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Last update: 2013-07-01

Spectrum: Cars of the future, female condoms and STIs

2013-07-01 :: DW.DE | Deutsche Welle
Length: 29s

On this show, Spectrum tackles the demise of Google Reader, the increasing number of gonorrhea cases in Germany and how female condoms are being promoted to help fight HIV/AIDS in Mozambique.…

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Spectrum: The human immune system continues to fascinate

2013-06-24 :: DW.DE | Deutsche Welle
Length: 29s

On this special edition of Spectrum, we go on a little tour of the human immune system with six scientists who share their expertise on an aspect of our bodies that is essential to the quality of our lives everyday.…

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Spectrum: Caught in the panoramic prism

2013-06-17 :: DW.DE | Deutsche Welle
Length: 29s

You might think you can take panoramic shots on your phone, but you ain't seen nothing yet... until you meet Prague's 360 Cities, that is. And: how do you feel being caught in an American spy prism?…

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Spectrum: Notes on sound

2013-06-10 :: DW.DE | Deutsche Welle
Length: 29s

On a serious note, we look at moves to block pornography on the Net and track people who source images of child sex abuse. Then, on a lighter note, we get into the SoundPrism app, and hear from electro quartet Ghost Capsules on music tech.…

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Spectrum: Come Techether

2013-06-03 :: DW.DE | Deutsche Welle
Length: 29s

Find out about the international science facility that will bring Israel and Iran together - if only it gets built. Then, the ethics of testing new drugs on people in poor countries. And Yahoo's woes: 'I've got Google, so what more do I want?'…

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Spectrum: High frequency treatments

2013-05-27 :: DW.DE | Deutsche Welle
Length: 29s

Waking up dormant HIV cells 30 years after the virus was detected… The low cost rotavirus vaccine that could save lives and start a homegrown pharma industry in India... And HFT… HF-what? Okay, then… high frequency trading and social media.…

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Spectrum: A digital demonstration

2013-05-20 :: DW.DE | Deutsche Welle
Length: 29s

What do we want? The right to return unwanted apps! When do we want it... as soon as we can download it! Plus: new disorders and the new "psychiatrists' Bible," cloned cells, e-cigarettes and life online in Russia.…

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Spectrum: Mad for mobile music apps

2013-05-13 :: DW.DE | Deutsche Welle
Length: 29s

This week we're not so much "deep and dirty" in the worlds of science and technology as we are lounging it in a miasma of repetitive beats and bleeps - a special edition on how mobile apps are changing the way we make music.…

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Spectrum: Lighting up knockout mice

2013-05-06 :: DW.DE | Deutsche Welle
Length: 29s

Visit the Czech lab where scientists are lighting up "knockout" mice in the name of gene research. Find out why "tweet now, think later" can land you in prison. And sit back and enjoy the science of coffee in Italy.…

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Spectrum: How to buy tweets and influence people

2013-04-22 :: DW.DE | Deutsche Welle
Length: 29s

So we've all downloaded Twitter's #music app... or not... but did you spot the paid for tweets? Were they paid for? Also, get tips on how to cross the digital divide. And Google taps white space in South Africa to expand Internet coverage.…

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Spectrum: Games, games, glorious… HTML5?

2013-04-15 :: DW.DE | Deutsche Welle
Length: 29s

As we enter the new age of HTML5, why are some games developers turning away from the language of the Web? Where are Europe's tech micro-multinationals? And get inside your digital memory.…

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Spectrum: Virtual currency bubble

2013-04-08 :: DW.DE | Deutsche Welle
Length: 29s

Even in beta, the virtual currency Bitcoin is stuck in an experimental bubble, but its supporters still say it's the currency of the future. Also, a new bird flu in China, kickstarting the EU's tech startup culture, and the landmine detector that harnesses the wind.…

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Spectrum: Fair play technology

2013-04-01 :: DW.DE | Deutsche Welle
Length: 29s

We've got goal line technology, the European Space Agency's Drones App... and we get into digital and analog music - learn how to build a DIY synth and hear from legendary inventor and WaveGenerator app maker, Wolfgang Palm.…

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Spectrum: Fight for your right to IT

2013-03-25 :: DW.DE | Deutsche Welle
Length: 29s

Kapil Sibal, the Indian minister of communications and IT, tells us why it's impossible to govern the Internet, while his and other governments try to do just that. Also, why placebos don't work. And... the Raspberry Pi hits British schools.…

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Spectrum: Cool yer boots

2013-03-18 :: DW.DE | Deutsche Welle
Length: 29s

We cool computers with a special non-conductive liquid and dunk a cell phone or two. We keep track of research cash from international firms. And we get the lowdown on the fat burning properties of Viagra.…

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Spectrum: Need a taxi - get the app!

2013-03-11 :: DW.DE | Deutsche Welle
Length: 29s

Europe's bid to develop science and technology infrastructure in Africa. A taxi apps arms race is brewing. And if you think Australia's safe from soaring rates of vitamin D deficiency, you'd be wrong.…

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Spectrum: Make drugs, not war

2013-03-04 :: DW.DE | Deutsche Welle
Length: 29s

In this special edition of Spectrum, we get deep and dirty with Europe's multi billion euro drive to resuscitate the drugs industry - to keep research going into new drugs and new therapies – with a major push towards collaborative projects into basic science between the public sector and the pharmaceuticals industry in the private sector.…

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Spectrum: Sci-Tech in deep water

2013-02-25 :: DW.DE | Deutsche Welle
Length: 29s

Find out how to help autistic kids improve social interaction skills with virtual objects and a boy called Andy. European data protection agencies take aim at Google... again. And sharks beware, there are scientists about!…

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Spectrum: Be alert and be alarmed!

2013-02-18 :: DW.DE | Deutsche Welle
Length: 29s

As the number of cases of a new - potentially fatal - coronavirus increase, the World Health Organization wants us to be alert to "unusual patterns." Also, meet the people who say Germany's Open Data portal is more like a closed shop.…

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Spectrum: It's an ethical, bionic, pulsating hunk

2013-02-11 :: DW.DE | Deutsche Welle
Length: 29s

Try squaring ethical hacking, cyber security and the law...then shake hands with the one million dollar bionic man, and engage with pulsating, woven, vascular implants in Latvia.…

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Spectrum: Brussels goes bling, bling!

2013-02-04 :: DW.DE | Deutsche Welle
Length: 29s

Science research is all about the billions in Brussels - a billion here, a billion there. But will member states pay up to make the Horizon 2020 fund 80 billion strong? Find out about future TV, and why your penis (if you have one) is like a canary in a coal mine.…

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Spectrum: Bendable future

2013-01-28 :: DW.DE | Deutsche Welle
Length: 29s

We've got bendable phones, a little known revolutionary material called graphene, Mozilla's mobile OS, Spanish tech innovators Geeksphone… and a forensic pathologist wielding a drill.…

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Spectrum: Last gasp of the graph

2013-01-21 :: DW.DE | Deutsche Welle
Length: 29s

It's crunch time - the EU wants companies to report cyber security breaches, but will it help? We're also delving into the problem with Facebook's Graph Search. And learn how scientists have got HIV to attack itself.…

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Spectrum: Tracking… and transport technology

2013-01-14 :: DW.DE | Deutsche Welle
Length: 29s

Debate rages in the UK over how to track criminal activity online while keeping people's personal data safe. At the same time we track the developments in transportation engineering since 1863… And we keep tabs on startups in Dublin.…

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Spectrum: Science like you never heard it

2012-11-12 :: DW.DE | Deutsche Welle
Length: 29s

We head to Karlsruhe, where science becomes funny at the finals of the science slam in Germany. We also get to hear on why poo is useful for scientists, and we meet the maker movement.…

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Spectrum: 4G, 5G… who can keep count?

2012-11-05 :: DW.DE | Deutsche Welle
Length: 29s

As the "painfully slow" rollout of 4G (LTE) continues its trek across Europe, we head to the UK's 5G Innovation Center, where researchers are working on the next generation of mobile connectivity. And we find out how to start building our own 3D printer.…

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Spectrum: Simulated science with smoke and water

2012-10-29 :: DW.DE | Deutsche Welle
Length: 29s

Find out about a new, quick and cheap, nanotech test to diagnose HIV, concerns about pro-smoking apps on the Apple and Android platforms, and the new software that makes eye control possible on mobile devices.…

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Spectrum: The drugs industry don't work

2012-10-22 :: DW.DE | Deutsche Welle
Length: 29s

We head to the patent cliff to see how the international pharmaceuticals industry can stop the drop in profits and keep investing in new research with pre-competitive science. And hear from the Austrian artists calling for a digital tax on storage devices.…

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Whatsapp killed the SMS star

2012-10-17 :: DW.DE | Deutsche Welle
Length: 29s

Social messaging is killing SMS and we're wondering what the mobile network providers can do to fight back. We also go street with the Rio gun detector. And we ask whether you could survive without your mobile.…

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Spectrum: Whatsapp killed the SMS star

2012-10-15 :: DW.DE | Deutsche Welle
Length: 29s

Social messaging is killing SMS and we're wondering what the mobile network providers can do to fight back. We also go street with the Rio gun detector. And to knock it off, we ask whether you could survive without your mobile. Produced and presented by Zulfikar Abbany Remote African heartbeat appIt's not always easy for pregnant women in Uganda to monitor their baby's development in the womb. But software developers in the east African country are designing an app that can measure an unborn child's heart rate. It's an advance remote prenatal health. Report: Guilherme Correia da Silva Call for blood minerals banJustin Nkunzi Baciyunjuze, co-author of a report called "Congo: a balance of violence," is calling on imports of "blood minerals" to be banned. He wants people to know where the raw materials that are used in mobile phone production came from. Report: Rebecca Hillauer / Kathleen Schuster Social messaging on the prowlMore and more of us are migrating from SMS to social messaging, with services like Whatsapp taking the lead. Neha Dharia, a consumer telecommunications analyst with Ovum, says the telecommunications industry will lose $23 billion this year alone. Interview: Zulfikar Abbany Rio gun detector trialRio de Janeiro is stepping up security ahead of two major events it plans to hold - the 2014 World Cup and 2016 Olympic Games. The latest step is the adoption of American technology that detects gunfire and sends alerts to the nearest police station. Report: Sam Cowie, Rio de Janeiro Alone without a phoneWe have so many communication options today - email, Facebook, Twitter, Skype - in addition to the old landline. But we do almost everything on our phones. Could you survive without yours? Report: Cinnamon Nippard, Berlin…

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Spectrum: Whatsapp killed the SMS star

2012-10-15 :: DW.DE | Deutsche Welle
Length: 29s

Social messaging is killing SMS and we're wondering what the mobile network providers can do to fight back. We also go street with the Rio gun detector. And to knock it off, we ask whether you could survive without your mobile.…

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Spectrum: You're just going to have to accept it!

2012-10-08 :: DW.DE | Deutsche Welle
Length: 29s

European Commissioner Máire Geoghegan-Quinn tells us why traditional publishers of scientific research are just going to have to accept Open Access, your freedoms on the Net under threat, and senior citizens go all Sci-Fi with the SmartSeniors Project. Produced and presented by Zulfikar Abbany Surgical tools in outer spaceUS biomedical engineers are developing surgical tools that could be used for future expeditionary spaceflights to the moon, an asteroid or even Mars. They have just tested their system on zero gravity flights over Texas. Report: Laura Postma, Pittsburgh Open Access is the 'default'The European Commissioner for Research, Innovation and Science, Máire Geoghegan-Quinn, says Open Access can and will be done. Geoghegan-Quinn has just held talks with major publishers of research journals and says they know it's time to change. Interview: Zulfikar Abbany Your Net freedoms under threatChina and Iran are no longer the only examples of internet censorship. More and more of the information that we think of as being 'unlimited' on the web is restricted and some say censorship is an international battle that will determine the future of the web. Report: Monika Griebeler / Jared Reed Get smart, seniors!The aging society is seen as a growing opportunity for technology businesses. The SmartSenior Initiative has designed new health gadgets to help senior citizens in the home with motion sensors, high-speed Internet and a data hub to aid remote diagnosis. Report: Cinnamon Nippard, Berlin…

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Spectrum: You're just going to have to accept it!

2012-10-08 :: DW.DE | Deutsche Welle
Length: 29s

European Commissioner Máire Geoghegan-Quinn tells us why traditional publishers of scientific research are just going to have to accept Open Access, your freedoms on the Net under threat, and senior citizens go all Sci-Fi with the SmartSeniors Project.…

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Spectrum: Little fluffy green clouds

2012-10-01 :: DW.DE | Deutsche Welle
Length: 29s

We get stuck into cloud computing and Iceland - self-professed green hard drive of the world. British author and Man Booker favorite Will Self tells us about his new novel and the 1920s encephalitis lethargica epidemic. And find out why robots should learn like kids. Produced and presented by Zulfikar Abbany Europe's immature CloudThe European Commission has unveiled its long-awaited strategy paper on cloud computing. Neelie Kroes, vice-president for the Digital Agenda, tells us the three-pronged strategy has yet to mature. Interview: Zulfikar Abbany Iceland's green CloudIceland is becoming the home of a new generation of data centers that work exclusively with renewable energy. And they are cooled with local, fresh air. One such example is at a former NATO military base at Keflavik. Report: Alexis Rosenzweig, Keflavik New approach to diabetesSome of the latest research has suggested that diabetes affects at about 300 million people around the world and that that number could reach 400 million by 2030. But researchers are experimenting with new ways to treat the condition. Report: Michael Engel / Neil King A novel sleeping sicknessThe British author Will Self is one of two main favorites for this year's Man Booker literary prize. His latest novel "Umbrella" focuses on the encephalitis lethargica epidemic, commonly known as a sleeping sickness, which emerged after the First World War. Interview: Zulfikar Abbany Robots learning like kidsYou could hardly deny that robots are everywhere these days. But for them to be useful, they still have to be programmed by people. Computer scientists in Germany are looking for ways to teach robots how to teach themselves. Report: Lydia Heller / Jessie Wingard…

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Spectrum: Little fluffy green clouds

2012-10-01 :: DW.DE | Deutsche Welle
Length: 29s

We get stuck into cloud computing and Iceland - self-professed green hard drive of the world. British author and Man Booker favorite Will Self tells us about his new novel and the 1920s encephalitis lethargica epidemic. And find out why robots should learn like kids.…

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Spectrum: From quantum computers to bacterial radio

2012-09-24 :: DW.DE | Deutsche Welle
Length: 29s

We go from a breakthrough in quantum computing to hot debate about three parent IVF in Britain. There's also Minority Report style technology for the operating theater in Portugal, and the man who bears bacterial radio! Produced and presented by Zulfikar Abbany He comes with bacterial radioA man who builds radio receivers from bacteria has to be unusual. And so it is with Joe Davis, an American who merges art and science. Joe has just won a major prize for his Bacterial Radio at one of the world’s top digital arts festivals in Austria. Report: Kerry Skyring, Linz Minority Report for the operating theaterBrain surgeons in Portugal have helped develop software that allows them to consult and manipulate CT scan during surgery without the use of a mouse or a keyboard. The software runs on hardware that's normally used for video games. Report: Guilherme Correia da Silva, Portugal Learning to predicting extreme cold weatherA new computer model called GloSea4 will help forecasters predict extreme weather seasons better than before. Dr Adam Scaife, head of seasonal forecasting at the UK Met Office, says it can simulate sudden stratospheric warmings, which cause the cold. Interview: Zulfikar Abbany The three parent IVF debateFertility researchers in the UK say they can prevent mitochondrial disease in IVF pregnancies. But because it involves both IVF and genes from a third person, the treatment is highly controversial and the researchers are consulting the public. Report: Chiponda Chimbelu Quantum computer breakthrough!Professor Andrew Dzurak of Sydney's University of New South Wales (UNSW) tells us how he and Dr Andrea Morello have created the first working quantum bit in silicon. The breakthrough could radically change data encryption and medicine research. Interview: Zulfikar Abbany…

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Spectrum: From quantum computers to bacterial radio

2012-09-24 :: DW.DE | Deutsche Welle
Length: 29s

We go from a breakthrough in quantum computing to hot debate about three parent IVF in Britain. There's also Minority Report style technology for the operating theater in Portugal, and the man who bears bacterial radio!…

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Spectrum: The uphill struggle of cyber security

2012-09-17 :: DW.DE | Deutsche Welle
Length: 29s

We've been cavorting with the anti-hackers. And we've also been trying to find out whether it's safe to do your mobile banking in public places like the gym, when perhaps you should be keeping more of an eye on the treadmill. Produced and presented by Zulfikar Abbany Co-produced by Chiponda Chimbelu and Naomi Conrad Mobile banking madMicrosoft reports it's found computers installed with malware in the factory - Nitol steals personal online banking details. Meanwhile, a Norton report says one in ten adults have had their smartphones hacked. It's cast a shadow over mobile banking. Report: Naomi Conrad Talking cyber securityDr Sandro Gaycken, author of "Cyberwar" and lecturer at Berlin's Freie Universität, and Thomas Tschersich, cyber security expert at Deutsche Telekom, tell us what they consider the biggest threats and how we should go about dealing with them. Interview: Zulfikar Abbany Cyber security top brassThe line from the top is that we're not doing enough to stop cyber crime, espionage and hacking. An industry-led Cyber Security Summit in Bonn has just met to change that and agree on a joint strategy for self-regulation to improve cyber security. Report: Chiponda Chimbelu…

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Spectrum: The uphill struggle of cyber security

2012-09-17 :: DW.DE | Deutsche Welle
Length: 29s

We've been cavorting with the anti-hackers. And we've also been trying to find out whether it's safe to do your mobile banking in public places like the gym, when perhaps you should be keeping more of an eye on the treadmill.…

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Spectrum: Old dogs and new tricks

2012-09-10 :: DW.DE | Deutsche Welle
Length: 29s

Dylan goes digital to promote his 35th record with an innovative concept called Sound Graffiti - the world's first robotic exoskeleton in daily action - and as we head into autumn, it's time to slurp your last Gelato and learn about the science. Produced and presented by Zulfikar Abbany Tracking music with a digital DylanHe first shocked his fans when he dumped his folk guitar and went electric. Now, Bob Dylan's gone digital. He's teamed up with DJ Roman Grandinetti to use Sound Graffiti to promote his 35th record in our digital world. Report: Chiponda Chimbelu Robotic exoskeleton in actionClaire Lomas was paralyzed from the chest down in a horse riding accident, but earlier this year used the ReWalk robotic exoskeleton to complete the London marathon. John Frijters of Argo Medical Technologies tells us how ReWalk works. Interview: Zulfikar Abbany Piano cracks the paywall conundrumA small startup in Slovakia is expanding massively, having found a way to get readers to pay for content online. It's convinced Slovakian and Slovenian magazines and newspapers to put their premium content behind a common paywall. Poland's next. Report: Andreas Grigo A woman's brain-sex connectionA high-profile activist and feminist talking about neurotransmitters and sex is a person in high demand. And so it was that securing an interview to talk to Naomi Wolf about her new book, Vagina, was a bit of a struggle. Interview: Zulfikar Abbany A dollop of Gelato scienceSo, we've had a last minute surge of sun - but we're definitely getting closer to autumn now. And that means it's time to give up a guilty pleasure of the summer - ice cream. But we can console you with a dollop of Gelato science. Report: Dany Mitzman, Bologna…

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Spectrum: Old dogs and new tricks

2012-09-10 :: DW.DE | Deutsche Welle
Length: 29s

Dylan goes digital to promote his 35th record with an innovative concept called Sound Graffiti - the world's first robotic exoskeleton in daily action - and as we head into autumn, it's time to slurp your last Gelato and learn about the science.…

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Spectrum: Totally dope

2012-09-03 :: DW.DE | Deutsche Welle
Length: 29s

Join us for double-dipping doping - and the little known technique of boosting - at the Paralympics in London, the future of the future at the IFA tech trade fair in Berlin, and the second part in our Grinberg Method special. Produced and presented by Zulfikar Abbany Techno-doping debateWhether it's the Olympics or Paralympics, technology is becoming increasingly important and divisive in athletics. Technology has given rise to what some people call techno-doping. South African runner Oscar Pistorius is at the center of the debate. Report: Ronny Blaschke / Ben Mack / Charlotta Lomas Paralympic 'boosting' trendOfficials at London's Paralympic games are doing what they can to stop athletes cheating. And they're not just testing for the usual banned substances like steroids, but they're also keeping an eye out for a practice known as boosting. Report: Jessie Wingard, London Future 3.0 at IFAThe International Funkaustellung (IFA) in Berlin is one of the world's largest consumer electronics fairs. With more than 1400 exhibitors, there's everything from snazzy headphones and talk of far more futuristic stuff like self-driving cars. Report: Chiponda Chimbelu, Berlin Coughs 'n' sneezesA new study suggests that influenza can be transmitted before symptoms such as coughs and sneezes. The report's co-author Dr Kim Roberts says the findings could have implications for the prevention of seasonal flu epidemics as well as pandemics. Interview: Zulfikar Abbany The Grinberg Method (Part 2)This week, we look at the Grinberg Method and fear. Unlike talking therapies, Grinberg teaches people to recognize how certain events were experienced by their bodies at the time of the event, and how they can respond in a different way now. Report: Cinnamon Nippard, Berlin…

