Month: January 2019

Mean streets: Self-driving cars will ‘cruise’ to avoid paying to park

January 31, 2019

If you think traffic in city centers is bad now, just wait until self-driving cars emerge on the scene, cruising around to avoid paying hefty downtown parking fees. Read More

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Learning new vocabulary during deep sleep

January 31, 2019

Researchers showed that we can acquire the vocabulary of a new language during distinct phases of slow-wave sleep and that the sleep-learned vocabulary could be retrieved unconsciously following waking. Memory formation appeared to be mediated by the same brain structures that also mediate wake vocabulary learning. Read More

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CRISPR/Cas9 used to control genetic inheritance in mice

January 23, 2019

Using active genetics technology, biologists have developed the world’s first CRISPR/Cas9-based approach to control genetic inheritance in a mammal. The achievement in mice lays the groundwork for further advances based on this technology, including biomedical research on human disease. Future animal models may be possible of complex human genetic diseases, like arthritis and cancer, which […]

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More than ruffled feathers: Mockingbirds show heightened aggression after lead exposure

January 23, 2019

Mockingbirds exposed to sub-lethal levels of lead in urban areas display significantly heightened aggression, according to researchers. Their findings highlight the possibility that sub-lethal lead exposure may be common among other wildlife living in urban areas and more work is needed to better understand its full effects. Read More

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Do endangered woods make better guitars?

January 22, 2019

Researchers have tested the sounds made by six different acoustic guitars in a study addressing the effects of the type of wood used in their construction. Some of the woods used for guitar backs are revered by guitar players for their acoustic qualities, and are claimed to be tonally superior to other woods. Unfortunately many […]

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‘Ambidextrous’ robots could dramatically speed e-commerce

January 16, 2019

Engineers present a novel, ‘ambidextrous’ approach to grasping a diverse range of object shapes without training. Read More

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Illuminating women’s role in the creation of medieval manuscripts

January 9, 2019

Researchers have revealed direct evidence of medieval women’s involvement in the production of illuminated manuscripts. Lapis lazuli in the dental calculus of a woman buried at a 12th-century German monastery suggests that she created richly illustrated religious texts. Read More

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Myth of Mona Lisa’s magical gaze debunked

January 8, 2019

The ‘Mona Lisa Effect’ refers to the impression that the eyes of the person portrayed in an image seem to follow the viewer as they move in front of the picture. Researchers now demonstrate that this effect does not occur with Leonardo da Vinci’s world-famous painting ‘Mona Lisa’. Read More

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