In something that feels like it's right out of HBO's 'True Blood,' we're looking at a future of artificial blood, mass manufactured on an industrial scale - in the near future.
Wellcome Trust is behind the research, with scientists working on getting to the point of reaching a trial stage of using artificial blood made from human stem cells. Principal researcher, Marc Turner, has said that his team has made red blood cells that are capable of being used in a clinical transfusion. Professor Turner has talked of a technique to culture red blood cells from induced pluripotent stem (iPS) cells - cells that have been taken from humans, and 'rewound' into stem cells.
From there, biochemical conditions that are similar to what happens inside of the human body are recreated to induce the iPS cells to mature into red blood cells - best of all, in the universal blood type O. Prof Turner explains: "Although similar research has been conducted elsewhere, this is the first time anybody has manufactured blood to the appropriate quality and safety standards for transfusion into a human being".
To celebrate this week's release of American Hustle on home video formats, our friends at Roadshow Home Entertainment have supplied us with copies of the film on Blu-ray to give away to five lucky readers. The 2013 motion picture was released to great critical acclaim, especially of its ensemble cast starring Jennifer Lawrence and Christian Bale, and scored ten Oscar nominations.
To go into the running to take one copy home, simply answer the following question in 35 words or less:
How would you invest $2 million of embezzled money?
To enter, simply 'like' this post and share via Facebook or Twitter and send your answers, along with your postal address to ben at TweakTown.com before the competition closes on April 18th. The total prize pool is approximately $119.85.
American Hustle is available on Blu-ray + UltraViolet, as well as DVD + UltraViolet combo pack from Australian retailers on April 16th.
Google is pushing out an update to Glass, which will see some improvements, and the removal of the function to video call people. Google removed the video call function from Glass as the feature didn't meet Google's "high standards".
The search giant says that around 10% of Glass users were using the video call function, so in light of this, the Glass team made "the hard decision to remove video calls from Glass until the experience is better". Onto the updates, where Glass will not bundle photos together - this is really important, as your timeline can be completely cluttered with photos.
The latest update to Glass will bundle all of your photos, videos and vignettes into a single bundle for each day. For someone like me who takes lots of photos and videos per day, my timeline is constantly cluttered - news to my wearable ears!
During the National Association of Broadcasters (NAB) Show in Las Vegas just recently, Japan's public broadcasting organization, NHK, showed off an 8K test. This test, according to Mashable, was "so dense with detail that the human eye will not detect additional resolution".
NHK was showing off some footage that included a Japanese fireworks display, a short film by a performing arts troupe, a fashion show, and footage from a soccer game between Brazil and Spain. Mashable editor Josh Dickey said that this footage looked "real" and that it was "spectacular". Dickey talked more about the 8K footage: "The clarity and depth of field truly is uncanny, yet the picture had none of the harsh edges, strange light and "video" vibe of other super-HD displays and high frame-rate demos I've seen. It's somehow cinematic; yet you can focus in on any face in a large crowd and make out every feature at varying distances. It really is like being there".
He continued: "3D is already wobbling off to international markets, and if something like 8K ever catches on here, it won't help it. During the fireworks display footage, birds that fly into the shot had me thinking some sparrows had gotten into the place. Stereovision would be overkill". When will 8K penetrate more into the market? Well, the displays and TVs have no current ETA as we need broadcasts and movies to catch up.
ASRock is already teasing the next generation of Intel CPUs and motherboards, inviting press to its 9 Series Motherboard launch during Computex 2014. ASRock is holding the session on June 4, just as the event kicks off.
The company will be launching its new 9-series of motherboards, as well as its "latest product features" and exclusive product information to ASRock's closest friends in the media. You can be sure we'll be covering the event itself, and all of the new 9-series products that will be launched at Computex 2014.
For weeks now it has appeared that Facebook would be swooping in and buying up drone manufacturer, Titan Aerospace, but today Google has apparently beaten Facebook to the punch and picked up the company itself. While no price has been mentioned on how much the deal cost Google, it does mark the third company of this type that the Mountain View-based company has added to its stables.
"Titan Aerospace and Google share a profound optimism about the potential for technology to improve the world. It's still early days, but atmospheric satellites could help bring internet access to millions of people, and help solve other problems, including disaster relief and environmental damage like deforestation," said a Google spokesperson.
Today Microsoft released the developer preview version of Windows 8.1 to the world and any user who is part of the Windows Phone developer program can download the update now. The developer preview version of Windows Phone 8.1 allows developers to get their first taste of Microsoft's Siri-like virtual assistant, Cortana.
Users who register as a developer under the App Studio and create a new project will have access to the update, as well as those who registered under the Windows Phone Developer program and paid the $19 fee. Finally, any Windows Phone that is "developer unlocked," will be able to download Windows Phone 8.1. While Windows Phone 8.1 will bring a lot of new features to Windows Phone, Cortana is most certainly, the most anticipated.
Cortana is a virtual assistant that functions via voice commands just like Siri and Google Now, and is said to provide a more detailed and contextually relevant result based on a special "notebook" file Cortana keeps on your past queries. Microsoft hopes to draw in additional customers from its Halo fanbase as well thanks to the Cortana name given to the assistant.
T-Mobile confirmed today it will no longer charge subscribers a penalty if they go over their data plan limits, and anyone that goes over their data plan will just have speeds throttled.
"Overage fees are flat out wrong," said John Legere, T-Mobile president and CEO in a press statement. "Charging overage fees is a greedy, predatory practice that needs to go. Starting in May for bills arriving in June- regardless of whether you're on Simple Choice, Simple Starter or an older plan, we're abolishing overages for good. Period."
T-Mobile also urges phone owners to sign a Change.org petition to pressure AT&T, Verizon Wireless and Sprint into dropping overage charges. Sprint welcomes customers to join its "Framily" plan, while AT&T and Verizon still hit customers with overage charges - which can easily rack up the phone bill even higher - and should be curious to see if they publicly respond.
Around 145 million Americans currently own smartphones, according to comScore, though there is a lucrative black market for stolen phones.
A recent survey found 83 percent of consumers believe a kill switch would help reduce theft, while 93 percent of those surveyed don't want an added charge for a kill switch feature.
"My research suggests that at least half of smartphone owners would in fact reduce their insurance coverage if the Kill Switch reduced the prevalence of cell phone theft," said Dr. William Duckworth, Creighton University Heider College of Business, in a report. "Overall, it seems clear that Americans want the Kill Switch and that an industry-wide implementation of the technology could significantly improve public safety and save consumers billions of dollars a year."
Some new stats have been publishes by a third party company called Twopcharts looking at Twitter. At last count, Twitter has about 974 million users, but it's less clear how many of those accounts are still in use. Twopcharts has offered up some numbers that claim twitter is much less active than the 974 million user number might suggest.
The stats that Twopcharts had gathered claim that 44% of those Twitter accounts have never made a single tweet. That means that 44% of Twitter's accounts have never been used. The company goes on to claim that only 126 million of Twitter accounts have sent a tweet in the past 30 days.
Twitter is tight lipped about its stats for the most part and doesn't like to talk about user retention. What Twitter has said in the past is that it has 241 million average monthly users as of December 31 2013. Twopcharts also claims that 391 million Twitter accounts have 0 followers and about 232 million haven't followed a single Twitter user themselves.