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Spectrum: Totally dope

2012-09-03 :: DW.DE | Deutsche Welle
Length: 29s

Join us for double-dipping doping - and the little known technique of boosting - at the Paralympics in London, the future of the future at the IFA tech trade fair in Berlin, and the second part in our Grinberg Method special.…

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Spectrum: Talking Armstrong and the dark side of gaming

2012-08-27 :: DW.DE | Deutsche Welle
Length: 29s

We remember the first man on the moon, Neil Armstrong, who has died. An Australian police commissioner throws light on the dark side of gaming. And we find out why contemporary pop music's just too loud! Produced and presented by Zulfikar Abbany The incredible Mr ArmstrongThe late Neil Armstrong was the first man to walk on the moon in 1969. The famous images of the landing were provided by Honeysuckle Creek in Australia, where John Saxon was operations supervisor. He says Armstrong was an incredible human being. Interview: Zulfikar Abbany Small games go bigThe games industry has changed as much as gamers themselves. We're almost all at it now - non-stop and everywhere. It's opened up new possibilities for the big publishers as well as some small, independent developers in Europe. Report: Guilherme Correia da Silva Re-wiring minds for violenceOne of Australia's top police officers says violent video games are "re-wiring" people's brains to make violence acceptable. Police Commissioner Andrew Scipione's comments come after three teenagers were stabbed in separate attacks in Sydney. Interview: Zulfikar Abbany The Grinberg Method (Part 1)Our sedentary lives can mean we constantly busy with our minds with emails and calls, but are disconnected from our bodies and don't know how to deal with pain. The Grinberg Method says changing your attitude to pain will help you overcome it. Report: Cinnamon Nippard, Berlin Bring the noise!Being "loud" is relative. But scientists in Spain say they have pinpointed how the sound of pop music has changed over the past fifty years. And by that they mean it's less dynamic and a lot louder. Report: Guy Hedgecoe, Madrid…

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Spectrum: Talking Armstrong and the dark side of gaming

2012-08-27 :: DW.DE | Deutsche Welle
Length: 29s

We remember the first man on the moon, Neil Armstrong, who has died. An Australian police commissioner throws light on the dark side of gaming. And we find out why contemporary pop music's just too loud!…

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Spectrum: Between the sexes in the sciences

2012-08-20 :: DW.DE | Deutsche Welle
Length: 29s

This week's Spectrum is all about girls, girls, girls... but not like the LA band Mötley Crüe would have it. We're all about getting more women into careers in the sciences - from gamers and physicists to coding girl geeks. Produced and presented by Zulfikar Abbany Gaming is a girl thingWomen have jumped right into the gaming industry - and they're wanted. But they're still in a world dominated by men. Games developer Christin Matt is one of them - she's a force to be reckoned with in her chosen career and on the console. Report: Guilherme Correia da Silva, Cologne Lipstick on your lab coatWe first thought of taking an in-depth look at women in the sciences at the end of June when the European Commission launched a campaign to encourage teenage girls to take careers in the STEM fields. The campaign's had its problems. Report: Charlotta Lomas, Bonn Molecular physicist says go!Some countries pride themselves on a reputation for equal opportunities. Others might prefer a more macho style. But what's it like for women in scientific careers in the former communist bloc? It's seen a lot of change but has it seen enough? Report: Rob Cameron, Prague The Second Sexism in scienceThe EC's women in science campaign is aimed at maintaining Europe's global competitiveness. Would affirmative action help? Professor David Benatar, author of "The Second Sexism," gives us his take on (positive) discrimination between the sexes. Interview: Zulfikar Abbany Manchester Girl Geek powerThe Manchester Girl Geeks take a grassroots approach to getting young women and girls interested in the sciences. They run free workshops, stage talks by famous female scientists, and teach computer coding for girls from the age of 11. Report: Lars Bevanger, Manchester…

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Spectrum: Between the sexes in the sciences

2012-08-20 :: DW.DE | Deutsche Welle
Length: 29s

This week's Spectrum is all about girls, girls, girls... but not like the LA band Mötley Crüe would have it. We're all about getting more women into careers in the sciences - from gamers and physicists to coding girl geeks.…

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Spectrum: Cracking code, solar storms and selling cars

2012-08-13 :: DW.DE | Deutsche Welle
Length: 29s

Crack the monsoon source code in India with the help of brand new supercomputer power as the sun heats up for what could be two years of catastrophic coronal mass ejections, and visit the most high-tech car showroom to date. Produced and presented by Zulfikar Abbany The monsoon source codeIndian scientists are working on new computer models that will allow them to better predict monsoons and even crack the monsoon "source code" with supercomputer technology. As a drought looms, farmers urgently need their help. Report: Murali Krishnan, New Delhi Sense and CuriosityThe US isn’t the only country with hardware on Mars. Despite its own budgetary obstacles - Europe's technology and aerospace programs are blazing ahead. Many are on the rover Curiosity and are getting into some hard graft on the Red Planet. Report: Holly Cooper Two sun years of fearSpace weather scientists like Mike Hapgood of the Rutherford Appleton Laboratory warn that as the sun enters the end of an activity cycle in the next two years there's a greater risk of solar storms interfering with power grids and communication on Earth. Interview: Zulfikar Abbany Treating cancer in childrenEvery year in Germany, 2000 children and other young people are diagnosed with cancer. It's a shock for everyone - not least because cancer is totally unpredictable in the young. And the treatment they have to endure is intense and exhausting. Report: Greta Hamann / Andreas Grigo Virtual car showroomTo some, cars are dreams and desires. Now, German maker Audi wants to take things further with a string of hi-tech spaces that allow customers to get interactive with their cars using touchscreens, sounds, smells and virtual tours. Report: Robin Powell, London…

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Spectrum: Cracking code, solar storms and selling cars

2012-08-13 :: DW.DE | Deutsche Welle
Length: 29s

Crack the monsoon source code in India with the help of brand new supercomputer power as the sun heats up for what could be two years of catastrophic coronal mass ejections, and visit the most high-tech car showroom to date.…

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Spectrum: All knocked up for Mars

2012-08-06 :: DW.DE | Deutsche Welle
Length: 29s

As the Mars rover Curiosity lands on the Red Planet to worldwide cheers, we probe data capacity at London 2012, and knock ourselves out with a round of Chessboxing in Berlin. Produced and presented by Zulfikar Abbany Cheers down hereNASA's Mars rover Curiosity has landed on the Red Planet after more than eight months and 350 million miles travelling through space. It's sent the first images back and will now spend one Mars year searching for evidence of life. Report: Holly Cooper at the European Space Agency in Darmstadt Europe vs Facebook locked outIt’s a year since Max Schrems and other Austrian students decided to take on Facebook - alleging the social networking giant was breaking European law by holding onto data that users have deleted. They say they have been shut out of the process. Report: Kerry Skyring, Vienna Data flows in LondonEarly on, spectators at the Olympic Games were asked to avoid 'non-essential' texts and tweets - the huge data demand was interring with TV coverage. But Stuart Newstead, chair of the Olympics Mobile Experience Group, says data is flowing well. Interview: Zulfikar Abbany Tape up 'n' runKinesio Tape - invented 30 years ago in Japan - has become a sporting must-have at the London 2012 Olympics. The tape - as seen on Minxia Wu's back - is said to provide muscle support. But some scientists say Kinesio has no health benefits at all. Report: Jessie Wingard It's a knockout!Chessboxing is a test of the body and the mind. Possibly even an expression of manhood in the 21st Century - a contest that can be won with a knockout or a checkmate. But is it any good for your brain? Report: Cinnamon Nippard, Berlin…

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Spectrum: All knocked up for Mars

2012-08-06 :: DW.DE | Deutsche Welle
Length: 29s

As the Mars rover Curiosity lands on the Red Planet to worldwide cheers, we probe data capacity at London 2012, and knock ourselves out with a round of Chessboxing in Berlin.…

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Spectrum: Postcards from the lab

2012-07-30 :: DW.DE | Deutsche Welle
Length: 29s

Video games go serious to bridge the gap between the market and innovation, French scientists map the DNA of a banana, and we try to track down a pioneering but elusive eye surgeon in Italy. Produced and presented by Zulfikar Abbany The end is nighIt was a conference that straddled both enthusiastic optimism and sobering reality. There's neither a cure nor a vaccine for HIV. But the 19th international AIDS conference in Washington has declared that now is the beginning of the end of the illness. Report: Christina Bergmann, DW Washington correspondent Rising AIDS drugs resistanceA study into the efficacy of AIDS drugs in Africa has found resistance rates are rising - especially in eastern Africa. Dr Ravindra Gupta of University College London says the surveillance of drug resistance should be integrated into treatment programs. Interview: Zulfikar Abbany Video games go seriousSerious Games - that's video games designed as learning tools - are in the experimental phase. But Utrecht University in The Netherlands is using a game called Solar Tycoon to bridge the gap between business and innovation. Report: Laura Postma, Utrecht Mapping banana DNAFrench researchers have sequenced the DNA of a banana. CIRAD's Angélique D'Hont says it's an important step towards understanding the genetics of the crop and strengthening varieties against fungus and pests - but it's not genetic modification! Interview: Zulfikar Abbany Paging Dr PinelliAn Italian doctor says he has pioneered a super-permeating solution of vitamin B2 drops that can treat Keratoconus in just a few minutes. Keratoconus can lead to blindness. But treatments so far have been difficult without removing the epithelium. Report: Dany Mitzman at a train station in northern Italy…

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Spectrum: Postcards from the lab

2012-07-30 :: DW.DE | Deutsche Welle
Length: 29s

Video games go serious to bridge the gap between the market and innovation, French scientists map the DNA of a banana, and we try to track down a pioneering but elusive eye surgeon in Italy.…

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Spectrum: Technology treatment

2012-07-23 :: DW.DE | Deutsche Welle
Length: 29s

Find out how mobile technology can help in the treatment of HIV/AIDS, come with us on a dig at Messel - the pit that brought you copulating turtle fossils, and learn about the world's lightest material - Aerographite. Produced and presented by Zulfikar Abbany Mobile technology to treat HIVAbout 34 million are thought to be living with HIV, the virus that can lead to AIDS. Bobby Jefferson of Futures Group says mobile technology can help stem the transmission of HIV from mothers to their children. Their data tools have been tested in Africa. Interview: Zulfikar Abbany Messel fossil mysteriesThe fossilized remains of turtles having sex made headlines around the world. The turtles are the only known examples of animals with backbones that have been preserved while copulating. They came from a disused quarry called Messel near Frankfurt. Report: Kate Hairsine, Messel near Frankfurt Anti-cyberbullying campaignIt's thought that more and more students are becoming victims of cyberbullying. An EU funded program to combat bullying on the internet is currently being trialed in the German capital, Berlin. Report: Richard Fuchs / Holly Cooper World's lightest materialGerman engineers have discovered the world's lightest material - Aerographite. Professor Karl Schulte of Hamburg University says it's mostly made of air and gets its strength from a three-dimensional carbon network, making it lighter than Styrofoam. Interview: Zulfikar Abbany Bat virus alertVirologists say bats carry more viruses than previously thought - like strains of mumps that can potentially cross to humans. Much like humans, bats often live in dense areas that make it easy for viruses to spread. Report: Sonya Diehn, Bonn…

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Spectrum: Technology treatment

2012-07-23 :: DW.DE | Deutsche Welle
Length: 29s

Find out how mobile technology can help in the treatment of HIV/AIDS, come with us on a dig at Messel - the pit that brought you copulating turtle fossils, and learn about the world's lightest material - Aerographite.…

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Spectrum: The art of apps, madness and PIXAR

2012-07-16 :: DW.DE | Deutsche Welle
Length: 29s

Arty apps at the ArtApp Awards make strange sounds while we get mindful about fanaticism and madness in the Anders Breivik case and then start a popcorn fight as we look back at 25 years of animation technology from PIXAR Studios. Produced and presented by Zulfikar Abbany It makes calls tooSmart phones and tablets have opened up a new world of creativity. Users are composing melodies and sketching paintings. You can combine media with user interaction. Germany's Centre for Media Art celebrates the best with its annual ArtAppAwards. Report: Kate Hairsine, Karlsruhe Fanaticism and madnessAnders Breivik admits killing 77 people in Norway last July, but insists he's sane. Ahead of the first anniversary of the killings, Professor Tom Fahy of King's College London chairs a special debate on whether fanaticism is a form of madness. Interview: Zulfikar Abbany Network for young creativesWe hear a lot about social networks for the all and sundry - but in Amsterdam two young professionals have founded a very specific online network that connects young creative people at the start of their careers with organizations that need their expertise. Report: Charlotta Lomas, Amsterdam Nanocontainer 'golden bullet'Millions of people around the world suffer from illnesses affecting the circulatory system - such as atherosclerosis, a narrowing or hardening of the arteries. Swiss and German researchers say they have developed new nanotechnology for targeted treatment. Report: Sonya Diehn / Greta Hamann PIXAR's animated film historyOver the past 25 years, Pixar Studios have been credited with revolutionizing the world of movie animation, with children's films like Toy Story, Finding Nemo and Cars. We wouldn't have the films if it weren't for the technology – and PIXAR develops a lot of it itself. Report: Jessie Wingard…

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Spectrum: The art of apps, madness and PIXAR

2012-07-16 :: DW.DE | Deutsche Welle
Length: 29s

Arty apps at the ArtApp Awards make strange sounds while we get mindful about fanaticism and madness in the Anders Breivik case and then start a popcorn fight as we look back at 25 years of animation technology from PIXAR Studios.…

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Spectrum: Farming today... and tomorrow

2012-07-09 :: DW.DE | Deutsche Welle
Length: 29s

We're down at the farm - so join us for the UK's first GM trial in a decade, where the battle lines are drawn, jump into aquaponics, and find out about everything you've ever wanted to know but were afraid to ask about the sex life of a cow (or artificial insemination). Produced and presented by Zulfikar Abbany GM tech trial revivalBritain's first open air trial of GM crops in a decade has been the target of protests, vandalism, and even a cyber attack. But some like the writer and environmentalist Mark Lynas say the Rothamsted Research Center trial has been a turning point. Report: Robin Powell, Rothamsted Research Center near London Rooftop aquaponicsIn Berlin, there is a growing trend towards urban farming - from small-scale DIY groups to independent companies utilizing high-tech systems. One such system is aquaponics. It's a sustainable system that combines aquaculture and hydroponics. Report: Cinnamon Nippard, Berlin Sensors - a cow's best friendThe sex life of a cow - it hardly exists. More than 90 percent of all dairy cows in Germany are artificially inseminated. Cows are even being monitored with sensors to measure when they are "in heat" - the farmers and their livestock are embracing technology. Report: Naomi Conrad on the German-Belgian border Koubachi vs. plant killerThe Koubachi app promises that you'll never forget to water, fertilize or mist your plants again! It sounds good, doesn't it? But does it work? We asked our reporter and resident plant killer to give it a go and find out whether you can download green fingers. Report: Charlotta Lomas, plant killer on the run…

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Spectrum: Farming today... and tomorrow

2012-07-09 :: DW.DE | Deutsche Welle
Length: 29s

We're down at the farm - so join us for the UK's first GM trial in a decade, where the battle lines are drawn, jump into aquaponics, and find out about everything you've ever wanted to know but were afraid to ask about the sex life of a cow (or artificial insemination).…

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Spectrum: Big bang expectations

2012-07-02 :: DW.DE | Deutsche Welle
Length: 29s

Join us on the hunt for a fourth neutrino in France, track social media censorship in China, and discover the point at which whales and helicopters meet. Produced and presented by Zulfikar Abbany Looming big bang breakthroughScientists working at the Large Hadron Collider near Geneva are gearing up for a big announcement this week about the elusive, hypothetical Higgs Boson particle. If it exists, it could raise our understanding of the laws of nature. CERN's James Gillies tells us why. Interview: Zulfikar Abbany Nucifer and the fourth neutrinoAs scientists get closer to detecting the Higgs Boson, another particle is also drawing attention - the neutrino. French physicists are using a new device called Nucifer to hunt a fourth neutrino, or ghost particle, which might give us more insight into the dynamics of the universe. Report: Clea Caulcutt, Paris Police lineup on your phoneLondon's Metropolitan Police Force has begun using an app to help it identify criminal suspects. Facewatch ID is a manhunt service for the 21st century. But it has raised the wrong kind of interest in Germany, where it is unlikely to be used because of privacy concerns. Report:Julia Mahncke/ Chiponda Chimbelu Tracking Chinese social censorshipComputer scientists at Hong Kong University say they have developed software to track censored posts on Sina Weibo - China's largest microblogging site. Lead researcher Dr King-wa Fu says users have ways to get around censorship and still talk about sensitive issues. Interview: Zulfikar Abbany Of humpback whales and helicoptersHumpback whales are perfectly streamlined for water. Their pectoral fins have unusual bumps that make them seem out of place. But they have captured the imagination of researchers who are trying to solve one of the biggest problems for helicopter flight - flow disruption. Report: Fabian Schmidt / Neil King…

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Spectrum: Big bang expectations

2012-07-02 :: DW.DE | Deutsche Welle
Length: 29s

Join us on the hunt for a fourth neutrino in France, track social media censorship in China, and discover the point at which whales and helicopters meet.…

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Spectrum: Data portability and the magnetic fields

2012-06-25 :: DW.DE | Deutsche Welle
Length: 29s

The trouble with putting all your data in one basket in the clouds, magnetic emulsions and how to transport medicine or clean up oil with magnetic fields, and getting hands-on with the Guggenheim Lab in Berlin. Produced and presented by Zulfikar Abbany Data in a handbagMany millions of us have hundreds of pictures or documents on Facebook, Twitter, Flickr, Google Docs, and a multitude of other social media sites. Many of these services are so locked into their own systems that they are virtually incompatible with one another. But there is a drive to increase data portability in Europe. Report: Chiponda Chimbelu Magnetic emulsion to the rescueResearchers at Bristol University in the UK say they have created a molecule that can make magnetic emulsions. It could lead to the targeted delivery of medicine, or even help clean up oil spills. Lead author Professor Julian Eastoe says his team's molecule has a real, practical application. Interview: Zulfikar Abbany Color-coded stress appEuropean computer scientists have been working on technology that separates the bad news from the good. The new smart phone app promises to color-code messages to help users manage their stress - especially at work. But there are fears it could actually make you feel worse. Report: Sonya Diehn More women in scienceThe European Commission has launched a three-year campaign to get more young women into careers in science, technology, engineering and math. EU Commissioner for Research and Science, Maire Geoghegan-Quinn, was unavailable when we called, so we spoke to her spokesman, Michael Jennings, instead. Interview: Zulfikar Abbany Roving lab of inspirationThe Guggenheim Lab, which has been touring the world since last August, has alighted on the German capital, Berlin. It's a place for architects, artists, engineers and designers - both men and women - to get together and brainstorm urban development. It's also about inspiring kids. Report: Melanie Sevcenko, Berlin…

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Spectrum: Data portability and the magnetic fields

2012-06-25 :: DW.DE | Deutsche Welle
Length: 29s

The trouble with putting all your data in one basket in the clouds, magnetic emulsions and how to transport medicine or clean up oil with magnetic fields, and getting hands-on with the Guggenheim Lab in Berlin.…

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Spectrum: Digital doormen, diesel and mad soccer maths

2012-06-18 :: DW.DE | Deutsche Welle
Length: 29s

Find out why diesel fumes are as cancerous as asbestos and mustard gas, delve inside Google's deal with French publishers, and as mathematics meets soccer madness, we mark EURO 2012 with a look at the power of binomial probability in penalty shootouts. Produced and presented by Zulfikar Abbany Digital doormen gain dominanceFacebook and Twitter Connect are increasingly being used to access other sites. It means you don’t have to remember a long list of logins. But you're barred from accessing some sites unless you're already friends with the social networking giants. They are the gatekeepers. Report: Chiponda Chimbelu, New York Causal link between diesel and cancerThe International Agency for Research on Cancer says there's a clear causal link between diesel fumes and lung cancer. Diesel is now considered as cancerous as mustard gas, tobacco and asbestos. IARC's Dr Kurt Straif says there needs to be greater regulation. Interview: Zulfikar Abbany Google, French publishers digital dealGoogle has struck a deal with French publishers to digitize and publish out-of-print books on the Internet. It ends a six year legal battle over the fate of thousands of books that are no longer available. They say the deal means forgotten works will get a new life. Report: Clea Caulcutt, Paris Organ donation driveThere are 12,000 patients in Germany waiting for an organ transplant, but an estimated one in five will die before a match is found. Studies suggest most Germans are in favor of organ donation, but only very few sign up for it. The German government wants to change that. Report: Vera Freitag / Sarah Steffen Soccer, stats, and penalty shootoutsAt EURO 2012 this month, it's more than likely that at least one knockout match will go to a penalty shootout. The statistical odds favor the shooter. And it also comes down to a mathematical theory called binomial probability. For most success hinges on the number 75. Report: Diana Fong, Cologne…

