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Robot allows 'remote presence' in programming brain and spine stimulators

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Jan. 16, 2013 — With the rapidly expanding use of brain and spinal cord stimulation therapy (neuromodulation), new "remote presence" technologies may help to meet the demand for experts to perform stimulator programming, reports a study in the January issue of Neurosurgery.

The preliminary study by Dr. Ivar Mendez of Queen Elizabeth II Health Sciences Centre in Halifax, Nova Scotia, Canada, supports the feasibility and safety of using a remote presence robot -- called the "RP-7" -- to increase access to specialists qualified to program the brain and spine stimulators used in neuromodulation.

Robot Lets Experts Guide Nurses in Programming Stimulators Dr. Mendez and his group developed the RP-7 as a way of allowing...

Fashion blogs: How do ordinary consumers harness social media to become style leaders?

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Jan. 15, 2013 — The Internet has given consumers the unprecedented opportunity to reach a mass audience and thereby advance their social position through displays of good taste, according to a new study in the Journal of Consumer Research.

"Ordinary consumers were previously limited to sharing their views and tastes within their circle of friends and acquaintances, and only media professionals and others in powerful positions could reach a mass audience. But the Internet has...

Thirty percent of teen girls report meeting offline with someone they met online

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Jan. 14, 2013 — A new study highlights the risk that female teenagers face when they go online -- a risk heightened for teen girls who have been victims of abuse or neglect.

The study, published in the journal Pediatrics, shows that 30 percent of teenagers reported having offline meetings with people they have met on the Internet and whose identity had not been fully confirmed prior to the meeting.

"These meetings may have been benign, but for an adolescent girl to do it...

Twitter helps people lose weight, study suggests

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Jan. 14, 2013 — Using Twitter can help you achieve a healthy weight.

A study by researchers at the University of South Carolina's Arnold School of Public Health has found that using Twitter, the popular information network joining people throughout the world, is a valuable support system for helping people lose weight.

Led by Arnold School researcher Brie Turner-McGrievy, the study found that Twitter use among participants in a weight loss program enhanced the likelihood...

Artificial intelligence techniques for optimizing processes in the aeronautics industry

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Jan. 11, 2013 — The computer engineer Susana Ferreiro has produced a thesis entitled 'Contributions towards the diagnosis and prognosis of industrial problems by means of Supervised Classification Techniques' ('Aportacionespara el diagnóstico y pronóstico en problemasindustrialesmediantetécnicas de ClasificaciónSupervisada').This work has been developed at the IK4-TEKNIKER R+D centre under the supervision of the EHU/UPV lecturer Basilio Sierra-Araujo (Head of the Department of...

Investigating the bystander effect using virtual reality

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Animated environment for the simulation. (Credit: Image courtesy of Bournemouth University)

Jan. 11, 2013 — The bystander effect is well-known in behavioural psychology and suggests that the more people who witnessing a violent emergency the less likely it is that someone will intervene. It was first identified in the 1960s, but conducting research on the phenomenon has been difficult. Most experiments rely upon staging fake emergencies or violent encounters using...

Game-based economics research explains why we roll the dice on flu shots

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Jan. 11, 2013 — With 41 states having reported widespread and severe outbreaks of flu this season, timely new research sheds light on why less than half of the American population has gotten a flu shot.

Despite widespread knowledge that a vaccine is the best way to reduce the chances of catching and spreading the flu, even three of the four main TODAY show anchors recently admitted they had not gotten a flu shot (until they did so live on the air).

Using an online computer...

Surgeons may use hand gestures to manipulate MRI images in OR

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Still image from a video illustrating how doctors may soon be using a system in the operating room that recognizes hand gestures as commands to tell a computer to browse and display medical images of the patient during a surgery. (Credit: Image courtesy of Purdue University / Full video available on YouTube at:

Jan. 10, 2013 — Doctors may soon be using a system in the operating room that recognizes hand gestures as commands...

New report: The reach and impact of mathematical sciences

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Jan. 10, 2013 — The Mathematical Sciences in 2025, a new report from the National Research Council, finds that the mathematical sciences are an increasingly integral component of many disciplines -- including biology, medicine, the social sciences, business, advanced design, and climate studies.

However, the expanding role of the mathematical sciences over the past 15 years has not been matched by a comparable increase in federal funding, and the number of federal agencies that...