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Root of maths genius sought: Project 'Einstein' taps 400 top academics for their DNA

Root of maths genius sought: Project 'Einstein' taps 400 top academics for their DNA | Disruptive Innovation | Scoop.it

Jonathan Rothberg is on the hunt for the genes that code for mathematical prowess. He founded two genetic-sequencing companies and sold them for hundreds of millions of dollars. He helped to sequence the genomes of a Neanderthal man and James Watson, who co-discovered DNA’s double helix. Now, entrepreneur Jonathan Rothberg has set his sights on another milestone: finding the genes that underlie mathematical genius.

 

Rothberg and physicist Max Tegmark, who is based at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology in Cambridge, have enrolled about 400 mathematicians and theoretical physicists from top-ranked US universities in a study dubbed ‘Project Einstein’. They plan to sequence the participants’ genomes using the Ion Torrent machine that Rothberg developed.

 The team will be wading into a field fraught with controversy. Critics have assailed similar projects, such as one at the BGI (formerly the Beijing Genomics Institute) in Shenzhen, China, that is sequencing the genomes of 1,600 people identified as mathematically precocious children in the 1970s. The critics say that the sizes of these studies are too small to yield meaningful results for such complex traits. And some are concerned about ethical issues. If the projects find genetic markers for maths ability, these could be used as a basis for the selective abortion of fetuses or in choosing between embryos created through in vitrofertilization, says Curtis McMullen. A mathematician at Harvard University in Cambridge, Massachusetts, and a 1998 winner of the prestigious Fields Medal, McMullen was asked to participate in Project Einstein and declined.

 

Rothberg is pushing ahead. “I’m not at all concerned about the critics,” he says, adding that he does not think such rare genetic traits could be useful in selecting for smarter babies. Influenced by a college class he took from a pioneer in artificial intelligence, and by the diagnosis of his daughter with tuberous sclerosis complex, a disease that can cause mental retardation and autism, Rothberg has long been interested in cognition. He is also in awe of the abilities of famous scientists. “Einstein said ‘the most incomprehensible thing about the Universe is that it is comprehensible’,” he says. “I’d love to find the genes that make the Universe comprehensible.”


Via Dr. Stefan Gruenwald
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Google Glass: Coming soon to a Lowe’s near you?

Google Glass: Coming soon to a Lowe’s near you? | Disruptive Innovation | Scoop.it
Above: Sean Bartlett, left, director of digital experience for product and omni-channel integration at Lowe's, speaks at VentureBeat's Mobile Summit in Sausalito, Calif., on April 15.Image Credit: Michael O'Donnell/VentureBeatSAUSALITO, Calif.
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The Guardian launches small-run newspaper in U.S. — and it’s machine-curated

The Guardian launches small-run newspaper in U.S. — and it’s machine-curated | Disruptive Innovation | Scoop.it
Image Credit: The Newspaper ClubThe Guardian is bringing automated content-curation to U.S. newsstands using some tried and true technology: the print newspaper. The U.K.-based newspaper will launch a monthly print edition in the U.S.
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Real-Time 3D Images Coming to a Blood Vessel Near You

Real-Time 3D Images Coming to a Blood Vessel Near You | Disruptive Innovation | Scoop.it
Your doctor will now have access to detailed information about you –– at least of your blood vessels, arteries and heart that is Researchers from the Georgia Institute of Technology created a device that will allow doctors to capture real-time 3D...
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Network of 75 Million Neurons of the Mouse Brain Mapped for the First Time

Network of 75 Million Neurons of the Mouse Brain Mapped for the First Time | Disruptive Innovation | Scoop.it
With improved visualization tools and souped-up computers to crunch the massive numbers involved in studying the 100 billion neurons in the human
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Google buys Titan Aerospace to make more drones for Project Loon

