Black Mirror Is Almost as Smart as a Good Sci-Fi Book

Wired News - Sat, 06/06/2015 - 11:00am

In the latest episode of the Geek's Guide to the Galaxy podcast the panel discusses why Black Mirror is better than most other sci-fi TV.

The post Black Mirror Is Almost as Smart as a Good Sci-Fi Book appeared first on WIRED.









Categories: Science

While You Were Offline: I Can’t Believe It’s Not Blatter!

Wired News - Sat, 06/06/2015 - 11:00am

This week on the Internet it's Caitlyn Jenner's world—we just live in it.

The post While You Were Offline: I Can’t Believe It’s Not Blatter! appeared first on WIRED.









Categories: Science

A New Theory to Explain the Higgs Mass

Wired News - Sat, 06/06/2015 - 11:00am

One of the greatest mysteries in physics could be solved by a mattress-like axion field that permeates space and time.

The post A New Theory to Explain the Higgs Mass appeared first on WIRED.









Categories: Science

Action Movies, Stop Taking Away Our Everyday Heroes

Wired News - Sat, 06/06/2015 - 11:00am

When none of our heroes look like us, we don’t have any heroes to relate to.

The post Action Movies, Stop Taking Away Our Everyday Heroes appeared first on WIRED.









Categories: Science

F1 Street Racing Is Risky as Hell. That’s Why It’s So Great

Wired News - Sat, 06/06/2015 - 11:00am

Street circuits are the greatest place to race, both for the drivers and the fans.

The post F1 Street Racing Is Risky as Hell. That’s Why It’s So Great appeared first on WIRED.









Categories: Science

Duct Tape: Saving Soldiers and Astronauts for 70 Years

Wired News - Sat, 06/06/2015 - 9:29am

The universal repair solution owes its existence to a Navy mom from Illinois.

The post Duct Tape: Saving Soldiers and Astronauts for 70 Years appeared first on WIRED.









Categories: Science

How Instagram Is Transforming Professional Cooking

Wired News - Sat, 06/06/2015 - 9:05am

Your followers aren't the only ones checking out your perfectly composed food porn.

The post How Instagram Is Transforming Professional Cooking appeared first on WIRED.









Categories: Science

Quantum Gravity Will Be Just Fine Without String Theory

Slashdot - Sat, 06/06/2015 - 8:40am
StartsWithABang writes: It's a difficult fact to accept: our two most fundamental theories that describe reality, General Relativity for gravitation and the Standard Model / Quantum Field Theory for the other three forces, are fundamentally incompatible with one another. When an electron moves through a double slit, for example, its gravitational field can't move through both slits, at least not without a quantum theory of gravity. String Theory is often touted as the only game in town as far as formulating a quantum theory of gravity is concerned, but in fact there are five viable options, each with different pros, cons, and approaches to the problem. Many of them, in fact, have undergone significant developments in the past 5-10 years, something String Theory cannot claim.

Read more of this story at Slashdot.

Categories: Science

Placenta Eating Offers No Benefit To Mom

Slashdot - Sat, 06/06/2015 - 6:17am
Dave Knott writes: While some celebrity moms swear by it and have made it trendy, a new study says that consuming the placenta after birth offers women and their babies no benefit. In fact, the practice — known as placentophagy — may even pose unknown risks to mothers and infants, according to a team from Northwestern University in Chicago, who pored over the accumulated research on the issue. They found no data to support that eating the placenta — either raw, cooked or in pill form — protects against postpartum depression, reduces pain after childbirth, increases a woman's energy, helps with lactation, improves mother-child bonding, replenishes iron in the body, or improves skin elasticity. The researchers also said that there are no studies examining the risks associated with eating the placenta, which acts as a filter to absorb and protect fetuses from toxins and pollutants.

Read more of this story at Slashdot.

Categories: Science

Supreme Court May Decide the Fate of APIs (But Also Klingonese and Dothraki)

Slashdot - Sat, 06/06/2015 - 5:48am
New submitter nerdpocalypse writes: In a larger battle than even Godzilla v. Mothra, Google v. Oracle threatens not only Japan but the entire nerd world. What is at stake is how a language can be [copyrighted]. This affects not just programming languages, APIs, and everything that runs ... well ... everything, but also the copyright status of new languages such as Klingon and Dothraki.

Read more of this story at Slashdot.

