Category: Science
1980′s Classic ‘Ghostbusters’ Hitting Theaters Again for 30th Anniversary

ghostbusters-30th-anniversaryIf you were a child of the 80′s, you enjoyed some great flicks that include the likes of Weird Science, Masters of the Universe, Ghostbusters and Ghostbusters 2. If you are old enough to remember these films, you have no doubt seen them – But did you see them in the theater? If you were to young in the 80′s you might not have seen these movies in the theater. Thanks to Sony Pictures, you can bring back a piece of your childhood in a new and awesome way – The 1980′s Classic, Ghostbusters, is hitting the theaters again in August 2014 for its 30th anniversary, now is your time to see it again in all its glory. Can you imagine seeing the glorious StatePuff Marshmallow Man on the big screen! The movie is said to be released in over 700 theater nationwide  According to Entertainment Weekly. To further celebrate Ghostbusters, Sony Pictures is releasing a 30th anniversary edition of Ghostbusters and a 25th anniversary edition of Ghostbusters 2, marking the first time Ghostbusters 2 has ever been released on Blu-Ray. The new Blu-Ray edition will feature deleted scenes that haven’t been seen before. Both movies will also include newly recorded conversations with Dan Aykroyd and director Ivan Reitman. Grab your proton pack and prepare yourself, it’s going to be an awesomely thrilling ride! – And remember, never cross the streams…

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Google’s New Futuristic Self Driving Car

If you are a child of the 80′s and you are an extreme techie geek like we are, you undoubtedly remember the fantastically fabulous self driving T-top transam named KITT from the hit series Knight Rider – KITT could not only talk but he could drive himself and jump over other cars if they got in his way. Back in the 80′s KITT was light years ahead of his time, he was the most advanced car on the planet. Fast forward to today and we do finally have cars that can drive themselves, although we are a far cry from one car jumping over another. Yes, you might have guessed, we are talking about the Google self driving car or more specifically the NEW Google self driving car. As yet, it is unnamed, but on Tuesday night, onstage at the Code Conference in California, Sergey Brin revealed what could be a glimpse into our very near future – A self driving car with no steering wheel and no gas pedal, this bad boy consists of 2 seats, a seatbelt, a big screen in the center console and a big red start button. According to test drivers, the screen tells you the weather along with how long until you reach your destination. Of course one can see where this is going, email on the dash, maybe catch up on some candy crush, the sky’s the limit with a big screen in the car. Currently the car tops out at 25MPH and is entirely electrically driven. It even has two motors onboard so that if one should fail, the other can seamlessly take over. Watch as some luck folks get to take this new automotive wonder for a spin:


The tech inside this baby is nothing short of amazing and the software that governing the functioning of the car are even more mind boggling. If you are interested in getting some insight on how the Google car does what it does, watch this interesting walkthrough by one of Google’s test drivers:
One thing is for sure and that is that the self driving car is here to stay, it’s only a matter of time until your car drives you to work while read your email and help the kids with their homework – It’s coming, will you be ready?

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Google’s Project Loon Gets One Step Closer to Reality by Partnering with Wireless Carriers

If you are any kind of geek at all, you will no doubt have heard of Google’s X division. Google X focuses on coming up with big futuristic ideas to tackle big real word problems and making them a reality.  Two of the most well known Google X projects are the self driving car, which is already real and in active testing and project Loon, which is mostly just a pipe dream or is it? Project Loon is the deployment of wireless network repeaters attached to balloons high in the sky in order to provide internet access to remote rural parts of the world. This is obviously a highly ambitious goal and faces many challenges, the biggest of which is staying connected to the internet at usable speeds. The hardware solution is largely complete and was successful in testing, so the last hurdle facing the team at Google X, was getting the balloon’s wireless hardware on the web so it could make the web available to all the people in range of any of the balloons. Originally the team’s plan was to buy Google’s own section of the wireless spectrum to essentially broadcast the web to it’s balloon network around the globe. To the team’s surprise, after 6 months of negotiating for spectrum space, the team presented the grand plan to Google’s CEO Larry Page and he was less than impressed:

“You’re going to hit a double. That’s not interesting,” Page told the team. “You’re going to be really frustrated. You’ll be angry at me for a week. But then you’re going to get creative. You’ll come up with a home run.”

