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Mouse embryo generated from STAP cells (Image: Riken)

An international research effort has found that mature animal cells can be shocked into an embryonic state simply by soaking them in acid or putting them under physical stress. The fortuitous breakthrough could prove to be massive for many fields of medical research if the method can be replicated using human cells, something researchers are confident will be possible.  Read More

This schematic illustration of a graphene plasmonic nano-antenna shows how short wavelengt...

Smart dust. Utility fog. Programmable matter. Grey and blue goo. Cooperating swarms of micron-sized devices (motes) offer completely new solutions and capabilities that can hardly be imagined. However, cooperation requires communication, and conventional radio or optical networking simply isn't practical at this size. Now researchers at Georgia Tech have invented a plasmonic graphene nano-antenna that can be efficiently used at millimeter radio wavelengths, taking one more step toward smart dust.  Read More

The 11e series features rubberized bumpers on the outside and strengthened hinges and corn...

Knowing that there are few places that pose more of a hazard to laptops than a schoolbag, Lenovo has announced its Thinkpad 11e series, consisting of four new ruggedized laptops designed specifically to endure the rigors of the school day.  Read More

Mimicking polar bear fur, which is able to insulate the animal's body to temperatures of 9...

Put a polar bear and a biophotonics expert together in a chilly room and what do you get? Potentially, better insulation. When looking to uncover the secrets of the impressive insulation properties of polar bear fur, researchers at the University of Namur in Belgium and the University of Hassan I in Morocco found that radiation plays a larger role than conduction in the insulation of polar animals, such as penguins and polar bears, than previously believed.  Read More

The world's first one-way acoustic circulator controls the direction of sound waves, allow...

A team of researchers at the University of Texas At Austin's Cockrell School of Engineering has effectively disproved the adage that, “if you can hear you can be heard” by creating the world's first one-way acoustic circulator. The simple, compact device, which controls the direction of sound waves, allows the user to hear without being heard.  Read More

By offering substantial rewards for technological solutions to gun safety, the Smart Tech ...

While legislative solutions to curbing gun violence in the US continue to meet fervent opposition, the Smart Tech Foundation, formed to incentivize free-market solutions to firearm safety, aims to take a different route. Through its Smart Tech for Firearms Challenge, it believes circumventing the political debate and fostering innovation in smart gun technology is a viable way to move toward a safer society.  Read More

A 3D-printed pizza that astronauts might one day be able to dig into (Photo: Anjan Contrac...

Snacking on a freshly-made pizza in outer space just got a whole lot closer thanks to Anjan Contractor's 3D pizza printer. Contractor, who won NASA's US$125,000 grant last year to create a 3D printer that could print food for astronauts on missions, has come out with a functional prototype.  Read More

Lockheed Martin has demonstrated a new 30-kilowatt fiber laser (not pictured) produced by ...

In another step forward for laser weapons that brings to mind the Death Star's superlaser, Lockheed Martin has demonstrated a 30-kilowatt fiber laser produced by combining many lasers into a single beam of light. According to the company, this is the highest power laser yet that was still able to maintain beam quality and electrical efficiency, paving the way for a laser weapon system suitable, if not for a Death Star, for a wide range of air, land and sea military platforms.  Read More

Miggo camera straps and grips can also be used as a protective cover

There's no shortage of camera straps or cases out there vying for a place on your DSLR or mirrorless shooter. But the recent Kickstarter-funded Miggo is a little different, in that it's both. When not being used as a traditional strap or wrist grip, it can wrap around your camera and double up as a protective case.  Read More

Supernova 2014J (red circle and arrow) and the starburst galaxy M82 (Photo: NASA/Swift/P. ...

A cloudy night in London led to the discovery of the 21st Century's brightest supernova to date. The new supernova 2014J, the brightest since 1993, is located in the galaxy M82. This Type-Ia supernova has just reached its peak brightness of magnitude 10.6. M82 lies at a distance of only about 12 million light years, which explains the brightness of 2014J in our skies. 2014J is bright enough to be seen in small telescopes or perhaps in (very) large binoculars. We'll tell you how to find it.  Read More

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