Technology

Paid editors on Wikipedia – should you be worried?

By Kim Osman, PhD Candidate at Queensland University of Technology

Whether you trust it or ignore it, Wikipedia is one of the most popular websites in the world and accessed by millions of people every day. So would you trust it any more (or even less) if you knew people were being paid to contribute content to the encyclopedia?

It’s possible to assess dietary compliance from a blood sample - that is useful in controlled dietary intervention studies investigating the health benefits of specific diets, since such studies have mainly relied on the participants’ self-reported dietary intake, which is often biased, making it more difficult to assess the real health benefits.

(Inside Science TV) – From the classrooms to research facilities a cell phone could morph into a portable science lab.

"If we could use a cellphone as a microscope that would be a very cheap and cost effective way to solve a number of our problems," said Thomas Larson, a mechanical engineering graduate of the University of Washington in Seattle and inventor of the Micro Phone Lens.

The idea came to Larson while he was working in the lab at the University of Washington.

"We’re using microscopes a lot!" said Larson.

By Charis Palmer, The Conversation

Crowdsourcing competitions, popular with companies seeking to tap into groups of knowledge, are often diminished by malicious behaviour, according to a new study.

The research, published today in the Journal of the Royal Society Interface, found the opennesss of crowdsourced competitions, particularly those with a “winner takes all” prize, made them vulnerable to attack.

A newborn screening test for severe combined immunodeficiency (SCID) reliably identifies infants with this life-threatening inherited condition, leading to prompt treatment and high survival rates.

Severe combined immunodeficiency affects approximately 1 in 58,000 newborns, according to the paper, indicating that the disorder is less rare than previously thought. 


There are several security vulnerabilities in full-body backscatter X-ray scanners deployed to U.S. airports between 2009 and 2013.

In laboratory tests, researchers were able to successfully conceal firearms and plastic explosive simulants from the Rapiscan Secure 1000 scanner. The team was also able to modify the scanner operating software so it presents an "all-clear" image to the operator even when contraband was detected. "Frankly, we were shocked by what we found," said J. Alex Halderman, a professor of computer science at the University of Michigan. "A clever attacker can smuggle contraband past the machines using surprisingly low-tech techniques."


If you were a 1990s protester in a developed nation, you probably hate the idea of globalization, though democratization of culture and wealth have clearly been very good things. Globalization used to be controversial but by now no one sentient really thinks cultures that condone rape and stoning of women should be preserved.

Cloud computing will take that globalization to the next level, because it is a key enhancer of innovation and economic development - and it gives groups without giant budgets for hardware a way to compete, just like food science that lets crops grow in inhospitable climes saves lives.

A new implantable tissue scaffold coated has been created, with bone growth factors that are released slowly over a few weeks. When applied to bone injuries or defects, this coated scaffold induces the body to rapidly form new bone that looks and behaves just like the original tissue.


By Ladan Cockshut, Durham University

A few days ago, I was an astrophysicist and contributed to a research project by organizing sunspot images in order of complexity. After I’d had enough of that, I became a biochemist and worked late into the night on a project creating synthetic RNA.

Actually, I am not a scientist. Before yesterday I hadn’t really studied sunspots and I am still not entirely sure what RNA does. And yet, I was welcomed by the research team. It turns out they didn’t care about my lack of scientific knowledge. What they needed were my visual and gaming skills.

The world market for diagnostics was about $54.6 billion in 2013 and is expected to grow 4% annually, to $65 billion, by 2018.

That figure in Kalorama's biennial survey of the IVD industry, The Worldwide Market for In Vitro Diagnostic Tests, 9th Edition, includes all laboratory and hospital-based products, and OTC product sales. New technology is leading the charge, according to Kalorama. Diagnostic laboratory technology has changed dramatically due to the publication of the human genome project and advances in functional genomics, bioinformatics, miniaturization and microelectronics.