Japanese scientists create robot [insert word here]

The Japanese are certainly robot crazy. The latest creation is the skiing robot. Prior to that we have the hybrid insect robot and the dancing cuttlefish robot. They are also working on creating more human-like robots. However they played little part in the robotic recreation of Philip K Dick, which apparently escaped the captivity of its masters and the Black Iron Prison when it went missing in 2006.

All of this has been rendered obsolete of course by the invention of the robogeisha.

Intelligent Slime Kicks all of the Arse

Here’s a pretty goddam awesome story about slime moulds learning and anticipating. These Japanese scientists have found that they can hit the mould with a cold snap on every hour, and after a while, holy shit, the thing learns to expect it. It learns and remembers. Keep in mind: slime moulds have no brain.

Actually, this isn’t terribly new, as there have previously been stories about slime moulds solving mazes and controlling robots. The robot story is particularly cool because the first thing the light-sensitive slime does is use its new six legs to scuttle the fuck off to a dark place.

Plus, how cool does that photo look? Hat-tip to Discover‘s Top 100 Stories of 2008.

Everybody’s Got AIDS

Interestingly, AIDS is also Aids in the Oxford Dictionary. No, that’s not interesting. That’s boring. And frustrating.

Anyway, gangsta geneticists from the South Sweden Massif are a step closer to a vaccine for HIV. How’d they do it? Oh, just took a gene from the HIV virus and transferred it into a bacterium, which then passed it on to a MOTHERFUCKING PLANT, which started producing the BITCHIN’ HIV-IDENTIFYING PROTEIN, and which they then FED TO GODDAM MICE and the mice started PRODUCING ANTIBODIES, HOMES.

In other news, studies have shown that making science stories a little more gangsta increases their palatability.

Back to the original news, the plan is to feed the world the HIV vaccine in fucking carrots. Holy shit. Life is cool.

I wonder how much those carrots will cost.