Saturday, 21 October 2017

Elon Musk gets OK to start digging in early step toward hyperloop dream

Elon Musk gets OK to start digging in early step toward hyperloop dream

Maryland has given transportation pioneer Elon Musk permission to dig tunnels for the high-speed, underground transit system known as a hyperloop that Musk wants to build between New York and Washington. Representatives of Maryland Gov. Larry Hogan said Thursday the state has issued a conditional utility permit to let Musk’s tunneling firm, the Boring Co., dig a 10.3-mile tunnel beneath the state-owned portion of the Baltimore-Washington Parkway, between the Baltimore city line and state Highway 175 in Hanover.

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FDA approves a game-changing treatment for blood cancer

FDA approves a game-changing treatment for blood cancer

he Food and Drug Administration on Wednesday approved a promising new treatment for a particularly deadly form of cancer, bringing hope to desperate patients while rekindling a global conversation about the escalating cost of new therapies. The treatment, made by Gilead Sciences, is made by extracting patients’ white blood cells and re-engineering them to home in on tumors. Called a CAR-T, the one-time treatment has shown unprecedented results for patients with dire diagnoses.

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An online betting strategy that really works—if you can use it

An online betting strategy that really works—if you can use it

A team of researchers found a way to make money legally from online bookies. But then their troubles began.

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Study links pollution to millions of deaths worldwide

Study links pollution to millions of deaths worldwide

Pollution is killing millions of people worldwide, mostly through the diseases it causes including heart conditions, strokes and lung cancer, according to a large international study.

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Ugh. When you die your brain KNOWS you're dead. | CBC Life

Ugh. When you die your brain KNOWS you're dead. | CBC Life

Studying the wakeful death experience.

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Kronos: The eater of planets

Kronos: The eater of planets

The Sun has been pretty good to us here on Earth over the last billion or so years. Sure we get the occasional solar storm and some deviations from ideal temperatures. But, by and large, we have a relatively supportive parent star. It’s nothing like those poor planets that orbit the star Kronos (HD 240430), located some 350 light-years away. On September 15, a team of Princeton astronomers posted a paper on the physics pre-print site arXiv.org that argues the star Kronos devoured over a dozen of its rocky inner planets during the course of its 4 billion year lifetime.

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Blue Origin just sent a jolt through the aerospace industry

Blue Origin just sent a jolt through the aerospace industry

New space company Blue Origin has spent the better part of this decade developing a powerful rocket engine for use in its orbital rocket, New Glenn, and potentially other US-based launchers. This engine, the liquid natural gas-powered BE-4, has been closely watched both within the aerospace industry and in military space because it uses innovative new technology, has largely been developed with private funding, and is fully reusable.

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Global pollution kills 9m a year and threatens 'survival of human societies'

Global pollution kills 9m a year and threatens 'survival of human societies'

Pollution kills at least nine million people and costs trillions of dollars every year, according to the most comprehensive global analysis to date, which warns the crisis “threatens the continuing survival of human societies”. Toxic air, water, soils and workplaces are responsible for the diseases that kill one in every six people around the world, the landmark report found, and the true total could be millions higher because the impact of many pollutants are poorly understood. The deaths attributed to pollution are triple those from Aids, malaria and tuberculosis combined.

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Malware in firmware can be as equally creative as it can be destructive

Malware in firmware can be as equally creative as it can be destructive

Malware in firmware can be both creative and destructive and runs before the OS loads and target components in order to modify or subvert their behavior. By Cassius Puodzius.

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10 years of the trapped rainbow: the revolution of slow light

10 years of the trapped rainbow: the revolution of slow light

The top speed of light is very fast: 299,792,458 metres per second. As it passes through transparent materials, like water or glass, it slows slightly. However, scientists think that by slowing light to a much greater degree – making it millions of times slower – they could use it in whole new ways, such as to transmit and store information or to interrogate and control single molecules.

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Friday, 20 October 2017

How Elon Musk's A.I. Destroyed The World's Best Gamers in

How Elon Musk's A.I. Destroyed The World's Best Gamers in

It happened with Chess and Go, and it finally happened with eSports this summer. Elon Musk-backed Artificial Intelligence company “OpenAI” used a bot to wallop the best DOTA2 players in the world. To be honest, it wasn’t even close. Instead of trying to program the perfect bot (a task that would have required an exhausting amount of programming due to the complicated nature of the game) OpenAI simply created a bot that learned through trial and error.

