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Walker 'stunned' to see ship hovering high above sea off Cornwall
David Morris encounters rare optical illusion known as superior mirage while out on coastal stroll There are only so many polite words that come to mind when one spots a ship apparently hovering above the ocean during a stroll along the English coastline. David Morris, who captured the extraordinary sight on camera, declared himself "stunned" when he noticed a giant tanker floating above the wate
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Late-Stage Pandemic Is Messing With Your Brain
I first became aware that I was losing my mind in late December. It was a Friday night, the start of my 40-somethingth pandemic weekend: Hours and hours with no work to distract me, and outside temperatures prohibitive of anything other than staying in. I couldn't for the life of me figure out how to fill the time. "What did I used to … do on weekends?" I asked my boyfriend, like a soap-opera amn
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Scientists Believe They Found a Chunk of an Ancient Planet in Africa
Ancient Planet According to a new analysis, ScienceAlert reports , a meteorite found last year in Algeria is actually older than the Earth itself. Instead, an international team of scientists behind the research say, it appears to be a remnant of an ancient protoplanet — making the space rock an extraordinary curiosity that could offer unprecedented insights into the early years of our solar syst
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NASA: This Asteroid Will Get So Close It Could Smash Into Earth's Satellites
Earth to the Moon An asteroid roughly the size of the Eiffel Tower passed by Earth on Friday — and NASA scientists say its next flyby in 2029 might result in a collision with orbiting satellites. On Friday night, the asteroid 99942 Apophis (named after the Ancient Egyptian demon serpent god of chaos) came within 10.4 million miles of Earth, according to Insider . While that's a comfortable distan
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France Tested Nuclear Weapons in Africa. Now Radioactive Dust Is Drifting Back Into France.
Welcome Home Back in 1960, France conducted nuclear tests in the Sahara Desert. Referred to by the codename Gerboise Bleue, the tests included the detonation of four nuclear bombs in Algeria over the course of 14 months. Now, fallout from those explosions is coming back home, according to Euronews , as strong seasonal winds carry radioactive Saharan dust all the way back to France. Thankfully, ex
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How to poison the data that Big Tech uses to surveil you
Every day, your life leaves a trail of digital breadcrumbs that tech giants use to track you. You send an email, order some food, stream a show. They get back valuable packets of data to build up their understanding of your preferences. That data is fed into machine-learning algorithms to target you with ads and recommendations. Google cashes your data in for over $120 billion a year of ad revenu
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Artist Uses 5G Robot to Tattoo Somebody In A Different Location
Distance Tattoo As part of a marketing stunt for telecom T-Mobile Netherlands, Dutch TV personality Stijn Fransen got a tattoo by a tattoo artist — but remotely, through the use of a 5G-enabled robot. Tattoo artist Wes Thomas tattooed Fransen remotely through the use of a cleverly engineered robotic arm that used machine learning to learn the placement of Fransen's arm and map the placement onto
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Study shows that the GW190521 event could be explained by primordial black holes
In September 2020, the LIGO/Virgo collaboration, a large team of scientists working at different universities worldwide, announced that they had detected most massive gravitational wave binary signal observed to date, which they called GW190521. In a paper published in Physical Review Letters, they explored the hypothesis that this signal was produced by the merger of two black holes, with at leas
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World's first dinosaur preserved sitting on nest of eggs with fossilized babies
The fossil in question is that of an oviraptorosaur, a group of bird-like theropod dinosaurs that thrived during the Cretaceous Period, the third and final time period of the Mesozoic Era (commonly known as the 'Age of Dinosaurs') that extended from 145 to 66 million years ago. The new specimen was recovered from uppermost Cretaceous-aged rocks, some 70 million years old, in Ganzhou City in southe
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Xanadu announces programmable photonic quantum chip able to execute multiple algorithms
A team of researchers and engineers at Canadian company Xanadu Quantum Technologies Inc., working with the National Institute of Standards and Technology in the U.S., has developed a programmable, scalable photonic quantum chip that can execute multiple algorithms. In their paper published in the journal Nature, the group describes how they made their chip, its characteristics and how it can be us
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The story of polar aurora just got much bigger: Unknown magnetospheric mechanisms revealed
A critical ingredient for auroras exists much higher in space than previously thought, according to new research in the journal Scientific Reports. The dazzling light displays in the polar night skies require an electric accelerator to propel charged particles down through the atmosphere. Scientists at Nagoya University and colleagues in Japan, Taiwan and the U.S. have found that it exists beyond
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Earth's deep mantle may have proton rivers made of superionic phases
Pierfranco Demontis said in 1988, "Ice becomes a fast-ion conductor at high pressure and high temperatures," but his prediction was only hypothetical until recently. After 30 years of study, superionic water ice was verified experimentally in 2018. Superionicity may eventually explain the strong magnetic field in giant planetary interiors.
