3D Printer Helps Create Bionic Eye

An LED 3D printer at Princeton has integrated quantum dot LEDs with a standard contact lens to create a device capable of projecting beams of coloured light. Essentially, an artificial eye. Though not wearable, it is an important step forward in the creation of 3D printed electronics.

Michael McAlpine, Assistant Professor of Mechanical and Aerospace Engineering at Princeton University’s McAlpine Research Group said, “This shows that we can use 3D printing to create complex electronics including semiconductors. We were able to 3D print an entire device, in this case an LED. We used the quantum dots [also known as nanoparticles] as an ink. We were able to generate two different colours, orange and green.”

The bionic eye is part of a larger project at the McAlpine Research Group, aiming to augment and/or replace defective body parts. In 2013, the team used living tissue with a 3D printer to create an artificial ear, with an embedded cochlea implant.

Source: CNET

Facebook’s Emotion Manipulation Study Angers Users

study was published recently showing that in January 2012, Facebook manipulated 689,003 members feeds to display a larger amount of positive or negative status updates. Running over a one week duration, this information was used to show that the moods of your friends on social media can affect your own mood positively or negatively on a day to day basis.

This manipulation has sparked outrage by some, claiming a lack of ethical practice – especially seeing as the ‘subjects’ were not notified of this study.

As far as legality is concerned, Facebook is in the clear as users agree to give up their data for analysis, testing and research upon sign up. However, the angered users aren’t claiming issues with the data collected, they’re upset that their feeds were manipulated without consultation.

Addressing the issue, a Facebook spokesman stated:

“This research was conducted for a single week in 2012 and none of the data used was associated with a specific person’s Facebook account. We do research to improve our services and to make the content people see on Facebook as relevant and engaging as possible. A big part of this is understanding how people respond to different types of content, whether it’s positive or negative in tone, news from friends, or information from pages they follow. We carefully consider what research we do and have a strong internal review process. There is no unnecessary collection of people’s data in connection with these research initiatives and all data is stored securely.” The Atlantic

Adam D.I Kramer (being one of the studies authors and a Facebook employee) gave his thoughts through a comment on a public Facebook status:

“And at the end of the day, the actual impact on people in the experiment was the minimal amount to statistically detect it,” he writes. “Having written and designed this experiment myself, I can tell you that our goal was never to upset anyone. […] In hindsight, the research benefits of the paper may not have justified all of this anxiety.” The Atlantic

So although Facebook users do agree to share their information, technically they aren’t in agreeance with the alteration of their data (in this case, news feeds).

Susan Fiske, a Princeton University psychology professor helped edit this study also shared some thoughts on the issue:

“It’s ethically okay from the regulations perspective, but ethics are kind of social decisions. There’s not an absolute answer. And so the level of outrage that appears to be happening suggests that maybe it shouldn’t have been done…I’m still thinking about it and I’m a little creeped out, too.” The Atlantic

Facebook has been rumored to partake in data manipulation studies like this more often than you may think. Should this access of data make you worried? Honestly the general population aren’t going to batt an eyelid, as long as they can access their fair share of recycled memes and baby photos.

Image courtesy of Post Grad Problems

Facebook Predicts The University of Princeton’s Future, No More Students By 2021?

The University of Princeton has recently made a study, predicting that Facebook will lose more than 80% of its users by 2021. But apparently, that prediction did not go too well with Facebook’s officials.

It appears that Facebook analysts now claim that the University of Princeton will lose half of its students by 2018, and there will be no more students at the university by 2021. Facebook’s analysts use the same principle based on which the original Facebook prediction was based, and came up with the numbers, which can be seen on a dedicated Facebook page called Debunking Princeton.

“In keeping with the scientific principle “correlation equals causation”, our research unequivocally demonstrated that Princeton may be in danger of disappearing entirely,” said Facebook’s Mike Develin.

He claimed Facebook likes and Google searches had shown an alarming trend for the university based in New Jersey. He added: “This trend suggests that Princeton will have only half its current enrollment by 2018, and by 2021 it will have no students at all, agreeing with the previous graph of scholarly scholarliness.”

He also made a statement about the air disappearing in time, but after that, Mr. Develin admitted he just wanted to prove a point involving the study made and that not all studies are accurate.

“We don’t really think Princeton or the world’s air supply is going anywhere soon. We love Princeton (and air),” he said. “Not all research is created equal – and some methods of analysis lead to pretty crazy conclusions.”

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