Tuesday, June 20, 2006

Science Links

Plenty of cool stuff today.

First, from Scott Ray, this news (thanks Engadget):
Researchers at Carnegie Mellon University appear to have solved a problem long thought impossible, teaching computers to turn static 2D images into 3D models.

Beyond all the cool, totally useful applications for this in the future, think about what it could do for gaming. Cityscapes, battlefields, golf courses--the potential is fantastic. And think about how much development time could be saved if 2D photographs could be imported as 3D environments.

Here's the link.

Next, from Rhett Dornbach-Bender, a link to IBM's announcement of a silicon germanium (SiGe) chip running at 500GHz:
IBM (Armonk, N.Y.) and Georgia Tech (Atlanta) claimed that they have demonstrated the first silicon-based chip capable of operating at frequencies above 500 GHz by cryogenically "freezing" the circuit to minus 451 degrees Fahrenheit (4.5 Kelvins).

...The chips used in the research are from a prototype fourth-generation SiGe technology fabricated by IBM on 200-mm wafers. At room temperature, the circuits operated at approximately 350 GHz.

350GHz at room temperature! Here's the EE Times story.

Geoff Engelstein sent in a link to the discovery of the ancestor of the modern bird:
WASHINGTON - The first detailed look at the ancestor of modern birds — a grebe-like waterbird that would look normal even today — was shown off Thursday by scientists who discovered fossil remains in a remote lake bed in China.

..."Most of the ancestors of birds from the age of dinosaurs are members of groups that died out and left no modern descendants. But Gansus led to modern birds, so it's a link between primitive birds and those we see today," Lamanna said.
Previously there was a gap between ancient and modern species of birds, and "Gansus fits perfectly into this gap," added Jerald D. Harris of Dixie State College in Utah.

Here's a link to the full story.

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