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The US government underestimated solar energy installation in the US by 4,813%

The US government underestimated solar energy installation in the US by 4,813%

The only thing certain in this life are death, taxes and the US department of energy’s massive underestimate of renewable energy capacity. Every two years, the US Energy Information Administration (EIA), America’s official source for energy statistics, issues scenarios about how much solar, wind and conventional energy the future holds for the US. Every two years, since the mid-1990s, the EIA is wrong. Last year, it was spectacularly wrong.

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Archaeology fossil teeth discovery in Germany could re-write human history

Archaeology fossil teeth discovery in Germany could re-write human history

A 9.7-million-year-old discovery has left a team of German scientists scratching their heads. The teeth seem to belong to a species only known to have appeared in Africa several million years later.

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How the Appetite for Emojis Complicates the Effort to Standardize the World’s Alphabets

How the Appetite for Emojis Complicates the Effort to Standardize the World’s Alphabets

Do the volunteers behind Unicode, whose mission is to bring all human languages into the digital sphere, have enough bandwidth to deal with emojis too?

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Dogs Attempt To Communicate With Us Through Facial Expressions

Dogs Attempt To Communicate With Us Through Facial Expressions

Our dogs really are trying to tell us something with a pout, smile or big pleading eyes, say researchers.

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Why Age? Should We End Aging Forever?

Why Age? Should We End Aging Forever?

If you could decide today... how long do you want to live?

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Solar power crushes its own record for cheapest electricity ‘ever, anywhere, by any technology’

Solar power crushes its own record for cheapest electricity ‘ever, anywhere, by any technology’

The lowest price for solar power last year is the highest price now.

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Psychologists Believe Privileged Kids Are More Likely to Develop Certain Mental Illnesses Like Depression

Psychologists Believe Privileged Kids Are More Likely to Develop Certain Mental Illnesses Like Depression

Some of us dream about having it all—the perfect house, the fancy cars, all of the money we could ever need. And then some of us don’t have to dream: these individuals, instead, do (or at least appear to) have it all. The aforementioned fortunes, the riches, the privilege. What more could they want or need? It may be hard to believe, but this life of privilege isn’t all it’s cracked up to be—at least not for affluent teens.

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Why Elon Musk's Tesla Solar Roof Is Unlike Any Previous Tech

Why Elon Musk's Tesla Solar Roof Is Unlike Any Previous Tech

Tesla wants to redefine solar panels.

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Let Sleeping Dogs Lie: It Helps Them Consolidate Memories

Let Sleeping Dogs Lie: It Helps Them Consolidate Memories

Want to teach an old dog new tricks? Try letting your pet take a nap. New research finds that dogs consolidate new memories in sleep, just like humans do. The study used electroencephalography (EEG), a technique that measures electrical activity in the brain via the scalp, to track snoozing dogs' brain activity. Similar to humans, the dogs showed short bursts of activity, called sleep spindles, during non-rapid-eye-movement sleep. Also as in humans, the frequency of these sleep spindles was linked to how well a dog retained new information it had learned before its nap.

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How Superglue Made of Human Protein Heals Wounds

How Superglue Made of Human Protein Heals Wounds

Another bit of science fiction is coming to life as scientists develop a highly elastic and adhesive surgical glue similar to the one Ryan Gosling used to seal his wound in Blade Runner 2049. Surgeons use sutures, staples, and wires (sometimes in combination with adhesive substances) to facilitate healing of external and internal wounds. These methods, however, are not optimal, especially for reconnecting contracting tissues like those of lungs, arteries and the heart.

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Thursday, 19 October 2017

September 2017: Earth's 4th Warmest September on Record

September 2017: Earth's 4th Warmest September on Record

September 2017 was the planet's fourth warmest September since record keeping began in 1880, said NOAA and NASA.

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Confession Of A Planetary Scientist: 'I Do Not Want To Live On Mars'

Confession Of A Planetary Scientist: 'I Do Not Want To Live On Mars'

I am a planetary scientist and once astronaut candidate finalist (read: space nerd). But I have something to confess: I do not want to live on Mars. While certainly interesting scientifically (e.g., seasonally-varying polar caps; transient methane plumes; permafrost), Mars is not particularly compelling as a long-term human destination.

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Don't doubt Elon Musk, says astronaut who spent a year in space

Don't doubt Elon Musk, says astronaut who spent a year in space

Elon Musk is racing to land SpaceX on Mars in five years, a vision he unveiled late last month at the 2017 International Astronautical Congress. One man not among Musk's critics is Scott Kelly, a retired astronaut who set the record in 2015 for total accumulated days in space, during the single longest mission by an American. "When Elon Musk said he was going to launch his rocket and then land the first stage on a barge, I thought he was crazy," Kelly told "Squawk Box" on Tuesday. "And then he did it. I'm not going to ever doubt what he says, ever again."

