Roland’s Sunday Smart Trends #169
July 1st, 2007

Making Manimals

We’ve been transplanting baboon hearts, pig valves and other animal parts into people for decades. We’ve derived stem cells by inserting human genomes into rabbit eggs. We’ve created mice that have human prostate glands. We’ve made sheep that have half-human livers. Last week, Britain’s Academy of Medical Sciences reported that scientists have created “thousands of examples of transgenic animals” carrying human DNA. According to the report, “the introduction of human gene sequences into mouse cells in vitro is a technique now practiced in virtually every biomedical research institution across the world.”
[Another version of this article appeared on Slate on June 22, 2007, “The recombination of man and beast“.]
Source: William Saletan, Slate, for the Washington Post, June 24, 2007 (Free registration)

Plaxo turns address books into Web social networks

In a major comeback push by the 6-year-old company, which Silicon Valley insiders see as a forerunner of the social-network craze, Plaxo has created the first Web service to share data between major address and calendar programs. With Plaxo 3.0, as the new service is known, consumers can synchronize address books and calendar data locked up inside Microsoft Outlook, Google and Yahoo services, Apple Macintosh computers, Mozilla Thunderbird e-mail and many mobile phones.
Source: Eric Auchard, Reuters, June 25, 2007

It’s photographer’s choice on Corbis site

Recognizing the growing market for inexpensive online photographs, Corbis, the online stock photo company founded and owned by Bill Gates, plans Monday to introduce a Web site that allows anyone to upload photographs for sale. Called SnapVillage, the site is the latest entrant into the realm of so-called microstock agencies.
Source: Katie Hafner, The New York Times, June 24, 2007

Artificial Societies and Virtual Violence

How modeling societies in silico can help us understand human inequality, revolution, and genocide.
Source: Mark Williams, Technology Review, July/August 2007

First European nanotechnology project to go live on YouTube

If you have ever wondered how a real science project operates and wanted to see what it is like working in a research lab, then the nano2hybrids project should fulfil your curiosity-driven appetite. As its main form of outreach, the researchers will unravel the progress of their research on a daily and monthly basis by posting video diaries of their trials and tribulations on their website and on the popular video-sharing website, YouTube.
Source: CORDIS News, June 26, 2007

Undifferentiated networks would require significant extra capacity

A new study by researchers at Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute, AT&T Labs, and the University of Nevada, Reno suggests that an Internet where all traffic is treated identically would require significantly more capacity than one in which differentiated services are offered.
Source: Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute, June 29, 2007

Fingerprints take leap into future

Police could use fingerprints to detect if suspects have handled explosives or cocaine in a process being developed by a Sedgefield nanotechnology company, Roar Particles.
Source: The Sunday Times, July 1, 2007

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