World first as scientists use tractor beams to make objects dance

World first as scientists use tractor beams to make objects dance

WHY THIS MATTERS IN BRIEF Increasingly the things we think of as science fact are becoming reality, but tractor beams also have more practical applications, such as transforming healthcare and manufacturing.   In addition to creating tractor beams like the ones straight out of Star Trek researchers have also been making more...

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Room temperature superconductors in sight as scientists smash record

Room temperature superconductors in sight as scientists smash record

WHY THIS MATTERS IN BRIEF Being able to create room temperature superconductors with zero electrical resistance will revolutionise everything from computing and energy to telecommunications.   Superconductivity. It’s not on everyone’s hit list of top technologies to follow, and most people probably don’t give a damn about it, but that...

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The founder of China’s largest online retailer envisions a “100% robotic workforce”

The founder of China’s largest online retailer envisions a “100% robotic workforce”

WHY THIS MATTERS IN BRIEF There are particular industries and companies that lend themselves for full automation, and E-Commerce is just one of them.   “I hope my company would be 100% automation someday … no human beings anymore, 100% operated by AI and robots.” That’s Richard Liu’s audacious goal,...

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IBM unveils the world’s first “commercial quantum computer,” but is it?

IBM unveils the world’s first “commercial quantum computer,” but is it?

WHY THIS MATTERS IN BRIEF As the race to be the first company in the world to build a viable, commercial quantum computer heats up IBM moves into prime position.   In the gruelling race to build a practical quantum computer, tech companies are keeping their spirits up by loudly...

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RNA breakthrough makes it possible to cure Cystic Fibrosis with an inhaler

RNA breakthrough makes it possible to cure Cystic Fibrosis with an inhaler

WHY THIS MATTERS IN BRIEF A revolutionary new way to deliver mRNA into the body in aerosol form makes genetically editing faulty genes easier than ever before.   Recent there have been some almost miraculous medical breakthroughs, from treating patients with inherited genetic diseases with in vivo gene therapy treatments...

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Breakthrough AI hacking tool cracks millions of user passwords in minutes

Breakthrough AI hacking tool cracks millions of user passwords in minutes

WHY THIS MATTERS IN BRIEF Artificial Intelligence is a cyber security game changer, for better and worse, and we need to be better prepared for what’s coming.   Last year the credit reporting agency Equifax announced that malicious hackers had leaked the personal information of over 143 million people after their system...

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Joint China-Russia atmospheric experiment spikes temperatures over Europe by 100 Celcius

Joint China-Russia atmospheric experiment spikes temperatures over Europe by 100 Celcius

WHY THIS MATTERS IN BRIEF There are many ways we can modify our atmosphere but microwave manipulation produces some of the most extreme results.   China and Russia have jointly announced that they modified an important layer of the atmosphere above Europe in order to test a controversial new military...

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UK and Singapore set 2021 deadline to launch world’s first quantum communications cubesat

UK and Singapore set 2021 deadline to launch world’s first quantum communications cubesat

WHY THIS MATTERS IN BRIEF Unlike traditional communications technologies quantum communications are unhackable, so countries are racing to deploy them.   Highly secure global communication based on Quantum Key Distribution (QKD), a secure communications cryptographic protocol that’s based on the eerie phenomenon of quantum mechanics, could eventually be made possible...

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Google X spins off its molten salt grid scale storage business

Google X spins off its molten salt grid scale storage business

WHY THIS MATTERS IN BRIEF Renewable energy sources only generate electricity when the sun shines or the wind blows, so companies have to find a way to store it so it can be used in times of scarcity.   One of the biggest problems with renewable energy is that when...

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US proposes to regulate AI the same way it regulates weapons exports

US proposes to regulate AI the same way it regulates weapons exports

WHY THIS MATTERS IN BRIEF AI can be both very beneficial, but also in the wrong hand very dangerous, and the US is thinking about regulating it in the same way they regulate military hardware.   Artificial Intelligence (AI) technology has the capability to be one of, if not the,...

