So I know I’m not the only one who has woken up after a good night sleep, gotten on with the day and later vaguely remembered dreaming about something cool or crazy, but couldn’t for the life of me remember what it was. Well, what if we could record our dreams and watch them back later on?
Very nice and friendly scientists from Berkeley University have recently started reconstructing imagery and video from people’s minds! Incredible! However, while the technology is still improving, you can see that the results are still a bit blurry and not quite cinema-worthy. I’ll explain why after you watch it:
So the researchers monitored the brainwave activity of three people who were watching YouTube videos from the inside of an MRI machine (they used some Hollywood trailers, of course). The information that was gathered from this analysis was then stored in voxels (3d-pixels), since the pictures were moving (like how they make animation).
The next step of the process was to analyse a few more YouTube videos to compare them to those watched by the researchers. 13-million seconds of videos were seen by the computer to build a potential database from which to reconstruct the original brain signals. The computer then picked 100 videos to combine to make the original videos again. The result is quite blurry and obviously not perfect, but it is apparent that the final video does in fact resemble the original!
The process works kind of like what you tried to do as a kid when you were fingerpainting your dog in primary school using only a few colours. You combined a bit of yellow and red to better resemble your orange dog, right? Well in this case the dog represents the original video, the colours represent the videos that the computers analysed and you are the painter. You mix the paint to recreate the image of the dog that you have in your mind!
Obviously the technology is not ready to make Inception a reality, but it looks like we’re on the way. It’s extremely exciting (even if it is a little unnerving); but I am quite excited for the day that I can relive my journeys around the world, flying like superman or just watching how dreams morph from one thing into another!.
What does baseball and water conservation have in common? The answer is nine-year-old Mason Perez.
Mason hit a homerun with his science project that has helped save water, money and even, the teachers jobs across Reno, NV . It all started when Mason wanted to wash his hands at the Aces baseball stadium but couldn’t. The water pressure was so high it hurt his skin. When he told his mom, she reached over next to the sink and turned down the water intake valve.
Mason’s idea: Why doesn’t everybody do that?
It’s such a simple solution, it seems obvious. And yet, when Mason tested three local facilities, he found they could save between 6 and 25 percent of the water they were using, just by turning down the pressure. Mason and his mom met with Rick Parr, general manager of the Reno Aces, who then went down to the bathroom to test the theory. “You could tell right away that it worked,” Parr told the Reno Gazette-Journal.
Parr instituted Mason’s idea of turning down the valves along with some other water-saving measures, and in 2010 the Aces stadium reduced its water use by 20 percent.
This doesn’t just work for stadiums and schools though: You can do it in your house. Just turn down the valve next to the sinks and spigots, and you’re saving water.
Mason also talked to the school district about his idea.
“You know how teachers have kind of been losing their jobs? If we turned down every valve at every school we have in the Washoe County School District, with all that money we can save, we can save at least one teacher’s job.”
Imagine looking out your airplane window (or alien spacecraft portal) and seeing a giant Mars Exploration Rover or an astronaut a half-kilometer long etched in …. a corn field? That’s exactly what is happening this fall, as seven farms across the US are participating in a special collaboration with NASA called Space Farm 7 to celebrate the space agency’s achievements and progress in space, as well as providing education and activities about agriculture. The farmers have created some absolutely amazing and intricate crop-circle-like formations that double as corn mazes, giving kids and families the chance to get lost — if you will — in space.
Read More on this story here and learn how you can win a chance to tour Kennedy Space Center by voting for your favorite maze!
“Some say the world will end in fire, some say in ice…”
What will be the final destiny of the Universe? Probably it will end in ice, if we are to believe this year’s Nobel Laureates in Physics. They have studied several dozen exploding stars, called supernovae, and discovered that the Universe is expanding at an ever-accelerating rate. The discovery came as a complete surprise even to the Laureates themselves.
The Nobel Prize in Physics 2011 was awarded “for the discovery of the accelerating expansion of the Universe through observations of distant supernovae” with one half to Saul Perlmutter and the other half jointly to Brian P. Schmidt and Adam G. Riess.