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Bionic Plants

March 17, 2014 8:34 pm | by Massachusetts Institute of Technology | News | Comments

Plants have many valuable functions: They provide food and fuel, release the oxygen that we breathe, and add beauty to our surroundings. Now, a team of MIT researchers wants to make plants even more useful by augmenting them with nanomaterials that could enhance their energy production...

Phone Record Surveillance Yields Vast Amounts of Information

March 17, 2014 5:04 pm | by Stanford School of Engineering | News | Comments

Two computer science graduate students have found that the NSA's mass collection of phone records can yield much more information about people's private lives than the U.S. government claims. The National Security Agency's mass surveillance of telephone metadata could yield detailed information...

Thermal Vision

March 17, 2014 4:54 pm | by University of Michigan | News | Comments

The first room-temperature light detector that can sense the full infrared spectrum has the potential to put heat vision technology into a contact lens. Unlike comparable mid- and far-infrared detectors currently on the market, the detector doesn't need bulky cooling equipment to work...

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Stanford Lab Yields New Privacy-Based Social Network

March 17, 2014 4:39 pm | by Stanford School of Engineering | News | Comments

  Amid much fanfare, word came last week that Facebook was acquiring messaging application WhatsApp for $19 billion. In the days that followed, competitors saw a flood of traffic. Industry watchers heralded the move as a bellwether of the deep public distrust of the largest...

SmartWatch: Masayoshi Son Slams U.S. Wireless Industry

March 17, 2014 12:43 pm | by Eric Sorensen, Coordinator of Multimedia Development | Videos | Comments

Welcome to this weeks episode of SmartWatch, where we take a look at Softbank President and CEO Masayoshi Son’s quest for a unified Sprint and T-Mobile. We’ll also hear from BlackBerry CEO John Chen on his plans to turn around the Canadian handset maker...                  

Rechargeable Nano-Generator

March 17, 2014 12:28 pm | by American Chemical Society | Videos | Comments

Zhong Lin Wang and his colleagues at Georgia Institute of Technology have developed a new rechargeable nano-generator that can power smart phones, and many other portable electronic devices...                                       

Searchers Relying on Satellite Data to Find Plane

March 17, 2014 9:46 am | News | Comments

Finding a missing Malaysia Airlines plane may hinge on whether searchers can narrow down where they need to look using satellite data that is inexact and has never been used for that purpose before, search and rescue experts say ...                   

Harnessing Everyday Motion to Power Mobile Devices

March 16, 2014 10:24 pm | by American Chemical Society | News | Comments

Imagine powering your cell phone by simply walking around your office or rubbing it with the palm of your hand. Rather than plugging it into the wall, you become the power source. Researchers presented these commercial possibilities and a unique vision for green energy...

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Battery that 'Breathes' Could Power Next-Gen Electric Vehicles

March 16, 2014 10:19 pm | by American Chemical Society | News | Comments

Sales of electric vehicles (EVs) nearly doubled in 2013, but most won't take you farther than 100 miles on one charge. To boost their range toward a tantalizing 300 miles or more, researchers are reporting new progress on a "breathing" battery that has the potential to one day replace the lithium-ion technology of today's EVs...

Photos of the Day: Drones at Home

March 16, 2014 9:40 pm | by Joan Lowy, Associated Press | News | Comments

A small, four-rotor drone hovered over Washington Nationals baseball players for a few days during spring training in Florida last month, taking publicity photos impossible for a human photographer to capture. But no one got the Federal Aviation Administration's permission first...

U.S. Lags as Commercial Drones Take off Around Globe

March 16, 2014 9:25 pm | by Joan Lowy, Associated Press | News | Comments

A small, four-rotor drone hovered over Washington Nationals baseball players for a few days during spring training in Florida last month, taking publicity photos impossible for a human photographer to capture. But no one got the Federal Aviation Administration's permission first...

Officers' Body Cameras Raise Privacy Concerns

March 16, 2014 9:13 pm | by Tami Abdollah, Associated Press | News | Comments

Officers at thousands of law enforcement agencies are wearing tiny cameras to record their interactions with the public, but in many cases the devices are being rolled out faster than departments are able to create policies to govern their use. And some rank-and-file officers are worried the technology might...

U.S. Goes High-Tech to Help Oversee Afghan Aid Work

March 16, 2014 9:08 pm | by Deb Riechmann, Associated Press | News | Comments

The main U.S. foreign assistance agency wants to step up use of smartphones, satellite imagery and GPS cameras to oversee tax-funded development projects in Afghanistan that aid workers no longer will be able to observe firsthand as American troops leave the country...

