May 21/28, 2003   

   Hydrogen storage eased
There is a lot of science left to be worked out before we reach the heavily promoted hydrogen economy. Using hydrogen as a practical fuel for cars means coming up with ways of storing larger quantities of the gas more safely, and getting at it more easily. An extremely porous material made from the same stuff as sunscreen and soda bottles could be the answer.
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Flexible display slims down
Flexible displays are a lot closer to everyday use now that an electronic paper prototype has reached the dimension of thick paper. The black and white display has a good resolution and keeps its composure when bent.

Simulated evolution gets complex
Computers hold the promise of unraveling the details of evolution because they can produce thousands of generations of digital critters quickly, but until recently simulated creatures have been too simple to tell us much. A new crop of artificial organisms is complicated enough to prove that Darwin was right -- seemingly inconsequential changes over many thousands of generations do indeed provide enough fodder for complex functions to evolve. The simulations also yielded a surprise -- harmful mutations can have a big silver lining.

Model explains market movements
The stock market follows the same pattern as earthquakes, the Internet and intracellular networks. A mathematical model plugs in the right numbers to account for seismic shifts in the market. It looks like the behavior of big players, rather than herd mentality, causes the market's big swings. The bad news is there isn't much that can be done about it.

News briefs
Big qubits linked over distance... Software maps group work... Magnesium batteries show mettle... Nanotubes smash length record... DNA sensor changes color... Sensor serves up body slices.

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