Google buys Titan Aerospace to make more drones for Project Loon | Disruptive Innovation | Scoop.it
Image Credit: Flickr/The West StudioConnect with leaders from the companies in this story, in real life: Come to the fourth annual VentureBeat Mobile Summit April 14-15 in Sausalito, Calif. Request an invitation.
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Hacking the Political Platform: Why One Candidate Is Using Github

Hacking the Political Platform: Why One Candidate Is Using Github | Disruptive Innovation | Scoop.it
This Congressional hopeful believes the code-management service will give voters a voice.
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Why Goal Tracking Apps Are So Existentially Provocative

Why Goal Tracking Apps Are So Existentially Provocative | Disruptive Innovation | Scoop.it
Normally, if you asked me to free associate what comes to mind when I hear words like “productivity app” and “life hack,” you’d be treated an all out vent session—a combination of skepticism and cynicism directed at overly hyped products,...
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Delta Innovation Class

Delta Innovation Class | Disruptive Innovation | Scoop.it
This is Delta Innovation Class, a unique initiative where leaders and professionals in various fields share knowledge and skills with up-and-coming innovators and doers in a mentoring program that happens to take place at 35,000 feet.
Mark Polyak's insight:

Sounds like Delta took a "seat" from Amtrak's train..

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WeChat opens its image-recognition tech to the public

WeChat opens its image-recognition tech to the public | Disruptive Innovation | Scoop.it
Image Credit: ShutterstockSeveral months, ago WeChat launched a voice open platform for third parties to add capabilities such as speech recognition and speech-to-text conversion into their WeChat accounts.
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New technology unwraps mummies' ancient mysteries

New technology unwraps mummies' ancient mysteries | Disruptive Innovation | Scoop.it
New technology unwraps mummies' ancient mysteries Concord Monitor Volume graphics software, originally designed for car engineering, was then used to put flesh on the bones of the scans – showing skeletons, adding soft tissue, exploring the nooks...
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Tiny, Logical Robots Injected into Cockroaches - LiveScience.com

Tiny, Logical Robots Injected into Cockroaches - LiveScience.com | Disruptive Innovation | Scoop.it
Tiny, Logical Robots Injected into Cockroaches
LiveScience.com
Such tiny robots could do everything from target tumors to repair tissue damage. The experimenters used a technique called "DNA ...
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U.S. Navy's New Weapon Fires at 7 Times the Speed of Sound

U.S. Navy's New Weapon Fires at 7 Times the Speed of Sound | Disruptive Innovation | Scoop.it
The U.S. Navy's latest innovation comes in the form of a 23-pound projectile that can fly at seven times the speed of sound, and it will be ready for testing at sea by 2016.
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72% of Americans Refuse Google Glass Over Privacy Concerns: Report

72% of Americans Refuse Google Glass Over Privacy Concerns: Report | Disruptive Innovation | Scoop.it
The main reason why Americans won't wear Google Glass isn't its high price or the less-than-stellar reputation of some of its users — it's privacy.
Mark Polyak's insight:
Not sure about the figures, but understand concerns.
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Twitter Hires Google Maps Director to Serve as Product VP

Twitter Hires Google Maps Director to Serve as Product VP | Disruptive Innovation | Scoop.it
Can Google Maps help Twitter find its way to designing a more mainstream product? Twitter confirmed Tuesday that it has hired Daniel Graf to serve as its new VP of consumer product.
Mark Polyak's insight:
Are we about to see more geospatial friendly twitter?
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The Economist - Since Steve Jobs's untimely death in 2011,... | Facebook

Are Apple's great days behind it?
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Kenya to use biometrics to create unified national register | Planet Biometrics News

Kenya to use biometrics to create unified national register | Planet Biometrics News | Disruptive Innovation | Scoop.it
Article Details (Kenya to use biometrics to create unified national register:
http://t.co/kQ0CuT6SBh)
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3D Printed Tumor to Help Study Cancer Therapies

