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Filtered by author: Doug Vining
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Zapping on an extra year
Posted: 17 January 2017  
The newly discovered protein that regulates how we age at a cellular level is called TZAP. This could be the primary controlling factor in how long our cells can replicate and survive aging. Which only goes to show, that every year we learn something new to help realise the scenario of this MindBullet.
Scientists discover master regulator of cellular aging
17 January 2017
Scientists at the Scripps Research Institute report the discovery of TZAP, a protein that binds the ends of chromosomes and determines how long telomeres ...
Every year your life increases by another year
Dateline: 1 January 2033
If you're young enough, you may never die. Seriously. Think about it: If average lifespan keeps increasing, every year, then as long as you are younger ...
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Predictions for the coming decade
Posted: 16 January 2017  
Eric Schmidt shares his predictions for the future in this concise and well-articulated video.
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The voice will rule
Posted: 11 January 2017  
Last year we published this MindBullet, suggesting that computing as we've come to know it was about to be transformed by voice technology, combined with AI and mobile of course. Now the Economist agrees, in this article.
How voice technology is transforming computing
11 January 2017
Like casting a magic spell, it lets people control the world through words alone
Voice is the new mobile computer interface
Dateline: 21 September 2019
The company that brought us the world's first true smart phone has done it again. A dozen years after the launch of the iPhone, Apple has completely ...
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A swarm of micro drones
Posted: 10 January 2017  
One of our MindBullets from almost eight years ago suggested that the US military would weaponise real cyborg insects and attack human soldiers with swarms of steerable locusts, or similar bugs. The other option would be to build robotic locusts that could smother their target. Well, here's a story of a successful test of micro drones operating in a swarm and launched from fighter aircraft. ...
Pentagon successfully tests micro-drone swarm
10 January 2017
The Pentagon may soon be unleashing a 21st-century version of locusts on its adversaries after officials on Monday said it had successfully tested a swarm ...
Cyborg locusts open new frontier
Dateline: 28 April 2014
The first 'cyborg-war' has just been won after millions of wirelessly-controlled locusts swamped the North Korean army as it massed on the border with ...
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Honda's self-balancing motorbike follows you like a puppy
Posted: 9 January 2017  
Honda has demonstrated a motorcycle with the ability to self-balance, and even self-drive at slow speeds.

The bike appears to be a modified NC750S – a twin-cylinder midrange naked bike that uses Honda's clutchless automatic dual-clutch transmission. "This Riding Assist does not use large gyroscopes, which would add a lot of weight and limit the bike's ability to maneuver," says Honda's global ...
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Beyond the Internet of Things
Posted: 6 January 2017  
The revitalised Nokia company (see Neil's post below) has a vision for the future that goes beyond the mechanistic internet of things. It's called the Programmable World:

"In the programmable world, tens of billions of mobile sensors feed data into interoperable cloud platforms, which perform intelligent analysis and translate the learnings into actions that are fed back to the real world via actuators, such as valves, engines, locks, autonomous machines, and devices of all sorts. As the real world becomes programmable and connectivity expands ...
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Making malaria extinct
Posted: 1 January 2017  
We published a MindBullet that explores the unintended consequences of a gene drive that has the potential to make an entire species different - or even extinct. Now researchers are working on developing a genetically modified mosquito to eradicate malaria. And the work is advancing rapidly, with help from the Gates Foundation.
Bill Gates sees CRISPR gene drive eradicating mosquitoes in Africa by 2029
1 January 2017
A genetic technology that can kill off mosquito species could eradicate malaria. But is it too risky to ever use?
Scientists say no other theory seems to hold
Dateline: 15 October 2026
After watching Border Security Australia, passengers always got off the plane feeling an extra bit anxious and jittery. Thoughts like 'What if they say the ...
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Replacing human workers with AI tech
Posted: 1 January 2017  
"While concrete examples of AI systems making human workers redundant are currently rare, observers have pointed out that such cases are likely to increase.