Categories: Science

Super-resolution electron microscopy of soft materials like biomaterials

Kurzweil AI - Sat, 06/06/2015 - 3:40am

CLAIRE image of Al nanostructures with an inset that shows a cluster of six Al nanostructures (credit: Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory)

Soft matter encompasses a broad swath of materials, including liquids, polymers, gels, foam and — most importantly — biomolecules. At the heart of soft materials, governing their overall properties and capabilities, are the interactions of nano-sized components.

Observing the dynamics behind these interactions is critical to understanding key biological processes, such as protein crystallization and metabolism, and could help accelerate the development of important new technologies, such as artificial photosynthesis or high-efficiency photovoltaic cells.

Observing these dynamics at sufficient resolution has been a major challenge, but this challenge is now being met with a new non-invasive nanoscale imaging technique that goes by the acronym of CLAIRE.

CLAIRE stands for “cathodoluminescence activated imaging by resonant energy transfer.” Invented by researchers with the U.S. Department of Energy (DOE)’s Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory (Berkeley Lab) and the University of California (UC) Berkeley, CLAIRE extends the extremely high resolution of electron microscopy to the dynamic imaging of soft matter.

“Traditional electron microscopy damages soft materials and has therefore mainly been used to provide topographical or compositional information about robust inorganic solids or fixed sections of biological specimens,” says chemist Naomi Ginsberg, who leads CLAIRE’s development and holds appointments with Berkeley Lab’s Physical Biosciences Division and its Materials Sciences Division, as well as UC Berkeley’s departments of chemistry and physics.

“CLAIRE allows us to convert electron microscopy into a new non-invasive imaging modality for studying soft materials and providing spectrally specific information about them on the nanoscale.”

Ginsberg is also a member of the Kavli Energy NanoScience Institute (Kavli-ENSI) at Berkeley. She and her research group recently demonstrated CLAIRE’s imaging capabilities by applying the technique to aluminum nanostructures and polymer films that could not have been directly imaged with electron microscopy.

“What microscopic defects in molecular solids give rise to their functional optical and electronic properties? By what potentially controllable process do such solids form from their individual microscopic components, initially in the solution phase? The answers require observing the dynamics of electronic excitations or of molecules themselves as they explore spatially heterogeneous landscapes in condensed phase systems,” Ginsberg says.

“In our demonstration, we obtained optical images of aluminum nanostructures with 46 nanometer resolution, then validated the non-invasiveness of CLAIRE by imaging a conjugated polymer film. The high resolution, speed and non-invasiveness we demonstrated with CLAIRE positions us to transform our current understanding of key biomolecular interactions.”

How to avoid destroying soft matter with electron beams

CLAIRE works by essentially combining the best attributes of optical and scanning electron microscopy into a single imaging platform.

Scanning electron microscopes use beams of electrons rather than light for illumination and magnification. With much shorter wavelengths than photons of visible light, electron beams can be used to observe objects hundreds of times smaller than those that can be resolved with an optical microscope. However, these electron beams destroy most forms of soft matter and are incapable of spectrally specific molecular excitation.

Ginsberg and her colleagues get around these problems by employing a process called “cathodoluminescence,” in which an ultrathin scintillating film, about 20 nanometers thick, composed of cerium-doped yttrium aluminum perovskite, is inserted between the electron beam and the sample.

When the scintillating film is excited by a low-energy electron beam (about 1 KeV), it emits energy that is transferred to the sample, causing the sample to radiate. This luminescence is recorded and correlated to the electron beam position to form an image that is not restricted by the optical diffraction limit (which limits optical microscopy).

The CLAIRE imaging demonstration was carried out at the Molecular Foundry, a DOE Office of Science User Facility.

Observing biomolecular interactions, solar cells, and LEDs

While there is still more work to do to make CLAIRE widely accessible, Ginsberg and her group are moving forward with further refinements for several specific applications.

“We’re interested in non-invasively imaging soft functional materials like the active layers in solar cells and light-emitting devices,” she says. “It is especially true in organics and organic/inorganic hybrids that the morphology of these materials is complex and requires nanoscale resolution to correlate morphological features to functions.”

Ginsberg and her group are also working on the creation of liquid cells for observing biomolecular interactions under physiological conditions. Since electron microscopes can only operate in a high vacuum, as molecules in the air disrupt the electron beam, and since liquids evaporate in high vacuum, aqueous samples must either be freeze-dried or hermetically sealed in special cells.

