Oct 20, 2014

3D printing helps build upper jaw prosthetic for cancer patient

posted by Larra Morris

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Using a CT scan to create a 3D reconstruction of the patient's face, Osteo3D printed a replica of the patient's mouth, complete with lower and upper jaw, the defect and his teeth. With the model able to simulate the movements of the joints and open properly, this negated the difficulties inherent in producing a mold from the patient's real-life jaw.

Using the 3D-printed replica as a template, a wax model was produced and adjusted for a snug fit. This was then hardened, fitted with teeth and handed over to the patient. Thanks to the new prosthesis, his chewing, swallowing, speaking and smiling are now said to be much improved.
via Gizmag

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Oct 20, 2014

Vibrating needles could make shots painless by tricking your brain

posted by Larra Morris

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Jabbing a steel needle into your flesh is not ever going to be fun, per se, but scientists have found a way to make it at least hurt a lot less. The trick is actually fooling your nerve cells with a small device that applies pressure and vibration. Here's how it works.

Popular Science reports on a study presented at this week's meeting of the American Society of Anesthesiologists. The 21 volunteers in the study were poked in the shoulder while various amounts of heat, cold, pressure, and vibration were applied. (One caveat, they were jabbed with a plastic needle that doesn't puncture the skin but causes needle-like pain because, well, ethical research standards.) The researchers found that a certain amount of pressure and vibration applied for 20 seconds before the jabbing was the most effective.
via Gizmodo

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Oct 20, 2014

Express yourself in green with Moss Graffiti

posted by Larra Morris

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These beautiful creations are made of moss. Environmentally friendly and without the lasting property damaging nature of painted graffiti, it's a great little addition to ones artistic "bag o' tricks." Keep it moist and it generally thrives (the "moss only grows on north-facing surfaces" thing is a myth). The ingredients necessary to make such a design are listed below. Find detailed instructions at wikihow

3 cups of moss (washed, clean of soil)
2 cups of buttermilk or 2 cups of yogurt (should be plain yogurt)
2 cups of water or beer
1/2 tsp of sugar
corn syrup (optional)
a blender (that you probably don’t want to use other than for this)
via Neatorama

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Image: Anna Garforth 

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Oct 17, 2014

Viral examples of human stupidity turned into brilliant organ donor ads

posted by Laura Domela

Belgium-based ad agency Duval-Guillaume has a new clever campaign using the kind of stupid people who risk their lives stupidly and post it online to raise awareness about organ donation.

via Sploid

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Oct 17, 2014

Can science fiction spur science innovation?

posted by Laura Domela

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Does science fiction help us innovate? According to Arizona State University’s strange and strangely compelling Center for Science and the Imagination, the answer is, absolutely yes. The Center (yes, it’s abbreviated CSI) has joint projects with organizations like IBM and the World Bank, and it was founded on the premise that imagination is an essential component of our society’s greatest scientific and technological accomplishments. If we want to do big things, then we need to rev up our imaginations—with science fiction.
via Pacific Standard

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(Photo: iurii/Shutterstock) 

Oct 17, 2014

Parrot with British accent missing for four years, returns speaking Spanish

posted by Laura Domela

When last seen four years ago, Nigel had a distinctively crisp British accent.

But when Nigel returned home this month, the African gray parrot was bilingual, with a slight Panamanian accent and the ability to ask "¡Qué pasó?"

As perplexing, the parrot mysteriously talked about someone named "Larry."

The bird and his British accent disappeared from Torrance about four years ago. And then, just as suddenly, Nigel recently reappeared out of nowhere.
via Los Angeles Times

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Oct 17, 2014

Glass sculptures that look like knitted yarn

posted by Larra Morris

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Artist Carol Milne creates remarkable glass sculptures that look like knitted yarn. She achieves the effect by knitting with pliable wax, which she then turns into a heat resistant mold. She pours molten glass into the mold to create the final sculpture. The process is described in detail in Carol Milne Knitted Glass: How Does She Do That? by Steve Isaacson. Milne’s work is part of the ongoing exhibition “Reaching Beyond: The Northwest Designer Craftsmen at 60″ at the Whatcom Museum in Bellingham, Washington through January 4, 2015.
via Laughing Squid

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