Gina Miller (
Fri, 6 Aug 1999 16:05:31 -0700

*New process making carbon fiber grids competitive for concrete
reinforcement. Penn State engineers have developed a new computer-controlled, flexible
manufacturing process that promises to make carbon fiber concrete reinforcement grids more competitive with the heavier, corrosion prone, labor-intensive steel rods currently used.

*Genetic Tool Kit Will Aid Scientists in Their Search for New Medical
STANFORD, Calif. (BW HealthWire) - A Stanford-led team of international scientists is constructing a panel of mutant yeast that will serve as the tool to determine the function of each gene in baker's yeast - and by analogy, the role of many human genes.

*Scientists track down gene that causes narcolepsy

*Simulating Protein Folding Based On Physical Laws
Researchers at Cornell University have had their best success yet in simulating the folding of a protein solely from the physical laws that govern the behavior of its atoms.

*Diamonds Made of "Stardust," UMass Geoscientist Suggests
Overview of research casts doubt on previous theory AMHERST, Mass. ­ In the Aug. 6 issue of the journal Science, University of Massachusetts geoscientist Stephen Haggerty contends that some of the carbon in diamonds comes from outer space.

*Genetics in the Los Angeles Times Aug 4, 99

*Birth of a cybernation

Cyber Yugoslavia will be created on 9 September, a virtual country where anyone can be a citizen and a minister.

*Researchers at IBM have discovered ways to record information dramatically
faster to a computer's hard-drive or floppy disk, promising one day to make commonplace ultra-fast storage devices.

*At the height of the baseball season, NASA is going to stretch deep into
the outfield to catch bits of a falling star. But it'll be a night game, in the wee hours of Aug. 12 or 13 (next Thursday or Friday) when the Perseids meteor stream is high in the sky.

*"Maximize mental performance with Brain Housekeeping 99!" Boston Globe Aug
6, 99

*Genetic algorithms and similar evolutionary programming techniques have
solved a variety of nondeterministic polynomial time problems (NPs) that proved impossible to crack using conventional techniques. Yet other NPs have proven resistant to genetic algorithms. Ingo Rechenberg of the Technical University of Berlin claimed to know why, at the recent Genetic and Evolutionary Computation Conference.

*Washington Post Opinion "You say to-MAY-to, I say to-MAH-to! You say
genetics, I say genomics!"

*In an attempt to burnish its tarnished reputation for network security,
Microsoft issued an open challenge on Tuesday to the hacking community. But potential testers barely got a chance to attempt to break Windows 2000’s security system, as the test server Microsoft offered crashed and stayed down for most of the past 24 hours.,4538,2309474,00.html

There's a great line in Ghostbusters where one of the characters says: "Listen... do you smell something?" Well now, those mixed senses are becoming a reality. Using a high-resolution video technique on laboratory rats, neurobiologists at Duke University have captured the first detailed images of the living brain in the act of recognizing specific odor molecules. The scientists say their achievement will open the way to deciphering the brain's internal "language" of smell. The scientists recorded images of the rats brain as they were exposed to chemical odorants that smelled like bananas, spearmint, and peanut butter. Even more exciting, scientists say they’ve tested their discovery on other mammals and found the same kind of reaction. They believe in the future this new visualization system can help us understand the machinery of the learning process.


If you’ve got a laptop computer, you’re no doubt sick of the limited battery life. What if in the future, you didn’t need batteries at all – the power would simply come from the energy you generate using the computer. One inventor thinks he’s found just such a solution, and his employers at Compaq liked it so much, they bought it from him and patented it. The power comes from the energy expended typing on a keyboard. This action recharges the batteries faster, meaning computer batteries in the future wouldn’t have to be so large, or they could last longer. It works like this: the shaft of each key has tiny permanent magnets attached to it, and each shaft is surrounded by wire coils. Every time a key is depressed, the magnets move through the coils, inducing a tiny current that is used to charge a capacitor. When the capacitor has a high enough charge, it recharges the battery.


It looks like one of those photo booths you see at the airport. But instead of taking your picture, this one models a three-dimensional computer image of yourself which you can then send into Internet chat rooms to show people what you look like. Even more interesting – for now, the kiosks will let you pretend to be anyone, of either sex. It works like this: The booth takes four digital photos of you, your front, back and sides-full-length, clothing and all. These images are then stretched or squeezed to fit the shape of body you tell it you have, then it’s combined into a 3D "wire-mesh" model with movable joints. You don’t even have to wait for the five-minute development time because your 3D model is transferred electronically to a secure website from which it can be downloaded later. (These last three: from Tod Maffin)

*A hacker used an unusually clever exploit yesterday to vandalize a
prominent Internet site devoted to computer security, the online equivalent of a thief burglarizing police headquarters. The embarrassing electronic assault against the AntiOnline site occurred days after other hackers altered the Web site for Symantec Corp., whose software is used by millions of consumers to protect against viruses and electronic snoops.

Gina "Nanogirl" Miller
Nanotechnology Industries
Alternate E-mail
"Nanotechnology: solutions for the future."