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Activision Shows Animated Human That Looks So Real, It's Uncanny

Activision Shows Animated Human That Looks So Real, It's Uncanny | Biosciencia News | Scoop.it

Activision showed off the state of the art of real-time graphics on Wednesday, releasing this mind-boggling character demo. The character's skin, facial expressions and eyes look so real, it's uncanny.

 

When you watch this video, see if you think this character has reached the other side of what's commonly called the "uncanny valley," a term first uttered by early robotics guruMasahiro Mori in 1970. It describes the range of sophistication of animated graphics, from one side of the valley where human figures simply look unrealistic, to the middle of the valley — where they look just realistic enough to be creepy — to our side of the valley, where animation is indistinguishable from reality.

 

Whenever the uncanny valley is mentioned, the animation techniques from the November, 2004 movie Polar Express come to mind. Most viewers noticed the characters weren't quite photorealistic enough to keep them out of the creepy zone. But that was nearly 8 years ago, and graphics technology has made spectacular progress since then.


Via Marco Bertolini, Dr. Stefan Gruenwald, Sakis Koukouvis
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Marco Bertolini's curator insight, March 28, 2013 4:59 PM

Une vidéo bluffante : ce monsieur est en réalité une animation réalisée par la société Activision.  Une reconstitution incroyable des expressions faciales, de la texture de la peau, etc.

CAEXI BEST's curator insight, May 9, 2013 1:14 AM
Activision Montre homme animé qui semble si réel, c'est Uncanny
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In first head-to-head speed test with conventional computing, quantum computer wins

In first head-to-head speed test with conventional computing, quantum computer wins | Biosciencia News | Scoop.it
(Phys.org) —A computer science professor at Amherst College who recently devised and conducted experiments to test the speed of a quantum computing system against conventional computing methods will soon be presenting a paper with her verdict: quantum...
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Your Brain Calls in Backup to Find Lost Things

Your Brain Calls in Backup to Find Lost Things | Biosciencia News | Scoop.it

When you lose something important—a child, your wallet, the keys—your brain kicks into overdrive to find the missing object. But that’s not just a matter of extra concentration. Researchers have found that in these intense search situations your brain actually rallies extra visual processing troops (and even some other non-visual parts of the brain) to get the job done.


Via Sakis Koukouvis, Dr. Stefan Gruenwald
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First live observations of a rare deep-sea anglerfish

First live observations of a rare deep-sea anglerfish | Biosciencia News | Scoop.it

C. coloratus was first described from a single specimen collected off the coast of Panama during an expedition in 1891 aboard the U.S. Fish Commission steamer Albatross. However, for over 100 years, marine researchers collected deep-sea fish using trawl nets and dredges, so this anglerfish was never seen alive. That changed in 2002, when researchers from MBARI, Moss Landing Marine Laboratories, and the Monterey Bay National Marine Sanctuary used the remotely operated vehicle (ROV) Tiburon to explore Davidson Seamount—an extinct volcano off the coast of Central California.

 

Video: http://www.youtube.com/watch?feature=player_embedded&v=Cl_MbvSUvTk

 

When the researchers first spotted this fish on video from the ROV, they weren’t exactly sure what kind of fish it was. Although C. coloratus had been dredged from deep-sea environments in other ocean basins, it had never been seen in the north Pacific. After the cruise, the researchers recruited ichthyologists from California Academy of Sciences and elsewhere to help them identify the fish.

 

Then, in 2010, MBARI researchers observed six more of these unique fish during ROV dives at Taney Seamounts, another set of extinct volcanoes off the California coast. This time, the research team noticed that not all of the fish were red or rose-colored, as they had previously been described in the scientific literature. Instead, some of the fish were blue.

After comparing the sizes of the fish in ROV videos, the scientists noted that the red fish were larger and more mature, while the blue fish were younger and smaller. From these observations, they inferred that this fish likely begins its life in a transparent larval form, turns blue as a juvenile, and turns red at adulthood.

 

One of the remarkable traits of all anglerfish is their ability to attract prey using parts of their bodies that function as lures. During one ROV dive, the researchers observed C. coloratusdeploying a shaggy, mop-like lure, called an esca, which it dangled from the end of a modified fin near the top of its head. After an unsuccessful attempt at attracting prey, the anglerfish then stowed its fishing gear away in a special cavity located between its eyes.

