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October 2016 — November 2016

Restoring the Sense of Touch in Amputees Using Natural Signals of Nervous System (Nov 10, 2016)
Scientists at the University of Chicago and Case Western Reserve University have found a way to produce realistic sensations of touch in two human amputees by directly stimulating the nervous system. The study, published in Science Translational Medicine, confirms earlier research on how the nervous system encodes the intensity, or magnitude, of sensations. It is the second of two groundbreaking publications this month by University of Chicago neuroscientist Sliman Bensmaia, PhD, using neuropros...
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NSF CyberTraining Webinar - Nov. 10th (Nov 9, 2016)
The overarching goal of this program is to prepare, nurture and grow the national scientific workforce for creating, utilizing, and supporting advanced cyberinfrastructure (CI) that enables cutting-edge science and engineering and contributes to the Nation's overall economic competiveness and security. This solicitation calls for developing innovative, scalable training programs to address the emerging needs and unresolved bottlenecks in scientific and engineering workforce development of target...
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New 'Digital Life' Initiative Aims to Create 3-D Models of All Living Creatures (Nov 9, 2016)
Scientists at the University of Massachusetts Amherst led by biologist Duncan Irschick who created the Beastcam Array, a rapid-capture, field portable tabletop system for making high-resolution, full-color 3D models of living organisms, now plan to use it in an ambitious effort to create 3D models of all living organisms. The Beastcam Array consists of 10 fixed arms, each of which can mount three G-16 Canon cameras for a 30-camera array. Small animals placed in the array's center can be quickly ...
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3-D-printed Magnets: How Can You Produce a Magnet with Exactly the Right Magnetic Field? (Nov 8, 2016)
Today, manufacturing strong magnets is no problem from a technical perspective. It is, however, difficult to produce a permanent magnet with a magnetic field of a specific pre-determined shape. That is, until now, thanks to the new solution devised at TU Wien: for the first time ever, permanent magnets can be produced using a 3D printer. This allows magnets to be produced in complex forms and precisely customised magnetic fields, required, for example, in magnetic sensors.



Outsmarting the Art of Camouflage (Nov 8, 2016)
When the American painter Abbott H. Thayer published his book Concealing-Coloration in the Animal Kingdom in 1909, he put forth the hypothesis that animals’ colors served one function and one function only: to camouflage. While that theory has since been disproven (animal colors also play a role in threatening predators and attracting mates), his work made a significant impact on our understanding of camouflage and how it could be used in war. During World War I, both the French and the German...
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NSF CyberTraining Webinar - Nov. 10th (Nov 7, 2016)
The overarching goal of this program is to prepare, nurture and grow the national scientific workforce for creating, utilizing, and supporting advanced cyberinfrastructure (CI) that enables cutting-edge science and engineering and contributes to the Nation's overall economic competiveness and security. This solicitation calls for developing innovative, scalable training programs to address the emerging needs and unresolved bottlenecks in scientific and engineering workforce development of target...
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Digital Rock Physics (Nov 7, 2016)
Fluids flowing underground are fundamental to water and energy security. These flows are important for a variety of applications – tracking groundwater movement, predicting oil recovery, developing carbon sequestration strategies – and they depend on multiphase porous medium systems. Such systems can consist of multiple fluids flowing in rock, sand or soil, says James McClure, a computational scientist with Advanced Research Computing at Virginia Tech in Blacksburg. “Many problems fall wit...
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With New Algorithms, Data Scientists Could Accomplish in Days What Once Took Months (Nov 6, 2016)
Last year, MIT researchers presented a system that automated a crucial step in big-data analysis: the selection of a "feature set," or aspects of the data that are useful for making predictions. The researchers entered the system in several data science contests, where it outperformed most of the human competitors and took only hours instead of months to perform its analyses. In a pair of papers at an IEEE Conference, the team described an approach to automating most of the rest of the process o...
