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Robots may someday operate without doctors

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Gizmorama - Robots may someday operate without doctors
"The Cutting Edge of Science Fact and Science Possibilities"
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Good Morning,
TGIF! I hope you have found out some interesting facts in this
weeks Gizmo issues. Happy Mother's Day to all of the Mom's 
on the list. Have a relaxing and enjoyable weekend! I'm headed 
to the greenhouse today to pick up my annual plants,
hopefully the weather will stay nice and I can get some planting
done. 

See You Monday,
Erin

Questions? Comments? Email me at: mailto:gizmo@gophercentral.com 
Email your comments 

P.S. You can discuss this issue or any other topic in the new 
Gizmorama forum. Check it out here...
http://archives.gophercentral.com/forum/forums/forum-view.asp?fid=23

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	  Robots may someday operate without doctors

U.S. engineers say the world is moving closer to the day when 
robots will perform surgery with minimal or no guidance from 
a doctor. Duke University researchers say their feasibility 
studies may represent the first concrete steps toward achieving 
such a space age vision of the future. For their experiments, 
the engineers used a rudimentary tabletop robot whose "eyes" 
used a 3-D ultrasound technology. An artificial intelligence 
program served as the robot's "brain," taking real-time 3-D 
information, processing it and giving the robot commands to 
perform. "In a number of tasks, the computer was able to direct 
the robot's actions," said Stephen Smith, director of the 
university's Ultrasound Transducer Group. "We believe this is 
the first proof-of-concept for this approach. "Given that we 
achieved these early results with a rudimentary robot and a 
basic artificial intelligence program, the technology will 
advance to the point where robots -- without the guidance of 
the doctor -- can someday operate on people." The research 
appears online in the journal IEEE Transactions on Ultrasonics,
Ferroelectrics and Frequency Control. A second study, published 
in the April issue of the journal Ultrasonic Imaging, 
demonstrated the robot could successfully perform a 
simulated needle biopsy.

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	 New technology cuts hospitalization need

U.S. researchers say a new telecommunication technology, 
Telehealth, is delaying hospital stays when compared with 
patients receiving traditional care. A University of Missouri 
researcher said Telehealth interventions by telephone or 
videophone after hospitalizations have the potential to allow 
earlier detection of key clinical symptoms, triggering early 
intervention from providers and reducing the need for patient 
hospitalization. "Telehealth does not necessarily change the 
care providers give," said Associate Professor Bonnie Wakefield. 
"Rather, it changes the communication channel between clinicians 
and patients to minimize geographic barriers and enhance delivery 
of service," Wakefield said. "According to patients, it is not 
important how the interaction happens, but just that it happens.
"People who suffer from chronic illnesses usually wait three to 
six months between office appointments with their care providers," 
she said. "With video and telephone technology, nurses have the 
ability to interact regularly with patients and provide a sense 
of security. Patients discuss concerns on a frequent basis, and 
nurses give advice and detect problems that the patient might 
not notice." The study is to be published in the Journal of 
Telemedicine and e-Health.

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	 Saturn's atmosphere 'waves' to Earth

U.S. space agency scientists say they've observed a wave 
pattern, or oscillation, in Saturn's atmosphere that's only 
visible from Earth every 15 years. The National Aeronautics 
and Space Administration said the discovery came from a 22-year 
Earth-based program of observing Saturn -- the longest space 
temperature study ever recorded -- as well as the Cassini 
spacecraft's observations of temperature changes in Saturn's 
atmosphere. The Cassini infrared results indicate Saturn's wave 
pattern is similar to a wave pattern found in Earth's upper 
atmosphere. The earthly oscillation takes about two years, 
while a similar pattern on Jupiter takes more than four Earth 
years. Glenn Orton of NASA's Jet Propulsion Laboratory said 
patience is the key to studying changes during the course of 
a Saturnian year -- the equivalent of about 30 Earth years.
"You could only make this discovery by observing Saturn over 
a long period of time," said Orton, lead author of the ground-
based research. "It's like putting together 22 years worth of 
puzzle pieces, collected by a hugely rewarding collaboration 
of students and scientists from around the world on various 
telescopes." The findings of both the Cassini and Earth-based 
observations appear in the journal Nature.

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