Cyber-tissue successfully grown

This comes compliments of , a website I highly recommend. And people say the technology in my latest series of books (Code X by Harlequin Romantic Suspense) is implausible. Hah! I'm not even writing about what's really out there on the leading edge of medical research! Genetic engineering is kid stuff compared to this...

Cyborg tissue grown at Harvard.
What's a cyborg? A cybernetic organism, a blending of animal and machine. That's just what researchers at Harvard University have done: they've grown living tissue around an electronic structure.

Fear not; it's not going to jump up and attack us. What they did was to create a conventional collagen lattice of the type that we usually use to grow living tissue and replacement organs, but before seeding it with rat heart cells, they wove nanoscale wires and transistors through the lattice, creating a sensor network. Once the tissue grew into a functioning, beating heart, they were able to read data from it, such as the heart rate.

As a second step, they also grew a tiny half-inch section of human blood vessel in the same manner, creating an "active" blood vessel that's able to sense things like inflammation.

Applications are not clear, but the obvious direction is healthcare. A possible application is the growth and testing of experimental replacement organs without having to use human testing.

Drones in your Neighborhood?

This article shows where every drone launch site in the U.S. is and who's operating it. Some real surprises in the list. I sense a 'Big Brother is Watching You' plot coming on... 

Woman Assassin charged with 20 murders

This article is about a Mexican woman who lead a contract killing gang accused of at least 20 murders. Couldn't make this stuff up if I tried. Of note are the other women pictured with her as members of her gang. Girl power gone terribly wrong...oh, man, I've got to do a gang of anti-Medusa, bad girl villains! I've been toying with the idea for a couple of years, but I can see it now!

May 6, 2012, taken from Huff Post on AOL...

WASHINGTON (AP) — The CIA thwarted an ambitious plot by al-Qaida's affiliate in Yemen to destroy a U.S.-bound airliner using a bomb with a sophisticated new design around the one-year anniversary of the killing of Osama bin Laden, The Associated Press has learned.
The plot involved an upgrade of the underwear bomb that failed to detonate aboard a jetliner over Detroit on Christmas 2009. This new bomb was also designed to be used in a passenger's underwear, but this time al-Qaida developed a more refined detonation system, U.S. officials said.
The FBI is examining the latest bomb to see whether it could have passed through airport security and brought down an airplane, officials said. They said the device did not contain metal, meaning it probably could have passed through an airport metal detector. But it was not clear whether new body scanners used in many airports would have detected it.
The would-be suicide bomber, based in Yemen, had not yet picked a target or bought his plane tickets when the CIA stepped in and seized the bomb, officials said. It's not immediately clear what happened to the alleged bomber.

....oh, man, I smell a book...what happened to the bomber? Who was he? Who did he REALLY work for? Yes, I'm totally a conspiracy theorist at heart. How else would I cook up crazy plot after crazy plot? <cue the maniacal laughter>

villain motivation

So here's an article about an ex-Marine sniper who went on a killing spree and was found on autopsy to have a brain tumor in the region of the brain that affects strong and negative emotions. Tragic in real life, great motivation for a bad guy to become a bad guy...

"Silence Gun" makes it impossible for target to talk

How cool is this? In brief, your target is recorded speaking and then on a .2 second delay, the target's words are played back to them. It so confuses the human brain that the target is rendered unable to dreate coherent speech. I have NO idea how I'll use it in a book, but I have faith I will!

North Korea forges U.S. money that's...real U.S. money

How cool is this? North Korea has the same printing presses, same paper supplier, same ink supplier, and same caliber of plate engravers that we do. They can literally print U.S. dollars that only the best government analysts can tell from the real stuff. And guess what? North Korea is printing $50's and $100's like candy.

Dollar warfare. Economic, I SO see a book in this one...;_ylt=AtNbkaeeyiFZMWDZQ5lCjaes0NUE;_ylu=X3oDMTNsOGhxZm5qBG1pdANUb3BTdG9yeSBGUARwa2cDMmI5ZDJlYTEtZWIyZS0zMjZlLTgyNzEtNWNiMTlkYTkxN2MxBHBvcwMxBHNlYwN0b3Bfc3RvcnkEdmVyA2UxNGQ1MWYwLTVlZTgtMTFlMS1hZGVlLTFmMGQ1ZTUzZTgwYw--;_ylg=X3oDMTFvdnRqYzJoBGludGwDdXMEbGFuZwNlbi11cwRwc3RhaWQDBHBzdGNhdANob21lBHB0A3NlY3Rpb25zBHRlc3QD;_ylv=3