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A remote-controlled roving camera camouflaged as a penguin chick in Adelie Land, Antarctica. The device is so convincing that penguins don't scamper away and sometimes even sing to it with trumpet-like sounds. Emperor penguins are notoriously shy. When re

Roving Robotic Spy Keeps Tabs on Shy Penguins

November 4, 2014 12:42 pm | by Seth Borenstein, AP Science Writer | News | Comments

The newest tool for biologists is the baby penguin robotic spy. It's pretty darn cute, and so convincing that penguins essentially talk to it, as if it is a potential mate for their chicks. Emperor penguins are notoriously shy. When researchers approach, these penguins normally back away and their heart rate goes up. That's not what the scientists need when they want to check heart rate, health and other penguin parameters.

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Traditionally, a person might enter a password or pull out a driver's license or passport as proof of identity. But increasingly, identification and authentication can also require an eye scan or a well-placed hand. It's a science known as biometrics, rec

Cybersecurity: Computer Scientist Sees New Possibilities for Ocular Biometrics

November 4, 2014 12:37 pm | by Miles O'Brien, NSF | News | Comments

Researhers are developing a three-layered, multi-biometric approach that tracks the movement of the eye globe and its muscles, and monitors how and where a person's brain focuses visual attention, in addition to scanning patterns in the iris. The system essentially upgrades the security of existing iris recognition technology with nothing more than a software upgrade.

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Specular Spectacular: Sun Glint Captured in Majestic NASA Photo – Courtesy of NASA/JPL-Caltech/University of Arizona/University of Idaho

Specular Spectacular: Sun Glint Captured in Majestic NASA Photo

November 4, 2014 12:03 pm | by NASA | News | Comments

This near-infrared, color mosaic from NASA's Cassini spacecraft shows the sun glinting off of Titan's north polar seas. While Cassini has captured, separately, views of the polar seas and the sun glinting off of them in the past, this is the first time both have been seen together in the same view. The sunglint, also called a specular reflection, is the bright area near the 11 o'clock position at upper left.

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Fabiola Gianotti, pictured here at the ATLAS detector, will be CERN's next Director-General. Her five-year mandate will begin on January 1, 2016.  Courtesy of Claudia Marcelloni/CERN

CERN Council Names First Female Director-General

November 4, 2014 11:51 am | by CERN | News | Comments

At its 173rd Closed Session on November 4, 2014, the CERN Council selected Italian physicist, Dr. Fabiola Gianotti, as the Organization’s next Director-General. The appointment will be formalized at the December session of Council, and Gianotti’s mandate will begin on January 1, 2016, and run for a period of five years. The Council rapidly converged in favor of Gianotti.

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R.D. McDowall is Principal, McDowall Consulting.

The Cloud Meets GMP Regulations – Part 3: Options for Auditing a Cloud Service Provider

November 3, 2014 2:53 pm | by R D McDowall | Articles | Comments

The purpose of this series is to discuss the impact of GMP (Good Manufacturing Practice) regulations on cloud computing and to debate some of the regulatory issues facing an organization contemplating this approach. In this part, we look at the options for auditing a cloud service provider.

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GeneSpring Pathway Architect Software

GeneSpring Pathway Architect Software

November 3, 2014 11:44 am | Agilent Technologies | Product Releases | Comments

GeneSpring Pathway Architect software is designed to enable faster discovery of complex relationships across multi-omic data. Designed for researchers focused on genomics, proteomics, metabolomics, transcriptomics or any combination of life science disciplines, the package includes GeneSpring GX and Mass Profiler Professional, as well as Pathway Architect.

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Products and services based on TIBCO's Fast Data platform are designed to enable businesses worldwide to turn big data into a differentiator.

TIBCO Announces New Ease-of-Use Enhancements to Fast Data Capabilities

November 3, 2014 11:37 am | by TIBCO Software | News | Comments

TIBCO Software has announced improvements to the company's Fast Data capabilities, enabling IT and business users to leverage today’s rapidly changing business environment. Products and services based on TIBCO's Fast Data platform are designed to enable businesses worldwide to turn big data into a differentiator.

