Best of Last Week: Objective reality doesn't exist, Wi-Fi can track you in home, and the Keto diet's effect on the flu

November 18, 2019 by Bob Yirka
wi fi
Credit: CC0 Public Domain

It was a good week for physics as a team with members from MIT, Harvard University, SLAC National Accelerator Laboratory, Stanford University and Argonne National Laboratory carried out an experiment with ultrafast laser pulses that produced a previously unseen phase of matter—a highly ordered charge density wave at right angles to an original CDW. Also, a team at Heriot-Watt University in Edinburgh carried out a study that suggested that objective reality doesn't exist. And a team from the University of Bonn and the University of Cologne reported that they irreversibly split photons by freezing them in a Bose-Einstein condensate.

In technology news, a team with members from the University of Chicago and the University of California, Santa Barbara, showed that hackers could use Wi-Fi to track people inside their homes using only a small, commercially available Wi-Fi receiver outside the target site. And two researchers at Adobe Research and the University of Washington introduced a deep-learning technique to generate real-time lip sync for live 2-D animation—Wilmot Li and Deepali Aneja outlined a system they developed that entails transforming an actor's speech into corresponding mouth movements for an animated character. A team at Purdue University developed a new material that points toward highly efficient solar cells—and it does not involve the use of lead. And an international team of researchers reported that they had discovered vulnerabilities affecting billions of computer chips—they claim to have found a TMP-Fail attack vulnerability in chips from Intel and STMicroelectronics.

In other news, officials at NASA made headlines when they renamed a faraway ice world after a backlash related to the name's Nazi origins—originally named Ultima Thule, after a mythical northern land in classical and medieval European literature, it was changed to "Arrokoth" after a backlash by people offended by the original name's ties to the fabled ancestral home of the "Aryan" people by Nazis. Also, a team at University Medical Center in Germany made the headlines when they announced that they had established how e-cigarettes damage the brain, blood vessels and lungs.

And finally, if you are worried about contracting the flu, you might want to take note of the results of a study conducted by a team at Yale University—they found that the Ketogenic diet helps tame the flu virus by activating certain T cells in the lungs.

© 2019 Science X Network

Citation: Best of Last Week: Objective reality doesn't exist, Wi-Fi can track you in home, and the Keto diet's effect on the flu (2019, November 18) retrieved 25 September 2020 from
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