Gizmodo reporter Isaac Schultz writes that MIT scientists have captured images of heat moving through a superfluid, a phenomenon that “may explain how heat moves through certain rare materials on Earth and deep in space.” Schultz notes that the researchers believe their examination of heat flow in a superfluid “can be used to determine heat flow in high-temperature superconductors, or even in neutron stars, the roiling, ultra-dense relics of ordinary stars.”
Prof. Anantha Chandrakasan, dean of the School of Engineering, has been named MIT’s first chief innovation and strategy officer, reports Supriya Singh for New India Abroad. “In his new role, Chandrakasan will work closely with MIT president Sally Kornbluth, key stakeholders across MIT, as well as external partners, to launch initiatives and new collaborations in support of strategic priorities,” explains Singh.
Prof. Erin Kara speaks with Quanta Magazine reporter Michael Greshko about her career as an observational astrophysicist and her work to better understand how black holes behave and reshape galaxies across the universe. “The thing that really got me excited about pursuing astronomy was the discovery aspect: It was just super thrilling to be the first person to look at light that was released from around a black hole a billion years ago,” says Kara.
MIT researchers have developed a new technique “that could allow most large language models (LLMs) like ChatGPT to retain memory and boost performance,” reports Tony Ho Tran for the Daily Beast. “The process is called StreamingLLM and it allows for chatbots to perform optimally even after a conversation goes on for more than 4 million words,” explains Tran.
Prof. Paulo Lozano speaks with Kaity Kline of NPR’s Morning Edition about the space stations of the future and how NASA collaborating with private companies on the development of the next iteration of the International Space Station could spur new technological advancements. “Once you have entrepreneurship and you have a commercial interest, that accelerates technology development,” says Lozano.
Writing for The Boston Globe, Prof. Carlo Ratti addresses New York’s congestion pricing plan – an attempt to prevent traffic build up and improve public transportation – and ways Boston can develop a similar and more effective policy. “With congestion pricing, the city and state can combat the climate emergency, the cost of living crisis, and improve quality of life,” says Ratti. “If they don’t take action now, something even worse will come to pass: Boston will find itself outdone by New York.”
MIT researchers have developed new technology that allows vaccines to be directly inserted into the lymph nodes to target two of the most common mutations in the KRAS gene, which cause roughly one third of all cancers, reports Jaimie Seaton for Scientific American. “The team modified the small vaccine components to include a fatty acid, which enables the vaccine to effectively hitch a ride on albumin, a common protein found throughout the body,” explains Seaton. “Albumin serves as a molecular shuttle bus, with pockets on its surface where fatty acids can bind to it.”
Prof. Xuanhe Zhao speaks with Amerigo Allegretto of AuntMinnie.com about his work developing a new ultrasound sticker that can measure the stiffness of internal organs and could one day be used for early detection and diagnosis of disease. “Due to the huge potential of measuring the rigidity of deep internal organs, we believe we can use this to monitor organ health,” Zhao explains.
Prof. Arnold Barnett speaks with CNN reporter Jacopo Prisco about his forthcoming study examining the safety of air travel. “The main takeaway is that in the period between 2018 and 2022, the worldwide death risk per boarding was one in 13.4 million,” writes Prisco. “That means that if you picked a flight completely at random and just took it, your chance of dying in a plane crash or a terrorist act was about one in 13 million.”
Axios reporter Courtenay Brown spotlights a new report by researchers from MIT and the Brookings Institute that finds poorer counties in the U.S. with lower employment rates have, “attracted a large share of the hundreds of billions of dollars allocated for clean energy projects, semiconductor mega-factories and more.” Brian Deese, an Innovation Fellow at MIT, explains that: “Distressed communities are attracting new clean energy and semiconductor investment at roughly twice the rate of traditional private investment. If this trend continues, it has the potential to change the economic geography of the country and create economic opportunity in parts of this country that too many people have written off in the past.”
In an article co-authored for The Economist, Senior Lecturer Donald Sull explores the impact of artificial intelligence and large language models (LLMs) on corporate company culture. “Leaders who do adopt AI for cultural insights can use these to make their employees happier, lower the odds of reputational disasters and, ultimately, boost their profits,” writes Sull. “Measurement is not the only piece of the ‘successful culture’ puzzle, but it is a crucial one. Culture has always been an enigma at the heart of organizational performance: undoubtedly important, but inscrutable. With AI, meaningful progress can be made in deciphering it.”
Prof. David Rand speaks with VOA News about the potential impact of adding watermarks to AI generated materials. “My concern is if you label as AI-generated, everything that’s AI-generated regardless of whether it’s misleading or not, people essentially are going to stop really paying attention to it,” says Rand.
Researchers from MIT have found that our current retirement savings system “largely favors higher-income and white employees,” reports Remy Samuels for Plan Sponsor. The researchers concluded that “employer matching and tax benefits are more unequally distributed than wages,” explains Samuels. “While the median Black and Hispanic earners receive 75 cents and 79 cents, respectively, for every dollar of earnings received by the median white earner, median Black and Hispanic earners receive only about 50 cents for every dollar of matching contributions that median white earners receive.”
"So much of what I'm trying to teach is really for us to just use the literary arts as an excuse to come together and celebrate being alive," says Joshua Bennett, professor of literature and distinguished chair of the humanities at MIT. His new course, Writing and Reading Poems: Nature Poetry, is a workshop where students get to create various forms of expression and share them with their peers.
The Climate Project at MIT will focus our community’s talent and resources on solving critical climate problems with all possible speed – and will connect us with a range of partners to deliver those technological, behavioral and policy solutions to the world.
A new model, developed by MIT engineers, could be a tool for designers looking to innovate in sneaker design. In collaboration with adidas, the MIT Sports Lab has helped guide the design a 3-D printed mid-sole for a running shoe.
Students and postdocs at MIT are racing to the forefront of the generative AI revolution to start companies so they can use this powerful technology for good. They presented their ideas at the MIT Ignite: Generative AI Entrepreneurship Competition.