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Fruit Fly Sperm -- Courtesy of Nikon Small World

Fruit Fly Sperm

November 3, 2014 11:20 am | News | Comments

This 630X photo shows fruit fly (Drosophila) sperm. It received an Image of Distinction designation in the 2013 Nikon Small World Photomicrophotography Competition, which recognizes excellence in photography with the optical microscope, and was taken using confocal microscopy.

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Become an Eyelander vision training game: Researchers from the University of Lincoln, UK, and Wesc Foundation have developed a new computer game which could hold the key to helping visually-impaired children lead independent lives. It is now in clinical t

Computational Neuroscientist Develops Computer Game to Aid Visually Impaired

November 3, 2014 11:14 am | by University of Lincoln | News | Comments

Researchers will begin testing a new computer game that they hope could hold the key to helping visually impaired children lead independent lives. Developed by a team of neuroscientists and video game designers, the Eyelander game features exploding volcanoes, a travelling avatar and animated landscapes.

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Can Private Space Industry Survive 2 Explosions in 4 Days?

November 3, 2014 10:48 am | by Seth Borenstein, AP Science Writer | News | Comments

Fiery failures are no stranger to the space game. It's what happens when you push the boundaries of what technology can do, where people can go. And it happened again to Virgin Galactic's SpaceShipTwo. In the past decade, the space industry has tried to go from risky and government-run to routine private enterprise — so routine that if you have lots of money you can buy a ticket on a private spaceship and become a space tourist.

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The effectiveness of current laser-propulsion techniques is limited by the instability of supersonic gas flow, caused by shock waves that “choke” the inlet of the nozzle, reducing thrust. Those effects can be reduced with the help of laser ablation, redir

Supersonic Laser-propelled Rockets may Enable Aircraft to Exceed Mach 10

October 31, 2014 2:21 pm | by The Optical Society | News | Comments

Scientists and science fiction writers alike have dreamed of aircrafts that are propelled by beams of light rather than conventional fuels. Now, a new method for improving the thrust generated by such laser-propulsion systems may bring them one step closer to practical use. A new system integrates a laser-ablation propulsion system with the gas blasting nozzles of a spacecraft. 

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A new system lets programmers identify sections of their code that can tolerate a little error. The system then determines which program instructions to assign to unreliable hardware components, to maximize energy savings while still meeting the programme

Harnessing Error-prone Chips Trades Computational Accuracy for Energy Savings

October 31, 2014 2:09 pm | by Larry Hardesty, MIT | News | Comments

As transistors get smaller, they also grow less reliable. Increasing their operating voltage can help, but that means a corresponding increase in power consumption. With information technology consuming a steadily growing fraction of the world’s energy supplies, some researchers and hardware manufacturers are exploring the possibility of simply letting chips botch the occasional computation.

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Jaspersoft 5.6 Open Source Release

TIBCO Jaspersoft 5.6 Open Source Release

October 31, 2014 11:29 am | Tibco | Product Releases | Comments

The TIBCO Jaspersoftbusiness intelligence platform includes native big data connectors with support for Apache Hadoop, Apache Hive, Apache Cassandra and Cloudera, helping to deliver real-time reporting. Additional interactive reporting features provide a customizable experience for users.

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Starry Sky from the Space Station -- Courtesy of NASA

Starry Sky from the Space Station

October 31, 2014 11:13 am | News | Comments

An Expedition 41 crew member aboard the Earth-orbiting International Space Station on September 13, 2014, captured this image of a starry sky. The white panel at left belonging to the ATV-5 spacecraft, which is docked with the orbital outpost, obstructs the view of Scorpius.

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3rd Place Winner: Jumping Spider Eyes; Reflected Light; 20X. Noah Fram-Schwartz, Greenwich, Connecticut, USA.

Seeing the World in a New Perspective

October 31, 2014 10:10 am | by Suzanne Tracy, Editor-in-Chief, Scientific Computing and HPC Source | Blogs | Comments

Floating 40 floors above street level, at the New York Academy of Sciences, winners and judges recently gathered to celebrate the 40th annual Nikon Small World Photomicrography Competition — a forum to recognize proficiency and photographic excellence of photography taken under the microscope. The competition, which is open to anyone with an interest in microscopy and photography, is international in scope.

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