“We need liquid cells for CLAIRE to study the dynamic organization of light-harvesting proteins in photosynthetic membranes,” Ginsberg says. “We should also be able to perform other studies in membrane biophysics to see how molecules diffuse in complex environments, and we’d like to be able to study molecular recognition at the single molecule level.”

In addition, Ginsberg and her group will be using CLAIRE to study the dynamics of nanoscale systems for soft materials in general. “We would love to be able to observe crystallization processes or to watch a material made of nanoscale components anneal or undergo a phase transition,” she says. “We would also love to be able to watch the electric double layer at a charged surface as it evolves, as this phenomenon is crucial to battery science.”

A paper describing the most recent work on CLAIRE has been published in the journal Nano Letters. This research was primarily supported by the DOE Office of Science and by the National Science Foundation.

Abstract of Cathodoluminescence-Activated Nanoimaging: Noninvasive Near-Field Optical Microscopy in an Electron Microscope

We demonstrate a new nanoimaging platform in which optical excitations generated by a low-energy electron beam in an ultrathin scintillator are used as a noninvasive, near-field optical scanning probe of an underlying sample. We obtain optical images of Al nanostructures with 46 nm resolution and validate the noninvasiveness of this approach by imaging a conjugated polymer film otherwise incompatible with electron microscopy due to electron-induced damage. The high resolution, speed, and noninvasiveness of this “cathodoluminescence-activated” platform also show promise for super-resolution bioimaging.

Categories: Science

3-D printing tough biogel structures for tissue engineering or soft robots

Kurzweil AI - Sat, 06/06/2015 - 3:16am

Lasagna? No, an open lattice of 3-D printed material, with materials having different characteristics of strength and flexibility indicated by different colors (credit: the researchers)

Researchers at three universities have developed a new way of making tough — but soft and wet — biocompatible hydrogel materials into complex and intricately patterned shapes. The process might lead to scaffolds for repair or replacement of load-bearing tissues, such as cartilage. It could also allow for tough but flexible actuators for future robots, the researchers say.

The new process is described in a paper in the journal Advanced Materials, co-authored by MIT associate professor of mechanical engineering Xuanhe Zhao and colleagues at MIT, Duke University, and Columbia University.

Zhao says the process can produce complex hydrogel structures that are “extremely tough and robust,” but still allow for encapsulating cells in the structures. That could make it possible to 3D-print complex biostructures.

Biocompatible structures

Hydrogels are defined by water molecules encased in rubbery polymer networks that provide shape and structure. They are similar to natural tissues such as cartilage, which is used by the body as a natural shock absorber.

While synthetic hydrogels are commonly weak or brittle, a number of them that are tough and stretchable have been developed over the last decade. However, making tough hydrogels has usually involved “harsh chemical environments” that would kill living cells encapsulated in them, Zhao says.

The new hydrogel materials are generated by combining polyethylene glycol (PEG) and sodium alginate, which synergize to form a hydrogel tougher than natural cartilage. The materials are benign enough to synthesize together with living cells — such as stem cells — which could then allow high viability of the cells, says Zhao, who holds a joint appointment in MIT’s Department of Civil and Environmental Engineering.

3-D printing strong, flexible biomaterials

3-D printed tough, biocompatible PEG–alginate–nanoclay hydrogels in ear and nose shapes (credit: Sungmin Hong et al./ Advanced Materials)

Previous work was not able to produce complex 3-D structures with tough hydrogels, Zhao says. The new biocompatible tough hydrogel can be printed into diverse 3-D structures such as a hollow cube, hemisphere, pyramid, twisted bundle, multilayer mesh, or physiologically relevant shapes, such as a human nose or ear.

The new method uses a commercially available 3D-printing mechanism, Zhao explains. “The innovation is really about the material — a new ink for 3-D printing of biocompatible tough hydrogel,” he says, specifically, a composite of two different biopolymers.

“Each [material] individually is very weak and brittle, but once you put them together, it becomes very tough and strong. It’s like steel-reinforced concrete.”

The PEG material provides elasticity to the printed material, while sodium alginate allows it to dissipate energy under deformation without breaking. A third ingredient, a biocompatible “nanoclay,” makes it possible to fine-tune the viscosity (how easily it flows) of the material, improving the ability to control its flow through the 3D-printing nozzle.