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Large supernova remnant detected by eROSITA
Using the extended Röntgen Survey Imaging Telescope Array (eROSITA) instrument onboard the Spektr-RG spacecraft, astronomers have detected in X-rays a new large supernova remnant (SNR). The newfound object, dubbed "Hoinga," turns out to be one of the largest SNR discovered at wavelengths other than radio. The finding is reported in a paper published February 26 on the arXiv pre-print server.
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Gas stoves are bad for the environment—but what if the power goes out?
Upgrading to an electric stove is just one step. We also need a grid that can withstand climate events. (Ayesha Firdaus on Unsplash/) Burning fossil fuels directly into your home is not amazing for your health, and it certainly isn't an ideal way to provide heat or cook when it comes to decreasing our carbon footprints, as individuals and as a whole society. But it's not often that we think of ou
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A better way to measure acceleration
You're going at the speed limit down a two-lane road when a car barrels out of a driveway on your right. You slam on the brakes, and within a fraction of a second of the impact an airbag inflates, saving you from serious injury or even death.
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Research offers insights on how night shift work increases cancer risk
A recently published study offers new clues as to why night shift workers are at increased risk of developing certain types of cancer compared to those who work regular daytime hours. Findings suggest that night shifts disrupt natural 24-hour rhythms in the activity of certain cancer-related genes, making night shift workers more vulnerable to DNA damage while also causing the body's DNA repair me
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The fight to save America's most endangered mammal
Three black-footed ferrets in the wild. (US Fish and Wildlife Service/) Dedicated captive breeding and reintroduction efforts have brought black-footed ferrets, America's most endangered mammal , back from the brink. A recent successful cloning of a ferret named Elizabeth Ann even offers the hope of restoring genetic diversity to these mammals. But despite it all, these animals—agile, elongated m
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Microscopic wormholes possible in theory
Wormholes play a key role in many science fiction films—often as a shortcut between two distant points in space. In physics, however, these tunnels in spacetime have remained purely hypothetical. An international team led by Dr. Jose Luis Blázquez-Salcedo of the University of Oldenburg has now presented a new theoretical model in the science journal Physical Review Letters that makes microscopic w
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11 percent of food waste comes from our homes
Nearly 17 percent of food that reaches stores, homes and restaurants ends up trashed. (Ella Olsen Unslpash/) It's no surprise that wasting things is a nightmare for the environment—everything that we eat, wear, and otherwise consume takes up natural resources that in many cases are far from infinite. When it comes to food waste, the environment takes a double whammy—water, packaging, transportati
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Ultra-short-period super-Earth detected by TESS
Using NASA's Transiting Exoplanet Survey Satellite (TESS), an international team of astronomers has detected a new super-Earth exoplanet. The newfound alien world, designated TOI-1685b, is about 70% larger than Earth and has an ultra-short orbital period of approximately 0.67 days. The finding is reported in a paper published March 1 on arXiv.org.
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Perseverance's giant 'hand lens' will scour Mars for signs of ancient life
Perseverance's PIXL instrument will look for the textures of life in Martian rocks. (NASA/JPL-Caltech/) Follow all of PopSci's Perseverance-mission coverage here. NASA engineers have shipped an envoy, the Perseverance rover, nearly 300 million miles to read the secrets trapped in the stones of Mars. A seven-foot robotic arm is responsible for completing the journey, bringing a cluster of various
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Engineering marvel: Sixth mirror cast for Giant Magellan Telescope
The Giant Magellan Telescope announces fabrication of the sixth of seven of the world's largest monolithic mirrors. These mirrors will allow astronomers to see farther into the universe with more detail than any other optical telescope before. The sixth 8.4-meter (27.5 feet) mirror—about two stories high when standing on edge—is being fabricated at the University of Arizona's Richard F. Caris Mirr
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Higher airborne pollen concentrations correlated with increased SARS-CoV-2 infection rates, as evidenced from 31 countries across the globe [Environmental Sciences]
Pollen exposure weakens the immunity against certain seasonal respiratory viruses by diminishing the antiviral interferon response. Here we investigate whether the same applies to the pandemic severe acute respiratory syndrome coronavirus 2 (SARS-CoV-2), which is sensitive to antiviral interferons, if infection waves coincide with high airborne pollen concentrations. Our original…
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Humans are altering Earth's tides, and not just through climate change
Miami, which will be increasingly prone to coastal flooding. (Unsplash/) If you'd been standing in just the right Miami Beach parking garage in 2016, you would have been visited by an octopus , washed in on an especially high tide. In Boston, you might have needed to wade to work in the past year. Across the country, sunny day floods, which occur because of high tide, rather than storms, are beco
