Not only do we not have a solution to a potential pandemic-we may not even have the tools to find it.
A FEW MONTHS AGO, I interviewed Dr. Charles Chiu, infectious-disease specialist and director of the UCSF Viral Diagnostics and Discovery Center. He's pleasant and upbeat, willing to geek out on dumb questions. He also scared me to death. His infectious-disease research is systemsbased, meaning that he doesn’t just test a hypothesis (“Perhaps this sort of bat carries this sort of virus”).
Virtual jumps may be okay for runners, but no horse is going to jump virtual fences for long. Horses are not interested in avoiding laser beams, and the moment they figure out that the fence isn’t solid, they will proceed to run right through it.
In 2018, NASA will launch the James Webb Space Telescope, which will boast mirrors approximately seven times larger than those on the Hubble. Once operational, the telescope will peer through interstellar dust and clearly image some of the youngest stars and galaxies in the universe.
Peering through binoculars can make an Impossibly faraway object look close enough to touch, but with a trade-off: Any little jostle can knock a view out of frame. Most consumer binoculars have a built-in Image-stabilization system that uses an accelerometer, a processor, and a small motor to compensate for user movements.
Typical padlocks have 64,000 possible combinations; the electronic dialSpeed has 22 million, the most of any portable lock. Four directional buttons correspond to numbers or letters. A combo of up to 12 presses signals a motor to release the catch.
Detroit's tiniest luxury car is a also one of its most technoiogically advanced
2013 Cadillac ATS
Long a purveyor of lumbering land barges, Cadillac has released its first compact sedan in more than 30 years: the ATS. Engineers designed the ATS to compete with BMW’s renowned 3-Series. To make it fast and agile, they replaced heavy steel components with aluminum, drilled “lightening holes” in structural parts, and slimmed down the fasteners that hold components together.
The new Windows allows consumers to replace their PCs with tablets
Microsoft Windows 8
Seventy-three million tablets were sold last year, and analysts predict tablet sales to surpass those of traditional PCs by 2016. Yet despite such swift adoption, tablets have been no replacement for laptops and desktops, which are able to run more-robust software suites for media editing and heavy office tasks.
1/Football Quarterbacks will throw spirals more easily with the Baden Perfection than with other pigskins. The ball slopes at a steeper-than-normal 49.3-degree angle from the stripe to the nose, which forces the player’s index finger to grip the center of the ball more tightly. That centralized pressure helps initiate stronger spins. Baden Perfection F7000L Football $60
Nike Elite Jersey
2/Jersey The fit of the new NFL uniforms, made by Nike for 2012, is as pro grade as its price tag, leaving almost no loose fabric for opponents to grab. Designers wound the exterior of the polyester jersey with high-strength Kevlar. The semirigid material conforms to a player’s body as he moves to keep the shirt tight on his frame. Nike Elite Jersey $250
Under Armour MPZ Stealth 5 Pad Impact Top
3/Padding The 0.2-inch-thick pads on the Stealth 5 undershirt provide the thinnest protection available. Dual-density memoryfoam pads cover the player’s shoulders, spine, and ribs. The outer, denser layer absorbs the initial impact from an overzealous 300-pound neighbor, and the inner layer dissipates any remaining force laterally, so less of it reaches the body. Under Armour MPZ Stealth 5 Pad Impact Top $80
4/Digital playbook With the PlayLocker iPad app players can create, animate, and share plays. Coaches plot out their attacks on a series of frames, which the app animates at up to four frames per second. Teammates receive the play as a notification from the app on their own iPhones or iPads—and then safely stow them on the sidelines. PlayLocker Football for IOS From $1
IN LATE JUNE when Google introduced the Nexus Q, an Android-powered device that ports music and video from the cloud to home theaters, critics immediately set to tearing it apart. They called it “baffling” and “overpriced” and generally decried its lack of features.
Can we reengineer ourselves to cope with the effects of climate change?
IN JUNE, NYU bioethics and philosophy professor S. Matthew Liao and colleagues proposed a new way to deal with climate change: reengineer humans to make us less of a burden on the planet. Their paper proposed that doctors could use in-vitro fertilization to select for embryos with genes for short stature, making future generations physically smaller and thus less carbonintensive.
It’s Saturday night at a restaurant. The food’s fantastic, the service flawless. The conversation? It gets off to a good start, but as the number of guests rises, diners struggle to hear and be heard over the mounting cacophony. When John Paluska envisioned Comal, his Mexican restaurant In Berkeley, California, he wondered whether he could find a new way to overcome what Zagat Survey says is restaurant-goers’ second-most-frequent complaint: noise.
