Nanotechnology Now

Our NanoNews Digest Sponsors





Heifer International

Wikipedia Affiliate Button


DHgate

Home > Press > Saving Virtual Lives With Nanobots

Abstract:
Computer Science Student to Compete in World Semifinals of Microsoft Competition

Saving Virtual Lives With Nanobots Goal of UH-led Project

Houston, TX | May 12, 2005

Building and controlling a team of nanobots to seek and destroy infected tissue within a simulated terminally ill patient, a University of Houston computer science student and his teammate have advanced to the 2005 Microsoft Imagine Cup world semifinals.

With two consecutive wins so far, Jonathan Dowdall, a UH graduate student, and Mike Hall, his collaborator, have advanced to round three of four in the visual gaming category with their Team ContAInment, the "AI" capitalized to represent artificial intelligence. An annual competition, the Microsoft Imagine Cup challenges participants to excel in one of nine IT-related categories and is designed to recognize students who demonstrate excellence in a diverse range of technical and artistic pursuits. According to Microsoft, entries are expected to address the competition theme to "imagine a world where technology dissolves the boundaries between us."

Out of about 2,000 participants in the world qualifying round March 15, Dowdall and Hall tied with eight others for first place, with Team ContAInment being the only U.S. team in that top group. In the national elimination round April 15, they were the top-scoring team in their division. Now, advancing to the third of four rounds, they will compete in the world semifinals May 15. The first two rounds of competition took place online, as will the third, which will narrow the playing field to six teams that will travel to Japan July 27 to compete in the world finals for a grand prize of $8,000.

As visual gaming participants, Team ContAInment had to write an algorithm to build and control a team of nanobots within the simulated human body of a terminally ill patient. The nanobots are injected into the blood stream to locate and collect infected tissue. While attempting to deliver medicine to these sites, the nanobots are attacked by white blood cells in the patient's immune system. For each round of competition, Microsoft adds another challenge, such as a virus that attacks the nanobots.

"The visual gaming challenge is actually a logistics problem that you are solving, and path planning is a big part of it," Dowdall said. "The strategy involves a collaborative multi-agent programming system of nanobots, and you must give them intelligence - the algorithm - so they know how to react in their environment."

To put it very simply, a computer program written by Team ContAInment tells the nanobots to move up, down, left or right or to follow any other variety of instructions in reaction to what they encounter in the simulated environment.

As head software developer for Associate Professor Ioannis Pavlidis' Computational Physiology Laboratory at UH, Dowdall is well prepared for this challenge. Pavlidis has gained a reputation for his work in medical imaging, bioinformatics, robotics, computational biomedicine and biometrics that have various medical applications. Being part of this research group has given Dowdall a solid background in applying computer science to medicine.

"Projects like this where students are given an opportunity to harness their imaginations often provide the type of forum where ideas are born," said John Bear, dean of the UH College of Natural Sciences and Mathematics. "It's great to see ingenuity of this caliber receiving worldwide recognition."

For a related story, see Computer Scientists at UH Developing ‘Nurturing’ Computers.

####


Contact:
Lisa Merkl
713.743.8192 (office)
713.605.1757 (pager)

Copyright © University of Houston

If you have a comment, please Contact us.

Issuers of news releases, not 7th Wave, Inc. or Nanotechnology Now, are solely responsible for the accuracy of the content.

Bookmark:
Delicious Digg Newsvine Google Yahoo Reddit Magnoliacom Furl Facebook

Related News Press

Possible Futures

Sediment dwelling creatures at risk from nanoparticles in common household products August 13th, 2015

Harris & Harris Group Reports Financial Statements as of June 30, 2015, and Announces a Stock Repurchase Program August 10th, 2015

Molecular trick alters rules of attraction for non-magnetic metals August 5th, 2015

Global Carbon Nanotubes Industry 2015: Acute Market Reports August 4th, 2015

Nanomedicine

Efficiency of Nanodrug Containing Antibiotics in Treatment of Infectious Diseases Evaluated August 31st, 2015

Researchers use DNA 'clews' to shuttle CRISPR-Cas9 gene-editing tool into cells August 30th, 2015

Iranian Scientists Use Artemisia Annua Plant to Produce Breast Cancer Drugs August 29th, 2015

Small but heading for the big time: Nanobiotix half year results for the six months ended 30 June 2015, in line with expectations: Major clinical achievements and corporate developments August 28th, 2015

Announcements

Nanotech could rid cattle of ticks, with less collateral damage September 1st, 2015

Scientists 'squeeze' light one particle at a time: A team of scientists have measured a bizarre effect in quantum physics, in which individual particles of light are said to have been 'squeezed' -- an achievement which at least one textbook had written off as hopeless September 1st, 2015

An engineered surface unsticks sticky water droplets August 31st, 2015

New material science research may advance tech tools August 31st, 2015

NanoNews-Digest
The latest news from around the world, FREE



  Premium Products
NanoNews-Custom
Only the news you want to read!
 Learn More
NanoTech-Transfer
University Technology Transfer & Patents
 Learn More
NanoStrategies
Full-service, expert consulting
 Learn More











ASP
Nanotechnology Now Featured Books




NNN

The Hunger Project







Car Brands
Buy website traffic