Tuesday, 18 September 2018

One of the world’s biggest power plant developers just gave up on coal

One of the world’s biggest power plant developers just gave up on coal

Japan's Marbeni will no longer build coal power plants. Just 1,600 more plants to go.

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SpaceX: We’ll Consider Launching Space Weapons If Asked

SpaceX: We’ll Consider Launching Space Weapons If Asked

Today, it’s Tesla Roadsters; tomorrow, space lasers? SpaceX’s president and CEO says the firm would consider launching weapons into orbit for the U.S. government, if asked. “If it’s for the defense of this country, yes, I think we would,” Gwynne Shotwell said, in response to a question about SpaceX’s willingness to launch “offensive weapons” into space for the United States. She made her remarks at the Air Force Association’s annual conference. The crowd broke into applause.

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Water Droplets Don’t Just Hover on a Hot Pan. They Roll.

Water Droplets Don’t Just Hover on a Hot Pan. They Roll.

Physicists took a deeper look at the Leidenfrost effect, which you’ve likely experienced when you’ve dripped water into a pan to test its temperature.

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Molecule produced during fasting has anti-aging effect on vascular system

Molecule produced during fasting has anti-aging effect on vascular system

​Diets like intermittent fasting are proving wildly popular for their rapid weight-loss effects, but scientists are also starting to uncover how they might benefit the body in other ways. A molecule produced during fasting has now been found to apply the brakes to aging of the vascular system.

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Global warming targets could be exceeded sooner than expected because of melting permafrost

Global warming targets could be exceeded sooner than expected because of melting permafrost

Planet on brink of 'tipping point' as thawing soil and sediment releases large volumes of carbon dioxide and methane into atmosphere. The world is on course to exceed global warming limits set out in the Paris climate agreement much earlier than previously thought, scientists have warned, following the first comprehensive study of the impact of melting permafrost.

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The withering of the American coal industry

The withering of the American coal industry

President Trump has promised to revive coal's flagging fortunes. Is it possible?

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Study: people tend to cluster into four distinct personality “types”

Study: people tend to cluster into four distinct personality “types”

New sorting algorithm yields more robust, replicable results than other methods.

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Robots in workplace 'could create double the jobs they destroy'

Robots in workplace 'could create double the jobs they destroy'

The rise of machines, robots and algorithms in the workplace stands to create almost double the number of jobs for the global economy by the middle of the next decade than it puts at risk of being replaced. According to the World Economic Forum (WEF), about 133m jobs globally could be created with the help of rapid technological advances in the workplace over the next decade, compared with 75m that could be displaced.

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Corporations Are Ready to Build Moon Villages, Our Laws Are Not

Corporations Are Ready to Build Moon Villages, Our Laws Are Not

At the 2018 International Space Development (ISDC) meeting in May, Jeff Bezos—founder of Amazon and Blue Origin—laid out his vision for human expansion into the solar system. Bezos attended the event to accept the Gerard K. O’Neill Memorial Award for Space Settlement Promotion, named for the visionary physicist who pioneered many human space exploration concepts. While there, Bezos expressed a comprehensive perspective on the future of spaceflight, including the idea that we need to “leave Earth to save it.”

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Unprecedented Medical Case Shows How 4 People Got Cancer From Just One Organ Donor

Unprecedented Medical Case Shows How 4 People Got Cancer From Just One Organ Donor

It's a devastating case that serves as the medical warning we didn't even know we needed. An organ donor unknowingly bequeathed her undetected, malignant cancer at the same time as her organs.

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Gene Editing Makes Mice Cocaine-Proof

Gene Editing Makes Mice Cocaine-Proof

A new paper has taken a ingenious route towards treating cocaine addicted mice – by developing a CRISPR-powered skin grafts that produce an anti-cocaine enzyme.

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Monday, 17 September 2018

SpaceX to Unveil 1st Passenger for Private BFR Rocket Moon Trip Tonight! How to Watch.

