Categories
Science Trending News

Covid-19 leaves some people with permanent lung damage

Covid-19 is already disrupting people lives. While we comfort ourselves that the effects are temporary this potential for permanent damage has sent some ripples in the community. Those infected with coronavirus may be left with permanent lung damage.

Patients are claiming to have difficulty breathing and coughing months after treated for Covid-19. Doctors say that chest scans of these patients reveal irreversible lung damage that cannot be treated.

The number of people affected is not yet known, but estimates are as high as one in five who require intensive care treatment for Covid-19.

Permanent damage is sometimes seen after other types of chest infections that can cause lung inflammation similar to coronaviruses, such as flu and pneumonia.

James Chalmers, a chest physician and consultant at the British Lung Foundation, says, “We’ve always seen this before – what’s  different is the scale it this”.

Previously, his clinic in Scotland would have seen the wound occurring once or twice a year after a lung infection

In a study in Italy, which was one of the first European countries to suffer coronavirus, doctors are scanning people’s lungs three months after becoming ill. While full results have not yet been revealed, Paolo Spagnolo at the University of Padua estimates that 15 to 20 percent of those treated in intensive care at their hospital for Covid-19 have scarring.

In most people, coronavirus causes only mild symptoms, but in some it leads to severe lung inflammation and a burst of immune signaling chemicals, creating a complication called a cytokine storm if this symptom is left undiagnosed, inflammation begins to cause scarring of the lungs.

This scarring of the lungs is called fibrosis and it is irreversible. All people can do is try to improve their aerobic fitness to compensate for their reduced lung function and learn to cope with respiratory problems.

Along with scarring, there may be other mechanisms that cause long-term problems. Severe Covid-19 poses a risk of blood clotting, so people develop small clots in the blood vessels of their lungs.

To compensate, new blood vessels develop, but can become disordered, causing high blood pressure in their lungs which reduces your oxygen intake. 

This phenomenon is not only confined to ventilated patients. Severe COVID has the potential for permanent lung damage but those people who were ventilated have been more prone to long term complications.

Categories
Enterprise Secrets Future Technology Science Trending News

“We built a powerful quantum computer”, says Honeywell

Honeywell, a company known for building control systems for homes, businesses, and aircraft, claims to have built the most powerful quantum computer ever.

Though other researchers are skeptical about its power, the company says, it is a step towards integrating quantum computing into its everyday tasks.

Honeywell measured the capabilities of its computer using a metric called Quantum Volume by IBM. This takes into account the number of quantum bits – or qubits – that the computer has, their error rate, how long the system can compute before the qubits stop working, and some other key properties.

“About 220 different algorithms will be used to measure quantum volume,” says Tony Uttley, president of Honeywell Quantum Solutions.

Honeywell’s quantum computer has a volume of 64, twice the next highest quantum volume to be recorded, which was measured in an IBM quantum computer.

“Quantum computing will support for business challenges and scientific calculations and the feature will support also autonomous car improvements and more affordable speed”

said Chief Executive Officer Darius Adamczyk and Honeywell Chairman

Like other quantum computers, it can eventually be useful for calculations that deal with large amounts of data.

“Materials companies will explore new molecular structures. Transportation companies will optimize logistics. Financial institutions may need faster and precise software applications. the discovery of the new drug by the pharmaceutical companies.”

Read more

In order to achieve Quantum supremacy (first claimed by Google), the machine should able to perform calculations that would be troubling for classical computers. 

While Honeywell’s machine has only six qubits so far, the one that Google used to achieve quantum supremacy had 53 qubits.

The feat that was achieved by Honeywell’s quantum computer can even be achieved by a laptop in order to achieve quantum supremacy it should have at least 50 to 60 qubits.

Ciarán Gilligan-Lee of University College London says that having the highest quantum volume could mean that Honeywell’s qubits are remarkably accurate and can be computed over a long period of time, but it is not the most powerful quantum computers available.

