Controlling a NASA robot on the web

Computer scientists from Brown University and the University of Texas–Austin visited NASA’s Johnson Space Center for a week-long hackathon to provide computers and tablets with a simple web interface that can operate complex systems for the remote control of robots.

NSF funds research on bio-informed ‘smart lights’

A new collaboration between sleep researchers and engineers at Brown University, funded by the National Science Foundation, may be the first step toward “smart lighting” that tunes the interior environment — the wavelength, intensity, direction, and other factors of artificial light — to accommodate human biological rhythms of sleep and wakefulness.

Provost Colvin to address 251st Opening Convocation

Brown University Provost Vicki Leigh Colvin will deliver the 251st Opening Convocation address to the campus community, including new undergraduate, graduate, and medical school students beginning their studies at Brown this fall. The ceremony begins at 4 p.m. Tuesday, Sept. 2, 2014, on the College Green.
Nursing homes

Care improves with culture change

Nursing homes that invest in “culture change” can develop a more residential and less hospital-like feel. Culture change also allows residents and front-line care workers more of a say in how homes operate. A new study finds that the practice produces important benefits in quality of care, but only when the changes are implemented extensively.

Driving brain rhythm makes mice more sensitive to touch

In a new study researchers show that they could make faint sensations more vivid by triggering a brain rhythm that appears to shift sensory attention. The study in mice, reported in Nature Neuroscience, provides the first direct evidence that the brain’s “gamma” rhythms have a causal role in processing the sense of touch.

Perry awarded Anzaldúa book prize

The National Women’s Studies Association will present its Gloria E. Anzaldúa book prize to Keisha-Khan Perry, associate professor of Africana studies, in San Juan, Puerto Rico, this November.

$4.5M grant will test videos for advance directives

A new NIH-funded project will assess whether videos can help nursing home residents, family members, and staff have the difficult but important conversations about advance directives for care.

Ebola supplies heading to Liberia

As parts of Africa continue to battle the outbreak of Ebola virus, protective equipment — masks, gowns, gloves and more — are at a premium for front-line health workers. Infectious disease staff at Brown and The Miriam Hospital have chipped in, purchased supplies, and sent them to health workers in Liberia.
Questions for Dr. Ian Michelow

Ebola virus biology and research

Terrible suffering in Western Africa has refocused the world’s attention on Ebola viruses, for which there is no vaccine or cure. The viruses are masters of their attack, but researchers are working hard to fight them, said Dr. Ian Michelow, who has studied an approach.

Huidekoper to retire in February

In a letter to the campus community today, President Christina Paxson announced that Beppie Huidekoper, executive vice president for finance and administration, will retire in February 2015 after 12 years of service.

Intimacy a strong motivator for PrEP HIV prevention

Many HIV-negative gay or bisexual men in steady relationships with other HIV-negative men don’t always use condoms out of a desire for intimacy. That same desire, according to a new study, makes such men more inclined to use antiretroviral medications to prevent getting HIV, a practice known as PrEP.

Exhibition examines Guantánamo’s history

The Guantánamo Public Memory Project is an international traveling exhibition, co-curated by Brown students, that seeks to broaden the public perception and history of the U.S. naval station in Cuba. The exhibition, with a series of corresponding events, opens in Providence Tuesday, Sept 2, 2014.

Med students take ALS ice challenge

To support a new classmate, about 30 students in the new Alpert Medical School class took the ALS ice bucket challenge together Friday Aug. 15.

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