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The VuePod: Powerful enough for a gamer, made for an engineer
(Brigham Young University) It's like a scene from a gamer's wildest dreams: 12 high-definition, 55-inch 3-D televisions all connected to a computer capable of supporting high-end, graphics-intensive gaming.On the massive screen, images are controlled by a Wii remote that interacts with a Kinnect-like Bluetooth device (called SmartTrack), while 3-D glasses worn by the user create dizzying added dimensions.

Funding ended for University of California High-Performance AstroComputing Center
(University of California High-Performance AstroComputing Center) Funding has not been renewed for the five-year-old University of California High-Performance AstroComputing Center (UC-HiPACC). UC-HiPACC fostered collaborations of astrophysicists across the UC system and three DOE labs, including attracting students and funding. 'Its loss is devastating,' says director Joel Primack. Alternative funding is now being sought. A No-Cost Extension to the grant through March 31, 2015, will support limited operations: the pioneering AGORA research effort, preparation of a five-year report, and crafting of proposals.

Oil palm -- a modeled crop
(James Cook University) Australian scientists have developed a model for oil palm cultivation, aimed at helping growers of the crop maximize the yields of their plantations, while minimizing detrimental environmental impacts.

Computer network rivals primate brain in object recognition
(PLOS) Primates visually recognize and determine the category of an object even at a brief glance, and to date, this behavior has been unmatched by artificial systems. A study publishing this week in PLOS Computational Biology has found that the latest artificial 'deep neural network' performs as well as the primate brain at object recognition.

Mutations need help from aging tissue to cause leukemia
(University of Colorado Denver) University of Colorado Cancer Center study published today in the journal Aging shows that in addition to DNA damage, cancer depends on the slow degradation of tissue that surrounds cancer cells, something that naturally comes with aging.

Five new Research Units, 4 new Humanities Centres for Advanced Studies
(Deutsche Forschungsgemeinschaft) The Deutsche Forschungsgemeinschaft is establishing five new Research Units and four new Humanities Centres for Advanced Studies. This was decided by the DFG Senate in Bonn. The research collaborations will enable researchers to pursue current and pressing issues in their research areas and establish innovative work directions.

Science's top 10 breakthroughs of 2014
(American Association for the Advancement of Science) The Rosetta spacecraft caught up with the comet known as 67P/Churyumov-Gerasimenko beyond Mars this August, and its preliminary results--along with the studies it will allow in the near-future -- top this year's list of the most important scientific breakthroughs, according to the editors of Science. This annual list of groundbreaking scientific achievements, selected by Science and its international nonprofit publisher, AAAS, also includes groundbreaking advances in medicine, robotics, synthetic biology, and paleontology, to name a few.

Time management skills keep animals primed for survival
(PLOS) Many animals may have a previously under-appreciated ability to make up for lost time with more effort, according to new research publishing this week in PLOS Computational Biology.

'Research of the very highest quality': DFG awards 2015 Leibniz Prizes
(Deutsche Forschungsgemeinschaft) The new recipients of Germany's most prestigious research funding prize have been announced. In Bonn today, the Joint Committee of the Deutsche Forschungsgemeinschaft decided to award the 2015 Leibniz Prize to eight researchers. The recipients of the prize were selected by the Nominations Committee from 136 nominees. Of the eight new prizewinners, three are from the natural sciences, three from the humanities and social sciences, and two from the life sciences. Each will receive prize money of 2.5 million euros.

Grant funds national expansion of watershed modeling website for science curriculum
(Stroud Water Research Center) Stroud Water Research Center, in collaboration with the Concord Consortium and Millersville University of Pennsylvania, received a $2.9 million dollar grant from the National Science Foundation to dramatically expand Model My Watershed, part of the WikiWatershed suite of online tools. This application allows users to explore how land use affects stream ecology and hydrology.

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