The $1 Million Race For The Cure To End Aging

aging, elderly hands clasped The hypothesis is so absurd it seems as though it popped right off the pages of a science-fiction novel. Some scientists in Palo Alto are offering a $1 million prize to anyone who can end aging. “Based on the rapid rate of biomedical breakthroughs, we believe the question is not if we can crack the aging code, but when will it happen,” says director of the Palo Alto Longevity… Read More

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Bellabox, Australia’s Largest Beauty Box Service, Raises $2.7M From Allure Media

Bellabox3 bellabox, Australia’s largest beauty subscription site, announced today that it has received $2.7 million in funding from Allure Media, a digital publishing company owned by Fairfax Media. The capital will be used to expand bellabox’s service offerings and improve its market research, as well hire more staff and expand the the startup to new international markets in the Asia Pacific. Read More

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Cool video: Ceramic head cuts one of the toughest metals in the world

Cool video: Ceramic head cuts one of the toughest metals in the world

That big block of metal is inconel, an extremely tough "austenitic nickel-chromium-based superalloy," one of the strongest metals known to humans, used in "in extreme environments subjected to pressure and heat" like nuclear plants. How do you cut such a hard thing? Let’s watch a video.

That’s a ceramic head rotating at very high speed. There are other ways—like water cutters—but only ceramic cutters can machine inconel at high speed.

When heated, Inconel forms a thick, stable, passivating oxide layer protecting the surface from further attack. Inconel retains strength over a wide temperature range, attractive for high temperature applications where aluminum and steel would succumb to creep as a result of thermally-induced crystal vacancies..


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Jury finds CBS infringes podcasting patent, awards $1.3 million

"Patent troll" lost its damages case, but it can move on to trials against NBC, Fox. http://ift.tt/eA8V8J

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Chrome for Android starts answering your questions in search suggestions

Chrome for Android shows the weather in auto-complete suggestions

Google’s as-you-type search suggestions have only offered the tiniest bit of help so far. They can handle basic math, but they won’t answer questions that require more than a few numbers. However, that might soon change. Chrome for Android now has an experimental feature that answers some of your queries before you’ve even finished asking. Switch it on and you can get the weather, historic dates and other valuable info without ever seeing Google’s usual results page. While the feature isn’t all that vital when you have access to Google Now, it may save you the trouble of switching apps (or leaving the page you’re on) when you just want to get a small factoid. There’s also no hint as to when Google might make the feature standard on Android or bring it to the desktop, but let’s hope that an upgrade comes soon — it could save a lot of unnecessary keystrokes.

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These Decoy Insects Zap the Nasty Bugs That Try to Mate With Them

These Decoy Insects Zap the Nasty Bugs That Try to Mate With Them

As they say, sex has consequences, even for male beetles. In their quest to eradicate an invasive beetle, scientists have created "femme fatale" decoys that lure the males in and zap ‘em dead—just as the unsuspecting males think they might be getting it on.

The fight against the emerald ash borer, an invasive beetle that has killed tens of millions of trees in the U.S., is in dire need of new strategies. Insecticides are nasty and potentially damaging to the tree. And so far, the emerald ash borer has show zero signs of slowing its destructive spread across the U.S.

A group of scientists based primarily at Pennsylvania State University had the idea to turn the beetle’s sex drive against itself. While chemical pheromones are sometimes used to trap insects, no one had ever created such a decoy female before. The researchers made two types, one using 3D printing and two more cast from molds of a real female beetle.

These Decoy Insects Zap the Nasty Bugs That Try to Mate With Them

Left to right: a molded decoy, an ash borer, a 3D-printed decoy, and an oak borer. Image courtesy of Michael Domingue.

Both types of female decoys attracted males flying around them, but male beetles were much more likely to land on the molded female decoys. When the researchers studied the decoys under a laser, they found that the molds had preserved the light-scattering properties of the beetle’s shell.

These Decoy Insects Zap the Nasty Bugs That Try to Mate With Them

Pattern of spicules and spines on emerald ash borer surface. Image courtesy of Justin George, USDA-Agricultural Research Service.

The males that landed didn’t stick around for long—they weren’t that easily fooled—but it was long enough to get electrocuted with a 4,000-volt zap. That’s enough energy to cause some pretty serious damage: "decapitation or distention of the head or reproductive structures," as the researchers write in their paper. Not the happy ending they probably hoped for. [PNAS]

Top image: Emerald ash borer on leaf. Image courtesy of Jonathan Lelito, BASF Corporation.

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These Decoy Insects Zap the Nasty Bugs That Try to Mate With Them

These Decoy Insects Zap the Nasty Bugs That Try to Mate With Them

As they say, sex has consequences, even for male beetles. In their quest to eradicate an invasive beetle, scientists have created "femme fatale" decoys that lure the males in and zap ‘em dead—just as the unsuspecting males think they might be getting it on.

The fight against the emerald ash borer, an invasive beetle that has killed tens of millions of trees in the U.S., is in dire need of new strategies. Insecticides are nasty and potentially damaging to the tree. And so far, the emerald ash borer has show zero signs of slowing its destructive spread across the U.S.

A group of scientists based primarily at Pennsylvania State University had the idea to turn the beetle’s sex drive against itself. While chemical pheromones are sometimes used to trap insects, no one had ever created such a decoy female before. The researchers made two types, one using 3D printing and two more cast from molds of a real female beetle.

