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Brain mechanism underlying the recognition of hand gestures develops even when blind

September 5, 2014 12:39 pm | by EurekAlert! | Comments

Does a distinctive mechanism work in the brain of congenitally blind individuals when understanding and learning others' gestures? Or does the same mechanism as with sighted individuals work? Japanese researchers figured out that activated brain regions of congenitally blind individuals ...

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Peptoid nanosheets at the oil-water interface

September 5, 2014 10:46 am | by EurekAlert! | Comments

From the people who brought us peptoid nanosheets that form at the interface between air and water, now come peptoid nanosheets that form at the interface between oil and water. Scientists at the U.S. Department of Energy (DOE)'s Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory (Berkeley Lab) have developed peptoid nanosheets - two-dimensional biomimetic materials with customizable properties....

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The future of ultrascale computing under study

September 5, 2014 10:37 am | by EurekAlert! | Comments

Ultrascale systems combine the advantages of distributed and parallel computing systems. The former is a type of computing in which many tasks are executed at the same time coordinately to solve one problem, based on the principle that a big problem can be divided into many smaller ones that are simultaneously solved....

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Harvard & Cornell researchers develop untethered, autonomous soft robot

September 5, 2014 10:33 am | by EurekAlert! | Comments

Imagine a non-rigid, shape-changing robot that walks on four "legs," can operate without the constraints of a tether, and can function in a snowstorm, move through puddles of water, and even withstand limited exposure to flames. Harvard advanced materials chemist George Whitesides, PhD and colleagues describe the mobile, autonomous robot they have created in Soft Robotics....

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Atomically thin material opens door for integrated nanophotonic circuits

September 5, 2014 10:29 am | by EurekAlert! | Comments

A new combination of materials can efficiently guide electricity and light along the same tiny wire, a finding that could be a step towards building computer chips capable of transporting digital information at the speed of light. Reporting today in The Optical Society's (OSA) high-impact journal Optica, optical and material scientists at the University of Rochester and Swiss Federal Institute of Technology in Zurich....

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A metallic alloy that is tough and ductile at cryogenic temperatures

September 5, 2014 9:26 am | by EurekAlert! | Comments

A new concept in metallic alloy design – called "high-entropy alloys" - has yielded a multiple-element material that not only tests out as one of the toughest on record, but, unlike most materials, the toughness as well as the strength and ductility of this alloy actually improves at cryogenic temperatures....

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UCSB researchers develop ultra sensitive biosensor from molybdenite semiconductor

September 5, 2014 9:10 am | by EurekAlert! | Comments

Move over, graphene. An atomically thin, two-dimensional, ultrasensitive semiconductor material for biosensing developed by researchers at UC Santa Barbara promises to push the boundaries of biosensing technology in many fields, from health care to environmental protection to forensic industries....

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2-D or 3-D? That is the question

September 5, 2014 9:06 am | by EurekAlert! | Comments

The increased visual realism of 3-D films is believed to offer viewers a more vivid and lifelike experience—more thrilling and intense than 2-D because it more closely approximates real life. However, psychology researchers at the University of Utah, among those who use film clips routinely in the lab to study patients' emotional conditions, have found that there is no significant difference between the two formats....

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Rosetta-Alice spectrograph obtains first far ultraviolet spectra of a cometary surface

September 5, 2014 8:56 am | by EurekAlert! | Comments

NASA's Alice ultraviolet (UV) spectrograph aboard the European Space Agency's Rosetta comet orbiter has delivered its first scientific discoveries. Rosetta, in orbit around comet 67P/Churyumov-Gerasimenko, is the first spacecraft to study a comet up close....

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Hurricane Norbert pinwheels in NASA satellite imagery

September 5, 2014 8:53 am | by EurekAlert! | Comments

The Eastern Pacific's Hurricane Norbert resembled a pinwheel in an image from NASA's Terra satellite as bands of thunderstorms spiraled into the center. NASA's Global Precipitation Measurement or GPM mission has helped forecasters see that Norbert has lost some of its organization early on September 4....

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Climate-smart agriculture requires three-pronged global research agenda

September 5, 2014 8:48 am | by EurekAlert! | Comments

Faced with climate change and diminishing opportunities to expand productive agricultural acreage, the world needs to invest in a global research agenda addressing farm and food systems, landscape and regional issues and institutional and policy matters if it is to meet the growing worldwide demand for food, fiber and fuel, suggests an international team of researchers....

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News media losing role as gatekeepers to new 'social mediators' on Twitter, study finds

September 5, 2014 8:45 am | by EurekAlert! | Comments

The U.S. government is doing a better job of communicating on Twitter with people in sensitive areas like the Middle East and North Africa without the participation of media organizations, according to a study co-authored by a University of Georgia researcher....

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Magnetic nanocubes self-assemble into helical superstructures

September 5, 2014 8:41 am | by EurekAlert! | Comments

Materials made from nanoparticles hold promise for myriad applications, from improved solar energy production to perfect touch screens. The challenge in creating these wonder-materials is organizing the nanoparticles into orderly arrangements....

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Motorola emphasizes design in circular smartwatch

September 5, 2014 2:17 am | by Anick Jesdanun - AP Technology Writer - Associated Press | Comments

Motorola rolled out a circular smartwatch Friday, counting on a more traditional design to win over consumers who have so far shunned other computerized wrist devices. Smartwatches so far have had rectangular faces, a shape that has turned off many consumers, said Steve Sinclair, Motorola's vice...

GaN Systems signs exclusive worldwide deal with Mouser Electronics

September 4, 2014 4:17 pm | Comments

GaN Systems Inc. announced it is has signed an exclusive worldwide distribution agreement with Mouser Electronics. GaN Systems’ gallium nitride power transistors are based on its proprietary Island Technology and offer significant advantages over traditional silicon MOSFETs and IGBTs....

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