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Dutch man, 69, applies to legally change his age to 49 years old

Dutch man, 69, applies to legally change his age to 49 years old

WHY THIS MATTERS IN BRIEF As anti-aging technologies arrive one day the elderly may well have the bodies and minds much younger than their years, and that will cause a societal dilemma.   There’s a lot more than you might realise going on in the world of ageing, or more...

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OpenAI develops curious AI’s that learn for themselves

OpenAI develops curious AI’s that learn for themselves

WHY THIS MATTERS IN BRIEF Today’s AI’s are force fed training information but companies around the world are trying to create AI’s that learn for themselves which will revolutionise the field.   When playing a video game, what motivates you to carry on? This question is perhaps too broad to...

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Aleph Farms serves up the world’s first lab grown steak

Aleph Farms serves up the world’s first lab grown steak

WHY THIS MATTERS IN BRIEF By 2050 there will be an estimated 10 billion people on the planet, producing our food in new ways will let us alleviate hunger and feed them all.   Over the past couple of years I’ve been watching the rise of vertical farms, that produce...

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New Russian laser weapon obliterates targets in seconds

New Russian laser weapon obliterates targets in seconds

WHY THIS MATTERS IN BRIEF The next generation of warfare will include many things, from autonomous hunter killer robots and intelligent hypersonic weapons, and lasers.   As what’s being termed the new Cold War hots up I’m seeing a surge in the pace of development of fully and semi-autonomous weapons...

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NASA’s ISS robot companion CIMON gets caught copping an attitude

NASA’s ISS robot companion CIMON gets caught copping an attitude

WHY THIS MATTERS IN BRIEF As more machines and humans work alongside one another how we interact with one another will become increasingly crucial.   As he entered his final month on the International Space Station (ISS) on Monday, Alexander Gerst could be proud that he’s helped given birth to...

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Autonomous planes, hypersonic jets and flying cars, Boeing unveils its future

Autonomous planes, hypersonic jets and flying cars, Boeing unveils its future

WHY THIS MATTERS IN BRIEF One day aircraft will be fully autonomous, but getting there is a journey of many steps and this is one of them, and Boeing is placing its bets.   Everything it seems these days is going autonomous, from cars, trains and trucks, to giant cargo ships...

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Boeing unveil their stunning hypersonic space plane concept

Boeing unveil their stunning hypersonic space plane concept

WHY THIS MATTERS IN BRIEF The future of transportation is fast, very fast, and companies are once again getting serious about building commercial hypersonic aircraft.   It’s a vision of the future that could someday jet people from the Los Angeles to Tokyo in just three hours or cut the...

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US military genetics program to turn marine life into giant living sensor networks

US military genetics program to turn marine life into giant living sensor networks

WHY THIS MATTERS IN BRIEF As we learn more about the genetic code and how to modify it organisations around the world are starting to look into new ways of turning nature to their advantage.   A few months ago I wrote about how DARPA, the bleeding edge research arm...

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US researchers get $1.7m grant to create wonder bio-material that lasts 500 million years

US researchers get $1.7m grant to create wonder bio-material that lasts 500 million years

WHY THIS MATTERS IN BRIEF Everything in the universe is made from material, whether it’s biological or synthetic, and as we unravel natures mysteries we could create products that, literally, last forever.   It’s the most durable biological material you’ve never heard of, Sporopollenin, and it makes plastics and other materials...

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Nitanic’s revolutionary AI’s evolve and battle for gamers loyalty

Nitanic’s revolutionary AI’s evolve and battle for gamers loyalty

WHY THIS MATTERS IN BRIEF Traditional marketing, where marketers create and distribute content, is being automated by AI.   This is the future of marketing – automated, viral, and intelligent. Niantic, the company behind Pokemon Go, have announced that they’re going to be using a “thought provoking campaign” that “uses AI to...

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