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Cornell

— Health and Wellbeing

Researchers restore vision to mice by unlocking retina’s neural code

By - August 20, 2012 1 Picture
Retinal prostheses such as the Argus II, Bio-Retina and the Retina Implant AG microchip all work – more or less – by stimulating the retina’s ganglion cells with light-induced electrical signals. The images produced in the patient’s visual cortex tend to be quite rudimentary, however. This is partially because the rate at which the signals are sent isn’t the same as the rate of neural impulses normally produced by a retina. Now, researchers have deciphered the neural code used by mouse ganglion cells, and used it to create a prosthesis that reportedly restores normal vision to blind mice. They have additionally deciphered the neural code of monkeys, which is close to that used by humans, so a device for use by blind people could also be on the way. Read More
— Robotics

Robotic gripper picks up objects using coffee grounds and a balloon (UPDATED: new video)

By - October 25, 2010 7 Pictures
While creating robotic grippers to pick up objects that are all the same shape and consistency is relatively easy, difficulties arise when trying to create one versatile enough to handle a wider variety of objects. The flexibility of the human hand has led many robotics researchers to borrow the familiar four finger and opposable thumb template that has served us so well, but getting the robotic hand to exert enough force to grip a variety of objects without breaking the more fragile ones is still a difficult task. For this reason a team of researchers has bypassed the traditional human hand and fingers design to create a versatile gripper using everyday coffee grounds and a latex party balloon. Read More
— Robotics

Ranger walking robot sets new world record at 1.34mph

By - July 26, 2010 5 Pictures
It might not have been setting a cracking pace, but a Cornell University robot named Ranger set an unofficial world record on July 6 when it walked 14.3 miles in about 11 hours on a single charge. The untethered, four-legged robot was steered around the 1/8-mile indoor track in Cornell’s Barton Hall by a human operator using a standard toy remote control some 108.5 times. On its record setting journey Ranger made 65,185 steps, beating the former record for an untethered legged robot of 12.8 miles set by Boston Dynamics’ BigDog. Read More
— Science

Has the human gekko's time finally come?

By - February 2, 2010 1 Picture
Researchers at Cornell University have created a palm-sized device that uses water tension as a switchable adhesive bond and can support many times its own weight. The device could usher in a whole new generation of superheroes by allowing shoes or gloves that stick and unstick to walls on command, or see the creation of Post-It notes that can bear loads. Read More
— Science

Single-atom transistor promises new quantum computing breakthroughs

By - December 6, 2009 1 Picture
As far as transistor size is concerned, it doesn't get any smaller than this. An international group of researchers from the Helsinki University of Technology, the University of New South Wales and the University of Melbourne have successfully built a fully working transistor that is just one atom in size, smashing previous records and, more importantly, creating a very unique venue to study phenomena to be exploited in the rapidly developing field of quantum computing. Read More
— Science

'Time telescope' speeds up optical transmission by 27 times

By - October 4, 2009 2 Pictures
Most of today's telecommunication data is encoded at a speed of 10 Gbit/s, but researchers are constantly looking for new ways to push this limit even further. A group of researchers at Cornell University have recently come up with the "time telescope," a sophisticated system that can speed up optical communication by 27 times to an outstanding 270 Gbits/s by squeezing more information into a single flash of light and that, unlike previous solutions, does so in an energy-efficient manner. Read More

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