Although Honeywell’s machine cannot yet outperform classical computers Uttley says it is a step in the right direction to make quantum computers practically useful.

Categories
Future Technology Science Trending News

China launches last BDS satellite to compete with GPS

China on 23rd this month, launched its 30th and final BDS satellite to complete its own ‘GPS’ like global navigation system BeiDou. The country started the program in the 1990s to begin the first phase. This satellite launch is part of the third phase of the program that began in 2015.

It was initially scheduled for 16 June, although it was postponed for a week after technical difficulties. The Long March-3B rocket successfully lifted off with the latest navigation satellite.

With the US’s GPS, Russia’s GLONASS, and the EU’s Galileo navigation services that provide global services, china now joins them.

This third phase in China’s navigation system plan was designed to provide global services. In 2018, it began to offer Beidou’s services to other countries and regions along Belt Road.

“The BeiDou Navigation Satellite System (BDS) provides a time-and-space location benchmark, which will have a great impact on the social and economic development of the country as well as people’s lives. It will also lay the foundation for building new infrastructure, an important direction for China’s development in the next phase”

stated Chen Zhonggui, chief designer of BDS-3 satellites at the China Academy of Space Technology (CAST).

The latest 55th satellite joins the Beidou’s family to provide navigation services on a global scale.

The BDS-3 also facilitates short message communication service with 1,200 Chinese characters messages.

China is now working on getting Beidou’s approval from international bodies. According to Chinese media, the ICAO will approve the use of the navigation system by the end of the year.

 The report also noted that the proposal for mobile communication supporting BDS-3 has also passed a review.

Categories
Enterprise Secrets Future Technology Science

Is 5G Technology, A gimmick to hike smartphone price!

5G Technology is being slowly rolled out in several parts of the world. Mobile companies are pushing it forward as the technology of the future promising higher bandwidth and lower latency while several groups raise flags against it. So what is 5G and why is it important to know?

Evolution of wireless cellular communication:

The “G” represents the GENERATION of mobile technology. A generation is a set of network standards used to implement a particular mobile system. Each successive generation offered an increase in speed and a reduction in latency.

First generation:

1G or first-generation was first introduced in the 1970s and fully implemented by the 80’s. It was an analog system that was only sufficient for voice calling but with poor quality and no security.

Anybody with a radio scanner can eavesdrop a call. In 1G, the data speed was 2.4Kbps 

Second generation:

2G was launched in Finland by Radiolinja (now part of Elisa Oyj) in 1991. It used a digital system that promised greater security and quality over 1G. It also introduced data services like SMS and MMS. 

At first, the data speed was only 9.6Kbps but further improvements like GPRS, EDGE, and EDGE+ improved the speeds by 171Kbps, 384Kbps, and 1.3Mbps respectively.

Third generation:

After the 2000’s internet boom, the need for faster data speeds paved the way for 3G (UMTS). Individual organizations from Nations like America(ATIS), Europe(ETSI), Japan(ARIB TTC), China(CCSA), and Korea(TTA) came together to form 3GPP.

Theoretical Speed of 21.6Mbps with implementation of HSPA+.

Fourth generation:

4G technology was marked by the introduction of MIMO(Multiple Input Multiple Output) and OFDM (Orthogonal Frequency Division Multiplexing).

LTE (Long Term Evolution) was a series of upgrades to existing 3G (UMTS) to provide high quality, high speed, and security while reducing the cost of data services, Internet over IP, and latency to an average 50ms.

The average speed in 4G is 15-50 Mbps and Max speed is 300 Mbps – 1Gbps

The Need for 5G?

advantages of 5G technology

4G may offer significant speeds over previous generations but it is not enough to usher in the fourth industrial revolution.

The latency and bandwidth cap is simply not enough for usage in real-time systems like autonomous vehicles, augmented reality, etc.

Coverage area

Implementing 5G requires additional cellular towers which increases the number of connections per unit area up to 100x. Hence it can handle the boom in the number of IoT devices expected to join the internet in the coming years.

