Apr 11, 2014

Six women who paved the way for female engineers and architects

posted by Laura Domela

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The Brooklyn Bridge was an awesome feat of engineering that required not just scientific prowess, but political strength. For 14 years, the construction of the bridge was overseen and managed by a woman named Emily Warren Roebling, who took over the role as chief engineer after her husband fell ill.

Roebling is one of the women featured in the new book Women of Steel and Stone: 22 Inspirational Architects, Engineers, and Landscape Designers by Anna M. Lewis, which explores the history of women working in traditionally male-dominated fields.

Beginning with the changing cultural sentiments that allowed females to seek work in the construction industry during the Industrial Revolution, Lewis traces how women excelled in many of these new roles, playing an important part in projects across the country.
via Gizmodo

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Image courtesy Women of Steel and Stone

Tags : books, engineering,    0 comments  
Apr 11, 2014

World-first regeneration of a living organ

posted by Larra Morris

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It may not be to quite the same level achieved by Victor Frankenstein, but work by a team from the University of Edinburgh is likely to have significant real-world implications in the field of regenerative medicine. For the first time, the team has successfully regenerated a living organ in mice, not by using a jolt of electricity, but by manipulating DNA.

The organ in question was the thymus, which is located next to the heart and is an integral part of the immune system. In humans, it achieves most of its growth in early life, continuing to then grow slowly until puberty when it slowly begins to shrink for the remainder of a person's life.
via Gizmag

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Image: Shutterstock

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Apr 10, 2014

Brain damage can make people immune to the gambler’s fallacy

posted by Larra Morris

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Although we've known about the gambler’s fallacy for quite some time, scientists are now finding evidence that this fallacy involves the part of our brain known as the insula. In addition to gambling, the inusla is thought to play a role in self-awareness, emotions, and addictions.

Scientists conducted a series of gambling studies (published in PNAS) with patients who suffer from injuries to different parts of the brain, including to the insula. This allowed them to assess the role of different regions in the gambler’s fallacy. 
via Ars Technica

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Image: greengardenvienna 

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Apr 10, 2014

Scientists discover the secret behind zombie plants

posted by Larra Morris

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If the fungal spore outbreak in The Last of Us scared the hell out of you, you'll be doubly terrified to know that there are actual parasites in nature that can turn animals and plants into zombies. In fact, a group of scientists from the John Innes Centre in the UK just figured out how certain parasitic bacteria called phytoplasma turn their plant host into the living dead. You see, when these nefarious bacteria take over, they transform a plant's flowers into leafy shoots, turning petals green and preventing the flowers from producing offspring. Apparently, that's because the parasite has a protein called SAP54, which interacts with the plant so that flowers self-destruct from the inside.
via Engadget

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Image: PLOS Biology

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Apr 10, 2014

Train for surgery using immersive 3D holograms of corpses

posted by Larra Morris

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Computer-generated models are starting to let researchers and students peer into the body without needing a real human stretched out before them. Virtual dissection tables have been built at places like Stanford and the University of Calgary. Now, University of Michigancomputer scientists and biologists have taken the technology another step forward, using projectors, joysticks and 3-D equipment to build a floating holographic human that users can dissect, manipulate, and put back together as they wish.
via Gizmodo

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Image: University of Michigan

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Apr 09, 2014

The Nerdy Engineer

posted by Laura Domela

Here’s how a nerdy engineer became the most famous man on Earth. And how engineering holds the key to progress in the 21st century. This “Engineering Manifesto” was delivered to the National Press Club by Neil Armstrong in February, 2000, and animated by Jorge Cham of PHD Comics.

via Neatorama

Tags : people, space,    0 comments  
Apr 09, 2014

These scarves are woven music, made with patterns from organ punchcards

posted by Larra Morris

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Did you know that the same kind of punched cards control both the jaunty tunes of old timey organs and the warp and weft of a certain kind of textile loom? Glithero, aka British designer Tim Simpson and Dutch designer Sarah van Gameren, bridged the gap for a cool a medium mash-up—and managed to weave music.

In order to realize the project, the duo joined forces with Wil van den Broek and Leon van Leeuwen, master craftsmen who've been experts in their respective fields—weaving and organ book making—for years.

The connection may seem like a stretch at first, but it's actually surprising how well the two processes align. When a punch card is fed through an organ, air passes through the pipes, and the position of the holes determine which note is played. When those same cardboard lengths pass through the loom, the cut-outs establish a pattern, as hooks dip in and out of the open bits.
via Gizmodo

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Image: Glithero

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Apr 09, 2014

Surgical robot snakes its way down the throat

posted by Larra Morris

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When we last heard about the modular snake robot designed by Carnegie Mellon University robotics professor Howie Choset, it had been used to explore an abandoned nuclear power plant. Now, however, a new line of robots based on it are set to explore something a little more confined – the human body.

Known as the Flex System, the surgical version of the snake robot was developed by Choset and two partners through Medrobotics Corp, a Carnegie Mellon spin-off venture.
via Gizmag

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Image: Carnegie Mellon University

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Apr 08, 2014

Nanodot-based smartphone battery that recharges in 30 seconds

posted by Laura Domela

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[Yesterday] at Microsoft’s Think Next symposium in Tel Aviv, Israeli startup StoreDot has demonstrated the prototype of a nanodot-based smartphone battery it claims can fully charge in just under 30 seconds. With the company having plans for mass production, this technology could change the way we interact with portable electronics, and perhaps even help realize the dream of a fast-charging electric car.
via Gizmodo

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Photo: StoreDot

Tags : cell phones, power,    0 comments  
Apr 08, 2014

The most hated browser in the world is finally dead

posted by Laura Domela

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After the release of Windows XP in 2001 and for a few years that followed, Internet Explorer 6 was the biggest, most important browser in the world. And for longer, it has been the buggy browser that's overstayed its welcome. Microsoft announced it would support IE6 through April of this year back in 2009, and today (along with XP and Office 2003) is the last day Microsoft will provide updates. Unless you're an old user who couldn't care less or are somehow nostalgic for a broken web, it's finally time to say goodbye.
via The Verge

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Tags : internet,    0 comments  
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