Want to read Slashdot from your mobile device? Point it at m.slashdot.org and keep reading!


Forgot your password?
Take advantage of Black Friday with 15% off sitewide with coupon code "BLACKFRIDAY" on Slashdot Deals (some exclusions apply)". ×

Submission + - LEDs technology set to get cheaper, efficient (techienews.co.uk)

hypnosec writes: One of the biggest hurdles in adoption of LED lighting is the cost involved and the inability of energy savings to offset these high costs. This is about to change as a new research has shown promise of a efficient yet cheaper LED technology. The new LED technology, which is said to have the potential of revolutionising lighting technology, has been developed by Zhibin Yu, Assistant Professor of Industrial and Manufacturing Engineering at Florida State University. The new technology involves a combination of organic and inorganic materials. The newly developed material, which dissolve easily and can be applied like paint to light bulbs, shines a blue, green or red light. This is not its selling point though as what makes this technology special is the fact that it only requires one laying unlike traditional LED lights which require four or five layers of material on top of each other to create a product with desired effects.

Submission + - PLANTOID: Project aiming to build machines that have roots (paritynews.com)

hypnosec writes: Inspired from the way plants maintain themselves, the PLANTOID project seeks to build machines that grows ‘roots’ and using these ‘roots’ the machines will be able to pull energy from the soil, like plants, without having to rely on conventional energy sources such as batteries. “PLANTOID take inspiration from, and aim at imitating, the amazing penetration, exploration, and adaptation capabilities of plant roots”, reads the project page.

The project was unveiled by Barbara Mazzolai of the Italian Institute of Technology at the Living Machines Conference in London. Mazzolai and team behind the project will be developing sensors into the system using which will detect moisture, chemicals, temperature among other things – just like plant roots. Further, the team will also be looking to establish communication networks between the ‘roots’ of the machine.

Submission + - Physicists succeed in freezing motion of light for about a minute (paritynews.com)

hypnosec writes: Team of physicists over at Darmstadt headed by Thomas Halfmann have succeeded in freezing motion of light for about a minute and also managed to save the images being transferred by the light in the crystal. Stopping light while in motion is nothing new as about a decade ago researchers were able to stop the motion for short moments following which researchers extended the times to a few seconds using extreme cold gases as well as special crystals. To achieve the stoppage, Halfmann and his team used a glass-like crystal having low concentration of praseodymium ions, two laser beams – one beam that has to be stopped and the other being part of the deceleration unit also known as the control beam. In the setup, the control beam would change the optical properties of the crystal such that the ions would change the speed of light to a great degree. decelerated beam comes to a stop when the control beam is switched off.

Submission + - Researchers Build Fibre Cables Capable of Near Light Speed Communication (paritynews.com)

hypnosec writes: Researchers have managed to build a fibre optic cable that is capable of transferring data between end points at near light speed. The team of researchers over at the University of Southampton in England have constructed a fibre that is hollow with special inner walls that will prevent light from refracting. Fibre optic cables transfer data using light beams and even though theoretically the cables can carry data at near light speed, the actual data throughput is reduced by 31 per cent — thanks to the refraction of light as it passes through silica glass. Refraction of light is less in air as compared to glass and to get around the above problem, researchers have been looking at options through which the core of the fiber can be replaced by air. Another hurdle was the question of how to get light beams to move through cables that bend and around curvatures. This is where the ingenuity of the research comes into play. The researchers have built fibre cables with a hollow core that allows for movement of light across bends while minimizing loss of light due to refraction. The researchers credit this achievement to what they have dubbed "ultra-thin photonic-bandgap rim" that not only minimizes data loss but also reduces latency while providing for wider bandwidth.

Submission + - Engineers build Self-healing Chips Capable of Repairing Themselves (paritynews.com)

hypnosec writes: Team of researchers and engineers at California Institute of Technology (Caltech) has developed ‘self-healing’ chips that would heal themselves within a few microseconds and recover from faults that may range from less battery power to complete transistor failure. The engineers demonstrated the self-healing capabilities through tiny amplifiers; a total of 76 of them alongside everything else that is needed to carry out self-healing – all of it able to fit on a penny. The team went to the extremes in testing their work by damaging the amplifiers at several places using high-power lasers. In less than a second the chips were able to develop work-around thereby healing themselves.

Submission + - CERN's LHC Shut for 2 years (paritynews.com)

hypnosec writes: CERN has announced that the Large Hadron Collider (LHC) has been shut down as planned and will remain turned off till 2015 so that it can go through repairs and vital maintenance can be performed. The LHC has been operational for three years in a row and has generated huge amounts of research data and has led to ground-breaking discoveries like the Higgs Boson. The planned maintenance will foresee repairs following which the collider will be capable of operating at higher speeds.

Submission + - Ozone on the Path to Recovery over Antarctica? (paritynews.com)

hypnosec writes: Ozone layer seems to be on a road to recovery over Antarctica as Satellite images indicate that the hole in the protective layer is the smallest as compared to its size in the past decade. According to Europe’s MetOp weather satellite, which is monitoring the atmospheric ozone, the hole over the South Pole in 2012 was the smallest in the last 10 years. The decrease in size of the hole is probably the result of reduction in the concentration of CFCs, especially since the mid-1990s, because of international agreements like the Montreal Protocol.