Reduced power usage

5G implements massive MIMO and Beamforming techniques. This reduces the strain on device battery usage.

Reduced latency

Latency is how long a data packet takes to travel from one point to another. For gamers, Increased latency will result in lag which looks like a delay between the action of users and the response of the game.

5G promises latency up to 10ms which is 40 ms lesser than 4G.

5G Technology

All the above-mentioned generation of wireless communication works on the radio portion of the electromagnetic spectrum. 

For example, 1G used 850MHz to 1900MHz, 2G and 3G used 850MHz to 2100MHz, and 4G operated in the 600MHz to 2100MHz range.

increase in bandwidth increases network speed

In a digital communication system, binary data is embedded onto an analog radio wave called Channel. When the frequency of the channel increases the data rate also increases.

Hence by opening up the never before used millimeter waves (i.e 6GHz to 52.6GHZ) the bandwidth and data speeds increases tremendously.

5G has two frequency sets. Frequency range 1 (FR1) ranges from 450MHz to 6GHz and Frequency range 2 (FR2) ranges from 24.25GHz to 52.6GHz. 

FR2 also called millimeter wave (mmWave) supports the peak data speeds promised by the 5G network. In theory, the peak data rates are 20Gbps downlink and 10Gbps uplink with latency less than 10ms.

Conclusion:

By tapping into a previously unused area of the radio spectrum, 5G has managed to way devices communicate with each other. This has also caused hysteria among people who were unable to understand the technology. 

Myths about 5G being the reason for coronavirus, interfering migration patterns of birds are starting to surface on the internet.

Unless steps are taken to raise awareness these myths will lead to further damage to property and lives.

Categories
AI Future Technology Science

The Future of artificial eyesight is here: EC-I

You know what is the most complex part of the human body, yes it’s the human eye. Researchers have been working on reproducing the same. Now, they have made artificial eyesight possible called EC-I, which has the ability to see better than the real thing.

Bionic eyes has the potential to restore eyesight to people who have lost it and even to those who never had it.

Currently, the most advanced versions are from companies such as Bionic Vision Australia and Second Sight, which have already been implanted into patients.

These devices are made of a pair of glasses with a camera in the center. That data is processed by a small unit worn out of the body, then sent to the user’s retina for implantation.

From there, signals are transmitted to the visual centers of the brain.

And they work. Users have reported being able to see the world for the first time in years. Unfortunately, this artificial eyesight is not enough for them to rely on to navigate the world.

Some studies have shown that this type of bionic eye can produce strange images and are too slow to capture sharp movements. 

But this new device can be improved. A team led by scientists from the Hong Kong University of Science and Technology (HKUST) has developed what they call Electrochemical Eye (EC-Eye).

artificial eyesight
A cross-section of the make-up of Electrochemical Eye (EC-Eye)

Instead of using a camera-like two-dimensional image sensor, the EC-I is designed with a concave curve following an actual retina.

This surface is studded with an array of small light sensors designed to mimic photoreceptors on the human retina.

These sensors are connected by a wire made of liquid metal, which then acts like an optic nerve.

The team tested the EC-I and showed that it could capture images much earlier than expected.

It was set up to display large individual letters in front of a computer screen, and it was able to display them clearly enough to be read.

Although this is a huge improvement over existing bionic eye designs, EC-I vision has a long way ahead to achieve the natural human eyesight. But, the team says, this may not be the case forever. 

The technique has the ability to outshine the real thing by using a dense array of sensors and attaching each sensor to a separate nanowire.

The team even goes so far as to say that using other materials in different parts of the EC-I can provide users with a higher sensitivity to infrared – essentially, night vision.

Of course, a lot of work remains to be done in the future, but the EC-I is promising.

The research was published in the journal Nature. The device can be seen testing its eyes in the video below.

