Medication via remote-control instead of a shot? Scientists implanted a microchip in seven women that did just that, oozing out the right dose of a bone-strengthening drug once a day without them even noticing. Implanted medicine is a hot field, aiming to help patients better stick to their meds and to deliver those drugs straight to the body part that needs them.
“You could literally have a pharmacy on a chip,” says Langer, the David H. Koch Institute Professor at MIT. “You can do remote control delivery, you can do pulsatile drug delivery, and you can deliver multiple drugs.”
A small company called ChamTech Operations based in Utah has developed a nanoparticle mix that can be sprayed on any vertical object—like a tree—and make that object act as a high-powered antenna.
Not only can the sprayed-on nanoparticles make trees into antennas, but it can also extend the range of an existing antenna by a factor of 100, according to one of the principals of the company, Anthony Sutera. For instance, in RFID tags the nanoparticle spray extended the readable range of the tag from a mere five feet (1.5 meters) to 700 feet (200 m).
The material that Chamtech came up with contains nanoparticles that when sprayed on a surface act as nanocapacitors. The nanocapacitors charge and discharge very quickly and don’t create any heat that can reduce the efficiency of your typical copper antenna. The trick was to get the nanocapacitors to spread out in just the right pattern.
Another intriguing application, Sutera suggests in the video, is using the spray-on material in the white lines of the highway. This could make it possible to have high bandwidth connectivity in your car.
A couple of years ago, on a slow day at the office, I decided to experiment with editing one particularly misleading assertion chiseled into the Wikipedia article. The description of the trial stated, “The prosecution, led by Julius Grinnell, did not offer evidence connecting any of the defendants with the bombing. … “
Coincidentally, that is the claim that initially hooked me on the topic. In 2001 I was teaching a labor-history course, and our textbook contained nearly the same wording that appeared on Wikipedia. One of my students raised her hand: “If the trial went on for six weeks and no evidence was presented, what did they talk about all those days?” I’ve been working to answer her question ever since.
I have not resolved all the mysteries that surround the bombing, but I have dug deeply enough to be sure that the claim that the trial was bereft of evidence is flatly wrong.
So I removed the line about there being “no evidence” and provided a full explanation in Wikipedia’s behind-the-scenes editing log. Within minutes my changes were reversed. The explanation: “You must provide reliable sources for your assertions to make changes along these lines to the article.”
That was curious, as I had cited the documents that proved my point, including verbatim testimony from the trial published online by the Library of Congress. I also noted one of my own peer-reviewed articles. One of the people who had assumed the role of keeper of this bit of history for Wikipedia quoted the Web site’s “undue weight” policy, which states that “articles should not give minority views as much or as detailed a description as more popular views.” He then scolded me. “You should not delete information supported by the majority of sources to replace it with a minority view.”
The “undue weight” policy posed a problem. Scholars have been publishing the same ideas about the Haymarket case for more than a century. The last published bibliography of titles on the subject has 1,530 entries.
“Explain to me, then, how a ‘minority’ source with facts on its side would ever appear against a wrong ‘majority’ one?” I asked the Wiki-gatekeeper. He responded, “You’re more than welcome to discuss reliable sources here, that’s what the talk page is for. However, you might want to have a quick look at Wikipedia’s civility policy.”
Another editor cheerfully tutored me in what this means: “Wikipedia is not ‘truth,’ Wikipedia is ‘verifiability’ of reliable sources. Hence, if most secondary sources which are taken as reliable happen to repeat a flawed account or description of something, Wikipedia will echo that.”
Bzzt, bzzt. You check the supposed vibration in your pocket, yet no one has called or sent you an SMS.
Known commonly as a phantom vibration, this sensation has been felt by many and left them baffled.
But according to scientists, mobile users aren’t necessarily imagining things and the vibrations may not be “phantom” after all.
Some people believe there is a compulsive element to feeling the sensation, or believe that it occurs simply when there is friction in their pockets or they bump or brush up against something.
Others, such as psychologist and chairman of the School of Psychology at the University of Sydney, Alex Blaszczynski, believe it’s a sensation triggered by electrical signals.
“I expect it’s related to some of the electrical signals coming through in a transmission, touching on the surrounding nerves, giving a feeling of a vibration, ” Professor Blaszczynski said.
“I expect what’s happening is that it is causing some physiological effect.”
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