Best alcohol news since beer was invented

One of the cleanest burning fuels we have is ethanol. But how to make it in large quantities? Currently most biofuel requires a costly two-step process. For example, corn is turned into glucose, which in turn must be fermented into alcohol. Like distilling a liquor to fuel your car.

Research at the University of Rochester promises to remove one step from bio waste to ethanol. The tiny hero of this story is a bacterium named C. thermocellum. It has the ability to take woods chips or grass clippings and digest them, producing ethanol directly.

Now Rochester's research is focusing on how to get these little guys to use their triggering genes to produce more of the potent enzymes that enable the grass-to-ethanol process, and then make it happen faster. When all that Ikea furniture gets tiresome, just feed it to thermocellum, then pump it into your car.

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Roku 4: Our favorite TV streaming system gets 4K video and a remote locator

Ever lose your remote in the couch cushions? Ever wish you could stream 4K Netflix without having to use your TV's built-in app? Roku's new high-end player, the $129 Roku 4, brings these new extras to its best-in-class streaming ecosystem.

by David Katzmaier