In a world first, scientists grow new ears for children with microtia

In a landmark study for the tissue engineering community, scientists have successfully grown and reconstructed new ears for children born with a birth defect.

Photo from study, patient's face blurred to protect identity

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Surprising Science

A Ukrainian Robot Can Print This $64,000 House In Just 8 Hours

It takes an average of 7.5 months to build a single-family home. A Ukrainian startup has cut that timeframe down to just 8 hours.

Image: PassivDom

It takes an average of 7.5 months to build a new home. Even the smallest of domiciles—cabins, micro homes—usually take months to construct. But the Ukrainian startup PassivDom has cut that time down to as few as 8 hours by using a 3D-printing robot to print autonomous, mobile homes for $64,000 each. 

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Technology & Innovation

Ultrafast Holographic Printer Creates 3D Objects in Mere Seconds

Rather than one layer at a time, this method creates an entire object all at once, using lasers.

Volumetric printed object. Credit: Shusteff et al., Science Advances.

Imagine this, you see something online you just have to have, like a rugged smartphone case emblazoned with your favorite character. You order it and instead of waiting for it to be delivered, your 3D printer fashions it for you, to your exact specifications, in seconds. Why don’t we have this right now? 3D printers can take hours or even days to create an object, making such a scenario difficult to implement.

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Surprising Science

Where Does Reality End and Imagination Begin? In the Future, We Might Not Know

Reality is whatever your body believes. Virtual reality knows how to hack that.

"The line between what it means to be dreaming and what it means to be awake is going to become very interesting," says Jordan Greenhall, CEO of Neurohacker. Virtual reality is perhaps the easiest way to conceive of that concept right now, but it's just one piece in a much larger body of accelerated technology on the horizon. Our sense of reality, how our self fits into our perception of the world, can be easily shaken through sensory input manipulation—and in very low-tech and low-quality ways. So image what a sophisticated approach will bring. VR and its relatives will be able to hack our mind in ways we will be helpless to resist—dream up an object and one day it might be 3D printed in quasi-real-time, straight from your imagination. Of course, there are enormous ethical implications. If we think social media encroaches on our lives now, we are not prepared for a future in which dreaming and waking look eerily similar. How will it change election campaigns, personal relationships, will you responsible for your own addictions and behaviors in this future? How will we establish the first rules of consent—hopefully not the hard way. VR will disrupt our very deepest construct: how we see and react to reality. If we are thoughtful about design and ethics, Greenhall hopes this radically upgrade our potential, rather than downgrade how we relate to one another.

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Technology & Innovation

10 Human Body Modifications You Can Expect in the next Decade

You are already a cyborg! Here's 10 ways you could merge even more with technology in the coming decade.

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