TTI/Vanguard Newsletter: November 18, 2022

This Washington Post article highlights the importance of a healthy gut microbiome to the efficacy of immunotherapy for cancer patients. At [next] in Scottsdale in a few weeks, Sandrine Miller-Montgomery will speak to this very matter, while Rosa Krajmalnik-Brown will share her research on the positive potential of improving gut health for patients with Autism Spectrum Disorder. (Jeannette Wing, virtual conference, Sep 2021; Jessica Richman, Austin, Feb 2016; Larry Smarr, San Jose, Feb 2012)

Up next: a little newsletter trip down memory lane that underscores how TTI/Vanguard can provide a head start into the future—or help to invent it. Incidentally, that is precisely what Tim Andrews will be speaking on [next]; we encourage any member that has yet to heed Kelly Baughman’s nudges to register should do so today.

It’s been a long time coming, but Don Sadoway’s startup Ambri has matured to the point of commercializing the liquid metal battery technology for modular grid-scale storage that he shared with TTI/V community during the 2010 [next] conference in Charlotte. Click here to read the article.

Slightly more recently, we got the low-down on lab-grown meat from Nynke van der Akker (Vienna, Jul 2013). The new kid on the grow-it-in-bulk-in-the-lab block is blood. Researchers in the UK are commencing clinical trials of blood transfusions with blood grown from adult stem cells. The hope is to eventually satisfy the needs of people with rare blood types or diseases. Click here to read the article.

OkCupid’s Christian Rudder (Philadelphia, Jul 2015) made explicit what many already expected: that the initial judgment of online daters was based on looks above all other criteria. A new crop of blind-dating apps is removing appearance as a top-line delineator, an approach that appears appealing to members of Gen Z. Click here to read the article.

Display technologies come in all sorts: LCD, OLED, electrowetting (Richard Jessop, Washington, D.C., Dec 2005), projectable (Joseph Katz, San Diego, Nov 2002)—and now “stretchable, smooshable.” A variation on the OLED theme, LG’s new screen design promises to be thinner, lighter, vibrant, and physically distorted without damage. Click here to read the article.

The future of work (James Bessen, Boston, Mar 2022; Automation and the Future of Work conference, Pittsburgh, Jun 2019) is looking different now than it did even a couple of weeks ago for the multitude of professional workers who have been—or are about to be—laid off by tech giants. But it’s not only well-paid Silicon Valley workers who are affected; contract workers and employees of outsourcing firms throughout the Global South are also experiencing an impact on their livelihoods. Click here to read the article.

A team of Bulgarian theoretical physicists have devised a potential method to detect wormholes and differentiate them observationally from black holes based on gravitational lensing and polarization of radiation. Furthermore, some might have already been observed. Click here to read the article.

Closer to home, astronomically speaking, NASA’s Artemis 1 is on its way to the Moon after a series of delays. Riding aboard is Commander Moonikin Campos, a data-gathering mannequin that will reveal the stresses that future passengers could experience, along with a whole host of CubeSats that will self-launch and conduct a range of lunar, communications, asteroidal, and other experiments. (Jordi Puig-Suari, Boston, Apr 2017) Click here to read the article.

“Wormholes were first introduced to the public over a century ago in a book written by an Oxford mathematician. Perhaps realizing that adults might frown on the idea of multiply connected spaces, he wrote the book under a pseudonym and wrote it for children, His name was Charles Dodgson, his pseudonym was Lewis Carroll, and the book was “Through the Looking Glass.”—Michio Kaku