The insurance firm will introduce an AI system based on IBM Japan Ltd.'s Watson, which according to IBM is a "cognitive technology that can think like a human," and "can analyze and interpret all of your data, including unstructured text, ...
Insurance firm to replace human workers with AI system - The Mainichi
1 January 2017
Fukoku Mutual Life Insurance Co. is planning to slash nearly 30 percent of its payment assessment department's human staff after it introduces an ...
Millions of jobs have gone to the machines – and now at the top end too!
Dateline: 26 September 2020
It was way back in 2012 that we predicted that by 2022, your boss would be a machine. We were wrong. It's happened this year, 2020, a full two years ...
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Robotic grocery store
Posted: 30 December 2016  
Faster than Amazon, this online grocery store is run by robots and machine learning. This is real innovation in the area of operational efficiency!
The robotic grocery store of the future is here
30 December 2016
Swarm robotics, autonomous delivery vehicles, and machine-learned preferences will help deliver your food faster.
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China the come-back kid
Posted: 29 December 2016  
Over the years, we have published many MindBullets on China's rise, and possible fall. We don't predict the future, merely highlight various scenarios. In China's case, it can go both ways; China could reign supreme, despite its many challenges, or it could succumb to a number of drivers, like commodity bubbles, property bubbles, worker discontent, inflation, population ageing, global ...
The world’s top economy: the US vs China in five charts
29 December 2016
For more than a century, the United States has been the world’s top economy. These charts show how this is changing.
China beats the odds and the analysts and doubles its economy in a decade
Dateline: 8 August 2025
China has proven all its detractors wrong - again. Despite predictions of economic collapse by global doomsayers, China has doubled its GDP in ten years, ...
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Small business robot
Posted: 12 December 2016  
Chinese startup Dobot has unveiled their first multi-use robotic arm designed for small businesses. With swappable tool heads and extension kits, the robot can accomplish a variety of tasks, including 3D printing.
Dobot lends a robotic hand to small businesses
12 December 2016
Running a small business is hard enough without trying to compete with a factory full of robotic arms. Now a startup has unveiled the Dobot M1, a consumer-level programmable robotic arm with swappable tool heads and kits for soldering, sorting, engraving, cutting, 3D printing and manufacturing.
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Electronic brain power
Posted: 8 December 2016  
Would you like to hook a computer up to your brain, so that you could be a lot smarter? Bryan Johnson, the founder of a new company called Kernel, is aiming for that. He calls it HI - Human Intelligence, the merger of humans and AI.
The Brain Tech to Merge Humans and AI Is Already Being Developed
8 December 2016
Are you scared of artificial intelligence (AI)? Do you believe the warnings from folks like Prof. Stephen Hawking, Elon Musk and others? Is AI the greatest ...
That wunderkind has got a chip in her head
Dateline: 12 June 2029
We used to think of AI as artificial intelligence, but that's an old concept. Now we use it to mean augmented intelligence; natural human intelligence ...
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Amazon Go video
Posted: 6 December 2016  
Watch how cool it is to shop at Amazon Go.
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No checkout required at Amazon Go
Posted: 6 December 2016  
Amazon's grocery store in Seattle is so convenient, you just take the goods and walk out. It's automatically scanned and charged to your account!
Amazon wants you to feel like you’re shoplifting from its new grocery store
6 December 2016
You can simply scan your phone, pick your food up off the shelf, and walk out.
MindBullet logo AMAZON OPENS 100th CITY STORE
Amazon eStore Hong Kong joins the high street line-up
Dateline: 22 October 2013
Amazon opened its one-hundredth city store yesterday, with queues of eager shoppers waiting to snatch up the opening specials on offer. And no, it's not ...
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Can't stop viral power
Posted: 6 December 2016  
Earlier this year, we published a MindBullet about micro generation and consumption of solar power, particularly in under developed areas like Africa. Now people who have abundant sunshine are leapfrogging the industrial-age model of a centralised power utility, straight into the future of basic electric power at almost zero cost!

