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Showing posts from March 4, 2017

Elon Musk: tech dreamer reaching for sun, moon and stars

Sending tourists for a trip around the moon is the latest big idea launched by Elon Musk, a Silicon Valley star known for turning his passions into visionary enterprises. Musk has become one of the United States' best-known innovators.


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Jeff Bezos Wants to Bring Amazon Prime-Like Delivery to the Moon

The Amazon and Blue Origin bossman is looking to set up regular lunar deliveries of supplies ahead of human settlement. 


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China premier pledges: 'We will make our skies blue again'

BEIJING (AP) — Chinese Premier Li Keqiang pledged Sunday to make the country's smoggy skies blue again and "work faster" to address pollution caused by the burning of coal for heat and electricity.


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China vows blue skies despite economic challenges

China will work to clear its skies by increasing investment in clean energy and punishing polluters, Premier Li Keqiang said Sunday in comments aimed at mollifying public anger over chronic smog. Swathes of northern China were blanketed under toxic smog this winter, affecting more than 100 million people and forcing government agencies to take emergency measures to curb pollution. "Environmental pollution remains grave, and in particular, some areas are frequently hit by smog," Li told delegates to the rubber-stamp National People's Congress (NPC) in opening its annual session.


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Carmakers rev up emissions cuts as tough rules loom

Global carmakers, stung by emissions scandals, are racing to hunt down every gram of harmful CO2 spewed out on the roads as tougher pollution rules kick in. Auto manufacturers gearing up for Europe's biggest annual car show in Geneva are celebrating the end of the sector's crisis.


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Why choose to go to the moon? Trump changes commercial space calculations

Nearly 55 years ago, President John F. Kennedy said America chose to go to the moon and take on other challenges “not because they are easy, but because they are hard.” Now it’s commercial space ventures that are choosing to go to the moon. Back in the 1960s, the moon effort was aimed at demonstrating America’s greatness. A similar motivation is at work this time around: to demonstrate that President Donald Trump is making America great again. Trump has given nods to the space effort in his two big speeches: In his inauguration address, he said America was “ready to… Read More


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NASA Mars satellite shifts course to avoid hitting planet's moon

By Irene Klotz CAPE CANAVERAL, Fla. (Reuters) - A NASA science satellite orbiting Mars was forced to make a rare evasive manoeuvre to avoid a collision next week with one of the planet's two small moons, the U.S. space agency said on Thursday. Flight controllers at NASA's Jet Propulsion Laboratory in Pasadena, California, commanded the MAVEN spacecraft, which is studying Mars' vanishing atmosphere, to fire up its engine on Tuesday to boost its speed by about 1.3 feet per second (0.4 meters per second). The acceleration was necessary to slightly shift MAVEN's orbit and steer the satellite clear of the Martian moon Phobos, the National Aeronautics and Space Administration said in a statement.


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Not-so-hidden figures: Lego confirms development of ‘Women of NASA’ minifigures

"Women of NASA" may be the next big hit in the minifig world if writer Maia Weinstock and her 10,000 supporters have their way. The minifig set reached the 10,000-vote mark on the Lego Ideas website and will now be developed.


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NASA Mars satellite shifts course to avoid hitting planet's moon

By Irene Klotz CAPE CANAVERAL, Fla. (Reuters) - A NASA science satellite orbiting Mars was forced to make a rare evasive maneuver to avoid a collision next week with one of the planet's two small moons, the U.S. space agency said on Thursday. Flight controllers at NASA's Jet Propulsion Laboratory in Pasadena, California, commanded the MAVEN spacecraft, which is studying Mars' vanishing atmosphere, to fire up its engine on Tuesday to boost its speed by about 1.3 feet per second (0.4 meters per second). The acceleration was necessary to slightly shift MAVEN's orbit and steer the satellite clear of the Martian moon Phobos, the National Aeronautics and Space Administration said in a statement.


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A best-selling author reveals what it was like to contract a flesh-eating disease exploring an ancient 'lost city'

As the sun set over his campsite one evening, author Douglas Preston silently congratulated...


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There’s a reason you’ve probably never seen an elephant sleeping

If you catch any elephants napping on your next African safari, be careful not to wake them up. Humans tend to get cranky…


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Blood test to read body clock could usher in a new era of 'time therapy'

A new era of 'time therapy' may be on the horizon after scientists discovered how to read the hands on an individual's body clock. 