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Animals are better at social distancing than we'll ever be
Examining social dynamics in animals can help us understand how diseases spread and how viruses evolve. (Unsplash/) Around this time last year, as the COVID-19 pandemic gained steam around the world, the phrase "social distancing" quickly became part of popular discourse. But as a practice, social distancing has been around for a lot longer—and not just in humans. A new review paper, out today in
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Reevaluating the timing of Neanderthal disappearance in Northwest Europe [Evolution]
Elucidating when Neanderthal populations disappeared from Eurasia is a key question in paleoanthropology, and Belgium is one of the key regions for studying the Middle to Upper Paleolithic transition. Previous radiocarbon dating placed the Spy Neanderthals among the latest surviving Neanderthals in Northwest Europe with reported dates as young as…
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A safe and highly efficacious measles virus-based vaccine expressing SARS-CoV-2 stabilized prefusion spike [Microbiology]
The current pandemic of COVID-19 caused by severe acute respiratory syndrome coronavirus 2 (SARS-CoV-2) highlights an urgent need to develop a safe, efficacious, and durable vaccine. Using a measles virus (rMeV) vaccine strain as the backbone, we developed a series of recombinant attenuated vaccine candidates expressing various forms of the…
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Paw hygiene no reason to ban assistance dogs from hospitals
According to a UN-agreement, assistance dogs like guide dogs, signal dogs and medical response dogs are welcome in hospitals and other public places. However, in practice, they are regularly refused entry. Hygiene reasons are often given as the main argument for this. Research now shows that the paws of assistance dogs are cleaner than the shoe soles of their users, and thus, paw hygiene is no rea
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Postbiosynthetic modification of a precursor to the nitrogenase iron-molybdenum cofactor [Chemistry]
Nitrogenases utilize Fe–S clusters to reduce N2 to NH3. The large number of Fe sites in their catalytic cofactors has hampered spectroscopic investigations into their electronic structures, mechanisms, and biosyntheses. To facilitate their spectroscopic analysis, we are developing methods for incorporating 57Fe into specific sites of nitrogenase cofactors, and we…
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Controlling adhesions in the abdomen
Adhesions are scars in the abdomen, which can occur after surgery, often have serious consequences. Now, researchers have discovered how such adhesions form. The findings may help to develop a drug to prevent adhesions in the future.
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Behavioral responses across a mosaic of ecosystem states restructure a sea otter-urchin trophic cascade [Ecology]
Consumer and predator foraging behavior can impart profound trait-mediated constraints on community regulation that scale up to influence the structure and stability of ecosystems. Here, we demonstrate how the behavioral response of an apex predator to changes in prey behavior and condition can dramatically alter the role and relative contribution…
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A conserved Ctp1/CtIP C-terminal peptide stimulates Mre11 endonuclease activity [Biochemistry]
The Mre11-Rad50-Nbs1 complex (MRN) is important for repairing DNA double-strand breaks (DSBs) by homologous recombination (HR). The endonuclease activity of MRN is critical for resecting 5′-ended DNA strands at DSB ends, producing 3′-ended single-strand DNA, a prerequisite for HR. This endonuclease activity is stimulated by Ctp1, the Schizosaccharomyces pombe homolog…
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Improved photosynthetic capacity and photosystem I oxidation via heterologous metabolism engineering in cyanobacteria [Plant Biology]
Cyanobacteria must prevent imbalances between absorbed light energy (source) and the metabolic capacity (sink) to utilize it to protect their photosynthetic apparatus against damage. A number of photoprotective mechanisms assist in dissipating excess absorbed energy, including respiratory terminal oxidases and flavodiiron proteins, but inherently reduce photosynthetic efficiency. Recently, it has.
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Legume-microbiome interactions unlock mineral nutrients in regrowing tropical forests [Environmental Sciences]
Legume trees form an abundant and functionally important component of tropical forests worldwide with N2-fixing symbioses linked to enhanced growth and recruitment in early secondary succession. However, it remains unclear how N2-fixers meet the high demands for inorganic nutrients imposed by rapid biomass accumulation on nutrient-poor tropical soils. Here, we…
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Life expectancy in adulthood is falling for those without a BA degree, but as educational gaps have widened, racial gaps have narrowed [Social Sciences]
A 4-y college degree is increasingly the key to good jobs and, ultimately, to good lives in an ever-more meritocratic and unequal society. The bachelor's degree (BA) is increasingly dividing Americans; the one-third with a BA or more live longer and more prosperous lives, while the two-thirds without face rising…
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Northern Hemisphere summers may last nearly half the year by 2100
Without efforts to mitigate climate change, summers spanning nearly six months may become the new normal by 2100 in the Northern Hemisphere, according to a new study. The change would likely have far-reaching impacts on agriculture, human health and the environment, according to the study authors.
