Device That Garbles Your Brain Awarded Ig Nobel Prize

Here’s something that doesn’t bother me at all. It’s called the SpeechJammer, a device that, when pointed at someone, will repeat their own words back to them with a short delay, causing a disorienting echo effect that forces the person to just stop talking altogether. It won the 2012 Ig Nobel Prize in Acoustics last week, …

EteRNA: Played By Humans, Scored By Nature

So here’s an interesting little “game” you can play if you ever get bored. It’s called EteRNA, a collection of “puzzles” which task players with designing specific RNA sequences. RNA is, of course, Ribonucleic acid, one of the fundamental building blocks of life. With EteRNA, players work with pairings of the four nucleotides that make …

Scientists Create Autonomous Earthworm Robot

Researchers at MIT, Harvard University, and Seoul National University have successfully engineered an autonomous robot that can crawl across surfaces like an earthworm, which they’ve named Meshworm. They also stepped on it and beat it with a hammer. It…lived. They were able to mimic real worms by creating an “artificial muscle” of nickel and titanium …

The Android of Your Dreams

I’m a big fan of robots. Or, you know, of dismantling them and setting them on fire. I just stumbled upon this video of Tara the Android, though. Perhaps she’ll help me better accept our robot cousins. Turn over a new leaf, that sort thing. Never mind.

Will We Ever Be Attacked By Giant Mutant Ants?

Giant ants. They stand alongside the greats of B-movie cinema: The Megasharks, the giant spiders, the…frogs. In the above trailer from the 1954 movie Them!, we see these monstrosities in action, brought to life with one part movie magic, two parts atomic nightmare. But could these six-legged, gargantuan terrors someday become a reality? Attack Of …

This Crab Logic Gate Will Solve All Your Crab Logic Gate Needs

It’s amazing what kind of weird stuff people think up when they’re bored. And by people, I mean scientists. Over at Kobe University in Japan, for example, a team of computer scientists have constructed a working computer inspired by “the swarming behavior of soldier crabs.” They built a “geometrically constrained environment” and let loose swarms …