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  1. Laika puppy cloned from ear meets ‘original mom’ in Russia 

    Lab-produced dogs cloned from bio material taken from the two best representatives of the Yakutian Laika species have arrived in Russia from South Korea for genetic research. One met its ‘original mother’.
    The scientists succeeded in cloning the Yakutian Laikas, a type of hunting dog from Northern Russia and Siberia, from a 12-year-old male and a 6-year-old female.

    via ScitechPress.org


  2. tumblr_or8s8bIgac1v53vrbo1_500.jpg

    tumblr_or8s8bIgac1v53vrbo2_500.jpg

    the-future-now:

    the-future-now:

    After 40 years, scientists may have solved the mystery of the “Wow!” space signal

    • In August of 1977, a group of astronomers examining radio transmissions in Ohio received a mysterious signal from an unknown source.
    • Shocked by its incredible length — 72 seconds — one scientist scribbled “Wow!” next to the recording, inadvertently giving the unusual communication a nickname that would last decades.
    • Now, after 40 years of grappling with possible explanations for the Wow! signal — which even include the possibility of aliens — scientists at the Center for Planetary Science have finally solved the puzzle.
    • A comet unknown to researchers in the 1970s likely caused the signal, and researchers were able to test that theory in a recent fly-by. Read more (6/8/17)

    follow @the-future-now

    Update: Turns out, that mysterious Wow! signal may still be a mystery

    • Not everyone is on board with the recent “Wow!” signal discovery.
    • Alan Fitzsimmons, a scientist at the United Kingdom’s Queens University Belfast, told Astronomy Now that it’s actually “rubbish.”
    • He claims that a 1420-MHZ signal from a comet has never been detected before, and that the 266/P Christensen would be too quiet, even at perihelion — the point that a comet is closest to the sun.
    • Meanwhile, comets are typically very active when at perihelion. Read more (6/12/17)

    via ScitechPress.org


  3. neurosciencestuff:

    Our nervous systems have left-right differences that are important for correct functioning. Handedness is probably the best-known asymmetry arising from the development of the nervous system. This is observed very early on: embryos of eight weeks already tend to move their right arms more often than their left arms. At this ‘age’ signals are not sent from the brain to the arms yet, but only from the spinal cord. A few weeks later, left-right differences also become visible in the shape and size of the premature brain.

    tumblr_inline_orrgrauDAG1r41umo_540.jpg

    A team of scientists from the Netherlands, the UK and China searched for genes that contribute to left-right differences in the nervous system, in the period between four and eight weeks after fertilisation. The genetic analysis showed that the left and right sides of the spinal cord develop at different paces.

    The left side of the spinal cord matures slightly faster than the right side. Sets of key genes that control growth and maturity were found to reach a more advanced profile of activity on the left side than the right. In the hindbrain, an area which is the predecessor for some adult parts of the brain, this was the other way around.

    “This seems logical, since many nerve fibers cross over from one side to the other at the boundary between the hindbrain and spinal cord,” says Carolien de Kovel, lead author of the study and researcher at the Max Plank Institute for Psycholinguistics (MPI). “How exactly this left-right genetic difference in the spinal cord leads to right-handedness is, however, not yet clear.”

    Clyde Francks, head of the MPI research group ‘Brain and behavioral asymmetries’ and Research Fellow at the Donders Institute at the Radboud University, explains, “We think that these very early left-right differences in the spinal cord may act to trigger some of the later asymmetries of the brain, such as the eventual dominance of the left hemisphere for language functions in most adults’.

    Asymmetry and schizophrenia
    “Around 85% of humans are right-handed; it seems the standard in human development,” De Kovel adds, “but genetic and environmental factors may provide alternative paths of development, such as left-handedness or two-handedness. Interestingly, disturbances in such asymmetries seem to be more common in people with psychiatric conditions such as schizophrenia.”

