Stefan Valianu

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Sheer genius: Silicon Valley as a separate state

I'm going to give you a choice.<p>You can have all the nerds or all the wine.<p>Come on, you've only got 30 seconds to decide.<p>No, I haven't already hit the Christmas cabernet franc. Instead, I've merely been bathing in the frank proposal to split California into six separate states.<p>As TechCrunch reported …

Anti-ageing compound set for human trials after turning clock back for mice

Australian and US researchers hope an anti-ageing compound could be trialled on humans as early as next year, following a key breakthrough that saw the ageing process reversed in mice.<p>The study, involving Harvard University and the University of NSW, discovered a way of restoring the efficiency of …

Atheer Labs Launches Pre-Orders for its 3D AR Headset

3D heads-up display platform Atheer Labs has opened up pre-orders for developer and early adopter editions of its hardware through a new Indiegogo crowdfunding campaign.<p>The Atheer Developer Kit (ADK) will cost $850 and comes as an independent unit with a wired attachment that goes in your …

Why the 9-to-5 Day Is So Tough on Creative Workers

"Knowledge workers" tend to be more unfocused in both the early morning and mid-afternoon. Why force them to work when they're least productive?<p>Today, workers are putting in increasingly more hours—so much so that the 40-hour week has become a relic of the past. But pushing employees to clock up …

4 Things to Consider for Space Warfare, Such as How Bullets Fire in Space

As we develop plans for space tourism and, perhaps, colonization in the not-too-distant future, space warfare may also be on the horizon.<p>Here’s a …

NASA’s 6-Foot Valkyrie Humanoid Robot Will Rescue You From Buildings

Remember Atlas, the amazing and slightly spine-chilling android that Boston Dynamics has entered into DARPA’s Robotics Challenge as a kind of future super-soldier? He’s got competition. Bigger competition, from a much friendlier source: NASA. Meet “R5” Valkyrie, the 6-foot-2 inch-tall humanoid …

Alien Planet Found: Gigantic Exoplanet Much Bigger Than Any Known Planet

The alien planet that was just found by astronomers is gigantic and bigger than any planetary body in the solar system.<p>The exoplanet, dubbed HD …

Experts ask the US for more help finding extraterrestrial life

Representatives from NASA, the Massachusetts Institute of Technology, and the Library of Congress testified before a House committee in Washington today to discuss the possibility of life in our solar system and neighboring galaxies, and the message was clear: more money needs to spent in the …

Congressional hearing on search for extraterrestrial life – live updates

Summary<p><b>The hearing has wrapped.</b> No conclusive evidence as to the existence or not of extraterrestrial life emerged today on Capitol Hill. But as multiple committee members were at pains to mention, the hearing was more fun and informative than the usual fare. Here's a summary of where things</b> …

Android Creator Andy Rubin's Next Big Google Project: Robots

Amazon’s drone delivery experiment headlined the news earlier this week, but it seems that the next generation of technology is continuing to amaze. Google has revealed that it is working to create a new generation of robots, the New York Times reports.<p>The man behind Google’s robotics effort is no …

Consumer drones are coming, and they will change everything

I recently spent a week flying the DJI Phantom 2 Vision quadcopter. It’s a 2.5 pound drone with an attached camera and easy flight controls, and I …

Delivery drones are coming: Jeff Bezos promises half-hour shipping with Amazon Prime Air

Jeff Bezos is nothing if not a showman. Amazon's CEO loves a good reveal, and took the opportunity afforded by a <i>60 Minutes</i> segment to show off his company's latest creation: drones that can deliver packages up to 5 pounds to your house in less than half an hour. They're technically octocopters, as …

Japanese firm plans 250 mile-wide solar panel belt around Moon

A Japanese firm announces its innovative solution to the nation's energy problems - a 250 mile-wide belt of solar panels on the moon<p>A Japanese construction firm is proposing to solve the well-documented energy problems facing Japan - and ultimately the entire planet - by turning the moon into a …

Cash for climate change: poor countries want payback for pollution they didn't cause

At UN climate talks in Warsaw, the contentious issue of climate-change compensation divides nations<p>In Burkina Faso, extreme droughts are killing off livestock and devastating crops. In Micronesia, rising water levels have spurred residents to dismantle ancient ruins for the construction of …

‘Contactless’ payment to reach 250M cards next year (U.S.A. is last, as usual)

