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Science and Technology

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Vanderbilt University

Researchers at Vanderbilt University may have found the next generation of technology to protect against identity theft. The key, they think, is in a tiny spiral, about one-hundredth the size of a single piece of hair, that could be embedded on credit cards or currency to prevent counterfeit.

Emily Siner / WPLN

In an announcement with much fanfare but not many details, AT&T said this morning it’s rolling out gigabit-speed internet to some Nashville-area customers starting Monday.

The announcement at the AT&T building downtown featured a brass quartet heralding visitors. The mayor attended, as did country music artist Drake White, who played a sendoff song. AT&T Tennessee President Joelle Phillips beamed as she spoke about the new service.

City of Tullahoma

One of the things the city of Tullahoma is proud of is its waste collection.

Yes, you read that correctly.

The Middle Tennessee town touts its recycling program, which accounts for about a third of its waste. Now it’s adding another way to get rid of trash sustainably: composting. 

Annie Clements, a longtime Tullahoma resident, already sets aside organic waste like food scraps and plant trimmings to decompose, the process known as composting.

Emily Siner / WPLN

To write a great country song, they say, you need three chords and the truth. These days, you may also need a few self-produced albums, a dozen social media accounts and several thousand online fans before you can get anyone to listen to it. 

In a music industry revolutionized by the Internet, aspiring artists are trying to balance their work as musicians with the increasing demands of social media.

Entrepreneur Center


Nashville’s Entrepreneur Center, a nonprofit that acts as the city's technology hub, has picked a venture capitalist with strong ties to the healthcare industry as its new CEO.

Stuart McWhorter is co-founder of a Brentwood investment firm, Clayton Associates, that works with early-stage companies. The firm runs an investment fund which operates in the Entrepreneur Center. 

McWhorter — who also founded OrthoLink, a management company for orthopedic doctors — acknowledges that healthcare is a cornerstone of the technology industry in Nashville.


Living on the International Space Station is a sort of experiment for mankind, and the astronauts aboard are the test subjects. 

The biggest surprise for astronaut Barry "Butch" Wilmore? The mental gymnastics of working in zero-gravity.

“You think you'll adjust quickly, and physically, I adjusted fine," he said. "But, I mean, you lose stuff. Things float away. You have to think about every single thing that you're doing at every moment, because what you're doing can have dramatic consequences if you don’t do it right.”

Vanderbilt University

A recent award for scientific research at Vanderbilt University was given to someone who doesn’t even go there.

Hillsboro High School senior Alex Jolly was named a national semifinalist in the Intel Science Talent Search for his work in a Vanderbilt chemistry lab. He worked with professor Brian Bachmann, whose lab is in the business of drug discovery.

Emily Siner / WPLN

A frosty relationship between the organizers of two upcoming technology conferences in Nashville has resulted in another out-of-court settlement. 

The dispute began after San Francisco tech publication Pando Daily threatened legal action against Launch Tennessee, an agency partly funded by the state that invests in startups.


Tennessee astronaut Barry "Butch" Wilmore spent more than six hours Wednesday working outside the International Space Station. Wilmore, who’s been aboard for about six months, was helping prepare the station for the arrival of private space taxis. 


Updated March 12: Butch Wilmore returned to Earth yesterday from the International Space Station, landing in remote Kazakhstan. He has spent a total of 178 days in space.

Meet Barry “Butch” Wilmore, your friendly local astronaut.

Wilmore grew up in Mt. Juliet and went to Tennessee Tech University and the University of Tennessee. Then he enlisted in the Navy, became a pilot and then — an astronaut.