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  • Researchers Design DNA With New Shapes and Structures
    By on December 6, 2014 | Comments Off  Comments


    Jason Koebler writes: The shape of DNA is a double helix, right? That’s what we are taught. Well, now the answer is “not always.” Researchers at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology have discovered how to program DNA to be shaped like a bowl, or a spiral, or a ring, or other shapes that aren’t found in nature. It’s the latest in a string of discoveries about the underlying structure of life and the building blocks by which it’s made. Recently, (more…)



  • Fusion Power By 2020? Researchers Say Yes and Turn To Crowdfunding.
    By on May 20, 2014 | Comments Off  Comments

    Luminary Crush (109477) writes “To date, the bulk of fusion research has been channelled towards a plasma containment and stabilization method. This is the approach used by ITER’s tokamak reactor, the cost of which could exceed US$13.7 billion before it’s online in the year 2027 (barring further delays). Researchers at LPP Fusion, in a project partially financed by NASA-JPL, are working in a different direction: focus fusion, which focuses the plasma (more…)

  • U.S. Biomedical Research ‘Unsustainable’ Prominent Researchers Warn
    By on April 15, 2014 | Comments Off  Comments

    sciencehabit (1205606) writes “The U.S. biomedical science system ‘is on an unsustainable path’ and needs major reform, four prominent researchers say. Researchers should ‘confront the dangers at hand,’ the authors write, and ‘rethink’ how academic research is funded, staffed, and organized. Among other issues, the team suggests that the system may be producing too many new researchers and forcing them to compete for a stagnating pool of funding.”

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  • Researchers: Rats Didn’t Spread Black Death, Humans Did
    By on March 30, 2014 | Comments Off  Comments

    concertina226 (2447056) writes “Scientists studying the human remains of plague victims found during excavations for London’s new Crossrail train line have concluded that humans spread the Black Death rather than rats, a fact that could rewrite history books. University of Keele scientists, working together with Crossrail’s lead archaeologist Jay Carver and osteologists from the Museum of London, analyzed the bones and teeth of 25 skeletons dug up (more…)

  • MIT Researchers Defend Against Wireless Attacks
    By on August 25, 2011 | Comments Off  Comments

    alphadogg writes “MIT researchers have devised a protocol to flummox man-in-the-middle attacks against wireless networks. The all-software solution lets wireless radios automatically pair without the use of passwords and without relying on out-of-band techniques such as infrared or video channels. Dubbed Tamper-evident pairing, or TEP, the technique is based on understanding how man-in-the-middle attacks tamper with wireless messages, and then detects (more…)

  • Genome Researchers Wants Your Genes
    By on August 20, 2011 | Comments Off  Comments

    An anonymous reader writes “The Beijing Genomics Institute (BGI) is looking for smart volunteers to donate their genes for analysis. They are seeking subjects with high intelligence; you can only qualify if you got a high score in SAT/ACT/GRE or got awards in competitions like Math/Physics Olympiads or TopCoder. They’re also launching a drive to recruit US participants. Their first stop (PDF) appears to have been Google, which has run into trouble (more…)

  • Researchers Expose Tracking Service That Can’t Be Dodged
    By on July 30, 2011 | Comments Off  Comments

    Worf Maugg writes with this excerpt from Wired:
    “Researchers at U.C. Berkeley have discovered that some of the net’s most popular sites are using a tracking service that can’t be evaded — even when users block cookies, turn off storage in Flash, or use browsers’ ‘incognito’ functions. The service, called KISSmetrics, is used by sites to track the number of visitors, what the visitors do on the site, and where they come to the site from — (more…)

  • Researchers Get New View of How Water and Sulfur dioxide Mix
    By on May 9, 2011 | Comments Off  Comments

    High in the sky, water in clouds can act as a temptress to lure airborne pollutants such as sulfur dioxide into reactive aqueous particulates. Although this behavior is not incorporated into today’s climate-modeling scenarios, emerging research from the University of Oregon provides evidence that it …

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  • Cambridge researchers discover why laptops catch fire
    By on May 21, 2010 | Comments Off  Comments

    It’s all to do with the growth of metal fibers in the batteries. These fibers are known as dendrites and when lithium batteries are charged up quickly or repeatedly, tiny lithium dendrites form on the carbon anodes, causing short circuits — which in turn cause the device to rapidly overheat and catch fire.

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  • Researchers Create Logic Circuits From DNA
    By on May 13, 2010 | Comments Off  Comments

    separsons writes “Researchers at Duke University recently used DNA to craft tiny chips used in computers and electronic circuits. By mixing DNA snippets with other molecules and exposing them to light, researchers created self-assembling, DNA-based logic circuits. Once perfected the tech could serve as an endlessly abundant, cheap alternative to silicon semiconductors. Chris Dwyer, lead researcher on the project, says that one grad student using DNA (more…)