    Hence, De Kovel and her colleagues also compared the results of their study with genetic factors that influence the risk of schizophrenia. It was found that genes which exhibit the largest left-right differences in the embryos also tended to be involved in the risk of schizophrenia. “The findings do not prove directly that these genes cause schizophrenia by their actions in the spinal cord, because the same genes are also active in the grown-up brain. However this does provide us with clues on which we can base further research,” De Kovel explains.

    via ScitechPress.org


  4. tumblr_or08b7HJQr1r5yqglo1_500.jpg

    cellimagelibrary:

    Melanoma! Image of the Week - June 5, 2017

    CIL:38978 - http://www.cellimagelibrary.org/images/38978

    Description: Human melanoma cell undergoing cell division. The chromosomes (blue) have separated and the two daughter cells have almost split apart - only a small bridge of cytoplasm remains. The green staining labels the endoplasmic reticulum and the red labels the mitochondria. The image was produced on a confocal microscope; the ER and mitochondria are from a single optical section but the chromosomes are a 3D reconstruction from a series of sections.

    Authors :Paul J. Smith and Rachel Errington

    Licensing: Attribution-NonCommercial-NoDerivs 2.0 UK: England & Wales (CC BY-NC-ND 2.0 UK)

    via ScitechPress.org


  5. neurosciencestuff:

    How does heightened attention improve our mental capacity? This is the question tackled by new University of Bristol research published in the journal Cell Reports, which reveals a chemical signal released across the brain in response to attention demanding or arousing situations.

    image

    The new discoveries indicate how current drugs used in the treatment of Alzheimer’s, designed to boost this chemical signal, counter the symptoms of dementia. The results could also lead to new ways of enhancing cognitive function to counteract the effects of diseases such as Alzheimer’s and schizophrenia, as well as enhancing memory in healthy people.

    The team of medical researchers at the Universities of Bristol and Maynooth in collaboration with pharmaceutical company Eli Lilly & Company, studied how the release of the chemical ‘acetylcholine’ fluctuates during the day but found that the release is at its highest when the brain is engaged with more challenging mental tasks. The fluctuations are coordinated across the brain indicating a brain-wide signal to increase mental capacity with specific spikes in acetylcholine release occurring at particularly arousing times such as gaining reward.

    Professor Jack Mellor, lead researcher from Bristol’s Centre for Synaptic Plasticity, said: “These findings are about how brain state is regulated and updated on a rapid basis to optimise the encoding of memory and cognitive performance. Many current and future drug therapies for a wide range of brain disorders including Alzheimer’s and schizophrenia are designed to target chemical systems such as acetylcholine so understanding when they are active and therefore how they function will be crucial for their future development and clinical use.”

    Professor Lowry, who led the team at Maynooth University, added: “This work highlights the importance of cross-disciplinary basic research between universities and industry. Using real-time biosensor technology to improve our understanding of the role of important neurochemicals associated with memory is very exciting and timely, particularly given the increasing multifaceted societal burden caused by memory affecting neurological disorders such as dementia.”

    Primary author Dr Leonor Ruivo added: “This collaboration gave us access to a new generation of tools which, in combination with other powerful techniques, will allow researchers to build on our findings and provide a much more detailed map of the action of brain chemicals in health, disease and therapeutic intervention.”

    via ScitechPress.org


  6. Tea Consumption Leads to Epigenetic Changes in Women:

    currentsinbiology:

    Epigenetic changes are chemical modifications that turn our genes off or on. In a new study from Uppsala University, researchers show that tea consumption in women leads to epigenetic changes in genes that are known to interact with cancer and estrogen metabolism. The results are published in the journal Human Molecular Genetics.

    It is well known that our environment and lifestyle factors, such as food choices, smoking and exposure to chemicals, can lead to epigenetic changes. In the current study, researchers from Uppsala University in collaboration with research groups around Europe, investigated if coffee and tea consumption may lead to epigenetic changes. Previous studies have suggested that both coffee and tea play an important role in modulating disease-risk in humans by suppressing tumour progression, decreasing inflammation and influencing estrogen metabolism, mechanisms that may be mediated by epigenetic changes.

