brindafella (702231) writes "Researchers have made what they describe as an "almost embarrassing" discovery, that twisted nylon fishing line can form a "powerful, large-stroke, high-stress artificial muscles" capable of lifting as much as 100 times more weight than human muscles and contracting by 49%, and "generate 5.3 kilowatts of mechanical work per kilogram of muscle weight, similar to that produced by a jet engine." They twisted the fishing line, then heated it to 'set' the shape-memory muscle. The scientists are from the Australian Research Centre of Excellence for Electromaterials Science at the University of Wollongong, and the University of Texas. It's published in Science magazine." Link to Original Source top
3D model of Australia's Great Barrier Reef & Choral Sea
CSIRO Eureka Prize for Leadership in Science — Winner: Professor Frank Caruso, University of Melbourne — This international nanotechnology expert has won the CSIRO Eureka Prize for Leadership in Science for his leadership in developing nanotechnology-enabled materials for biomedical applications.
Macquarie University Eureka Prize for Outstanding Young Researcher — Winner: Dr Kerrie Wilson, University of Queensland — Targeted spending provides more bang for the buck when it comes to protecting threatened species, according to new guidelines developed by the University of Queensland’s Dr Kerrie Wilson.
Australian Museum University of Sydney Sleek Geeks Science Eureka Prize – Secondary — Winner: The Spectacular Spider, Brandon Gifford, Casino High School, NSW — A mini-documentary about spiders has won final-year school student Brandon Gifford the 2013 Australian Museum University of Sydney Sleek Geeks Science Eureka Prize for secondary students. It’s his third win in a row." top
Woman with cancer, re-implanted with ovarian tissue, is pregnant with twins.
brindafella (702231) writes "A world first! When Australian woman, Vali, was diagnosed with cancer, and treated, she was not looking at a good outcome. Yet, TWO cancer treatments later, she is pregnant with twin girls. Her ovaries were sectioned and frozen before the cancer treatment. She has had her own flesh implanted outside her pelvis. Eggs were gathered, IVF techniques used later with her male partner, and her uterus is now carrying two viable girls due to be born in about 3 months. Melbourne IVF's Associate Professor Kate Stern has explained the process today." Link to Original Source top
brindafella (702231) writes "The head gorilla at Australia's most prestigious zoo, Taronga Park Zoo in Sydney, is about to be retired. Kibabu is a 'silverback' and, at age 36, is about to be taken away from his family and retired. His replacement is a 12-year-old silverback from France. It's a natural thing in the wild, but Kibabu is not going to be in a fight that he loses to a younger male. He'll just go. His new home in retirement will be another zoo, about 150km away, at Mogo." top
Australia's latest and best computer - a Japanese god
brindafella (702231) writes "Australia's latest and best computer has been unveiled at the Australian National University in Canberra, within the National Computational Infrastructure's National Facility. Raijin is named after a Japanese god of lightning and thunder, but the name also sounds like "raging" so some geek humour may be involved. It has: 57,472 cores in the compute nodes; approximately 160 TBytes of main memory; Infiniband FDR interconnect; and, approximately 10 PBytes of usable fast filesystem (for short-term scratch space). The brand name is Fujitsu. Peak performance is approximately 1.2 PFlops. It runs CentOS 6.4 Linux distribution (based on RHEL6.4)." top
brindafella (702231) writes "Researchers at the Australian National University, Monash University and La Trobe University, show life-sized, computer-generated images of naked men to female subjects, altering the size and proportions of the torso, legs and arms, and... the "male-bit". The research, while only semi-conclusive, shows that "size does matter". Dr Brian Mautz of ANU says that the research results need to be pursued further, although the story isn’t quite as simple as ‘bigger is better’; Larger penises were much more attractive on taller men than shorter men. Yet, it appears that 13cm (flacid [floppy]) is one sweet-spot, although that excludes a vast majority of men. Says Mautz, "Finding a partner is quite a complicated process and who knows how females end up choosing their males."" Link to Original Source top
Sharp-shooting Linux-powered sniper rifle, or not.
