Michael Aichner

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15 ways to stay focused all day, according to scientists

What was I doing again?<p>We've all had days where we can't seem to focus, asking that question too many times to count. For some of us, those days are …

The Desktop Gene Machine

All I want for Christmas is an organism I can make my own<p>The momentum of developments in bioengineering has left life scientists breathless. CRISPR, the gene editing tech that has been adopted almost universally among biotech labs, has been stealing all the headlines with talk of designer babies. …

Genetic Engineering

Computers Are Closer To Copying The Way Humans Learn

Training artificial intelligence to write letters<p>The gold standard of artificial intelligence is a computer that can learn the same way we do as humans. For example, if you see just one toothbrush and know its use, it’s pretty easy to identify other toothbrushes. If it’s long, thin, has little …

Artificial Intelligence

What Are Hoverboards And Why Do They Explode?

Popular Science investigates the self-balancing scooter<p>Beware of what you buy this Christmas—it could blow up in your face. Hoverboards, more accurately described as self-balancing scooters, are one of the most popular holiday gifts this year. Ebay reportedly sold more than 5,000 units on Black …

Elon Musk Doesn't Expect He'll Live To See Humans On Mars

At meeting of the American Geophysical Union, Musk chats freely<p>Today at the fall meeting of the American Geophysical Union, the hottest lecture was a forum with Elon Musk, inventor and potential supervillain. Excitement was high, and the line to get in was absolutely massive.<p>Luckily, <i>Popular Science</i> …

This Professor Calculated The True Cost of Destroying The Death Star

The Star Wars superweapon is an economic catastrophe as well as a planetary one<p>Everyone, from President Obama down to a lowly moisture farmer on Tatooine can agree that planet-destroying weapons are bad news. Barring a few Imperial hold-outs, it’s clear that not only is the Death Star massively …

Economics

The U.S. Government Is Betting $28 Million That We Can Replicate The Brain

The great reverse engineering expedition<p>We've talked a lot about making a computer that works like the mammalian brain.<p>The U.S. government is now betting $28 million dollars that all these projects are wrong.<p>A series of three grants snagged by Harvard University from Intelligence Advanced Research …

The Brain

Turn Your Smartphone Into A Solar Panel

And let the device recharge itself<p>Instead of searching for an outlet to keep your phone alive, what if all you needed was some sunshine? An MIT startup has created a transparent coating that transforms surfaces into solar panels.<p>The Trick<p>Typically solar panels soak up photons from the sun’s rays …

Clean Energy

This Device Reads Your Mind Through Your Veins

And it's the size of a matchstick<p>In recent years, scientists have been developing new and creative ways to put electronics in the brain. These devices are useful for paralyzed patients to control prosthetic limbs with their minds, to help locked-in patients communicate with the outside world, or to …

New Graphene Lens Could Help Computers Beam Data at The Speed of Light

This is so cool.<p>Researchers have used graphene to create a lens that’s so flat, it’s 300 times thinner than a sheet of paper and weighs just 1 …

Would you bet against sex robots? AI 'could leave half of world unemployed'

Scientist Moshe Vardi tells colleagues that change could come within 30 years, with few professions immune to effect of advanced artificial intelligence<p>‘Public alienation undermines scientific efforts to improve lives’ ‘Rogue scientists’ could exploit gene editing technology, experts warn<p>Machines …

Artificial Intelligence

A Mammal's Brain Has Been Cryonically Frozen And Recovered For The First Time

Austin Powers called: he wants his movie plot back.<p>For the first time, researchers have cryonically frozen a whole mammalian brain and recovered it …

Early Shifts of Brain Metabolism by Caloric Restriction Preserve White Matter Integrity and Long-Term Memory in Aging Mice

Janet Guo,1,2 Vikas Bakshi,1,2 and Ai-Ling Lin1,2,3,*<p>Abstract<p>Preservation of brain integrity with age is highly associated with lifespan …

Researchers discover new phase of boron nitride and a new way to create pure c-BN

Researchers at North Carolina State University have discovered a new phase of the material boron nitride (Q-BN), which has potential applications for …

Practice makes perfect: Switching between languages pays off

Bilingual toddlers who obtain more practice in language switching are better at certain types of problem solving<p>Montreal, February 3, 2016 -- It's …

