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In the Media

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Stat

A team of scientists, including researchers at MIT, are attempting to treat gastrointestinal disorders by using a foam that delivers low-levels of carbon monoxide to the body, reports Akila Muthukumar for STAT. “Every therapeutic, including food or water, is toxic when taken at certain levels,” said Prof. Gio Traverso. “It’s important to recognize that when delivered or administered appropriately, things can also have benefits.”

Time Magazine

Siblings Gia Schneider ‘99 and Abe Schneider SM ‘03 co-founded Natel, a company dedicated to developing sustainable, climate-resilient hydropower, reports Amy Gunia for TIME. “The siblings hope that what they’re doing can help demonstrate a more sustainable approach to renewable energy – proving that companies shouldn’t have to choose between what’s good for the environment and what works economically,” writes Gunia.

WBUR

Prof. Donald Sadoway is the recipient of the 2022 European Inventor Award for his work in liquid metal batteries, reports WBUR. “MIT says the battery could enable the long-term storage of renewable energy,” says WBUR.

Forbes

Lecturer Bill Fischer writes for Forbes after speaking with Prof. Annika Steiber, director of Menlo College’s Silicon Valley RenDanheYi Research Center, about the organizational changes General Electric Appliances (GEA) has made in recent years. “GEA, today, represents what has turned-out to be a successful major organizational turnaround,” writes Fischer.

New Scientist

Using techniques from molecular gastronomy, Prof. Giovanni Traverso and his colleagues have created a carbon monoxide foam that may be able to treat gastrointestinal disorders by delivering low-levels of the gas to the body, reports Grace Wade for New Scientist. “I don’t know if there is another foam out there used to deliver therapeutic gases,” says Traverso. “This opens up a whole new way of how we think about therapeutics.”

Stat

A study co-authored by MIT researchers finds that algorithms based on clinical medical notes can predict the self-identified race of a patient, reports Katie Palmer for STAT. “We’re not ready for AI — no sector really is ready for AI — until they’ve figured out that the computers are learning things that they’re not supposed to learn,” says Principal Research Scientist Leo Anthony Celi.

Bloomberg

Prof. Simon Johnson has been working with Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelenskiy’s economic advisors to build a plan for Ukraine, reports Daniel Flatley for Bloomberg. “The plan, as Johnson sees it, would leverage the interest that insurance companies and other firms have in facilitating the oil trade and use it to enforce the ban,” explains Flatley.

Automotive News

Research scientist Bryan Reimer and his colleagues have been collecting data from vehicles with driver-assist technology for the last seven years, writes Pete Bigelow for Automotive News. “We desperately need to understand the denominators, the frequency of events and the behaviors underlying them to understand the benefits and limitations of automated and assisted driving,” says Reimer. “We need to understand which aspects are working well and which ones need refining.”

New York Times

Ken Knowlton PhD ’62 - a pioneer in the science and art of computer graphics and the creator of some of the first computer-generated pictures, portraits and movies - died June 16 at the age of 91, reports Cade Metz for The New York Times. “Knowlton was the only person to ever use the BEFLIX language – he and his colleagues quickly replaced it with other tools and techniques – the ideas behind this technology would eventually overhaul the movie business,” writes Metz.

The Conversation

Graduate student Anna Ivanova and University of Texas at Austin Professor Kyle Mahowald, along with Professors Evelina Fedorenko, Joshua Tenenbaum and Nancy Kanwisher, write for The Conversation that even though AI systems may be able to use language fluently, it does not mean they are sentient, conscious or intelligent. “Words can be misleading, and it is all too easy to mistake fluent speech for fluent thought,” they write.

Forbes

Astronomers have identified two Earth-sized exoplanets orbiting a red dwarf star 33 light years away, reports Jamie Carter for Forbes. “Both planets in this system are each considered among the best targets for atmospheric study because of the brightness of their star,” explains postdoc Michelle Kunimoto.

New Scientist

CSAIL graduate student Yunzhu Li and his colleagues have trained a robot to use two metal grippers to mold letters out of play dough, reports Jeremy Hsu for New Scientist. "Li and his colleagues trained a robot to use two metal grippers to mould the approximate shapes of the letters B, R, T, X and A out of Play-Doh," explains Hsu. "The training involved just 10 minutes of randomly manipulating a block of the modelling clay beforehand, without requiring any human demonstrations."

Inside Intelligence

Prof. Tom Kochan speaks with Inside Intelligence reporter Christina Obolenskaya about the expectations for unionized workplaces and how that will impact retailers. “The most critical thing is to listen and treat the workforce with respect, allowing employees to shape how they come back to work,” says Kochan. “Having a dialogue with the larger team, managers and supervisors need to collaborate on how much flexibility they can provide their employees while still meeting company quotas.”

Fast Company

Rob Morris PhD ’14 has dedicated his career to easing access to mental health services online, reports Shalene Gupta for Fast Company. “When you search for a flight on Google, you get directed to these options that make you instantly buy a flight,” he says. “The interface is beautiful. But when you look up mental health, it’s not great. I want to do for mental health what Google did for flights.”

The Boston Globe

A forthcoming study by Prof. Erik Lin-Greenberg finds that the use of drones in the military could lower the risk of escalating an existing conflict, reports Kevin Lewis for The Boston Globe. Lin-Greenberg “presented members of the military with scenarios in which a US reconnaissance aircraft is shot down by a surface-to-air-missile from a hostile country,” writes Lewis. “The military decision-makers generally felt they had to escalate with force when the downed aircraft was manned, whereas that was generally not the case with a drone.”