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Fast, low-cost device uses the cloud to speed up diagnostic testing for HIV and more

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Columbia engineering professor Sam Sia's handheld mobile device is a fast, low-cost device that uses the cloud to speed up diagnostic testing for HIV and more -- the mChip can easily be used in remote areas around the world. The mChip mobile device is on the left, with a satellite communication modem on the right. (Credit: Columbia Engineering)

Jan. 24, 2013 — Samuel K. Sia, associate professor of biomedical engineering at Columbia Engineering, has taken his innovative lab-on-a-chip and developed a way to not only check a patient's HIV status anywhere in the world with just a finger prick, but also synchronize the results automatically and instantaneously with central health-care records -- 10 times faster, the...

Using Twitter to track the flu: Researchers find a better way to screen the tweets

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This U.S. maps indicate the Twitter system’s rate of influenza in each state in the first week of January, 2013 (higher flu rates are marked with darker red). They show that the country is awash in a high flu rate. (Credit: Image courtesy of Johns Hopkins)

Jan. 24, 2013 — Sifting through social media messages has become a popular way to track when and where flu cases occur, but a key hurdle hampers the process: how to identify flu-infection tweets. Some tweets...

Computer scientists develop new way to study molecular networks

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Jan. 24, 2013 — In biology, molecules can have multi-way interactions within cells, and until recently, computational analysis of these links has been "incomplete," according to T. M. Murali, associate professor of computer science in the College of Engineering at Virginia Tech.

His group authored an article on their new approach to address these shortcomings, titled "Reverse Engineering Molecular Hypergraphs," that received the Best Paper Award at the recent 2012 ACM Conference...

Grammar undercuts security of long computer passwords

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Jan. 24, 2013 — When writing or speaking, good grammar helps people make themselves be understood. But when used to concoct a long computer password, grammar -- good or bad -- provides crucial hints that can help someone crack that password, researchers at Carnegie Mellon University have demonstrated.

A team led by Ashwini Rao, a software engineering Ph.D. student in the Institute for Software Research, developed a password-cracking algorithm that took into account grammar and...

False beliefs persist, even after instant online corrections

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Jan. 24, 2013 — It seems like a great idea: Provide instant corrections to web-surfers when they run across obviously false information on the Internet.

But a new study suggests that this type of tool may not be a panacea for dispelling inaccurate beliefs, particularly among people who already want to believe the falsehood.

"Real-time corrections do have some positive effect, but it is mostly with people who were predisposed to reject the false claim anyway," said R. Kelly...