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Pennsylvania woman on her 112th b-day: 'I still like beer'

Pennsylvania woman on her 112th b-day: 'I still like beer'

Lucy Treccasse has seen it all. She was born in 1905, and now she’s celebrating her 112th birthday. Treccasse is the eighth oldest living person in America. She now lives in a nursing home in Cabot, Butler County. But she’s originally from Foxburg, and has fond memories of her childhood. Her father played golf. Her family even had a radio. They listened to the first radio broadcast on KDKA together: the election results on Nov. 2, 1920.

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How Japan's Bear-Worshipping Indigenous Group Fought Its Way to Cultural Relevance

How Japan's Bear-Worshipping Indigenous Group Fought Its Way to Cultural Relevance

For a long time, Japanese anthropologists and officials tried to bury the Ainu. It didn't work

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A Faked Study Linking Vaccines And Autism Is Being Eviscerated by Scientists

A Faked Study Linking Vaccines And Autism Is Being Eviscerated by Scientists

Controversy has erupted over a scientific paper that is being retracted after it was attacked for being 'antivax pseudoscience' and found to contain manipulated, false data… which has now gone mysteriously AWOL. The research, published last month, suggested aluminium contained in vaccine adjuvants could trigger biological responses in mice "consistent with those in autism", but it didn't take long for scientific commentators to tear the paper apart.

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Pre-sex HIV drug 'no-brainer' for NHS

Pre-sex HIV drug 'no-brainer' for NHS

A drug to dramatically cut the risk of HIV infection during sex would save the UK around £1bn over the next 80 years, say scientists. The team at University College London says Prep, or pre-exposure prophylaxis, is a "no-brainer" for the NHS. The study predicts that giving Prep to men who have sex with men would prevent one in four HIV cases.

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Smartphones Are Killing Americans, But Nobody’s Counting

Smartphones Are Killing Americans, But Nobody’s Counting

Amid a historic spike in U.S. traffic fatalities, federal data on the danger of distracted driving are getting worse.

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Dyslexia: scientists claim cause of condition may lie in the eyes

Dyslexia: scientists claim cause of condition may lie in the eyes

French scientists claim they may have found a physiological, and seemingly treatable, cause for dyslexia hidden in tiny light-receptor cells in the human eye. In people with the condition, the cells were arranged in matching patterns in both eyes, which may be to blame for confusing the brain by producing “mirror” images, the co-authors wrote in the journal Proceedings of the Royal Society B.

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Wednesday, 18 October 2017

Two officers fired after man is dragged from United flight in April

Two officers fired after man is dragged from United flight in April

Three of the Chicago law enforcement officers involved in dragging a Louisville doctor off a United Airlines’ flight in April are no longer on the job, officials revealed Tuesday. Chicago’s Inspector General Joseph Ferguson said an officer and an Aviation Security sergeant were fired, a third officer resigned and another received a five-day suspension — which was shorted to two days on appeal — for their involvement in the “violent forcible removal” of Dr. David Dao.

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How “Big Data” Went Bust

How “Big Data” Went Bust

Sometimes big data doesn’t solve problems—it magnifies them. By Will Oremus.

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Dark chocolate is now a health food. Here’s how that happened.

Dark chocolate is now a health food. Here’s how that happened.

The Mars company has sponsored hundreds of scientific studies to show cocoa is good for you.

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Survey: Most Americans No Longer Believe You Need God To Be Good

Survey: Most Americans No Longer Believe You Need God To Be Good

In 2011, only 49% of Americans believed you could be good without God. That number has since risen to 56%. More than half. That’s not insignificant. And while you’d expect the number to rise as we witness the growth of the “Nones,” these numbers also reflect the changing opinions of religious people who are having a harder time maintaining the lie that religion is what makes somebody moral.

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My sudden synaesthesia: how I went blind and started hearing colours

My sudden synaesthesia: how I went blind and started hearing colours

Vanessa Potter unexpectedly lost her sight. As she recovered, her senses mingled and hearing and touch changed the way she saw the world.

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This Is What Nuclear Weapons Leave in Their Wake

This Is What Nuclear Weapons Leave in Their Wake

A remote area of Kazakhstan was once home to nearly a quarter of the world’s nuclear testing. The impact on its inhabitants has been devastating. By Alexandra Genova, photographs by Phil Hatcher-Moore.