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Spectrum: Digital doormen, diesel and mad soccer maths

2012-06-18 :: DW.DE | Deutsche Welle
Length: 29s

Find out why diesel fumes are as cancerous as asbestos and mustard gas, delve inside Google's deal with French publishers, and as mathematics meets soccer madness, we mark EURO 2012 with a look at the power of binomial probability in penalty shootouts.…

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Spectrum: It's a big telescope

2012-06-11 :: DW.DE | Deutsche Welle
Length: 29s

The sky's wide open as Europe's largest telescope, GREGOR, goes on line, scientists in the US sequence the DNA of a human fetus, and a breakthrough in opium research could lead to new treatments for tumors and cancer cells. Produced and presented by Zulfikar Abbany Solar flares up closeEurope's largest solar telescope, GREGOR, has just come on line on Tenerife. It promises to offer some of the most detailed images of solar flares yet. The Leibniz Institute for Astrophysics in Potsdam will help maintain the data pipeline from Tenerife and pass vital information to other institutes around the world. Report: Daniel Bishton, Potsdam Scientists sequence fetus DNAUS scientists at Washington University say they have sequenced the DNA of a human fetus, using a non-invasive method. One of the researchers and associate professor, Dr Jay Shendure, says it will help them get a more precise reading of 3,000 single-gene disorders, including cystic fibrosis and a form of Alzheimer's disease. Interview: Zulfikar Abbany Rapid manufacturing revolutionRapid manufacturing - 3D production methods, involving computer-aided design tools and lasers - is radically changing mechanical engineering. It won't be long now before designers are emailing print specifications for their products to customers and endusers, who will print - or materialize - the products themselves. Report: Fabian Schmidt / Sonya Diehn Non-addictive opium breakthroughOpium has long been used in medicine as a painkiller. It's also the source of the highly-addictive drug, heroin. But UK scientists say they have discovered the secrets of a non-addictive compound in opium called Noscapine. Lead researcher at York University, Professor Ian Graham, says it could help in the treatment of cancer. Interview: Zulfikar Abbany City of start-ups and engineersBerlin has to be one of the trendiest places on earth - for the night life and for its creative, techie, start-up culture. It's one of the reasons why thousands of Europeans and others move to Berlin every year. It was recently ranked 8th in a British education survey and the city's Technical University is attracting future engineers. Report: Melanie Sevcenko, Berlin…

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Spectrum: It's a big telescope

2012-06-11 :: DW.DE | Deutsche Welle
Length: 29s

The sky's wide open as Europe's largest telescope, GREGOR, goes on line, scientists in the US sequence the DNA of a human fetus, and a breakthrough in opium research could lead to new treatments for tumors and cancer cells.…

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Spectrum: Robots, research rows and Other Places

2012-06-04 :: DW.DE | Deutsche Welle
Length: 29s

The market waits for a thought-controlled robotic arm. The Academic Spring blooms as researchers take on the publishers of scientific journals. And we open up the filters on analog synthesis, with Mathew Watson of Other Places. Thought-controlled robotic armsAn experiment presented by science magazine, Nature, involving a paralyzed American woman, who had directed a robotic arm to pick up a cup of coffee with the power of her thoughts has given some a sense of hope. But it could take years for the technology that harnesses brain waves to make it to market. Report: André Leslie, Munich/Paderborn The Academic Spring hits the publishersIt may be a contradiction in terms, but something very dramatic is happening in the world of academic publishing. Around the world, scholars are turning their backs on commercial publishers of scientific journals, and finding new ways to get their research to the public. Some are calling it the Academic Spring. Report: Robin Powell, London Google's copyright woesThe search engine firm Google has repeatedly come under attack by people who say it offers insufficient protection to copyright holders. It now says it wants to publicly document what it's doing to protect their rights. But it also faces accusations of sourcing and presenting articles from news agencies without paying them for the content. Report: Günther Birkenstock / Sarah Steffen It's all in the numbersFrench mathematicians have been analyzing the country’s voting system in the light of the recent presidential election and found that the winner, Francois Hollande, was not actually the preferred choice. And it's all down to the numbers. They are experimenting with alternative voting systems. Report: Clea Caulcutt, Paris Analog synthesis and Other PlacesAnalog synthesis - the science and technology behind analog synthesizers - has shaped the way we hear the world. It's an old technology that's still firmly linked with the future. Mathew Watson is an Australian drummer and producer who's composed an entire album with just one machine, a 1972 EMS Aks synthesizer, and his drum kit. Interview: Zulfikar Abbany…

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Spectrum: Robots, research rows and Other Places

2012-06-04 :: DW.DE | Deutsche Welle
Length: 29s

The market waits for a thought-controlled robotic arm. The Academic Spring blooms as researchers take on the publishers of scientific journals. And we open up the filters on analog synthesis, with Mathew Watson of Other Places.…

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Spectrum: Musical molecules and Open Data

2012-05-28 :: DW.DE | Deutsche Welle
Length: 29s

Experience the Faraday Orchestra and the sound of molecules. Find out why the WHO says there's a looming dementia crisis, discover how open your Open Data is, and get inside Berlin's trial-phase, energy-plus home. Produced and presented by Zulfikar Abbany Rock da molecule!The Vienna-based Faraday Orchestra is a collaboration between two biophysicists and a music producer. But it's a band with a difference - one of the members is a live molecule. And trying to get the molecule to play its part live can be more than difficult. They're putting the experiment back into experiemental music. Report: Sruthi Pinnamaneni, Vienna Looming dementia crisisThe World Health Organization reports that as more people live longer, more people are becoming susceptible to illnesses of aging, most notably dementia. In a report, the WHO and Alzheimer’s Disease International say the number of people living with dementia worldwide will triple by 2050 - and most will be in developing countries. Report: Lisa Schlein, Geneva Keeping Open Data openWe're constantly being told that our access to information is free via the net and that data can be openly collected and shared. But in many cases you have no legal rights to the data that other people, and companies, collect about you. Data management platform Cosm wants to change that. DW speaks to Cosm founder, Usman Haque. Interveiw: Zulfikar Abbany Grand online knitting industryThere's been a huge revival in handmade products, propelled by websites like Etsy, DaWanda, MyOma. A similar, socially-conscious start-up is Grannies Inc. It's an online knitwear company that lets customers design their own beanies and scarves and have them knitted by a granny of their choice. Report: Cinnamon Nippard, Berlin Berlin's energy plus homeNot many people have the opportunity to make all the energy they need for their own home and transport. But for Jörg Welke, it's a dream come true. This year, he and his family are guinea pigs in a social experiment - they are trialing life in a super-efficient house in Berlin that's designed to generate more energy than it consumes. Report: Richard Fuchs / Matt Hermann…

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Spectrum: Musical molecules and Open Data

2012-05-28 :: DW.DE | Deutsche Welle
Length: 29s

Experience the Faraday Orchestra and the sound of molecules. Find out why the WHO says there's a looming dementia crisis, discover how open your Open Data is, and get inside Berlin's trial-phase, energy-plus home.…

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Spectrum: The future is loud and paper-thin

2012-05-21 :: DW.DE | Deutsche Welle
Length: 5s

Listen to the paper-thin loudspeakers that may soon be broadcasting adverts from milk cartons. Find out why too much fructose is bad for the brain and can make you stupid. And discover why mercury - the stuff that's helping to light our way with energy-saving bulbs - is so hazardous and needs to be recycled properly. Produced and presented by Zulfikar Abbany The future is loud and paper-thinScientists at Chemnitz Technical University, Germany, say they have developed the first set of paper thin loudspeakers. Using traditional printing techniques to layer a number of polymers on top of each other, the new speakers function with piezoelectric technology - rather than the traditional magnet and cone method we see in most normal loudspeakers. Report: André Leslie, Düsseldorf Sugar is making you stupidWe tend to think that sugar is only bad for our bodies. But neuroscientists at UCLA's David Geffen School of Medicine say a steady diet of sugar will also slow your brain - and perhaps even kill off your memories. The lead author of the UCLA team, Professor Fernando Gomez-Pinilla, says sugars can disrupt communication between brain cells, hampering the ability to think clearly, learn and remember. Interview: Zulfikar Abbany Virtual worlds made realComputer games are becoming increasingly important, especially in the lives of young people. And those of us adults who don't want to grow up... rightly, so. But many adults do often feel left out, and the German Federal Agency for Civic Education is hoping to change that with a series of workshops. It wants to familiarize parents and teachers with the virtual worlds in which their children play. Report: Julian Bohne, Hamburg The hazards of mercuryMercury is used in masses of every day products - and left abandoned in many others. The toxic heavy metal is used in energy-saving bulbs, emitted as a gas from power plants and incinerators as industrial waste. Mercury can also find its way into humans via the food cycle. The European Union now wants to replace mercury with non-toxic substances. But it's not as easy as that. Report: Fabian Schmidt / John Blau Facial recognition flashbackSocial networks have made it harder for many to live private lives. Depending on how savvy you are with your privacy settings, anybody can read whatever you've revealed. You've probably also provided a whole load of facial recognition data, which can be extracted from your photos. The multimedia artist Adam Harvey has come up with some practical solutions. Report: Kateri Jochum, New York…

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Spectrum: The future is loud and paper-thin

2012-05-21 :: DW.DE | Deutsche Welle
Length: 5s

Listen to the paper-thin loudspeakers that may soon be broadcasting adverts from milk cartons. Find out why too much fructose is bad for the brain and can make you stupid. And discover why mercury - the stuff that's helping to light our way with energy-saving bulbs - is so hazardous and needs to be recycled properly.…

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Spectrum: A storm in Twittersphere

2012-05-14 :: DW.DE | Deutsche Welle
Length: 29s

A veritable S-Storm continues over a spoof Twitter account, parodying the German chancellor, researchers in London say they have found a link between psychopathy and abnormalities in the brain, and we hear from NEXT Berlin. Produced and presented by Zulfikar Abbany Fake Merkel in Twitter Schock!There's been a bit of a storm online this past week, following the worldwide shutdown - and then re-opening - of a popular Twitter account called Angela_D_Merkel (after our dear leader, the German Chancellor of course). The account had over 26,000 followers and was well known for dry one-liners about European affairs. It's now been forced to become @Queen_Europe but will it last? Report: André Leslie, Bonn Psychopaths found to be abnormalScientists at King's College London's Institute of Psychiatry say they have the strongest evidence yet to prove that psychopathy is linked to specific abnormalities in the brain. The researchers used MRI to scan the brains of 44 violent male offenders for the study, which is the first of its kind and could have implications for the law and medicine. DW speaks to lead author Dr Nigel Blackwood. Interview: Zulfikar Abbany Age almost irrelevant in child birthThe last few years have shown some quite exciting developments in prenatal care - including 4D Ultrasound machines. Having a baby has never been safer in Europe and other so-called rich parts of the world. And even things that may cause complications - like a mother's age - can be dealt with successfully in most cases. In fact, age, is almost becoming irrelevant. Report: Nicole Goebel, Bonn Who’s NEXT in the start-up track?It's perhaps no surprise that Berlin is being touted as Europe's Silicon Valley, with some of the hottest sites and start-ups, like Soundcloud, Amen and Spreadshirt, all in the city. It's also just played host to NEXT Berlin - Europe's leading digital technology conference - which included a track for Start-Ups to pitch to an international jury. Of 100 applicants, 12 made it through to the finals. Report: Cinnamon Nippard, Berlin A stress test for treesWe use wood for just about everything, but as climate changes, so do habitats for timber forests. In the first project of its kind, a scheme called Reinforce is trying to discover which trees are going to provide Europe with a steady supply of timber this century. Report: Robin Powell, Westonbirt, UK…

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Spectrum: A storm in Twittersphere

2012-05-14 :: DW.DE | Deutsche Welle
Length: 29s

A veritable S-Storm continues over a spoof Twitter account, parodying the German chancellor, researchers in London say they have found a link between psychopathy and abnormalities in the brain, and we hear from NEXT Berlin.…

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Spectrum: A new republica

2012-05-07 :: DW.DE | Deutsche Welle
Length: 29s

Get psyched with the bloggers at this year's re:publica in Berlin, find out why the Internet of Things is a vision of the future that might be the only way to preserve the way we've been living in the past, and meet the researchers in the UK who have plumbed the depths of London's underground network for a major study into data mining. Produced and presented by Zulfikar Abbany Ethiopian bloggers fear state crackdownThe three day international bloggers' convention, re:publica, has grown to be one of the most important events in the blogging calendar - it's a chance for think-tankers, activists and people from more traditional media to talk about current political situations. And a major focus at this year’s re:publica was internet censorship and the events in the Middle East and Africa. Report: Naomi Conrad, Berlin The Internet of Things and sustainabilityYou may well have heard of the Internet of Things, but some say there's very little actual debate about what it will mean when your fridge starts ordering milk without your knowing it, or your clothes send out positioning signals to a server, somewhere. Many are against the idea. But Martin Spindler is an advocate, who appeared at re:publica 2012 and has an idea why the IoT scares so many people. Interview: Zulfikar Abbany Mining data on the London undergroundThe era of "big data" has transformed the way businesses gather information about customers, the way governments assess the needs of citizens, and led to new areas of scientific research. In the first study of its kind, researchers have looked at data generated by commuters on the London underground, which they hope it will tell us new things about the city, its residents, and their habits. Report: Robin Powell, London Nuclear nomads stuck in a French rutWhile Japan has now shut down its last remaining nuclear reactor, France remains among a handful of countries sticking with the industry. But there's a critical movement within, including the so-called nuclear nomads - the contractors who work in radioactive areas of nuclear plants. Some nuclear nomads are even suing over alleged workplace violations. Report: Suzanne Krause and Dagmar Breitenbach…

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Spectrum: A new republica

2012-05-07 :: DW.DE | Deutsche Welle
Length: 29s

Get psyched with the bloggers at this year's re:publica in Berlin, find out why the Internet of Things is a vision of the future that might be the only way to preserve the way we've been living in the past, and meet the researchers in the UK who have plumbed the depths of London's underground network for a major study into data mining.…

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Spectrum: Of mosquitos and other bugs

2012-04-30 :: DW.DE | Deutsche Welle
Length: 29s

In this week's edition of Spectrum we hear about the fight against malaria, how bugs on your number plate can help science, why press freedom in Turkey is under threat and why Africa has more water reserves than we think Produced and hosted by Nicole Goebel The fight against malariaMalaria still kills about a million people every year in tropical regions around the world. Marking World Malaria Day, we take a look at new approaches for treating the disease. Author: Fabian Schmidt, presented in English by Sonya Diehn Bugs on number plates help scientistsOver 130 billion bugs end up splattered all over cars every year - and that's only in the Netherlands. Dutch scientists now ask you to count the bugs on your license plate after a drive to help them protect biodiversity. Author: Laura Postma, Wageningen, the Netherlands Africa has bigger water reserves than we thoughtAcross the globe, one in six people don't have access to clean drinking water. Many of those are in Africa. But the continent actually sits on vast reservoirs of groundwater. Scientists from the UK have now, for the first time, put together a map of exactly where these reservoirs are. DW spoke to Alan MacDonald, Principal Hydrogeologist at the British Geological Survey, who also led the project. Interview: Nicole Goebel Turks turn to online mediaWith over a hundred journalists in jail, Turkey has an unenviable record on press freedom. But at the same time the country has taken to social media like fish to water. Just under half the country is on Facebook for example, ranking it fourth in the world. Twitter is also hugely popular there. While few speak of outright censorship, many feel that mainstream media often don't tell the full story. Author: Dorian Jones, Istanbul…

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Spectrum: Of mosquitos and other bugs

2012-04-30 :: DW.DE | Deutsche Welle
Length: 29s

In this week's edition of Spectrum we hear about the fight against malaria, how bugs on your number plate can help science, why press freedom in Turkey is under threat and why Africa has more water reserves than we think…

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Spectrum: Of fungi, mushroom pickers and new ways to detect breast cancer

2012-04-23 :: DW.DE | Deutsche Welle
Length: 29s

In this episode of Spectrum, we hear from a young entrepreneur whose business idea came from the desire to find mushrooms for his risotto. We also hear why fungi are not just irksome organisms, the latest treatments for Parkinson's and why sea lions are under threat in the Galapagos islands. Produced and hosted by Nicole Goebel Sea lions in the GalapagosThe Galapagos islands are still a hive of activity for scientists, as it's home to so many different species. Arguably the cutest of those are the sea lions and they're under threat. Report by: Sandy Hausman World's largest Parkinson's study launched in the UKThe causes of Parkinson's Disease are still largely unknown. The University of Glasgow and Parkinson's UK are launching a major study, hoping to find enough volunteers to find so-called biomarkers to get to the bottom of what causes the disease. DW interviewed Dr. Donald Grosset, who leads the study. Interview: Nicole Goebel Blind help detect breast cancerDr. Frank Hoffmann from Duisburg had the idea of using blind people to carry out breast examinations. Their keen sense of touch makes them particularly suitable. Since 2006, Hoffman has been running the project "Discovering Hands," which gives the blind new job prospects as "medical touch examiners. Report by Christina Beyert, presented in English by Sonya Diehn Young Berlin entrepreneur launches activity network GidsyEdial Dekker wanted to go mushroom picking in Berlin, but couldn't find anyone to do it with. So he founded Gidsy, an online portal for activities. DW went to see him and his brother in Berlin. Report by Jonathan Gifford German scientists use fungi to clean soil, waterFungi may get a bad rap, but some scientists love them for their cleaning power. At least those that normally destroy wood for a living. They have a special enzyme that can help clean soil and water. Report by Fabian Schmidt, presented in English by Andrew Bowen…

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Spectrum: Of fungi, mushroom pickers and new ways to detect breast cancer

2012-04-23 :: DW.DE | Deutsche Welle
Length: 29s

In this episode of Spectrum, we hear from a young entrepreneur whose business idea came from the desire to find mushrooms for his risotto. We also hear why fungi are not just irksome organisms, the latest treatments for Parkinson's and why sea lions are under threat in the Galapagos islands.…

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Spectrum: Where science meets art

2012-04-16 :: DW.DE | Deutsche Welle
Length: 29s

In this week's edition, we meet the first artist in residence at CERN, we'll tell you how leftover fruit and veg turns into biofuel in Suttgart, we'll hear why biometric passports cause ructions in France and why fingerprints can do more than just identify people. Produced and hosted by: Nicole Goebel French biometric passport database causes concernThe French government is creating a massive database of biometric passport holders, potentially, all French citizens could appear on it. Rights groups say the initiative clearly infringes on civil liberties and want the project scrapped. France’s highest court banned police from using the database but it stopped short of having the file destroyed Author: Clea Caulcutt, Paris Sweat test takes fingerprints to a new levelUK scientists, working with Norwich firm Intelligent Fingerprinting, have developed a handheld device that can test fingerprints for drug use. The test can even work on old fingerprints. DW spoke to Paul Yates of Intelligent Fingerprinting. Interview: Nicole Goebel First resident artist sets up shop at CERNGerman artist Julius von Bismarck is the first artist in residence at CERN, also home to the famous Large Hadron Collider. For two months, he’ll be working alongside the world’s top particle physicists and his mentor, American theoretical physicist, James Wells. Author: Dany Mitzman, Geneva Produce turns into biofuel at Stuttgart marketStuttgart's large fruit and vegetable wholesale market will soon turn some of its leftover produce into natural gas that can be used to fill up cars at a service station next door to the gas plant. Author: Kate Hairsine, Stuttgart…

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Spectrum: Where science meets art

2012-04-16 :: DW.DE | Deutsche Welle
Length: 29s

In this week's edition, we meet the first artist in residence at CERN, we'll tell you how leftover fruit and veg turns into biofuel in Suttgart, we'll hear why biometric passports cause ructions in France and why fingerprints can do more than just identify people.…

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Spectrum: Gaming windfall

2012-04-09 :: DW.DE | Deutsche Welle
Length: 29s

Britain's games industry is over the moon about a new tax cut, and Europe gets to grips with electronic waste, while voting gets underway in DW's blog awards, the BOBs.…

