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Sep 21, 2015

Crystallizing the DNA nanotechnology dream: Scientists have designed the first large DNA crystals

Posted by in categories: biotech/medical, chemistry, computing, engineering, materials, nanotechnology

DNA has garnered attention for its potential as a programmable material platform that could spawn entire new and revolutionary nanodevices in computer science, microscopy, biology, and more. Researchers have been working to master the ability to coax DNA molecules to self assemble into the precise shapes and sizes needed in order to fully realize these nanotechnology dreams.

For the last 20 years, scientists have tried to design large DNA crystals with precisely prescribed depth and complex features – a design quest just fulfilled by a team at Harvard’s Wyss Institute for Biologically Inspired Engineering. The team built 32 DNA crystals with precisely-defined depth and an assortment of sophisticated three-dimensional (3D) features, an advance reported in Nature Chemistry.

The team used their “DNA-brick self-assembly” method, which was first unveiled in a 2012 Science publication when they created more than 100 3D complex nanostructures about the size of viruses. The newly-achieved periodic crystal structures are more than 1000 times larger than those discrete DNA brick structures, sizing up closer to a speck of dust, which is actually quite large in the world of DNA nanotechnology.

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Sep 21, 2015

This is the future of Photoshop and it feels like magic

Posted by in category: futurism

Adobe has made a video with its vision for the future of its tablet-based graphic applications. Photoshop, Illustrator, Premiere… it is really amazing, almost unbelievable—borderline magical, really. Check it out.

If they achieve a fraction of what is show here, I would be happy. I have no doubt that all the features will happen eventually, but I want them all right now.

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Sep 21, 2015

Elliptic Labs powers up ultrasound for touchless gesturing

Posted by in categories: energy, entertainment, mobile phones

Touchless gestures powered by ultrasound has become a mark of distinction for Elliptic Labs. The company has new “Multi Layer Interaction” technology designed to bring users intuitive device interactions.

Without touching the , the person’s hand moves towards the smartphone, the screen lights up and information is displayed. As the person continues moving the hand closer, different information is revealed. With users constantly, frequently, eagerly reaching for their devices throughout the day, Elliptic Labs aims to make a difference in its easy and fast way to get information, from playing games to navigating maps, to using social media, to watching videos. A promotional video says the user can interact above, in front, underneath, double-tapping anywhere around the device, easily turning the device on and off as well. There is an SDK kit for applications. How it works: Ultrasound signals sent through the air from speakers integrated in smartphones and tablets bounce against the hand and are recorded by microphones integrated in the devices. As such, the recognizes and uses them to move objects on the screen, similar to how bats use echolocation to navigate.

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Sep 21, 2015

ELON MUSK: In 5 Years You’ll Be Able To Get In Your Car, Go To Sleep, And Wake Up At Your Destination

Posted by in categories: Elon Musk, neuroscience, transportation

Autopilot is a good start.

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Sep 21, 2015

Gigantic Energy-Generating Waterfall Skyscraper Could Power the 2016 Rio Olympics

Posted by in categories: solar power, sustainability

The Solar City Tower, designed by RAFAA, includes a bank of solar panels as well as pumped water storage to create energy during both the day and night for use in the Olympic Village.

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Sep 21, 2015

Algolux tackles optics challenges in smartphones

Posted by in categories: electronics, mobile phones

Algolux is a company aiming to tackle blurring problems through computational optics. Algolux said its efforts are presently focused on smartphones and tablets. One can appreciate how this company sees their technology attracting interest in this way. The technology allows for lens designs to be less complex, smaller, lighter and cheaper which would be especially interesting in smartphone imaging where space is at a premium, said Connect, a website on mobile photography technology. The company tells site visitors that “Our computational optics enable better pictures, thinner cameras and cheaper optics.” The technology allows manufacturers’ devices to capture clearer pictures with their existing equipment, including in low-light conditions. Also, the quantity and quality of optical elements needed are diminished; manufacturers can obtain desirable results at a lower cost.