brindafella (702231) writes "When is a sniper rifle not a sniper-rifle? When it is intended for hunting game, of course. The 1,000-1,200 year/metre, US$17,000 Linux-powered rifle uses a special sighting device to 'designate' the target and then only fires its.338 Lapua Magnum round when the rifle is pointing along the computed line-of-fire. Even a novice can shoot this rifle accuretely over its maximum effective range." top
" rel="nofollow">brindafella writes "Australian research on insulin, using X-ray chrystallography at the Australian Synchrotron, has revealed how molecules of insulin bind to a protein on the cells of the body. Results have been published
in the journal Nature. Specific results relate to the type 1 insulin-like growth factor receptor (IGF1R), and are expected to create great interest among companies producing insulin for diabetics, possibly leading to a tablet form of insulin (rather than the current need for an injection.)" Link to Original Source top
Australian Prime Minister's spoof "apocalypse" speech goes viral in China
brindafella writes "Australian Prime Minister, Julia Gillard, recorded a spoof speech about the Mayan calendar apocalypse several days ago, for radio station "Triple J". Gillard said in part, "Whether the final blow comes from flesh eating zombies, demonic hell beasts or from the total triumph of K-pop, if you know one thing about me it is this: I will always fight for you to the very end."
The speech has been picked up in China on Sina Weibo (China's Twitter) and has achieved well over 23,000 repeats, without anyone picking up the irony.
This is just days after another Australian radio station, 2Day FM, created an international sensation with a prank (spoof) call to the hospital in London where Princess Catherine was undergoing treatment, and a nurse killed herself following the revelation of the prank." Link to Original Source top
brindafella writes "As discussed in a Letterman "Top 10", a pair of highly trained dogs from New Zealand have passed their doggie driving test, guiding a modified car along a race track on live television. In a project aimed at increasing pet adoptions from animal shelters, a group of cross-breed, rescued dogs from Auckland were taught to drive a car — steering, pedals and all — to show the potential of unwanted canines. See video of Porter and Monty." Link to Original Source top
brindafella writes "Romney has ranted to major donors in a conference call, saying that President Obama in effect bought votes by what he offered to the minorities (also read '47%'). "The Obama campaign was following the old playbook of giving a lot of stuff to groups that they hoped they could get to vote for them and be motivated to go out to the polls, specifically the African American community, the Hispanic community and young people." He said, "In each case they were very generous in what they gave to those groups," including mention of "free contraceptives".
Of the future, Romney said, "So now we're looking and saying, 'OK, what can we do going forward?'," he said. "But frankly we're still so troubled by the past, it's hard to put together our plans for the future."" Link to Original Source top
brindafella writes "Astronomers using the Very Large Array radio telescope in New Mexico have found two black holes in M22, a 12 billion year old globular cluster located only about 10,000 light-years from Earth. These are each several times the mass of our Sun, and are actively feeding from nearby companion stars, as confirmed by X-ray observations using the Chandra space telescope. The astronomers expect to find other black holes." Link to Original Source top
2011/12 Australian Baseball League winnwe: Perth Heat
brindafella writes "In a landmark case, the Federal Court in Australia has allowed a major non-rights-holding telco to 'broadcast' sport onto client's mobile phones, thus undermining the possible income streams of sporting bodies. The judgement, made on Wednesday 1 February 2012, partially settles a case between Singtel Optus Pty Ltd (the telco) and National Rugby League Investments Pty Ltd (No 2) that sells the rights to the rugby league coverage. This article explains the case in plain language.
The judge declined to determine some matters of possible infringement, notably, "These include whether Optus infringes copyright because the technology used to make a recording in the format suitable for certain Apple devices creates and stores six temporary files of 10 seconds duration every minute and then deletes the first 10-second file as the latest one is added one minute later."" Link to Original Source top
brindafella writes "Thirteen years ago, two teams of astronomers and physicists independently made the same stark discovery: Not only is the universe expanding like a vast inflating balloon, but its expansion is speeding up. And, the two teams are recognised with the 2011 Nobel Prize in Physics.
In essence, they proved that Einstein's "biggest mistake" (the cosmological constant, to create a 'stable universe') was actually a clever theoretical prediction that there was something else happening — dark energy." Link to Original Source top
brindafella writes "Scientists have obtained a DNA genomic sequence from a 100 year old, voluntarily donated hair sample from a full-blood Australian Aboriginal man. This shows "Aboriginal Australians are descendants of an early human dispersal into eastern Asia, possibly 62,000 to 75,000 years ago. This dispersal is separate from the one that gave rise to modern Asians 25,000 to 38,000 years ago. [They] also [found] evidence of gene flow between populations of the two dispersal waves prior to the divergence of Native Americans from modern Asian ancestors. [Their] findings support the hypothesis that present-day Aboriginal Australians descend from the earliest humans to occupy Australia, likely representing one of the oldest continuous populations outside Africa." A news story gives more detail." Link to Original Source