Spain, Future Technologies
Plant roots inspire 3D-printed automotive sensors Soil is much more than just the dirt beneath our feet. Essential for agriculture, a source of undiscovered pharmaceuticals and a filtering system for ecosystems, it’s surprising that the automotive research vehicles, which cruise through air or water, have not yet penetrated the ground.
Lizard skins and bark bugs inspire energy saving materials Biomimicry , also called bionics, uses structures found in nature to solve everyday problems. A well-known example is the Velcro strip , which a Swiss engineer, Georges de Mestral copied from the burdocks that stuck to his dog and clothes on a walk through the fields.
How machines can learn from human behaviour Could a human behaviour simulator be embedded into a robot or online avatar to the point that it’s hard to distinguish between a real person or artificial intelligence? Scientists have been upping the stakes in this “ Turing test ” for years, to the point that human-mimicking programmes are ready to answer tricky questions, assist people with online shopping or be companions.
Science-based civic projects “Are we all on the same page? Singing from the same hymn sheet?” For anyone working with groups of people in policy areas, the answer is nearly always “yes”.
The semiotics of supercomputers Exascale supercomputing refers to super fast computers to be implemented between 2018 and 2020 to analyse massive volumes of data. The downside: they consume vast amounts of energy.