Friday, May 19, 2017

Be Careful What You Believe...

For example, researchers found students who were least proficient often overestimated their own abilities.  
“The skills they lacked were the same skills required to recognize their incompetence,” Fry said. “The incompetent are often blessed with an inappropriate confidence buoyed by something that feels to them like knowledge.”
It's called the Dunning-Kruger effect.

Knitting Wounds Without Scars

A glue made from mussel secretions and a synthesized skin protein helps wounds in rats to heal seamlessly. The skin in the wound area fully regenerated with blood vessels and hair follicles.

Producing Fertilizer From Air

The ability to manufacture fertilizers which supply fixed nitrogen to crops brought about the green revolution during my father's generation. Productivity attained previously unheard of levels. Producing those fertilizers is energy intensive and is responsible for 2% of the greenhouse gases going into today's atmosphere. This new method efficiently creates the raw material for fertilizer out of thin air. It's so efficient that it's conceivable that fertilizers may someday be produced on-site at any field on the planet without an electrical grid connection.

Wednesday, April 05, 2017

New Polymer for High-Temperature Ceramics

This is cool stuff. There are no exotic ingredients. It has the consistency and viscosity of water making it easy to pour into molds. It has a long shelf life as a liquid. It can be mass-produced. It can be sprayed on. It can be used as the fluid in a 3-D printer. It can withstand 10 times more heat than that in a rocket nozzle. It can be tuned from a insulator to a semiconductor. It is lightweight. It can be fabricated to absorb light from infrared to ultraviolet frequencies. Just awesome.

Friday, March 24, 2017

Inside the Hunt for Russia’s Most Notorious Hacker


From WIRED, an riveting article detailing the sleuthing of a Russian bank robber who turned his skills into tools of the Russian state to spy on all kinds of entities in the West. Eventually, this sophisticated network was taken down. But the perpetrator remains at large in Russia, protected by his government friends.

Only 3% of Trump voters regret their vote

A new poll shows only 3% of Trump voters are experiencing voter's remorse so far. This may change over time, but it makes clear that progressive candidates need to assiduously mine other sources for future wins.

Update: However, there are some who do.

Convert CO2 into carbon-neutral fuel source

This new molecule uses solar power to convert CO2 into carbon-monoxide. Carbon-monoxide can be converted into combustible fuel. When the fuel burns the same amount of CO2 is released as what went in to begin with. This makes the process carbon-neutral. So basically, you are using solar energy to power your car by burning ethanol.

Evading Heisenberg

The physics geek inside me applauds. You can’t evade Heisenberg but you can put the uncertainty in a place that doesn’t matter. In this case, ignore the spin angle vector that didn’t matter so you can measure the one that does with greater precision.