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Spectrum: Sign language-to-text smartphone ap shapes new technological era for hearing impaired

2012-04-02 :: DW.DE | Deutsche Welle
Length: 29s

Russia undertakes a new project to string a high-speed internet cable across the northern border; An anti-piracy group is forcing internet providers to block access to certain ISPs; German patent cases heat up; Plus scientists in Scotland develop a sign language-to-English smartphone ap.…

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Spectrum: Big Brother Awards, fighting crime via smartphone, cyberbullying and anti-smoking laws in Scotland

2012-03-12 :: DW.DE | Deutsche Welle
Length: 29s

Amsterdam hosts the Big Brother Awards, a prize to mock the worst privacy offenders. Meanwhile, Dutch cops turn to smartphone apps to catch crooks. And, in Berlin, an anti-cyberbullying initiative is successful, but slow to expand. Finally, a Scottish professor explains how anti-smoking laws help healthy babies.Big Brother Awards highlight privacy violationsA Dutch privacy group gives awards to the worst privacy violations of the year. If you've been listening to Spectrum for awhile or following our coverage online, you'll know that hardly a week has gone by without news about privacy violations or data breaches. Whether it’s big companies like Google, Facebook or Apple, or governmental institutions, all across Europe privacy seems in danger. In the Netherlands, privacy advocates try to highlight the importance of privacy in a playful way. Last week, the worst of the worst received prizes in the Big Brother Awards in Amsterdam. Peter Teffer reports. Dutch smartphone apps digitize wanted postersCops in the Netherlands are hoping that their citizens will check their phones for suspects. Now, let's stay in Amsterdam and talk crime. In the piece we just heard, there was a mention of police using surveillance powers, which doesn't always sit well with privacy activists. But now, Dutch police have a new tool in their investigations as wanted ads meet the smartphone.Two new applications are empowering ordinary people to assist authorities in capturing suspects with tangible results. And Kosovo’s nascent IT outsourcing industry is lending a hand. Nate Tabak reports from Amsterdam. German anti-cyberbullying initiative showing initial successHowever, while the Berlin program has been useful, funding is limited to expand the program. While it’s easy to get excited about innovative applications and websites that can give us new ways to interrelate and “be social”, the tech world isn’t always filled with good news. Over recent years there have been a series of stories about young people who have encountered the dark side to social networks, in the form of cyber bullying and in the worst cases, the consequences are dire. Over the last couple of months a few things have been done in Germany to try and tackle cyber-bullying, including the country’s media watchdog monitoring the site “iShareGossip” and the suggestion of an emergency button, to alert authorities if children feel they are under threat, online. But for the first time in Germany, some research into a program to tackle cyber-bullying has returned some pretty good results. It attempts to deal with the potential victims and the bullies themselves in a program in schools. DW’s Jonathan Gifford reports from Berlin. Premature births fall in Scotland after banScottish researchers found that after the 2006 public smoking ban many health indicators improved. They have called for smoke-free legislation to be expanded around the globe. And finally today, let's talk about smoking. Since Scotland introduced a public smoking ban in 2006, Scottish public health researchers now say that there has been a 10 percent drop in the country's premature birth rate. The study, which was published in the journal PLoS Medicine on Tuesday, examined data from 700,000 women over 14 years, including time before the smoking ban. The researchers conclude that policies calling for smoke-free public spaces should be expanded. The research team, which included public health scholars from the Centre for Population and Health Sciences at the University of Glasgow and Western General Hospital in Edinburgh, collected information about babies born pre-maturely between January 1, 1996 and December 31, 2009, as recorded by the Scottish Morbidity Record. So to learn more, I spoke with the paper's lead author, Daniel Mackay. He's a senior lecturer in public health at the University of Glasgow.…

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Spectrum: Healthy smartphone apps, Salamworld, Neurochips, and Estonia's answer to ACTA

2012-03-05 :: DW.DE | Deutsche Welle
Length: 29s

The UK Ministry of Health is telling doctors to start prescribing smartphone apps to their patients. Meanwhile, a Turkish tech startup wants to create an Islamic social network. And, in the final installment of our Future Now series, a German scientist is trying to create microchips to replace damaged nerve cells. Plus, an Estonian lawmaker responds to ACTA.UK doctors prescribe smartphone appsThe British government is telling doctors to promote health-related apps. Some experts believe it will be helpful to promote fitness, but also other diseases that require monitoring, like diabetes. Family doctors usually prescribe drugs, but in the UK they’re now being encouraged to prescribe smartphone apps to their patients as well. Last month the British minister of health told general practitioners - or GPs - to encourage their patients to use of free or cheap health related apps. The aim: to help people manage their own health and save them unnecessary visits to the doctor. Lars Bevanger reports from Manchester. Muslim social networking site set to launchSalamworld aims to draw Muslims from around the world to have a 'halal' space online. The Turkish startup has already received financial backing from investors in Russia and Kazakhstan. Everyone knows Facebook is big, with more than eight-hundred million users and a value of some one hundred billion dollars. But there are other social networking sites. In China, Sina Weibo reports 227 million user accounts. And Russia's Vkontakte says it has more than 100 million. Now Salamworld.com hopes to establish itself as the Muslim facebook, offering a halal or Islam-friendly social networking platform. From Istanbul, Matthew Brunwasser reports. German researcher hopes to replace neural networks with chipsIn the final installment of our Future Now series, where we profile German researchers around the globe pushing the boundaries of science. This series receives funding from the German Ministry for Education and Research. This time around, we bring you a story from Tübingen, in southwestern Germany. In the Hollywood blockbuster film the Matrix, Keanu Reeves’ character plugs his brain into a network and seconds later has mastered kung fu. While that’s still solidly in the realm of science-fiction, the next installment of our Future Now series looks at how chips implanted in the brain could revolutionize treatment options for people have suffer from some neurological disorders or had a stroke. Researchers there are working on neurochips that can replicate, and hopefully, someday, replace brain functions. Robina Ziphora visited the scientists and Sean Sinico presents her report. Estonian lawmaker drafts response to ACTASome activists want to make sure that the Estonian government doesn't do away with important digital rights. And finally today, let's talk about the Anti-Counterfeiting Trade Agreement, better known as ACTA. If you've been following our online coverage or global tech newsrecently, you'll know that ACTA has been a contentious issue. This is a major international intellectual property treaty that has been signed, but not yet ratified by the EU, the US, Japan, Morocco, Mexico, Canada and a handful of other countries. While music and film executives have pushed it forward, many digital rights groups are worried that it will impose overly harsh restrictions on Internet users. There have been large protests in many cities across Europe over the last several weeks. Just last week, the European Parliament said it would take up the issue soon. Meanwhile, the European Commission has asked the European Court of Justice to rule on the treaty's potential legality. But up in Estonia, one lawmaker has taken up a different tack. Andrei Korobeinik is a member of the Estonian parliament and is the founder of rate.ee, an Estonian social network. Estonia, as we've talked about many times before on Spectrum, is a hotbed of tech activity in Europe. Most notably, it's the home of Skype, the online calling service. Korobeinik says that he and some other Estonian entrepeneurs want to make sure that ACTA doesn't stifle Estonia's digital haven. I spoke with him last week, on Skype.…

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Spectrum: Russian space woes, French futuristic homes, ResearchGate, and What Size am I?

2012-02-27 :: DW.DE | Deutsche Welle
Length: 29s

Roscosmos, the Russian space agency, is trying to re-find its footing after several mishaps. Plus, a Toulouse home of the future gets underway, despite the fact that they frequently don't catch on. Meanwhile, a Berlin startup aims to become the Facebook of scientists. And finally, a British developer creates a new online data visualization tool for online shopping. Russian space program woes continueRoscosmos, Russia's space agency, has been beset with numerous setbacks in recent months. However, NASA says it's not worried, but other analysts aren't so sure. Russia is the only country ferrying astronauts and cargo to the International Space Station and back since NASA retired its aging fleet. Russia's space agency has experienced a string of mishaps in recent months. The latest was the failure of its Phobos-Grunt probe. The satellite failed to leave earth orbit and crashed into the Pacific Ocean. Russia's space agency says foreign microchips and heavily charged space particles caused the probe to malfunction. NASA has said it's not worried. That's despite the fact that earlier this month, Russian authorities said the next Soyuz flight to the International Space Station originally scheduled for April would now be pushed back to May. And these latest findings have some analysts worrying about the reliability of Russia's space program. Jessica Golloher has the details from Moscow. Futuristics homes stumble along the wayDespite a new project in southern France to create an advanced home, there are many reasons why these new futuristic buildings rarely quite work out. And now, let's come back down to Earth. For centuries, science fiction authors have dreamed of traveling to other planets. And in the same way, they've re-imagined the way our buildings should look, too. In the French town of Toulouse, scientists are settling in with a new type of flatmates - robots. Researchers are testing robots in an experimental home called Adream which features home automation and environmentally friendly technologies. Scientists say the technology tested here will one day be used in our homes. But the thing is, history is littered with futuristic homes featuring high tech we have never used or could afford. Clea Caulcutt reports from Paris on why high tech often stops on the doorstep. ResearchGate links scientists via social networkingThe Berlin startup recently drew a new round of venture capital funding, and is poised to become the 'Facebook of scientists.' There are a bazillion social networks out there from Facebook to Flickr, covering just about any topic you can imagine. So it's no surprise that scientists have also got in on the act. Harvard-trained virologist and computer scientist, Ijad Madisch, co-founded ResearchGate in 2008. It's kind of like a mix between Facebook and LinkedIn where scientists create a profile page, can upload their research papers, connect, ask questions, and check out job listings. Today ResearchGate boasts 1.4 million users from eleven thousand institutions, in one hundred and ninety two countries. The major disciplines represented are biology, medicine, computer science, physics and chemistry. In fact, the site just got a new round of venture capital funding just last week. Cinnamon Nippard has more from Berlin. New online app aids women's clothing purchasesA UK web developer has created a new data visualization tool for women's fashion. She says that it makes it easy for people to compare different physical sizes between different clothing labels. And finally today, let's talk about online shopping. If you’ve ever tried to buy clothes online or offline, it can be a maddening experience. Enter: What Size Am I? a new, easy-to-use data visualisation online app created by a clever web developer in London, Anna Powell-Smith. We mentioned this new app in last week's news section of the show. But, I recently had a chance to catch up with Anna Powell-Smith via Skype.…

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Spectrum: Anti-malarial drugs, quark-gluon-plasma, monitoring Latvian schools, and satellite phones

2012-02-20 :: DW.DE | Deutsche Welle
Length: 29s

German scientists have unveiled a new method to produce more of a much-needed anti-malarial drug, Artemisinin. Meanwhile, in Austria, physicists say that they've now changed the understanding of a stage in the development of the early universe. Plus, three schools in Riga are testing a system to monitor school attendance. And, a Bochum researcher cracks the encryption on satellite phones.Higher volume of anti-malarial drugs on the wayA Berlin team has come up with a new way to reduce the cost and increase the amount of Artemisinin, a well-known anti-malarial drug. German scientists have developed a method to produce Artemisinin, the most effective anti-malaria drug, cheaply and in large quantities. Their findings were published in the journal Angenwandte Chemie International Edition in January. Cinnamon Nippard reports from Berlin. Vienna scientists re-evaluate the state of the early universeA team from Austria has published a new paper outlining the viscosity of quark-gluon-plasma, a unique state of matter found just after the Big Bang. Is there a limit on how fluid a fluid can be? Physicists have predicted that a liquid’s viscosity, or its ability to flow, has a lower limit. They’ve also predicted that only fluids like quark-gluon-plasma, which existed in the first flash at the birth of the universe, approach this limit. Plasma, of course, is a state of matter, related to a gas, when some of the particles are ionized. But it turns out that quark-gluon plasma may actually be a liquid, and, in fact, a perfect lique -- one with much lower viscosity than had been previously believed. And the Austrian team says this finding may help us take a step closer to better understanding the early universe. Kerry Skyring reports from Vienna. Latvian schools expand attendance trackingBy combining a keycard entry system, three Riga schools are monitoring attendance even more closely. However, for a country that has faced harsh surveillance in the past, it hasn't been universally welcomed. When it comes to safety at schools, universities and other institutions, there are various technologies where you have to use a card or a chip in order to enter the building or get into a room. But one month ago, two Latvian companies – an Internet start-up and an e-ticketing operator - presented a combined safety feature that includes a public transport card with an access card. In order to get in the school, the pupils have to swipe their e-ticket in front of turnstiles installed at the building’s entrance. All of this has come as a result of some security concerns at Latvian schools. But with the legacy of Soviet surveillance looming, not everyone is thrilled about this new attendance monitoring system. From Riga, Ä¢ederts Ä¢elzis reports. German researchers crack satellite phone encryptionA team at Ruhr University Bochum has shown how to defeat the built-in encryption found on Thuraya satellite phones used in Africa, Eurasia and the Middle East. Speaking of security, let's talk a little bit about encryption. Hundreds of thousands of people worldwide rely on satellite phones for communicate in remote or war-torn, or disaster areas. Although expensive, many customers are willing to pay that pretty penny to have reliable communication in ares that don’t have conventional mobile phone service -- usually that means government contractors or employees who are sent out to far-flung corners of the globe. Like modern mobile phones, satellite phones are equipped with built-in encryption that make it theoretically difficult for anyone monitoring radio signals across the airwaves to know what is being said. However, German researchers at Ruhr University Bochum, in western Germany, said earlier this month that they’ve now managed to crack two of the commonly-used encryption protocols, know as A5-GMR-1 and A5-GMR-2. A5-GMR-1 is related to an existing cypher, called A5/2, which was introduced in 1999, but was quickly cracked by another team of security researchers. Since July 1, 2006, the GSM Association said it would not longer support A5/2, and would go back to the an earlier version, A5/1, which was believed to have been stronger. But, A5/1 itself was later cracked in 2009. These satellite phone encryption protocols are commonly used in the Thuraya satellite phones used in Africa, Eurasia and the Middle East. The Bochum team has published their results in a new paper, called: “Don't Trust Satellite Phones.” To learn more, I spoke with Benedikt Driessen, one of the paper's authors.…

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Spectrum: European e-books, Angry Birds, Facebook under fire, and data protection reforms

2012-02-13 :: DW.DE | Deutsche Welle
Length: 29s

Italy hosts a European wide conference on the future of electronic publishing. Meanwhile, Rovio, the maker of Angry Birds, expands into merchandising, television and film. And, an Austrian law student meets with officials from Facebook over privacy concerns. And finally, the EU's top justice officials propses a massive overhaul to data protection law.Spanish firm mulls European book consortiumBook sales are declining across Europe and US giants are poised to pounce on new markets. One answer for European publishers could be to band together to create a common e-book platform.Angry Birds creator looks to spread its wingsRovio, the Finnish video game studio behind Angry Birds, is set to launch a Facebook version of the game on February 14. Meanwhile it has its sights set on expanding into merchandising, TV and films.Facebook officials meet with Austrian student groupFollow complaints filed with the Irish Data Protection Commissioner's office, a Vienna-based group called Europe vs. Facebook meets with representatives from California. The group wants Facebook to change its privacy and consent policies.Top EU Justice official calls for data protection reformsBut in a DW interview, Joe McNamee of European Digital Rights notes that these reforms will takes years to implement, and that there continue to be more questions than answers.…

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Spectrum: 'Italian SOPA' voted down, freedom of information, quantum computing, and violins

2012-02-06 :: DW.DE | Deutsche Welle
Length: 29s

The Italian parliament rejects a bill that would have imposed strict intellectual property restrictions. Meanwhile, a Berlin-based site called 'Ask the State' helps citizens submit freedom of information requests to the German government. And, Austria scientists pioneer 'blind quantum computing.' And finally, is that Stradivarius violin really worth millions of dollars? Italian free speech groups claim victoryDuring the furor over sweeping anti-piracy bills in the US and Europe, a digital rights saga in Italy has gone largely unnoticed. Free speech groups have led a revolt against the so-called 'Italian SOPA.' So you've heard of SOPA, an American anti-piracy bill that was met with resounding opposition by websites from around the world. Within the past couple weeks, there have also been similar protests in Poland, Slovenia and Bulgaria against ACTA, a new major international treaty that also aims to stop online piracy. But a similar digital rights saga in Italy has gone largely unnoticed. Last week, Italian free speech and libertarian groups spearheaded a revolt against the so-called "Italian SOPA," a reference to the controversial U.S. anti-piracy bill. The groups claimed the legislation would have dealt a major blow to free speech in Italy and beyond. But since Italian politicians across the political spectrum voted against the amendment, the free speech groups are claiming victory for now. From Milan, Shant Shahrigian reports. So you've heard of SOPA, an American anti-piracy bill that was met with resounding opposition by websites from around the world. Within the past couple weeks, there have also been similar protests in Poland, Slovenia and Bulgaria against ACTA, a new major international treaty that also aims to stop online piracy. But a similar digital rights saga in Italy has gone largely unnoticed. Last week, Italian free speech and libertarian groups spearheaded a revolt against the so-called "Italian SOPA," a reference to the controversial U.S. anti-piracy bill. The groups claimed the legislation would have dealt a major blow to free speech in Italy and beyond. But since Italian politicians across the political spectrum voted against the amendment, the free speech groups are claiming victory for now. In Milan, Shant Shahrigian reports. 'Ask the State' site traffic jumpsIn the wake of a recent German legal decision, freedom of information requests are on the rise. A curious battle has been raging in Berlin’s administrative court over the past few months involving the Bundestag, Freedom of Information and UFOs. Yep, you heard right. In December 2011, The Berlin Administrative Court made a landmark decision against the Bundestag, ruling that the reports of the parliamentary scientific services were accessible to the public under Freedom of Information Laws. And that means new requests for a young site -- Frag Den Staat, or “Ask the State” have jumped within the last month. Daniel Bishton reports from Berlin. Vienna scientists demo 'blind quantum computing'An Austrian has shown that is possible to send and compute quantum data securely. Imagine, for a moment, that the promise of powerful, super-fast quantum computers has materialized. Just like in the early days of regular computers, at first, there will only be a few of them, housed in special facilities. Users who want to harness their quantum capabilities will need to send data to a remote location, allow the computer to do its magic and send back the results. Quantum physicists have shown that there’s a way to do this that’s absolutely secure— meaning the remote quantum computer will never understand the true data even while it is manipulating it. This is called “blind quantum computing.” Though other researchers have described the theory behind such a blind-quantum-computing protocol a few years ago, a group of scientists in Vienna were the first to demonstrate that it works. Their results were published last month in Science magazine. Sruthi Pinnamaneni reports from Vienna. French researcher busts the Stradivarius mythYou might think concert violinists would rather play vintage instruments, built in the golden age of Stradivarius, than new ones. But a test group of virtuosi in the US has shown they would rather hold something new. And finally today, let's talk about violins. It's comon wisdom that the best violins are those that were built by Antonio Stradivari, the famed 17th and 18th century Italian violinmaker. They frequently fetch millions of dollars at auction. But in a scientific paper published just last month, Claudia Fritz of the University of Paris found that 21 concert violinists at an international competition in the United States thought modern instruments were rather more pleasing than the famous Stradvarius. Interview: Cyrus Farivar…

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Spectrum: Groupon geo-localization, British courts go digital, and the foldable car, Hiriko