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Artificial 'embryos' created in the lab

Stem cells have been used to create a structure closely resembling a natural mouse embryo.


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Key Large Hadron Collider Experiment Gets A New ‘Heart’

Engineers at the European Organization for Nuclear Research have successfully installed a new "pixel tracker" in the CMS detector, increasing the odds of discovering signs of "new physics."


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Evidence-Based Investing? Take that Alpha and Shove It.

Prof. Harvey is rightly concerned that the incentives to publish “strong significant results” are super high in finance and economics and this is skewing our true understanding of reality.  In short, Campbell has the intellectual fortitude to state plainly what many of us have known — or indirectly sensed — data-mining is probably rampant in financial economics.


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The Devastating Way Woolly Mammoths Went Extinct

Evolution: Examining why woolly mammoths went extinct holds lessons for protecting endangered species today. Can we bring mammoths back?


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Woolly mammoths suffered genetic 'meltdown' before extinction

Before woolly mammoths went extinct thousands of years ago, their dwindling population suffered a series of genetic mutations that hampered their ability to survive, researchers said Thursday. Woolly mammoths were once among the most common herbivores in North America and Siberia, but came under threat from increased hunting pressure and a warming climate. Experts analyzed the genome of one of the last known woolly mammoths ever found -- a 4,300-year-old specimen from Wrangel Island, off the northern coast of Siberia.


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Saturn Transit In Sagittarius: Insights About Retrograde Saturn and Saturn-Jupiter-Ketu Conjunction

Saturn Transit In Sagittarius will be one of the most crucial transits in the coming years. This transit will collide with Jupiter Transit In Sagittarius and Ketu Transit In Sagittarius and will thus have a huge say in various matters.


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World's Oldest Fossils Possibly Uncovered in Canada

Ancient traces of microbial life that are between 3.77 billion and 4.29 billion years old might have been unearthed in a rocky outcropping in Canada, a new study suggests. If the new microfossils truly are evidence of primordial life that once sprang up in ancient hydrothermal vents, it suggests that life began on Earth soon after the planet coalesced, the study authors said. "We can say life managed to emerge on Earth very rapidly almost soon after the oceans had condensed on the surface of the Earth 4.4 billion years ago," said study lead author Matthew Dodd, a biogeochemistry graduate student at the University College London.


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100 Years of Women in Politics: How They've Served

One-hundred years ago today, on March 4, 1917, Rep. Jeannette Rankin, R-Mt., became the first woman to serve in the U.S. Congress. "I may be the first woman member of Congress," she said following her election in 1916, according to the History, Art & Archives of the U.S. House of Representatives. Rankin's prediction came true: She certainly wasn't the last woman to serve in Congress.


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Vodafone Idea Merger: Ganesha Foresees Positive Events And A Major Reshuffle In Management

Ever since the news of the possibilities of a merger between Vodafone India and Idea Cellular – the Aditya Birla Group’s telecom venture made it to the news, there has been a lot of curiosity amongst the masses and the investors. It has also being reported that Vodafone is roping in the former Vodafone India MD Martin Pieters to lead the India unit. Ganesha notes that Aries happens to be the First House in the Surya Kundli of Vodafone and exalted Sun along with Mercury are placed therein.


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With its Moon announcement, did SpaceX kick off the first public-private space race?

SpaceX shocked the spaceflight community yesterday by announcing a new ambitious goal for 2018: sending two people around the Moon. If SpaceX pulls this mission off, it will be the first private company to take civilians beyond lower Earth orbit. The mission also mimics a possible NASA plan.


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Hundreds of previously undiscovered ancient oak trees found in English countryside

The mighty oak has been central to English history and culture for centuries. A nationwide survey has just revealed that England has more ancient oak trees than the rest of Europe put together. Over the past four years, tree historians have discovered 1,200 previously unknown but still surviving mediaeval and Tudor oaks, pushing the grand total for such trees in England to a remarkable 3,400.


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Has this photo of strawberries given us another crisis like “The Dress”?