    The results show that there are epigenetic changes in women consuming tea, but not in men. Interestingly, many of these epigenetic changes were found in genes involved in cancer and estrogen metabolism. ”Previous studies have shown that tea consumption reduces estrogen levels which highlights a potential difference between the biological response to tea in men and women. Women also drink higher amounts of tea compared to men, which increases our power to find association in women”, says Weronica Ek, researcher at the Department of Immunology, Genetics and Pathology, who led the study. The study did not find any epigenetic changes in individuals drinking coffee.

    “Tea and coffee consumption in relation to DNA methylation in four European cohorts” by Weronica E. Ek, Elmar W. Tobi, Muhammad Ahsan, Erik Lampa, Erica Ponzi, Soterios A. Kyrtopoulos, Panagiotis Georgiadis, L.H Lumey, Bastiaan T. Heijmans, Maria Botsivali, Ingvar A. Bergdahl, Torgny Karlsson, Mathias Rask-Andersen, Domenico Palli, Erik Ingelsson, Åsa K. Hedman, Lena M. Nilsson, Paolo Vineis, Lars Lind, James M. Flanagan, Åsa Johansson on behalf of the Epigenome-Wide Association study Consortium in Human Molecular Genetics. Published online May 23 2017 doi:10.1093/hmg/ddx194

    via ScitechPress.org


  7. neurosciencestuff:

    A new research study contradicts the established view that so-called split-brain patients have a split consciousness. Instead, the researchers behind the study, led by UvA psychologist Yair Pinto, have found strong evidence showing that despite being characterised by little to no communication between the right and left brain hemispheres, split brain does not cause two independent conscious perceivers in one brain. Their results are published in the latest edition of the journal Brain

    tumblr_inline_oqu5rnL59t1r41umo_540.jpg

    Split brain is a lay term to describe the result of a corpus callosotomy, a surgical procedure first performed in the 1940s to alleviate severe epilepsy among patients. During this procedure, the corpus callosum, a bundle of neural fibres connecting the left and right cerebral hemispheres, is severed to prevent the spread of epileptic activity between the two brain halves. While mostly successful in relieving epilepsy, the procedure also virtually eliminates all communication between the cerebral hemispheres, thereby resulting in a ‘split brain’.

    This condition was made famous by the work of Nobel laureate Roger Sperry and Michael Gazzaniga. In their canonical work, Sperry and Gazzaniga discovered that split-brain patients can only respond to stimuli in the right visual field with their right hand and vice versa. This was taken as evidence that severing the corpus callosum causes each hemisphere to gain its own consciousness.

    Divided perception

    For their study, Pinto and his fellow researchers conducted a series of tests on two patients who had undergone a full callosotomy. In one of the tests, the patients were placed in front of a screen and shown various objects displayed in several locations. The patients were then asked to confirm whether an object appeared and to indicate its location. In another test, they had to correctly name the object they had seen, a notorious difficulty among spit-brain patients. ‘Our main aim was to determine whether the patients performed better when responding to the left visual field with their left hand instead of their right hand and vice versa’, says Pinto, assistant professor of Cognitive Psychology. ‘This question was based on the textbook notion of two independent conscious agents: one experiencing the left visual field and controlling the left hand, and one experiencing the right visual field and controlling the right hand.’

