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16 January 2019

Claims that bilingualism keeps brains young could be ‘wishful thinking’

Speaking two languages is a highly valuable skill but is an unlikely defence against age-related cognitive decline as previously thought, according to new research on ageing and bilingualism.
15 January 2019

The apps that can tell you if you’re buying sustainably

What does sustainable shopping look like? From environmental impact to workers’ rights, the term can cover so many aspects that buying sustainably can be a daunting task. But a new app that helps people select supermarket products by ethical preferences and an online database that brings transparency to supply chains aim to change that.
11 January 2019

Drone jamming system to protect European airports, public spaces

Airports could be equipped with technology capable of detecting and bringing down drones that stray into their air space, according to Dan Hermansen, chief technology officer of Danish anti-drone firm MyDefence. The company has developed a drone alarm and protection system that is being installed at a number of prominent sites around Europe, including an airport. It has the potential to prevent the kind of costly disruption that hit London’s Gatwick and Heathrow airports recently.
10 January 2019

Hyperlocal radio and do-it-yourself networks bring information closer to home

Modern communications technology means one can find anything, anywhere around the world, on the internet and via mobile phones. But people still live in communities and need information that is relevant to them.
09 January 2019

Understanding immune system switches will spark new drugs

Identifying the chemical switches that turn different parts of our immune system on and off is opening up new avenues for treating diseases such as Parkinson’s, Alzheimer’s, cancer and rheumatoid arthritis – and potential new uses for discarded drugs, according to Professor Luke O’Neill, an immunologist at Trinity College Dublin, Ireland.
08 January 2019

Noise and motion links to dyslexia pave way for early diagnosis

Most children are able to learn language almost effortlessly. But for those with communication disorders such as dyslexia, mastering their native tongue can be a challenge. Researchers are exploring how links with noise, language and motion could help diagnose problems earlier and pave the way for better treatment.
07 January 2019

Age and foaming: how to predict when a volcano will erupt

The eruption of a volcano can have devastating consequences – killing people and destroying livelihoods, as well as releasing vast amounts of ash into the sky that disrupts air travel and alters the climate. Knowing what goes on underground, however, would facilitate better warnings for when an eruption will occur – and help save lives while keeping damage to a minimum.
03 January 2019

The internet is helping to revive minority languages

Europe’s minority languages have been squeezed by nation-building, urbanisation and the ‘lingua francas’ of the internet, according to Professor Anneli Sarhimaa, specialist in Northern European and Baltic languages and cultures at the University of Mainz, Germany. But one lesson she has learned from researching the fate of the Finnic language Karelian, spoken in Finland and north-western Russia, is that digital media can also help revitalise them.
03 January 2019

Language lessons

The languages we speak and how we speak them are an integral part of our identity, shaping not only how we see the world but also how people see us. In January, Horizon puts language under the spotlight, kicking off the month with a look at Europe’s minority languages and how to preserve them. We also delve into the social and cognitive aspects of language use, finding out how accents arise and how they affect people’s perception of the speaker, and discovering how ageing affects linguistic capacity in bilingual people – and vice versa. We also speak to researchers looking into the language impairment dyslexia and potential options for early diagnosis.
02 January 2019

Intelligent prostheses and electric aircraft - what to look out for in 2019

A €30 carbon price in 100 countries, proof that gene editing can correct epilepsy, and the ability to pinpoint the location of fast radio bursts from space thanks to new telescopes are just some of the breakthroughs that European scientists told Horizon would make the biggest difference to their field in 2019.