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Children's meetings offline with people met online examined in new study

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Dec. 18, 2012 — Few parents feel entirely comfortable with their children meeting their online acquaintances in real life. But a new study published in the pioneering Journal of Children and Media sets out to put the risks and benefits of such meetings in perspective.

Monica Barbovschi's study uses data collected as part of the cross-national EU Kids Online II project investigating children's experiences of (and parental concerns about) the Internet. As part of the project, children completed a questionnaire about making contact with new people online. Thirty per cent reported having made such contacts, while only 9% reported face-to-face meetings. Fifty-seven per cent of those children who did pursue their online...

TV and the internet: a marriage made in entertainment heaven

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Dec. 18, 2012 — If you have bought a new television lately, the chances are it is a lot smarter than your old one. Smart TVs, also known as connected or hybrid televisions, featuring integrated internet connectivity, currently account for around a third of TV sales in Europe. They are the end point in a huge and rapidly expanding value chain driven by the intensifying convergence of television and the internet.

Just as accessing the internet solely from a desktop PC is rapidly...

A mathematical formula to decipher the geometry of surfaces like that of cauliflower

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Scientists at the Universidad Carlos III of Madrid (UC3M) have taken part in a research project that describes, for the first time, that laws that govern the development of certain complex natural patterns, such as those found on the surface of cauliflower. (Credit: Image courtesy of Universidad Carlos III de Madrid - Oficina de Información Científica)

Dec. 18, 2012 — Scientists at the Universidad Carlos III of Madrid (UC3M) have taken part in a...

Cream of the crop: Sandwich chips combining the best of two technologies

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Wafer with "sandwich chips". (Credit: FBH/Immerz)

Dec. 18, 2012 — Two Leibniz institutes broke new technological ground and successfully combined their -- up to now separate -- technology worlds. Due to their high performance the novel chips developed within the HiTeK project promises to open up new applications.

Wolfgang Heinrich and Bernd Tillack are convinced of holding the key to faster and more powerful terahertz chips. The two scientists and their...

Noise power on adhesion: New model may help robotic fingers, made of a soft surface, manipulate small objects

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Dec. 17, 2012 — Imagine a solid ball rolling down a slightly inclined ramp. What could be perceived as child's play is the focus of serious theoretical research by Manoj Chaudhury and Partho Goohpattader, two physicists from Lehigh University, Bethlehem, Pennsylvania, USA.

Their study, which is about to be published in EPJ E, has one thing in common with childhood behaviour. It introduces a mischievous idea, namely studying the effect of random noise, such as vibrations, on the...

Woman with quadriplegia feeds herself chocolate using mind-controlled robot arm

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Jan Scheuermann, who has quadriplegia, brings a chocolate bar to her mouth using a robot arm she is guiding with her thoughts. Researcher Elke Brown, M.D., watches in the background. Click the photo to download it in high resolution. (Credit: UPMC)

Dec. 17, 2012 — Reaching out to "high five" someone, grasping and moving objects of different shapes and sizes, feeding herself dark chocolate. For Jan Scheuermann and a team of researchers from the University of...

Toward a new model of the cell: Everything you always wanted to know about genes

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This image shows the hierarchical ontology of genes, cellular components and processes derived from large genomic datasets. (Credit: UC San Diego School of Medicine)

Dec. 16, 2012 — Turning vast amounts of genomic data into meaningful information about the cell is the great challenge of bioinformatics, with major implications for human biology and medicine. Researchers at the University of California, San Diego School of Medicine and colleagues have proposed a new...

Extending Einstein's ideas: New kind of quantum entanglement demonstrated

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Dec. 14, 2012 — Physicists at the University of Calgary and at the Institute for Quantum Computing in Waterloo have published new research in Nature Physics which builds on the original ideas of Einstein and adds a new ingredient: a third entangled particle.

Quantum entanglement is one of the central principles of quantum physics, which is the science of sub-atomic particles. Multiple particles, such as photons, are connected with each other even when they are very far apart and...

Engineers develop new energy-efficient computer memory using magnetic materials

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MeRAM bit. (Credit: Image courtesy of University of California - Los Angeles)

Dec. 14, 2012 — By using electric voltage instead of a flowing electric current, researchers from UCLA's Henry Samueli School of Engineering and Applied Science have made major improvements to an ultra-fast, high-capacity class of computer memory known as magnetoresistive random access memory, or MRAM.

The UCLA team's improved memory, which they call MeRAM for magnetoelectric...