"Our robot, named Achilles, is the first to walk in a biologically accurate way. That means it doesn’t just move like a person, but also sends commands to the legs like the human nervous system does. Each leg has eight muscles—Kevlar straps attached to a motor on one end and to the plastic skeleton on the other.
Entrepreneur Josh Tetrick founded Hampton Creek Foods last year to replace one of the most chemically complex Ingredients in cuisine: the egg. According to the American Egg Board, eggs can serve 20 different functions in food, Including aeration, binding, and thickening.
An antenna array designed for the dark side of the moon
How It Works
Radio waves from 0.3 to 120 MHz could provide information about the evolution of the universe during the first 500 million years after the big bang. On Earth, however, those cosmic waves are often drowned out by FM radio waves, digital TV signals, and other Interference, making astronomy In that range difficult.
What If we could upgrade the Internet as fast as we upgrade the gadgets it connects?
WE INVENTED the Internet here in the U.S., but other countries have long since improved on our work. We’re 13th worldwide in average connection speed, and we usually pay more to access those slower connections. In some parts of the country, a world-class connection is unavailable at any price.
When the Navy needs to surprise and overwhelm an inland enemy, It can send In the new Zumwolt-class destroyer—the most technologically advanced warship ever built
THE HEAVY ARTILLERY
WHEN THE USS Zumwalt rolls out of dry dock at Bath Iron Works in Maine next year, the Navy’s newest warship will be 100 feet longer than the destroyers currently serving around the globe—and nearly twice as massive—yet it will have a radar signature 50 times smaller and will carry half the crew.
Our 11th annual celebration of young researchers whose Innovations will change the world
OTHER 13-YEAR-OLD boys want cash for their bar mitzvah. Adam Cohen asked for an oscilloscope. Shortly thereafter, he startled his parents by wandering into the living room with a home-built EKG machine taped to his chest. “They were a bit concerned that I was going to electrocute myself,” Cohen recalls, “but apart from that, they were supportive.”
Where will the next pandemic come from? And how can we stop it?
HOW TO STOP A PANDEMIC
How an RNA Virus Works
In June 2008, a Dutch woman named Astrid Joosten left the Netherlands with her husband for an adventure vacation in Uganda. It wasn’t their first trip to Africa, but it would be more consequential than the others. At home in Noord-Brabant, Joosten, 41, worked as a business analyst for an electrical company.
The Craziest Human-Powered Crafts from the Archives
Yet it wasn't until 1977 that the first one truly flew Flight requires lift, when the net air pressure pushing upward counteracts the craft's weight. For years, many assumed that flight required more lift and more power than the human body alone could provide (although the admonitions did little to stop myriad failed attempts).
WHILE BROWSING a bookstore near his home in Seattle last year, Rob Flicllenger came across a graphic novel titled The Five Fists of Science. The story portrays inventor Nikola Tesla as a crime fighter who battles his enemies with a pair of handheld Tesla coils— transformers that discharge spectacular streams of electricity into the air.
Turn an Android device into a pocket-size media center
The notion that a home entertainment center must be in your actual home is antiquated. With an off-the-shelf adapter and a few apps loaded onto an Android phone or tablet, users can stream movies, TV shows, and videogames from remote computers or media services to a television.
Spontaneous combustion is easier than you think—if you know how to do it
The facts about spontaneous combustion are easily lost. Mostly this is because spontaneous human combustion is a favorite among conspiracy-theorist types. Reports of people suddenly going up in flames tend to omit an essential detail, such as a lit cigarette.
Before you sell, donate, or recycle your old computer, beware: You may be handing personal information to strangers. Simply restoring the operating system to factory settings does not delete all data and neither does formatting the hard drive before reinstalling the OS.
It’s the simplest planner available. Users type plain-language commands into Coolendar—no need for precise syntax—hashtagging keywords to organize similar tasks. For example, “Monday, 5 p.m., don’t forget to pick up the #dry-cleaning.”
After a full day of operating mill machinery in Spain’s Basque country, Ascensio Zubeldia used to fall into bed drained. Each morning he mulled over the perfect bed—one that makes itself—and then he finally built it. Sensors under the mattress detect when the sleeper rises, and three seconds later, compartments that contain robotic arms open.
It’s largely about how it feels in the mouth. Once a piece of cheddar has been heated to around 150°F, the matrix of milk proteins that provide its structure begins to break down, and the cheese takes on a creamy texture that many people find appealing.
Battleships ruled the ocean until World War II, when aircraft carriers usurped the lead role in most naval fleets. In April 1943, POPULAR SCIENCE argued that the Navy still needed battleships—steel, steam-powered warships armed with big guns—to protect convoys and fight enemy craft, despite proposals to phase them out.