Geoengineering

Geoengineering involves changing our environment to suit human needs better. This article looks at ways geoengineers have thought about reducing global warming by not reducing greenhouse gasses, but by proactively doing something about it. Some pretty far out ideas, such as floating white plastic islands in oceans, space mirrors and lacing the atmosphere with sulphur Read more about Geoengineering[…]

Computers reading emotions

Our faces express our emotions – apparently there are around 20 key facial movements expressed around 24 facial feature points, which betray our emotions. By scanning these points intelligently, and detecting things such as facial form, computers can read the emotions of those using them. Ideas posited in the article: websites advertising products directed at Read more about Computers reading emotions[…]

SSTAR – small, sealed, transportable, autonomous reactor

http://www.newscientist.com/article.ns?id=dn6344 The aim is to create a sealed reactor that can be delivered to a site, left to generate power for up to 30 years, and retrieved when its fuel is spent. The developers claim that no one would be able to remove the fissile material from the reactor because its core would be inside Read more about SSTAR – small, sealed, transportable, autonomous reactor[…]

Smokers are cheaper for society

The Erasmus University has studied the costs of leading an unhealthy life, and discovered (duh) that allthough smokers cost more to care for, they lead lives which are on average 10 years shorter than non-smokers, so they cost society less.

New drug wakens vegetative patients

Only for a few minutes, but they can talk and move about a bit. No telling what the long term effects are, but they have to be better than staying asleep hooked to life support. The drug activates dormant parts of the brain around the damaged tissue, causing a sleepy waking period.

Coal based jet fuel

The USAF is playing around with alternative fuels to fly their planes with, as the amount they use anually accounts for half of the total US governmental useage of fuel. By mixing coal with normal fuel they have something that will decrease their reliance on normal petrol.

The end of banana’s?

This New Scientist report is very sad if it’s true – apparently the banana’s we eat can’t reproduce themselves, and the trees that make them are being attacked by a lethal funghus. So pretty soon, no more banana’s from India!

FLIP capsising ship

Direct from The Life Aquatic, two of our heroes have gone and built this ship, which capsises in order to be stable in the water to do research where stability is needed. They actually put serious money in this!