Tech news stories

Drug ‘reverses’ ageing in animal tests
26th March 2017 | bbc.com | Tech

A drug that can reverse aspects of ageing has been successfully trialled in animals, say scientists.

They have rejuvenated old mice to restore their stamina, coat of fur and even some organ function.

Purging the body of ‘retired’ cells could reverse ageing, study shows
26th March 2017 | theguardian.com | Humans, Tech

Purging retired cells from the body has been shown to undo the ravages of old age in a study that raises the prospect of new life-extending treatments .

When mice were treated with a substance designed to sweep away cells that have entered a dormant state due to DNA damage their fur regrew, kidney function improved and they were able to run twice as far as untreated elderly animals.

Old blood can be made young again and it might fight ageing
26th March 2017 | newscientist.com | Humans, Tech

A protein can boost blood stem cells, making them behave like those of younger people. Is it the key to harnessing young blood’s rejuvenating power?

Guyana tribe goes hi-tech to protect its land
26th March 2017 | bbc.com | Earth, Tech

Eleazer Mawasha speaks haltingly. English is not his first language, and Skype not his preferred method of communication.

An elder of Guyana’s Wai-Wai people, Mr Mawasha is more familiar with the sounds and rhythms of the rainforest with which its indigenous inhabitants have enjoyed a profound spiritual relationship for thousands of years.

A pharma company that spent $500,000 trying to keep pot illegal just got DEA approval for synthetic marijuana
26th March 2017 | washingtonpost.com | Humans, Tech

Insys Therapeutics, a pharmaceutical company that was one of the chief financial backers of the opposition to marijuana legalization in Arizona last year, received preliminary approval from the Drug Enforcement Administration this week for Syndros, a synthetic marijuana drug.

Researchers create self-sustaining bacteria-fueled power cell
25th March 2017 phys.org | Tech

Instead of oil, coal, or even solar energy, self-sustaining bacterial fuel cells may power the future.

Researchers at Binghamton University, State University of New York have developed the next step in microbial fuel cells (MFCs) with the first micro-scale self-sustaining cell, which generated power for 13 straight days through symbiotic interactions of two types of bacteria.

Solar-powered skin for prosthetic limbs
25th March 2017 | bbc.com | Tech

A synthetic skin for prosthetics limbs that can generate its own energy from solar power has been developed by engineers from Glasgow University.

Researchers had already created an ‘electronic skin’ for prosthetic hands made with new super-material graphene.

Your Skin Heals Itself. Soon, Robots’ Skin Will, Too
25th March 2017 futurism.com | Tech

Researchers in Hyderabad, India, have just discovered the extraordinary self-healing properties of graphene. They hope this revelation will lead to the development of flexible sensors that can heal themselves for use in artificial skin. This would allow robots to have self-healing skin, just like their human counterparts.

Towards a lip-reading computer
25th March 2017 | bbc.com | Tech

Scientists at Oxford say they’ve invented an artificial intelligence system that can lip-read better than humans.

The system, which has been trained on thousands of hours of BBC News programmes, has been developed in collaboration with Google’s DeepMind AI division.


Related: Real-Time Face Recognition Threatens to Turn Cops’ Body Cameras Into Surveillance Machines

Mona Lisa’s smile decoded: science says she’s happy
25th March 2017 phys.org | Tech

The subject of centuries of scrutiny and debate, Mona Lisa’s famous smile is routinely described as ambiguous. But is it really that hard to read? Apparently not.

In an unusual trial, close to 100 percent of people described her expression as unequivocally “happy”, researchers revealed on Friday.

Machine learning writes songs that elicits emotions from its listeners
25th March 2017 | sciencedaily.com | Tech

Music, more than any art, is a beautiful mix of science and emotion. It follows a set of patterns almost mathematically to extract feelings from its audience. Machines that make music focus on these patterns, but give little consideration to the emotional response of their audience. Scientists have developed a new machine-learning device that detects the emotional state of its listeners to produce new songs that elicit new feelings.


Related: Machine learning reveals lack of female screen time in top films

A Robot Lawyer Is Officially Assisting With Refugee Applications
25th March 2017 futurism.com | Tech

When Joshua Browder developed the chatbot for DoNotPay, the original idea was just to help people out with their traffic ticket woes. DoNotPay has since successfully overturned more than 200,000 disputable parking tickets in London, New York, and Seattle. It’s also given free legal aid to people who couldn’t afford lawyers for their emergency housing issues. The 20-year old Browder, a student at Stanford University, has now turned his robot lawyer to helping refugees seeking asylum.

Something on your mind? AI can read your thoughts and tell whether you are guilty of committing a crime
25th March 2017 | dailymail.co.uk | Tech

A superhuman skill once the preserve of comic book heroes could soon become a reality.

Scientists have used a combination of brain scanning and artificial intelligence to read the minds of ‘criminals’ to determine whether they are guilty of knowingly committing a crime.

New Tool to Stop ISIS From Trafficking Artifacts: A Liquid Tracking Device
25th March 2017 europe.newsweek.com | Ancient, Tech

A team of Syrian archaeologists in Turkey received a box in January that could have been meant for a detective agency: It contained small bottles, brushes, a sprayer and an ultraviolet light. Inside the bottles was a traceable liquid that the team hopes will deter looters from targeting Syrian artifacts, or help authorities track the artifacts if they disappear—cutting off a reported source of revenue for ISIS.

Buzzing the brain with electricity can boost working memory
23rd March 2017 | sciencedaily.com | Humans, Tech

Scientists have uncovered a method for improving short-term working memory, by stimulating the brain with electricity to synchronise brain waves.

Researchers at Imperial College London found that applying a low voltage current can bring different areas of the brain in sync with one another, enabling people to perform better on tasks involving working memory.

Whole-body vibration may be as effective as regular exercise
23rd March 2017 | sciencedaily.com | Humans, Tech

A less strenuous form of exercise known as whole-body vibration (WBV) can mimic the muscle and bone health benefits of regular exercise in mice, according to a new study. WBV consists of a person sitting, standing or lying on a machine with a vibrating platform. When the machine vibrates, it transmits energy to the body, and muscles contract and relax multiple times during each second.

Viruses created to selectively attack tumor cells
23rd March 2017 | sciencedaily.com | Tech

Scientists at the IDIBAPS Biomedical Research Institute and at the Institute for Research in Biomedicine (IRB Barcelona) lead a study in which they have designed a new strategy to get genetically modified viruses to selectively attack tumor cells without affecting healthy tissues.

News stories covering technology, and the latest inventions and medical advancements.