Thursday, 21 September 2017

Why Poison Frogs Don’t Poison Themselves

Why Poison Frogs Don’t Poison Themselves

The answer provide clues for developing better drugs to fight pain and addiction

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Experts find 60 preserved ancient shipwrecks at the bottom of the Black Sea

Experts find 60 preserved ancient shipwrecks at the bottom of the Black Sea

Dozens of perfectly preserved ancient shipwrecks have been found at the bottom of the Black Sea. A total of 60 wrecks were discovered dating back as far as 2,500 years, including galleys from the Roman, Byzantine and Ottoman empires.

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Getting emotional after failure helps you improve next time, study finds

Getting emotional after failure helps you improve next time, study finds

Perhaps it is best to beat yourself up a little the next time you fail at a task. New research led by a University of Kansas marketing professor has found emotional responses to failure rather than cognitive ones are more effective at improving people's results for the next time they tackle the next related task.

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Evolution Isn’t Always Slow. Sometimes It Happens Overnight

Evolution Isn’t Always Slow. Sometimes It Happens Overnight

There are still people out there who don't believe in evolution, and frankly, we don't want to start that argument. Instead, we'd prefer to just point to those moments when natural selection made itself suddenly, dramatically known.

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Ex-Patriots star Aaron Hernandez had CTE, examiners conclude

Ex-Patriots star Aaron Hernandez had CTE, examiners conclude

Researchers at Boston University found Hernandez, whose April death was ruled a suicide, had Stage 3 CTE, with Stage 4 being the most severe.

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To save the planet, scientists figured out how to fix cow farts

To save the planet, scientists figured out how to fix cow farts

The secret to climate-friendly cattle.

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Plastic-degrading fungus found in Pakistan trash dump

Plastic-degrading fungus found in Pakistan trash dump

Scientists found the fungus Aspergillus tubingensis breaking down plastic in a rubbish dump in Islamabad, Pakistan.

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Scientists just discovered the first brainless animal that sleeps

Scientists just discovered the first brainless animal that sleeps

The research could reveal where sleep came from and why we must spend so much time doing it.

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A Brain Built From Atomic Switches Can Learn

A Brain Built From Atomic Switches Can Learn

A tiny self-organized mesh full of artificial synapses recalls its experiences and can solve simple problems. Its inventors hope it points the way to devices that match the brain’s energy-efficient computing prowess.

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Summer in the Heartsick Mountains

Summer in the Heartsick Mountains

On a nearly moonless night in late May, as I stumbled down a wide, smooth path near a large campground in the Great Smoky Mountains National Park, it suddenly occurred to me that I can’t see in the dark anymore... By Ellie Shechet.

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Astronomers discover extremely hot, pitch-black exoplanet

Astronomers discover extremely hot, pitch-black exoplanet

Using the Hubble Space Telescope, astronomers have discovered a most unusual exoplanet that absorbs 94% of the visible light given off by its host star, making it seem as if it is pitch-black in color, according to research published last week in the Astrophysical Journal Letters. This unusual world, officially known as WASP-12b, is a “hot Jupiter” – a giant gas planet which orbits very closely to its sun and which is heated to extreme temperatures – NASA explained in a statement. In this case, its day side reaches temperatures of up to 4,600 degrees Fahrenheit.

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Researchers find secret, warm oasis beneath Antarctica’s ice that could be home to undiscovered species

Researchers find secret, warm oasis beneath Antarctica’s ice that could be home to undiscovered species

A study of the subglacial caves could reveal new undiscovered animal or plant species living comfortably due to the heat of an active volcano. By Victor Ferreira.

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Tropical Depressions

Tropical Depressions

Climate change means, quite plausibly, the end of everything we now understand to constitute our humanity. By Sam Kriss, Ellie Mae O’Hagan.

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Understanding the brain using topology: the Blue Brain project

Understanding the brain using topology: the Blue Brain project

Alert! Alert! Applied topology has taken the world has by storm once more. This time techniques from algebraic topology are being applied to model networks of neurons in the brain... By Rachael Jane Boyd.

