Friday, August 29, 2014

This is too good not to share.

This shows the scale of all objects in the Universe from the very smallest to the very largest, which is the Universe itself.

There is a scroll bar on the bottom of the screen.  Slide the dot left or right to zoom in or out.  It is also interesting to click on objects to get more information.

Friday, August 22, 2014

Fwd: Diabetes

'Researchers have developed a way to use a laser to measure people's blood sugar, and, with more work to shrink the laser system to a portable size, the technique could allow diabetics to check their condition without pricking themselves to draw blood. In a new article, the researchers describe how they measured blood sugar by directing their specialized laser at a person's palm.'

... We live in interesting times.


Sunday, August 10, 2014

Fwd: IBM brain-like processor

'This includes an ambitious project inside tech giant IBM, and today,
Big Blue released a research paper describing the latest fruits of
these labors. With this paper, published in the academic journal
Science, the company unveils what it calls TrueNorth, a custom-made
"brain-like" chip that builds on a simpler experimental system the
company released in 2011.

TrueNorth comes packed with 4,096 processor cores, and it mimics one
million human neurons and 256 million synapses, two of the fundamental
biological building blocks that make up the human brain. IBM calls
these "spiking neurons." What that means, essentially, is that the
chip can encode data as patterns of pulses, which is similar to one
of the many ways neuroscientists think the brain stores information.'

Thursday, August 7, 2014


Although respiratory support can ease problems with breathing and prolong survival, it does not affect the progression of ALS. Most people with ALS die from respiratory failure, usually within three to five years from the onset of symptoms. The median survival time from onset to death is around 39 months, and only 4% survive longer than 10 years. Physicist Stephen Hawking has lived with the disease for more than 50 years, though he is an unusual case.


Wednesday, August 6, 2014

Fwd: Aging

'There's a good reason people over 60 are not donor candidates for
bone marrow transplantation. The immune system ages and weakens with
time, making the elderly prone to life-threatening infection and other
maladies, and a UC San Francisco research team now has discovered a
reason why.

"We have found the cellular mechanism responsible for the inability of
blood-forming cells to maintain blood production over time in an old
organism, and have identified molecular defects that could be restored
for rejuvenation therapies," said Emmanuelle Passegué, PhD, a
professor of medicine and a member of the Eli and Edythe Broad Center
of Regeneration Medicine and Stem Cell Research at UCSF. Passegué, an
expert on the stem cells that give rise to the blood and immune
system, led a team that published the new findings online July 30,
2014 in the journal Nature.


'Researchers have discovered a new drug compound that reverses the brain deficits of Alzheimer's disease in an animal model. The compound, TC-2153, inhibits the negative effects of a protein called STtriatal-Enriched tyrosine Phosphatase (STEP), which is key to regulating learning and memory.'

Sunday, August 3, 2014

Fwd: Steam

'A new material structure developed at MIT generates steam by soaking up the sun. The structure -- a layer of graphite flakes and an underlying carbon foam -- is a porous, insulating material structure that floats on water. When sunlight hits the structure's surface, it creates a hotspot in the graphite, drawing water up through the material's pores, where it evaporates as steam.