    To the researchers’ surprise, the patients were able to respond to stimuli throughout the entire visual field with all the response types: left hand, right hand and verbally. Pinto: ‘The patients could accurately indicate whether an object was present in the left visual field and pinpoint its location, even when they responded with the right hand or verbally. This despite the fact that their cerebral hemispheres can hardly communicate with each other and do so at perhaps 1 bit per second, which is less than a normal conversation. I was so surprised that I decide repeat the experiments several more times with all types of control.’

    tumblr_inline_oqu5szxYun1r41umo_540.png

    (Image caption: A depiction of the traditional view of the split brain syndrome (top) versus what the researchers actually found in two split-brain patients across a wide variety of tasks (bottom). Credit: Yair Pinto)

    Undivided consciousness

    According to Pinto, the results present clear evidence for unity of consciousness in split-brain patients. ‘The established view of split-brain patients implies that physical connections transmitting massive amounts of information are indispensable for unified consciousness, i.e. one conscious agent in one brain. Our findings, however, reveal that although the two hemispheres are completely insulated from each other, the brain as a whole is still able to produce only one conscious agent. This directly contradicts current orthodoxy and highlights the complexity of unified consciousness.’

    In the coming period, Pinto plans to conduct research on more split-brain patients to see whether his findings can be replicated. ‘These patients, who are rapidly decreasing in numbers, are our only way to find out what happens when large subsystems in the brain no longer communicate with each other. This phenomenon raises important questions that cannot be investigated in healthy adults because we have no technique to isolate large subsystems in healthy brains.’

    via ScitechPress.org


  8. Migratory birds bumped off schedule as climate change shifts spring:

    mindblowingscience:

    New research shows climate change is altering the delicate seasonal clock that North American migratory songbirds rely on to successfully mate and raise healthy offspring, setting in motion a domino effect that could threaten the survival of many familiar backyard bird species.

    A growing shift in the onset of spring has left nine of 48 species of songbirds studied unable to reach their northern breeding grounds at the calendar marks critical for producing the next generation of fledglings, according to a paper published today in Scientific Reports.

    That’s because in many regions, warming temperatures are triggering plants to begin their growth earlier or later than normal, skewing biological cycles that have long been in sync.

    The result, researchers say, could be a future much like the one Rachel Carson hinted at more than 50 years ago.

    “It’s like ‘Silent Spring,’ but with a more elusive culprit,” said Stephen Mayor, a postdoctoral researcher with the Florida Museum of Natural History at the University of Florida and first author of the study. “We’re seeing spring-like conditions well before birds arrive. The growing mismatch means fewer birds are likely to survive, reproduce and return the following year. These are birds people are used to seeing and hearing in their backyards. They’re part of the American landscape, part of our psyche. To imagine a future where they’re much less common would be a real loss.”

    Continue Reading.

    via ScitechPress.org


  9. Nano fiber feels forces and hears sounds made by cells:

    mindblowingscience:

    Engineers at the University of California San Diego have developed a miniature device that’s sensitive enough to feel the forces generated by swimming bacteria and hear the beating of heart muscle cells.

    The device is a nano-sized optical fiber that’s about 100 times thinner than a human hair. It can detect forces down to 160 femtonewtons—about ten trillion times smaller than a newton—when placed in a solution containing live Helicobacter pylori bacteria, which are swimming bacteria found in the gut. In cultures of beating heart muscle cells from mice, the nano fiber can detect sounds down to -30 decibels—a level that’s one thousand times below the limit of the human ear.

    “This work could open up new doors to track small interactions and changes that couldn’t be tracked before,” said nanoengineering professor Donald Sirbuly at the UC San Diego Jacobs School of Engineering, who led the study.

    Some applications, he envisions, include detecting the presence and activity of a single bacterium; monitoring bonds forming and breaking; sensing changes in a cell’s mechanical behavior that might signal it becoming cancerous or being attacked by a virus; or a mini stethoscope to monitor cellular acoustics in vivo.

    The work is published in Nature Photonics on May 15.

    Continue Reading.

    via ScitechPress.org




  10. currentsinbiology:

    Alberta museum unveils world’s best-preserved armoured dinosaur

    It has been compared to a dinosaur mummy, a lifelike sculpture and even a dragon from Game of Thrones.

