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Submission + - Evolving Sun Cells

An anonymous reader writes: One day in the fall of 2011, Neil Sheeley, a solar scientist at the Naval Research Laboratory in Washington, D.C., did what he always does — look through the daily images of the sun from NASA's Solar Dynamics Observatory (SDO).

But on this day he saw something he'd never noticed before: a pattern of cells with bright centers and dark boundaries occurring in the sun's atmosphere, the corona.

Submission + - An American Search Alternative to Google (

TehBeer writes: "We're starting a Kickstarter to create an open source search engine not based on the Stanford Patented PageRank system licensed by Google that was originally derived from Baidu founder Robin Lee's Rankdex. It uses a FOSS Apache stack comprising of HBase, Hadoop, Whirr, and Data Nucleus and Spring Framework 3. The source code license costs $25 because we don't want to make it FOSS and mail people CDs and waste plastic to give the impression of value such as other Kickstarter open software projects have."

Submission + - Search for Sun's Sibling Could Find Life's Cousin (

astroengine writes: "The search for "Earth-like" worlds just became even more Earth-like. Researchers of the University of Turku, Finland, have begun the search for the Sun's siblings in the hope that they may play host to exoplanets. As these stars "grew up" in close proximity our Sun inside a stellar nursery some 4.5 billion years ago, they may have shared more than just star-building materials. Through the biology-spreading hypothesis "pansermia," they may have also shared the basic building blocks for life. Two sibling candidates have now been found and the researchers hope to survey the two stars — that contain similar metals and are of a similar age to our Sun — for bona fide Earth-like worlds. Could these worlds have life? If they do, extraterrestrial life may have more in common with us than we ever imagined."

Submission + - First use for Graphene? Flexible touchscreens. (

An anonymous reader writes: According to Rice University and Cambridge University, the first commercial use for graphene is likely to be in flexible touchscreens.

"âIt used to be that people wanted computers that were faster, but this has changed. Developments are looking at making computers that are more compatible with us.

“This means that we will be able to produce computers that can easily be folded up and tucked away. With many smartphones not having big enough screens, you could roll out a larger screen from something in your pocket.


Submission + - Galaxy Tab 10.1 vs. iPad 2 Smackdown (

DeviceGuru writes: DeviceGuru's 10-inch tablet smackdown pits Samsung’s Galaxy Tab 10.1 against Apple's iPad 2. At price parity the iPad 2 is probably a better bet for the average user since it's a more stable, near-perfect device with a rich assortment of apps for nearly every possible function you'd like to perform on a tablet, reasons the post. However, with the Samsung tablet's cost of goods rumored to be around $215 versus $260 for the iPad 2 for comparable models, Samsung could drop its 10-inch tablet's price to $425 and pose a serious challenge to Apple's device. But will they...?

Submission + - New Process Allows Fuel Cells to Run on Coal (

Zothecula writes: Lately we're hearing a lot about the green energy potential of fuel cells, particularly hydrogen fuel cells. Unfortunately, although various methods of hydrogen production are being developed, it still isn't as inexpensive or easily obtainable as fossil fuels such as coal. Scientists from the Georgia Institute of Technology, however, have recently taken a step towards combining the eco-friendliness of fuel cell technology with the practicality of fossil fuels — they've created a fuel cell that runs on coal gas.

Submission + - 'Light Switch' Flips Genes On and Off (

sciencehabit writes: Turning a gene on or off is usually a lot more difficult than just flipping a light switch. But a team of Swiss scientists has engineered cells that come pretty close: Only when they are bathed in blue light do the cells express a gene that has been inserted into them. The feat is the latest trick in a rapidly growing discipline known as optogenetics, where light is used to control activities within cells. In one example, the research team put the production of an anti-diabetes peptide in mice under the control of an optogenetic switch, allowing them to regulate glucose levels in the animals just by shining light on them.

Submission + - Fingertip mouse fits on a ring (

Eric Smalley writes: "The MicroPointing touchpad works by detecting the force your fingertip produces as it drags across the tiny device's three sensors, according to the company's patent application. The sensors are mounted on tiny posts spaced a few tenths of a millimeter apart--less than the size of a ridge on your fingertip."

The hardest part of climbing the ladder of success is getting through the crowd at the bottom.