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Nu dubbelt så många kvinnor i kvinnobiografiskt lexikon
Med buller och bång lanserades Svenskt kvinnobiografiskt lexikon, SKBL, för exakt tre år sedan. Lagom till internationella kvinnodagen finns det nu dubbelt så många kvinnor porträtterade. När svenskt kvinnobiografiskt lexikon lanserades innehöll databasen 1000 kvinnor, därefter beviljades projektet medel från Riksbankens jubileumsfond, och databasen kunde utökas med lika många kvinnor till. – Det
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Now we health workers know how empty Boris Johnson's 'clap for heroes' really was | Rachel Clarke
We've had a traumatic year and lost patients and colleagues. But all he offers us is a derisory 1% pay offer Rachel Clarke is a palliative care doctor and the author of Breathtaking: Inside the NHS in a Time of Pandemic When the NHS saved his life last April , Boris Johnson could not have reacted more fulsomely on social media. "Our NHS is the beating heart of this country," he waxed lyrical in a
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Growing My Faith in the Face of Death
I have spent a good part of my life talking with people about the role of faith in the face of imminent death. Since I became an ordained Presbyterian minister in 1975, I have sat at countless bedsides, and occasionally even watched someone take their final breath. I recently wrote a small book, On Death , relating a lot of what I say to people in such times. But when, a little more than a month
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Unlocking the Mysteries of Long COVID
Photographs by Jonno Rattman Image above: Nearly a year after she was infected with the coronavirus, Caitlin Barber still uses a wheelchair outside. This article was published online on March 8, 2021. The quest at Mount Sinai began with a mystery. During the first wave of the coronavirus pandemic in New York City, Zijian Chen, an endocrinologist, had been appointed medical director of the hospita
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From Pfizer to Moderna: who's making billions from Covid-19 vaccines?
The companies in line for the biggest gains – and the shareholders who have already made fortunes Coronavirus – latest updates See all our coronavirus coverage The arrival of Covid-19 vaccines promises a return to more normal life – and has created a global market worth tens of billions of dollars in annual sales for some pharmaceutical companies. Among the biggest winners will be Moderna and Pfi
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The Differences Between the Vaccines Matter
Public-health officials are enthusiastic about the new , single-shot COVID-19 vaccine from Johnson & Johnson, despite its having a somewhat lower efficacy at preventing symptomatic illness than other available options. Although clinical-trial data peg that rate at 72 percent in the United States, compared with 94 and 95 percent for the Moderna and Pfizer-BioNTech vaccines, many experts say we sho
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There's No Real Reason to Eat 3 Meals a Day
For the first 34 years of my life, I always ate three meals a day. I never thought much about it—the routine was satisfying, it fit easily into my life, and eating three meals a day is just what Americans generally do. By the end of last summer, though, those decades of habit had begun to erode. The time-blindness of working from home and having no social plans left me with no real reason to plod
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Meghan and Harry Go to War
After the trial separation, here comes the messy divorce. And a vital question: Who gets custody of the narrative? It has been less than a month since Prince Harry and Meghan Markle finalized their split from the British Royal Family, renouncing their patronages and honorary appointments as well as their income. The fallout between the couple and Buckingham Palace has been painful and public. "Th
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Land could be worth more left to nature than when farmed, study finds
Nature-rich sites such as woods and wetlands more valuable because of the 'ecosystem services' they provide The economic benefits of protecting nature-rich sites such as wetlands and woodlands outweigh the profit that could be made from using the land for resource extraction, according to the largest study yet to look at the value of protecting nature at specific locations. Scientists analysed 24
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We Already Got Rid of the Filibuster Once Before
Last week the House of Representatives passed H.R. 1, a bill that would make voter registration automatic, end partisan gerrymandering, strengthen campaign-finance law, and bolster oversight of lobbyists. It's the most sweeping package of democracy reforms in generations. Yet the mood among most democracy reformers was not giddy excitement but resigned dismay: Although H.R. 1 has passed the House
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What the Media Are Missing About Joe Manchin
In 2005, I gathered with my fellow West Virginia trial lawyers for our annual conference in Charleston, the state's capital. After legal seminars, we headed for back rooms, where the gregarious group told stories, drank whiskey, and assessed the latest developments in state politics. That year, we couldn't stop talking about our new governor, Joe Manchin, because, even though the group had suppor
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Global heating pushes tropical regions towards limits of human livability
Rising heat and humidity threatening to plunge much of the world's population into potentially lethal conditions, study finds The climate crisis is pushing the planet's tropical regions towards the limits of human livability, with rising heat and humidity threatening to plunge much of the world's population into potentially lethal conditions, new research has found. Related: 'It is the question o
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What do near-death experiences mean, and why do they fascinate us?
