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Research Laboratory of Electronics

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Technology Review

Technology Review reporter Will Knight spotlights how MIT researchers have developed a new chip that is many times more efficient than silicon chips and could help bring AI to a multitude of devices where power is limited. “We need new hardware because Moore’s law has slowed down,” explains Prof. Vivienne Sze.

Xinhuanet

MIT researchers have found that a small gelatinous structure, called the tectorial membrane, gives the human ear its extraordinary ability to detect faint sounds, reports the Xinhua news agency. The findings “could help devise ways to treat hearing impairment via medical interventions that alter the pores or the properties of the fluid in the membrane.”

Engadget

Engadget reporter Jon Fingas writes that MIT researchers have developed a tiny computer chip small enough to fit on a honeybee-sized drone that can help the drone navigate. The technology could eventually be applied to, “smart pills that navigate to where they're needed, or virtually any vehicle that may need to last for a very long time on one battery charge.”

The Verge

MIT researchers have designed a new chip that could advance the development of computers that operate like the human brain, reports James Vincent for The Verge. The development could, “lead to processors that run machine learning tasks with lower energy demands — up to 1,000 times less. This would enable us to give more devices AI abilities like voice and image recognition.”

Newsweek

Newsweek reporter Katherine Hignett writes that MIT and Harvard researchers have successfully manipulated individual atoms using lasers in one of the largest quantum computer simulations. Hignett writes that, “their technology could help make superfast quantum computers a working reality.”

Boston Globe

Boston Globe reporter Alyssa Meyers writes that researchers from MIT and Harvard have demonstrated one of the largest quantum simulators that can trap individual atoms in laser beams. Prof. Vladan Vuletić explains that it is, “a major advance is to be able to align and arrange individual atoms so we can hold on to them and track them.”

Boston.com

Boston.com reporter Erica Yee highlights several Boston-area residents who were named to Forbes’ “30 under 30” list, including MIT postdoctoral associate Yichen Shen, who was honored for his work with nanophotonic breakthroughs, and undergraduate Jenny Xu, who was recognized for her work creating popular mobile games.

Boston Globe

Using video to processes shadows, MIT researchers have developed an algorithm that can see around corners, writes Alyssa Meyers for The Boston Globe. “When you first think about this, you might think it’s crazy or impossible, but we’ve shown that it’s not if you can understand the physics of how light propagates,” says lead author and MIT graduate Katie Bouman.

Newsweek

CSAIL researchers have developed a system that detects objects and people hidden around blind corners, writes Anthony Cuthbertson for Newsweek. “We show that walls and other obstructions with edges can be exploited as naturally occurring ‘cameras’ that reveal the hidden scenes beyond them,” says lead author and MIT graduate Katherine Bouman.

New Scientist

MIT researchers have developed a new system that can spot moving objects hidden from view by corners, reports Douglas Heaven for New Scientist. “A lot of our work involves finding hidden signals you wouldn’t think would be there,” explains lead author and MIT graduate Katie Bouman. 

Marketplace

Aaron Schrank reports for Marketplace that the textile industry is experiencing a revival as it creates more technologically advanced fabrics. Schrank highlights the Advanced Functional Fabrics of America (AFFOA) Institute, led by Prof. Yoel Fink, where researchers have developed programmable backpacks that should be able to “send you an email when they get lost."

CNN

This CNN video highlights the new programmable backpack unveiled during the grand opening of the AFFOA headquarters in Cambridge. MIT alumnus Tairan Wang, COO of AFFOA, explains that the backpack is made with a programmable fabric that allows users to share information. The technology addresses how people initially connect, Wang explains. 

Boston Herald

The launch of the AFFOA headquarters featured demos of two new smart fabrics, including a programmable backpack and fabric that uses LED lights to stream information to the wearer, writes Donna Goodison for the Boston Herald. Prof. Yoel Fink, AFFOA’s CEO, explains that, “the way to changing what fabrics are involves changing what fibers are.”

Boston Globe

Boston Globe reporter Hiawatha Bray writes that at the launch of the AFFOA headquarters, researchers unveiled smart fabrics that can send messages, tune in audio signals and more. Bray writes that Prof. Yoel Fink, CEO of AFFOA, explained that “because the new fibers can process data like a computer…engineers will be able to develop an endless array of ways to use it.”

WBUR

Zeninjor Enwemeka reports for WBUR on the opening of the Advanced Functional Fabrics of America (AFFOA) headquarters, during which the center’s first fabric products were unveiled. Enwemeka explains the, “big idea here is to develop fabrics that provide services. The folks at AFFOA think fabrics are the next software.”