Category Archives: Science & Technology

Ultrafine fibers have exceptional strength

>>New technique developed at MIT could produce strong, resilient nanofibers for many applications Researchers at MIT have developed a process that can produce ultrafine fibers — whose diameter is measured in nanometers, or billionths of a meter — that are exceptionally strong and tough. These

New depth sensors could be sensitive enough for self-driving cars

>>Computational method improves the resolution of time-of-flight depth sensors 1,000-fold For the past 10 years, the Camera Culture group at MIT’s Media Lab has been developing innovative imaging systems — from a camera that can see around corners to one that can read text in closed books — by

New technique allows rapid screening for new types of solar cells

>>Approach could bypass the time-consuming steps currently needed to test new photovoltaic materials The worldwide quest by researchers to find better, more efficient materials for tomorrow’s solar panels is usually slow and painstaking. Researchers typically must produce lab samples — which are often composed of multiple layers

Computer systems predict objects’ responses to physical forces

>>Results may help explain how humans do the same thing Josh Tenenbaum, a professor of brain and cognitive sciences at MIT, directs research on the development of intelligence at the Center for Brains, Minds, and Machines, a multiuniversity, multidisciplinary project based at MIT that seeks to

Engineers create plants that glow

>>Illumination from nanobionic plants might one day replace some electrical lighting. Imagine that instead of switching on a lamp when it gets dark, you could read by the light of a glowing plant on your desk. MIT engineers have taken a critical first step toward

How privacy policies affect genetic testing

>>Study: State-level disclosure laws affect patients’ eagerness to have their DNA tested Different types of privacy laws in U.S. states produce markedly different effects on the willingness of patients to have genetic testing done, according to a new study co-authored by an MIT professor. As

Reading a neural network’s mind

>>Technique illuminates the inner workings of artificial-intelligence systems that process language Neural networks, which learn to perform computational tasks by analyzing huge sets of training data, have been responsible for the most impressive recent advances in artificial intelligence, including speech-recognition and automatic-translation systems. During training,

Device makes power conversion more efficient

>>New design could dramatically cut energy waste in electric vehicles, data centers, and the power grid    Power electronics, which do things like modify voltages or convert between direct and alternating current, are everywhere. They’re in the power bricks we use to charge our portable