Technology Bits

Some interesting stories from the last few days:
PlayStation turns supercomputer

“Scientists at the US National Center for Supercomputing Applications, (NCSA) have linked together 70 PlayStation 2s to find out how good they are at crunching numbers.”

Broadband balloons take off

“It has long been assumed that affordable, high-speed broadband to every area of the UK was only possible via road-disrupting cable laying or expensive satellite connections.
But a company called SkyLinc has found a happy medium in base stations, floating 1.5km above the surface of the Earth on balloons, or tethered aerostats as they are more technically known.
The technology behind the idea has been around for years, with the US Government operating several such aerostats as communication systems on its borders and the US military employing similar technology for about 50 years.”

Bubbles Oust Viruses in Therapy

” Dutch researchers say they’ve demonstrated a way to use sound waves to manipulate microscopic bubbles so that they can deliver DNA and other molecules, such as drugs, into cells.
The goal is to reduce geneticists’ reliance on viruses to deliver genes into cells, a method that has led to cancers in some patients, said University of Twente physicist Claus-Dieter Ohl.”