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Even as our phones get thinner, there's one spot that keeps sticking out: the camera lens. Taking good pictures and being able to focus at multiple distances requires a layer of glass that's a certain size, but there's really no getting around it -- or is there? Researchers at Caltech have devised (PDF) an "optical phased array" chip that uses math as a substitute for a lens. By adding a time delay -- down to a quadrillionth of a second -- to the light received at different locations on the chip, it can change focus without a lens.

Caltech's 'lensless camera' could make our phones truly flat

Think you have your head wrapped around flexible displays? Wait till you see through this. LG Display is the purveyor of OLED, our favorite TV technology, and the Korean manufacturer has a crazy new concept display. Billed as the world's first 77-inch transparent and flexible OLED display, it can look like water flowing over a shelf. But it's a TV. It's 77-inches diagonal, but can be rolled up to a radius of just 80mm. That's a diameter of just over 6 inches, a bit smaller than a volleyball. It's transparent. LG claims 40% transparency and judging from the image below, that's basically a window. But with moving images.

Huge transparent, flexible OLED display flows like water - CNET

The key emerging non-volatile technologies like phase-change memory (PCM), magnetoresistive random access memory (MRAM) and resistive random access memory (RRAM) have long development histories. Yet, their adoption remains restricted to niche markets due to various factors. Available products have limited density, and the introduction of high density products by emerging NVM pioneers has been delayed. There are manufacturing challenges due to the introduction of new materials and process steps. Meanwhile, mainstream memory technologies are continuously improving in terms of density and cost. Finally, there has been an absence of a killer application that would challenge dynamic random access memory (DRAM) and NAND flash memory. However, favorable factors are now emerging that that will propel the emerging NVM business onto a rapid growth trajectory, observes market research firm Yole Développement.

Time is ripe for emerging non-volatile memory, says Yole | eeNews Europe


The product called DrinkPure is the brainchild of a team of scientists from the Swiss Federal Institute of Technology, ETH Zurich, who have developed a high-tech membrane that filters water and removes pathogens, the bacteria, viruses and other microorganisms that can cause disease. Unlike other filters that can reduce the levels of certain contaminants, the membrane can filter out plastic and other damaging particles and neutralize unpleasant odors, such as chlorine from water.

Swiss startup says high-tech water filter can remove bacteria, viruses and plastic - MarketWatch

The University of Washington (Seattle, WA) in the US is licensing its ‘zero power’ wireless technology to a startup called Jeeva Wireless for commercialization in 2018. The researchers at UW have demonstrated devices transmitting data across distances of up to 2.8 km using RF energy harvested from Wi-Fi networks and other reflected radio sources. The long-range backscatter system achieved reliable coverage throughout 4800-square-foot house, an office area covering 41 rooms and a one-acre vegetable farm using a dedicated radio source.

Zero-power wireless communication tech looks to commercialize in 2018 | Smart2.0

Researchers at Columbia University have created an artificial active tissue that, when 3D printed to imitate a muscle, can withstand great strain and lift 1,000 times its own weight. The breakthrough could lead to a future where strong humanoid robots become commonplace, but scientists must first configure these muscles to be controlled through AI.

Artificial muscle can lift 1,000x its own weight and may lead to future with super buff robots


The last time you had your blood pressure checked, it was probably at a doctor’s office with a bulky cuff wrapped around your arm. One day soon, perhaps, you will just need a simple stick-on patch on your neck, no bigger than a postage stamp. That’s the goal of Sheng Xu and his team at the University of California, San Diego, who are working on a patch that can continuously measure someone’s central blood pressure—the pressure of blood coursing beyond your aorta, the artery in your heart that delivers blood to all the different parts of the body. It could make it a lot easier to monitor heart conditions and keep an eye on other vital organs like the liver, lungs, and brain.

A stretchy stick-on patch can take blood pressure readings from deep inside your body - MIT Technology Review


Quote:Mojo Vision, a California startup dedicated to the development of pervasive, yet unobtrusive augmented reality solutions which it calls “Invisible Computing”, has unveiled a tiny MicroLED display, only 0.48mm in diameter, boasting a record 14K PPI pixel density. Smaller than a grain of rice, the prototype display delivers a pixel density 300 times greater than current smartphone displays and draws about a tenth of the power required by today’s LCD displays while being 5 to 10 times brighter than OLEDs for viewing outdoors.
14,000ppi MicroLED display is world’s densest, only 0.48mm across

Quote:Together with industrial partners, a Berlin-based Fraunhofer Institute is developing a combined camera-radar module that reacts 160 times faster than humans. The aim is to make autonomous driving safer.
Radar sensor module slashes response time for autonomous carsAMERESCO, INC. - 13288288.pdf

Quote:So far the disease, which is thought to affect over 400 million people worldwide, is understood to be incurable. But researchers at the Washington University School of Medicine in St Louis have just proved that it is possible to cure diabetes in mice in just a couple of weeks.  IFL Science’s Alfredo Carpineti reports that the researchers used human cells to keep the disease at bay for at least nine months and up to more than a year in some mice. The findings were published in Nature Biotechnology.  The mice were given severe diabetes using a substance known as streptozotocin, but human cells implanted in the animals were able to control their blood sugar levels, curing the disease.
Diabetes: Scientists use human cells to cure disease in mice | indy100

Quote:If you've spent any time near a lake or other body of water, you may've seen a fellow traveler bent over the dirty H2O with a large straw, drinking away. Chances are they're using a LifeStraw, a high-tech water filtration device developed by humanitarian company VestergaardThe LifeStraw uses technology to filter out water contaminants such as parasites, bacteria, viruses and lead, to make dirty water drinkable. Other than being a handy tool to have on a camping trip, the straw has gained worldwide attention as a result of Vestergaard's work with former US President Jimmy Carter's foundation, the Carter Center. The center's Guinea Worm Eradication Program takes aim at a parasitic infection caused when someone drinks water that contains water fleas infected with Guinea worm larvae..
How the LifeStraw is eradicating an ancient disease - CNET

Quote:The natural world has proven a generous source of drugs for the human race, and the latest scientific discovery in this area takes this concept right back to its roots. After giving the world aspirin more than a century ago, the bark of the willow tree has again been tapped for its life-saving potential, this time offering up a novel chemical that has proven capable of killing various cancer cells in the lab. The use of willow leaves and bark for the purposes of pain relief stretches back thousands of years, with ancient Egyptians stripping the trees to ease their aching joints. In 1897, a synthetic version of the active ingredient, salicylic acid, was produced and later marketed under the name aspirin, which went on to become one of the most commonly used drugs around the world. Scientists from the UK’s Rothamsted Research and cancer biologists from the University of Kent have now discovered another chemical in willow trees with plenty of potential. Called miyabeacin, the researchers are particularly excited about how it might prove useful in treating cancers resistant to existing drugs.
Newly discovered chemical in willow trees kills various cancer cells

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