supercomputer

Cleveland Clinic and IBM team up to make Watson a Doctor (video)

Source: http://www.engadget.com/2012/10/30/cleveland-clinic-watson/

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Medical research facility Cleveland Clinic and IBM are teaming up to develop ways to let supercomputer Watson become a useful tool for doctors. The machine’s ability to analyze language and scour its database for answers is hoped to offer quicker and more exhaustive diagnoses for patients. As modern medical students spend less time memorizing diseases, they’re focusing on learning how to think critically and navigate the huge amount of available data. Big Blue is also hoping that the Jeopardy champion will learn how to digest a person’s medical records in order to match up their history with maladies. We’re just nervous that someone will give Watson a telepresence robot and send him out onto the wards — you’d be worried about his bedside manner if you’ve seen his ruthless quizzing manner.

Continue reading Cleveland Clinic and IBM team up to make Watson a Doctor (video)

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http://w ww.engadget.com/2012/10/30/cleveland-clinic-watson/”>Cleveland Clinic and IBM team up to make Watson a Doctor (video) originally appeared on Engadget on Tue, 30 Oct 2012 15:46:00 EDT. Please see our terms for use of feeds.

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Wednesday, October 31st, 2012 news No Comments

Source: http://gizmodo.com/5946148/a-water+cooled-chip-that-concentrates-the-sun-to-desalinate-water

A Water-Cooled Chip That Concentrates the Sun to Desalinate WaterAnyone who’s dropped a cellphone in the bath knows that water and microelectronics don’t usually mix well. But at IBM’s Swiss lab in Zurich, marrying the two is becoming almost commonplace: microprocessors with water coursing through microchannels carved deep inside them are already crunching data in SuperMUC, an IBM supercomputer – with the heat that the water carries away used to warm nearby buildings.

And last week, on an unseasonally sunny Zurich rooftop, IBM went public before begoggled journalists with a demo of the technology’s newest application: a solar energy-generating microchip array whose waste heat might one day drive desalination systems in arid areas like the Sahara. The firm has long promised this system, and it’s still a work in progress, but it has now reached a form that can be demonstrated.

The trick with a concentrated photovoltaic (CPV) system like IBM’s is to place a high-performance electricity-generating solar cell array at the focal point of a dish that collects sunlight (unlike a solar concentrator, which focuses a field of sun-tracking mirrors onto a steam generator that drives a turbine). In IBM’s CPV system, water gushes through the base of the solar cells, cooling them to a temperature where they convert sunlight to electricity most efficiently. This beats regular solar power in two ways: it guarantees optimum efficiency and creates hot water that can be used for any purpose – with a multi-effect boiling desalination process being IBM’s choice.

On IBM’s rooftop, I donned ultra-dark goggles to watch Stephen Paredes, Bruno Michel and colleagues demonstrate their dazzling concept. A 1.5-metre mirrored dish concentrated the sun’s energy by 150 times onto their prototype CPV chip, which has been engineered to maximise thermal contact with a water-cooled layer. It’s fascinating to see their control rig: half of it is electronic but the rest, frankly, is plumbing – an interesting mix of disciplines indeed. Paredes’s laptop showed the concentrator dish conversion efficiency to be about 18 per cent – respectable for a prototype, he says.

Their research aim now is to move towards 40 per cent efficiency or more with better-cooled CPV arrays that can cope with solar radiation 5000 times the sun’s normal intensity. “We know how to engineer these cooling packages for computers so we’re confident we can make this contribution to solar energy,” says Michel.


A Water-Cooled Chip That Concentrates the Sun to Desalinate WaterNew Scientist reports, explores and interprets the results of human endeavour set in the context of society and culture, providing comprehensive coverage of science and technology news.