Mobile payments via NFC from a digital wallet on a smartphone might be the sexiest area of payments right now, but the space that is actually seeing traction and adoption is contactless cards — which will hit 250 million in 2014.<p>The market leaders? Australia, Canada, Poland, the UK, and, of course, …

Have at it, programmers: IBM makes Watson available via API

IBM didn’t have to flaunt its debatable cloud dominance over Amazon Web Services on the sides of public buses if it wanted to upstage the cloud …

The future of work is rich in technology and drawbacks

We check e-mail as soon as we reach home, and sneak a peek at our inboxes along the way. We respond to calls, texts, and messages even while on vacation. At work, we use Cisco Telepresence or Skype to confer with colleagues all over the world. Companies often allow employees to work from home for …

The cars we’ll be driving in the world of 2050

What will the cars of 2050 look like? What will power them? Will they even have a steering wheel? Sven Beiker peers under the bonnet of tomorrow’s autos.<p>Car companies have recently been telling us what the car of 2020 will be like: autonomous is one word used, electric is another, and it will be …

General Motors

Why hospitals will soon sequence the genes of every single patient

After studying cases and training for years in medical school, doctors are able to identify patterns in a patient’s test results, compare them to that of a healthy individual and come up with a diagnostic and treatment. Better yet, they know how to adapt that treatment based on the patient’s age, …

This Man Thinks He Can 3-D Print An Entire House

Scientists already are working on 3-D printing organs. If we can do that, a house should be easy.<p>While enthusiasts believe that there will eventually be a 3-D printer in every home, University of Southern California professor Berokh Khoshnevis has spent the last decade working on a far bigger …

3D

Robo-Friends: The Emotional Distance Between Humans And Robots Is Shrinking

As robots advance, it’s going to get harder and harder for people to remain detached.<p>Roombas are basically extremely smart vacuum cleaners, but to some owners they start to feel like pets or friends–a phenomenon investigated by one of my favorite accounts on Twitter, @SelfAwareROOMBA, where you can …

Bored? Hunt for dark matter in your spare time

Astronomers hunting for the invisible stuff that holds galaxies together are making progress by turning to the wisdom of the crowd.<p>It is the next “big hunt” in modern physics. Following confirmation of the existence of the Higgs Boson earlier this year, physicists now have their eyes on dark …

Dark Matter

Bird Flu Strain Jumps From Animals To People For The First Time

H6N1 bird flu has been identified in a woman in Taiwan.<p>A common strain of bird flu that had previously only infected poultry has reached what's reported to be its first human patient, according to a study released in the <i>Lancet Respiratory Medicine</i> today.<p>Earlier this spring, the Taiwanese woman came …

In A Landmark Legal Decision, Google Wins The Right To Scan Pretty Much Every Book Ever

The decision was formally made that Google Books can continue its efforts to digitally capture around 20 million books without legal repercussions, reports GigaOM.<p>Judge Denny Chin made the ruling based on the fact that Google's digitization of the source material is "highly transformative" and …

WikiLeaks publishes secret draft of Trans-Pacific Partnership treaty

WikiLeaks has published a leaked draft of a secret international trade agreement that could create stricter laws governing digital copyright and freedom of speech. The leaked chapter focuses on intellectual property rights, and is part of a broader agreement called the Trans-Pacific Partnership …

Ten of the world's most mind-blowing landscapes

Gazing at a remarkable view for the first time is one of travel’s greatest thrills – and these 10 landscapes are among the most mind-blowing we’ve ever seen.<p>Yellowstone National Park, Wyoming, USA<p>Yellowstone National Park has an embarrassment of astonishing sights, from the thundering waterfalls of …

National Parks

Google says its driverless cars are safer than you

After several years and thousands of miles of testing autonomous cars in California and Nevada, Google finally has something to show for its work – other than driving a blind man to get a taco. According to <i>Technology Review</i>, Chris Urmson, director of Google's self-driving car program, says that …

James Dyson Award-Winning Robotic Arm Can Make You Superhuman

A battery-powered robotic arm designed to give humans a power boost was declared winner of the 2013 James Dyson Award. The Titan Arm, devised by mechanical engineer students from the University of Pennsylvania, can help people lift an extra 40 pounds – or help those with back injuries rebuild and …

Hacking our senses to boost learning power

Some schools are pumping music, noises and fragrances into the classroom to see if it improves exam results – could it work?<p>What did your school smell like? Was it noisy or peaceful?<p>It might not seem important, but a growing body of research suggests that smells and sounds can have an impact on …