Submission + - Researchers Mine Old News, Web to Predict Future Events (paritynews.com)

hypnosec writes: Microsoft Research has teamed up with the Technion-Israel Institute of Technology to develop software that can predict events like outbreaks of disease or violence by mining data from old news and the web. The project, if successful, will result into a tool that would provide information that is more than just educated guesses or intuition. To ensure that the software’s output is according to expectation, the team consisting of Eric Horvitz from Microsoft Research and Kira Radinsky from Technion-Israel Institute tested it with articles from New York Times spanning over 20 years from archives between 1986 and 2007. The test data also included data from other sources such as the web enabling the software to see more things.

Submission + - Intel to Help Stephen Hawking Communicate Faster (paritynews.com)

hypnosec writes: Stephen Hawking’s ability to communicate has been deteriorating over the years and as it stands, the physicist is able to only communicate at the rate of 1 word per minute currently which is about to change as Intel is working on an interface that will boost the scientist’s speech to up to 10 words per minute. Intel CTO Justin Rattner has revealed that they are working towards improving the speed at which Hawking communicates and beyond the twitch in the cheek, Hawking is also capable of other voluntary facial expressions which can be tapped to achieve faster communications for which they are developing a better character interface with a better word predictor.

Submission + - Researchers create 'fluid-like' Polymer Electrolyte for Flexible Batteries (paritynews.com)

hypnosec writes: Korean scientists have developed a ‘fluid-like’ polymer electrolyte used in lithium-ion batteries that would pave way for flexible batteries and flexible smartphones. The discovery was made by a joint team of researchers that was led by Professor Lee Sang-young of Ulsan National Institute of Science and Technology. The new electrolyte though flexible is made of solid materials hence making the batteries more stable than the lithium-ion batteries used today unlike its liquified counterparts.

Submission + - Researchers Create Ultrastretchable Wires Using Liquid Metal (paritynews.com)

hypnosec writes: Researchers, by using liquid metal, have created wires that can stretch up to eight times their original length while retaining its conduction properties. Boffins over at North Carolina State University made the stretchable wires by filling in a tube made out of extremely elastic polymer with gallium and indium liquid metal alloy.

Submission + - Pee-Powered Generator Unveiled at Maker Faire Africa (paritynews.com) 1

hypnosec writes: Four Nigerian girls aged between 14 and 15 have unveiled their creation – a urine-powered generator that is capable of generating six hours of electricity using a liter of pee. Showcased at the fourth annual Maker Faire Africa in Lagos, Nigeria, the generator is an eco-friendly power source that generates electricity by separating hydrogen present in the excreted bodily fluids with an electrolytic cell. The design is more or less crude as of now and if enough attention and funding are made available, chances are that this pee-powered generator may very well be available at your local hardware store.

Submission + - IBM Watson to Help Real Patients Soon (paritynews.com)

hypnosec writes: IBM’s Watson is going to help real patients at New York's Memorial Sloan-Kettering Cancer Center soon it has been revealed. Watson has been busy working as a virtual resident over the last six months practicing medicine through simulations carried out using an app that was developed by IBM. But, soon enough the supercomputer will be seeing actual patients. The supercomputer will be looking at a person’s chart, analyzing the data to come up with two action plans. Watson might suggest two courses of chemotherapy with confidence levels attached to each. For one therapy Watson may have 90 per cent confidence while for the other one it may have 75 per cent confidence. This is where an actual doctor would come in, analyze the output from Watson and take the final decision. Previous questions of whether or not Watson will kill you cancer may very well be answered to some extent with this latest development.

Submission + - Researchers Create Home-based Self-Assessment Tool for Dementia Screening (paritynews.com)

hypnosec writes: Researchers over Georgia Institute of Technology have created a tool using which adults can screen themselves for early signs of dementia. The tool is based on paper and pencil clock drawing tests which is one of the most commonly used screening tests for cognitive impairment. Dubbed ClockMe, the tool helps adults identify early signs of impairment using two main components – ClockReader Application and ClockAnalyzer Application. Using ClockReader participants draw a clock with number and correct minute and hour hands while the ClockAnalyzer Application that checks for 13 traits to identify signs of cognitive impairment.

Submission + - Hydrogen Fuel Cells for Smartphone Charging Coming in 2013 (paritynews.com)

hypnosec writes: The search for a hydrogen based cell phone charger is over as ROHM, Aquafairy and Kyoto University have developed a hydrogen based fuel cell that is capable of charging a phone in about 2 hours. Electricity in the compact and portable fuel cell is generated by producing hydrogen through a chemical reaction that involves calcium hydride sheets and water. The fuel cell generates approximately 4.5 liters of hydrogen from the calcium hydride sheet that is less than 3cc in volume thus providing 5Whr of electricity. ROHM said that the new fuel cell operate in ambient temperatures making it suitable for day to day use with smartphones, tablets, other portable devices.

"Spock, did you see the looks on their faces?" "Yes, Captain, a sort of vacant contentment."