MIT model explains how the brain can learn novel tasks while still remembering what it has already learned.
Wearables on the web
MIT's Wearable Computing web page was among four "nice places I've discovered on those aimless [Internet] surfing trips," wrote Dave Farrell for his October 8 syndicated UPI column about the net.
"The next big thing in computing is wearable computers, and there's no better place to see this future trend than at the futuristic computing labs at MIT," Mr. Farrell wrote. "This is where you can go today to see how you will be working and playing with your computer tomorrow." Go to http://www.media.mit.edu/projects/wearables/.
Two MIT professors were quoted in recent stories about the pair who shared this year's Nobel prize in economics.
"Dan is the rare economist who is open to people and ideas from other disciplines, like psychology and sociology," Professor Moshe Ben-Akiva of civil and environmental engineering said of Daniel L. McFadden in the October 12 Washington Post. Writer Steven Pearlstein reported that Professor Ben-Akiva, a frequent collaborator with the new laureate, said that "while most economists are content to assume that people act rationally in making key decisions about their lives... McFadden has found ways to build some irrationality into his models."
McFadden, who shared this year's prize with James J. Heckman for work on the statistical analysis of individual and household behavior, began his prize-winning research at MIT. He taught at MIT from 1978-91 and still teaches here in the summer. He is the 19th MIT professor and 47th current or former member of the MIT community to win a Nobel Prize.
In an October 12 Los Angeles Times story, Institute Professor Emeritus and Nobel laureate Paul Samuelson also commented on the new laureates. "I don't think people had forecast this choice in the various office pools at the economics departments, but I think people at the frontier of research will be very pleased. Both are good, careful researchers," he said.
Living in space
Professor Laurence Young and Associate Professor Dava Newman, both of the Department of Aeronautics and Astronautics, were featured on ABC News' World News Tonight on October 30. The two were interviewed for a story called "Living in Space." Professor Newman was shown next to a spinning bed that provides "artificial gravity" in space that could facilitate astronauts' overall performance.
Professors Young and Newman are both affiliated with the National Space Biomedical Research Institute (NSBRI), created to "prevent or solve health problems related to long-duration space travel and prolonged weightlessness." Professor Young is director of NSBRI.
"It may be a thrill, but someone's got to pay the bills." -- Peter Young, a senior lecturer in aeronautics and astronautics, about NASA's efforts to give universities access to the retired Advanced Communications Technology Satellite (ACTS). His comments were included in a September 25 story about ACTS in Space News.
A version of this article appeared in MIT Tech Talk on November 15, 2000.