Posts Tagged:Science

March for Science: Live Updates from Washington DC and Around the US

WIRED Science writers across the United States follow the March for Science from Washington DC, Boston, and San Francisco. The post March for Science: Live Updates from Washington DC and Around the US appeared first on WIRED.

Apple is headed for a clash with President Trump on some crucial issues

If President-elect Donald Trump stays true to his word, Apple should hope that a big wad of extra cash…

NASA goes social to take its case directly to the people

If you want politicians to give you money, you need to build public support for what you do…

Brain Preservation Breakthrough Could Usher in a New Era in Cryonics

Researchers from 21st Century Medicine have developed a new technique to allow long term storage of a near-perfect mammalian brain. It’s a breakthrough that could have serious implications for cryonics, and the futuristic prospect of bringing the frozen dead back to life.

Read more…


DARPA looks to implant computer to interface directly with human brain

A new DARPA program aims to develop an implantable neural interface able to provide unprecedented signal resolution and data-transfer bandwidth between the human brain and the digital world…

ResearchKit: The inside story of how Apple’s revolutionary medical research platform was born

On September 27, 2013, during a dimly-lit presentation…

Turn your iPhone into a microscope for $10

Taking macros of your monitor or American Apparel hoodie with your iPhone is so last year. MAKE Magazine has a tutorial up right now that shows you how to make a powerful microscope up to 375x magnification (if you use



Help NASA solve space’s mysteries with this asteroid app

There are millions of asteroids in the Solar System and relatively few astronomers to track them. They’d hate to miss that one dangerous rogue headed on a collision course with Earth. So NASA has made it easier for the amateur



Architosh publishes Mac professional workstation survey results

Apple needs to engineer a dual-CPU option for the Mac Pro…

New snail species is so punk, it’s named after Joe Strummer

This deep sea snail is covered in spikes, has purple blood and lives in the most extreme ocean environments. So of course the scientists that discovered it had to name it after their favorite punk rocker, Joe Strummer of The



DIY electric train lets you build your own Polar Express

For the kid expecting a Lionel model train set under the Christmas tree, unwrapping a pack of copper wire, a couple of magnets and a battery is sure to disappoint. But show them how to make a train out of



An iPad filled with apps weighs more than one with nothing installed

Which weighs more? An iPad filled with media and apps, or an iPad with no media or apps installed? It sounds like a trick question — the digital age equivalent of “What weighs more, a pound of feathers or a



Scholars debunk claims of high-tech workers shortage, question tech industry’s ‘free pass’

our prominent scholars on Friday questioned why the high-tech industry gets a free pass…

Graphene: The totally amazing wonder material that could revolutionize technology

It conducts heat 10 times better than copper and electricity 100 times better than silicon, is transparent like plastic…

Graphene: The totally amazing wonder material that could revolutionize technology

It conducts heat 10 times better than copper and electricity 100 times better than silicon, is transparent like plastic…

Early testing reveals iPhone app screens for skin cancer more accurately than your doctor

Early testing of an iPhone app developed to detect melanoma…

NHM Alive Review

NHM Alive tries to distill the wonderment and discovery of London’s Natural History Museum into app form — and mostly pulls it off. Sir David Attenborough acts as narrator and guide through the experience, which includes a mixture of photos, descriptive text, CGI stills, and videos that shine a light on the current scientific consensus regarding a cast of 10 prehistoric creatures. Developer Colossus Productions clearly made an effort here to instill a playful, discovery-driven element to the experience, but it’s not clear just what there is to discover — or how — and that makes the app seem frustratingly simple at first. Thankfully, there’s a wealth of detail lurking beneath the surface.

A day mode presents the standard museum fare, using a full-screen photo of the creature’s skeleton in its exhibit paired with a menu that lets you read an interesting primer on its discovery, life, and cause of extinction. The Dippy and American Mastodon exhibits also feature a neat 360-degree view option. If you happen to visit the museum in person, you can search for special symbol codes hidden around the building that can be used to unlock video clips in the app. Even if you can’t make a quick trip to London, though, there’s loads of extra content to discover.

Night mode, which you can switch to with a downward swipe, is where NHM Alive gets really cool. The exhibits seem at first to be cloaked in darkness, but hidden away is a world of wonder. Activating a flashlight reveals the creatures in all their CG glory — replete with lifelike animations and sounds, plus a huge sense of scale — while Attenborough talks you through the key facts. Night mode also includes a selection of quick factoids that you can swipe through on each creature, as well as additional photos, interactive 3D models of them walking or flying, and videos that provide a fascinating glimpse into the process of bringing these long-extinct specimens to life.

The bottom line. Despite a few design missteps, NHM Alive presents a wonderful and imaginative complement to 10 of the most compelling exhibits in the Natural History Museum’s collection of extinct creatures.

Review Synopsis

Product: 

Company: 

Colossus Productions

Price: 

$4.99

Requirements: 

iPhone, iPad, or iPod touch running iOS 6.0 or later

Positives: 

Excellent narration from Sir David Attenborough. High quality photography and animation brings the extinct creatures to life. Plenty of content to explore and discover.

Negatives: 

Only 10 creatures included. App features and content obfuscated by its design. Some videos require a trip to the museum to unlock.

