Maria_Celeste (2490696) writes "Researchers at Georgia Tech have developed a glove-device, which after 2 hours of wear, enables the user to play Beethoven’s “Ode to Joy.” The glove includes a flat vibration motor, and five tiny vibrators, which "buzz" the fingers in a pattern while worn. The researchers "believe that the repeated buzzing from the glove creates a muscle memory that enables a wearer to learn to play a song with far less practice than it would take without haptic stimulation." The technology could also have applications for spinal cord injuries, according to IEEE's Spectrum." top
Maria_Celeste (2490696) writes "Microsoft researchers are using 3-D motion sensors, cameras, and “head related transfer function” (HRTF) to build a headphone-based personal 3-D audio environments — the aural equivalent of next-gen virtual reality goggles.
MIT Tech Review's Tom Simonite writes
In a demonstration of the technology at Microsoft’s Silicon Valley lab, I put on a pair of wireless headphones that made nearby objects suddenly burst into life. A voice appeared to emanate from a cardboard model of a portable radio. Higher quality music seemed to come from a fake hi-fi speaker. And a stuffed bird high off the ground produced realistic chirps. As I walked around, the sounds changed so that the illusion never slipped as their position relative to my ears changed.
Maria_Celeste (2490696) writes "In the middle of a major drought, Californians' demand for groundwater is causing at least one 2-sq-mile area to subside by 1 foot per year, according to one researcher. Other areas are subsiding as well, but at less dramatic rates. Not only does that kind of subsidence jeopardize infrastructure (roads, pipelines, etc.), it increases flood risk as well. More importantly, it could put future groundwater reserves at risk by compressing the space available for storage — and minimizing California's ability to outlast future droughts." Link to Original Source top
Strongest evidence yet of two distinct human cognitive systems
Maria_Celeste (2490696) writes "New research appears to demonstrate that humans use two distinguishable systems to categorize the objects in their world. They've termed these systems explicit and implicit. Lead author J. David Smith, Ph.D. (University of Buffalo) explains the difference this way in Science Daily. When you select a cereal named 'Chocoholic' from the store shelf, consider why you are doing so. Is it a deliberate, explicit choice, or is it possibly an implicit-procedural chocolate reaction, one triggered by processes, memories and so on, of which you are generally unaware? The paper appears in the the journal Psychological Science." Link to Original Source top
Google hosts fundraiser for climate change-denying US senator
Maria_Celeste (2490696) writes "Google, which prides itself on building a "better web that is better for the environment", is hosting a fundraiser for the most notorious climate change denier in Congress, it has emerged. The lunch, at the company's Washington office, will benefit the Oklahoma Republican Jim Inhofe, who has made a career of dismissing climate change as a "hoax" on the Senate floor. Proceeds of the 11 July lunch, priced at $250 to $2,500, will also go to the national Republican Senatorial Committee." Link to Original Source