Absolute vodka produced this stunning CGI / live action hybrid commercial featuring a race between three robot dogs.
The cavernous nerve is often damaged during surgery for prostate cancer leading to erectile dysfunction (ED). Researchers previously found that the protein that goes by the name of sonic hedgehog (SHH) is critical if this nerve is to be regenerated post-operatively. The same team has now investigated the issue from a different perspective: might sonic [...]
An international research team has created unique photoluminescent nanoparticles that shine clearly through more than 3 centimeters of biological tissue -- a depth that makes them a promising tool for deep-tissue optical bioimaging.
Though optical imaging is a robust and inexpensive technique commonly used in biomedical applications, current technologies lack the ability to look deep into tissue, the researchers said.
Nothing puts a skip in your brisk autumnal step like the the announcement of 2012 MacArthur 'genius' Fellows, which provides an inspiring and concise account of twenty-five veritably brilliant individuals working on daring and creative projects from filmmaking to neurobiology to instrument bow-making.
In the excitement of the moment, I'd like to highlight one of this year's MacArthur Fellows, Olivier Guyon, an astronomer and optical physicist who has proposed a cool investment of some of his no-strings-attached MacArthur grant: crowdsourcing the planet hunt.
Olivier Guyon-- Planet Hunter.
Image courtesy of The John D. & Catherine T. MacArthur Foundation.One of the prime methods of detecting new planets is to lie in wait, watching a single star in the sky. "If we wait long enough," Guyon says, "a planet will pass in front of its star and the light we collect from the star will dim." Since planets are in orbit, this dimming will be a periodic, repeated signal. The dimming caused by a planet eclipsing its star is a strong enough signal that amateur astronomers can actually detect it without special equipment. The challenge, Guyon explains, is that there are a huge number of stars to monitor.
Here's Guyon's big idea: encourage everyone with a love of exploration and the starry sky to participate in tracking stars and collecting and sharing their data. "One of the projects I'm looking forward to working on with this fellowship," Guyon says, "is to start a network of astronomers, amateur astronomers, schools, and the broader public to collect and make all this data available." He's done his research too. Using just a Cannon DSLR camera and the right software, Guyon says you can take images of the night's sky and recover the brightness of many of the stars simultaneously. Using a commercial camera, anyone can be a planet hunter, detecting the eclipse of a planet crossing its star. "People can participate in science more easily than they think," says Guyon, "curiosity is the driving force behind all of this."
Meanwhile, if you're interested in getting your astronomer skills up to snuff, check out the Top iPhone Apps for the Amateur Astronomer, from Discovery News.
But the biggest crowdsourcing experiment aside, Guyon's already brought serious advances to astronomy. Olivier Guyon spends his days designing telescopes to hunt terrestrial exoplanets--earth-like planets that orbit around bright stars, like our Sun, but located outside our solar system.
One of Guyon's major contributions to the study of terrestrial exoplanets was his design of a new telescope sensitive enough to image exoplanets and characterize features of the planet, such as the planet's distance from its star and the size of the planet. The size and location of the planet relative to its star determines whether it could sustain life, says Guyon. "There is a habitable zone around each star," he says, "where if you put a planet like the earth, you could sustain life similar to that on earth." In our solar system, the Earth is within the habitable zone, while Venus is a little too close and Mars is a little too far away. Similarly, the size of the planet can determine whether or not it might have a habitable atmosphere. According to Guyon, astronomers are looking for planets they call "rocky planets" that are no smaller than mars and no larger than twice the diameter of earth. On planets smaller than Mars, gravity won't be strong enough to retain the atmosphere, while on planets much much larger than Earth, the atmosphere becomes too thick.
Capturing direct images of exoplanets (rather than studying the change in light from its star) is a feat of optical acrobatics. The trick of the trade is to block the very bright light radiating from star in order to capture images of the smaller, dimmer planets. Guyon's telescope is a big advancement from traditional telescopes because it makes use of all of the light the telescope can collect.