    Now, 110 million years after it died, the 18ft-long nodosaur – hailed as the best-preserved armoured dinosaur in the world – has been unveiled at a Canadian museum.

    “Normally when we find dinosaur fossils we just have a skeleton, the bones. And we have to use our imaginations to reconstruct what they look like,” said Caleb Brown, a postdoctoral researcher at Alberta’s Royal Tyrrell Museum of Palaeontology.

    “In this case, we’re very lucky in that it’s not just the bones; we have all of the armour, the osteoderm is preserved, we also have all the skin preserved and it is in three dimensions.”

    via ScitechPress.org


  11. neurosciencestuff:

    Over millions of years retroviruses have been incorporated into our human DNA, where they today make up almost 10 per cent of the total genome. A research group at Lund University in Sweden has now discovered a mechanism through which these retroviruses may have an impact on gene expression. This means that they may have played a significant role in the development of the human brain as well as in various neurological diseases.            

    Retroviruses are a special group of viruses including some which are dangerous, such as HIV, while others are believed to be harmless. The viruses studied by Johan Jakobsson and his colleagues in Lund are called endogenous retroviruses (ERV) as they have existed in the human genome for millions of years. They can be found in a part of DNA that was previously considered unimportant, so called junk-DNA – a notion that researchers have now started to reconsider.

    “The genes that control the production of various proteins in the body represent a smaller proportion of our DNA than endogenous retroviruses. They account for approximately 2 per cent, while retroviruses account for 8–10 per cent of the total genome. If it turns out that they are able to influence the production of proteins, this will provide us with a huge new source of information about the human brain”, says Johan Jakobsson.

    And this is precisely what the researchers discovered. They have determined that several thousands of the retroviruses that have established themselves in our genome may serve as “docking platforms” for a protein called TRIM28. This protein has the ability to “switch off” not only viruses but also the standard genes adjacent to them in the DNA helix, allowing the presence of ERV to affect gene expression.

    This switching-off mechanism may behave differently in different people, since retroviruses are a type of genetic material that may end up in different places in the genome. This makes it a possible tool for evolution, and even a possible underlying cause of neurological diseases. In fact, there are studies that indicate a deviating regulation of ERV in several neurological diseases such as ALS, schizophrenia and bipolar disorder.

    Two years ago, Johan Jakobsson’s team showed that ERV had a regulatory role in neurons specifically. However, this study was conducted on mice, whereas the new study – published in the journal Cell Reports – was made using human cells.

    The differences between mice and humans are particularly important in this context. Many of the retroviruses that have been built into the human DNA do not exist in species other than humans and our closest relatives – gorillas and chimpanzees. They seem to have incorporated themselves into the genome some 35–45 million years ago, when the evolutionary lineage of primates was divided between the Old and New World.

    “Much of what we know about the overall development of the brain comes from the fruit fly, zebrafish and mouse. However, if endogenous retroviruses affect brain function, and we have our own set of these ERV, the mechanisms they affect may have contributed to the development of the human brain”, says Johan Jakobsson.

    via ScitechPress.org


  12. tumblr_opwzjfOM7W1rog5d1o1_500.png

    neurosciencestuff:

    (Image caption: We can examine every transistor in a classical microprocessor using the same techniques we use to understand the brain. For example, we can analyze the transistors based upon their activity during various games (left) or which transistors are necessary for a given game to function. Even with all the data and sophisticated analysis, our understanding of the inner-workings of the processor falls short of what we would hope. Credit: Eric Jonas, CC-BY)

    Classic Video Game System Used to Improve Understanding of the Brain

    The complexity of neural networks makes them difficult to analyze, but manmade computing systems should be simpler to understand. In a study published in PLOS Computational Biology, researchers applied widely used neuroscience approaches to analyze the classic games console Atari 2600 – which runs the videogame “Donkey Kong” – and found that such approaches do not meaningfully describe how the console’s microprocessor really works.

