made, small-satellite rockets about once per week. And similar to Henry Ford (who didn’t even want to make different colors of the Model T), Beck said that until that basic goal is met, he has no plans to diversify the company’s services. [Satellite Quiz: How Well Do You Know What’s Orbiting Earth?].

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Oct 13, 2016

Free Science: NASA Just Opened Its Entire Research Library to the Public

Posted by in category: science

In Brief:

NASA has announced that all research it has funded will be FREE and accessible to anyone through their new open portal PubSpace.

NASA is opening up its research library to the public in the newly launched web database PubSpace …and it’s absolutely free.

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