Electrochemical eye (EC-eye) -Eye images sensory images

Categories
Enterprise Secrets Science

A SpaceX competitor launches NASA and spy satellites

With Elon Musk and SpaceX setting their sights on large spacecraft and distant destinations such as the Moon and Mars, other commercial space companies including Rocket Lab are following the path paved by Musk and offering orbits of smaller satellites.

Rocket Lab is headquartered in California, like SpaceX. The aim is also to retrieve and reuse their rockets, but instead to land them like Musk’s Falcon 9, hoping to get their electron rockets out of the air using a chopper immediately after launch. 

The company has performed the recovery process but has yet to recover a rocket during one of its commercial launches.

The launch window for Rocket Lab’s next mission, dubbed “Not Stop Me Now”, opens Thursday (local time) from the launch pad in New Zealand. Blast-off can happen as soon as 9:43 am. At 6.55 PM, PT Wednesday evening, with the electron vertical on the launchpad, things looked promising for the scheduled launch.

The mission is rideshare that will distribute NASA-sponsored CubeSat by students and staff at Boston University to study the Earth’s magnetic field. The Cubesat later release small picosatellites for track space weather. Another payload, an Australian M2 Pathfinder satellite to test space communications architecture will also join them.

Three payloads for an American spy shop, national reconnaissance office, or NRO will also share the lift.

As a musical name for the mission, it has nothing to do with NASA or NRO.

“The mission has been named ‘Don’t Stop Me Now’ in recognition of a Rocket Lab board member and wrote in a release from the company,” recently linked to Queen Fan Scott Smith, who has passed away. “

Rocket Lab will not attempt to recover the electron on this mission, but it will still be live streaming in its entirety so you can fix your launch. The broadcast will begin about 20 minutes before its launch on the company’s website and YouTube.

Categories
AI Future Technology How to Science

Using your Voice as Passwords: May become reality

How efficient is it to use voice recognition as a password? Let’s find out. Smartphones are getting smarter and faster with each passing day and so is their safety.

People love it when they include new features to unlock their brand. Apple shook the world with its FaceID when it debuted.

The USA and China are so advanced in technology that they can recognize your face even when you are wearing a mask.

It seems that Face ID will maintain its awe for at least the next few years. But using voice recognition as a password is also able to achieve the same importance.

A new feature of Google Assistant

Google Assistant

Google is slowly sliding a new feature in its AI assistant. Before we proceed to this discussion, you should know that it is not yet universally available.

But there is a chance that all your payments and purchases may soon be certified with a voice match. You can find this feature on both Android and iOS in a very short time.

Right now Google plans to limit this feature to only one function. It may be able to make Google Play purchases and also take restaurant orders.

Is it a new thing?

No matter what feature it is, it has been among us for a few years now. Google tried to implement a voice match in Google Pixel 2 and its home speakers.

It was back in 2017. But this was not so accurate so Google did not yet want to use voice recognition as a password since it can only match your voice with personal content and nothing more.

Each time it recognizes your voice it can boot up your personal calendar, email, and other similar things. Google is working really hard to achieve its voice recognition accuracy.

The future

Futurists predict that future payments may be fully automated. If you want to certify a payment, all you have to do is say “pay $10”.

You do not need to manually type in card numbers and struggle to get a one-time password. Voice authentication does not require any new hardware, it reduces cost which makes it scalable.

Thumbprint or facial recognition requires hardware improvements. While with your voice, you can achieve this with some software updates as well.

This not only reduces the cost but also reduces the time required for its implementation.

So what’s holding it back?

Any technology that makes its way into our lives has a downside. Using voice recognition as a password is hard to achieve.

The user can set up the feature in a quiet environment that may not work when he tried to access it in noise. Some users try to sound correct when installing.

But recording in a natural voice and place is the only way for you to get the best possible result. The system might detect your voice when you are sick or when you are old and your voice becomes deeper.

The conclusion

We are still a long way from using voice recognition as a password. But this is something that we can actually accomplish. As impossible as it sounds, we are really close to making it a reality.

No technology is perfect when in debuts. But with time and user feedback, voice authentication can completely change our perception of security.