SpaceX to Unveil 1st Passenger for Private BFR Rocket Moon Trip Tonight! How to Watch.

It's going to be a big night for space tourism. The private spaceflight company SpaceX will reveal its first passenger for a trip around the moon on the company's massive BFR rocket and you can watch it all live online. SpaceX CEO Elon Musk has even dropped tantalizing previews of the BFR's new rocket design on Twitter.

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Why we say “OK”

Why we say “OK”

How a cheesy joke from the 1830s became the most widely spoken word in the world.

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Alien-hunting AI discovers dozens of mysterious fast radio bursts

Alien-hunting AI discovers dozens of mysterious fast radio bursts

Astronomers with the Breakthrough Listen program used AI (artificial intelligence) to find 72 repeating, short, unpredictable radio bursts, from a mysterious source 3 billion light years away.

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The US Military Has Developed a Tooth Microphone That's So Stealth It's a Little Unnerving

The US Military Has Developed a Tooth Microphone That's So Stealth It's a Little Unnerving

A lot of military technology manages to be both awe-inspiring and vaguely terrifying, and so it is with the Molar Mic – this little microphone and speaker combination actually clips on to the wearer's back teeth.

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Magic mushrooms

Magic mushrooms

From making biofuels to eating up harmful plastics, fungi could help us build a greener planet. Fungi could not just help rid the planet of plastic by degrading it, but by making it obsolete it, too. Research in the Kew report suggests that naturally made materials using fungal mycelia are being used increasingly often instead of more harmful materials such as polystyrene and leather.

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Study: A Daily Baby Aspirin Has No Benefit For Healthy Older People

Study: A Daily Baby Aspirin Has No Benefit For Healthy Older People

Results from a large international study show that risks from taking daily low-dose aspirin outweigh the potential benefits for older people in generally good health.

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Solar power can fulfill electricity demand by 2050, say experts

Solar power can fulfill electricity demand by 2050, say experts

Experts at a seminar yesterday said the country could generate 100 per cent of its electricity from renewable energy in 2050 if steps are taken to achieve the target, reports UNB. “Scarcity of land is no longer a problem for solar energy as technologies are improving and different forms of new systems like floating solar and rooftop solar are coming up with more efficiency,” said Munawar Moin, president of Solar Module Manufacturers’ Association of Bangladesh (SMMAB).

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Swedish student whose flight disruption went viral now faces charges

Swedish student whose flight disruption went viral now faces charges

The Swedish student who livestreamed her onboard protest against the deportation of an Afghan asylum seeker over the summer is being charged with violating Sweden’s Aviation Act, broadcaster SVT reported on Friday. Student activist Elin Ersson protested against the Swedish government’s policy of deporting some rejected asylum seekers to Afghanistan by boarding an Istanbul-bound flight that carried an Afghan man who was to be returned home after being denied asylum.

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Sunday, 16 September 2018

Sugar pills relieve pain for chronic pain patients

Sugar pills relieve pain for chronic pain patients

Someday doctors may prescribe sugar pills for certain chronic pain patients based on their brain anatomy and psychology. And the pills will reduce their pain as effectively as any powerful drug on the market, according to new research. Northwestern Medicine scientists have shown they can reliably predict which chronic pain patients will respond to a sugar placebo pill based on the patients’ brain anatomy and psychological characteristics.

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A Solar Filament Erupts

A Solar Filament Erupts

What's happened to our Sun? Nothing very unusual -- it just threw a filament. Toward the middle of 2012, a long standing solar filament suddenly erupted into space producing an energetic Coronal Mass Ejection (CME). The filament had been held up for days by the Sun's ever changing magnetic field and the timing of the eruption was unexpected. Watched closely by the Sun-orbiting Solar Dynamics Observatory, the resulting explosion shot electrons and ions into the Solar System, some of which arrived at Earth three days later and impacted Earth's magnetosphere.