And a home run is exactly what the team has achieved. The Google X team is bringing project Loon one step close to reality by partnering with wireless carriers to lease existing spectrum and bring the balloons online. The idea is that they can use what is already working through telcos who are already in place. Additionally, Google thinks this will be a great idea that will foster natural adoption of the new balloon tech from countries all around the globe, mainly because it will be the country’s own telco that will deploy the balloons for use – a far different scenario than Google barging into rural countries and forcing their tech on the people of that country. Sometime sooner rather than later, people stuck in the middle of the deserts of the world will be able to get online and join the information superhighway. Google we love you forever!

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NASA’s New Space Suit Looks Like Something Right Out of a Scifi Film

nasa-z2-space-suit

NASA recently held a contest and asked the public to choose the new look of the next official space suit to be used by NASA and after a couple hundred thousand votes and three base designs to choose from, the people have spoken. Finally, the new space suit, the Z-2, looks like something right out of a sci-fi film as we would expect. In fact it very closely resembles the suit of the ever so hilarious dwarf servant and friend of Doctor Who, the friend who is always eager to go into a raging battle and blow things up. The new suit will sport very flexible and movable shoulder and hip joints for better articulation of movement for the astronauts, while still being strong enough to protect them from harsh and unforgiving planetary environments like that of mars. As if that wasn’t enough, the suit gets even cooler…it is sure to dazzle many a space traveller as it will include luminescent wiring, both at the front and back of the suit – Rest assured, Doctor Who and other space travellers will see us coming in the dark black void of space :-) Below are a few highlights about the suit for the suit designers – The Z-2 was voted Time magazine’s invention of the year in 2012 -

  • First surface-specific planetary mobility suit to be tested in full vacuum
  • First use of 3D human laser scans and 3D-printed hardware for suit development and sizing
  • Most advanced use of impact resistant composite structures on a suit upper and lower torso system
  • First integration of the suit-port concept with a hard upper torso suit structure
  • Most conformal and re-sizeable hard upper torso suit built to date
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Artificial Blood Cells Are Here

blood-cellsPick your favorite vampire flick and there’s always some quirky mad scientist trying to create synthetic blood as a substitute for the vamps having to go on a mass carnage and feed on live human blood. Well maybe now humans and vampires can hang out together at cocktail parties because artificial blood cells are finally here, thanks to the Scottish National Blood Transfusion Service who is leading the project.

We have made red blood cells that are fit to go in a person’s body,” said Marc Turner, medical director at the Scottish National Blood Transfusion Service, who is leading the £5m ($8.5m) project funded by the Wellcome Trust.

The artificial blood cells called erythrocetes, are created by harvesting stem cells from an adult human’s blood or skin and genetically reverting them into induced pluripotent stem (iPS) cells. These iPS cells have the potential to turn into any one of the body’s 200 tissues. The cells are cultivated in a chemical bath similar to that of bone marrow and then a centrifuge is used to separate the blood cells from the rest of the cells, this technique usually yields about 50% blood cells. The bloods cells have many many benefits, they would be clean and free of infection like hepatitus and HIV that previously has put transfusion patients at risk, and they can be type O-negative blood which is compatible with any human. The blood would primarily be used to save lives in surgical trauma cases.

“Although similar research has been conducted elsewhere, this is the first time anybody has manufactured blood to the appropriate quality and safety standards for transfusion into a human being,” said Professor Turner.

The new blood is scheduled for clinical trials in 2016, when it will likely be given to three patients with thalassaemia, a genetic disorder in which the body makes less haemoglobin – the protein that carries oxygen – than usual, thus requiring treatment by frequent transfusions.

Clinical trials in humans are scheduled for 2016 and the team still faces obstacles, like how to mass produce the blood cells so that they can be used in real world cases. This is a huge breakthrough to be sure and we will keep our eyes on it. It’s about time some mad scientists came up with something amazing and groundbreaking…You go Professor Turner!

Source: Forbes

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