We hope you’re prepared, because it looks like we’ve got another dress situation on our hands. Twitter is going crazy over this photo…


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Another satellite launch for Europe's Earth monitoring system

Europe is set to launch a fourth satellite next Tuesday for its ambitious Copernicus Earth monitoring project to track changing land cover and pollution, launch firm Arianespace said. Dubbed Sentinel-2B, the satellite will blast off on a Vega rocket from Europe's space port in Kourou, French Guiana, at 0149 GMT, the company said. "The Sentinel-SB Earth observation satellite primarily focuses on monitoring land masses and coastal zones around the world," Arianespace said in a statement.


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Scientists Build New Computer Made of DNA

The computer can copy itself many times over, making calculations much faster.


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Check Out An Interactive Map Of Every Dinosaur Fossil Found On Earth

The map lets you search by period, taxonomy and strata


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Why choose to go to the moon? Trump changes commercial space calculations

Nearly 55 years ago, President John F. Kennedy said America chose to go to the moon and take on other challenges “not because they are easy, but because they are hard.” Now it’s commercial space ventures that are choosing to go to the moon. Back in the 1960s, the moon effort was aimed at demonstrating America’s greatness. A similar motivation is at work this time around: to demonstrate that President Donald Trump is making America great again. Trump has given nods to the space effort in his two big speeches: In his inauguration address, he said America was “ready to… Read More


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Researchers retrieve short film and a full operating system from strands of DNA

A team of researchers from Colombia University have stored a computer operating system and short film on DNA, using an algorithm that streams videos on cellphones to compress the information even further.


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US police agencies with their own DNA databases stir debate

LOS ANGELES (AP) — Dozens of police departments around the U.S. are amassing their own DNA databases to track criminals, a move critics say is a way around regulations governing state and national databases that restrict who can provide genetic samples and how long that information is held.


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Mass Effect: Andromeda features over 100 planets, but only ‘a handful’ can be explored

As Mass Effect: Andromeda nears its March 21 release date, developer BioWare has been releasing a series of videos detailing different aspects of the game. This week’s video is all about exploration, which seems to be a bigger focus in Andromeda than any previous Mass Effect game. The video notes that there are over 100 planets (and other strange space anomalies) to discover in Andromeda’s Helius cluster.


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After 44 days, hearings end for giant telescope in Hawaii

HONOLULU (AP) — Long-running hearings for whether a giant telescope can be built atop a Hawaii mountain have wrapped up. But it will be a while before a decision is made on a project that has prompted intense protests by those who believe it will desecrate sacred land.


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South Africa in talks with Airbus, Boeing to print 3D parts

By Wendell Roelf JOHANNESBURG (Reuters) - South African researchers developing the world’s largest machine for producing aircraft parts using lasers to melt powdered titanium are in talks with Airbus and Boeing, with the first commercial application expected in 2019. Officially launched in 2011 and backed by government, the Aeroswift research project last year produced its first three demonstrator parts – a pilot’s throttle lever, a condition lever grip which is part of the throttle assembly, and a fuel tank pylon bracket, in a digital process known as 3D printing, or additive layer manufacturing. Increasingly adopted by the automotive, aerospace and military industries as a cheaper way of making complex parts, the new manufacturing process could save millions of dollars on fuel and production costs as aircraft makers replace aluminum bodies with lighter materials such as titanium alloys.


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Lego's New "Women of NASA" Set Has Parents Everywhere Cheering

Get ready to snap these up for your kids and grandkids.


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'Gateway to the underworld' crater in remote Siberia keeps expanding as permafrost melts

In a remote region of Siberia, near the Yana river basin, a crater locally known as the "doorway to the underworld" continues to expand. Its real name is the Batagaika crater and it is a "megaslump" - a giant crater, reaching a size of 1km long and 86 metres deep. Megaslumps have been associated with the region's melting permafrost — frozen ground that had been below zero centigrade for two or more years continuously, and which covers much of the region.


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An Ice-Age Squirrel Found by Gulag Prisoners Gets Its Scientific Due

I’ve never read a scientific paper that so thoroughly gripped me in the first paragraph, so I will let the authors of a new paper from the journal Scientific Reports speak for themselves.


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Elephant All-Nighters? Giant Beasts Sleep Only 2 Hours

A sample size of two is small, but if the two matriarchs are representative of their species, African elephants may be the shortest-sleeping mammals on Earth, the researchers said. "Elephants really don't sleep all that much, and this appears to be related to their large size," said study lead researcher Paul Manger, a professor in the School of Anatomical Sciences at the University of the Witwatersrand in South Africa. Previous studies have described elephant sleep, but many of those studies have flaws — either using captive elephants, which have different sleep schedules than wild elephants, or failing to consistently distinguish between rest and sleep, Manger said.