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Study shows how water could have flowed on 'cold and icy' ancient Mars

Study shows how water could have flowed on 'cold and icy' ancient Mars

For scientists trying to understand what ancient Mars might have been like, the red planet sends some mixed signals. Water-carved valleys and lakebeds leave little doubt that water once flowed on the surface. But climate models for early Mars suggest average temperatures around the globe stayed well below freezing.

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You can exercise yourself to death, says new study

You can exercise yourself to death, says new study

Too much exercise can kill you, scientists have revealed. White men who work out at least seven-and-a-half hours a week are nearly twice as likely to suffer from heart disease than those who do a moderate amount, a new study shows. Researchers in Chicago compared 25-year exercise patterns and made the surprising discovery that very active white men are 86 percent more likely to experience a buildup of plaque in the heart arteries by middle age.

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Trump can't save coal—even the Kentucky Coal Museum is using rooftop solar

Trump can't save coal—even the Kentucky Coal Museum is using rooftop solar

The Trump administration is repealing the Clean Power Plan and proposing to extend the life of the defunct U.S. coal industry by providing it with taxpayer-funded subsidies. The proposal is the equivalent of having offered subsidies to hay producers in order to keep buggies on the streets in 1910, when automobiles had already shown their superiority.

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Space out with planets in Google Maps

Space out with planets in Google Maps

Now you can visit many planets and moons in Google Maps right from your computer.

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Tuesday, 17 October 2017

7 of the Most Stunning Subway Stations in the World

7 of the Most Stunning Subway Stations in the World

Your morning commute doesn't have to look dreary.

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Why We Can’t Rule Out Bigfoot - Issue 53: Monsters - Nautilus

Why We Can’t Rule Out Bigfoot - Issue 53: Monsters - Nautilus

How the null hypothesis keeps the hairy hominid alive.

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Whales and dolphins have rich ‘human-like’ cultures and societies

Whales and dolphins have rich ‘human-like’ cultures and societies

Whales and dolphins (Cetaceans) live in tightly-knit social groups, have complex relationships, talk to each other and even have regional dialects – much like human societies. A major new study, published today in Nature Ecology & Evolution (Monday 16th October), has linked the complexity of Cetacean culture and behaviour to the size of their...

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How Toxic is your Car Exhaust?

How Toxic is your Car Exhaust?

Reporter Tom de Castella has a petrol-fuelled old banger, while his dad has a 2009 diesel. Each bet that the other’s car did more harm to the environment. When Tom found someone to do the test, he also discovered just how dirty some brand new cars are.

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A Nine-Year Collaboration Has Just Shown How Sugar Exacerbates Cancer

A Nine-Year Collaboration Has Just Shown How Sugar Exacerbates Cancer

There's a long-known relationship between cancer and sugar, but figuring out exactly how it works has proven elusive. Now, thanks to a nine-year research project, scientists have made a breakthrough.

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A Nine-Year Collaboration Has Just Shown How Sugar Exacerbates Cancer

A Nine-Year Collaboration Has Just Shown How Sugar Exacerbates Cancer

There's a long-known relationship between cancer and sugar, but figuring out exactly how it works has proven elusive. Now, thanks to a nine-year research project, scientists have made a breakthrough.

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Gene Therapy to Cure Blindness Gets Approval from FDA Advisers

Gene Therapy to Cure Blindness Gets Approval from FDA Advisers

On Thursday, a review panel from the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) gave their stamp approval for an experimental gene therapy to cure blindness. The treatment is for a genetically inherited blindness known as Leber Congenital Aumaurosis. Leber Congenital Aumaurosis (LCA) is a rare inherited eye disease that appears at childbirth or during the first few months of a person’s life. This eye disease was said to affect one in every 40 thousand newborns.

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Legal marijuana is saving lives in Colorado, study finds

Legal marijuana is saving lives in Colorado, study finds

Researchers say the trend is worth watching in other states.

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Tom’s Top 10 interpretations of quantum mechanics

Tom’s Top 10 interpretations of quantum mechanics

Quantum mechanics has given birth to dozens of interpretations, which themselves need interpretations.

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Monday, 16 October 2017

The Great Thaw of America’s North is Coming

The Great Thaw of America’s North is Coming

One of the most profound effects of a warming world is underway on US soil – the impact will force thousands to relocate, and have far-reaching, global consequences.

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