Tag: Scholarship

Prototyping the betentacled, inflatable soft robots of zero gee

The MIT Media Lab’s Spatial Flux Project was created by Carson Smuts and Chrisoula Kapelonis to imagine and prototype soft inflatable robots that would be designed to operate in zero-gee, where there is no up or down and “we do not have to contend with architecture’s greatest arch-nemesis, gravity.” Their work is […]

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America, Compromised: Lawrence Lessig explains corruption in words small enough for the Supreme Court to understand

By Cory Doctorow <!– By Cory Doctorow –> Lawrence Lessig was once best-known as the special master in the Microsoft Antitrust Case, then he was best known as the co-founder of Creative Commons, then as a fire-breathing corruption fighter: in America, Compromised, a long essay (or short nonfiction book), Lessig proposes as lucid and devastating […]

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Security researchers identify “fingerprints” in 3D printed objects that can be used to trace their manufacturing

In PrinTracker: Fingerprinting 3D Printers using Commodity Scanners (Scihub mirror), a paper to be presented at the ACM SIGSAC Conference on Computer and Communications Security conference in Toronto this month, a group of U Buffalo and Northeastern researchers present a model for uniquely identifying which 3D printer produced a given manufactured object, which […]

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Tomorrow: come to our University of Chicago seminar on Renaissance censorship and internet censorship

Ada Palmer is a University of Chicago Renaissance historian (and so much more: librettist, science fiction novelist, and all-round polymath); she has convened a series of seminars at the University in collaboration with science and piracy historian Adrian Johns, and me! We’re exploring the parallels between the censorship systems that sprang up at […]

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The ethics of wiping out a mosquito species

The announcement from a new genetic technology had successfully eradicated a carefully contained population of Anopheles gambiae mosquitoes grabbed headlines last week across the world. It not only indicated an incredible piece of science. It also opened a Pandora’s box of complicated ethical questions. The technology works by creating a disruption to a […]

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Twitter suspends academic who quoted feminist STEM research

MIT Comparative Media Studies researcher/instructor Chris Peterson is an adrent supporter of the Math Prize for Girls, and as part of his work with the organization, he’s learned about the way that STEM fields were once considered inherently feminine, while the higher-status humanities were dominated by men — it’s the subject of some […]

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OLIVE: a system for emulating old OSes on old processors that saves old data from extinction

Olive (“Open Library of Images for Virtualized Execution”) is an experimental service from Carnegie Mellon University that stores images of old processors, as well as the old operating systems that ran on top of them, along with software packages for those old OSes; this allows users to access old data from obsolete systems inside […]

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Consortium of the largest science funders in Europe announce that they’ll only fund open access research

Eleven of Europe’s largest scientific research funders, responsible for €7.6B in annual grants, have announced “Plan S,” whereby scientists will only be able to get research grants if they promise to first publish all their work in open access, no-cost journals. Scientific publishing is a weird beast. Multibillion-dollar companies pay nothing […]

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A reliable credit-card skimmer detector: a card that detects multiple read heads

A team from the University of Florida won a 2018 Usenix Security Distinguished Paper Award for Fear the Reaper: Characterization and Fast Detection of Card Skimmers, which presents their work on the “Skim Reaper,” a fast, easy-to-use, reliable credit-card skimmer-detector. The team analyzed the NYPD’s trove of skimmers and realized that skimmers overwhelmingly […]

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Beyoncé and Jay-Z Will Award Over $1 Million In Scholarships to 11 Lucky High School Seniors

Photo: Raven Varona (Parkwood Entertainment) Beyoncé Knowles-Carter and Shawn “Jay-Z” Carter are already well known for their philanthropy, especially as it pertains to contributing toward the higher education costs of college-bound students. They are continuing that legacy this year with a new scholarship program for the 2018-2019 school year. Parkwood […]

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“Meaningless rituals” boost self-control

Research published in the Journal of Personality and Social Psychology (paywalled, no Sci-Hub mirror) describes a fascinating experimental outcome in which subjects were asked to enact “meaningless rituals” (“knocking the table with their knuckles, closing their eyes and counting, among other things”) before being confronted with a self-control challenge (eating two carrots, then deciding […]

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When should the press pay attention to trolls, lies and disinformation?

Whitney Phillips (previously), a researcher at the “think/do tank” Data & Society (previously) has prepared a snappy, short report on the paradox of covering disinformation campaigns, trolling, and outright lies? At the heart of the conundrum is the idea that merely reporting on this kind of bullshit can give it “oxygen” that […]

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Retired Special Ed Teacher Leaves $1 Million To Students In Will

DUMONT, NJ (CBS Local) – Genevieve Via Cava was a special education teacher in New Jersey for years before passing away in 2011. Before she died, the educator made a promise to give her school a million dollars one day. Via Cava kept that promise and a new scholarship has just been created with her amazing […]

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