Psychiatrist Bruce Greyson has spent decades talking to people about near-death experiences. His work raises questions about what happens when we die, and how we ought to choose to live. Illustration by Paul Blow When Gregg Nome was 24 years old, he slipped into the churn beneath a waterfall and began to drown, his body pummelled against the sandy riverbed. What he saw there surprised him. Sudden
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In Our House, Dr. Seuss Was Contraband
My mother had a ban on pork, and I thought she was mad that I broke it. One afternoon four decades ago, when I was about 8, I walked into my family's house after playing outside and saw my mother sitting in the yellow recliner with a book in her lap. She had found the copy of Dr. Seuss's Green Eggs and Ham. I knew that I was in trouble, because normally no one sat in the canary-colored La-Z-Boy,
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Conservative Donors Have Their Own Cancel Culture
The University of Texas insists that it is willing to confront its past racism and make sweeping changes for the sake of justice. What it won't do is deal with the racist history of its school song. Last summer, amid nationwide protests over George Floyd's death in police custody, more than two dozen Texas football players and other athletes issued a list of demands aimed at making their school m
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Mind your head: scientists discover incredible self-decapitating sea slug – video
Researchers at Japan's Nara Women's University have discovered a new trait exhibited by the sacoglossan sea slug – it has the ability to decapitate itself, then regrow its body. The process, from shedding all of itself below the neck to regrowing a new body, takes less than a month, in an extreme example of a process known as autotomy Keep your head: the self-decapitating sea slugs that regrow th
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France underestimated impact of nuclear tests in French Polynesia
Groundbreaking new analysis could allow more than 100,000 people to claim compensation France has consistently underestimated the devastating impact of its nuclear tests in French Polynesia in the 1960s and 70s, according to groundbreaking new research that could allow more than 100,000 people to claim compensation. France conducted 193 nuclear tests from 1966 to 1996 at Moruroa and Fangataufa at
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In Cryptic Tweet, Elon Musk Refers to Antimatter-Powered Rockets
Yes Man SpaceX's Starship is powered by methane. Its Falcon 9 runs on highly refined kerosene known as RP-1. But if a new tweet means anything, SpaceX CEO Elon Musk already has his eyes set on a much higher-tech rocket fuel: antimatter. In a reply to a post about antimatter rockets — hypothetical spacecraft that would be powered by antimatter — Musk tweeted just two words : "Ultimately, yes." Not
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NHS to use world's most expensive drug to treat spinal muscular atrophy
Zolgensma, which costs £1.79m for one-off treatment, will be available in England this year for the first time The world's most expensive drug, which treats babies and young children with a rare and often fatal degenerative disorder, will be available this year for the first time on the NHS in England. Zolgensma, which costs £1.79m per dose, halts the progression of spinal muscular atrophy (SMA),
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The Supreme Court Might Kill Voting Rights—Quietly
At the center of any democracy is the right to vote. If people cannot vote, then they have no say in the laws that govern them and cannot be truly free and equal citizens. But the right to vote is not a machine that runs by itself; it is dependent on the work of laws and institutions. And in America, conservatives have turned those laws and institutions against that right, seeking to reverse hard
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Why Cuttlefish Are Smarter Than We Thought
Cuttlefish, the squishy sea creatures, showed impressive self-control in an experiment. It means they have something in common with primates. (Image credit: Yasser Al-Zayyat/AFP via Getty Images)
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TV Had Never Seen Anything Like WandaVision Before
This story contains spoilers for all of WandaVision. Within minutes of WandaVision 's finale dropping on Disney+ this morning, my Twitter timeline began to fill with questions about what the ending meant. After a few hours, YouTubers started posting breakdowns of what viewers might have missed. New comments flooded subreddits about how the story serves the Marvel Cinematic Universe, adding to the
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China Releases Stunning Images From Mars Orbiter
Mars Up Close The China National Space Administration (CNSA) released several new high-definition images this week captured by its Tianwen-1 Mars probe, currently in the Red Planet's orbit, the South China Morning Post reports . The agency released two panchromatic (meaning sensitive to all wavelengths of visible light), high resolution images showing the planet's surface, dotted with tiny dunes,
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Rare meteorite chunk traced by scientists to Gloucestershire driveway
'Dream come true' to locate first carbonaceous chondrite seen in UK, part of fireball that caused sonic boom A lump of a rare meteorite that lit up the night sky over the UK and northern Europe last week has been recovered from a driveway in Gloucestershire. The fragment, weighing nearly 300 grams, and other pieces of the space rock were located after scientists reconstructed the flight path of t