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Can an MIT Computer Learn to Scare You? (Nov 6, 2016)
The threat that machines will act independently of their operators has stoked fears for longer than artificial intelligence has been a concept — but could a computer actually learn to scare us? Enter the Nightmare Machine. Three researchers at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology are seeking to answer that question, using a deep-learning algorithm to teach a computer to produce images of faces and places that scare people. Pinar Yanardag, a postdoctoral researcher on the project, cites lu...
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NSF CyberTraining Webinar - Nov. 10th (Nov 5, 2016)
The overarching goal of this program is to prepare, nurture and grow the national scientific workforce for creating, utilizing, and supporting advanced cyberinfrastructure (CI) that enables cutting-edge science and engineering and contributes to the Nation's overall economic competiveness and security. This solicitation calls for developing innovative, scalable training programs to address the emerging needs and unresolved bottlenecks in scientific and engineering workforce development of target...
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Computer Science/STEM Leaders Explain How to Spark STEM Interest in Youth (Nov 5, 2016)
The future demands a large, diverse pool of innovative scientists, engineers and mathematicians who can work together to solve big problems. The working scientists who lead SC16, the premier international conference showcasing high performance computing, envision and advocate for a future talent pool that looks far larger and more diverse. “Teams are always more successful at solving problems when they include thinkers with many life experiences and perspectives,” said Trish Damkroger, Actin...
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Supercomputing the P53 Protein as a Promising Anticancer Therapy (Nov 4, 2016)
Even though it's almost impossible to see, computational biophysicist Rommie Amaro is using the Stampede supercomputer at the Texas Advanced Computing Center at The University of Texas at Austin to model the largest atomic level system of the tumor suppression protein p53 to date — over 1.5 million atoms. The simulations identify new "pockets" to reactivate p53 which would be a tremendous boost for future anti-cancer drug discovery. Amaro is a professor in the Department of Chemistry and Bioch...
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NCSA Collaboration Helps Discover New Dwarf Planet (Nov 4, 2016)
While cataloguing dark energy in space, scientists made a startling discovery with help from the National Center for Supercomputing Applications (NCSA) supercomputer Blue Waters. The discovery: A new dwarf planet, temporarily named DeeDee. The Chilean telescope at the center of the Dark Energy Survey (DES) discovered the icy planet over the summer. Previous telescopes didn't detect the planet, which is as faint as a single candle 100,000 miles away. Researchers from the University of Michigan wr...
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U.K. Weather Office Gets Exascale Boost (Nov 3, 2016)
Improved weather forecasting and climate change analysis are among the emerging applications for the combination of exascale computing, data analytics and the storage demands each places on data management tasks. European forecasters have been at the forefront of leveraging these technologies. The latest example comes from the U.K.'s national weather service, the Met Office, which announced this week it has selected a trio of HPC vendors to boost the capabilities of its Scientific Processing and...
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NSF CyberTraining Webinar - Nov. 10th (Nov 2, 2016)
The overarching goal of this program is to prepare, nurture and grow the national scientific workforce for creating, utilizing, and supporting advanced cyberinfrastructure (CI) that enables cutting-edge science and engineering and contributes to the Nation's overall economic competiveness and security. This solicitation calls for developing innovative, scalable training programs to address the emerging needs and unresolved bottlenecks in scientific and engineering workforce development of target...
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Advances in Artificial Intelligence Could Lead to Mass Unemployment (Oct 22, 2016)
Experts have warned that rapidly improving artificial intelligence could lead to mass unemployment just days after Google revealed the purchase of a London based start-up dedicated to developing this technology. Speaking on Radio 4’s Today program, Dr Stuart Armstrong from the Future of Humanity Institute at the University of Oxford said that there was a risk that computers could take over human jobs “at a faster rate than new jobs could be generated.”



Lego-Like Wall Produces Acoustic Holograms (Oct 22, 2016)
Research Triangle engineers have developed a simple, energy-efficient way to create three-dimensional acoustic holograms. The technique could revolutionize applications ranging from home stereo systems to medical ultrasound devices. Most everyone is familiar with the concept of visual holograms, which manipulate light to make it appear as though a 3-D object is sitting in empty space. These optical tricks work by shaping the electromagnetic field so that it mimics light bouncing off an actual ob...
