Tag Archives: singularity

Growing Organs in the Lab

This research isn’t something that might happen in the distant future.  It’s being used today to grow fresh organs, open up new ways to study disease and the immune system, and reduce the need for organ transplants. Organ-farming laboratories are popping up across the planet, and showing impressive results. Here we look at the state of the union of a rapidly advancing field called tissue engineering: what’s been accomplished so far, and what’s right around the corner.

Patients who undergo organ transplants require loads of toxic drugs to suppress their immune systems; otherwise their body might reject the organ. But tissue engineering could make organ transplants a thing of the past. By using a patient’s cells to grow new types of tissue in the lab, researchers are finding new ways to custom-engineer you new body parts by using your own cells.

At the cutting edge of organ engineering is Tengion, a clinical-stage biotech company based outside of Philadelphia. Their most successful research to date led to the creation of the Neo-Bladder. Tengion takes some of your cells and grows them in culture for five to seven weeks around a biodegradable scaffold. When the organ is ready, it can be transplanted without the need to suppress the patient’s immune system (because the organ was grown from the patient’s own cells, it carries no risk of rejection). Once the organ is in, the scaffold degrades and the bladder adapts to its new (old) home.

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X-Prize CEO Peter Diamandis Announces the Formation of a SINGULARITY UNIVERSITY

So it is true! Peter Diamandis, Chair and CEO of the increasingly mighty X-Prize Foundation, and some high-level folks are working on something big called a “Singularity University.” Who else could be involved? It seems like Ray Kurzweil would be a prime candidate, especially considering their back-to-back presentations at today’s Summit.

Might this be a first step toward a Singularity X-Prize? 🙂 What do you think a “Singularity University” might consist of?

source

I’ve been let in on some juicy details by a guy who knows more about this.

I promised not to give away too much detail, but I know some big people are involved in this.

Glad to see people taking action… I hope this grows big.

Nanodiamond drug device could transform cancer treatment

A Northwestern University research team has developed a promising nanomaterial-based biomedical device that could be used to deliver chemotherapy drugs locally to sites where cancerous tumors have been surgically removed.

The flexible microfilm device, which resembles a piece of plastic wrap and can be customized easily into different shapes, has the potential to transform conventional treatment strategies and reduce patients’ unnecessary exposure to toxic drugs. The device takes advantage of nanodiamonds, an emergent technology, for sustained drug release.

The researchers demonstrated that the device releases the chemotherapy agent Doxorubicin in a sustained and consistent manner — a requirement of any implanted device for localized chemotherapy. The results of the study are published online today (Oct. 2) by the journal ACS Nano.

“The thin device — a sort of blanket or patch — could be used to treat a localized region where residual cancer cells might remain after a tumor is removed,” said Dean Ho, assistant professor of biomedical engineering and mechanical engineering at Northwestern’s McCormick School of Engineering and Applied Science, who led the research.

If a surgical oncologist, for example, was removing a tumor from the breast or brain, the device could be implanted in the affected area as part of the same surgery. This approach, which confines drug release to a specific location, could mitigate side effects and complications from other chemotherapy treatments.

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Intel touts progress toward intelligent computers

I hope Intel warned the Luddites and pessimists away at the door, because the chipmaker had a lot of bullish statements Thursday about its belief that computers will become smarter than humans.

At the Intel Developer Forum here, Intel Chief Technology Officer Justin Rattner showed off a number of technologies in computing, robotics, and communication that he cited as evidence that Ray Kurzweil’s concept of “singularity,” when machine intelligence surpasses human intelligence, is impending. Demonstrations spotlighted the wireless transmission of electrical power, dextrous robots with new sensory abilities, a direct interface to the brain, programmable materials that can be used for shape-shifting devices such as resizable cell phones, and silicon photonics that enables chips to communicate with photons rather than electrons.

“We’re making steady progress toward Ray Kurzweil’s singularity,” Rattner said.

Intel of course remains at its heart a chipmaker, and Rattner began with a brief tour, assisted by Mike Garner, senior technologist for Intel’s emerging materials group, of various successors to the current complimentary metal oxide semiconductor (CMOS) process used to make processors. Future ideas that pack ever more computing capacity into a given volume include spintronics, quantum computing, carbon nanotubes.

It’s good to see a big name such as Intel take seriously Kurzweil’s ideas on accelerating progress, the Singularity, etc.

The more people are working towards a common goal, the better.

