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Computing

EmTech: Google’s Internet “Loon” Balloons Will Ring the Globe within a Year

Google X research lab boss Astro Teller says experimental wireless balloons will deliver Internet access throughout the Southern Hemisphere by next year.

Mobile

This Phone App Knows If You’re Depressed

Motion, audio, and location data harvested from a smartphone can be analyzed to accurately predict stress or depression.

Computing

Robots That Learn Through Repetition, Not Programming

A startup says getting a robot to do things should be less about writing code and more like animal training.

Computing

Smart Headlight Illuminates the Road without Blinding Other Drivers

Computerized headlights could eliminate glare from oncoming cars while improving visibility.

Materials

Solar City and Tesla Hatch a Plan to Lower the Cost of Solar Power

Tesla and Solar City say their vast manufacturing operations will make solar the cheapest source of electricity in the United States.

Energy

U.N. Predicts New Global Population Boom

A new study says the population could hit 12 billion by 2100, though it doesn’t take into account the effects of climate change, food shortages, disease, or conflict.

Computing

A Grand Quest to Create Virtual Life

The creator of a much-loved game for nurturing virtual creatures is developing a new playpen for more advanced beasts.

Computing

Technology Stalled in 1970

Peter Thiel says he’s trying to get entrepreneurs to go after bigger problems than the ones Silicon Valley is chasing.

Materials

Turbocharging Photosynthesis to Feed the World

A faster enzyme for turning CO2 into sugar is a key step toward much higher crop yields.

Biomedicine

Radical New DNA Sequencer Finally Gets into Researchers’ Hands

A DNA sequencer the size of a cell phone could change where, and how, gene research occurs.