Sciency News 12-19-2012

Links to some fascinating stories in science this week.

Father-daughter duo have the world’s first brain-to-brain ‘telepathic’ conversation

It should be fairly obvious why, all technological considerations aside, there has been much more research into letting machines extract our thoughts, rather than insert them. Mind reading is a scary-enough concept all on its own — but mind writing? It calls to mind the hacker deities of cyber punk novels; skinny, trench-swathed Neos projecting e-thoughts into the skulls of passing civilians. With such basic issues of privacy on the line, it took the trusting relationship between UK scientist Christopher James and his adventurous young daughter to give us our first stab at developing real telepathic, brain-to-brain communication technology. See the full article HERE.

early attempts

Early experiment in brain-to-brain communication


The Machine That Will Help End TB

Nearly 1.5 million people die from tuberculosis every year, even though most cases can be cured with routine antibiotic treatments. One country’s fight to get the ancient scourge under control has an unlikely hero: a simple diagnostic test. Check out the whole article here.

TB test

TB bacteria in a GeneXpert cartridge (blue, foreground) can be detected in under two hours. Sputum samples (purple and green caps) take weeks to culture.

How Your Brain Corrupts Your Shopping Choices

We’ve talked about the stupid things you do when shopping before, but those are just part of the problem. The other big issue? You have cognitive biases that sabotage your decisions, cause you to waste money, and buy things you ay not even really want. Let’s dig into a few of the worst ways your brain corrupts your choices when when you’re shopping. Read the whole article here.


Effects of marketing and your brain on shopping behavior


Hubble Space Telescope achieves deepest cosmic view yet

Jonathan Amos By Jonathan Amos Science correspondent, BBC News

UDFj-39546284 Objects like UDFj-39546284 are at the limit of the Hubble telescope’s vision

Hubble astronomers have observed deeper into space than ever before.

In doing so, they have identified six new galaxies of stars that formed just a few hundred million years after the Big Bang itself.

The study also updates a distance estimate for a seventh galaxy, placing it further back in time than any object previously identified.

Called UDFj-39546284, this is seen when the cosmos was less than 3% of its current age.

The new Hubble telescope investigation was led by Richard Ellis from the California Institute of Technology (Caltech) and colleagues at Edinburgh University, Jim Dunlop and Ross McLure.

Read the whole article here. It is fascinating.


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