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Author: Scott Simonsen

Robotics | IoT

Demystifying GMOs: New Research Shows Unexpected Changes in Plant DNA

Genetically modified organisms (GMOs) are one of the most contentious topics in science today. But a study from the Salk Institute, published last month in PLOS Genetics, may help clear up some of the confusion. Using a combination of techniques known as nanopore sequencing and optical mapping, researchers believe they have a clearer picture of […]

Will These Massive Geoengineering Projects Fix the Earth—Or Break It?

From planting continent-long forests to inducing rainfall, researchers have begun proposing, testing, and in some cases implementing large-scale geoengineering projects to radically transform the planet. These projects are designed to solve problems such as desertification, drought, or excess carbon dioxide in the atmosphere, all with the ultimate goal of combating climate change. A recent report […]

Advancing Vehicle-to-Grid Tech: Why Solar Energy Needs Your Electric Car

Solar may be the future of energy production, but for the time being, it causes a lot of problems.  Energy producers, grid managers, and energy markets have struggled to adapt to the growing amount of solar panels being installed, especially in areas like California. In short, the problems stem from two simple facts: first, that […]

Quantum Communication Just Took a Great Leap Forward

Researchers in the field of quantum communication have recently made great strides, taking us closer to a perfectly secure method of communication. For years, researchers struggled to find ways to amplify quantum signals, store large amounts of quantum data, and allow for more than two nodes in a quantum network. However, in the last two […]

How Swarm Intelligence Is Making Simple Tech Much Smarter

As a group, simple creatures following simple rules can display a surprising amount of complexity, efficiency, and even creativity. Known as swarm intelligence, this trait is found throughout nature, but researchers have recently begun using it to transform various fields such as robotics, data mining, medicine, and blockchains. Ants, for example, can only perform a […]

How Graphene Research Is Taking Aim at 5 of the World’s Biggest Problems

In September 2015, world leaders gathered at a historic UN summit to adopt the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs). These are 17 ambitious targets and indicators that help guide and coordinate governments and international organizations to alleviate global problems. For example, SDG 3 is to “ensure healthy lives and promote well-being for all at all ages.” […]

There Are Over 1,000 Alternatives to Bitcoin You’ve Never Heard Of

Bitcoin gets all the attention, especially since it recently rocketed towards $20,000. But many other cryptocurrencies exist, and more are being created at an accelerating rate. A quick look at coinmarketcap.com shows over 1,400 alternatives to Bitcoin (as of this writing), with a combined value climbing towards $1 trillion. So if Bitcoin is so amazing, […]

The Massive Project to Clean Up the Ocean With a Two-Kilometer Screen

Every year, eight million metric tons of plastic enter the ocean, threatening just about every marine species and ecosystem. As the global population grows and countries develop, this is only going to increase, eventually threatening us as well—if it isn’t already. The Great Pacific Garbage Patch swirls between Hawaii and California, made up of microparticles […]

To Achieve 100% Renewable Energy, We Need Way Better Batteries

When it comes to grid storage our batteries are terrible. A grid powered entirely from solar and wind wouldn’t work with the current state of energy storage, as solar and wind don’t produce consistently, and they can’t be tweaked to meet demand. That is, solar energy can only be produced during cloudless days and wind […]

5 Reasons the UN Is Jumping on the Blockchain Bandwagon

By the time they woke on May 31st, 2017, 10,000 Syrian refugees stationed at Azraq camp in Jordan had received their long-awaited aid. But instead of the typical white and blue trucks from the United Nations’ World Food Program (WFP), the aid came in the form of electronic vouchers distributed on the back of a […]