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There's not a single red pixel in this photo of strawberries

If you're in the mood to trick your brain, we've got just the thing for you. Akiyoshi Kitaoka is a psychology professor at Ritsumeikan University in Japan. One look at his Twitter, and it's pretty obvious he has an affinity for making and sharing optical illusions. One illusion in particular involving a picture of strawberries has recently become a viral sensation, and we are berry confused by it. SEE ALSO: People can't believe a supermarket is selling a single boxed strawberry for $22 How exactly are these strawberries an optical illusion? No red pixels are in this photo. 2色法によるイチゴの錯視。この画像はすべてシアン色(青緑色)の画素でできているが、イチゴは赤く見える。Strawberries appear to be reddish, though the pixels are not. http://pic.twitter.com/Ginyhf61F7 — Akiyoshi Kitaoka (@AkiyoshiKitaoka) February 28, 2017 They look red! How can that be? It turns out our brains are the ones to blame. Our brains have been trained to color correct what we see so that objects remain a consistent color regardless of the lig…

My Foundations: Spanish Architect Santiago Calatrava shares his inspirations

Spanish architect, structural engineer and artist Santiago Calatrava, 65, is renowned for his sculptural buildings and bridges around the world. Today he also has offices in New York and Doha. Some of his most famous creations include the Turning Torso in Malmö, the Museum of Tomorrow in Rio de Janiero Valencia's City of Arts and Sciences and Opera House.


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Was the Oscars mix-up a ‘glitch’ which proves we are living in The Matrix?

Could it all be a ‘glitch in the Matrix’ – proof that we’re all living inside a computer simulation, run by people far more advanced than ourselves? The idea that we might be living in the Matrix has gained serious traction over the past couple of years. Several tech billionaires are so convinced that we’re living inside the Matrix that they are actually funding research to help us escape the simulation, according to the New Yorker.


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The Devastating Way Woolly Mammoths Went Extinct

Evolution: Examining why woolly mammoths went extinct holds lessons for protecting endangered species today. Can we bring mammoths back?


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Gene therapy relieves sickle cell in world first: study

Scientists have used gene therapy to relieve the symptoms of a teenager suffering from sickle cell disease (SCD) in a world-first breakthrough, they reported on Thursday. SCD is an inherited disease caused by a gene mutation that results in red blood cells losing their usual donut-like appearance and taking on a sickle or crescent moon shape. Many need chronic blood transfusions.


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Woolly mammoths suffered genetic 'meltdown' before extinction

Before woolly mammoths went extinct thousands of years ago, their dwindling population suffered a series of genetic mutations that hampered their ability to survive, researchers said Thursday. Woolly mammoths were once among the most common herbivores in North America and Siberia, but came under threat from increased hunting pressure and a warming climate. Experts analyzed the genome of one of the last known woolly mammoths ever found -- a 4,300-year-old specimen from Wrangel Island, off the northern coast of Siberia.


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US and Canadian scientists to study cross-border flooding

MONTPELIER, Vt. (AP) — U.S. and Canadian scientists are planning to spend the next five years studying flooding on Lake Champlain and the Richelieu River, which drains the lake north into Quebec, and whether methods can be developed to control future flooding.


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Check Out An Interactive Map Of Every Dinosaur Fossil Found On Earth

The map lets you search by period, taxonomy and strata


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NASA Mars satellite shifts course to avoid hitting planet's moon

By Irene Klotz CAPE CANAVERAL, Fla. (Reuters) - A NASA science satellite orbiting Mars was forced to make a rare evasive manoeuvre to avoid a collision next week with one of the planet's two small moons, the U.S. space agency said on Thursday. Flight controllers at NASA's Jet Propulsion Laboratory in Pasadena, California, commanded the MAVEN spacecraft, which is studying Mars' vanishing atmosphere, to fire up its engine on Tuesday to boost its speed by about 1.3 feet per second (0.4 meters per second). The acceleration was necessary to slightly shift MAVEN's orbit and steer the satellite clear of the Martian moon Phobos, the National Aeronautics and Space Administration said in a statement.


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