2012-01-30 :: DW.DE | Deutsche Welle
Length: 29s

Deutsche Telekom and Groupon announce a partnership to sell localized discount deals. Meanwhile, British defense attorneys rail against new digitization plans for the legal system. And, Basque and American engineers unveil an electric car in Brussels.Groupon set to launch geo-location deals in GermanyThe American online coupon firm is partnering with Deutsche Telekom to unleash physically-based deals. Some German startups may already point the way forward.In my home country, the United States, there's a culture of people cutting coupons to save money. You'd grab a newspaper, cut out the coupon, bring it to the store and save 50 cents on coffee, or whatever. These days though, a lot of coupons have moved online. They've even taken new forms, like bringing a massive short-term deal to a bunch of people at once. Chicago startup Groupon has made a name for itself worldwide by offering limited-time deeply discounted deals as a way to get new customers in the door. But some companies have now made the leap to smartphones. Earlier this month in Germany, Groupon and Deutsche Telekom - Germany’s telecommunications giant - announced that they would be working together. While both companies are reluctant to offer up details for now, other German startups may point towards mobile commerce to come. Report: Cinnamon Nippard, BerlinUK prepares for digitization of legal fieldAll criminal justice documents documents are set to go digital by April 2012. However, recently, defense attorneys are publicly protesting this move, deriding it as too costly.While the arrival of the digital age has transformed almost every industry around the world, in the United Kingdom there's one profession where paper is still king: the law. Lawyers carry around piles of legal documents, and judges sift through lever arch files of photocopied evidence, painstakingly compiled by legal staff and police. The government believes it’s time to change all that and make criminal justice in the UK digital, saving 60m euros in the process – calling it the "biggest transformational change in a generation." But recently the government's plans have been challenged by firms worried that they could unfairly favour the prosecution and make justice in the UK less fair. Report: Robin Powell, LondonFoldable electric car to take to European streetsMeet Hiriko, a new electric car that can fold to one-third the size of a Smart car. But its Spanish and American designers may face an uphill battle selling it to the European public.Last week, a transatlantic team of designers and builders unveiled a new kind of electric car that is designed not only to save gas but to save space as well. Meet Hiriko, a new foldable electric car. It was designed at Massachusetts Institute of Technology in the US but built in Spain’s Basque country. Report: Teri Schultz, BrusselsBritish auto industry analyst remains skepticalIn a DW interview, Tim Urquhart of IHS Global says that Hiriko's designers face an uphill battle.In Teri Schulz' piece there, you heard an auto analyst -- Tim Urquhart with IHS Global Insight. He and I had a much longer conversation about how tough it will be for the folks behind Hiriko to actually get these cars on the road. He told me that sales of these kinds of city cars, have stagnated in the last year. In 2010 global sales of these type of cars hit 6.2 million units, and dropped a little to 5.9 million units in 2011, but are expected to rise slightly this year. Some people may remember the Smart car, a zippy little car that debuted in Europe back in 1994, which was backed by Germany's Daimler and Swatch, the Swiss watchmaker. Even that car has only sold under a million units worldwide over the last decade. In other words, Hiriko has a long way to go. Interview: Cyrus Farivar…

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Spectrum: Buying clothes online, TechHub Riga, the end of antibiotic resistance? And, Alzheimer's research

2012-01-09 :: DW.DE | Deutsche Welle
Length: 30s

UPCload, a Berlin startup, wants to make it easier to acqure new threads on the Internet. Plus, a new co-working space in Latvia hopes to kickstart the Baltic startup scene. And, new research out of Graz shows that it may be possible to eliminate anti-biotic resistance. Finally, a scientist at Lund University in Sweden shows that it is possible to detect Alzheimer's risk 10 years before symptoms.Berlin startup hopes to boost online clothes shoppingGiven high amount of returns, UPCload uses home webcams to take digital measurements. However, one analyst says that because clothes are very subjective, the company may have a hard time catching on. Shopping online has opened up a whole realm of bargains, from electronics to books and DVDs. But while 50 percent of all computer sales are online, buying clothes is a whole different kettle of fish dropping down to just 7 percent of sales. The main problem with buying clothes online is finding the right fit and people are generally more hesitant to buy clothes without trying them on first. If people do jump in and take the online retail challenge, there's a high chance they'll be sending those clothes back to the retailer. According to IBI a research institute attached to the University of Regensburg, 40 percent of all clothes bought online are returned. But a new Berlin-based start-up called UPcload has come up with a solution using a webcam and a CD. Report: Cinnamon Nippard, BerlinTechHub to open co-working space in LatviaWell-known London based startup incubator has finally expanded out to the continent, offering workspace at a fraction of the cost in the United Kingdom.In East London, there’s a small area known as the Silicon Roundabout. We’ve covered it here on Spectrum before. One of its anchors is TechHub, a co-working space that was co-founded by one of the editors at TechCrunch Europe. That’s one of the most well-known tech blogs on the continent. Next month, TechHub is expanding for the first time to the mainland. Over in Latvia, TechHub Riga will offer a co-working space for new IT startups and will hold various local and international events on a regular basis. Report: Ä¢ederts Ä¢elzis, RigaEnd to antibiotic resistance could be near, Austrian researchers sayA team in Graz says that they've pioneered a new technique that destroys a bacterium's cell membrane. One of the major issues for hospitals and health professionals is the world-wide increase in bacteria developing resistance to antibiotics. Now scientists in the Austrian city of Graz have developed an antibiotic which they claim does not lead to bacterial resistance. Research on the development has only been partly published in scientific journals due to pending patents and the drug is still some years away. Report: Kerry Skyring, Graz, AustriaAlzheimer's risk can be detected 10 years before symptoms, study findsIn a DW interview, a Lund University scientist says his team has doubled the early detection period for Alzheimer's. He hopes this will lead to better therapies for patients, as they may be able to be started earlier. And finally today, let's stay on the science side of things with one more interview. Alzheimer's is a debilitating neuro-degenerative disease associated with memory loss, dementia and the eventual loss of motor functions. Often it is hard for doctors to officially diagnose someone with the disease until it has extensively progressed. According to Alzheimer's Disease International, nearly 10 million people suffer from dementia in Europe alone, with Alzheimer's accounting for the overwhelming majority of these cases. For years, scientists around the world have tried to come up with better treatments and a cure for the disease, but few have been shown to be particularly effective. In a new scientific paper published in the January 1, 2012 edition of the Archives of General Psychiatry, a team of Swedish researchers have now shown that it's possible to detect individuals with a high risk of developing Alzheimer's 10 years before they show any outward symptoms. If their technique proves successful, it could become an important tool for managing future Alzheimer's patients. To learn more, I spoke with Dr. Oskar Hansson, a professor of neuroscience at Lund University in Sweden, and a co-author on the new paper. Interview: Cyrus Farivar…

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Spectrum: Hacking Dutch transit cards, naked mole rats, brain-powered driving, and downloading in Switzerland

2012-01-02 :: DW.DE | Deutsche Welle
Length: 30s

A Dutch journalist is charged with fraud after having exposed flaws in the new Chipkaart. Meanwhile, Berlin researchers examine what the naked mole rat can teach us about pain medication. And, Swiss engineers work on creating a brain-car interface. Finally, the Swiss government confirms that unauthorized downloading should stay legal. Dutch reporter tests boundary between hacking, journalismAt the Chaos Computer Club's annual new year's convention, a journalist outlines his hacking in the public interest. Last week, Berlin hosted the annual Chaos Communication Congress. That's a conference put on by the famed Chaos Computer Club, a well-known hacker group. We've covered them many times here on Spectrum. Many CCC members like to push the limits of technological systems, including some that lots of ordinary people use, like transit cards. If you've ever ridden the Tube in London, or out in Hong Kong, you've probably come across cards that allow you to digital load them with cash. Then, when you travel, the card debits down. But at a previous CCC event, hackers demonstrated that both the Oyster card and the Dutch Chipkaart are very insecure. Dutch journalist Brenno de Winter, was one of the people who put these vulnerabilities to the test and publicized his findings in the media. But earlier this year de Winter faced a criminal investigation and a possible 6 year prison sentence for hacking the Dutch travel card. While the case was dropped in September, de Winter and others argue that journalists who highlight flaws in such situations should not be tried like criminals. Report: Cinnamon Nippard, BerlinGerman researchers unlock naked mole rat's pain management abilitesThe hideous subterranean creature has special abilities to survive and not feel pain in normally toxic environments. Scientists believe that understanding its metabolism could also help human obesity as well.Now, let's stay in the German capital and talk about mole rats. Specifically, the African Naked Mole Rat. Just last month, German researchers showed how this ugly-looking underground animal is immune to feeling pain when exposed to a toxic acid. Earlier this year, an international team of scientists announced they had mapped the entire genome sequence of the naked mole rat. But the Berlin group’s findings now bear vast implications for analgesic drug research - bringing new hope to chronic pain sufferers. Report: Daniel Bishton, BerlinSwiss researchers advance brain-car interfaceEngineers in Lausanne hope to use computers to anticipate driving actions and reactions on the road, as a way to improve driver safety.Do you hate to drive? For many of us, commuting is a task we could live without. Now researchers throughout Europe are trying to get cars to do more of the work for us. In fact, over the last year we've covered a lot of the Italian and German research on autonomous cars. But in Switzerland, one project is measuring brainwaves to see if cars can anticipate our moves and help carry them out. This marks the first time neuroscience has been used to figure out drivers' immediate intentions. The research could one day change driving as we know it. Report: Shant Shahrigian, Lausanne, SwitzerlandSwiss government confirms right to downloadIn a DW interview, president of Pirate Party Switzerland argues that other countries should take up this digitally liberal policy. And finally today, we'll stay in Switzerland for one more interview. At the end of November, a new government report from the Federal Office of Intellectual Property confirmed that current Swiss law with respect to downloading copyrighted material should stay as it is. Unlike in most other countries around the world, downloading copyrighted material for personal use in Switzerland is legal. In most countries authorized downloads of music, films or software are often prosecuted. Often times, entertainment industry groups decry digital piracy as theft and argue that they are losing money. However, the new Swiss report argued that this may not, in fact, be the case -- as that revenue has simply moved to other areas. To learn more, I called up Denis Simonet, the president of the Pirate Party Switzerland. The Pirate Party, as we've talked about many times on Spectrum, is a political party that advocates for digital rights and the re-thinking of intellectual property law. Interview: Cyrus Farivar…

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Spectrum: Nails on a chalkboard, robotic flocks, computing climate change, and London's cabbies' brains

2011-12-26 :: DW.DE | Deutsche Welle
Length: 6s

German and Austrian scientists examine why the screeching sound of nails on a chalkboard is so grating. Plus, engineers in Switzerland have developed small drones with the ability to flock together like birds. And, in our Future Now series, a huge computing center in Hamburg crunches the numbers of climate change. Also, how becoming a London taxi driver changes your brain, and more.Why does nails scratched across a chalkboard bother us so much?German and Austrian scientists examine the physiological effects of nails on a blackboard to try to figure out what it is that gives us the creeps.Our first story today is actually physically difficult for me to talk about…because it revolves around the one sound that just drives me batty: Long fingernails raking their way across a blackboard. But did you know there is a whole area of science—it’s called psychoacoustics—that investigates why certain sounds are so lovely, and others so horrible to the human ear? Its applications include designing better hearing aids or concert halls. There are some psychoacoustic inquires that arise from simple curiosity. Such as this one: why does the sound of nails on a blackboard make people almost universally uncomfortable, across cultures and across race? In a study publicly presented just last month, scientists at the University of Vienna and the Macromedia University for Media and Communication, Cologne, have tried to answer this question by recruiting more than a hundred test subjects and studying their reactions to this much-maligned sound - by playing it to them again and again. This, alongside digitally-manipulated variations—nails on chalkboard at higher pitch, nails on chalkboard at lower pitch, and so on—to isolate the exact qualities that make it so grating. Report: Sruthi Pinnamaneni, ViennaSwiss researchers teach flying robots how to flockLausanne engineers build small drones that can flock together by communicating via WiFi. Researchers hope the robots could have military and rescue applications. When you hear about unmanned flying drones in the news, the story is usually about bombing runs in far-flung parts of the world. But in Lausanne, Switzerland, researchers are developing a peaceful use for flying robots - and they have come up with some groundbreaking technology on the way. To make robots for search-and-rescue operations, the researchers programmed their models to flock like birds. What's remarkable is, once they're in the air, each robot acts autonomously - a breakthrough the researchers are looking to exploit in a number of ways. Report: Shant Shahrigian, LausanneHamburg data center crunches climate change numbersGerman Climate Computing Center does a lot of the heavy-lifting for climate scientists. And now, it's time for another installment of our Future Now series. This is an ongoing series that brings you profiles of German scientists doing interesting work around the globe. Support for this series comes from the German Ministry of Education and Research. Earlier this month, climate experts and researchers left the South African city of Durban after nearly two weeks of haggling over a successor to the Kyoto Protocol. No matter what meeting, working group or presentation was being held, it’s likely participants were talking about and looking at models of what will happen to the planet depending on any number of factors. It’s also likely that the German Climate Computing Center in Hamburg played a role in creating the models climate experts were poring over. A super-computer at the Hamburg facility has been processing climate data non-stop ever since it was was installed in 2009. Oxana Evdokimova got a look at the center’s super-computer . Report: Sean SinicoLondon taxi drivers offer window into human brain's flexibilityUK researchers have shown that cab drivers who learn the layout of the capital city - 'the Knowledge' - exhibit growth in the brain, challenging the notion that children are the only ones with 'plastic' minds.Even if you've never been to the British capital, you've probably seen those iconic black London cabs in films or on TV. Now, even though most cab drivers in other parts of the world rely on their own brain and on GPS devices, London drivers have almost superhuman powers. Becoming a cab driver here means memorizing all of the sightseeing destinations the city has to offer, plus the names and locations of 25,000 streets within a six-mile (9.6 kilometer) radius of King's Cross station. In fact, this is so unusual that London cabbies give this a special name - the Knowledge. It takes as long as four years to complete to acquire the Knowledge, and only about half of the people who undertake the training actually become cab drivers. But in a new study published earlier this month, British scientists have shown that those who do pass don't just get a license to drive a cab - they also gain brain volume. So I rang up Eleanor Maguire, a professor of neurology at the University College London, and the lead author on the new paper. Interview: Cyrus FarivarEU vows to help online dissidents speak outThe European Union has unveiled a strategy called 'No-Disconnect' to help online activists living under oppressive regimes get their message out without fear of state surveillance. And finally today, if you've been following our online coverage, you may have seen the announcement earlier this month of the new EU plan to help Internet activists in repressive regimes to communicate safely online. It's called the No-Disconnect strategy and it was unveiled in Brussels earlier this month. However, European officials are yet to precisely explain how these tools will be created, distributed, or evaluated. The new strategy includes developing technology to enhance privacy, teaching activists how to use it, developing on-the-ground intelligence to monitor the level of surveillance and censorship. So to learn more about this new plan, I rang up Marietje Schaake. She's a Dutch member of the European Parliament and has been at the forefront of advocacy for digital freedoms and protections online. Interview: Cyrus Farivar…

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Spectrum: The Future Prize, the home of tomorrow, Russia's online reactions to unrest and an update from CERN

2011-12-19 :: DW.DE | Deutsche Welle
Length: 30s

A Dresden engineer wins Germany's top technological research prize, while, up in Hamburg, in northern Germany, another set of engineers are building the house of the future. What the Russian government is doing, or not doing, on the Internet and at CERN, scientists say they're getting even closer to finding the elusive Higgs boson particle.Home of the futureAt a lab in Hamburg, Germany is currently exploring ways to bring "smart living" to a more personal level.Futurists have been touting the home of tomorrow for generations, with the idea being to make it more automated, and more efficient. Of course, many modern homes already have elements of this, with wireless Internet, and perhaps a stereo system that can be played in multiple rooms. Apartments and houses across Europe are taking on more and more aspects of a smart home. Real-time energy gauges were introduced to UK homes earlier this year, while Germany, Austria and Switzerland are working on smart grids that optimize electrical supplies through IT. Waiting for Higgs-BosonScientists at a large research laboratory outside Geneva, Switzerland say they have seen tantalizing hints of the existence of the Higgs Boson.The elusive Higgs-Boson particle could help explain the origins of the Universe. But last week, the researchers, who presented results of two experiments at CERN, the European Organization for Nuclear Research, say their evidence is not yet strong enough to claim a discovery. Lisa Schlein reports from Geneva.The German Future PrizeEach year, the German government issues a German Future Prize. Since 1997, the German president has issued the top tech award with a cash prize of 250,000 euros.Last week, Karl Leo and his team in Dresden, in Eastern Germany won this year's prize. But we travelled to all three to find out what cutting edge researchers in Germany are up to. A Q&A with Keir GilesOver the last two weeks, the world has watched as protests have unfolded across Russia in the aftermath of the controversial parliamentary elections that critics argued were marred with fraud. On Sunday, Russian President Dmitry Medvedev announced an electoral probe and re-iterated that he disagreed with calls from protesters over the weekend to hold fresh elections.Both media outlets and election monitors have reported being hit with an overwhelming number of requests for data in an effort to knock them offline, and some of those affected are now saying the attacks against them were the work of state-sponsored criminals. However, there have also been allegations that the Kremlin has been manipulating mobile Internet access in Moscow as a way to frustrate and disrupt protestors. To learn more, Spectrum host Cyrus Farivar called up Keir Giles, the director of the Conflict Studies Research Centre. That's an Oxford-based non-profit research center that provides analysis on Russia and the region.…

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Spectrum: Keeping late-night guards awake, facial recognition in the UK, Munich's IT summit, and Carrier IQ

2011-12-12 :: DW.DE | Deutsche Welle
Length: 29s

In Riga, a security company has developed a cheap and novel way to make sure night-owl workers don't doze off. Plus, Realeyes is watching what you're watching. And, the German government holds its 6th annual IT Summit in Munich. And finally, Bavarian privacy authorities are taking early steps, examining how Apple is using controversial monitoring software.New Latvian gadget keeps late-night guards awakeA small Riga startup uses a randomized alarm clock system to keep those on the graveyard shift up and about. Sleeping on the job, unfortunately is a common habit amongst security guards who are usually paid to monitor CCTV security cameras or to watch over a post overnight. Now, Latvians have designed a gadget that keeps guards awake by generating light and sound signals at random. Report: Ä¢ederts Ä¢elzis, RigaUK firm pioneering new facial recognition advertisementsThrough a combination of eye-tracking and recognizing the features of someone's face, new customized ads could be on the way. If you’ve ever seen the 2002 science fiction film Minority Report with Tom Cruise, you may remember a scene when Cruise's character John Anderton walks into a mall and passes a holographic advert for a car. A camera near the ad identifies him by scanning his retina, calls him by name and offers a test run in the new Lexus. Anderton then passes an ad for Guinness, which suggests that he could really do with a cool beer. Personalized and interactive ads have long been the dream of firms trying to sell their wares to exactly the right kind of consumers. Although we don’t have eye-scanning in public spaces yet, high-quality webcams are combining with new digital facial analysis techniques being developed in the UK, to help firms sell us exactly what we never knew we needed. Report: Robin Powell, LondonGerman government touts IT planIn annual summit, held this year in Munich, German business and political leaders laud the benefits of IT. However, they neglect some of Germany's biggest tech issues of recent months. Last week, the German government convened its sixth annual IT summit. This year, they held in the capital of the southern state of Bavaria, in Munich. Lots of German officials were there, including Chancellor Angela Merkel herself. Given Germany's leadership in industrial manufacturing, the country is now trying to also take on the upcoming "Internet of Things." That's the idea that simple household appliances, like your fridge or your toaster could be connected to the Internet. Beyond that, as Germany is phasing out its nuclear power over the next decade, the government is pushing for more and more smart grids, or intelligent ways of distributing energy. But there was much more than that. One of my colleagues on the German-speaking side of Deutsche Welle, Matthias von Hein, was at the conference, and he spoke with me in-studio last week. Interview: Cyrus FarivarEuropean authorities examine US mobile monitoring softwareUS vendor Carrier IQ says it is only providing software to mobile carriers to improve service. But German, Irish, and UK officials say they are looking into possible breaches of data protection law. And finally today, we'll stay in Bavaria for one more interview. In November, an American computer security researcher showed how a hidden application that runs on millions of smartphones monitors and tracks various actions on the phone. Worse still, its nearly impossible to remove and most users don't even know they have it. The company that makes the software, Carrier IQ, says its just a diagnostic tool that is used by handset makers and mobile providers to examine dropped text messages and calls. But it's caused a bit of a dust-up in the US and in Europe over what its capabilities are. Earlier this month, European data protection authorities and consumer advocacy groups have now taken early steps toward investigating a possible breach of local and European Union data protection laws. Irish authorities said they had contacted local mobile providers with similar questions. And a representative from the British data protection authority said on Tuesday it would soon be contacting UK-based carriers. And last week, Thomas Kranig, head of the Bavarian State Office for Data Protection in southern Germany sent a letter of inquiry to Apple's Munich office. So I rang up Mr. Kranig to learn more. Interview: Cyrus Farivar…

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Spectrum: Russian elections, Prishtina Startup Weekend, IPv6 in Germany and Estonian Air's Skype check-in

