World's smallest car 'fuels' nanotech advance
November 18th, 2011
04:16 PM ET

World's smallest car 'fuels' nanotech advance

By Matthew Knight, CNN

London (CNN) - A tiny nano-sized car which can propel itself forward in response to electrical pulses has been created by scientists in the Netherlands.

The electric-powered vehicle, which is the size of a single molecule, has a chassis and four paddle-shaped wheels and is roughly one-billionth the size of a traditional hatchback car.

Its maiden journey wasn't exactly epic - six nanometers - and its fuel-efficiency wasn't world-beating either, needing a jolt of 500 millivolts every half revolution of its wheels.

Read the full story at CNN.com

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Filed under: Innovation • Science • Tech
November 18th, 2011
04:12 PM ET

Saving lives in Uganda, Haiti and Kenya with recycled hotel soap

By John D. Sutter, CNN

Check out this recent story on a CNN Heroes candidate, Derreck Kayongo.

Kayongo's non-profit, the Global Soap Project, recycles half-used soap from hotels and makes it into new soap that can be used in the developing world, where, he says, the high costs of soap prohibit healthy sanitation.

In essence, Kayongo's thesis is this: Soap can save lives. FULL POST

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Filed under: Innovation • Social change • Thinkers • World
Programming an 'operating system' for cells
November 18th, 2011
04:10 PM ET

Programming an 'operating system' for cells

By Lara Farrar, CNN

No doubt, it is difficult to design operating systems for computers that simultaneously run numerous applications, while managing interactions between multiple types of hardware and responding to a multitude of commands from users.

Now imagine trying to design a similar operating system not for a laptop, a PC or even a smartphone, but rather for something much, much tinier - a living biological cell.

This is exactly what a group of scientists at the University of Nottingham, in England, will attempt to do as part of a five-year, $1.58 million research project that has been aptly named AudACiOus - which, according to researchers is derived from "towArds a Universal BiologicAl-Cell Operating System" with an extraneous "D" and "U" thrown in.

Read the full story on CNN.com

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Filed under: Innovation • Science • Tech
Quiz: The future of exploration on Mars
November 18th, 2011
04:04 PM ET

Quiz: The future of exploration on Mars

With NASA's "Curiosity" rover due to launch on November 25, Mars exploration is once again on the space agenda.

The rover will search for signs that Mars is, or ever was, able to support microbial life. But even as the Science Laboratory is being prepared for launch, more missions to the Red Planet are being planned and new technologies are being researched that will allow ever more information about Mars to be collected.

Take this quiz and find out how much you know about the future of Mars exploration.

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Filed under: Science • Tech
November 18th, 2011
01:45 PM ET

Meet a 13-year-old solar panel developer

By John D. Sutter, CNN

Obvious statement: Lots of middle schoolers have been outside.

But I'm going to go out on a limb and say that almost none of them look up at the trees, see the Fibonacci Sequence in the branches, and use that insight to develop new and more-efficient methods of arranging solar panels.

Stuff like that only happens to Aidan Dwyer. FULL POST

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Filed under: Innovation • Science • Tech • Thinkers
November 18th, 2011
07:00 AM ET

The Next List: Christopher Brosius on the artful way to wear a scent

From Christopher Brosius' point of view, far too many people grew up living by this smelly mantra:

"A woman is never fully dressed unless she's wearing perfume."

That edict from Chanel, he said, has created a lot of people "who wind up smelling the worst in public," said Brosius, one of the world's most famous perfume makers and the subject of this week's episode of "The Next List," which airs on CNN this Sunday at 2 p.m. ET. FULL POST

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Filed under: Innovation • The Next List • Thinkers • Video