Author Archive

The 21st Century Professor: Evaluating the Future of Instruction in Higher Education

Wednesday, September 25th, 2013 | Tags: ,

Editor’s Note: This is a guest post by Jeff Braden, dean of the College of Humanities and Social Sciences and professor of psychology at NC State. Braden is leading a study, funded by the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation, to determine whether computer-based instruction is as effective as conventional classroom instruction in higher education. What

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Researchers Seek to Control Prosthetic Legs with Neural Signals

Monday, September 23rd, 2013 | Tags: , , ,

Most people don’t think about the difference between walking across the room and walking up a flight of stairs. Their brains (and their legs) automatically adjust to the new conditions. But for people using prosthetic legs, there is no automatic link between their bodies and the prosthetics that they need to negotiate the new surroundings.

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LEGO Robot Builders Form Emotional Bond to Their Creations

Thursday, September 19th, 2013 | Tags:

Psychology researchers have found that people who build robots form an emotional bond to their creations – though the bond is different from the sort of attachments people form with other people or pets. The researchers surveyed 16 undergraduates who built robots out of LEGOs as part of a robotics education course. All of the

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Smaller than Small: Why We Measure the Space between Atoms

Tuesday, September 17th, 2013 | Tags: ,

Editor’s Note: This is a guest post by Jacob Jones, an associate professor of materials science and engineering at NC State. We study the movement of incredibly small things. How small is small? Think smaller than “nano.” Think smaller than atoms themselves. We measure the infinitesimally small shifts in the positions of atoms to electrical

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How Computer Models Help Keep the Lights On In Kenya

Thursday, September 12th, 2013 | Tags: , , , ,

In Kenya, water is power. Literally. And to keep the lights on, Kenyan authorities want to know how much water they can expect in upcoming rainy seasons. That’s where computer models come in. Fifty-eight percent of Kenya’s power supply stems from the country’s hydropower system in the Tana River basin. That system will shut down

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