Παρασκευή, 13 Ιουνίου 2014

ScienceDaily: Top Technology News

ScienceDaily: Top Technology News

Buy lunch, pay with your hand: Vein scanning technique

Posted: 12 Jun 2014 09:04 AM PDT

Paying for a coffee or lunch by simply scanning your palm still sounds like science fiction to most of us. However, an engineering student in Sweden has made it happen -- making his the first known company in the world to install the vein scanning technique in stores and coffee shops.

Content kingmaker: quality or webpage position?

Posted: 12 Jun 2014 05:59 AM PDT

Don't waste your time reading that highly recommended article ranked at the top of the webpage. A recent study finds that a more interesting one may be lurking at the bottom. The culprit -- position bias -- accounts for readers spending five times more attention on content at the top of a webpage and leads to a 'winner-take-all' effect. How can content providers combat these effects?

Circuits capable of functioning at temperatures greater than 350 degrees Celsius

Posted: 12 Jun 2014 05:50 AM PDT

Engineering researchers have designed integrated circuits that can survive at temperatures greater than 350 degrees Celsius – or roughly 660 degrees Fahrenheit. Their work will improve the functioning of processors, drivers, controllers and other analog and digital circuits used in power electronics, automobiles and aerospace equipment -- all of which must perform at high and often extreme temperatures.

Manipulating and detecting ultrahigh frequency sound waves: 1,000 times higher resolution ultrasound images possible

Posted: 11 Jun 2014 02:10 PM PDT

Researchers have demonstrated a technique for detecting and controlling ultrahigh frequency sound waves at the nanometer scale. This represents an advance towards next generation ultrasonic imaging with potentially 1,000 times higher resolution than today's medical ultrasounds.

MRI brain scans detect people with early Parkinson's

Posted: 11 Jun 2014 02:09 PM PDT

A simple and quick MRI technique that offers promise for early diagnosis of Parkinson's disease has been developed by researchers. The team demonstrated that their new MRI approach can detect people who have early-stage Parkinson's disease with 85 percent accuracy. Parkinson's disease is characterized by tremor, slow movement, and stiff and inflexible muscles. It's thought to affect around 1 in 500 people.

Stock prognosticators: Finance message board users may be able to predict stock price movements

Posted: 11 Jun 2014 02:07 PM PDT

A new study suggests Yahoo's finance message boards can predict stock price movements. It also found more than two-thirds of the comments had nothing to do with finance. The researchers analyzed 70,000 posts by more than 7,000 commenters on Yahoo's finance message boards from April to June 2011. They determined what sentiment, if any, they expressed about 11 Fortune 500 stocks, either bullish, bearish, or neutral.

Mining data archives yields haul of 'red nuggets' galaxies

Posted: 11 Jun 2014 12:11 PM PDT

The world of astronomy has changed. An astronomer used to have to travel to a remote location and endure long, cold nights, patiently guiding a telescope to collect precious photons of light. Now, a proliferation of online archives allows astronomers to make discoveries from the comfort of their own offices. By mining such archives, a team of astronomers has found a treasure trove of 'red nugget' galaxies.

Why aren't product designers considering activity trackers for older adults?

Posted: 11 Jun 2014 11:37 AM PDT

Commercially available activity-monitoring apps, Web sites, and wearable devices allow for easy self-management of health and wellness. This technology may be particularly helpful for older adults, who can improve their cognitive function through proper diet and exercise. Despite tracking monitors' growing popularity and potential benefits, product designers rarely consider those over 65 to be a viable user group, and new human factors/ergonomics research indicates that the technology presents several usability challenges for this population.

More than just food for koalas: Scientists sequence genome of eucalyptus -- a global tree for fuel and fiber

Posted: 11 Jun 2014 10:19 AM PDT

Researchers seek to harness and improve upon Eucalyptus' potential for enhancing sustainable biofuels and biomaterials production. It can be harvested from tropical and temperate zones and has over 700 species that are rich in genetic variation. The international effort to sequence and analyze the genome of Eucalyptus grandis engaged more than 80 researchers from 30 institutions, representing 18 countries.

