Mike McRae
Mike McRae
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Engineers Successfully Test New Chip With Download Speeds of 44.2 Terabits Per Second

Engineers Successfully Test New Chip With Download Speeds of 44.2 Terabits Per Second

A tiny device called a micro-comb could one day replace existing internet infrastructure to hit crazy new highs in download speeds, providing millions with ample data at the same time, even during the busiest periods. The lightweight technology has recently been put to the test in a field trial that measured data rates of an astonishing 44.2 terabits per second, all emitted from a single light source.The micro-comb chips themselves aren't exactly new, having been invented around a decade ago. But with rising pressure on our data highways, the technology is now showing promise as a way to...

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Mike McRae
4d ago
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These 80-Million-Year-Old Sea Creatures Look Shockingly Similar to Buckyballs

These 80-Million-Year-Old Sea Creatures Look Shockingly Similar to Buckyballs

Life on the ocean floor 80 million years ago was tough. Sea levels were shallow, predators were ever on the prowl, and there was always some other slimy, spiky, hard-shelled critter willing to steal your spot. To survive, ancient relatives of the sea urchin reshaped their anatomy to become dead ringers for robust organic molecules made of carbon, known as buckyballs. It wasn't merely a solid choice, either – it was their mathematical destiny.Fossils representing two primitive echinoderm species from the Late Cretaceous period reveal that the arrangements of their protective plates, called a...

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Mike McRae
May 15
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Scientists Find Honeybees Can Trigger 'Virgin Births' With Just a Single Gene

Scientists Find Honeybees Can Trigger 'Virgin Births' With Just a Single Gene

Hollywood has never produced a movie about South Africa's Cape honeybees, and frankly it's a travesty.The pitch writes itself: Aspiring to become a queen, a lowly worker leaves home to invade a rival nest and successfully fills it with her clones. All thanks to the talents of a single, amazing gene that allows her to ditch men. Research by scientists from the University of Sydney means we can even slap 'loosely based on a true story' under the title credits. Unlike the majority of related honey-loving subspecies, any old Cape honeybee sister to produce a perfume that tells the hive she's...

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Mike McRae
May 8
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Housemate Chewing Too Loudly? Your Brain Could Be Producing Misophonia

Housemate Chewing Too Loudly? Your Brain Could Be Producing Misophonia

The sound of people chewing, slurping, tapping, or humming can drive some people into a rage, and scientists have actually discovered the neurological wiring responsible for this strange condition. Called , it describes the unreasonable emotions that well up in some of us when we hear certain repetitive noises being produced by other humans. People with this condition experience annoyance or even anger at the clacking of a keyboard, the rustling of a chip packet, or the smacking of lips.While it's been since 2000, research into the cause and prevalence of misophonia has been limited. There...

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Mike McRae
Apr 17
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Even Just Opening a Plastic Bottle Releases Microscopic Pollution, Study Shows

Even Just Opening a Plastic Bottle Releases Microscopic Pollution, Study Shows

Sure - after cracking open that refreshing bottle of chilled mountain spring water you have every intention of throwing it into recycling, right? Sorry to say, but just unscrewing the lid unleashes a dusting of tiny plastic particles, according to new research. Just how much of a dusting depends on a variety of factors, but researchers from the University of Newcastle and Flinders University in Australia, and the Chinese Academy of Sciences, have put some numbers to the sizes and quantities of flakes and fibres generated every time we snap, cut, and tear a piece of plastic.Through the...

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Mike McRae
Mar 24
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Helix of an Elusive Rare Earth Metal Could Help Push Moore's Law to The Next Level

Helix of an Elusive Rare Earth Metal Could Help Push Moore's Law to The Next Level

To cram ever more computing power into your pocket, engineers need to come up with increasingly ingenious ways to add transistors to an already crowded space.Unfortunately there's a limit to how small you can make a wire. But a twisted form of rare earth metal just might have what it takes to push the boundaries a little further. A team of researchers funded by the US Army have discovered a way to turn twisted nanowires of one of the rarest of rare earth metals, , into a material with just the right properties that make it an ideal transistor at just a couple of nanometres across."This...

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Mike McRae
Feb 24
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We Just Found an 11-Million-Year-Old Ancestor That Hints How Humans Began to Walk

We Just Found an 11-Million-Year-Old Ancestor That Hints How Humans Began to Walk

The fact we can confidently balance on top of a pair of meat-sticks without toppling over is the very symbol of human evolution. Yet just how we came to stand upright in the first place remains a hotly debated topic. Now we have a new piece in the puzzle. Recently discovered fossils left by a relative who lived during the Miocene some 11.6 million years ago has provided compelling new evidence that our journey onto open ground could be compared to a toddler learning to walk, rather than a baby rising from a crawl. Thanks to an assortment of well-preserved hominid bones uncovered from a...

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Mike McRae
Nov 7
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