-- If you stumble into a diner at dawn, and your flapjacks arrive with "Good Morning" baked into the top, look for a robot called Flip-It. Developed by Ernesto Blanco, an engineering professor at Massachusetts Institute of Technology, Flip-It dispenses batter, cooks one side in an embossed fry pan, covers it with another, and turns both pans over. Flip-It is so foolproof it can be installed in cafeterias as a coin-operated system.

-- Evidence from the University of Georgia and Washington University's School of Medicine suggests that dental equipment can transmit the HIV virus. The heat-sterilization methods used in North America and Europe preclude this. But in some developing countries, dentists prefer chemical sterilization, which may not kill all the HIV bugs trapped in machine lubricants.

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