MIT's transparent display system could provide heads-up data

Transparent displays have a variety of potential applications — such as the ability to see navigation or dashboard information while looking through the windshield of a car or plane, or to project video onto a window or a pair of eyeglasses. A number of technologies have been developed for such displays, but all have limitations.

2013 marked sustained long-term climate warming trend

NASA scientists say 2013 tied with 2009 and 2006 for the seventh warmest year since 1880, continuing a long-term trend of rising global temperatures. With the exception of 1998, the 10 warmest years in the 134-year record all have occurred since 2000, with 2010 and 2005 ranking as the warmest years on record.

Report: Arctic warmth unprecedented in 44,000 years

When the temperature rises on Baffin Island, in the Canadian high Arctic, ancient Polytrichum mosses, trapped beneath the ice for thousands of years, are exposed. Using radiocarbon dating, new research in Geophysical Research Letters has calculated the age of relic moss samples that have been exposed by modern Arctic warming.

Understanding the origin of life on earth

JoVE, the Journal of Visualized Experiments, publishes a modern approach to a famed experiment that explored one of the most intriguing research questions facing scientists today—the origin of life on earth.  

Peeking into Schrodinger's box

Until recently, measuring a 27-dimensional quantum state would have been a time-consuming, multistage process using a technique called quantum tomography, which is similar to creating a 3D image from many 2D ones.

Tiny swimming bio-bots boldly go where no bot has swum before

The alien world of aquatic micro-organisms just got new residents: synthetic self-propelled swimming bio-bots.

Get used to heat waves: Extreme El Nino events to double

Extreme weather events fuelled by unusually strong El Ninos, such as the 1983 heatwave that led to the Ash Wednesday bushfires in Australia, are likely to double in number as our planet warms.

Distant quasar illuminates a filament of the cosmic web

Astronomers have discovered a distant quasar illuminating a vast nebula of diffuse gas, revealing for the first time part of the network of filaments thought to connect galaxies in a cosmic web. Researchers at the University of California, Santa Cruz, led the study, published January 19 in Nature.

How to tap the sun’s energy through heat as well as light

A new approach to harvesting solar energy, developed by MIT researchers, could improve efficiency by using sunlight to heat a high-temperature material whose infrared radiation would then be collected by a conventional photovoltaic cell. This technique could also make it easier to store the energy for later use, the researchers say.

Natural 3D counterpart to graphene discovered

The discovery of what is essentially a 3D version of graphene – the 2D sheets of carbon through which electrons race at many times the speed at which they move through silicon – promises exciting new things to come for the high-tech industry, including much faster transistors and far more compact hard drives.

Claim: Internet surveillance predicts disease outbreak

The habit of Googling for an online diagnosis before visiting a GP can provide early warning of an infectious disease epidemic.

Study: Brain identifies images seen for as little as 13 milliseconds

Imagine seeing a dozen pictures flash by in a fraction of a second. You might think it would be impossible to identify any images you see for such a short time. However, a team of neuroscientists from MIT has found that the human brain can process entire images that the eye sees for as little as 13 milliseconds — the first evidence of such rapid processing speed.

BYU's smart object recognition algorithm doesn't need humans

If we’ve learned anything from post-apocalyptic movies it’s that computers eventually become self-aware and try to eliminate humans.

Two-proton bit controlled by a single copper atom

Just a single foreign atom located in the vicinity of a molecule can change spatial arrangement of its atoms. In a spectacular experiment, an international team of researchers was able to change persistently positions of the nuclei of hydrogen atoms in a porphycene molecule by approaching a single copper atom to the molecule.

NASA: Cracked sea ice stirs up Arctic mercury concern

Vigorous mixing in the air above large cracks in Arctic sea ice that expose seawater to cold polar air pumps atmospheric mercury down to the surface, finds a NASA field campaign. This process can lead to more of the toxic pollutant entering the food chain, where it can negatively affect the health of fish and animals who eat them, including humans.

Soil microbes alter DNA in response to warming

As scientists forecast the impacts of climate change, one missing piece of the puzzle is what will happen to the carbon in the soil and the microbes that control the fate of this carbon as the planet warms.

Quantum physics could make secure, single-use computer memories possible

Computer security systems may one day get a boost from quantum physics, as a result of recent research from the National Institute of Standards and Technology (NIST). Computer scientist Yi-Kai Liu has devised away to make a security device that has proved notoriously difficult to build—a "one-shot" memory unit, whose contents can be read only a single time.

Why you shouldn't fear the dawn of the drones

In the not too distant future, you may hear the hum of a drone's rotors as it descends upon you and be filled with a sense of relief, not panic. After all, it's coming to save you, not harm you.

Key species of algae shows effects of climate change over time

A study of marine life in the temperate coastal waters of the northeast Pacific Ocean shows a reversal of competitive dominance among species of algae, suggesting that increased ocean acidification caused by global climate change is altering biodiversity.

Researchers reveal phrases that pay on Kickstarter

Researchers at Georgia Tech studying the burgeoning phenomenon of crowdfunding have learned that the language used in online fundraising hold surprisingly predictive power about the success of such campaigns.