2011-12-05 :: DW.DE | Deutsche Welle
Length: 29s

Russia held parliamentary elections this past weekend, which saw some popular websites be hit with cyberattacks. That may be a preview of next year's presidential elections. Meanwhile, in Kosovo, young entrepreneurs gather for Prishtina Startup Weekend. Plus, IPv6 is touted at a conference in Germany. And finally, Estonian Air becomes the world's first airline to allow check-ins via Skype.Russia elections see new cyberattacks, online monitoringAs United Russia holds onto a slim majority in parliamentary elections held on Sunday, the government is launching a new Internet monitoring system. On Sunday, Russia held parliamentary elections across the country. With 95 percent of the votes counted, Prime Minister Vladimir Putin's party, United Russia, maintained a very slim majority in parliament. But observers and government critics have alleged that there were electoral violations in play. Over the weekend, the website of Golos, the country's only independent election monitor, was hit with a cyber attack. Other sites were similary attacked, including the radio station Ekho Moskvy, and LiveJournal, a popular blogging platform. But all of this is just a prelude to next year's highly-anticipated presidential elections, which will likely see the return of Putin as president. It's likely that over the next few months, this political battle will take on an online dimension as well. Report: Jessica Golloher, MoscowKosovo's nascent tech community grows at Prishtina Startup WeekendIn 54 hours, young Kosovars took turned ideas into actual companies. They hope to kickstart their own 3-year-old country, which itself remains very much in startup mode.On Sunday, Kosovo's tech community wrapped up the country's first Startup Weekend. Like others that have happened throughout the world, the 54-hour marathon saw minute-long pitches transform into viable startups selling actual products. In Kosovo, a country very much in its own start-up mode, the weekend was as much about fostering the burgeoning geek community as it was about connecting ideas with venture capital. Report: Nate Tabak, PrishtinaGermany hosts next-generation Internet protocol conferenceIPv6 will expand the number of available addresses far beyond what is currently available. Now, one of the good things about the Internet is that people like you and me don't have to know how it works in order to use it. One of the Internet’s main technical elements is something called Internet Protocol, or IP. Everything on the Internet at any given time, ranging from your mobile phone to your computer has a unique IP address. Think of it as being like a phone number. Currently, most folks use the decades-old protocol version number, also knows as IPv4. At the time it was developed nobody would have imagined the huge expansion of the Internet. In other words, IPv4 – which only provides for a rather limited number of addresses – has become a victim of its own success. It turns out that nearly a half-century after the Internet's founding, we're running out of address space. But, a follow-up protocol, IPv6, stands ready to come to the rescue. In Germany, IPv6 may lead to a whole host of new innovations. Report: Hardy Graupner, PotsdamEstonian Air launches check-in via Skype video chatIn a pilot project for flights from Moscow to Tallinn, the company is expanding the ways that passengers can check-in to their flight. And finally today, some news from Estonia and Russia. As many listeners of Spectrum will know, I'm a big fan of Estonia. Beyond it's beautiful countryside and amazing culture, it's a hotbed of tech startups. Most notably, it's the home of Skype - the computer program that makes phone calls over the Internet free. Earlier this year, we told you about how the airport in the Estonian capital, Tallinn, now has the world's first Skype booth that lets travelers use the service, right in the airport, for free. It's like a telephone booth but for the modern era. Well, it's probably no surprise that other Estonian companies are trying to figure out how to use Skype to improve their service. Well, just last month, Estonian Air announced its new trial of allowing passengers traveling from Moscow to Tallinn to check-in via video Skype chat. To learn more, I rang up Alex Tashin - on Skype, naturally. He's the Area Station Manager for Scandinavia and Eastern Europe. I started off by asking him to walk me through the steps. Interview: Cyrus Farivar…

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Spectrum: A cellular 'operating system,' European e-books, solar power chargers, and Dutch data protection

2011-11-28 :: DW.DE | Deutsche Welle
Length: 30s

UK-based scientists are working on a way to create a standardized platform for synthetic biology. Meanwhile, a Norwegian business professor laments the sorry state of e-books. And, a Berlin startup launches a social media-fueled solar-powered gadget charger. Finally, a Dutch law professor on the local data protection authority.Synthetic cells to get standard 'operating system,' UK scientists sayNottingham-based biologists want to create a standard platform upon which other researchers could build various items, not unlike a computer programming environment. It’s been the stuff of science fiction - to create new life from scratch and programme it to do whatever you want. Last year we inched closer to that vision when US biologists produced a functioning cell controlled by man-made DNA. But building cells, or synthetic biology as it’s known, is a painfully slow process. That could now change, because at the beginning of this month came the announcement that UK biologists are teaming up with computer scientists to seriously speed things up. The team at Nottingham University want to make a biological operating system which would allow them to programme living cells to perform different function - just like a computer. Report: Lars Bevanger, NottinghamE-books rising slowly across EuropeIn a DW interview, a Norwegian business professor examines electronic publishing in his home country and beyond. Now we've talked a lot about e-book readers and related services over the last year. There are lots of them out there. I myself have a Kindle that I use frequently. Other people have an iPad. Here in Europe, the Oyo reader is starting to get some attention. But e-books have been slow on the uptake here in Europe. In fact, just last week, the Wall Street Journal published an article entitled: "European Book Market Holds Back E-Readers" It said that while around 17% of all printed books sold in the U.K. in 2009 were bought online, that proportion was only 12% in Germany. That figure drops to 7 percent in France and even lower in Italy and Spain. That's according to the Federation of European Publishers. By contrast, Americans buy nearly as many printed books online as they do from bookstores. In a blog post earlier this month, a Norwegian business professor, Espen Andersen, decried the sorry state of ebooks, especially in his home country. He openly dismissed a new plan by a Norwegian publishing company to sell an e-reader that has removable digital book disks, rather than making them available as individual files. So I rang him up on Skype to learn more. Interview: Cyrus FarivarBerlin startup melds solar power with social mediaChangers is betting that by incentivizing the use of solar power through discounts in online retailers and through peer pressure, that more people will be driven to use portable solar power. The humble calculator was one of the first pieces of fairly ubiquitous computing and by the time I got to school, every kid had one. And also by that stage almost all calculators had a little solar cell in it, that would power it up. We’re now seeing a return to that principle, with solar portable chargers emerging on the market with the capacity to charge your mobile phone or even your laptop. But one new company out of Berlin has just launched its solar charging kit. The startup has a unique system which integrates your charging with your online social networks. And what’s more, they also want to reward you, for every watt-hour you generate. Report: Jonathan Gifford, BerlinDutch privacy authority tries to assert itselfIn the wake of its dealings with Google, the Dutch Data Protection Authority is seeking new power, law professor says in DW interview. If you've been listening to Spectrum for awhile now, or have been following our daily online news stories, you know that we cover data protection a lot. You probably also know that German authorities frequently are talking up how Google or Facebook or some other company aren't complying with German law. But this time, I wanted to slide over to our wester neighbor, the Netherlands. Earlier this month, Google announced it would change the way it collects data about the physical location of WiFi routers worldwide after coming under pressure from Dutch privacy authorities. WiFi network operators worldwide will now be able to opt-out of Google's scanning program, which the US firm uses to provide geolocation services. In April, the Dutch Data Protection Authority (DPA) criticized Google, saying it needed to contact 3.6 million WiFi network owners in the Netherlands and offer them a way to have their data removed from Google's servers.The DPA also threatened to fine Google 1 million euros ($1.4 million) if it continued to scan for people's WiFi routers. The Dutch authority says it will drop the threat of a fine if Google does in fact allow people to opt-out of the scanning scheme. That's pretty big talk coming from just over the border. So to learn more about what's going on in The Hague, where the DPA is based, I turned to Gerrit-Jan Zwenne, a professor of telecom law at the University of Leiden. Interview: Cyrus Farivar…

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Spectrum: Radiocarbon dating and fat cells, 17th-century French communications, NFC in the UK and the ARM chip

2011-11-21 :: DW.DE | Deutsche Welle
Length: 30s

In a new paper, Vienna scientists detail how to use the 'bomb-peak method' to understand the mechanics of cellular biology. Plus, a French professor explains today's parallels with 400-year-old Parisian history. And, as London gears up for the 2012 Olympics, companies are circling to provide new NFC-enabled mobile phones. Finally, ARM chips move into data centers.Austrian and Swedish scientists use Cold War history to better understand cellular biologyScientists are using radiocarbon dating to answer questions about human fat. How long is the fat in our bodies stored? And does this mechanism differ in people who are obese?Most of us think of radiocarbon dating as a technique used to figure out the age of very, very, very old stuff — fossils, ruins or icemen. But in the last decade, a new type of radiocarbon dating called the "bomb-peak" method is becoming more popular with biologists trying to answer questions about the age of our innards. Report: Sruthi Pinnamaneni, ViennaWhat 17th-century France can teach us about information overloadAn American professor of French describes how feeling inundated with correspondence is not a modern problem -- and the equivalent of Twitter, 400 years ago.Now, here on Spectrum we talk a lot about new stuff. New science and technology, naturally. But sometimes we can learn something about our modern world by checking out the past. Earlier this month, a French professor at Stanford University in California gave an interview to a university blog talking about the changes in communications technology today, are in many ways, reminiscent of 17th century France. As the blogger and journalist Cythia Haven wrote: "Public postal systems became the equivalent of Facebook, Twitter, Google+ and smartphones. Letters crisscrossed Paris by the thousands daily. Voltaire was writing 10 to 15 letters a day. Dramatist Jean Racine complained that he couldn’t keep up with the aggressive letter writing. His inbox was full, so to speak." Haven also quotes Anaïs Saint-Jude, as saying: “It was an early modern version of information overload.” And that's what caught my attention. So to learn more I thought I'd get Saint-Jude on Skype to learn more. Interview: Cyrus Farivar Tech and financial companies hone in on NFC payments in LondonMobile network operators, handset makers, banks and credit card companies all stand to gain from a market that could be worth over 50 billion euros by 2015.Do you have a keycard for your office? Or perhaps for for your transit card? In London, for example, the Underground system encourages travelers to buy an Oyster card, to swipe a card above a special reader on the turnstiles. The tech that enables this contactless system is called RFID. The thing with RFID is that it relies on a reader or pad to read data off of the card. For a transit system, of course, it would be to debit the amount on the card. But now, there's a newer type of RFID, called NFC, or Near Field Communication. NFC allows for two-way data transfers at close range, and has started to become standard in credit cards, as a new type of payment system. And it's on the rise in mobile phones. But with a raft of new products about to launch in the UK, who will lead the mobile payment revolution? Report: Robin Powell, LondonEnergy-efficient chips move into enterprise sectorARM chips, which have come to dominate the mobile market, are now starting to enter the data center sector.Now, if you've got a smartphone - with NFC or not - chances are good that your phone has an ARM chip in it. That's a type of microprocessor developed in the UK about 30 years ago. ARM chips are specially designed to be very energy efficient, which is what makes them so attractive to be used in mobile devices. But, what's interesting about ARM chips, is that they're now starting to be used in data centers, too. Data centers, of course, are these huge rooms full of servers that is what powers the Internet. Your Facebook profile - along with 800 million others - are stored in Facebook's data centers across the world. And the thing is, as these data centers get bigger and bigger, they start to draw more and more power. Just last month Facebook announced it was going to build a data center in Sweden, largely so it could save on cooling costs. And Google launched a seawater-cooled data center in Finland in September. But earlier this month, Hewlett-Packard announced it would soon be making servers with ARM chips as a way to get those energy costs down even further. So to learn more, I spoke with Steve Furber, a professor of computer science at the University of Manchester, and one of the original designers of the ARM chip. Interview: Cyrus Farivar…

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Spectrum: Mars500 'lands' in Moscow, the future of cars, Internet freedom, and 'Beat the Censor'

2011-11-14 :: DW.DE | Deutsche Welle
Length: 30s

A simulated mission to Mars finally ends after 17 months. Meanwhile, a German scientist in Karlsruhe outlines his work on a new type of automated cars. Plus, Dutch MEP Marietje Schaake comes down hard against European companies that sell online surveillance software. And finally, a Luxembourg student designs a game to better understand Internet censorship.Simulated cosmonauts say they 'became a family' after 520 days togetherThe 17-month mission in Moscow examined the psychological effects of a simulated Mars mission. Meanwhile, Russian officials announce the Wednesday launch of a new probe to the Red Planet. Finally! After a year and a half, six crew members are now free from an isolation module in Moscow. The men were kept away from the world in an attempt to simulate the psychological effects of a return voyage from Mars. On the same day, last Tuesday, Russian officials also announced the launch of a new three-year mission to bring back a soil sample from Mars. However this week, Russian officials said the new Mars probe had likely failed. Report: Jessica Golloher, MoscowAutonomous cars may soon be able to speed up trafficIn Future Now series, Karlsruhe professor wants to take human error out of driving. Our next report comes from our Future Now series. Here, we profile German researchers whose work has the potential to change the way we live our daily lives. Support for this series comes from the German Ministry for Education and Research. This week we’re going to hear about Christoph Stiller. He’s convinced that he can make roads safer by taking control away from drivers and giving to cars. The autonomous cars he and his team are working on would be able to cut down on road accidents and speed up the flow of traffic by taking human error out of the highway equation. Report: Ali Almakhlafi / Sean SinicoDutch lawmaker takes European software companies to taskMEP Marietje Schaake says that the EU cannot allow European companies to sell online surveillance software to repressive governments worldwide.Earlier this month, the UK Foreign and Commonwealth Office hosted a major Internet policy conference in London. We covered that just a few weeks ago here on Spectrum. But it’s more than just the British government that’s interested in sorting out how governments around the world should deal with Internet policy. In other words, how should governments be able to legislate a "conscience" for the Web? If so, whose standards will be the measure? The European Union has long been grappling with questions like these but now one EU lawmaker says abuses have gone too far and it’s time to end the ambiguity. Report: Teri Schultz, BrusselsOnline game aims to teach Internet censorship principles to the public'Beat the Censor' won a top prize at the EU Hackathon in Brussels earlier this month. Now, of course, there's more than one way to bring up issues of Internet surveillance and censorship. Sven Clement is a 21-year-old student from Luxembourg, currently studying at the University of Saarland, just across the border in Germany. He's also the president of the Pirate Party of Luxembourg. Along with two other German colleagues, Clement helped create a new online game called "Beat the Censor." The game one first prize at the EUHackathon in Brussels earlier this month. Interview: Cyrus Farivar…

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Spectrum: London Cyber Conference, Manchester police use social media, the brain on video games, and more

2011-11-07 :: DW.DE | Deutsche Welle
Length: 30s

Delegates from around the globe converge in London to confab about Internet policy. Meanwhile, Manchester city police show other European law enforcement how using social media has worked for them. Plus, an interview with a Dutch artist who has rendered Geocities data into art. And, a University of Bonn scientist examines video games' effects on the brain. Finally, a Q&A on INET Romania.Cyber-security pits West against China, RussiaThe UK government is pushing for ongoing dialogue for international standards for activity online. Meanwhile, Russia and China want a sovereign-based international cyber-agreement. Hundreds of delegates from around the world came together last week for the London Conference on Cyberspace. They had a daunting agenda: to address all aspects of the internet in modern society, from social effects to economic benefits and from internet access to cybercrime. The discussions were supposed kickstart an international dialogue, dubbed the London Agenda. But do governments have the necessary influence to define such an agenda when it comes to cyberspace? Report: Robin Powell, LondonManchester police shows off social media prowessIn a recent conference, Greater Manchester police demonstrates its use of Twitter, Facebook for other European law enforcement agencies. Millions of us use social media to interact with each other. But what happens when law enforcement turns to Twitter, Facebook and Flickr to communicate with the people they serve? Just a few hours north of London, the Greater Manchester Police have had a comprehensive social media strategy in place for more than a year now. That's why last week they invited police forces from across Europe to learn from their experience. Report: Lars Bevanger, ManchesterDutch digital artist renders years-old Geocities pages into new formRichard Vijgen wants Internet users to think about the previous generation of Internet collaboration. Now, we've talked about data visualization on Spectrum before. That's the idea of making graphic interfaces of large data sets. Usually they have some sort of public interest purpose. But what about using data visualization for artistic purposes? Richard Vijgen is a Dutch artist based in the city of Arnhem, the Netherlands, near the German border. Several weeks ago, he announced a project called the "Deleted City." It's a new art installation based on the found webpages from one of the earliest online hosts, Geocities. Interview: Cyrus FarivarBonn scientist finds link between first-person shooter video games, emotional 'de-sensitization'A University of Bonn psychology professor showed that gamers showed "significantly lower" activity in the left lateral medial frontal lobe, the area of the brain responsible for emotional reactions. Now just as we've had to deal with new online communities ranging from Geocities to the more recent Facebook, video games have also had a profound impact on our culture over the last few decades. In fact, the effects of video games on behavior are a frequent topic in the news, in politics and in research. Scientists right here at the University of Bonn recently published a study which they say suggests that players of violent video games suffer from emotional de-sensitization. Report: Stuart Tiffen, BonnRomania to host international Internet conferenceInternet Society Romnia hosting regular international conference, to focus on privacy, freedom of speech issues. And finally this week, I wanted to swing to far into eastern Europe, way out into Romania. This post-Soviet country has been a member of the European Union since 2007. This week, its capital city, Bucharest, is hosting an INET conference. This is one of a series of get-togethers by members of the Internet Society, a non-profit organization that helps to shape Internet policy around the world. This conference will consider: "Internet access in Romania," "Trust and Privacy," "Freedom of speech," and "The future of the Internet." Sounds pretty ambitious. So to learn more, I checked in with Eduard Tric, the Chairman of the Internet Society Romania. Interview: Cyrus Farivar…

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Spectrum: Digital conservation, robots, Facebook in Germany and Bitcoin

2011-10-31 :: DW.DE | Deutsche Welle
Length: 30s

On this week's show we look at the ephemeral nature of digital art, the latest developments for Facebook in Germany, robots in space and an interview with Sweden's Pirate Party founder Rick Falkvinge on Bitcoin.Facebook's travails in GermanyFacebook hasn’t exactly had the easiest time with European privacy and data protection law. Since August, the data commissioner of the northern German state of Schleswig-Holstein, has argued that the Facebook 'Like' buttons are in violation of German law. And so, a sub-commitee of the German parliament summoned Facebook representatives to Berlin.Digital conservationMany artists are use digital tools to create new and interactive art. But a lot of computer-generated art is lucky to survive even a few decades because computers themselves change so quickly. The fast pace of technology has outstripped the capacity of museums to conserve such works. In Karlsruhe, a new exhibition shows the challenges of saving digital art from oblivion.Robots in spaceIn 2016, ESA is slated to send a satellite to Mars to study the atmosphere, and two years later, to send a robotic rover to explore the surface. One of the people who might have some input on that project is Frank Kirchner. He’s a professor of computer science at the University of Bremen.Interview with Rick FalkvingeEarlier this year, Rick Falkvinge, the founder of the Pirate Party in Sweden, famously blogged that he was converting all of his Swedish-crown savings to Bitcoins. But now, he says he doesn’t hold any, even though he’s hopeful about the currency’s future.…

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Spectrum: Hadopi, Net Neutrality in the Netherlands, Faroe Islands DNA, German women in IT, and EU e-waste

2011-10-25 :: DW.DE | Deutsche Welle
Length: 30s

One year on, the controversial anti-piracy law in France has issued three warnings to 60 users - that could lead to a loss of Internet access. Meanwhile, the effects of pending net neutrality legislation. And, Denmark will set out to voluntarily sequence the DNA of the Faroe Islands. Plus, the trade group BITKOM pushes for more women in German IT. Finally, how the EU wants to reduce e-waste. French users accused of copyright violation await possible Internet cutoff60 users around France may face loss of home Internet access for one month as punishment for violating the country's tough anti-piracy law known as Hadopi.One year ago this month, France began enforcing a new law called Hadopi. The law established an anti-piracy agency with the same name. The idea was that French Internet users were given three chances if they were caught illegally downloading something - like music, films or software. One of the most controversial parts of the law was that after the third warning, the offenders would have their Internet access cut off for a month. 60 people have reached the final - most controversial - stage of the process. But none of those 60 have had their Internet access cut off, for now. Report: Clea Caulcutt, ParisDutch mobile operators raise Internet fees in response to pending net neutrality lawThe three major Dutch mobile phone comapanies have significant upped the amount users must pay for mobile Internet access. Some experts say that this shows that the Dutch mobile market needs more competition.Now, this past summer, the lower house of the Dutch Parliament passed a bill that would make the Netherlands the second country in the world to enshrine the concept of net neutrality into law. That means that all data on the Internet, whether its video games, Skype calls, email or anything else, has to be treated equally by telecom and mobile providers. The bill is expected to pass the Upper House by the end of the year. But, in response, all three large mobile phone operators in the Netherlands have increased their overall prices for mobile Internet. In other words, while net neutrality might make the mobile Internet open, it may make it more expensive. Report: Peter Teffer, AmsterdamDenmark to voluntarily sequence DNA of all Faroe IslandersThe Danish government hopes that the new project will unlock genetic health information amongst the 50,000 people on the island nation.We've talked a bit about genetic sequencing on Spectrum in the past. That's the process by which scientists create a genetic map of a particular organism. Sequencing the human genome was completed 10 years ago. But since then, sequencing technology has gotten much cheaper, and much faster. This year alone, scientists worldwide have announced sequencing of various plants, ranging from the potato to marijuana. But given what we know about the links between our genes and our risks of inheriting and contracting certain diseases, many believe that individual genetic testing is the future of healthcare. Now, earlier this month, the Kingdom of Denmark announced that it would begin voluntary genetic sequencing of all 50,000 residents in one of its self-governing nations, the Faroe Islands. The Faroe Islands are a small archipelago located between Scotland and Iceland. The Faroe Islands are receiving support from scientists in the US, and from the UK. Report: Robin Powell, LondonBITKOM encourages women to pursue IT careersInformation and communications technology professionals are in high demand around the world. In Germany, more than 40,000 specialized workers are sought each year. But the number of unfilled vacancies remains stubbornly high. Now the Bitkom industry association is looking to harness the talents of women, who are severely under-represented in the sector.It's no secret that in the tech world, men tend to be more present than women. Just look at the heads of major tech companies: Google, Apple, Facebook, Twitter. All men. Even here in Europe, the heads of Deutsche Telekom, Skype, SoundCloud and Tuenti are men. But now, the German tech industry trade association, BITKOM, wants to change this trend. Just last week, BITKOM representatives met with members of the German government trying to get more women into the information technology sector. The organization says that it needs more women in the industry as a way to fill many of its vacant positions, and that may start at the university level. According to BITKOM, only 19 percent of women are computer science students in Germany. Report: Gerhard Schneibel, BerlinEU tries to curb e-wasteEach year in Europe millions of tones of electronic devices end up in landfill - that is, if they're not illegally dumped in poor countries.And finally today, let's talk about e-waste. Yes, your computer or your mobile phone may one day end up in landfill sites, if they're not disposed of properly, or worse, illegally shipped to developing countries for processing there. Multiply that across all of Europe, and you've got ahuge problem. For the last seven years, the European Commission has been trying to stop to the dumping of what they call "WEEE" – waste of electronic and electric equipment. But the problem is, most Europeans aren't recycling their e-waste fast enough. That's why the European Parliament's Environment Commitee met earlier this month in Rome. The commitee members say they want to make it easier for consumers to return small products and harder for unscrupulous operators to ship e-waste illegally out of the EU. Report: Megan Williams, Rome…