 

In addition to witnessing the anglerfish using its ”fishing lure” Lundsten and his colleagues also watched C. coloratus move across the seafloor in a manner akin to walking. This behavior is common among C. coloratus’ shallow-water relatives, the frogfish, but had not been observed in C. coloratus. Scientists speculate that 'walking' is more energy efficient than swimming short distances, and that it also disturbs the surrounding seawater less, reducing the chances of startling nearby prey.

 

As a result of MBARI's ROV observations, researchers also learned that C. coloratus can live as deep as 3,300 meters (11,000 feet) below the ocean’s surface. Previous trawl-net collections suggested that the fish lived only at depths of 1,250 to 1,789 meters (4,100 to 5,900 feet).


Via Dr. Stefan Gruenwald
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TODD MCLELLAN MOTION/STILLS INC - • Things Come Apart

TODD MCLELLAN MOTION/STILLS INC - • Things Come Apart | Biosciencia News | Scoop.it

Things Come Apart is an expansion of the original Disassembly Series. This new set of images explores retro to modern daily items that have, are, or will be in our everyday lives. The book "Things Come Apart" published by Thames & Hudson will be available May. 

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Portable nanodevice provides rapid, accurate diagnosis of tuberculosis, other bacterial infections

Portable nanodevice provides rapid, accurate diagnosis of tuberculosis, other bacterial infections | Biosciencia News | Scoop.it
A handheld diagnostic device that Massachusetts General Hospital (MGH) investigators first developed to diagnose cancer has been adapted to rapidly diagnose tuberculosis (TB) and other important infectious bacteria.
Biosciencia's insight:

On this 2.5- by 7.5-cm cartridge, DNA extracted from sputum samples is amplified in the chambers on the left. TB-specific sequences are magnetically labeled in the microfluidic mixing channels in the center and detected by passage through the micro-NMR coil on the right.

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Epilepsy Cured in Mice Using A One-Time Transplantation Of MGE Brain Cells

Epilepsy Cured in Mice Using A One-Time Transplantation Of MGE Brain Cells | Biosciencia News | Scoop.it

UCSF scientists controlled seizures in epileptic mice with a one-time transplantation of medial ganglionic eminence (MGE) cells, which inhibit signaling in overactive nerve circuits, into the hippocampus, a brain region associated with seizures, as well as with learning and memory. Other researchers had previously used different cell types in rodent cell transplantation experiments and failed to stop seizures.

 

Cell therapy has become an active focus of epilepsy research, in part because current medications, even when effective, only control symptoms and not underlying causes of the disease, according to Scott C. Baraban, PhD, who holds the William K. Bowes Jr. Endowed Chair in Neuroscience Research at UCSF and led the new study. In many types of epilepsy, he said, current drugs have no therapeutic value at all.

 

"Our results are an encouraging step toward using inhibitory neurons for cell transplantation in adults with severe forms of epilepsy," Baraban said. "This procedure offers the possibility of controlling seizures and rescuing cognitive deficits in these patients."

 

In the UCSF study, the transplanted inhibitory cells quenched this synchronous, nerve-signaling firestorm, eliminating seizures in half of the treated mice and dramatically reducing the number of spontaneous seizures in the rest. Robert Hunt, PhD, a postdoctoral fellow in the Baraban lab, guided many of the key experiments.

 

he mouse model of disease that Baraban's lab team worked with is meant to resemble a severe and typically drug-resistant form of human epilepsy called mesial temporal lobe epilepsy, in which seizures are thought to arise in the hippocampus. In contrast to transplants into the hippocampus, transplants into the amygdala, a brain region involved in memory and emotion, failed to halt seizure activity in this same mouse model, the researcher found.

 

Temporal lobe epilepsy often develops in adolescence, in some cases long after a seizure episode triggered during early childhood by a high fever. A similar condition in mice can be induced with a chemical exposure, and in addition to seizures, this mouse model shares other pathological features with the human condition, such as loss of cells in the hippocampus, behavioral alterations and impaired problem solving.

 


Via Dr. Stefan Gruenwald
Biosciencia's insight:

Cell therapy has become an active focus of epilepsy research, in part because current medications, even when effective, only control symptoms and not underlying causes of the disease.

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Brenda Elliott's curator insight, May 8, 2013 7:00 AM

curative_ that's amazing...

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Scientists create hybrid flu that can go airborne

Scientists create hybrid flu that can go airborne | Biosciencia News | Scoop.it
H5N1 virus with genes from H1N1 can spread through the air between mammals.
Nature News doi: 10.1038/nature.2013.12925
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Researchers have crossed two strains of avian flu virus to create one that can be transmitted through the air.