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Why NASA wants to build a nuclear reactor on the Moon

Why NASA wants to build a nuclear reactor on the Moon

Everyone's talking about the Moon. It'll be 50 years this Christmas since Apollo 8 first flew to the Moon – with the crew taking the famous Earthrise photos – and we're close to the 50th anniversary of Apollo 11's first moon landing and moonwalk for Neil Armstrong and Buzz Aldrin. Can we go back? Should we go back? NASA knows we probably have to go back, if only to use the Moon as an off-Earth stepping stone to enable deeper solar system exploration missions, so it's spent years trying to create a nuclear reactor that can be operated there.

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NASA has discovered Arctic lakes bubbling with methane—and that's very bad news

NASA has discovered Arctic lakes bubbling with methane—and that's very bad news

Lakes across Alaska and Siberia have started to bubble with methane, and the release of this highly potent greenhouse gas has scientists worried. Last month NASA released footage showing the bubbling Arctic lakes, which are the result of a little known phenomenon called “abrupt thawing.” It occurs when the permafrost—ground that has been frozen for potentially thousands of years—thaws faster than expected.

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Saturday, 15 September 2018

It's hard to spread the idiot fruit

It's hard to spread the idiot fruit

In a few idyllic parts of Queensland grows the idiot fruit, a tall tree with intricate flowers and some of the largest seeds in Australia.

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Spectacular ice age wolf pup and caribou dug up in Canada

Spectacular ice age wolf pup and caribou dug up in Canada

The Klondike region of Canada is famous for its gold, but now other remarkable ancient treasures have been unearthed from the melting permafrost. Two mummified ice age mammals – a wolf pup and a caribou calf – were discovered by gold miners in the area in 2016 and unveiled on Thursday at a ceremony in Dawson in Yukon territory.

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In nearly 60 countries, solar power is deemed the cheapest source of energy power

In nearly 60 countries, solar power is deemed the cheapest source of energy power

It is now official that solar power is recognized to be the cheapest source of energy power in countries with low income, providing companies and governments to let go of the coal and gas in exchange of renewable energy. Bloomberg New Energy Finance or BNEF provided a data that shows that in 2016, the average solar energy price in nearly 60 countries declined per megawatt to $1.65 million, with wind energy source at $1.66 million per megawatt.

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The Closest Exoplanet to Earth Could Be "Highly Habitable"

The Closest Exoplanet to Earth Could Be "Highly Habitable"

Just a cosmic hop, skip and jump away, an Earth-size planet orbits the closest star to our sun, Proxima Centauri. Ever since the discovery of the exoplanet—known as Proxima Centauri b—in 2016, people have wondered whether it could be capable of sustaining life. Now, using computer models similar to those used to study climate change on Earth, researchers have found that, under a wide range of conditions...

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A brave soul bringing the news.

A brave soul bringing the news.

“And the Oscar goes to...”

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California to launch its 'own damn satellite' to track greenhouse gases

California to launch its 'own damn satellite' to track greenhouse gases

California is set to launch a satellite to track greenhouse gases, as former US Secretary of State John Kerry and island nation leaders warned that the world is far off course to avoid the worst effects of rising temperatures. Gov. Jerry Brown announced plans for the satellite on the last day of a climate change summit hosted by San Francisco, in a final rebuke to President Donald Trump’s denial of man-made warming.

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AI just detected 72 radio bursts that could come from aliens

AI just detected 72 radio bursts that could come from aliens

Searching the skies for extraterrestrial life means spending a lot of time separating signals from noise. Luckily, AI is particularly good at that. In a new study accepted by The Astrophysical Journal, researchers describe how they used data previously collected from fast radio bursts (FRBs), a type of mysterious pulse from billions of light years away, to train a neural network to find dozens more in already-collected data.