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Tuesday, September 25th, 2012 Uncategorized No Comments

Source: http://gizmodo.com/5946148/a-water+cooled-chip-that-concentrates-the-sun-to-desalinate-water

A Water-Cooled Chip That Concentrates the Sun to Desalinate WaterAnyone who’s dropped a cellphone in the bath knows that water and microelectronics don’t usually mix well. But at IBM’s Swiss lab in Zurich, marrying the two is becoming almost commonplace: microprocessors with water coursing through microchannels carved deep inside them are already crunching data in SuperMUC, an IBM supercomputer – with the heat that the water carries away used to warm nearby buildings.

And last week, on an unseasonally sunny Zurich rooftop, IBM went public before begoggled journalists with a demo of the technology’s newest application: a solar energy-generating microchip array whose waste heat might one day drive desalination systems in arid areas like the Sahara. The firm has long promised this system, and it’s still a work in progress, but it has now reached a form that can be demonstrated.

The trick with a concentrated photovoltaic (CPV) system like IBM’s is to place a high-performance electricity-generating solar cell array at the focal point of a dish that collects sunlight (unlike a solar concentrator, which focuses a field of sun-tracking mirrors onto a steam generator that drives a turbine). In IBM’s CPV system, water gushes through the base of the solar cells, cooling them to a temperature where they convert sunlight to electricity most efficiently. This beats regular solar power in two ways: it guarantees optimum efficiency and creates hot water that can be used for any purpose – with a multi-effect boiling desalination process being IBM’s choice.

On IBM’s rooftop, I donned ultra-dark goggles to watch Stephen Paredes, Bruno Michel and colleagues demonstrate their dazzling concept. A 1.5-metre mirrored dish concentrated the sun’s energy by 150 times onto their prototype CPV chip, which has been engineered to maximise thermal contact with a water-cooled layer. It’s fascinating to see their control rig: half of it is electronic but the rest, frankly, is plumbing – an interesting mix of disciplines indeed. Paredes’s laptop showed the concentrator dish conversion efficiency to be about 18 per cent – respectable for a prototype, he says.

Their research aim now is to move towards 40 per cent efficiency or more with better-cooled CPV arrays that can cope with solar radiation 5000 times the sun’s normal intensity. “We know how to engineer these cooling packages for computers so we’re confident we can make this contribution to solar energy,” says Michel.


A Water-Cooled Chip That Concentrates the Sun to Desalinate WaterNew Scientist reports, explores and interprets the results of human endeavour set in the context of society and culture, providing comprehensive coverage of science and technology news.

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Tuesday, September 25th, 2012 Uncategorized No Comments

Gamers Redesign a Protein That Stumped Scientists for Years [Science]

Source: http://gizmodo.com/5878459/gamers-redesign-a-protein-that-stumped-scientists-for-years

Gamers Redesign a Protein That Stumped Scientists for YearsFolding: it’s detestable and boring, as any Gap employee can tell you. But it’s also a totally fun thing you can do in a video game! And today it’s particularly exciting because players of the online game Foldit have redesigned a protein, and their work is published in the science journal Nature Biotechnology.

It seems nobler than shooting people in the face, somehow. Granted, Foldit attracts a unique kind of gamer who enjoys obsessing over biological protein folding patterns. Proteins get their function from the way they are folded into coils like in the image above. When the amino acids in a protein interact, they create that coiled, three-dimensional structure. Scientists can manipulate the structure to make the protein more efficient. In Foldit, designs that create the most efficient proteins garner the highest scores.

University of Washington in Seattle scientists Zoran Popovic, director of the Center for Game Science, and biochemist David Baker developed Foldit (which is different from Folding@home, Stanford software that lets people donate their idle computer processing power to create a protein-folding supercomputer). By playing it, at-home gamers have redesigned a protein for the first time, and they did it better and faster than scientists who have trained their entire careers to build better proteins. Justin Siegel, a biophysicist in Baker’s group told Scientific American:

I worked for two years to make these enzymes better and I couldn’t do it. Foldit players were able to make a large jump in structural space and I still don’t fully understand how they did it.

Here’s how it works: Researchers send a series of puzzles to Foldit’s 240,000 registered users. The scientists sift through the results for the best designs and take those into the lab for real-life testing. They combed through 180,000 designs to get to the version of the protein published today. The paper details an enzyme that thanks to the crowdsourced redesign is 18-fold more active than the original version.

