By Amber Williams
Posted 01.20.2012 at 12:03 pm 5 Comments
Last August in Huanchaquito, a town on the arid northern coast of Peru, the winter winds uncovered six human skulls. A villager alerted Yale University archaeologist Oscar Gabriel Prieto Burmester to the find, and soon thereafter Burmester and his team had unearthed the ancient remains of 43 children and 76 llamas, and not a single adult—a sacrificial site. Preserved by the area’s dry climate, the 900-year-old mummies date to the age of the pre-Columbian Chimú culture.
What would happen if robots were part of your daily life? For us adults, the answer might include sandwich expeditions, help with laundry, cleaning, tricking our friends ... and so on. But kids imagine a whole different level of companionship.
Monday, October 31, is the deadline to enter our education challenge. We’re looking for fun, inexpensive lesson plans that teachers can use to teach cutting-edge concepts to students in grades 6 through 8. If you think you’ve got a great way to communicate the fundamental principles of next-gen research, enter now. You don’t have to be a teacher — anyone can get involved, and if your lesson plan is chosen, you’ll win $5000, and we’ll use your lesson plan to create a teaching guide for use in school across the country.
Police who track pedophiles have to do some pretty thankless work once they have their perps — they must sift through large volumes of videos and images to find the illegal ones, and catalog what they’ve found. Now a new detection algorithm could make their work a little easier, by helping to spot files containing child pornography.
By Susannah F. Locke
Posted 07.29.2010 at 4:36 pm 0 Comments
At least one group of seventh graders is happy to go back to class this month: students at New York City’s Quest to Learn, the first school that teaches solely through game-inspired lessons. Its teaching style is based on the concept (reported by Popular Science in January) that kids absorb more information if they learn it while solving complex tasks, rather than just reading about it and completing context-free problem sets.
Sometimes, you want Big Brother to be watching. In that spirit, South Korean officials are turning to GPS technology to keep their kids safe from criminals, AFP reports.
Starting in October, about 1,200 elementary school children in Anyang City, south of Seoul, will receive matchbox-sized GPS-embedded beepers. The devices can notify authorities of the kids' location and activate surveillance cameras.
Cambodian children grow up in a nation where millions of landmines left by decades of civil war have continued to cripple and kill hundreds of people each year. Now they could get a life-saving lesson from a video game developed by Michigan State University researchers.
In the game, players navigate photos of Cambodian jungle landscapes in search of photos for several adorable cartoon pets -- no cartoon landmine characters here. The point of the maze-like game is to train players and embed warning signals about landmines in their minds.
Kids these days. It seems that they were born into a society that spends 90 percent of its time staring at glowing rectangles, much to the chagrin of parents everywhere. Playing outside just seems like too low-tech of an option for them to bother wasting their time with. However, Bulpadok, an Australian app company, might convince them to take the screen with them outdoors, with The Hidden Park, a new iPhone-based scavenger hunt.
There was a time when carting a plastic lunchbox to your high school cafeteria was a popularity death knell. The ubiquitous paper bag was more fashionable, but in our new, green-conscious era, maybe it’s time for the lunchbox to make a comeback. Though schools probably can’t impose outright bans on paper bags, they can make efforts at generating less waste. Without the resources to rebuild every school out there with the most sophisticated green technology, however, the pertinent question is: How can pre-existing school buildings become more environmentally friendly?
By the time they are two years old, most children from middle and upper-income families have been vaccinated against polio, mumps, measles, rubella and tetanus. But many low-income children--too many, according to the Center for Disease Control (CDC) and the Vaccines for Children Program-- have not. A new study examining the results of the U.S. National Immunization Survey carried out between 1995 and 2007 showed "significant disparities in timely vaccination coverage...
One little yellow robot is a hot contender for cutest medical device
By Val Wang
Posted 04.10.2009 at 3:18 pm 5 Comments
Two years ago, a yellow spongiform robot named Keepon became a minor YouTube sensation when one of its creators programmed it to do a squishy, twisty dance in time to the Spoon song "I Turn My Camera On." The video has garnered more than 2 million hits. Now Keepon's keepers, Marek Michalowski, a Ph.D student in robotics at Carnegie Mellon University, and Hideki Kozima of Miyagi University in Japan, are turning Keepon's attention to a more serious task: to study how children with autism spectrum disorders (ASD) interact socially and to see if the robot may be able to help in therapy.
It seems like every couple of years there are some new baby rules. Don’t lay them down on their stomachs. Don’t lay them down on their backs. Do yoga while pregnant. Don’t do yoga while pregnant. Breast feed. Don’t breast feed. In light of a new study, the latest piece of baby advice you might hear from your doctor may be “don’t conceive in the spring or summer.”
We’ve all heard the news: We’re getting fat. Americans are inactive, McDonald’s-eating smokers with diabetes, right? That’s certainly a generalization, but you know what they say. Where there’s smoke, there’s fire. Tons of research dollars have been poured into studying this historic obesity epidemic. While some may imagine that obesity begins once a child is tall enough to reach the top shelf where mom and dad keep the cookies, a new study points to an even earlier age that jump starts obesity: infancy.
Parents of hyperactive kindergarteners, beware! According to researchers from the Université de Montréal in Canada, your inattentive five-year-old may be prone to develop a gambling addiction later in life. And when I say later in life, I mean your child might begin participating in recreational gambling as early as middle school.
Five amazing, clean technologies that will set us free, in this month's energy-focused issue. Also: how to build a better bomb detector, the robotic toys that are raising your children, a human catapult, the world's smallest arcade, and much more.