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Space observatory at centre of alien conspiracy asks for ‘patience’

Space observatory at centre of alien conspiracy asks for ‘patience’

A space observatory at the centre of swirling alien conspiracy theories has asked for “patience” as it continues to be locked down. The Sunspot Solar Observatory in Sunspot, New Mexico caught the attention of the world when it was shut down by FBI agents who reportedly swooped on the facility after arriving in elite Blackhawk helicopters. It led immediately to suggestions the advanced technology inside of the facility spotted something it shouldn’t – such as proof of extraterrestrials, UFOs or even some baseless speculation that the observatory had spotted that the sun has started dying.

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Cosmic 'hotspots' may be evidence of a universe that existed before ours

Cosmic 'hotspots' may be evidence of a universe that existed before ours

Scientists agree that the story of the universe began 13.8 billion years ago, when everything — all the matter and energy and even space itself — emerged from the extraordinarily hot, dense cauldron known as the Big Bang. But ask a scientist what came before that first moment, and you’re likely to get a shrug. To many, thinking about a time before the beginning of time makes no sense.

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Friday, 14 September 2018

It’s Now Possible To Telepathically Communicate with a Drone Swarm

It’s Now Possible To Telepathically Communicate with a Drone Swarm

A person with a brain chip can now pilot a swarm of drones — or even advanced fighter jets, thanks to research funded by the U.S. military’s Defense Advanced Research Projects Agency, or DARPA. The work builds on research from 2015, which allowed a paralyzed woman to steer a virtual F-35 Joint Strike Fighter with only a small, surgically-implantable microchip. On Thursday, agency officials announced that they had scaled up the technology to allow a user to steer multiple jets at once.

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SpaceX Books the First Tourist to the Moon

SpaceX Books the First Tourist to the Moon

The moon may soon get its first tourist — and first human visitor in more than four decades. SpaceX announced Thursday that it's booked the world's first private passenger to the moon. Elon Musk's space technology company said on Twitter the unnamed traveler would board its BFR (or Big Falcon Rocket) to the moon, where only 24 people have ever traveled. Only 12 of those people actually walked on the moon, and they were all Americans.

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Can Science Cure Aging?

Can Science Cure Aging?

History and literature are filled with warnings about the danger of seeking eternal life. But in the latest episode of Crazy/Genius, some scientists say that a dramatic expansion of human lifespans is within reach.

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The language the French forbade

The language the French forbade

Despite centuries of efforts to make standardised French the language of all of France, Occitan, which is intrinsically tied to the local culture, could not be suppressed.

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SpaceX announces new plan to send tourist around Moon

SpaceX announces new plan to send tourist around Moon

SpaceX on Thursday announced a new plan to launch a tourist around the Moon using its Big Falcon Rocket (BFR), a massive launch vehicle that is being designed to carry people into deep space.

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Soon your doctor will be able to wirelessly track your health—even through walls

Soon your doctor will be able to wirelessly track your health—even through walls

MIT professor Dina Katabi is building a gadget that can sit in one spot and track everything from breathing to walking, no wearables required.

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Nearly third of Earth’s surface must be protected to prevent mass extinction, warn leading scientists

Nearly third of Earth’s surface must be protected to prevent mass extinction, warn leading scientists

Two leading scientists have issued a call for massive swathes of the planet’s land and sea to be protected from human interference in order to avert mass extinction. Current levels of protection “do not even come close to required levels”, they said, urging world leaders to come to a new arrangement by which at least 30 per cent of the planet’s surface is formally protected by 2030. Chief scientist of the National Geographic Society Jonathan Baillie and Chinese Academy of Sciences biologist Ya-Ping Zhang made their views clear in an editorial published in the journal Science.

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SpaceX says it will send someone around the Moon on its future monster rocket

SpaceX says it will send someone around the Moon on its future monster rocket

SpaceX has signed its first customer to fly on the company’s huge new rocket, the BFR, the company says. The passenger will fly on the monster ship around the Moon, though there are no details yet regarding when the trip will happen. SpaceX says it will announce who is flying — and why — on Monday, September 17th. The BFR, or the Big Falcon Rocket, is the giant rocket that SpaceX is currently developing to send humans to the Moon and Mars. The BFR design, presentated by CEO Elon Musk last year, consists of a combined rocket and spaceship, called the BFS for Big Falcon Spaceship.