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CDC: People Who Are Fully Vaccinated Can Gather Indoors
The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention announced today that Americans who are fully vaccinated against COVID-19 can gather in small numbers indoors, The New York Times reports. Other precautions, including social distancing and masking, are still in effect in public spaces. "Fully vaccinated" means that at least two weeks have elapsed since a given person has received their second Pfizer
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Guns Are a Threat to the Body Politic
Updated at 1:03 p.m. ET on March 8, 2021. Why regulate guns? The standard answer is that gun laws can prevent needless deaths and physical injury. But this is not a complete accounting. As gun-brandishing protesters and armed invasions of legislatures demonstrate, guns inflict more than physical injuries—they transform the public sphere on which a constitutional democracy depends. America must re
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Surprising new feature of human evolution discovered
Researchers find a new feature of human evolution. Humans have evolved to use less water per day than other primates. The nose is one of the factors that allows humans to be water efficient. Scientists discovered a new feature that makes humans distinct from other primates like chimpanzees. The research shows that the human body uses 30% to 50% less water per day than our closest animal relatives
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What It's Like When Racism Comes for You
Mari was at Taco Bell filling a paper cup with Baja Blast when the man started shouting. White and 30-something, and wearing a bulky winter coat, he lumbered up to the soda fountain and confronted her. His words sounded slightly slurred, Mari thought, like he might be drunk. At first she ignored him; this wasn't the first time a drunk man had shouted at her at a fast-food place in Chicago. But th
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Anger after Indonesia offers Elon Musk Papuan island for SpaceX launchpad
Biak island residents say SpaceX launchpad would devastate island's ecology and displace people from their homes Papuans whose island has been offered up as a potential launch site for Elon Musk's SpaceX project have told the billionaire Tesla chief his company is not welcome on their land, and its presence would devastate their island's ecosystem and drive people from their homes. Musk was offer
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Deadly pig disease could have led to Covid spillover to humans, analysis suggests
African swine fever led to mass cull of pigs in China and may have increased human-virus contact as people turned to other meat Coronavirus – latest updates See all our coronavirus coverage An outbreak of a deadly pig disease may have set the stage for Covid-19 to take hold in humans, a new analysis has suggested. African swine fever (ASF), which first swept through China in 2018, disrupted pork
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It's unavoidable: we must ban fossil fuels to save our planet. Here's how we do it | Roland Geyer
Twice before, humanity has mitigated severe global environmental threats. In both cases we did this not with 'cap and trade' systems, taxes, or offsets, but with bans Time is running out to meet the goals of the Paris Agreement and avoid catastrophic climate change. The 2018 special report of the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC) "suggests a remaining budget of about 420 Gigatonnes
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Inaction leaves world playing 'Russian roulette' with pandemics, say experts
New coalition calls on governments to tackle root cause of emerging infections – the destruction of nature Coronavirus – latest updates See all our coronavirus coverage Governments must fill a major gap in post-Covid recovery plans with action on the root cause of pandemics – the destruction of nature – a new coalition of health and environment groups has warned. Crucial investments and actions a
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69 Percent of Americans Want the COVID Vaccine
Great news: The number of Americans who say they would take a coronavirus vaccine if it were offered to them is continuing to steadily climb. As of the latest Pew Research Center survey , 69 percent of Americans say they would "definitely" or at least "probably" get vaccinated. To be fair, that includes the 19 percent of the more than 10,000 survey respondents who'd already received at least one
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We Can't Curb the Presidency Without Fixing Congress
" The constitutional Presidency … has become the imperial Presidency. " The historian Arthur Schlesinger Jr. delivered that complaint in 1973, just ahead of a wave of reforms that sought to cut the presidency down to size. The War Powers Act of 1973, the Anti-Impoundment Act of 1974, the creation of the House and Senate Intelligence Committees in the mid-1970s: These and other measures aimed to r
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Winners of the 2020 World Nature Photography Awards
The submissions to this year's World Nature Photography Awards have been judged, and the winning images and photographers have just been announced. Thomas Vijayan was the Grand Prize winner, with his image of an orangutan climbing a tree. The contest organizers have shared with us some of the winning images, shown below, from their 13 categories. Captions were provided by the photographers and ha