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Diamonds Aren't Forever: Team Creates First Quantum Computer Bridge (Oct 21, 2016)
By forcefully embedding two silicon atoms in a diamond matrix, Sandia researchers have demonstrated for the first time on a single chip all the components needed to create a quantum bridge to link quantum computers together. "People have already built small quantum computers," says Sandia researcher Ryan Camacho. "Maybe the first useful one won't be a single giant quantum computer but a connected cluster of small ones." Distributing quantum information on a bridge, or network, could also enable ...
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Meet Luigi: MIT's Sewer-Scouring Robot (Oct 21, 2016)
We've seen used robots as personal assistants, emergency rescuers and even hotel concierges -- but what if they could also do our dirty work? Meet Luigi: the sewer-trawling robot developed by Underworlds -- a project from MIT's Senseable City Lab -- which is designed to harness the gold mine of information lurking in the sewer. Scientists believe that by studying fecal matter, they can predict the spread of communicable diseases, paint a picture of a community's collective health and even influe...
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Meet Luigi: MIT's Sewer-Scouring Robot (Oct 21, 2016)
We've seen used robots as personal assistants, emergency rescuers and even hotel concierges -- but what if they could also do our dirty work? Meet Luigi: the sewer-trawling robot developed by Underworlds -- a project from MIT's Senseable City Lab -- which is designed to harness the gold mine of information lurking in the sewer. Scientists believe that by studying fecal matter, they can predict the spread of communicable diseases, paint a picture of a community's collective health and even influe...
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ORNL Creates Programming System for NVM Main Memory Systems (Oct 20, 2016)
Non-volatile memory (NVM) is playing a more important role in the memory architectures of HPC systems as illustrated by recent deployments and procurements. Yet there exist neither standard language constructs nor portable programming systems that provide support for these types of emerging memory architectures. To address this issue, researchers at the Future Technologies Group at Oak Ridge National Laboratory (ORNL) have developed a novel programming system that extends C with intuitive, langu...
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Novel Tensor Mining Tool to Enable Automated Modeling Described in Big Data (Oct 20, 2016)
Tensors and tensor decompositions, a powerful set of new data mining tools that can be used to model and extract knowledge from multidimensional data, can be automated for more widespread use in Big Data applications. The effectiveness of these innovative tools in a variety of data modeling scenarios is demonstrated in an article published in Big Data. In the article "Unsupervised Tensor Mining for Big Data Practitioners," Evangelos Papalexakis and Christos Faloutsos, Carnegie Mellon University,...
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Women Considered to Write Better Code, Study Suggests (Oct 19, 2016)
American researchers have found that computer code written by women tends to be rated more highly than that written by men. However, women's work is only more highly-approved if their gender is not mentioned, the study suggested. The paper, authored by a group of six students from California Polytechnic State University and North Carolina State University, has been published online, but is not yet peer-reviewed. During their resarch, the team analysed of the behaviour of over a million users of ...
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A New Spin on Superconductivity (Oct 19, 2016)
Researchers from the Harvard John A. Paulson School of Engineering and Applied Sciences (SEAS) have made a discovery that could lay the foundation for quantum superconducting devices. Their breakthrough solves one the main challenges to quantum computing: how to transmit spin information through superconducting materials.



In a First, Brain Computer Interface Helps Paralyzed Man Feel Again (Oct 18, 2016)
Imagine being in an accident that leaves you unable to feel any sensation in your arms and fingers. Now imagine regaining that sensation, a decade later, through a mind-controlled robotic arm that is directly connected to your brain. That is what 28-year-old Nathan Copeland experienced after he came out of brain surgery and was connected to the Brain Computer Interface, developed by researchers at the University of Pittsburgh and UPMC. A team of experts led by Robert Gaunt, assistant professor o...
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