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Thursday, 13 September 2018

Human survival cannot be left to politicians. We're losing our life support systems

Human survival cannot be left to politicians. We're losing our life support systems

In a world of increasingly complex issues, survival cannot be left to political opinion — it has to be guided by our best scientific and technological minds.

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Schizophrenia breakthrough: Scientists identify new suspect at 'scene of crime'

Schizophrenia breakthrough: Scientists identify new suspect at 'scene of crime'

As a type of immune cell, it has always been considered one of the good guys. But in a stunning breakthrough in schizophrenia research, scientists say the "macrophage" immune cell can go rogue, causing havoc in the brain. "Macrophage" means "big eaters" in Greek and is a fitting name for the cell because - when behaving - it digests cellular debris and foreign substances.

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If self-driving cars want to transform cities, they’ll have to figure out Boston first

If self-driving cars want to transform cities, they’ll have to figure out Boston first

The city's infamous roads and drivers have created some "unique" challenges for autonomous vehicles. But that's sort of the point.

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'One of the boys': Beluga whales adopt lost narwhal in St. Lawrence River

'One of the boys': Beluga whales adopt lost narwhal in St. Lawrence River

An unusual visitor has been hanging out in the St. Lawrence River for the past three years: A narwhal, more than 1,000 kilometres south of its usual range. But the lone narwhal is not alone — it appears he has been adopted by a band of belugas. The narwhal — thought to be a juvenile male because of its half-metre-long tusk — was filmed in July playing among a pod of young belugas, thought to be mostly or all males.

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67% of Netflix Subscribers Would Rather Cancel Their Subscription Than See Ads

67% of Netflix Subscribers Would Rather Cancel Their Subscription Than See Ads

As Netflix tests advertisements for its original content on its own streaming platform, users remain vehement that they do not want to see advertising during their streams, a poll conducted by Cordcutting.com has found. In a survey of 2,000 self-identifying Netflix users, respondents overwhelmingly say that they’d rather pay more for Netflix than sit through ads on the service: 83 percent of users would choose a price hike over ads, while just 17 percent would rather see ads than pay more.

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'Single piece of plastic' can kill turtles

'Single piece of plastic' can kill turtles

New study: Ingesting even a single piece of plastic exposes sea turtles to a 20% chance of death.

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Beyond the cloud: Amazon Web Services hiring engineers for ‘big, audacious space project’

Beyond the cloud: Amazon Web Services hiring engineers for ‘big, audacious space project’

According to two recently deleted job postings on the internet, where nothing can ever really be deleted, Amazon Web Services is hiring technical engineers to develop cloud services for satellites and “space-based systems.” TJI Research spotted the listings, which called for a software engineer and product manager to “to help innovate and disrupt the launch, satellite and space world with new AWS products, services and features,” according to one of the job ads, for “a new AWS service that will have a historic impact.”

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Scientific publishing is a rip-off. We fund the research – it should be free

Scientific publishing is a rip-off. We fund the research – it should be free

Those who take on the global industry that traps research behind paywalls are heroes, not thieves, says George Monbiot

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Nuclear fusion scientists just solved a major problem in harnessing plasma hotter than the Sun

Nuclear fusion scientists just solved a major problem in harnessing plasma hotter than the Sun

Being able to control plasma that is hotter than the Sun is notoriously difficult.

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Discovered: Optimal magnetic fields for suppressing instabilities in tokamaks

Discovered: Optimal magnetic fields for suppressing instabilities in tokamaks

Fusion, the power that drives the sun and stars, produces massive amounts of energy. Scientists here on Earth seek to replicate this process, which merges light elements in the form of hot, charged plasma composed of free electrons and atomic nuclei, to create a virtually inexhaustible supply of power to generate electricity in what may be called a “star in a jar.”

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