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Plant Breeders Release First ‘Open Source Seeds’

At an event on the campus of the University of Wisconsin, Madison, backers of the new Open Source Seed Initiative will pass out 29 new varieties of 14 different crops, including carrots, kale, broccoli and quinoa. Anyone receiving the seeds must pledge not to restrict their use by means of patents, licenses or any other kind of intellectual property. In fact, any future plant that’s derived from these open source seeds also has to remain freely available as well.
http://www.npr.org/blogs/thesalt/2014/04/17/303772556/plant-breeders-release-first-open-source-seeds

To implement a collision-based computer using DNA objects,
we used DNA origami nanorobots as described previously. These robots are controlled by a gate that opens in response to a correct combination of protein cues, which bind a sensing strand, typically an aptamer, and displace it from its complementary strand. Upon displacing the gate strands from each other, the robot undergoes a drastic conformational shift, exposing the payload inside it and making it available to engage target cells

"Noah" screening cancelled due to flooding

"Noah" screening cancelled due to flooding

A Broken Place: The Spectacular Failure Of The Startup That Was Going To Change The World

Better Place was born to be revolutionary, the epitome of the kind of world-changing ambition that routinely gets celebrated. Founder Shai Agassi, a serial entrepreneur turned rising star at German software giant SAP, conceived Better Place “on a Davos afternoon” in 2005 when he asked himself, “How would you run a whole country without oil?” Four years later, onstage at the TED conference, Agassi, a proud Israeli with a bit of a Steve Jobs complex, wore a black turtleneck and promised, with the confidence of a man who has known the future for some time but has only recently decided to share his findings, that he would sell millions of electric vehicles in his home country and around the world. He implied that converting to electric cars was the moral equivalent of the abolition of human slavery and that it would usher in a new Industrial Revolution.
http://www.fastcompany.com/3028159/a-broken-place-better-place/

Surveillance is the Business Model of the Internet

Data is currency, and consumers are willing to hand over their information in exchange for “free or convenience,” Schneier said. Companies such as Facebook and Google want the data so that they can sell more stuff. Users hand it over to play games, to get email, or some other benefit. “I like to think of this as a feudal model. At a most fundamental model, we are tenant farming for companies like Google. We are on their land producing data,” he said. By handing the data over, users have an expectation of trust that Google, Facebook, and other data brokers will do the right thing with the personal data. However, this becomes a power play when governments get involved. Governments don’t need to collect the data themselves when corporations are already doing it. “The NSA woke up and said ‘Corporations are spying on the Internet, let’s get ourselves a copy,’” Schneier said. Most NSA surveillance “piggybacks” what the companies are already doing, he said.
http://www.securityweek.com/surveillance-business-model-internet-bruce-schneier

How To Waste Time Properly

Brent Coker, who studies online behavior at the University of Melbourne in Australia, found that people who engage in “workplace Internet leisure browsing” are about 9 percent more productive than those who don’t. Last year, Jonathan Schooler, a psychology professor at the University of California, Santa Barbara published with his doctoral student Benjamin Baird a study called Inspired by Distraction. It concluded that “engaging in simple external tasks that allow the mind to wander may facilitate creative problem solving.”
http://nautil.us/issue/7/waste/how-to-waste-time-properly