Now for the anticlimactic part: this particular enzyme doesn’t really have any practical uses. But the researchers say it’s a proof of concept, and future Foldit designs will be more useful. In fact, Baker has fed players a protein that blocks the flu virus that led to the 1918 pandemic—and their puzzle solving for this one could lead to an actual drug.

Nature via Scientific American

Image: Foldit


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Tuesday, January 24th, 2012 news No Comments

Gamers Redesign a Protein That Stumped Scientists for Years [Science]

Source: http://gizmodo.com/5878459/gamers-redesign-a-protein-that-stumped-scientists-for-years

Gamers Redesign a Protein That Stumped Scientists for YearsFolding: it’s detestable and boring, as any Gap employee can tell you. But it’s also a totally fun thing you can do in a video game! And today it’s particularly exciting because players of the online game Foldit have redesigned a protein, and their work is published in the science journal Nature Biotechnology.

It seems nobler than shooting people in the face, somehow. Granted, Foldit attracts a unique kind of gamer who enjoys obsessing over biological protein folding patterns. Proteins get their function from the way they are folded into coils like in the image above. When the amino acids in a protein interact, they create that coiled, three-dimensional structure. Scientists can manipulate the structure to make the protein more efficient. In Foldit, designs that create the most efficient proteins garner the highest scores.

University of Washington in Seattle scientists Zoran Popovic, director of the Center for Game Science, and biochemist David Baker developed Foldit (which is different from Folding@home, Stanford software that lets people donate their idle computer processing power to create a protein-folding supercomputer). By playing it, at-home gamers have redesigned a protein for the first time, and they did it better and faster than scientists who have trained their entire careers to build better proteins. Justin Siegel, a biophysicist in Baker’s group told Scientific American:

I worked for two years to make these enzymes better and I couldn’t do it. Foldit players were able to make a large jump in structural space and I still don’t fully understand how they did it.

Here’s how it works: Researchers send a series of puzzles to Foldit’s 240,000 registered users. The scientists sift through the results for the best designs and take those into the lab for real-life testing. They combed through 180,000 designs to get to the version of the protein published today. The paper details an enzyme that thanks to the crowdsourced redesign is 18-fold more active than the original version.

Now for the anticlimactic part: this particular enzyme doesn’t really have any practical uses. But the researchers say it’s a proof of concept, and future Foldit designs will be more useful. In fact, Baker has fed players a protein that blocks the flu virus that led to the 1918 pandemic—and their puzzle solving for this one could lead to an actual drug.

Nature via Scientific American

Image: Foldit


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Tuesday, January 24th, 2012 news No Comments

Watson now hunting down patent trolls, plans Ken Jennings’ elaborate demise

Source: http://www.engadget.com/2011/12/09/watson-now-hunting-down-patent-trolls-plans-ken-jennings-elabo/

The Watson supercomputer used its speech recognition, natural language processing, machine learning and data mining abilities to crush puny human Ken Jennings’ dreams of winning at “Jeopardy!”, but now Big Blue has it chasing down medical patent trolls for fun. Incorporating the Strategic IP Insight Platform, IBM has now programmed Watson to scan millions of pharmaceutical patents and biomedical journals to discover, analyze, and record any info pertaining to drug discovery. SIIP can then look for the names of chemical compounds, related diagrams, the company and scientist who invented and works with the compounds and related words to determine a patent’s rightful owner. The SIIP function can also highlight which patents could be targeted for acquisition by trolls looking to control a property via a lawsuit or licensing agreement. Click past the break for a video outlining the project, along with Watson’s announcement of its engagement to “Skynet“.

Continue reading Watson now hunting down patent trolls, plans Ken Jennings’ elaborate demise

Watson now hunting down patent trolls, plans Ken Jennings’ elaborate demise originally appeared on Engadget on Fri, 09 Dec 2011 05:20:00 EDT. Please see our terms for use of feeds.

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Friday, December 9th, 2011 news No Comments

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