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Vitamin D supplements may offer no Covid benefits, data suggests
Two studies fail to find evidence to support claims supplements protect against coronavirus Coronavirus – latest updates See all our coronavirus coverage The idea that vitamin D supplements can reduce susceptibility to, and the severity of, Covid-19 is seductive – it offers a simple, elegant solution to a very complex and lethal problem. But analyses encompassing large European datasets suggest t
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Harvard Scientists Propose Super-Tall Towers to Power Moon Base
Moon Tower Scientists have come up with an ambitious new idea to provide bases on the Moon's surface with solar power, New Scientist reports : massive, kilometer-high towers constructed from lunar concrete and almost entirely covered in solar panels. The team, led by Sephora Ruppert from Harvard University, suggest in a yet-to-be-peer-reviewed paper that the towers could be constructed by mixing
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We Have to Grieve Our Last Good Days
F or me, it's the last time I swam in the ocean. It was a February evening in Florida, and I didn't know that the people I was there with would be the last new friends I'd make, on a work trip I didn't know would be the last I'd take. Everyone else seemed content to sit on the sand and look up nearby restaurants on the internet. But I felt like maybe I'd regret it if I didn't go in. So I changed
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What Is Life? Its Vast Diversity Defies Easy Definition.
People often feel that they can intuitively recognize whether something is alive, but nature is filled with entities that flout easy categorization as life or non-life — and the challenge may intensify as other planets and moons open up to exploration. In this excerpt from his new book, Life's Edge: The Search for What It Means to Be Alive , published today, the science writer Carl Zimmer discuss
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We Now Can See a Virus Mutate Like Never Before
In the beginning, there was one. The first genome for the virus causing a mysterious illness we had not yet named COVID-19 was shared by scientists on January 10, 2020. That single genome alerted the world to the danger of a novel coronavirus. It was the basis of new tests as countries scrambled to find the virus within their own borders. And it became the template for vaccines, the same ones now
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How to Put Out Democracy's Dumpster Fire
Illustrations by Yoshi Sodeoka This article was published online on March 8, 2021. T o read the diary of Gustave de Beaumont, the traveling companion of Alexis de Tocqueville, is to understand just how primitive the American wilderness once seemed to visiting Frenchmen. In a single month, December 1831, Tocqueville and Beaumont were on a steamship that crashed; rode a stagecoach that broke an axl
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New Algorithm Breaks Speed Limit for Solving Linear Equations
Grade school math students are likely familiar with teachers admonishing them not to just guess the answer to a problem. But a new proof establishes that, in fact, the right kind of guessing is sometimes the best way to solve systems of linear equations, one of the bedrock calculations in math. As a result, the proof establishes the first method capable of surpassing what had previously been a ha
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Face masks safe to use during intense exercise, research suggests
'Limited' cardiology research also shows mask wearing likely to reduce spread of coronavirus in indoor gyms Coronavirus – latest updates See all our coronavirus coverage Face masks can be worn safely during intense exercise, and could reduce the risk of Covid-19 spreading at indoor gyms, preliminary findings suggests. Scientists from the Monzino Cardiology Centre (CCM) in Milan and the University
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UK needs to prepare for 'hard winter' of flu and respiratory viruses, says top medic
Population immunity to non-Covid viruses could be lower owing to lack of exposure, says PHE official Coronavirus – latest updates See all our coronavirus coverage The UK should steel itself for a "difficult autumn" and "hard winter" of illnesses because people have lived for an unusually long period without exposure to respiratory viruses, one of the country's top medics has warned. Dr Susan Hopk
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Dutch clubbers hit the dancefloor for study into easing lockdown
1,300 people take part in music event designed to aid decisions on how to reopen country despite coronavirus Coronavirus – latest updates See all our coronavirus coverage It wasn't quite one of the great carefree, hedonistic nights of the past, but clubbers in Amsterdam were given a short reprieve from lockdown at the weekend as part of an examination of the risks attached to getting people back
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How early humans' quest for food stoked the flames of evolution
A love of complex smells and flavours gave our ancestors an edge and stopped hangovers Human evolution and exploration of the world were shaped by a hunger for tasty food – "a quest for deliciousness" – according to two leading academics. Ancient humans who had the ability to smell and desire more complex aromas, and enjoy food and drink with a sour taste, gained evolutionary advantages over thei
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Contradicting Rumors of His Death, Elon Musk Appears to Be Alive
