Memory Could Serve You Wrong

A paper just published in PNAS took a look at how our memories are reconsolidated after their retrieval. Once touched, a memory is no longer exactly the same. In showing just how easy it is to change certain kinds of memories, the authors not only raise new concerns for eyewitness testimony in the courtroom, but may explain in part why such testimony often tends to accumulate doubt in the face of continued questioning. In six experiments, researchers show that reconsolidation-associated amnesia can be achieved 48 hours after formation of the original memory, but only if relearning occurred soon after retrieval. The results demonstrate that human declarative memory can be selectively rewritten during reconsolidation. To learn more, click here.

4D Printed Materials are on the Way

Researchers at MIT are working on so-called “4D printing” technology that aims to bring the process up to the macro scale, enabling 3D-printed materials to be programmed to self-assemble into predefined shapes and structures. The 4D printing process (with the assembly over time) involves the use of materials that changes their shape in response to movement or environmental factors, such as the presence of water, air, and/or temperature changes.  This is thought to be the first time that a program of transformation has been embedded directly into a material itself.  The Self-Assembly Lab believes the technology has the potential to revolutionize a wide variety of fields, including “biology, material science, software, robotics, manufacturing, transportation, infrastructure, construction, the arts, and even space exploration.” To learn more, click here.

Introduction to the U.S. Legal System

The Center for Legal & Court Technology has introduced a new professional education development certificate program in a blended-learning format:  Introduction to the US Legal System. This program, designed for congressional and state legislative staffers, legal system professionals, legal technology company staff, journalists, and anyone else interested in understanding more about American Law and our legal system. The complete course consists of a 3-day on campus component, distance learning Part One (Law and the Legal System) and Part Two (Litigation and Substantive Law), along with an option National Center for State Courts (NCSC) Rule of Law Programming. Click here to learn more and register!


Introduction to the U.S. Legal System provides a compact and in-depth opportunity for non-lawyers to develop savvy in dealing with the legal community and legal issues. The legal system can seem to operate by an arcane set of rules and principles. this course provides the toolbox to decode what’s really going on and deal effectively with lawyers and the legal systems. It’s especially suited for those who offer products and services that can be useful to those in the legal system or n0n-lawyers who regularly work with lawyers, judges or the judicial systems.”

Mark Chandler, Cisco