Synthetic Black Hole Event Horizon Created in UK Laboratory

Synthetic Black Hole Event Horizon Created in UK Laboratory

Researchers at St. Andrews University, Scotland, claim to have found a way to simulate an event horizon of a black hole – not through a new cosmic observation technique, and not by a high powered supercomputer… but in the laboratory. Using lasers, a length of optical fiber and depending on some bizarre quantum mechanics, a “singularity” may be created to alter a laser’s wavelength, synthesizing the effects of an event horizon. If this experiment can produce an event horizon, the theoretical phenomenon of Hawking Radiation may be tested, perhaps giving Stephen Hawking the best chance yet of winning the Nobel Prize.

So how do you create a black hole? In the cosmos, black holes are created by the collapse of massive stars. The mass of the star collapses down to a single point (after running out of fuel and undergoing a supernova) due to the massive gravitational forces acting on the body. Should the star exceed a certain mass “limit” (i.e. the Chandrasekhar limit – a maximum at which the mass of a star cannot support its structure against gravity), it will collapse into a discrete point (a singularity). Space-time will be so warped that all local energy (matter and radiation) will fall into the singularity. The distance from the singularity at which even light cannot escape the gravitational pull is known as the event horizon. High energy particle collisions by cosmic rays impacting the upper atmosphere might produce micro-black holes (MBHs). The Large Hadron Collider (at CERN, near Geneva, Switzerland) may also be capable of producing collisions energetic enough to create MBHs. Interestingly, if the LHC can produce MBHs, Stephen Hawking’s theory of “Hawking Radiation” may be proven should the MBHs created evaporate almost instantly.

Hawking predicts that black holes emit radiation. This theory is paradoxical, as no radiation can escape the event horizon of a black hole. However, Hawking theorizes that due to a quirk in quantum dynamics, black holes can produce radiation.

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Our Technological Future – Mixed Bag #20

Can you believe this is mixed bag #20 already?

I am sooooooo gonna have the most gigantic collection of mixed bags in the entire blogosphere if I keep this up long enough.

Anyways… enjoy.

Cyborgs Coming Soon (2008)

Pass the Virtual Scalpel, Nurse

3D Printers to Dip Below $5,000 USD This Year

The Most Realistic Virtual Reality Room In The World

Stem cells speed growth of healthy liver tissue

Expressive robot computers

Raytheon Develops World’s First Polymorphic Computer

The Memory Hacker

Stem cell therapy shows promise for rescuing deteriorating vision

British team grows human heart valve from stem cells

Salamanders Re-grow Lost Limbs, Could Human Medicine Benefit From Understanding Regeneration?

The Age of Cheap, Plastic Robots

Computer Model Behaves Like Humans On Visual Categorization Task

Diabetics cured in stem-cell treatment advance

Isolation Of Stem Cells May Lead To A Treatment For Hearing Loss

Lives of a Cell, the 3-D Version

Liver regeneration may be simpler than previously thought

‘Fat’ gene found by scientists

Learn Like A Human

‘Exercise pill’ switches on gene that tells cells to burn fat

Scientists Make Skin Grow New Hair Follicles By Itself

Mouse cortex simulated on supercomputer

45-minute operation to restore sight to millions

40% efficient solar cells to be used for solar electricity

Hydrogen breakthrough could open the road to carbon-free cars

Daily pill to beat genetic diseases

Deep brain implants show bionic vision promise

Our Technological Future – Mixed Bag #16

Another cool bag of technology links.

Even more than in my previous post, but collected in about half the time.

How GPUs Work (have a look at tomorrow’s level of realism in computer graphics)


James Bond-style strap-on jet pack flying wing to extend special forces


Detailed Roadmap of the 21st Century (should you have the desire to become a lucid dreamer… this clip will provide you with plenty of inspiration I think)

Dexter Walks (biped robot)

Future Forecasts for the Next 25 Years

Led Paint Drawing Technology

Lie detector software catches e-mail fibbers

Xerox Inkless Printer

Inter-planetary Internet expands to Mars and beyond

Chemical origami shrinks 2D discs into 3D objects

Nanotech Chain Mail Fabric a Perfect Fit

Milky Way Black Hole May Be a Colossal Particle Accelerator

The Future of Garbage

Fuel Cell Car and Experiment Kit

Electricity from Seaweed

Mice get smarter with drug (requires login which you can get at www.bugmenot.com)

Body shop (cybernetics)