    The field of neuroscience is advancing rapidly. Scientists are able to record the simultaneous activity of more and more neurons in more and more organisms. However, testing the validity of data analysis algorithms is difficult since it is still unclear how even relatively simple neural systems like the brain of a fruit fly work.

    In the new paper, Eric Jonas of U.C. Berkeley and Konrad Kording of Northwestern University/ Rehabilitation Institute of Chicago describe their attempt to sidestep this issue by applying a large number of classical neuroscience analysis techniques to a computing system that they do understand: the 6502 microprocessor from the Atari 2600.

    “Since humans designed this processor from the transistor all the way up to the software, we know how it works at every level, and we have an intuition for what it means to ‘understand’ the system,” Jonas says. “Our goal was to highlight some of the deficiencies in ‘understanding’ that arise when applying contemporary analytic techniques to big-data datasets of computing systems.”

    The researchers used standard neuroscience techniques to analyze the Atari 2600’s microprocessor. They tested how well these techniques could illuminate known characteristics, such as the connections between different parts of the chip and the effects of destroying individual transistors. However, the techniques did not achieve the same level of understanding that a typical electrical engineering student would have.

    According to Jonas, the results suggest that, “without careful thought, current big-data approaches to neuroscience may not live up to their promise or succeed in advancing the field.” Adds Kording: “Progress requires better experiments, theories, and data analysis approaches.”

    Microprocessors and biological systems are different in many ways, which could limit the findings. Jonas and Kording also did not try all the existing neuroscience methods for probing the chip.

    Nonetheless, the study hints at potential problems with modern approaches to neuroscience and suggests new paths to explore in order to better understand the brain. “We could learn a lot about how to reverse-engineer biological systems by reverse-engineering synthetic systems,” Jonas says.

    via ScitechPress.org


  13. tumblr_opwr5pVCXN1qkvbwso1_r1_500.png

    Ouija Boards ‘work’ because of the ideomotor effect, where you sometimes move objects, or even yourself, without knowing it. Combined with a strong, subconscious need for an answer, it creates a situation where people can be spelling out words while moving the planchette and still believe 100% that they aren’t the ones doing it. Source

    Also, the reason you can get spooky results with Ouija Boards is because you’re unaware of everything you know. A 2012 study had people answer questions both verbally and with a Ouija Board. They were blindfolded and told they’d be using the board with another person, who removed their hands after beginning the experiment.

    tumblr_inline_opwrwzek0c1uy8wg3_540.jpg

    For the questions that people were unsure about, those who used a Ouija Board answered correctly 65% of the time, compared to 50% of the time when answering verbally. The researchers concluded that people have a ‘second intelligence’ buried in their subconscious that can only be accessed under certain conditions.

    tumblr_inline_opwrr3UqhR1uy8wg3_540.jpg

    ALSO… There’s a ghost behind you.  

     


  14. tumblr_opp996cMBe1v53vrbo1_500.jpg

    tumblr_opp996cMBe1v53vrbo2_500.jpg

    the-future-now:

    A new  discovery has changed scientists’ understanding of our early human relatives

    • In 2013, two recreational cavers accidentally stumbled upon pieces of human history while exploring the Rising Star cave system at the Cradle of Humankind World Heritage Site in South Africa.
    • Located 100 yards from the cave entrance is the Dinaledi chamber — a 30-foot long chamber somewhere between 2 million and 3 million years old — were more than 1,500 fossil fragments of 15 hominin skeletons were found buried in ancient clay.
    • After a month of excavation and two years of analysis by international experts, a verdict was made: The fossil remnants belonged to a previously unknown species related to humans, Homo naledi.
    • Now, the scientists behind the discovery have made another finding regarding the species’ timeline.
    • Due to the age and condition of the bones, traditional dating methods like radiocarbon technique or DNA extraction could not be used to date the fossils, the Washington Post reported. Instead, the scientists analyzed the Naledi teeth and radioactivity in the cave to date the fossils “back to between 236,000 and 335,000 years ago.”
    • The revelation suggests Homo naledi was alive at the same time as several species of ancient humans. Read more (5/9/17)

    follow @the-future-now

    via ScitechPress.org


  15. tumblr_opneq8h9uN1v53vrbo1_500.jpg

    tumblr_opneq8h9uN1v53vrbo2_500.jpg

    the-future-now:

