Science & Tech
Associated Press/Photo by Mark Schiefelbein

Scientists call for moratorium on germline editing

Science | Christian bioethicists say the proposal doesn’t go far enough
by Julie Borg
Posted 3/21/19, 01:10 pm

A group of prominent scientists and bioethicists from seven countries published an editorial in the journal Nature last week calling for a worldwide moratorium on heritable genome editing. They want to prevent any more of their peers from engineering gene-edited babies like Chinese scientist He Jiankui did last year, but Christian ethicists say the proposal falls short.

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Lessons from the lobster

Science | God’s lobster tail design awes bioengineers
by Julie Borg
Posted 3/14/19, 03:36 pm

God gave lobsters hard outer armor to protect them from predators and a segmented tail to propel them quickly through the water. So far, engineers have yet to develop a material as flexible, yet sturdy, as the one God designed for the lobster tail. Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT) researchers recently set up a series of experiments to explore how the translucent membrane that covers lobster tail joints allows the creature flexibility without leaving it vulnerable.

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Secret signals

Technology | Internet-connected voice assistants prove vulnerable to hacking
by Michael Cochrane
Posted 3/07/19, 04:06 pm

Hackers always seem to find a way to exploit emerging technologies, whether by picking the digital locks on cars and hotel rooms or by cloning credit card numbers on a website. The explosion in popularity of artificially intelligent voice assistants such as Alexa and Siri presents a lucrative target for exploitation, and researchers are now discovering special vulnerabilities in voice-recognition technology.

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