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Five ways technology can read your mind – and what it’s good for

Five ways technology can read your mind – and what it’s good for

Order a coffee, type an email or learn a new instrument faster. Mind-reading tech is now so advanced that all this and more is within reach with thought alone. By Julia Brown.

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Wednesday, 20 September 2017

Lightning storms triggered by exhaust from cargo ships

Lightning storms triggered by exhaust from cargo ships

The world's busiest shipping lanes have twice as many bolts of lightning as nearby areas, and ships pumping soot into the air seem to be responsible. By Lakshmi Supriya.

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The Mysterious Origins of the Phrase ‘Liar, Liar, Pants on Fire’

The Mysterious Origins of the Phrase ‘Liar, Liar, Pants on Fire’

A common phrase with a long, deceptive history.

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The Brain-Machine Interface Isn't Sci-Fi Anymore

The Brain-Machine Interface Isn't Sci-Fi Anymore

This startup lets you control machines with your mind—no implants required. By Steven Levy.

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Inside the Strange Science of the Fake Meat That 'Bleeds'

Inside the Strange Science of the Fake Meat That 'Bleeds'

Join WIRED for the deepest dive yet into the science of the Impossible Burger, the genetically engineered fake meat on a mission to upend the beef industry.

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German WWI submarine discovered off Belgian coast

German WWI submarine discovered off Belgian coast

Authorities in Flanders called it the "best preserved" find from the era. The bodies of all 23 crew members were found aboard the vessel, in a watery grave on the floor of the North Sea. Belgian authorities announced on Tuesday that they had discovered the remarkably well-preserved wreck of a World War I German submarine, commonly called a U-boat, off the coast of West Flanders.

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Finnish Scientists Push for 50 Nano-Spacecraft to Explore 300 Asteroids

Finnish Scientists Push for 50 Nano-Spacecraft to Explore 300 Asteroids

A fleet of small spacecraft propelled by electric solar wind sails (E-sails) could catalogue nearby asteroids like never before.

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Consciousness Goes Deeper Than You Think

Consciousness Goes Deeper Than You Think

An article on the neuroscience of infant consciousness, which attracted some interest a few years ago, asked: “When does your baby become conscious?” The premise, of course, was that babies aren’t born conscious but, instead, develop consciousness at some point. (According to the article, it is about five months of age). Yet, it is hard to think that there is nothing it feels like to be a newborn.

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Researchers have linked a human brain to the Internet for the first time ever.

Researchers have linked a human brain to the Internet for the first time ever.

A team of researchers at Wits University in Johannesburg, South Africa have made a major breakthrough in the field of biomedical engineering. According to a release published on Medical Express, for the first time ever, researchers have devised a way of connecting the human brain to the internet in real time. It’s been dubbed the “Brainternet” project, and it essentially turns the brain “…into an Internet of Things (IoT) node on the World Wide Web.” Future developments could allow for data transfer in both directions.

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Soft robotics: self-contained soft actuator three times stronger than natural muscle, without the need of externals

Soft robotics: self-contained soft actuator three times stronger than natural muscle, without the need of externals

Researchers at Columbia Engineering have solved a long-standing issue in the creation of untethered soft robots whose actions and movements can help mimic natural biological systems. A group in the Creative Machines lab led by Hod Lipson, professor of mechanical engineering, has developed a 3D-printable synthetic soft muscle, a one-of-a-kind artificial active tissue with intrinsic expansion ability that does not require an external compressor or high voltage equipment as previous muscles required.

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How Big Oil Conquered the World

How Big Oil Conquered the World

The story of oil is the story of those who helped shape the modern world, and how the oil-igarchy they created is on the verge of monopolizing life itself.

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Reliance on ‘gut feelings’ linked to belief in fake news, study finds

Reliance on ‘gut feelings’ linked to belief in fake news, study finds

People who tend to trust their intuition or to believe that the facts they hear are politically biased are more likely to stand behind inaccurate beliefs, a new study suggests. And those who rely on concrete evidence to form their beliefs are less likely to have misperceptions about high-profile scientific and political issues, said Kelly Garrett, the lead researcher and a professor of communication at The Ohio State University.

