Harvard team creates a biohybrid being using 3-D printing, tissue engineering, and muscular circuitry.


If you met this lab-created critter over your beach vacation, you’d swear you saw a baby ray. In fact, the tiny, flexible swimmer is the product of a team of diverse scientists. They have built the most successful artificial animal yet. This disruptive technology opens the door much wider for lifelike robots and artificial intelligence.




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It was already 28 years ago that the Hubble Space Telescope was launched and deployed in low-Earth orbit, where it remains today. Outfitted with a 2.4 meter mirror, a slew of instruments designed for viewing stars, planets, nebulae and galaxies, Hubble became humanity’s first civilization-class space telescope. Although it had a number of science goals, its most ambitious was what gave rise to its name: it was the Hubble telescope because it was built to measure the Hubble expansion rate of the Universe. But what Hubble wound up teaching us went far beyond anything it was designed for, and that was due to a combination of three factors. First, Hubble was overbuilt for its mission. Second, Hubble was repaired, upgraded, and serviced. And third, the people administering Hubble had the foresight to green-light some very bold, ambitious proposals. This review article summarizes what we have learned.

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Over 150 experts in AI, robotics, commerce, law, and ethics from 14 countries have signed an open letter denouncing the European Parliament’s proposal to grant personhood status to intelligent machines. The EU says the measure will make it easier to figure out who’s liable when robots screw up or go rogue, but critics say it’s too early to consider robots as persons—and that the law will let manufacturers off the liability hook.


This all started last year when the European Parliament proposed the creation of a specific legal status for robots: The parliament said the law would apply to “smart robots,” which it defined as robots having the capacity to learn through experience and interaction, the ability to acquire autonomy through its sensors, the capacity to adapt its behavior and actions to the environment, among other criteria. By virtue of this proposal, the EU is responding to rapid advances in robotics and AI, and the potential risks imposed on humans and human property. The fear isn’t a robot uprising (at least not yet), but more mundane risks, such as autonomous vehicles and drones accidentally smashing into people, a factory robot crushing an absent-minded worker, or a Roomba giving your cat an unexpected shave.


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Contrary to what its name might suggest, digital transformation is primarily a problem of culture and leadership, a “human” phenomenon. It implies working in a transdisciplinary way, collaborating beyond the usual borders and above all – like in any organizational transformation process – creating trust: trust between engineers and humanists, between government departments, between citizens and government, etc. And since there are no miracles, trust is built over time and experience and it can only come from listening, honesty, competence, and transparency.


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It is commonly understood that the dinosaurs disappeared with a bang – wiped out by a great meteorite impact on the Earth 66 million years ago.


But their origins have been less understood. In a new study, scientists from MUSE – Museum of Science, Trento, Italy, Universities of Ferrara and Padova, Italy and the University of Bristol show that the key expansion of dinosaurs was also triggered by a crisis – a mass extinction that happened 232 million years ago.



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Elon Musk’s rocket company, SpaceX, is likely raising about $500 million in new funding. The cash investment would be a boon to SpaceX, which is chasing three incredibly ambitious projects in the coming decade. Those plans include (i) a global satellite-internet network, (ii) a spaceship to explore and colonize Mars, and (iii) the world’s fastest transportation system.




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