Energy-friendly chip can perform powerful artificial-intelligence tasks

In recent years, some of the most exciting advances in artificial intelligence have come courtesy of convolutional neural networks, large virtual …

Artificial Intelligence

Congress Wants NASA To Create A Deep Space Habitat By 2018

The next big step towards sending humans to Mars<p>NASA may dream of sending humans to Mars in the coming decades, but the fact remains that nobody's really sure how we'll survive the journey or set up camp on the red planet.<p>The Orion spacecraft that will drive astronauts to Mars has a diameter that's …

Space Science

Computers learn how to spot hidden facial expressions

Machines are good at spotting obvious emotions like smiles, but they're not so hot at detecting the extremely brief microexpressions that reveal when people are covering up their true feelings. They may have a keener eye in the future, though: researchers have developed a computer vision algorithm …

Pop-up sensor would give robot surgeons a sense of touch

Robotic surgery is no longer the stuff of science fiction. However, these robots can't really feel their way around -- the need for super-small mechanisms rules out existing approaches to touch. That's where Harvard researchers might come to save the day. They've developed a pop-up sensor whose …

Quantum computers a step closer to reality after silicon coding breakthrough

In the race to build the first functional quantum computer, Australian researchers at the University of NSW find coding possible in silicon<p>Australian researchers have demonstrated that a quantum version of computer code can be written on a silicon microchip with the highest level of accuracy ever …

Quantum Computing

Taxi owners sue New York City as Uber 'eviscerates' their industry

New York taxi owners and the lenders behind some of them are suing New York City and its Taxi and Limousine Commission, saying the proliferation of Uber is destroying their businesses and threatening their livelihoods.<p>Uber: why the world’s biggest ride-sharing company has no drivers<p>Read more<p>The …

Transportation

Scientists build atom-scale sub that moves at 'breakneck' speeds

There are still no nanobots plying our bloodstreams, seeking and destroying cancer and other diseases. However, scientists at Rice University have just built a molecule-scale "submarine," so that's a pretty positive step towards "Fantastic Voyage." Mades at the same lab that developed "nanocars," …

Lasers cool liquid for the first time

The technique, which was able to drop a liquid's temperature by 20 degrees Celsius, could eventually be used for everyday tasks like refrigerating water.<p>It's true that lasers are often used as heating implements, but a less common use is the cooling of gases and crystals. Now for the first time, a …

University of Washington

You can now reserve Atheer’s high-end augmented reality glasses for the workplace

As a society, we’re becoming increasingly enamored with augmented and virtual reality. Over the past few years, at least a few companies have made contributions to the field, including Google, Microsoft, and Facebook-owned Oculus. Today, Atheer is taking the next step in bringing its augmented …

Augmented Reality

Microsoft HoloLens to provide AR demos in Volvo showrooms

Microsoft and Volvo have joined forces, thankfully not for the sake of creating a gaudy car-themed phone, but to equip the automaker's showrooms with HoloLens headsets. Starting next year, Volvo will be able to showcase things not usually possible to demo instantly and indoors -- say, its cars' …

Let's Talk About Anonymous Versus ISIS

Let’s talk about Anonymous versus the self-identified Islamic State.<p>Last week the former—a dispersed and mercurial hacker outfit—declared “cyberwar” …

Scientists create quantum entanglement at room temperature

Quantum entanglement, where two particles are inextricably linked, is a real thing. However, creating that odd behavior has been extremely difficult so far -- you have to cool things down to near absolute zero to pull it off on a significant scale. Or rather, you did. Researchers have successfully …

This Smartphone App Sends Your Loved Ones Your Messages After You Die

Want to be extra creepy? You can even have them location-tagged, so they pop up when your heirs visit certain locations–like your grave.<p>A new app lets you send messages after you die. The web and smartphone based service, SafeBeyond, allows you to line up short messages, texts, photos, and videos, …

Apps

New App Visualizes Radio Waves From Cell Towers and Satellites Around You

Justin Sullivan—Getty Images<p>Ralph Morse—The LIFE Images Collection/Getty Images<p>Ted Thai—The LIFE Picture Collection/Getty Images<p>Kristy …