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Life On Earth Could Have Started With Molecules From The Sun

Life On Earth Could Have Started With Molecules From The Sun

The Trump administration rejected a study from the Department of Health and Human Services showing refugees brought in $63 million than they cost for the government over the past decade. The New York Times reported Monday night the draft report showed refugees are not as costly as the administration often argues. Some within the administration didn't want the report to surface because it would go against the justification for President Trump possibly lowering the number of refugees admitted to the country next year, which he must announce by Oct. 1.

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Teens aren't grasping 'the responsibilities of adulthood,' new study says

Teens aren't grasping 'the responsibilities of adulthood,' new study says

Today’s teens are on a slow road to adulthood, putting off risky behaviors from drinking to sex, but also delaying jobs, driving, dating and other steps towards independence, according to 40 years of data.

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Do Microbes Trigger Alzheimer’s Disease?

Do Microbes Trigger Alzheimer’s Disease?

The once fringe idea is gaining traction among the scientific community. By Jill U. Adams. (Sept. 1, 2017)

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Tuesday, 19 September 2017

Insight Astronomy Photographer of the Year 2017 winners – in pictures

Insight Astronomy Photographer of the Year 2017 winners – in pictures

Awe-inspiring views of the universe were celebrated at the Insight Astronomy Photographer of the Year 2017 awards ceremony, held at the Royal Greenwich Observatory.

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Surface to Unlimited: A Visit to Spaceport America

Surface to Unlimited: A Visit to Spaceport America

Truth or Consequences, New Mexico, has long depended on tourism. Now spaceflight has been folded into its mythos, at the dawn of the Second Space Age. By Jack Murphy.

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Space Photos of the Week: So Long, Cassini. Thanks for All the Pics

Space Photos of the Week: So Long, Cassini. Thanks for All the Pics

This week, all eyes are on Saturn and, more specifically, the Cassini spacecraft which circled the planet one last time before crashing into its murky surface on Friday. It left behind thousands of images, including some final shots like the photo of Saturn's clouds near the terminator, which is the boundary between night and day. It also took the awkwardly named "goodbye-kiss" image of Titan. The moon's gravity gave Cassini one final push around Saturn before its dramatic end.

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Researchers find the key to loss of smell with Parkinson's disease.

Researchers find the key to loss of smell with Parkinson's disease.

Parkinson's disease is a progressive, degenerative disorder of the brain. Symptoms include tremors, stiffness or rigidity, and slowness of movement. According to Parkinson's New Zealand, approximately 1 percent of people over the age of 60 have the condition. There is no cure so treatment will normally focus on managing symptoms, typically with medication. Loss of the sense of smell is an often overlooked but remarkably prevalent early symptom of Parkinson's disease.

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Deutsche Bank CEO gets brutally honest about what automation is going to do to banking jobs

Deutsche Bank CEO gets brutally honest about what automation is going to do to banking jobs

Technology threatens jobs in many industries, but one bank chief is already predicting that "a lot of people" in his industry will see their roles taken by automation in the next five to 10 years. Deutsche Bank CEO John Cryan has made headlines before for his prediction that technology will end many banking jobs, but he offered more insight into exactly how the financial world will change in an interview with CNBC on the sidelines of the Singapore Summit.

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Scientists Can Now Repaint Butterfly Wings

Scientists Can Now Repaint Butterfly Wings

Thanks to CRISPR, scientists are studying animal evolution in ways that were previously thought to be impossible. By Ed Yong.

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Is Tribalism a Natural Malfunction?

Is Tribalism a Natural Malfunction?

What computers teach us about getting along. By Simon Dedeo.

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Lithium in tap water seems to both raise and lower dementia risk.

Lithium in tap water seems to both raise and lower dementia risk.

A study has found that high levels of lithium in drinking water is linked to a lower dementia risk, but medium levels are linked to a raised risk.

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Case study of LAPD and Palantir’s predictive policing tool

Case study of LAPD and Palantir’s predictive policing tool

Same corruption; new, empirical respectability. By Cory Doctorow.

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Light Has Been Stored as Sound For The First Time

Light Has Been Stored as Sound For The First Time

For the first time ever, scientists have stored light-based information as sound waves on a computer chip - something the researchers compare to capturing lightning as thunder.

