Tag: Massachusetts Institute of Technology

‘I Want What My Male Colleague Has, and That Will Cost a Few Million Dollars’

Northern San Diego County is a scientific mecca, home to some of the world’s leading biotech companies, renowned research institutions and a world-class university. But the Salk Institute for Biological Research, perched on a cliff above the Pacific Ocean in La Jolla, is distinguished even among its neighbors. Jonas Salk founded the institution in 1963 […]

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First Photo of a Black Hole May Be Revealed. Here’s How to Follow the Announcement.

At 9 a.m. Eastern time on Wednesday, a group of astronomers who run a globe-girdling network of radio telescopes called the Event Horizon Telescope are expected to unveil the first-ever images of a black hole. For some years now, scientific literature, news media and films have featured remarkably sophisticated and academic computer simulations of black […]

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Flashing Lights and Sounds Improve Memory and Learning Skills in Mice

A scan of a mouse’s brain showing that some Alzheimer’s-like plaques dissipated after the mouse saw flashing lights and heard clicking sounds. Video by Picower Institute for Learning and Memory, M.I.T.Credit Could people’s eyes and ears help fix the damage Alzheimer’s disease does to the brain? Just by looking at flashing light and listening to […]

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Russia Has a Case. So Does America. So Save the Nuclear Treaty.

In Greek mythology, Pandora had a box she had been warned to never open. With no understanding of the consequences, and despite the warning, she opened the box, irreversibly releasing the plagues that would affect all of humanity forever. The American threat to withdraw from the Intermediate Nuclear Forces Treaty, which prohibits possession of missiles […]

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A High-Tech Pill to End Drug Injections

Here was the challenge for bioengineers: Find a way to for patients to take drugs — like insulin or monoclonal antibodies used to treat cancers and other diseases — without injections. The medicines are made of molecules too big to be absorbed through the stomach or intestines; in any event, the drugs would be quickly […]

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How Do You Govern Machines That Can Learn? Policymakers Are Trying to Figure That Out

CAMBRIDGE, Mass. — Hal Abelson, a renowned computer scientist at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology, was working the classroom, coffee cup in hand, pacing back and forth. The subject was artificial intelligence, and his students last week were mainly senior policymakers from countries in the 36-nation Organization for Economic Cooperation and Development. Mr. Abelson began […]

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The Mysteries of Animal Movement

David Hu was changing his infant son’s diaper when he got the idea for a study that eventually won him the Ig Nobel prize. No, not the Nobel Prize — the Ig Nobel prize, which bills itself as a reward for “achievements that make people laugh, then think.” As male infants will do, his son […]

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Liberal Hypocrisy in College Admissions?

We progressives hail opportunity, egalitarianism and diversity. Yet here’s our dirty little secret: Some of our most liberal bastions in America rely on a system of inherited privilege that benefits rich whites at the expense of almost everyone else. I’m talking about “legacy preferences” that elite universities give to children of graduates. These universities constitute […]

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What Comes After the Roomba?

SAN FRANCISCO — It has been 16 years since the Roomba robot vacuum cleaner was introduced by iRobot. Partly inspired by a novel robotics approach known as “fast, cheap and out-of-control,” the humble Roomba was not much of a robot. It simply wandered around a room sucking up dust and debris. A second generation was […]

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How the Blockchain Could Break Big Tech’s Hold on A.I.

SAN FRANCISCO — Pairing artificial intelligence and the blockchain might be what you would expect from a scammer looking to make a quick buck in 2018. The two concepts, after all, are two of the most buzzed about and least understood ideas in the tech universe. And the blockchain, the database design introduced by Bitcoin, […]

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M.I.T. Plans College for Artificial Intelligence, Backed by $1 Billion

Every major university is wrestling with how to adapt to the technology wave of artificial intelligence — how to prepare students not only to harness the powerful tools of A.I., but also to thoughtfully weigh its ethical and social implications. A.I. courses, conferences and joint majors have proliferated in the last few years. But the […]

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Harvard’s Endowment Grew 10% Last Year, but Some Rivals Did Better

Harvard University’s endowment, the world’s largest, grew 10 percent in the most recent fiscal year to $39.2 billion, officials said on Friday. That was slightly better than the previous year, when Harvard began to revamp the endowment under a new investment chief, but fell short of returns reported recently by several other large universities. The […]

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Matter: Scientists Are Retooling Bacteria to Cure Disease

Advertisement matter By manipulating DNA, researchers are trying to create microbes that, once ingested, work to treat a rare genetic condition — a milestone in synthetic biology. ImageA newborn is tested for PKU, a rare inherited blood disorder, at a hospital in California.CreditCreditSpencer Grant/Science Source Sept. 4, 2018 In a study carried out over the […]

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