Month: May 2004

  • The Universe We Don’t Know

    70 percent of the mass of the universe is made up of something called dark energy. Most of the rest of the universe is made up of something called dark matter, and only a very small percentage of the mass is the type of mass we see all around us. Even the scientists who use […]

  • One Cause of Aging: Mitochondrial Mutation

    Scientists at the Karolinska Institute in Stockholm, Sweden have found a direct connection between the mutation of mitochondrial DNA in animal cells and the process of aging. Mitochondria, the tiny engines of cells, produce oxidants that have been implicated in cell damage over time, and their DNA may bear the brunt of the oxidant assault. […]

  • Employment Opportunities in the Space Sciences

    Space scientists in the United States are generally underpaid and competition for the few available jobs can be fierce. The future holds both good and bad news. Especially in planetary science and astronomy, the increase in NASA missions to the planets is opening up opportunities everywhere. The Space Science Institute in Colorado is advertising openings […]

  • More Images of Saturn

    NASA is now releasing a new image from Cassini a day. On May 10, Cassini imaged the shadows of Saturn’s rings on its surface and also the swirling bands of the planet’s atmosphere. Cassini is now officially in the Saturn planetary system as the gravity of Saturn holds more sway than the gravity of the […]

  • Ring Shepherds

    It looks like the mission to Saturn is ramping up…today NASA released a new image from Cassini- Huygens less than a week after the last image. The outer visible ring is called the F-ring and in this image from May 1, 2004 you can see the two shepherd moons, Prometheus and Pandora, on either side […]

  • Latest Image of Titan

    Last Thursday NASA released a new image of Titan taken by Cassini-Huygens on May 5, 2004. The image is higher quality than anything that can be taken from Earth. As of today, Cassini-Huygens is just 37 days away from insertion into orbit around Saturn and only 18 days away from passing by Phoebe, one of […]

  • Display Technologies Approach Consumer Release Dates

    Samsung will release a 17-inch organic light-emitting diode (OLED) display in 2005. OLED technology consumes less power than LCD and is thinner and lighter. To date, OLED has shown up in much smaller formats for cell phones, car radio screens and digital cameras. Seiko Epson has built a 40-inch organic electroluminescence (OEL) display and plans […]

  • Verizon to Offer FTTP

    Verizon Communications is launching bundled phone, data and video services [defunct link] using “fiber to the premises” technology in Keller, Texas. They plan to expand services to one million homes in nine states by the end of this year and another two million homes next year. The late 1990s saw fiber optics backbones being built […]

  • The Future of Dentistry

    Laser drills are the current cutting edge tools being used in some dentist’s offices today, but a new generation of technology is just around the corner. Wired has an article that follows the expected progression of technology over the next ten years, until the day when cavities are cured by a childhood vaccination and lost […]

  • Stem Cell Bank Available in Britain

    Britain has just opened the world’s first embryonic stem cell bank. This bank will supply stem cell lines to researchers looking for insight into and possible cures for various medical conditions. Federal funding for such research is prohibited in the United States by an executive order from President Bush. A few states such as New […]

  • The Latest and Greatest Graphics Cards

    NVIDIA and ATI recently announced their next-generation graphic chips, the NV40 and the R420, respectively. Both are remarkable because they offer two times the power as the previous generation. According to the benchmarks, the ATI R420 holds a slight edge. Both chips will take advantage of the new PCI Express interface, the connection bridge that […]

  • Gay and Married in Massachusetts

    Social trends appear to be following the same path as technological progress. Today marks the first day that same-sex couples can get married in the first state to allow such marriages, Massachusetts. There are still hurdles ahead for the couples, not the least of which is the movement in Massachusetts to amend the state constitution […]

  • Where is the Science and Technology!?

    You might be wondering what the hell is going on with the blog. Where is all the science and technology? This blog focuses primarily on the frontiers of science and technology, but these frontiers also intersect the frontiers of thought and society, among others. For example, now that gay couples can marry (for the […]

  • I Was the First One Naked, but Nobody Noticed!

    A few years ago I coined the word “cybernudism” to describe the philosophy of giving up any privacy to combat security and privacy issues. If you have no secrets, nobody can hold anything against you. At its most literal, cybernudism labels the strange phenomenon of people using their webcams to document their lives down to […]

  • The Future of Multimedia

    The above entry is a great example of how video can sometimes convey an idea much more easily and dramatically than text. In the future, text, images, audio, video and other datatypes will merge into a multimedia whole that will be far more effective in conveying information than any previous technology. The exact balance of […]

  • Creature from Cornstarch Lagoon

    When you stir cornstarch it begins to thicken, unlike most liquids, due to the property of shear thickening. Physicist Robert Deegan of the University of Texas in Austin and other team members vibrated a tray of cornstarch and then blew holes in the surface with a straw. The holes remained intact at high enough accelerations. […]

  • Computing Predictions – Update 05/04/04

    I maintain a spreadsheet of predictions based on Moore’s laws and the trends I see in computing technologies. Today I reviewed my predictions and made necessary adjustments: Increased hard drive capacity from 0.40 to .50 by 07/01/04 Decreased CPU speed from .0060 to .0040 by 07/01/04 Hard drive capacity is growing faster than I expected. […]