Carbon Nanotubes versus HIV

Bionic cat eyes help in battle against human blindness

What If the Singularity Does NOT Happen

Brain works more chaotically than previously thought

Chinese Scientists Control Pigeons With Brain Implant

First steps to develop artificial retina with nanotechnology

Scientists invent real-life `Star Trek Tricorder`

Gravity waves to show birth of cosmos

A hidden twist in the black hole information paradox

Regain walking ability with robot-driven leg support

The 12 greenest cars of 2007

Solar powered robot chariot

Nanotechnology Seen as Answer to Counterfeiters

Researchers safely regenerate failing mouse hearts with programmed embryonic stem cells

Let Robots Sweat the Boring Stuff

NASA tests moon building

Liposuctioned fat stem cells to repair bodies

Milestone for giant physics lab

Singularities and Nightmares

Fantastic animation that visualizes physiology of the body

Robots and Emotion

Nanotechnology in a small world

Army Developing Paralysis Beam

Algorithm helps computers beat humans at Go

Man Invents Machine To Cure Cancer

Electric switch could turn on limb regeneration

Easy Cheap Solar Heat

Microscope discerns atoms of different elements

The thinnest material ever and could revolutionise computers and medicine

AMD Demonstrates Accelerated Computing Solution that Breaks Teraflop Barrier

Our Technological Future – Mixed Bag #15

Here’s another collection of technology links that I’ve collected in the past week.

I can’t believe there’s 43 of’em!!!

I’ll do anything to please my readers. 😉

Robot Fish (very cool video)


Renewable fuels will revolutionize agriculture, says U.S. official

Trials for ‘bionic’ eye implants

Real game characters ‘next year’

Robot-driven cars on roads by 2030: scientist

Science Finding Ways to Regrow Fingers

Grid computes 420 years worth of data in four months

Artificial lung a surgical first in North America

Dominican prostitutes, facing AIDS crisis, test experimental vaccine

Google to rule the Earth

Google’s Page urges scientists to market themselves
(also talks about AI)

Labgrown Replacement Teeth Fill the Gap

Liposuctioned fat stem cells to repair bodies


Scientists Create Super-Heavy Element

Steven Kosslyn on increasing human intelligence

Cheap solar power poised to undercut oil and gas by half

Pet prosthesis – Dolphin recovers swimming ability with artificial fin

Robotic jacket has power up its sleeve (great picture)

Science finds new ways to regrow fingers

Tangled nanowires morph water droplets

Monkey Controls Robotic Arm with Mind (video)

A Tool Worthy of Batman’s Utility Belt

Biologically Inspired Vision Systems

The Open Source Singularity

Vivid on-line videos demonstrate Superbot progress

Solar powered car

Intel Pulls 45nm Xeon Launch Into 2007

Selling Homeowners a Solar Dream

Korean researchers aiming for 100 GB flash memory cards

Virgin-birth method promises ethical stem cells

Solar Foil Technology to Cut Cost of Solar Power

Scientists Produce Neurons From Human Skin

Super Robots Gear Up for Space

The Promise of Personal Supercomputers

Darpa Chief Speaks (talks about AI)

Software That Will This Sentence Fix

Sharpest Manmade Thing

Einstein + bacteria DNA = organic computer breakthrough

Air Car Tantalisingly Close

PG&E eyes power grid plan to boost electric cars

Emotion robots learn from people

Scientists working out bugs for use in biofuel production

Making torn tendons tough

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Our Technological Future – Mixed Bag #13

Cloning mice from stem cells?

Curing autism?

Building CPU’s with 80 cores?

Reading the mind?

Regenerating teeth?

Nothing seems out of reach for modern science these days.

Have a look for yourself…

Scientists Clone Mice From Hair Follicle Stem Cell

Biology Goes Open Source

Fermions Do Not Travel Together: Physicists Demonstrate Expected Effect Of Quantum Theory

Intel shows off 80-core processor

Revealing secret intentions in the brain

Reversal of Symptons in an Autism Spectrum Disorder

Reactor upgrades help researchers study nuclear fusion as energy source

Brain scan ‘can read your mind’

Computers mimicking the brain

A Spherical Solar Cell From Japan: The Sphelar

Scientists Develop ‘Natural’ Breast Implants

Kurzweil: Biotech Will Drive Software Security

Intel Prototype May Herald a New Age of Processing

Envisioning the Future (of personal healthcare)

Possibities for self regeneration of teeth