The material can be made so flexible that a printed shape, such as a pyramid, can be compressed by 99 percent, and then spring back to its original shape, Sungmin Hong, a lead author of the paper and a former postdoc in Zhao’s group, says; it can also be stretched to five times its original size. Such resilience is a key feature of natural bodily tissues that need to withstand a variety of forces and impacts.

Such materials might eventually be used to custom-print shapes for the replacement of cartilaginous tissues in ears, noses, or load-bearing body joints, Zhao says. Lab tests have already shown that the material is even tougher than natural cartilage.

Enhancing resolution

The next step in the research will be to improve the resolution of the printer, which is currently limited to details about 500 micrometers (0.5 millimeters) in size, and to test the printed hydrogel structures in animal models. “We are enhancing the resolution,” Zhao says, “to be able to print more accurate structures for applications.”

The technique could also be applied to printing a variety of soft but tough structural materials, he says, such as actuators for soft robotic systems.

“This is really beautiful work that demonstrates major advances in the utilization of tough hydrogels,” says David Mooney, a professor of bioengineering at Harvard University who was not involved in this work. “This builds off earlier work using other polymer systems, with some of this earlier work done by Dr. Zhao, but the demonstration that one can achieve similar mechanical performance with a common biomedical polymer is a substantial advance.

“It is also quite exciting that these new tough gels can be used for 3-D printing, as this is new for these gels, to my knowledge.”

The work was supported by the National Institutes of Health, the Office of Naval Research, AOSpine Foundation, and the National Science Foundation.

Abstract of 3D Printing of Highly Stretchable and Tough Hydrogels into Complex, Cellularized Structures

A 3D printable and highly stretchable tough hydrogel is developed by combining poly(ethylene glycol) and sodium alginate, which synergize to form a hydrogel tougher than natural cartilage. Encapsulated cells maintain high viability over a 7 d culture period and are highly deformed together with the hydrogel. By adding biocompatible nanoclay, the tough hydrogel is 3D printed in various shapes without requiring support material.

Categories: Science

2014 Underhanded C Contest Winners Announced

Slashdot - Sat, 06/06/2015 - 2:56am
Rei writes with a bit of news from earlier this week: It's that time of year again — the results of the 2014 Underhanded C Contest have been announced. Techniques used for secretly alerting a user to a NSA request include (among others) misleadingly long loop execution, replacing user #defines with system ones, K&R style function declarations to avoid type checking, and using system #includes to covertly change structure packing. The winning entry exploits a system-provided function that is implemented as a poorly protected macro, tricking it into executing a piece of code given as an argument multiple times.

Read more of this story at Slashdot.

Categories: Science

Building and transplanting a bioengineered forelimb

Kurzweil AI - Sat, 06/06/2015 - 2:05am

A suspension of muscle progenitor cells is injected into the cell-free matrix of a decellularized rat limb, which provides shape and structure onto which regenerated tissue can grow (credit: Bernhard Jank, MD, Ott Laboratory, Massachusetts General Hospital Center for Regenerative Medicine)

A team of Massachusetts General Hospital (MGH) investigators has made the first steps towards developing bioartificial replacement limbs suitable for transplantation.

In a Biomaterials journal report, the researchers describe using an experimental approach previously used to build bioartificial organs to engineer rat forelimbs with functioning vascular and muscle tissue. They also provided evidence that the same approach could be applied to the limbs of primates.

“The composite nature of our limbs makes building a functional biological replacement particularly challenging,” explains Harald Ott, MD, of the MGH Department of Surgery and the Center for Regenerative Medicine and assistant professor of Surgery at Harvard Medical School, senior author of the paper.

The progenitor cells needed to regenerate all of the tissues that make up a limb could be provided by the potential recipient. The problem is that limbs contain muscles, bone, cartilage, blood vessels, tendons, ligaments and nerves — each of which has to be rebuilt and requires a specific supporting structure (“matrix”), a step that has been a missing, he explained.

“We have shown that we can maintain the matrix of all of these tissues in their natural relationships to each other, that we can culture the entire construct over prolonged periods of time, and that we can repopulate the vascular system and musculature.”

Engineering a bioartificial limb

Procedure for composite tissue engineering. (1) Vascular endothelial cells are instilled into the vascular system of acellular composite tissue grafts. (2) Myoblasts, fibroblasts and endothelial cells are injected into the muscle compartment on day 2 of whole organ culture. (3) Full-thickness skin grafts are transplanted onto engineered constructs on day 10 of in vitro culture. (credit: B.J. Jank et al. / Biomaterials)

The current study uses technology Ott discovered as a research fellow at the University of Minnesota, in which living cells are stripped from a donor organ with a detergent solution and the remaining matrix is then repopulated with progenitor cells appropriate to the specific organ.