Traditional optics have hit a wall, according to the company. Their size can no longer be reduced significantly for cameras inside thin devices such as smartphones and tablets.”Lenses in smart devices are small and plastic (for the most part), and do not have the quality of a full-sized optical system, especially for low-light and night-time pictures. As sensors and pixels get smaller, the probability of blur and other aberrations in pictures increases.”

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Sep 21, 2015

Atom-Sized Construction Could Shrink Future Gadgets

Posted by in categories: drones, materials, military, particle physics, robotics/AI, transportation

The U.S. military doesn’t just build big, scary tanks and giant warplanes; it’s also interested in teeny, tiny stuff. The Pentagon’s latest research project aims to improve today’s technologies by shrinking them down to microscopic size.

The recently launched Atoms to Product (A2P) program aims to develop atom-size materials to build state-of-the-art military and consumer products. These tiny manufacturing methods would work at scales 100,000 times smaller than those currently being used to build new technologies, according to the Defense Advanced Research Projects Agency, or DARPA.

The tiny, high-tech materials of the future could be used to build things like hummingbird-size drones and super-accurate (and super-small) atomic clocks — two projects already spearheaded by DARPA. [Humanoid Robots to Flying Cars: 10 Coolest DARPA Projects].

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Sep 21, 2015

Chemists create ‘assembly-line’ for organic molecules

Posted by in category: biotech/medical

(Phys.org) —Scientists at the University of Bristol have developed a process where reagents are added to a growing carbon chain with extraordinary high fidelity and precise orientation, thereby controlling the conformation of the molecule so that it adopts a helical or linear shape. The process can be likened to a molecular assembly line.

Nature has evolved highly sophisticated machinery for . One of the most beautiful examples is its machinery for the synthesis of polyketides, a very important class of molecules due to their broad spectrum of biological activities (for example antibiotic, antitumor, antifungal, antiparasitic).

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Sep 21, 2015

German Scientists Create Lithium Ion Battery that Can Charge an Electric Car for 27 Years

Posted by in categories: energy, transportation

German scientists have developed technology that makes lithium-ion batteries last for 10,000 charging and discharging cycles while still retaining 85% of their original capacity.

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Sep 21, 2015

Intel wireless charging in a bowl coming sooner than later

Posted by in categories: electronics, energy, mobile phones

When vendors send out announcements of long battery life and juicing strategies for electronic gadgets, interest is assured; the bad news is that interest is assured because consumers are still eagerly looking for less bother and less time needed to keep their smartphones and other mobile gadgets up and running. Intel is aware of the challenge, what with wearables on tap in an assortment of form factors. To be sure, Intel would like to be in the frontlines of technology giants providing the buying public with finer solutions.

“What’s New with Wireless Charging?” Intel asked in July. Intel’s answer, “If you’ve been keeping up with trade shows and tech blogs, you might think that some new breakthrough in wireless energy transfer has taken place in the past year. It hasn’t.” Nikola Tesla worked on before the turn of the 20th century; his inductive charging techniques would see a renaissance some five decades after his death in 1943, said Intel. That has not stopped technologists, however, from asking what comes next. Today, said Intel, the idea and the technology is gaining momentum.

This week’s news headlines of Intel saying its charging bowl will be available by the end of this year will no doubt interest readers and will please those who saw the bowl earlier this year at the Consumer Electronics show, and kept sending e-mails to Intel asking when it will be ready. Earlier this year, it was clear that Intel was working on a day not too distant in the future when people in PC environments could enjoy docking and charging activities as a wire-free experience. Intel revealed at the Computex trade show in Taipei, via an Intel demonstration by Kirk Skaugen, Intel’s senior vice president and general manager of the PC Client Group, that the chipmaker was in fact working on wireless technologies to help deliver a new normal. Skaugen demonstrated how wireless technology could be integrated into a table that could simultaneously charge a laptop, phone, headset and tablet. In January, the company had really whetted appetites for changes in showing a wireless charging bowl at CES. The bowl looks like the standard bowl one might place on a table at home to hold keys, loose coins, or other items.

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