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Biotech

+ - Italian lab modulates brain waves via cell phones

Submitted by
mnemotronic
mnemotronic writes "Hot on the heals of MIT's announcement of shutting down brain cells via light pulses (Slashdot thread), scientists at Italy's Universita Di Ferrara Neurolab (UNIFE), in concert with researchers in New Mexico have announced the ability to more directly control thought patterns using the LED lights built into cell phone keypads. Dr. Emilio Santiago, from UNIFE, and Lou F. Lirpa, a graduate student at the New Mexico State University neuroscience lab have developed light modulation patterns that induce certain types of thought. Using remote access capabilities built into most cell phones since 2004, they can (without the knowledge of the phone user) cause the keypad lights to flicker in a precise, controlled fashion. Given the right conditions, some of this light will filter throught the ear canal and land on the cochleal auditory nerves, which are sensitive excitation by yellowish/green light (about 550 nm, or 5500 Angstroms). This nerve bundle is a direct link to parts of the brain which are most susceptible to "suggestion induction", a term coined by Dr. Santiago. While the auditory nerves and related brain "hardware" have evolved the ability to filter out certain noises, they are more easily "fooled" by light.

So far, the only behaviors or thoughts the researchers have been able to impress on student volunteers are hunger, lust, and fatigue. But Dr. Avril Imbeseal, also of Neurolab, believes that with the right patterns, more complex thoughts may be impressed. "Just think of the possibilities for advertising" he said. And while noting the potential for military, national security, and government abuse, he was quick to provide reassurances that multi-variant thoughts, such as "I will vote for candidate X" are beyond the capabilities of their science.

Obviously, for the process to work, the cell phone keypad LEDs must be of the right color, or close, and the user must have the phone to their ear.

I think I'm going to stick with a Bluetooth headset for now...."
Windows

+ - DirectX 10.0 Redistributable for Windows 2000/XP/2

Submitted by
NGOHQ
NGOHQ writes "Microsoft DirectX is a group of technologies designed to make Windows-based computers an ideal platform for running and displaying applications rich in multimedia elements such as full-color graphics, video, 3D animation, and rich audio. DirectX 10.0 includes security and performance updates, along with many new features, which can be accessed by applications using the DirectX 10.0 APIs. Until now DirectX 10 has only been available for our Windows Vista operating system. After major out cries from the windows gaming community we have finally dedicated a team to convert this Vista only solution into a version that can be installed on Windows XP SP2 based machines. This update will only work on Windows Genuine Advantage certified copies of Windows XP."

Some people claim that the UNIX learning curve is steep, but at least you only have to climb it once.

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