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Researchers describe how to carry out the first experimental test of string theory in a paper published tomorrow in Physical Review Letters.

String theory was originally developed to describe the fundamental particles and forces that make up our universe. The new research, led by a team from Imperial College London, describes the unexpected discovery that string theory also seems to predict the behaviour of entangled quantum particles. As this prediction can be tested in the laboratory, researchers can now test string theory.

Zeeya Merali at Nature News writes: ''Quantum hackers have performed the first 'invisible' attack on two commercial quantum cryptographic systems. By using lasers on the systems — which use quantum states of light to encrypt information for transmission — they have fully cracked their encryption keys, yet left no trace of the hack.

James Dacey at PhysicsWorld writes: ''Nanotechnology offers the promise of a new wave of sensors and optical components, but the tiny sizes involved can make it difficult for users to exchange information with these devices. Now, researchers in Spain have demonstrated a novel solution to this problem that involves fixing an "antenna" to nanoscale objects that can send and receive optical data with high precision.

R. Colin Johnson at EE Times writes: ''Piezoelectric effects translate mechanical motion into electricity and vice versa, energizing a variety of electronic transducer applications as well as promising to cut power consumption in MEMS devices. Now McGill University researchers are harnessing the piezoelectric effect in quantum dots, aiming for nanoscale sensors and power supplies that translate vibration into a usable signal.

Belle Dumé at PhysicsWorld writes: ''Physicists in Germany have used fluorescence imaging to identify individual particles in an optical lattice for the first time. The breakthrough could allow researchers to create more advanced simulations of quantum phenomena and it might help in the quest for practical quantum computing.

Olivia Meyer-Streng writes at IDW Online: ''The proton – one of the universal building-blocks of all matter – is even smaller than had previously been assumed (Nature, 8 July 2010).

Using a unique hybrid nanostructure, University of Maryland researchers have shown a new type of light-matter interaction and also demonstrated the first full quantum control of qubit spin within very tiny colloidal nanostructures (a few nanometers), thus taking a key step forward in efforts to create a quantum computer.
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Edwin Cartlidge at PhysicsWorld writes: ''Physicists in the US have carried out an extremely precise test of the one of the cornerstones of modern physics – the idea that the two types of fundamental particle, bosons and fermions, follow two distinct kinds of statistical behaviour.

According to a new Eurobarometer survey, almost 80% of Europeans are interested in science and technological developments, and just 65% claim to be interested in sports news. ''Perhaps a World Cup of science would get even more people round the TV than the football one does!'' quipped the European Commissioner for Research, Innovation and Science, Máire Geoghegan-Quinn, presenting the results of the survey. To download the full report as well as national factsheets, please visit:

Everyone working on quantum information theory has his or her favourite interpretation of quantum mechanics. Those interested in the history and philosophy of quantum mechanics will find an interesting presentation of philosophical controversies concerning quantum mechanics in the recent book "Quantum" by Manjit Kumar. Graham Farmelo, the author of “The Strangest Man,” a biography of Paul Dirac, in his review written for New York Times writes: ''[..] Manjit Kumar cites a poll about the interpretation of quantum mechanics, taken among physicists at a conference in 1999.