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Spectrum: Google's libel case, 3D printed blood vessels, Kosovo's wine industry, and a Bulgarian nicotine pill

2011-10-18 :: DW.DE | Deutsche Welle
Length: 30s

Later this month, a high German court will decide the fate of a Blogspot German-language blog that allegedly libelled a German plaintiff. Meanwhile, Fraunhofer scientists unveil the first 3D printed blood vessels. And, Kosovo's wine industry takes on fermentation science to improve their product. Finally, a UK scientist discusses his new study of a Soviet-era anti-smoking pill.Top German court to rule on Google libel caseA German man has sued Google in Germany in a libel case over a blog post alleging that he used a business credit card to pay for 'sex club bills' in Mallorca. Google argued that the case should be heard in the US.Late last month, judges at the German Federal Court of Justice in Karlsruhe heard a case argued between an unnamed plaintiff and Google over an online libel case. A German man has sued Google over a Blogspot blog entry - a blogging service owned by Google - claiming that he used a business credit card to pay for "sex club bills." The blog was generally about life on the Spanish island of Mallorca, where the plaintiff lived. Google lost two previous decisions of this case in lower German courts. The same court last year ruled the New York Times can be sued in Germany over statements on the newspaper's website if there is a strong connection to the country in an article. The court's decision is expected in this case at the end of this month. So to learn more, I spoke with Dominick Boecker, an Internet lawyer in Cologne. Interview: Cyrus FarivarGerman scientists unveil 3D printed blood vesselsThe new breakthrough could pave the way for artificially-created body parts that could significantly help modern medicine.Have you ever watched your printer spit out ink onto a piece of paper? It goes line by line, squirting ink as the paper moves through the roller. What if you could do that in three dimensions, building something from the ground up. And instead of ink, the nozzle would shoot plastic, or any other material. That's exactly what 3D printing is, and it's really been taking the tech world by storm. Earlier this year, we had a story on the show about the world's first plane that was made from a 3D printer. Well, in the latest development in the field, a team of German scientists have been working on a way to print artificial soft-tissue. As a result of their research, it may be possible to print things like human skin, muscles, organs and tendons in the next decade. Sounds like science fiction? Report: Jonathan Gifford, HannoverKosovo upgrades its winemaking industryWith the help of German advisors, Kosovar wine is now entering the modern area through fermentation science, and tighter production standards. A bottle of Kosovo pinot, anyone? You might not know this, but Kosovo has a long tradition of winemaking. While some compare the conditions of its wine country to burgundy or Bordeaux, Kosovo built a reputation as a place that made vast quantities of inexpensive blended table wine. And during communist Yugoslavia, Germans were big consumers of Kosovo wine. Now, with the help of Germany, a new crop of small vintners is taking an increasingly precise, scientific approach to their work to try to put Kosovo on the map as a place for fine wine. Report: Nate Tabak, Rahovec, KosovoSoviet-era pill helps smokers quit on the cheap, study findsIn a DW interview, a UK researcher says the Bulgarian-made pill is far cheaper than many others. Cytisine is primarily used in Russia, Poland, and other eastern European countries.In the September 29 edition of the New England Journal of Medicine, British and Polish scientists published one of the first new studies of an anti-smoking addiction treatment drug, cytisine, which has been used for decades in the former Soviet Union. The study shows that not only is the drug effective as a treatment to counter the effects of nicotine addiction, it is significantly cheaper than other current nicotine patches, pills and other options currently on the market. Commercially, cytisine is now produced by a pharmaceutical company in Bulgaria, and is available in many eastern European countries. To learn more about the new study, I spoke with the lead author, Robert West, a professor of health psychology at the University College London. Interview: Cyrus Farivar…

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Spectrum: Remembering Steve Jobs in Estonia, skin research, the German Pirate Party, and a new lie detector

2011-10-11 :: DW.DE | Deutsche Welle
Length: 30s

After the passing of Apple's co-founder, many fans remembered him both in-person and online - we speak with an Estonian entrepeneur who first used an Apple II in Soviet-era Estonia. Plus, the latest profile in our Future Now series. And, the Pirate Party takes to the Berlin state parliament. Meanwhile, British scientists upgrade the polygraph. Finally, a chat with a Dutch winner of the Ig Nobel.Estonian tech entrepeneur reflects on impact of Apple in Soviet eraIn a DW interview, Allan Martinson recalls that his first computer was an Apple II in Soviet-era Estonia. He says Apple has done for the world what 'Skype did for Estonia.'Now, last week, the tech world lost one of its living legends. Apple co-founder Steve Jobs died last Wednesday at the age of 56, due to pancreatic cancer. Memorials and vigils have been set up in his honor both at his home, at Apple headquarters in Cupertino, Calif., and also at Apple stores around the globe. Many in the technology community have continued a great outpour of rememberances and praise for the brilliant visionary. One of those people who reflected on Jobs' passing was Allan Martinson, a venture capitalist and tech entrepreneur in Estonia. To learn more about the impact Jobs had on him and on European technology, I called Allan Martinson on Skype. Interview: Cyrus FarivarFuture Now: Profile of skin cell researcherHeike Walles is a the head of the Cell and Tissue Engineering department at the Fraunhofer Institute for Interfacial Engineering and Biotechnology, in Stuttgart.And now, let's switch gears to something from the world of biology. In our continuing series, Future Now, we like to profile various German scientists around the world who are doing cutting-edge research. Funding for this series is provided by the German Ministry of Education and Research. Earlier this year, Heike Walles pioneered the first machine that can create human skin from stem cells. Normally, skin is grafted from other parts of the body. Report: Sean SinicoChanging German politics from the inside - and onlineThe upstart Pirate Party snagged almost one in 10 votes in Berlin's recent ballot, and the tech-savvy newcomers are setting their future targets. Priority one: more transparent government - with or without the Pirates.Let's switch gears again and come back to the tech world. Here in Germany, tech has entered the political world in an entirely new way. Last month, almost out of nowhere, this young party won 10 seats in Berlin's state parliament. In fact, the party has become political force to be reckoned with. Nationwide opinion polls suggest that the party enjoys support in around the eight percent range. The Pirate Party is a national branch of a political movement that first emerged in Sweden five years ago. It's primarily made up of tech-savvy young people who are seeking to make politics more transparent through the Internet. Just last week, the Party outlined its goals to the public in Berlin. Report: Uwe Hessler, BerlinUK scientists upgrade the lie detectorResearchers believe that by imaging someone's face, they can detect falsehoods from truths. Can you tell if someone’s lying? It’s harder than you might think, which is why investigators and border agencies sometimes look to science and technology for help. The polygraph - or plain old lie detector - has been around since 1921, but it’s an intrusive technique and many authorities don’t trust its results. Last month at the British Science Festival in Bradford, a team of scientists presented what they say is a more precise detector which can spot a lie just from the look on someone’s face. Report: Lars Bevanger, BradfordResearcher wins Ig Nobel prize for study of urination and self-controlIn a DW interview, Dutch scientist Mirjam Tuk explains how having an urge to urinate helps decision-making. In an experiment, she had groups drink water before choosing an immediate or a delayed financial reward.The three Nobel Prizes in the sciences - medicine, physics and chemistry were awarded last week. But, earlier this month, there was another semi-serious scientific prize given for unusual achievements in science. As its website states: "The Ig Nobel Prizes honor achievements that first make people laugh, and then make them think. The prizes are intended to celebrate the unusual, honor the imaginative — and spur people's interest in science, medicine, and technology." The Ig Nobel Prizes are given by the magazine, Annals of Improbable Research, and are co-sponsored by the Harvard-Radcliffe Society of Physics Students, the Harvard-Radcliffe Science Fiction Association and the Harvard Computer Society. One of this year's winners of the Ig Nobel for Medicine was Mirjam Tuk, a behavorial scientist and a professor at the University of Twente, in Enschede, the Netherlands. I called her up to learn more about her work. Interview: Cyrus Farivar…

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Spectrum: Voice pitch and ovulation, in-vitro meat, catalytic clothing, and rising SMS spam in the UK

2011-10-04 :: DW.DE | Deutsche Welle
Length: 30s

A new study from the German Primate Center says that women's voices rise slightly during their menstrual cycle. Meanwhile, Dutch scientists are working on how to create edible meat in the laboratory. And, engineers in the UK have figured out a way to contribute to cleaning the air through clothing. Plus, another profile in our Future Now series, and finally, SMS spam in the UK.German researchers hear what women's voices reveal about fertilityA new study investigates whether women's voices change during their menstrual cycle. The provocative, sexy science impacts whom and how we love and marry, something interesting to biologists and lovers alike. A new study raises fresh questions about whether women give off fertility clues. For a long time, scientists believed that human females don’t, and that affects how we live, love, reproduce and marry. Previous research has looked at ovulation signals in dress, behavior, and appearance. Report: Mark GarrisonDutch scientists pioneer early stages of in-vitro meatResearchers believe they can create environmentally-friendly edible meat from lab-based stem cells. Just across Germany's western border, in the Netherlands, a number of scientists are looking at an entirely different problem. How to reduce the world's dependency on livestock raised for meat -- and instead grow that same meat in a laboratory. They claim that out of one single animal’s tissue they could generate tons of meat. A few Dutch universities are leading this field of research. This science is heating up around Europe. In fact, the European Science Foundation held a conference on lab-grown meat in Sweden just last month. But, most scientists agree -- there’s a long way to go. Report: Cintia TaylorResearchers examine phenomenon of bat-spread diseaseA team of German scientists works with Ghanaian colleagues deep in the African jungle to try and reduce the risks that bats pose to humans’ health. And now, a story from our Future Now series that profiles German scientists doing interesting work around the globe. Funding for this series is provided by the German Ministry of Education and Research. His name is quoted time and again in textbooks and his work appears in the most renowned scientific journals. Christian Drosten is a rock star in the world of virology. In 2003, he identified the SARS pathogen and prevented the virus from spreading even faster. Now he’s looking at virus-carrying bats in Ghana. Reporter Aygül Cizecioglu was there with him and his team. Report: Sean SinicoCatalytic clothing could clean the airDesigners and scientists from the University of Sheffield have figured out a way that could put a small dent into air pollution in ordinary clothing. Here’s a no-brainer: the quality of the air we breath is very important to our health. Which is why we should worry about how many European cities are still battling dangerous levels of air pollution, mainly from traffic. So until everyone drives around in electric or hydrogen powered vehicles, science is looking for alternative ways to clean the air. Now, what if people who don't drive could do the job, simply by walking around? Well, in July researchers in the UK launched a project which aims to make our own clothes clean the air. Report: Lars Bevanger, SheffieldSpam text messages on the rise, UK agency saysAs people get wise to the ways of e-mail scams, more spam is landing on mobile phones. A British agency reported a recent spike in text message spam and says it's hard at work to keep mobiles free of unwanted messages.And finally today, an item on the BBC website caught my eye last month. The BBC reported that the Information Commissioner's Office (ICO) received 618 complaints about spam text messages between April 2010 and April 2011. That's not surprising. But what is unusual is that in the last five months, that figure has jumped to over 1,000. It's funny, because as I was researching this story, I came across the fact that just last week a new anti SMS spam bill went into effect in India. Now, no single mobile phone user can send more than 100 messages per day. Living in Germany I haven't ever received a spam text message, but apparently that's not the case for our friends up in the UK. So to learn more, I contact Simon Entwistle, the director of operations at the Information Commissioner's Office. Interview: Cyrus Farivar…

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Spectrum: Faster-than-light neutrinos, a 'smart bomb' way to fight cancer, and seismologists on trial

2011-09-27 :: DW.DE | Deutsche Welle
Length: 30s

An international team of physicists announce that they have found neutrinos that travel beyond the speed of light. Other scientists remain skeptical that this will re-define Einstein's theory of relativity. Meanwhile, in the UK, a new synthetic molecule hones in on cancerous cells. And finally, seismologists in Italy are facing manslaughter charges following the 2009 L'Aquila quake.Physicists urge caution in faster-than-light findingScientists are shocked at the announcement of superluminal neutrinos. If true, the result would upend one of the cornerstones of physics – Einstein's theory of relativity.An international team of scientists has recorded sub-atomic particles or neutrinos they say travel faster than the speed of light. If confirmed, this discovery could upend a century of scientific theories as to how the universe works. The findings are a result of a three-year collaboration between CERN, the European particle research center based in Geneva, Switzerland and the Gran Sasso Laboratory in central Italy. Report. Lisa Schlein, GenevaGerman physicist remains highly skeptical of new resultCaren Hagner of the University of Hamburg, and a member of the OPERA team, says that thinks there needs to be a lot more work done before Einstein's theories are discarded.Now, at the end of that previous story, you heard a piece of tape from Caren Hagner. As was mentioned, she's a physics professor at the University of Hamburg and is a member of the OPERA experiment. We spoke for a bit longer than for what we could use in that radio piece, but I thought I'd give you an abbreviated version of our interview. Interview: Cyrus FarivarSynthetic molecule acts as 'smart bomb' to target cancer, UK scientists sayA new scientific paper details a potentially revolutionary cancer-fighting technique. The next step, researchers note, is to begin human trials. Researchers in the UK say they’ve developed a new drug which could help treat cancer with extreme precision and few or no side-effects for the patient. The new paper by scientists from Bradford University was published this month in the journal Cancer Research. The technique involves modifying a toxin originally found in a crocus flower to make it kill only cancer cells and nothing else. If it works, this new treatment could significantly improve cancer patients’ quality of life. Report: Lars Bevanger, BradfordExclusive Spanish social network faces new challenges as it expandsAs Tuenti seeks to expand into the mobile market and into Latin America to go head-to-head with Facebook, some wonder how long its invitation-only model can last.In Spain, like most other countries, social networks such as Facebook have been a runaway success. But for younger Spaniards, there’s another site that dominates the market, called Tuenti. With a unique blend of American and Spanish creativity, the company has grown enormously in recent years. But as Tuenti moves into the mobile phone market, a key test lies ahead. Report: Guy Hedgecoe, MadridItalian seismologist says quake trial has 'scared' scientistsIn the wake of L'Aquila's 2009 earthquake, Italian scientists face charges of manslaughter. In a DW interview, an earthquake researcher worries about the broader implications of this legal case for his field.There's one other pretty important piece of science news from Europe that happened last week, and that was the opening of the trial of six Italian scientists in the central Italian city of L'Aquila. A devastating 6.3-magnitude earthquake hit the city in 2009, killing 309 people. In an unprecedented case, Italian prosecutors have charged the scientists with manslaughter and "negligence and imprudence," noting that the researchers "provided an approximate, generic and ineffective assessment of seismic activity risks as well as incomplete, imprecise and contradictory information." Attorneys for the defendants say that there simply is no accurate way to predict earthquakes. Scientists worldwide say the case could set a very dangerous legal precedent. But nothing more will happen until the end of this week, as the trial has been adjourned until October 1. To learn more about the trial and its potential impact on European and Italian seismology, I called up Warner Marzocchi. He's the chief scientist of the Seismology and Techno-physics Section at the National Institute of Geophysics and Volcanology in Rome. Interview: Cyrus Farivar…

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Spectrum: Vienna's 'liberating' WiFi, Serbian solar power, and how to make pasta from an Italian video game

2011-06-21
Length: 30m 0s

Austria's FunkFeuer draws the eye of the American government, while Germany opens its first cybersecurity center in Bonn. And, Marietje Schaake, a member of the European Parliament, explains the EU's digital agenda. Plus, Serbian students build a publicly…

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Spectrum: A 92-pound PC, an invisibility cloak, cyber-defense and digital security for human rights defenders

2011-06-14
Length: 30m 19s

We hear about a program in the UK to make its population more computer literate by providing training and cheap hardware. German scientists figured out the secret to invisibility and we hear from Kenneth Geers, an computer security expert about the state …

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Spectrum: A German E. coli update, the Italian one-way sound shield, a shooting coffee machine, and iZettle

2011-06-07
Length: 30m 19s

First, a British bioinformatician explains his contributions to understanding the E. coli outbreak in Germany. Then, Italian physicists prove that it should be possible to build a one-way sound barrier. Plus, Leipzig scientists look at how the brain analy…

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Spectrum: E. coli in Europe, Turkish Internet censorship, tactile memory research, and Foursquare-based ads

2011-05-31
Length: 30m 19s

A deadly strain of E. coli has claimed 14 lives in Germany, with hundreds infected across Europe. Meanwhile, Turkey is set to implement a new online filtration system. Plus, new research from Berlin reveals how to better remember tactile sensations. And f…

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Spectrum: Internet G8, European startups, Japan's robots, and Bribespot

2011-05-24
Length: 30m 19s

Paris hosts the eG8 for the digerati ahead of the G8 in Deauville. Meanwhile, what does it take to win a European startup competition? And, in our Future Now series, a German professor tries to bring Japan's expertise in robotics back to Germany. And fina…

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Spectrum: The Microsoft-Skype deal, salmonella research, smaller magnetic hard drives, and TransferWise

2011-05-17
Length: 30m 18s

The father of the Estonian Internet explains why the Microsoft deal is good for Skype. Plus, Austrian scientists create a detailed diagram of the 'needle complex,' of the salmonella bacterium. And, UK scientists have come up with a way to reduce the size …

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Spectrum: E-books on the rise in Europe, DeadDrop, tracking stolen bikes via GPS, and Crowdflow

2011-05-10
Length: 30m 18s

Major European publishers say that they're making more money off of e-books than ever before. Meanwhile, a new digital art project puts USB drives into walls. And, a British startup is trying to prevent bikes from getting stolen. Finally, two Berlin data …

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Spectrum: Germany's 2011 census, a Spanish e-book startup, Munich's new UAV, and the end of malaria?