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Stockley not guilty verdict not a surprise based on history, or for legal experts

Stockley not guilty verdict not a surprise based on history, or for legal experts

Successful prosecution in a police shooting is rare due to the legal standard that must be overcome. By Joel Currier and Robert Patrick.

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If You Feel Everyone Around You Has More Friends, You're Probably Wrong

If You Feel Everyone Around You Has More Friends, You're Probably Wrong

Only recently did I work up the nerve to go to a diner or coffee shop alone. Even now, when I do, I'll sit there hunched over my sandwich or cup of tea and cast furtive glances at all the twosomes around me, knowing exactly what they're thinking: What. A. Loser. She can't even find someone to keep her company for half an hour?

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Monday, 18 September 2017

Tectonic plates 'weaker than previously thought', say scientists

Tectonic plates 'weaker than previously thought', say scientists

The finding explains an ambiguity in lab work that led scientists to believe these rocks were much stronger than they appeared to be in the natural world. This new knowledge will help us understand how tectonic plates can break to form new boundaries. Study co-author Lars Hansen, Associate Professor of Rock and Mineral Physics in Oxford University's Department of Earth Sciences, said: 'The strength of tectonic plates has been a major target of research for the past four decades.

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We have a new word for that feeling when travel makes everything new

We have a new word for that feeling when travel makes everything new

On a double-decker bus from Dublin airport to Drumcondra early one June morning, a young lad stretched out on the back seat and started to rap. What he lacked in talent he made up for in gusto. I was with a dozen of my students who were travelling...

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Maria an 'Extremely Dangerous' Hurricane

Maria an 'Extremely Dangerous' Hurricane

Maria strengthens to a category four storm as it nears eastern Caribbean islands.

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A company is reviving efforts to make a bionic eye brain implant for the blind

A company is reviving efforts to make a bionic eye brain implant for the blind

The prosthesis could help more people who have lost their vision than a device already on the market.

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Mystery Fossil Finally Confirmed to Be an Animal After 70 Years of Research

Mystery Fossil Finally Confirmed to Be an Animal After 70 Years of Research

How animals evolved on Earth is somewhat murky. We know that most major animal phyla we see today appeared during the Cambrian explosion 541 million years ago - but before that, the fossil record is patchy.

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IBM Makes Breakthrough in Race to Commercialize Quantum Computers

IBM Makes Breakthrough in Race to Commercialize Quantum Computers

Researchers at International Business Machines Corp. have developed a new approach for simulating molecules on a quantum computer. The breakthrough, outlined in a research paper to be published in the scientific journal Nature Thursday, uses a technique that could eventually allow quantum computers to solve difficult problems in chemistry and electro-magnetism that cannot be solved by even the most powerful supercomputers today.

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Mars researchers emerge after 8 months of isolation on Hawaii volcano

Mars researchers emerge after 8 months of isolation on Hawaii volcano

Six NASA-backed research subjects who have been cooped up in a Mars-like habitat on a remote Hawaii volcano since January emerged from isolation Sunday. They devoured fresh-picked tropical fruits, vegetables and a fluffy egg strata after eating mostly freeze-dried food during their isolation. The crew of four men and two women are part of a study designed to better understand the psychological impacts a long-term space mission would have on astronauts.

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Idaho hopes to bring stargazers to first US dark sky reserve

Idaho hopes to bring stargazers to first US dark sky reserve

Tourists heading to central Idaho will be in the dark if local officials get their way. The first International Dark Sky Reserve in the United States would fill a chunk of the state's sparsely populated region that contains night skies so pristine that interstellar dust clouds are visible in the Milky Way.

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Neil deGrasse Tyson says it might be 'too late' to recover from climate change

Neil deGrasse Tyson says it might be 'too late' to recover from climate change

Scientist and astrophysicist Neil deGrasse Tyson said Sunday that, in the wake of devastating floods and damage caused by Hurricanes Harvey and Irma, climate change had become so severe that the country "might not be able to recover." In an interview on CNN's "GPS," Tyson got emotional when Fareed Zakaria asked what he made of Homeland Security Adviser Tom Bossert's refusal to say whether climate change had been a factor in Hurricanes Harvey or Irma's strength -- despite scientific evidence pointing to the fact that it had made the storms more destructive.

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