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Robotic fly takes off at Harvard - The Guardian

Robotic fly takes off at Harvard - The Guardian | Biosciencia News | Scoop.it
The Guardian
Robotic fly takes off at Harvard
The Guardian
Link to video: RoboBee: tiny robotic 'insect' flight demonstration. The smallest flying robot in the world has completed its maiden flight in a US laboratory.
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The smallest flying robot in the world has completed its maiden flight in a US laboratory.

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11.9 Million-Year-Old Fossil of Pierolapithecus Analyzed by Researchers

11.9 Million-Year-Old Fossil of Pierolapithecus Analyzed by Researchers | Biosciencia News | Scoop.it
A new study led by Dr Salvador Moya-Sola from the Universitat Autònoma de Barcelona, Spain, is the first to examine the pelvis fragments of an early hominid called Pierolapithecus catalaunicus.
Biosciencia's insight:

Following an in-depth examination of Pierolapithecus, experts say the shape of the specimen’s pelvis indicates that it lived near the beginning of the great ape evolution, after the lesser apes had started to develop separately but before the great ape species began to diversify...

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Injectable nano-network controls blood sugar in diabetics for days at a time

Injectable nano-network controls blood sugar in diabetics for days at a time | Biosciencia News | Scoop.it
(Phys.org) —In a promising development for diabetes treatment, researchers have developed a network of nanoscale particles that can be injected into the body and release insulin when blood-sugar levels rise, maintaining normal blood sugar levels...
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The nano-network releases insulin in response to changes in blood sugar.

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Biologist discovers new meat-eating dinosaur from the late Jurassic period in China

Biologist discovers new meat-eating dinosaur from the late Jurassic period in China | Biosciencia News | Scoop.it
(Phys.org) —Fossil remains found by a George Washington University biologist in northwestern China have been identified as a new species of small theropod, or meat-eating, dinosaur.
Biosciencia's insight:

This shows fossil remains found by a George Washington University biologist in northwestern China have been identified as a new species of small theropod, or meat-eating, dinosaur.

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Eritoran: New Drug for Influenza Shows Promise in Mice Study

Eritoran: New Drug for Influenza Shows Promise in Mice Study | Biosciencia News | Scoop.it
A multinational team of researchers led by Prof Stefanie Vogel from the University of Maryland has found that an experimental drug called Eritoran can protect mice from death after they have been infected with a lethal dose of the mouse-adapted...
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Eritoran has shown promise in treating influenza, preventing lung injury and death from the virus in preclinical studies.

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Weather forecasts on Mars

Weather forecasts on Mars | Biosciencia News | Scoop.it
(Phys.org) —In the north of the red planet snowfalls occur with great regularity. Expeditions of Mars rovers into this region could therefore be easily planned.
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In winter a layer of frozen carbon dioxide covers the Martian North Pole. Approximately 50 percent of this ice cap falls to the ground as snow.

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Spitzer telescope puts planets in a petri dish

Spitzer telescope puts planets in a petri dish | Biosciencia News | Scoop.it
(Phys.org) —Our galaxy is teeming with a wild variety of planets. In addition to our solar system's eight near-and-dear planets, there are more than 800 so-called exoplanets known to circle stars beyond our sun.
Biosciencia's insight:

If astronomers could somehow pull planets out of the sky and analyze them in the laboratory, it might look something like this artistically altered image illustrating new research from NASA's Spitzer Space Telescope. The infrared observatory allows astronomers to study closely the atmospheres of hot Jupiter planets -- those outside our solar system that orbit near the blistering heat of their stars.

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Muscles in old mice made young again

Muscles in old mice made young again | Biosciencia News | Scoop.it

Researchers have identified for the first time a key factor responsible for declining muscle repair during aging, and discovered that a common drug halts the process in mice.

 

A dormant reservoir of stem cells is present inside every muscle, ready to be activated by exercise and injury to repair any damage. When needed, these cells divide into hundreds of new muscle fibers that repair the muscle. At the end of the repairing process some of the cells also replenish the pool of dormant stem cells so that the muscle retains the ability to repair itself again and again.

The researchers carried out a study on old mice and found the number of dormant stem cells present in the pool reduces with age, which could explain the decline in the muscle’s ability to repair and regenerate as it gets older.

When these old muscles were screened the team found high levels of FGF2, a protein that has the ability to stimulate cells to divide. While encouraging stem cells to divide and repair muscle is a normal and crucial process, they found that FGF2 could also awaken the dormant pool of stem cells even when they were not needed. The continued activation of dormant stem cells meant the pool was depleted over time, so when the muscle really needed stem cells to repair itself the muscle was unable to respond properly.