These Decoy Insects Zap the Nasty Bugs That Try to Mate With Them

Left to right: a molded decoy, an ash borer, a 3D-printed decoy, and an oak borer. Image courtesy of Michael Domingue.

Both types of female decoys attracted males flying around them, but male beetles were much more likely to land on the molded female decoys. When the researchers studied the decoys under a laser, they found that the molds had preserved the light-scattering properties of the beetle’s shell.

These Decoy Insects Zap the Nasty Bugs That Try to Mate With Them

Pattern of spicules and spines on emerald ash borer surface. Image courtesy of Justin George, USDA-Agricultural Research Service.

The males that landed didn’t stick around for long—they weren’t that easily fooled—but it was long enough to get electrocuted with a 4,000-volt zap. That’s enough energy to cause some pretty serious damage: "decapitation or distention of the head or reproductive structures," as the researchers write in their paper. Not the happy ending they probably hoped for. [PNAS]

Top image: Emerald ash borer on leaf. Image courtesy of Jonathan Lelito, BASF Corporation.

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Sci-Fi Authors and Scientists Predict an Optimistic Future

An anonymous reader writes: A few years ago, author Neal Stephenson argued that sci-fi had forgotten how to inspire people to do great things. Indeed, much of recent science fiction has been pessimistic and skeptical, focusing on all the ways our inventions could go wrong, and how hostile the universe is to humankind. Now, a group of scientists, engineers, and authors (including Stephenson himself) is trying to change that. Arizona State University recently launched Project Hieroglyph, a hub for ideas that will influence science fiction to be more optimistic and accurate, and to focus on the great things humanity is capable of doing. For example, in the development of a short story, Stephenson wanted to know if it’s possible to build a tower that’s 20 kilometers tall. Keith Hjelmsad, an expert in structural stability and computational mechanics, wrote a detailed response about the challenge involved in building such a tower. Other authors are contributing questions as well, and researchers are chiming in with fascinating, science-based replies. Roboticist Srikanth Saripalli makes this interesting point: "If the government has to decide what to fund and what not to fund, they are going to get their ideas and decisions mostly from science fiction rather than what’s being published in technical papers."

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This Glimpse Into the Mind of a World Class Chef Will Leave You Drooling

No narration, no breakaway interviews, just a world-class chef developing and perfecting a brand new avant-garde menu in his private food laboratory. El Bulli: Cooking in Progress is more Paul Ehrlich than Paul Beard, but you’ll still find yourself drooling.

Throughout the film, the viewer is treated to an intimate look at the creative process of Chef Ferran Adria from the internationally-renowned Barcelona restaurant, El Bulli. Each year, the restaurant shuts down for six months, during which time Chef Adria and his team pore over a pantry-full of exotic ingredients to create an incredible and unique menu for the restaurant’s reopening.

"Going to eat in an avant-garde restaurant gives you something like a creative emotion," Chef Adria told a room full of young line chefs. "It’s not just about ‘mmm, it tastes good." You feel something. You think, ‘killer!’ regardless of whether it tastes better or worse."

"For us, the emotional element has always been more important," he continued. "But for that you sometimes need a certain technology."

You can see the gears turning as they inspect each new potential ingredient, evaluating its color, texture, intensity, balance and taste. At one point, they’re talking about cardamom and bergamot, and how those two aromas can be paired well with yuzu—an East Asian citrus fruit—because the herbs happen to smell slightly like muskrat when heated to a certain temperature, which apparently tastes fantastic with the yuzu fruit. WHO DOES THAT?! WHO HAS THE TIME?!?!

They constantly document their work with the rigorousness of seasoned lab researchers. Every preparation alternative, from frying to blanching to sweating, is recorded as they home in on a favored flavor. And the photos—so many photos. Because presentation is just as important as taste, the team is carefully to maintain a visual record of their various preparations should they, say, need a sweet potato of a certain shape and texture somewhere down the line.

But for the copious notes, the creative process requires an equal amount of pondering, naval gazing, and daydreaming to devise a menu of this caliber. You can see that in many of the dishes they showcase in the second half of the documentary. Many of them bear little resemblance to anything you’d find in the average American diet—a strange and seemingly delicious mix of mad science and age-old culinary mastery.

Most fascinating is the collaborative process between the chefs. To watch as they bounce ideas, suggestions, and critiques of one another’s cooking off of each other is entertaining, but witnessing them coordinate and cooperate over a period of half a year to create this incredible finished result—a meal served on silver platters—is truly amazing.

Of course, one look at the grueling process of cooking and serving the two hundred or so dishes they come up with during the off season—35 different dishes a night, with a menu that changes every week for the six month—it’s little wonder they only stay open for half the year. [Netflix, iTunes]

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The Fully Loaded Briefcase

The Fully Loaded Briefcase

Just because you use a briefcase for work doesn’t mean you have to keep boring old papers in it. Everyday Carry reader Derrick is a customer service rep for FEMA and the organization’s pedigree shows through in his choices for the contents of his bag.

The bag is a Ted Baker briefcase. Here’s what’s inside:

If you have a great go bag with a useful organization scheme and great features, let us know! You can share your bag by posting it to your personal Kinja blog using the tag featured bag or adding it to our Lifehacker Go Bag Show and Tell Flickr pool. Photos must be at least at least 640×360. Please include information about your bag, what you put in it, and any relevant details about how you made it awesome. If yours catches our eye, we might just feature it!

Ted Baker Briefcase… | Everyday Carry

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