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Computers Catch Up to Primate Brain

December 19, 2014 | by Anne Trafton, MIT News Office | Comments

For decades, neuroscientists have been trying to design computer networks that can mimic visual skills such as recognizing objects, which the human brain does very accurately and quickly ...                  

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Wind Farm Operator PacifiCorp Energy Pleads Guilty in Bird Deaths

December 22, 2014 11:41 am | by Associated Press | Comments

Wind farm operator PacifiCorp Energy will pay $2.5 million in fines after pleading guilty Friday to charges related to the deaths of protected birds in Wyoming. The subsidiary of Portland, Oregon-based PacifiCorp pleaded guilty in federal court in Wyoming to two counts of violating the federal Migratory Bird Treaty Act under a plea deal ... 

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Sony on Shelving 'The Interview': 'We Had No Choice'

December 22, 2014 11:38 am | by Associated Press | Comments

Following pointed criticism from President Barack Obama for shelving "The Interview," Sony Pictures Entertainment on Friday defended its decision, claiming it had no choice but to cancel the film's Christmas Day theatrical release. Obama said during a press conference Friday that Sony "made a mistake" in dropping "The Interview." However, the studio ... 

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Are Driverless Cars Safe? California's Regulators Weigh Pros and Cons

December 22, 2014 11:34 am | by Justin Pritchard, Associated Press | Comments

California's Department of Motor Vehicles will miss a year-end deadline to adopt new rules for cars of the future because regulators first have to figure out how they'll know whether "driverless" vehicles are safe. It's a rare case of the law getting ahead of an emerging technology and reflects regulators' struggle to balance consumer ... 

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Photos of the Day: Mobile User Objective System (MUOS)

December 22, 2014 11:26 am | by WDD Staff | Comments

MUOS operates like a smart phone network in the sky, vastly improving current secure mobile satellite communications for warfighters on the move. Unlike previous systems, MUOS provides users an on-demand, beyond-line-of-sight capability to transmit and receive high-quality, prioritized voice and mission data, on a high-speed ... 

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MUOS-3 Secure Communications Satellite Encapsulated in Launch Vehicle Fairing

December 22, 2014 9:26 am | by WDD Staff | Comments

The third Mobile User Objective System (MUOS) satellite built by Lockheed Martin for the U.S. Navy was encapsulated into its payload fairing Dec. 18. It is scheduled to launch Jan. 20 aboard a United Launch Alliance Atlas V rocket. MUOS operates like a smart phone network in the sky, vastly improving current secure mobile satellite communications ... 

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LTE Innovation Summit Extends 2015 Call for Papers Deadline

December 22, 2014 9:13 am | by WDD Staff | Comments

The 2015 LTE Innovation Summit has extended its Call for Papers deadline to January 16, 2015. The LTE Innovation Summit is seeking presenters from all stages of the mobile wireless ecosystem to discuss the unique design, implementation and testing challenges facing the mobile wireless and broadband industry. This year's areas of interest includes ... 

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Rogers Corporation Signs Agreement to Acquire Arlon

December 19, 2014 10:05 am | by Rogers Corporation | Comments

Rogers Corporation has announced it has signed a definitive agreement to acquire Arlon, currently owned by Handy & Harman ...                                           

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Double Amputee Becomes First to Control Two Robotic Arms with Only His Mind

December 19, 2014 9:56 am | by Alyssa Bereznak, Yahoo! Tech Columnist | Comments

This summer, 40 years after losing both of his arms in a freak electrical accident, Colorado resident Leslie Baugh got two new bionic limbs. And after just 10 days of training, he began using them to move objects from shelf to shelf, controlling them with only ...

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Photos of the Day: O3b Satellite Launch

December 19, 2014 9:56 am | by Meaghan Ziemba, Editor, @MZiembaWDD | Comments

O3b’s satellites will go through a period of in-orbit testing before being fully integrated into the rest of the network in February ...                                       

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Research Finds Graphene Oxide Can Improve Rechargeable Batteries

December 19, 2014 9:11 am | by Kansas State University | Comments

A Kansas State University engineering team has discovered some of graphene oxide's important properties that can improve sodium- and lithium-ion flexible batteries. Gurpreet Singh, assistant professor of mechanical and nuclear engineering, and Lamuel David, doctoral student in mechanical ... 

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Americans Skeptical of the Benefits of the Drone Revolution

December 19, 2014 8:53 am | by JOAN LOWY, Associated Press JENNIFER AGIESTA, Associated Press | Comments

Americans are skeptical that the benefits of the heralded drone revolution will outweigh the risks to privacy and safety, although a majority approve of using small, unmanned aircraft for dangerous jobs or in remote areas, according to a new Associated Press-GfK poll ...             

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The Key to High-Temperature Superconductivity

December 18, 2014 12:02 pm | by Nik Papageorgiou, Ecole Polytechnique Fédérale de Lausanne | Comments

Cuprates are materials with great promise for achieving superconductivity at higher temperatures (-120oC). This could mean low-cost electricity without energy loss. Intense research has focused on understanding the physics of cuprates in the hope that we can develop room-temperature superconductors ...      

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Switching to Spintronics for Future Magnetic Memory & Logic Devices

December 18, 2014 11:43 am | by Lynn Yarris, DOE/Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory | Comments

In a development that holds promise for future magnetic memory and logic devices, researchers with the U.S. Department of Energy (DOE)'s Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory (Berkeley Lab) and Cornell University successfully used an electric field to reverse the magnetization direction in a multiferroic spintronic device at room temperature ...          

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Out of the Lab, into the World

December 18, 2014 11:43 am | by Jessica Fujimori, MIT News correspondent | Comments

For MIT senior Anisha Gururaj, each of her varied interests — such as Indian classical dance and music, engineering medical devices, and education — is one piece of a larger puzzle: seeing the world from many different perspectives, and using those insights to make it a better place ...        

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Drones to Show How Tornadoes Form

December 18, 2014 10:08 am | by DAN ELLIOTT, Associated Press | Comments

Researchers say they've collected promising weather data by flying instrument-laden drones into big Western and Midwestern storms. Now they want to expand the project in hopes of learning more about how tornadoes form ...                          

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