Clinical labs have used Sherlock to identify bacteria quickly and inexpensively. Now that bioterrorism is considered a serious threat, the analyzer from MIDI Inc. is also being used to detect biowarfare agents. To shorten the time needed to determine which agents are being used, Sherlock was recently upgraded with 32-bit hardware. The Agilent 6850 GC gas chromatograph system is the hardware base, making it possible to do tests quickly for under $3 per sample.
The amount of plastic clogging the ocean continues to grow. Some startling, not-so-good news has come out recently about the roles plastic is playing in the ocean, as well as more heartening news about efforts to collect and reuse it.
Some of our culture's most enduring robots appeared in the 80s. The Aliens series produced another evil android, and we saw light robot fare in the form of Short Circuit. Two of the great robots of all time also showed up: The Terminator and RoboCop.
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