His team and others at MGH and elsewhere have used this decellularization technique to regenerate kidneyslivershearts, and lungs from animal models, but this is the first reported use to engineer the more complex tissues of a bioartificial limb.

The same decellularization process used in the whole-organ studies — perfusing a detergent solution through the vascular system — was used to strip all cellular materials from forelimbs removed from deceased rats in a way that preserved the primary vasculature and nerve matrix.

After thorough removal of cellular debris — a process that took a week — what remained was the cell-free matrix that provides structure to all of a limb’s composite tissues.  At the same time, populations of muscle and vascular cells were being grown in culture.

Bioreactor for growing a forelimb

After vascular and muscle progenitors have been introduced into a decellularized rat limb, it is suspended in a bioreactor, which provides a nutrient solution and electrical stimulation to support and promote the growth of new tissues. (Bernhard Jank, MD, Ott Laboratory, Massachusetts General Hospital Center for Regenerative Medicine)

The research team then cultured the forelimb matrix in a bioreactor, within which vascular cells were injected into the limb’s main artery to regenerate veins and arteries.  Muscle progenitors were injected directly into the matrix sheaths that define the position of each muscle.

After five days in culture, electrical stimulation was applied to the potential limb graft to further promote muscle formation, and after two weeks, the grafts were removed from the bioreactor.

Analysis of the bioartificial limbs confirmed the presence of vascular cells along blood vessel walls and muscle cells aligned into appropriate fibers throughout the muscle matrix.

Functional testing of the isolated limbs showed that electrical stimulation of muscle fibers caused them to contract with a strength 80 percent of what would be seen in newborn animals.

The vascular systems of bioengineered forelimbs transplanted into recipient animals quickly filled with blood, which continued to circulate, and electrical stimulation of muscles within transplanted grafts flexed the wrists and digital joints of the animals’ paws.

The research team also successfully decellularized baboon forearms to confirm the feasibility of using this approach on the scale that would be required for human patients.

Replicating with human cells

Ott notes that, while regrowing nerves within a limb graft and reintegrating them into a recipient’s nervous system is one of the next challenges that needs to be faced, the experience of patients who have received hand transplants is promising.

“In clinical limb transplantation, nerves do grow back into the graft,  enabling both motion and sensation, and we have learned that this process is largely guided by the nerve matrix within the graft. We hope in future work to show that the same will apply to bioartificial grafts.

“Additional next steps will be replicating our success in muscle regeneration with human cells and expanding that to other tissue types, such as bone, cartilage and connective tissue.”

The study was supported by a New Innovator Award from the National Institutes of Health.

The authors note that more than 1.5 million individuals in the U.S. have lost a limb. Over the past two decades, a number of patients have received donor hand transplants, which also expose recipients to the risks of life-long immunosuppressive therapy.


Ott Laboratory | Rat Tissue Decellularization

Abstract of Engineered composite tissue as a bioartificial limb graft

The loss of an extremity is a disastrous injury with tremendous impact on a patient’s life. Current mechanical prostheses are technically highly sophisticated, but only partially replace physiologic function and aesthetic appearance. As a biologic alternative, approximately 70 patients have undergone allogeneic hand transplantation to date worldwide. While outcomes are favorable, risks and side effects of transplantation and long-term immunosuppression pose a significant ethical dilemma. An autologous, bio-artificial graft based on native extracellular matrix and patient derived cells could be produced on demand and would not require immunosuppression after transplantation. To create such a graft, we decellularized rat and primate forearms by detergent perfusion and yielded acellular scaffolds with preserved composite architecture. We then repopulated muscle and vasculature with cells of appropriate phenotypes, and matured the composite tissue in a perfusion bioreactor under electrical stimulation in vitro. After confirmation of composite tissue formation, we transplanted the resulting bio-composite grafts to confirm perfusion in vivo.

Categories: Science

First multi-organ transplant that includes skull and scalp

Kurzweil AI - Sat, 06/06/2015 - 12:40am

James Boyson (credit: CNN)

James Boysen, a 55-year-old software developer from Austin, Texas has become the first patient to receive a scalp and skull transplant while receiving kidney and pancreas transplants.

