Miro Ilomäki

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Gene Machine

A pipe that copies DNA using the heat of a lightbulb.<p>Biology's equivalent of an office copier is a PCR machine. PCR, short for polymerase chain reaction, is now a staple in crime-scene forensics, heredity tests, and organism hijacking. It's a mind-boggling feat. Among billions of base pairs that …

A Cannabinoid That Looks Like THC Could Be Key To Diagnosing PTSD

Researchers have pinpointed a set of biological markers that could help diagnose PTSD--and, eventually, treat it.<p>A molecular imaging study has pinpointed a set of biological markers that could help diagnose post-traumatic stress disorder more accurately, and might even lead to a pharmacological …

8 Things You Should Know About Electric Cars

Sometime in the next few weeks, the 100,000th plug-in electric car will be sold in the U.S.<p>But they're still mostly a mystery to the average new-car buyer, and there are a few key principles that get shared over and over again.<p>Here they are, boiled down for easy consumption: eight things you need …

FYI: Which Emotion Is The Hardest To Fake?

Unlike the commonly deployed social smile, distressed expressions–anger, fear, sadness, and occasionally surprise–prove much more difficult to display on command.<p>We've all done our fair share of faking it. Whether it's a canned excited response when that one particularly eccentric aunt gives you a …

Electrical Brain Stimulation Can Help You Learn Math

Well, it's one way of getting better at math.<p>What if a painless zap to the brain could improve your ability to do math? Would you do it?<p>It may sound weird, but a new, small study of 25 people has shown that something like this may work. Researchers from the U.K. and Austria found that something …

Google And NASA Team Up In Quantum Artificial Intelligence Lab

Why not use a crazy sci-fi technology (quantum computing) to solve a classic crazy sci-fi problem (artificial intelligence)?<p>Google announced today a partnership with NASA and D-Wave to launch a lab to solve artificial intelligence problems with the aid of quantum computing.<p>Quantum computing is in …

Concept Skyscraper Generates Its Own Energy, Looks Like A Toilet Brush

The, erm, splashy future of skyscrapers<p>In the future, all buildings will resemble massive toilet brushes. Perhaps not, but that's the net-zero energy future of skyscrapers envisioned by Belatchew Arkitekter in an idea called STRAWSCRAPER which, in spite of the toilet brush comparison, is actually …

The First Round Of Apps For Google Glass Is Here

Our first clue at how people might actually use Google Glass in the real world.<p>Google announced today at the I/O developer conference in California that the first wave of apps, aside from the few that had already been announced, are here.<p>Google Glass is a first-generation beta product. The way …

Giving White People The Illusion Of Darker Skin Makes Them Less Racist

A change of skin tone can bring a change of heart, apparently.<p>An optical illusion can change the implicit biases of Caucasian people against people with darker skin, according to a study published in the August 2013 edition of <i>Cognition</i>.<p>The research, a collaboration between Royal Holloway University …

This Bacterium Can Do Division, Compute Logarithms And Take Square Roots

MIT researchers engineered bacterial cells to function as living calculators.<p>A group of engineers from MIT have created analog calculators out of living cells, according to a paper published online in <i>Nature</i> yesterday. By tweaking the genes of bacterial cells, the researchers were able to create …

First American Mission To Sample An Asteroid Gets Green Light

OSIRIS-REx will scoop up a couple of ounces of dirt from the asteroid Bennu and bring it back to Earth.<p>Earth-bound scientists are on track to get their hands on asteroid soil, straight from the source, in 2023. An asteroid-sampling mission, planned for launch in 2016, is moving into development, …

8 Of The Year's Most Oddly Gorgeous Science Images

A water slide for worms, the glorious C. instagram, and more<p><i>Click here to enter the gallery</i><p>Is this the era of <i>C. instagram</i>? That's the clever name of a cellphone photo one undergraduate took of a plate crawling with <i>C. elegans</i> (it kind of rhymes). <i>Caenorhabditis elegans</i> are microscopic worms that …

The Week In Numbers: Fire In Space, The First Cloned Human Embryo, And More

<b>1,350 light-years</b>: the distance to a "fiery ribbon" stretching across the Orion Nebula, captured recently by a submillimeter-wavelength camera inside Chile's Atacama Pathfinder Experiment telescope. The ribbon is actually a glow given off by cold interstellar dust at wavelengths too long for human …

The Unsuccessful Quest For A Universal Language

Within science circles, trying to come up with a new universal language was a trendy past-time in the 17th Century. Even the man who discovered gravity, Sir Isaac Newton, took a stab at it. Arika Okrent, editor-at-large at TheWeek.com, talks about its failure to catch on with Weekends on <i>All Things</i> …

Linguistics

How Google Will Pwn the Gaming Market

I used to mock Apple years ago because they advertised Apple as the fun alternative to stodgy, boring Windows.<p>The idea that Apple was fun and Microsoft was not was a misdirection at best. Windows was the biggest games platform and Xbox was the best console game (in my opinion). Apple had no games …

Retrogaming

Google Glass Year In Review

It’s been a little over a year since Google started teasing something it called “Project Glass.” The futuristic, wearable computer that would change the way that you interact with the world was nothing more than a series of rumors for months before it was “formally introduced” in April 2012. Not …

Call of Duty: Ghosts clip offers a brief look at the game in progress, teases reveal

Infinity Ward released a brief teaser for <i>Call of Duty: Ghosts</i> that features a look at the game in an early design state.<p>The video, which you can watch here, was posted via Vine and loops approximately five seconds of footage. Following rumors and a leaked promotional poster, <i>Call of Duty: Ghosts</i> was …

Ubisoft confident in Nintendo Wii U's future

Ubisoft believes its upcoming titles will attract more gamers to the Wii U and is confident that Nintendo will take steps to ensure that the console is successful, a Ubisoft spokesperson told GamesIndustry International.<p>"As with any new console, it takes some time to grow an established base," the …