    Scientists figured out how to convert polluted air into clean energy

    • In an era of growing concern for the environment, scientists in Belgium have come up with the groundwork for one possible solution: converting air pollution into power.
    • The device that can do it currently fits into the palm of a hand. It relies on solar power to convert polluted air compounds into stored hydrogen, a source of clean energy.
    • It has two chambers separated by a membrane; one chamber cleans the air and the other generates the hydrogen gas. Air with a higher concentration of pollutants ultimately creates stronger electrical currents.
    • This could be good news for cities such as Beijing, Delhi, India and Los Angeles, among many others. Read more (5/8/17)

    follow @the-future-now

    via ScitechPress.org


  16. Dutch open 'world's largest offshore' wind farm:

    mindblowingscience:

    Dutch officials on Monday opened what is being billed as one of the world’s largest offshore wind farms, with 150 turbines spinning in action far out in the North Sea.

    Over the next 15 years, the Gemini windpark, which lies some 85 kilometres (53 miles) off the northern coast of The Netherlands, will meet the energy needs of about 1.5 million people.

    At full winds the windpark has a generating capacity of some 600 megawatts, and will help supply some 785,000 Dutch households with renewable energy, the company said.

    “We are now officially in the operational stage,” the company’s managing director Matthias Haag told AFP, celebrating the completion of a project first conceived in 2010.

    Continue Reading.

    via ScitechPress.org


  17. NASA Wants Your Code! Boost Supercomputer Software Speed and Win $55,000:

    mindblowingscience:

    If you’re a computer programmer with some time on your hands, NASA needs you!

    The agency said it wants to streamline a piece of software used for aviation research and run on one of the world’s most powerful supercomputers. To do so, NASA has teamed up with HeroX and Topcoder to launch the High Performance Fast Computing Challenge (HPFCC), according to a statement.

    The challenge, should you choose to accept it entails getting NASA’s FUN3D design software to run faster — 10 to 10,000 times faster, in fact. [Images: NASA’s Vision of Future Air Travel]

    This may sound like a heady task, but NASA officials said the speed jump could be accomplished by identifying a coding bottleneck or simply by shaving milliseconds off of one of the software’s many subroutines by making it more efficient.

    “This is the ultimate ‘geek’ dream assignment,” said Doug Rohn, director of NASA’s Transformative Aeronautics Concepts Program (TACP), in the statement. “Helping NASA speed up its software to help advance our aviation research is a win-win for all.”

    Continue Reading.

    via ScitechPress.org


  18. 'Humanlike' ways of thinking evolved 1.8 million years ago, suggests new study:

    mindblowingscience:

    By using highly advanced brain imaging technology to observe modern humans crafting ancient tools, an Indiana University neuroarchaeologist has found evidence that human-like ways of thinking may have emerged as early as 1.8 million years ago.

    The results, reported May 8 in the journal Nature Human Behavior, place the appearance of human-like cognition at the emergence of Homo erectus, an early apelike species of human first found in Africa whose evolution predates Neanderthals by nearly 600,000 years.

    “This is a significant result because it’s commonly thought our most modern forms of cognition only appeared very recently in terms of human evolutionary history,” said Shelby S. Putt, a postdoctoral researcher with The Stone Age Institute at Indiana University, who is first author on the study. “But these results suggest the transition from apelike to humanlike ways of thinking and behaving arose surprisingly early.”

    Continue Reading.

    via ScitechPress.org


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