3D Printed Tumor to Help Study Cancer Therapies | Disruptive Innovation | Scoop.it
In order to study tumors, a research team of scientists in China and the US has developed a cervical cancer tumor model to be a tool to study and experiment with.
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Sarah Kreps and Micah Zenko | The Future of Drones | Foreign Affairs

Sarah Kreps and Micah Zenko | The Future of Drones | Foreign Affairs | Disruptive Innovation | Scoop.it
During World War II, a top commander in what was then the U.S. Army Air Forces, General Henry “Hap” Arnold, developed a new way to attack U-boat stations and other heavily fortified German positions: he turned old B-17 and B-24 bombers into remotely piloted aircraft and loaded them with explosives.
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The 10 Companies That Tried To Buy Facebook

The 10 Companies That Tried To Buy Facebook | Disruptive Innovation | Scoop.it
How many do you know about?
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Scientists Detect A Particle That Could Be A New Form Of Matter

Scientists Detect A Particle That Could Be A New Form Of Matter | Disruptive Innovation | Scoop.it
Physicists working at the Large Hadron Collider have spotted a long sought-after exotic particle that's the strongest evidence yet for a new form of matter called a tetraquark. Here's what the discovery could mean to astrophysics.
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Quantified Us — Medium

Quantified Us — Medium | Disruptive Innovation | Scoop.it
Nearly ten years ago Brooklyn-based designer Nicholas Felton created his first personal annual report.
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Does the world need a connected toothbrush? Kolibree launches a Kickstarter campaign to find out

Does the world need a connected toothbrush? Kolibree launches a Kickstarter campaign to find out | Disruptive Innovation | Scoop.it
Above: Kolibree's smart toothbrushImage Credit: Devindra Hardawar/VentureBeatThe Internet of Things is headed to your mouth.
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U.S. Navy's Robot Helicopter Delivers Military Supplies via Tablet

U.S. Navy's Robot Helicopter Delivers Military Supplies via Tablet | Disruptive Innovation | Scoop.it
The Office of Naval Research has unveiled what it believes to be the future of support for combat and military transport missions: a robot helicopter Using just a simple touchscreen tablet, any soldier can send the Autonomous Aerial Cargo/Utility...
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Nanodot-based smartphone battery that recharges in 30 seconds showcased

Nanodot-based smartphone battery that recharges in 30 seconds showcased | Disruptive Innovation | Scoop.it

Israeli startup StoreDot recently demonstrated the prototype of a nanodot-based smartphone battery it claims can fully charge in just under 30 seconds. With the company having plans for mass production, this technology could change the way we interact with portable electronics, and perhaps even help realize the dream of a fast-charging electric car.

 

 


Via Dr. Stefan Gruenwald
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Russ Roberts's curator insight, April 8, 3:57 PM

This may be a game changer in the field of battery technology.  If StoreDot can bring this development to market, it could change the way we use electronic devices from smartphones to electric cars.  StoreDot CEO Doron Myesdorf says "we have developed a new generation of electrodes with new materials...on one side, the battery acts like a supercapacitor (very fast charging) and the other side is like a lithium electrode (slow discharging).  Unlike many batteries in the marketplace today, StoreDot "nanodots" are inexpensive and "are made from a vast range of bio-organic raw materials that are environmentally friendly..."  According to Myersdorf, discharge rates for the new battery are similar to those possessed by lithium-ion cells.  Myersdorf adds that the company's first smart phone batteries will have a capacity of 2,000 mAhr.  This would make the cells a good fit for a wide range of amateur radio handheld transceivers.  I'm looking forward to seeing this product in the marketplace.  Aloha de Russ (KH6JRM).

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Paralyzed Men Move Their Legs Again With Breakthrough Spinal Treatment

Paralyzed Men Move Their Legs Again With Breakthrough Spinal Treatment | Disruptive Innovation | Scoop.it
Researchers at the University of Louisville had only intended to study nerve pathways, but they made a far more surprising discovery.
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