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Review: Uneasy First Steps with Google Glass

March 16, 2014 9:03 pm | by Barbara Ortutay, AP Technology Writer | News | Comments

Shaped like a lopsided headband, Google Glass is an unassuming piece of technology when you're holding it in your hands. You feel as if you can almost break it, testing its flexibility. Putting it on, though, is another story. Once you do, this Internet-connected eyewear takes on a life of its own...

Photo of the Day: The Growth of Engineering

March 13, 2014 6:56 pm | by Chris Fox, Managing Editor | News | Comments

Over the last several years, there has been a tremendous focus on the creation of opportunities for those in the engineering and science fields, and according to a survey by TE Connectivity, it seems to be paying off...

Nanoscale Optical Switch Breaks Miniaturization Barrier

March 13, 2014 6:48 pm | by Vanderbilt University | News | Comments

An ultra-fast and ultra-small optical switch has been invented that could advance the day when photons replace electrons in the innards of consumer products ranging from cell phones to automobiles. The new optical device can turn on and off trillions of times per second...

Heat-Based Technique Offers New Way to Measure Microscopic Particles

March 13, 2014 2:30 pm | by NC State University | News | Comments

Researchers have developed a new heat-based technique for counting and measuring the size of microscopic particles. The technique is less expensive than light-based techniques and can be used on a wider array of materials than electricity-based techniques...

Graphene-Metal Sandwich Improves Electronics

March 13, 2014 2:20 pm | by University of California, Riverside | News | Comments

Researchers have discovered that creating a graphene-copper-graphene “sandwich” strongly enhances the heat conducting properties of copper, a discovery that could further help in the downscaling of electronics. In the experiments, the researchers found that adding a layer of graphene...

Photos of the Day: Quick, Autonomous Robotic Fish

March 13, 2014 11:02 am | by Massachusetts Institute of Technology | News | Comments

Soft robots — which don't just have soft exteriors but are also powered by fluid flowing through flexible channels — have become a sufficiently popular research topic that they now have their own journal, Soft Robotics. MIT researchers report the first self-contained autonomous soft robot...

Soft Robotic Fish Moves Like the Real Thing

March 13, 2014 10:48 am | by Massachusetts Institute of Technology | News | Comments

Soft robots — which don't just have soft exteriors but are also powered by fluid flowing through flexible channels — have become a sufficiently popular research topic that they now have their own journal, Soft Robotics. MIT researchers report the first self-contained autonomous soft robot...

Apple iPhone Chemicals Under Fire

March 13, 2014 10:17 am | by Michael LiedtkeI, AP Technology Writer | News | Comments

Apple's labor practices are under attack by two activist groups who contend the company makes its iPhones with a hazardous mix of chemicals that threaten the health of factory workers assembling the devices in China. The campaign began Wednesday with an online petition...

'Ultracold' Molecules Promising for Quantum Computing, Simulation

March 12, 2014 5:13 pm | by Purdue University | News | Comments

Researchers have created a new type of "ultracold" molecule, using lasers to cool atoms nearly to absolute zero and then gluing them together, a technology that might be applied to quantum computing, precise sensors and advanced simulations."It sounds counterintuitive, but you can use lasers to take away the kinetic energy, resulting in radical cooling..."

Can Material Rivaling Graphene Be Mined out of Rocks?

March 12, 2014 4:31 pm | by Faculty of Physics University of Warsaw | News | Comments

Will one-atom-thick layers of molybdenum disulfide, a compound that occurs naturally in rocks, prove to be better than graphene for electronic applications? There are many signs that might prove to be the case. But physicists have shown that the nature of the phenomena occurring in layered materials are still ill-understood and require further research...

First Thin Films of Spin Ice Reveal Cold Secrets

March 12, 2014 3:59 pm | by University College London | News | Comments

Thin films of spin ice have been shown to demonstrate surprising properties which could help in the development of applications of magnetricity, the magnetic equivalent of electricity. A team of researchers found that, against expectations, the Third Law of Thermodynamics could be restored in thin films of the magnetic material spin ice...

Quantum Physics Secures New Cryptography Scheme

March 12, 2014 3:51 pm | by Centre for Quantum Technologies at the National University of Singapore | News | Comments

The way we secure digital transactions could soon change. An international team has demonstrated a form of quantum cryptography that can protect people doing business with others they may not know or trust – a situation encountered often on the internet and in everyday life, for example at a bank's ATM...

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