More than 50 health care professionals from Houston Methodist Hospital and The University of Texas MD Anderson Cancer Center assisted with or supported the double surgery over a period of more than 24 hours.

“This was a very complex surgery because we had to transplant the tissues utilizing microsurgery,” said Michael Klebuc, M.D., the surgeon who led the Houston Methodist Hospital Plastic Surgery Team.

“Imagine connecting blood vessels 1/16 of an inch under a microscope with tiny stitches about half the diameter of a human hair being done with tools that one would use to make a fine Swiss watch.”

In 2006, Boysen was diagnosed with leiomyosarcoma, a rare cancer of the smooth muscle, on his scalp. Successfully treated with chemotherapy and radiation, he was left with a large, deep wound on his head that included the scalp and the full thickness of his skull down to his brain.

In addition to the wound, which would require a major reconstructive undertaking, Boysen’s kidney and pancreas, which were first transplanted in 1992, were failing. Diagnosed with diabetes at age 5, Boysen’s declining condition over the years prompted the original double-organ transplant.

CNN video

 

Categories: Science

How Ready Is IPv6 To Succeed IPv4?

Slashdot - Sat, 06/06/2015 - 12:34am
New submitter unixisc writes: Over the last 2 years, June 6th had been observed as IPv6 day. The first time, IPv6 connections were turned on by participants just for a day, and last year, it was turned on for good. A year later, how successful is the global transition to IPv6? According to Cisco 6labs, adoption rates vary from 50% in Belgium to 6% in China, with the U.S. coming somewhere in the middle at 37%. A lot of issues around IPv6, such as the absence of NAT, have apparently been resolved (NAPT is now available and recognized by the IETF). So what are the remaining issues holding people up — be it ISPs, businesses, consumers or anybody else? When could we be near a year when we could turn off all IPv4 connectivity worldwide on an IPv6 only day and nobody would notice?

Read more of this story at Slashdot.

Categories: Science

Disaster Response 'RoboSimian': What Can It Do? | Video

Space.com - Sat, 06/06/2015 - 12:13am
The Jet Propulsion Laboratory (JPL) robot has 4 limbs and can become quite handy in disaster situations. The robot's mission (and how it could accomplish it) is the subject of the the latest "Crazy Engineering" episode from NASA JPL.
Categories: Science

How To Store Your Data For 1 Million Years

Slashdot - Fri, 05/06/2015 - 11:40pm
Whiteox writes with Fast Company's article about Robert Grass and his team, which is exploring how to use DNA as a data storage mechanism, along with others working on truly long-term storage. Both commercial interests and academic researchers are interested in protecting data not just for years or decades, but for multi-century stretches, right out into the millions. From the article: The idea of storing information on DNA traces back to a Soviet lab in the 1960s, but the first successful implementation wasn't achieved until 2012, when biologist George Church and his colleagues announced in the journal Science that they had encoded one of Church's books in DNA. More recently, reports the New Yorker, the artist Joe Davis, now in residence at Church's lab, has announced plans to encode bits of Wikipedia into a particularly old strain of apple, so that he can create "a living, literal tree of knowledge. "Impressive," writes Whiteox, "but I wonder if our future selves can make life from our archived data?"

Read more of this story at Slashdot.

Categories: Science

Techies Have Been Trying to Replace Politicians for Decades

Wired News - Fri, 05/06/2015 - 11:33pm

We’re talking about Technocracy Inc., an organization founded in 1931 to promote the ideas of a man named Howard Scott.

The post Techies Have Been Trying to Replace Politicians for Decades appeared first on WIRED.









Categories: Science

Ask Slashdot: Options After Google Chrome Discontinues NPAPI Support?

Slashdot - Fri, 05/06/2015 - 10:52pm
An anonymous reader writes: I've been using Google Chrome almost exclusively for more than 3 years. I stopped using Mozilla Firefox because it was becoming bloated and slow, and I migrated all my bookmarks etc. to Chrome. Now Chrome plans to end NPAPI support — which means that I will not be able to access any sites that use Java, and I need this for work. I tried going back to Firefox for a couple of days but it still seems slow — starting it takes time, even the time taken to load a page seems more than Chrome. So what are my options now? Export all my bookmarks and go back to Mozilla Firefox and just learn to live with the performance drop? Or can I tweak Firefox performance in any way? FWIW, I am on a Windows 7 machine at work.

Read more of this story at Slashdot.

Categories: Science