When astronomers use a normal telescope to image a star, the incoming light produces a bulls-eye diffraction pattern called an Airy pattern. The bright side rings of the bulls eye obscures the much dimmer light coming from the planets that astronomers are trying to detect. In a telescope, these characteristic Airy diffraction rings come from the interference pattern produced by the light from the edges of the incoming beam.
“Diversifications in primate vocalization, including human speech, are believed to reflect evolutionary modifications in vocal anatomy and physiology. Gibbon song is acoustically unique, comprising loud, melodious, penetrating pure tone-like calls. In a white-handed gibbon, Hylobates lar, the fundamental frequency (f(0) ) of song sounds is amplified distinctively from the higher harmonics in normal air. In a helium-enriched atmosphere, f(0) does not shift, but it is significantly suppressed and 2f(0) is emphasized. This implies that the source is independent of the resonance filter of the supralaryngeal vocal tract (SVT) in gibbons, in contrast to musical wind instruments, in which the filter primarily determines f(0) . Acoustic simulation further supported that gibbons’ singing is produced analogously to professional human soprano singing, in which a precise tuning of the first formant (F(1) ) of the SVT to f(0) amplifies exclusively the f(0) component of the source. Thus, in gibbons, as in humans, dynamic control over the vocal tract configuration, rather than anatomical modifications, has been a dominant factor in determining call structure. The varied dynamic movements were adopted in response to unique social and ecological pressures in gibbons, allowing monogamous gibbons to produce pure-tonal ...
Gary Hug used his Shoemaker NEO grant provided camera to find 2012 SY49 which flew by Earth at about two lunar distances last week. The tens of meters wide asteroid is a low-probability possible Earth impactor in the future.
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Researchers at Rice University are designing transparent, two-terminal, three-dimensional computer memories on flexible sheets that show promise for electronics and sophisticated heads-up displays.
The technique based on the switching properties of silicon oxide, a breakthrough discovery by Rice in 2008, was reported today in the online journal Nature Communications.
A new type of antibiotic can effectively treat an antibiotic-resistant infection by disarming instead of killing the bacteria that cause it. Researchers report their findings in the October 2 issue of mBio®, the online open-access journal of the American Society for Microbiology. "Traditionally, people have tried to find antibiotics that rapidly kill bacteria.
Together with the Organizing Committee and Extended MOS-AK/GSA TPC Committee, we have pleasure to invite to the 5th International MOS-AK/GSA Workshop in San Francisco, Dec. 12, 2012 http://www.mos-ak.org/sanfrancisco_2012/ The event will be organized in timeframe of the IEDM and CMC meetings.
swissnex San Francisco730 Montgomery StreetSan Francisco, CA 94111, USA
The MOS-AK/GSA Modeling Working Group, a global compact modeling standardization forum, has delivered 10th subsequent compact modeling workshop which was organized on Sept. 21, 2012 as an integral part of the ESSDERC/ESSCIRC Conference in Bordeaux (F). The event was organized receiving full organization sponsorship provided by the leading industrial partners including Agilent Technologies (USA), LFoundry (D), CSEM (CH), STMicroelectronics (F), and AMS (A). The French Branch of IEEE EDS, FP7 COMON Project, Eurotraining and MOSIS Services were among the workshop technical program promoters. More than 50 international academic researchers and modeling engineers attended three sessions to hear 16 technical compact modeling talks and poster presentations.
The workshop's three sessions focused on the nanowire TFET and organic TFT technologies, advanced compact modeling for analog/RF IC design application, computer-aided design (CAD), EDA simulations highlighting recent developments of Verilog-A compact models and its standardization. The 10th MOS-AK/GSA ESSDERC/ESSCIRC workshop was opened by fifth invited female researchers highlighting active women contribution to compact modeling R&D. Afterward invited international modeling experts presented their recent modeling work. The session oral and poster presentations are available for download at http://mos-ak.org/bordeaux/
The MOS-AK/GSA Modeling Working Group coordinates several upcoming modeling events: