A vexing question for Watson: Why is IBM surging?

Here’s a vexing question for artificial mega-brain Watson: Why is IBM stock surging? Big Blue’s market value rose about $6 billion after the computer giant agreed on Thursday to buy Truven Health Analytics for $2.6 billion. Giving IBM’s artificial-intelligence platform more data to chew on is useful, but investors’ glee over an opaque addition to … Read more

Pluck hair in a specific pattern to grow new hair: Hair six times thicker in mice

Quorum sensing in hair population regeneration is shown. Credit: Courtesy of Cheng-Ming Chuong If there’s a cure for male pattern baldness, it might hurt a little. A team led by USC Stem Cell Principal Investigator Cheng-Ming Chuong has demonstrated that by plucking 200 hairs in a specific pattern and density, they can induce up to … Read more

A new algorithm from MIT could protect ships from ‘rogue waves’ at sea

Predictive analytics can already help prevent churn and anticipate equipment failures, but MIT has applied it to a new realm altogether: protecting ships at sea from so-called “rogue waves.” Also known as killer waves, rogue waves swell up seemingly out of nowhere and can be eight times higher than the surrounding sea. They can strike … Read more

Mortgage rates could cross a record low

Who knew? The Federal Reserve raised its funds rate barely two months ago, and all that worry about higher interest rates for mortgage borrowers ended up being positively unwarranted. The average rate on the popular 30-year fixed mortgage began a free fall, reacting to financial markets overseas rather than monetary policy here at home. “Mortgage … Read more

Steam debuts a VR performance-check utility for PCs ahead of HTC Vive rollout

The SteamVR-powered HTC Vive virtual reality headset is officially up for preorder on February 29 , and Valve wants to help make sure your PC is ready for it. Valve recently published a free program on Steam called the SteamVR Performance Test that will automatically check your system specs to see if they make the … Read more