 

Researchers then attempted to inhibit FGF2 in old muscles to prevent the stem cell pool from being kick-started into action unnecessarily. By administering a common FGF2 inhibitor drug they were able to inhibit the decline in the number of muscle stem cells in the mice.

 

“Preventing or reversing muscle wasting in old age in humans is still a way off, but this study has for the first time revealed a process which could be responsible for age-related muscle wasting, which is extremely exciting,” says Albert Basson, Senior Lecturer from the department of craniofacial development and stem cell biology at the King’s College London Dental Institute.

 

“The finding opens up the possibility that one day we could develop treatments to make old muscles young again. If we could do this, we may be able to enable people to live more mobile, independent lives as they age.”


Via Dr. Stefan Gruenwald
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Injectable Oxygen Keeps People Alive Without Breathing - PSFK

Injectable Oxygen Keeps People Alive Without Breathing - PSFK | Biosciencia News | Scoop.it
Scientists have made a breakthrough could save patient's lives and open up the possibilities for underwater exploration.
Biosciencia's insight:

A team at Boston Children’s Hospital have invented a micro-particle that can be injected into your bloodstream to oxygenate your blood – without any help being required from your lungs.

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Divide and define: Clues to understanding how stem cells produce different kinds of cells

Divide and define: Clues to understanding how stem cells produce different kinds of cells | Biosciencia News | Scoop.it
The human body contains trillions of cells, all derived from a single cell, or zygote, made by the fusion of an egg and a sperm.
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New cost-effective genome assembly process developed

New cost-effective genome assembly process developed | Biosciencia News | Scoop.it
The U.S. Department of Energy Joint Genome Institute (DOE JGI) is among the world leaders in sequencing the genomes of microbes, focusing on their potential applications in the fields of bioenergy and environment.
Biosciencia's insight:

DOE JGI researchers are part of a team that has developed what is described as "a fully automated process from DNA sample preparation to the determination of the finished genome."

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Dream of Mars exploration achievable, experts say

Dream of Mars exploration achievable, experts say | Biosciencia News | Scoop.it
NASA and private sector experts now agree that a man or woman could be sent on a mission to Mars over the next 20 years, despite huge challenges.
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NASA and private sector experts now agree that a man or woman could be sent on a mission to Mars over the next 20 years, despite huge challenges.

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New mechanism discovered in meiosis

New mechanism discovered in meiosis | Biosciencia News | Scoop.it
Inactivated, but still active– how modification of an enzyme governs critical processes in sexual reproduction.
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A protein structure (synaptonemal complex) forms between the homologous chromosomes in the presence of the step-2 enzyme modified with SUMO.

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New experiments set to detect gravitational waves

New experiments set to detect gravitational waves | Biosciencia News | Scoop.it
(Phys.org) —Over the next five years, Mansi Kasliwal writes in an astrophysics perspective in the journal Science, researchers will begin setting up experiments designed to detect gravitational waves.
Biosciencia's insight:

Gravitational waves were predicted by Einstein's general theory of relativity. They are distortions in the fabric of space-time and are believed to occur in measurable amounts when massive objects such as neutron stars merge.

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Meteorite Found in Antarctica May Help Reveal Secrets of Life on Mars

Meteorite Found in Antarctica May Help Reveal Secrets of Life on Mars | Biosciencia News | Scoop.it
Geologists led by Dr Lydia Hallis from the University of Hawaii have examined a meteorite that formed on Mars more than 1 billion years ago to determine if conditions were ever right on the planet to sustain life.
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Solar plane takes off on cross-country US trip

Solar plane takes off on cross-country US trip | Biosciencia News | Scoop.it
The first-ever manned airplane that can fly by day or night on the Sun's power alone took off Friday on the first leg of a trip across the United States.
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The Solar Impulse piloted by Bertrand Piccard takes off from Rabat airport on July 6, 2012. The solar airplane has taken off from California on its first attempt at a cross-country trip across the United States.

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Climate changes could bring malaria to the UK - The Guardian

Climate changes could bring malaria to the UK - The Guardian | Biosciencia News | Scoop.it
The Guardian Climate changes could bring malaria to the UK The Guardian Leading health experts are urging the government to take action against the growing threat that mosquito-borne diseases, including potentially fatal malaria, could soon arrive...
Biosciencia's insight:

A warmer, wetter climate will provide the perfect breeding ground for pests such as malaria-carrying mosquitoes.

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