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Thinking Cap May Cut Practice Time

Special Feature by Guy Wilkins

Hate playing scales or doing fitness drills? In the not-so-distant future, the hours of repetitive practice necessary to learn a musical instrument, new sport, or dance may be a relic of the past. Lara Boyd, a researcher at the University of British Columbia in Vancouver, Canada, believes a promising new technology called magnetic brain stimulation could cut the practice time required to learn a new motor skill.

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Just Splurt It Out!

ketchup pouringEngineers often seek ways to improve something that really bugs them. For Missouri high school seniors Tyler Richards and Jonathan Thompson, that something was the watery ketchup that first squirts from the bottle – and they designed a device to solve the problem.

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“Science In Fiction” Video Contest

Kavli science video contest Do you love the idea of time travel, cyborgs or other far-fetched technology from fantasy literature and the movies? Today’s scientists and engineers are discovering ways to make these ideas become reality – and you can, too. Check out the Kavli “Science in Fiction” video contest. Entry period runs until March 21, 2014.

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Talk to the Hand

voice synthesizerWhat’s in a voice? A new gesture-to-speech synthesizer developed by researchers at the University of British Columbia adds emotion to words that text-to-speech technologies now voice only in a monotone. It also translates gestures into music.

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Student’s Gel Could Prevent Concussions

Combining nanotechnology with foam, Brigham Young University engineering student Jake Merrell has created a “smart foam” that could be placed inside the helmets of football players to measure the impact of hits to the head, and help prevent concussions.

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