Score: 
4 Great

Discover New Elements and Give Them a Name in Atomic Fusion: Particle Collider

If you thought Quantum Physics was boring and complicated, think again. With the recent launch of a new science-friendly arcade game, not only can you learn about the Periodic Table, but you can also smash together atoms to make new elements. That doesn’t sound too geeky. Does it? Atomic Fusion: Particle Collider is an arcade […]

The first 3D printed organ, a human liver, expected in 2014

Approximately 18 people die every day waiting for an organ transplant…

Journeys of Invention Review

The Science Museum in London is a fantastic place to visit if you’re interested in the history of technology, but if you’re in the States or elsewhere, the chances of seeing the exhibits contained therein may be rather remote. That’s precisely why Journeys of Invention from Touch Press is such a great resource, as it allows you to learn about and interact with objects that are on display in that museum, plus others stored in its repository that aren’t even viewable by members of the public.

Journeys of Invention features 81 objects — like the Apollo 10 command module, or a 17th-century microscope — along with 14 compiled journeys that link them through a logical progression. You can zoom in to any object and hear a sound associated with it, and then tap on it to read a brief description along with some historical context. You can also rotate objects at will; some even have annotations that appear, depending on the object’s orientation. It would’ve been nice to have links out to the web for more extensive information, though, for those still captivated beyond the imagery.

You can explore on your own or follow the set journeys, but even the latter is an entirely flexible experience: at the end of each description, you’re given the option to carry on or perhaps move on to a different, but relevant journey instead. Once a journey is over, you’re also offered the choice to progress to a new one without having to go back to the main menu. The level of interaction is amazing, and you can do things that you wouldn’t be able to do with actual museum exhibits, like work the Enigma machine to view secret messages, or step inside the Apollo 10 capsule as if it were still floating in space.

The app itself is initially free, but only offers one journey along with a handful of objects to explore — a second journey becomes available once you register via Facebook or email, or you can simply gain access to the whole experience for a one-time sum of $9.99 within. The Science Museum may not charge for entry, but unless you’re in close proximity, the app is certainly a lot cheaper — and much more convenient — than a trip to London.

The bottom line. Journeys of Invention is a great interactive learning tool that is beautifully designed to take advantage of the iPad screen. While perhaps not as rich in information as it is interactivity, it should keep users of all ages informed and entertained for a good long while.

Review Synopsis

Company: 

Touch Press

Price: 

Free

Requirements: 

iPad running iOS 7.0 or later

Positives: 

Beautifully designed for the iPad display. Fully rendered and interactive 3D objects. Great, albeit succinct descriptions.

Negatives: 

No option to learn more from within the app itself. Doesn’t switch off if left unattended. Locked into landscape mode.

Score: 
4 Great

The Elements in Action Review

The periodic table: Every element known to man, organized and presented in an elegant, but arguably dry and boring way. Looking at numbers and letters aligned in a table doesn’t really convey what each of those elements does, or what its respective function is. Of course, you could read about them, but The Elements in Action from Touch Press goes much further, letting you see every element — sans the ones that are extremely radioactive, or have an absurdly short half-life — via well-presented videos.

Select an element from the periodic table, and a short original clip will be displayed, along with a few lines explaining what you’re seeing in your choice of 18 different languages. It’s a lot of fun to watch, and although the information isn’t extensive, it’s great to see chemical reactions happen right before your eyes. It’s like having a portable lab in your back pocket. Although the app takes full advantage of the iPad’s spacious screen real estate, its altered layout for the iPhone and iPod touch works remarkably well too.

Even better, should you wish to learn more and go beyond the brief descriptive paragraph, Elements in Action acts as an amazing companion to The Elements: A Visual Exploration. When both apps are installed on the same iPad, you’ll see an icon for either app within the other. Select an element, tap on that icon, and you’ll be taken to that element’s page in the other app. As long as both are loaded into memory, the transition is seamless. Sadly, iPhone users are left out for now, as A Visual Exploration is currently only for iPad, though the next update is planned to make it a universal app and open up the link for all supported iOS device users.

The bottom line. The Elements in Action is a vibrant and exciting resource that lets you dip your toes in the fabric of the universe — without getting bogged down in too much information.

Review Synopsis

Company: 

Touch Press

Price: 

$3.99

Requirements: 

iPhone, iPad, or iPod touch running iOS 7.0 or later

Positives: 

Enjoyable, short original videos. Brief description in multiple languages. Interface altered to take full advantage of either iPad or iPhone displays. Fantastic companion to The Elements: A Visual Exploration.

Negatives: 

Doesn’t remember the selected sort order. Some elements further down the table are missing.

Score: 
4 Great

Recommended Reading: Stuxnet’s more dangerous precursor, fake memories and more

Recommended Reading highlights the best long-form writing on technology in print and on the web. Some weeks, you’ll also find short reviews of books dealing with the subject of technology that we think are worth your time. We hope you enjoy the rea…

Comet Ison may have survived its kiss with the sun

We humans can form curious attachments to non-living things, so when Comet Ison veered recklessly toward the sun, naturally we rooted for the plucky iceball. Unfortunately, scientists feared the worst after seeing it mostly vanish when it brushed …

Experimental 3D scanner creates clear images with almost no light

We’ve seen single-pixel cameras, and now MIT researchers have figured out how to create clear images of dimly-lit objects using single photons — in 3D, no less. The technique doesn’t involve any fancy new hardware, either, as the team worked with…

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