Weird 'magic' ingredient for quantum computing: Contextuality

Posted: 11 Jun 2014 10:18 AM PDT

A form of quantum weirdness is a key ingredient for building quantum computers according to new research. Researchers have shown that a weird aspect of quantum theory called contextuality is a necessary resource to achieve the so-called magic required for universal quantum computation.

Viewing deeper into the quantum world

Posted: 11 Jun 2014 08:28 AM PDT

Researchers have experimentally demonstrated that interferometers, the most sensitive measuring instruments yet invented, can be improved using nonlinear physics. The result answers a fundamental question in quantum mechanics and could open the way to more sensitive detection of magnetic fields in delicate systems such as the human heart.

The inflatable concrete dome: Better construction method

Posted: 11 Jun 2014 06:34 AM PDT

Large shell structures made of concrete or stone are hardly ever built any more. The reason is that their construction requires large, expensive supporting structures. A completely new construction method has been developed, which does not require any timber structures at all: a flat concrete slab hardens on the ground, and then an air cushion below the plate is inflated, bending the concrete and quickly forming a sustainable shell. Even large event halls could be built this way.

Lighter cars with new robotic welding method

Posted: 11 Jun 2014 06:34 AM PDT

A vehicle typically consists of several thousands of spot joints such as rivets, clinch joints or spot welds. They are used to bond together different parts of the vehicle. But the rivets are costly and do not have great strength. Moreover, spot joints require a certain sheet thickness to provide sufficient strength. Researchers in Sweden have now invented a welding tool that also functions as a temperature sensor.

Home, office ventilation should be key issue during construction planning

Posted: 11 Jun 2014 06:33 AM PDT

The inhabitants of Central Europe spend about 80 percent of their lifetime in buildings. With elaborate ventilation systems, researchers have provided a pleasant climate in homes and offices, and which ventilation should be used in which building is one of the key issues during the planning phase of a new building.

New sensor to detect harmful bacteria on food industry surfaces

Posted: 11 Jun 2014 06:33 AM PDT

A new device designed to sample and detect foodborne bacteria is being trialled by scientists. The team is developing a sensor capable of collecting and detecting Listeria monocytogenes on food industry surfaces, thereby preventing contaminated products from entering the market. Listeria monocytogenes is a pathogen that causes listeriosis, an infection with symptoms of fever, vomiting and diarrhea, that can spread to other parts of the body and lead to more serious complications, like meningitis.

Novel process allows production of the entire circuitry on touchscreens in one step

Posted: 11 Jun 2014 06:32 AM PDT

When users operate their smartphones, tablets and so on, they do not give a second thought to the complicated electronics that make them work. All that concerns them is that they can happily swipe and tap away. To make the touchscreens work, they are provided on their surface with microscopically small electrical conductor tracks, which open and close circuits when touched with a finger. At the peripheries of the devices, these microscopic tracks merge into larger conductor tracks. Until now, several production stages have been needed to create them. Researchers are now presenting a novel process that allows microscopic and macroscopic conductor tracks to be produced in one step.

Serious challenges to 'new urbanist' communities found

Posted: 10 Jun 2014 09:20 AM PDT

As New Urbanist communities expand nationwide, a study shows the increasing challenges of balancing complex traffic engineering systems with the ideals of walkable, sustainable neighborhoods. One neighborhood, the focus of this study, began with a set of guiding principles, like similar developments, but made compromises due to competing conventional traffic engineering standards.

Khaya senegelansis: Natural oil absorbent for produced water treatment

Posted: 10 Jun 2014 09:18 AM PDT

Instead of being just landscaping waste, the dried leaves of Khaya Senegelansis can help environmental agencies and oil and gas companies treat waste water from petroleum extraction absorbent, researchers have demonstrated.

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