Better IT support could make users more ignorant

A new study shows tech skills follow the same rule of dependence as other things: When someone's there to do something for you, you never learn to do it yourself.

DARPA tests laser weapon for fighters, drones

DARPA tests laser weapon for fighters, drones

DARPA and the Air Force will test this summer the HELLADS laser system that could show up in drones and fighters as early as 2016.

Virtual reality could be the most important gimmick ever based on a brain flaw

Virtual reality therapy is being widely used for mental and physical therapy, is about to be huge in entertainment and still works only because human brains are stupid in very specific ways.

Card-sized diagnostics, e-skin are future of wearable medicine

Think your Apple Watch is next-gen? Try printing a card that will track your diabetes or wrap on an e-skin to monitor and transmit your vital signs to a doctor.

Tethered drones only look crazy

Tethering high-speed drones teaches precise flight control that could flood businesses, neighborhoods with high-speed UAVs in a few years

Research shows sysadmins may outlive IT execs

The small amount of activity it still takes to run a datacenter or support end users is enough to cut the risk of death from sitting by more than a third.

Time to let domestic-spy Patriot Act rules die

How long can you trust the judgement of people who think iPhone is a terrorist weapon and can't even lie effectively about how big a waste domestic surveillance programs have really been?

U.S. issues bogus, unenforceable ban of supercomputer chips for China

U.S. Department of Commerce uses bogus excuse to ban sale of Xeons for Tianhe-2 supercomputer, impacting nothing except Intel's sales.

Mental health research tool: Robot aquarium fish of horror

Mental health research tool: Robot aquarium fish of horror

Robotic faux predator created solely to terrify tiny, innocent zebrafish so they can be used as stress-response stand-ins for humans during stress studies

DARPA needs drones, fighters, missiles to attack in tandem; wants open systems to make it happen

DIY air-defenses-destruction kits could be as unstoppable as open systems, BYOD and the cloud.

Google bringing vision to robots that need touch

Google teamed up with Johnson & Johnson and appears to be trying to make vision and cost better in robot-assisted surgery, rather than adding new senses that would make it safer and more effective.

Pentagon aims to keep enemy from controlling its best weapons

Even if we keep our smartest weapons systems from being turned on us, we're still a little slow on the whole electronic warfare, thing, according to the Pentagon's chief weapons buyer, tester.

Japan aims 'Octopus' robot at nuclear disasters

Rubble-climbing, path-clearing, four-armed, four-tracked 'bot designed to help during disasters like the Fukushima plant meltdown that beat 'disaster' robots unable to deal with harsh conditions.

Anti-robot protest takes aim at the wrong villains

A mini-protest at SXSW tried to raise awareness of the dangers of robotics and AI, neither of which holds a candle to the dangers old-fashioned human intelligence already poses using the same technologies.

DARPA's future war looks like a video game

Serious effort to bring genuinely innovative, untouchable capabilities to the U.S. military focuses on augmented reality for ground troops.

Mining the Moon: A boondoggle that might do some good

"Trillions of dollars" is an exaggeration of the value of helium-3, especially without practical fusion, but other lunar resources will help fuel near-Earth exploration

DARPA teaches robots to cook by watching YouTube

DARPA teaches robots to cook by watching YouTube

System that lets them learn complex actions by observing could make robots far more capable, helpful and cheap.

Test shows big data text analysis inconsistent, inaccurate

Test shows big data text analysis inconsistent, inaccurate

"State of the art" method to categorize and analyze unstructured data delivers different results from identical data one time in five, is wrong one time in 10, new study shows

'Mini-brain' in spinal cord helps brain keep body balanced

'Mini-brain' in spinal cord helps brain keep body balanced

Researchers looking for causes of "phantom" pain found a nerve bundle that encodes data for the brain, and helps control the feet for balance, too.

Schmidt: Internet won't go away; Gates: It won't be omnipotent, either

Google chief Eric Schmidt was misquoted as saying the Internet would go away. He said it would embed into everything and become a ubiquitous, universal good. Pretty good, according to Bill Gates, but it still won't cure malaria.

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