2011-05-03
Length: 30m 18s

Germany's first census in over 20 years begins on May 9. And, 24Symbols, a Madrid startup, wants to make e-books a service, rather than a product. Plus, a new modular approach to UAVs in southern Germany. And finally, an Italian scientist wants to use gen…

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Spectrum: Controlling waves like particles, ferroelectric data storage, and a new report on Internet freedom

2011-04-26
Length: 30m 18s

Austrian physicists may have a new technique to focus waves as they would particles. Plus, German physicists are working on improving what could be a competitor to flash storage. And, Estonian developers improve voice-to-text software. Finally, speaking o…

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Spectrum: Re:publica 2011: Hatr.org, data visualizations, Readmill, open data and IMMI

2011-04-19
Length: 30m 19s

This week's show is all from the Re:publica Internet conference, held this past week in Berlin. We'll get into how to make money from hateful blog comments, trends in data visualization, a new social network for e-books, a new EU open data portal and fina…

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Spectrum: Non-alcoholic beer, the US Secret Service fights cybercrime in Estonia, bionic eyes and Re:publica

2011-04-12
Length: 30m 18s

Berlin researchers have created a new non-alcoholic beer that many say tastes just like regular beer. Plus, the American Secret Service will soon set up a four-man team in Tallinn. Meanwhile, a new 'bionic eye' for people with retinitis pigmentosa has jus…

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Spectrum: German and Estonian cyber defense, Austrian physics research, and Malte Spitz' mobile phone

2011-04-05
Length: 30m 18s

This month, Germany opened its Cyber Defense Center. Meanwhile, in Estonia, the Cyber Defense League, a volunteer force is incorporated into military structure. And, Vienna researchers try to reduce the dependency on rare-earth metals. Finally, German pol…

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Spectrum: A new Wikipedia study, Spain vs. Google, the EU's cookie law, and Skype's video phone booth

2011-03-29
Length: 30m 18s

The Wikimedia Foundation's new study on Wikipedia finds that it has very few female editors and has a harder time retaining new editors. Meanwhile, an ongoing case in Spain could redefine notions of privacy online. And, the EU wants to alert consumers to …

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Spectrum: A new umbilical cord blood bank, B-Keeper, an Estonian rare earth refinery and Hackerville, Romania

2011-03-22
Length: 30m 19s

A private medical center in Leipzig says it has created the world's first mobile umbilical cord blood bank. Plus, a British software patch helps rock bands keep time. And Silmet, in northeastern Estonia, is refining rare earth metals as fast as it can, gi…

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Spectrum: A seismology expert talks Japan, GPS in the UK, Prague's Science Cafe Week and botnets

2011-03-15
Length: 30m 18s

In the aftermath of Japan's 9.0 earthquake, we check in with a University of Liverpool professor of seismology. Also, the UK's Royal Academy of Engineering thinks that we rely too much on GPS. Plus, where have all the Czech scientists gone? And finally, M…

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Spectrum: CeBIT, Europe's Get Online Week, motorcycle safety, and the .SU domain suffix

2011-03-08
Length: 30m 17s

The European Union is trying to get hundreds of thousands of people online for the first time, new research in the UK is creating safety innovations for motorcycle riders, Germany's new cyber security policy, the Soviet Union's top-level domain that just …

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Spectrum: Cancer-sniffing dogs, mental health in the UK, Internet freedom and a CEBIT preview

2011-03-01
Length: 30m 18s

French researchers say that they can train dogs to sniff for prostate cancer, the effects of mental health problems in the UK, an Internet freedom conference in Frankfurt, a new German government policymaking wiki, and a preview of Europe's biggest tech t…

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Spectrum: From gene-altered mosquitoes to an Internet for robots

2011-02-22
Length: 30m 19s

A proposal of gene therapy to combat the spread of mosquito-borne diseases, smartphone apps that take advantage of open data, the perils of walking and texting at the same time and researchers who are building an Internet for robots. All that and more, th…

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Spectrum: Robot-assisted shaves, saucy memoirs, schools for the web savvy and smartphone apps on this week's Spectrum

2011-02-15
Length: 30m 18s

A former WikiLeaks staffer's new book is causing ripples for the whistle-blowing website's founder Julian Assange, innovative robots in Madrid are being used to assist disabled people, new schools in Paris are aiming to teach a new generation of online en…

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Spectrum: NATO embraces cloud computing, firefighting tech, dinosaur forensics, and a Q&A with Hasan Elahi

2011-02-08
Length: 30m 19s

The major international military alliance seeks to share more data in the cloud, and a new fire scanning device helps in smoky conditions, a new TV series in the UK aims to combine modern criminology tech to better understand dinosaurs, and finally, an i…

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Spectrum: Global Game Jam, Transcribe Bentham, coin authenticating tech, and a Q&A with Evgeny Morozov

2011-02-01
Length: 30m 19s

Programmers from around the world create playable video games within 48 hours, and how technology is changing the world of coin counterfeiting and authenticating, digitizing the complete works of 19th century British philosopher Jeremy Bentham, and a chat…

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Spectrum: European Data Protection: Kosovo, Latvia and France, with Q&As from Germany and the Netherlands

2011-01-25
Length: 30m 18s

On the 30th anniversary of the Council of Europe's "Convention 108," establishing the right to privacy and data protection, we take a look at what these concepts mean around different parts of the continent. New laws have been put into place in both Kosov…

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Spectrum: Augmented Reality in Europe, Soundcloud, and a QA with Jacob Groshek

2011-01-18
Length: 30m 19s

Augmented reality is rapidly on the rise as European startups are leading the way. Also, as Berlin's SoundCloud now has two million users and $10 million in new funding, it faces new challenges. And finally, on the annivesary of US Secretary of State Hila…

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Spectrum: Satellite Sentinel monitors South Sudan, a neutrino detector, UK net neutrality, and crowdfunding

2011-01-11
Length: 30m 19s

A project founded by George Clooney will acquire, analyze and distribute satellite images of Sudan. University of Bonn researchers work on the completion of the world's largest particle detector in Antarctica. Plus, BT unveils a new program that some are …

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Spectrum: Berlin's Chaos Communication Congress, a new UK network map, and diagnosing Alzheimer's disease

2011-01-04
Length: 30m 19s

Berlin hosted the 27th annual Chaos Computer Club conference this past week, UK scientists unveil patterns of human connections based on telephone conversations, a look back at technology in 2010, and a profile of a German scientist who may have a new way…

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Spectrum: Berlin's new emotional robots, a Swiss startup goes to Washington, PirateLeaks, and more

2010-12-28
Length: 30m 19s

New robots being worked on in Berlin have increased finger and emotional sensitivity, and RapidShare lobbies American lawmakers to not be liable as a hub of illegal file-sharing, the Czech Pirate Party launches PirateLeaks, and finally, a new Bonn stage f…

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Spectrum: Europe's parliamentarians take on Facebook, Eastern European IT outsourcing, and Lisbon's smart grid

2010-12-21
Length: 30m 19s

MEPs are being encouraged to use social networking as a way to connect with their constituents, IT outsourcing to Central and Eastern Europe has reached record levels, Lisbon rolls out its new smart electrical grid, and Toulouse unveils new parking spot s…

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Spectrum: Europe's first bionic hand, EU WiFi Paradise, a massive Czech laser, and Danish anonymity online

0000-00-00 :: DW-WORLD.DE | Deutsche Welle
Length: 30s

After nearly a year with a bionic hand, a Vienna man reports that his replacement works far better than expected. Plus, an interview with the former Bulgarian FM, who wants the EU to sponsor free WiFi. And, the Extreme Light Infrastructure project gets un…

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Spectrum: Autonomous vehicles, Vienna's pregnancy lab, booming biogas, and how Slovakian news sites make money

0000-00-00 :: DW-WORLD.DE | Deutsche Welle
Length: 30s

The world's experts in robotic cars met earlier this month in Germany. Plus, as a way to get around Austria's strict rules for pregnant scientists, one Vienna lab lets these women continue to do research. And, biogas plants are booming in Germany. And fin…

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Spectrum: More efficient nuclear power, QR code coins, a chemicals in space and the future of NASA's employees

0000-00-00 :: DW-WORLD.DE | Deutsche Welle
Length: 30s

We hear from English scientists who are working on an alternative to typical uranium-fueled nuclear power plants. In the Netherlands, the first QR code-imprinted coin means new methods of interacting with currency. And, an interview about the recent disco…

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Spectrum: The WHO's new HIV guidelines, new emergency communications gear, stem cell research, and potato DNA

0000-00-00 :: DW-WORLD.DE | Deutsche Welle
Length: 30s

The World Health Organization has released new guidelines to combat high rates of HIV amongst gay people. Meanwhile, London researchers turn WiFi into an emergency communications tool. And, German researchers take the next step in stem cell research. Fina…

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Spectrum: Drones, the Russian space program, Fair Phones, Lisbon cellular research, and MyFlickbooks.com

0000-00-00 :: DW-WORLD.DE | Deutsche Welle
Length: 30s

German and other scholars are lobbying against the use of drones. How Russia's space program is evolving. Plus, a new Dutch initiative to create "fair trade" mobile phones. And, new research out of Lisbon may shed some light as to how tumors form. Finally…

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Spectrum: Google's Internet Institute, TVShack.net, Bonn's robots and a Q&A about Bitcoin

0000-00-00 :: DW-WORLD.DE | Deutsche Welle
Length: 30s

As a way to appease Germany, Google has funded a new academic Internet research center in Berlin. Meanwhile, the US is trying to extradite a British student accused of running a pirate online TV website from the UK. And, the University of Bonn took home t…

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Spectrum: Ireland's surgical robots, new WHO recommendations, UK copyright reform and Iceland's constitution

0000-00-00 :: DW-WORLD.DE | Deutsche Welle
Length: 29s

A Cork hospital is promoting a new robot for gynegological surgery. Meanwhile, the WHO no longer recommends traditional blood tests for TB. And, one Austrian museum is examining the modern-day effects on anthropology collections. Plus, ripping MP3s is now…

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Spectrum: Chaos Communication Camp, the Czech Pirate Party, London's Silicon Roundabout and new E. coli funds

0000-00-00 :: DW-WORLD.DE | Deutsche Welle
Length: 30s

Full coverage of the quadrennial Chaos Communication Camp outside of Berlin. Plus, a new Prague-based website that provides links to pirated versions of movies. And, East London's new tech hub. Finally, an interview about new EU research money designed to…

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Spectrum: Gamescom, preference aggregated algorithms, synthetic biology and Dutch-made bulletproof skin

0000-00-00 :: DW-WORLD.DE | Deutsche Welle
Length: 30s

Cologne hosts the world's biggest video game convention. Meanwhile, newer German social media startups are using information science to use preferential data. Plus, from our Future Now series a German synthetic biologist in Basel. And finally, a Dutch bio…

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Spectrum: A hotel in space, Latvia's electric jacket, botnet research, and a controversial French iPhone app

0000-00-00 :: DW-WORLD.DE | Deutsche Welle
Length: 30s

A Russian firm announces plans for a space hotel to open in 2016. Plus, Latvian researchers have developed an electricity-generating jacket. An Iranian researcher in the Netherlands says ISPs have a bigger role to play in fighting botnets. Meanwhile, is '…

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Spectrum: The CCC at 30, higher data transfer rates, WheelMap.org, and smoking research

0000-00-00 :: DW-WORLD.DE | Deutsche Welle
Length: 29s

Germany's Chaos Computer Club turns 30 this week. Meanwhile, Fraunhofer researchers are pushing the limits of data transfer over LEDs. And, one year on, an online map helps wheelchairs users worldwide. And finally, Austrian scientists are working on a way…

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Spectrum: Future gadgets - future design

0000-00-00 :: DW-WORLD.DE | Deutsche Welle
Length: 30s

The world's biggest tech firms gather in Berlin for the IFA consumer electronics trade show while in Southampton researchers take 3D printing into the realms of reality. What does it mean for the future of engineering and design, and why do some old techn…

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Spectrum: Plant-based ice cream, the end of France's Minitel, Manabalss.lv, and quantum physics research

0000-00-00 :: DW-WORLD.DE | Deutsche Welle
Length: 30s

German researchers have made a cream-like ice cream from the lupin plant. Plus, France Telecom announces the end of their proto-Web terminal, the Minitel. And, a new Latvian site lets citizens propose new laws to parliament. Finally, a Danish physicist sa…

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Spectrum: Digital conservation, robots, Facebook in Germany and Bitcoin

0000-00-00 :: DW-WORLD.DE | Deutsche Welle
Length: 30s

On this week's show we look at the ephemeral nature of digital art, the latest developments for Facebook in Germany, robots in space and an interview with Sweden's Pirate Party founder Rick Falkvinge on Bitcoin.Facebook's travails in GermanyFacebook hasnâ…

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Spectrum: Hadopi, Net Neutrality in the Netherlands, Faroe Islands DNA, German women in IT, and EU e-waste

0000-00-00 :: DW-WORLD.DE | Deutsche Welle
Length: 30s

One year on, the controversial anti-piracy law in France has issued three warnings to 60 users - that could lead to a loss of Internet access. Meanwhile, the effects of pending net neutrality legislation. And, Denmark will set out to voluntarily sequence …

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Spectrum: Google's libel case, 3D printed blood vessels, Kosovo's wine industry, and a Bulgarian nicotine pill

0000-00-00 :: DW-WORLD.DE | Deutsche Welle
Length: 30s

Later this month, a high German court will decide the fate of a Blogspot German-language blog that allegedly libelled a German plaintiff. Meanwhile, Fraunhofer scientists unveil the first 3D printed blood vessels. And, Kosovo's wine industry takes on ferm…

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Spectrum: Remembering Steve Jobs in Estonia, skin research, the German Pirate Party, and a new lie detector

0000-00-00 :: DW-WORLD.DE | Deutsche Welle
Length: 30s

After the passing of Apple's co-founder, many fans remembered him both in-person and online - we speak with an Estonian entrepeneur who first used an Apple II in Soviet-era Estonia. Plus, the latest profile in our Future Now series. And, the Pirate Party …

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Spectrum: Voice pitch and ovulation, in-vitro meat, catalytic clothing, and rising SMS spam in the UK

0000-00-00 :: DW-WORLD.DE | Deutsche Welle
Length: 30s

A new study from the German Primate Center says that women's voices rise slightly during their menstrual cycle. Meanwhile, Dutch scientists are working on how to create edible meat in the laboratory. And, engineers in the UK have figured out a way to cont…

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Spectrum: Faster-than-light neutrinos, a 'smart bomb' way to fight cancer, and seismologists on trial

0000-00-00 :: DW-WORLD.DE | Deutsche Welle
Length: 30s

An international team of physicists announce that they have found neutrinos that travel beyond the speed of light. Other scientists remain skeptical that this will re-define Einstein's theory of relativity. Meanwhile, in the UK, a new synthetic molecule h…

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Spectrum: London Cyber Conference, Manchester police use social media, the brain on video games, and more

0000-00-00 :: DW-WORLD.DE | Deutsche Welle
Length: 30s

Delegates from around the globe converge in London to confab about Internet policy. Meanwhile, Manchester city police show other European law enforcement how using social media has worked for them. Plus, an interview with a Dutch artist who has rendered G…

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Spectrum: Mars500 'lands' in Moscow, the future of cars, Internet freedom, and 'Beat the Censor'

0000-00-00 :: DW-WORLD.DE | Deutsche Welle
Length: 30s

A simulated mission to Mars finally ends after 17 months. Meanwhile, a German scientist in Karlsruhe outlines his work on a new type of automated cars. Plus, Dutch MEP Marietje Schaake comes down hard against European companies that sell online surveillan…

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Spectrum: Radiocarbon dating and fat cells, 17th-century French communications, NFC in the UK and the ARM chip

0000-00-00 :: DW-WORLD.DE | Deutsche Welle
Length: 30s

In a new paper, Vienna scientists detail how to use the 'bomb-peak method' to understand the mechanics of cellular biology. Plus, a French professor explains today's parallels with 400-year-old Parisian history. And, as London gears up for the 2012 Olympi…

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Spectrum: Keeping late-night guards awake, facial recognition in the UK, Munich's IT summit, and Carrier IQ

0000-00-00 :: DW-WORLD.DE | Deutsche Welle
Length: 29s

In Riga, a security company has developed a cheap and novel way to make sure night-owl workers don't doze off. Plus, Realeyes is watching what you're watching. And, the German government holds its 6th annual IT Summit in Munich. And finally, Bavarian priv…

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Spectrum: Russian elections, Prishtina Startup Weekend, IPv6 in Germany and Estonian Air's Skype check-in

0000-00-00 :: DW-WORLD.DE | Deutsche Welle
Length: 29s

Russia held parliamentary elections this past weekend, which saw some popular websites be hit with cyberattacks. That may be a preview of next year's presidential elections. Meanwhile, in Kosovo, young entrepreneurs gather for Prishtina Startup Weekend. P…

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Spectrum: Keeping late-night guards awake, facial recognition in the UK, Munich's IT summit, and Carrier IQ

0000-00-00 :: DW-WORLD.DE | Deutsche Welle
Length: 29s

In Riga, a security company has developed a cheap and novel way to make sure night-owl workers don't doze off. Plus, Realeyes is watching what you're watching. And, the German government holds its 6th annual IT Summit in Munich. And finally, Bavarian priv…

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Spectrum: A cellular 'operating system,' European e-books, solar power chargers, and Dutch data protection

0000-00-00 :: DW-WORLD.DE | Deutsche Welle
Length: 30s

UK-based scientists are working on a way to create a standardized platform for synthetic biology. Meanwhile, a Norwegian business professor laments the sorry state of e-books. And, a Berlin startup launches a social media-fueled solar-powered gadget charg…

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Spectrum: The Future Prize, the home of tomorrow, Russia's online reactions to unrest and an update from CERN

0000-00-00 :: DW-WORLD.DE | Deutsche Welle
Length: 30s

A Dresden engineer wins Germany's top technological research prize, while, up in Hamburg, in northern Germany, another set of engineers are building the house of the future. What the Russian government is doing, or not doing, on the Internet and at CERN, …

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Spectrum: Nails on a chalkboard, robotic flocks, computing climate change, and London's cabbies' brains

0000-00-00 :: DW-WORLD.DE | Deutsche Welle
Length: 6s

German and Austrian scientists examine why the screeching sound of nails on a chalkboard is so grating. Plus, engineers in Switzerland have developed small drones with the ability to flock together like birds. And, in our Future Now series, a huge computi…

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Spectrum: Hacking Dutch transit cards, naked mole rats, brain-powered driving, and downloading in Switzerland

0000-00-00 :: DW-WORLD.DE | Deutsche Welle
Length: 30s

A Dutch journalist is charged with fraud after having exposed flaws in the new Chipkaart. Meanwhile, Berlin researchers examine what the naked mole rat can teach us about pain medication. And, Swiss engineers work on creating a brain-car interface. Finall…

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Spectrum: Buying clothes online, TechHub Riga, the end of antibiotic resistance? And, Alzheimer's research

0000-00-00 :: DW-WORLD.DE | Deutsche Welle
Length: 30s

UPCload, a Berlin startup, wants to make it easier to acqure new threads on the Internet. Plus, a new co-working space in Latvia hopes to kickstart the Baltic startup scene. And, new research out of Graz shows that it may be possible to eliminate anti-bio…

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Spectrum: Groupon geo-localization, British courts go digital, and the foldable car, Hiriko

0000-00-00 :: DW-WORLD.DE | Deutsche Welle
Length: 29s

Deutsche Telekom and Groupon announce a partnership to sell localized discount deals. Meanwhile, British defense attorneys rail against new digitization plans for the legal system. And, Basque and American engineers unveil an electric car in Brussels.Grou…

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Spectrum: A hotel in space, Latvia's electric jacket, botnet research, and a controversial French iPhone app

0000-00-00 :: DW.DE | Deutsche Welle
Length: 30s

A Russian firm announces plans for a space hotel to open in 2016. Plus, Latvian researchers have developed an electricity-generating jacket. An Iranian researcher in the Netherlands says ISPs have a bigger role to play in fighting botnets. Meanwhile, is '…

x

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Spectrum: The CCC at 30, higher data transfer rates, WheelMap.org, and smoking research

0000-00-00 :: DW.DE | Deutsche Welle
Length: 29s

Germany's Chaos Computer Club turns 30 this week. Meanwhile, Fraunhofer researchers are pushing the limits of data transfer over LEDs. And, one year on, an online map helps wheelchairs users worldwide. And finally, Austrian scientists are working on a way…

x

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Spectrum: Future gadgets - future design

0000-00-00 :: DW-WORLD.DE | Deutsche Welle
Length: 30s

The world's biggest tech firms gather in Berlin for the IFA consumer electronics trade show while in Southampton researchers take 3D printing into the realms of reality. What does it mean for the future of engineering and design, and why do some old techn…

x

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Spectrum: Plant-based ice cream, the end of France's Minitel, Manabalss.lv, and quantum physics research

0000-00-00 :: DW-WORLD.DE | Deutsche Welle
Length: 30s

German researchers have made a cream-like ice cream from the lupin plant. Plus, France Telecom announces the end of their proto-Web terminal, the Minitel. And, a new Latvian site lets citizens propose new laws to parliament. Finally, a Danish physicist sa…

x

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Spectrum: Gamescom, preference aggregated algorithms, synthetic biology and Dutch-made bulletproof skin

0000-00-00 :: DW-WORLD.DE | Deutsche Welle
Length: 30s

Cologne hosts the world's biggest video game convention. Meanwhile, newer German social media startups are using information science to use preferential data. Plus, from our Future Now series a German synthetic biologist in Basel. And finally, a Dutch bio…

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Spectrum

Spectrum is a half-hour weekly with developments in the fields of science and technology. From advances that will change our lives to offbeat oddities, our team of reporters around the world keeps you up to date.

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