Not even Trump can reverse this trend. ...
Off the grid solar is increasingly solving power problems in parts of rural Africa
6 December 2016
Pay-as-you-go solar systems have begun to light up homes in underserved parts of the continent, but will need to pack more punch to leapfrog the grid.
Rooftop, backyard and portable solar is the new meme
Dateline: 15 March 2022
The biggest energy revolution in 150 years has arrived gradually, then suddenly. Now it's here. Personal solar power has displaced central utilities ...
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Machines that spot criminals before the crime
Posted: 24 November 2016  
Can a computer identify a criminal just by looking at their face, without comparing it to a database? Apparently yes:

"The worry, of course, is how humans might use these machines. It’s not hard to imagine how this process could be applied to data sets of, say, passport or driving license photos for an entire country. It would then be possible to pick out those people identified as ...
A deep-learning machine was trained to spot criminals by looking at mugshots
24 November 2016
The effort aimed at identifying criminals from their mugshots raises serious ethical issues about how we should use artificial intelligence.
Using online behaviour and social activity, government looks to catch terrorists and criminals in advance
Dateline: 1 April 2019
Reports from the Dark Web are filtering through: China has activated its 'predictive policing' platform known as the Peoples' Public Security Evaluation or ...
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The world in 2076
Posted: 16 November 2016  
Long term predictions and forecasts are risky - they are bound to be wrong. New Scientist takes a look at some scenarios for 60 years' time.
We've seen the future, and it will blow your mind
16 November 2016

New Scientist is 60 years old this week, and what better way to celebrate a landmark birthday than to wax lyrical about another time. But we’re not going ...

The future will always surprise us
Dateline: 11 August 2026
Back in the 1950s, seventy years ago, people made all sorts of predictions about what the future would be like. We'd have flying cars and robot maids, it ...
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3D printing aviation engines
Posted: 16 November 2016  
3D printing has come a long way since the certification of a single printed part for aircraft was big news. General Electric Aviation has gone considerably further in the development of its Advanced Turboprop (ATP) for the Cessna Denali single-engine aircraft.

When completed, the 1,240 bhp ATP itself will have 855 conventional components reduced to just 12 printed parts, which include the ...
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Understanding artificial intelligence
Posted: 15 November 2016  
I think it's fair to say that most of us are fascinated by artificial intelligence, but we don't understand it. The idea of smart machines, that don't only understand natural language, but think like humans (if that's possible) conjures up all sorts of scenarios for the future. But even developers of advanced algorithms and deep neural networks can't explain exactly how they work, or rather ...
Understanding the four types of AI, from reactive robots to self-aware beings
15 November 2016
We need to do more than teach machines to learn. We need to overcome the barriers that separate machines from us – and us from them.
Sensors and gadgets clamour to be heard
Dateline: 13 May 2024
After all these years, we're still stuck with basic artificial intelligence. AI has not matured to the 'general' level, where machines are as smart as ...
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Taxing food and water, and air
Posted: 8 November 2016  
A few years ago, we published a MindBullet which suggested that the climate control freaks, I mean bureaucrats, would eventually tax us for the very air we breathe. While that was a bit tongue-in-cheek, the idea is not so far fetched. Water is already taxed in the form of VAT on your council bill, and bottled water is taxed three times over, which is probably a good thing.

Now comes an idea to ...
Food Tax Could Tackle Climate Change and Save Half a Million Lives: Study - NDTV Food
8 November 2016
Taxing food on the basis of planet-warming emissions generated to produce it could boost the fight against climate change and save half a million lives, a ...
European agency for air quality seeks to introduce oxygen tax
Dateline: 28 April 2023
The EU Climate Control Agency (CCA), known colloquially as the 'carbon police', has introduced proposals to tax the very air we breathe. Two decades of ...
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