Dec 012010
 

Move over, silicon—E. coli’s gunning for your job. Researchers prove that bacteria can store data and solve sodoku. Oh, it can repair highways too.

That’s all well and good, but what if you catch a cold, er, an app, from your PC? “Sorry I couldn’t come earlier, but my gut was up all night rendering a big animated movie…”

http://science.slashdot.org/story/10/11/25/1824252/Hong-Kong-Team-Stores-90GB-of-Data-In-1g-of-Bacteria

“A research team out of the Chinese University of Hong Kong has found a way to do data encryption and storage with bacteria. The project is called ‘Bioencryption,’ and their presentation (as a PDF file) is here.”

“Problem Solving Bacteria Crack Sudoku”

http://science.slashdot.org/story/10/11/17/2229223/Problem-Solving-Bacteria-Crack-Sudoku

“A strain of Escherichia coli bacteria can now solve the logic puzzles – with some help from a group of students at the University of Tokyo, Japan, reports New Scientist. The team begin with 16 types of E. coli, each colony assigned a distinct genetic identity depending on which square it occupied within a four-by-four sudoku grid.The bacteria can also express one of four colours to represent the numerical value of their square. As with any sudoku puzzle, a small number of the grid squares are given a value from the beginning by encouraging the bacteria in these squares to differentiate and take on one of the four colours.The Tokyo team’s sudoku-solving bacteria competed in the International Genetically Engineered Machine competition at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology last week.”

“Bacteria Used To Fix Cracked Concrete”

http://science.slashdot.org/story/10/11/17/182244/Bacteria-Used-To-Fix-Cracked-Concrete “Researchers at the U.K’s University of Newcastle have created a new type of bacteria that generates glue to hold together cracks in concrete structures – that means everything from concrete sidewalks to buildings that have been damaged by earthquakes. When the cells have been germinated, they burrow deep into the concrete until they reach the bottom. At this point, the concrete repair process is activated, and the cells split into three types that produce calcium carbonate crystals, act as reinforcing fibers, and produce glue which acts as a binding agent to fill concrete gaps.”