Tweets from the Grave Reports of the SpaceX founder's death have been greatly exaggerated. Elon Musk took to Twitter Friday evening to let the world know he was still alive — contradicting efforts by trolls to convince the world otherwise . The tweet showcased his trademark level-headed thoughtfulness and sincerity, offering compelling insight into the world and the human condition at large. Just
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The Women Who Changed War Reporting
In 1966, a young American journalist named Frances FitzGerald began publishing articles from South Vietnam in leading magazines, including this one. She was the unlikeliest of war correspondents—born into immense privilege, a daughter of the high-WASP ascendancy. Her father, Desmond FitzGerald, was a top CIA official; her mother, Marietta Tree, a socialite and liberal activist. FitzGerald was rai
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The Pandemic Has Made Women Angry
In July, Clare Wenham—and her daughter, Scarlett, and Scarlett's picture of a unicorn—went viral. Wenham researches global health policy at the London School of Economics, and she was giving an interview to the BBC about Britain's attempts to manage the coronavirus pandemic. But Scarlett had another pressing issue on her mind: Which shelf displayed her unicorn to its best advantage? Wenham soldie
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Medieval women 'put faith in birth girdles' to protect them during childbirth
New findings cement idea that ritual and religion was invoked using talismans to soothe nerves With sky-high levels of maternal mortality, the science of obstetrics virtually nonexistent and the threat of infectious disease always around the corner, pregnant medieval women put their faith in talismans to bring them divine protection during childbirth. From amulets to precious stones, the list of
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Physicists Propose New Idea for "Human-Safe" Wormholes
What if we could traverse distances on an astronomical scale, in a blink of an eye, through the use of a wormhole? It's a topic rife with speculation — but if recently published research is anything to go by, traversing through an interdimensional wormhole may not be quite as far-fetched as it sounds. Two separate groups of researchers have suggested new theories as to how to make wormholes safe
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China and Russia Sign Deal to Build Research Base on Moon
Moon Pact Now it's official. Back in February, the governments of Russia and China agreed, informally, to collaborate on an upcoming Moon base . Now, both countries have gone ahead and signed a memorandum of understanding that formalizes those plans — an intriguing collaboration which, if it goes anywhere, could cut NASA out of both nations' goal for a long term Moon presence. Red Moon The collab
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Butterfly population collapse linked to climate change
New research has found that warmer autumns are driving the extinction of monarch butterflies. Globally, 40 percent of insect populations are in decline; one-third are in danger of extinction. Insects pollinate three-fourths of the world's crop supply, resulting in 1.4 billion jobs. Insects might often seem like a nuisance, yet life on this planet would be impossible without them. Sure, mosquitoes
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SpaceX Just Rolled Its Next Starship Prototype Onto the Pad
Next Up SpaceX has rolled its next massive Starship prototype to the launch pad at its testing facilities in Boca Chica, Texas, NASA Spaceflight reports. The prototype, dubbed SN11, is the fourth full-scale test subject of the company's ambitious spacecraft. The three prototypes that came before it — SN8, SN9, and SN10 — were all run through their paces, with varying degrees of success. Case in p
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NASA May Have Picked a Place to Fly the Mars Helicopter
Drop Off After touching down in the Jezero Crater on February 18, NASA's Perseverance rover is getting ready for its big journey. Over the last couple of weeks, the six-wheeled rover has stretched its arms and its wheels — and now it's hunting for a spot to drop one of its most prized possessions: Ingenuity, a small helicopter capable of flying in the Red Planet's thin atmosphere. "I've continued
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A device-independent protocol for more efficient random number generation
Recent advancements in the development of experimental Bell tests have enabled the implementation of a new type of device-independent random number generator. Remarkably, this new type of random number generators can be realized with malicious quantum devices, without requiring detailed models of the quantum devices used.
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Old dogs need to learn new tricks. Here's why.
The idea that older brains become less flexible to learning is in some ways a myth. (Jordan Whitt//) Since at least the 1500s, the adage "You can't teach an old dog new tricks" has preached the impossibility of schooling older folks. The trope still manages to color stereotypes of aging as more of a downhill slide than a journey toward wisdom. But 16th-century know-it-alls didn't have access to 2
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More than half of snacks marketed as healthy are high in fat, salt or sugar
Action on Salt assessed 119 snacks including lentil curls and chickpea chips, finding some to be saltier than seawater More than half of seemingly healthy snacks analysed by experts are high in fat, salt and/or sugar, prompting calls for more "honest" labelling. Action on Salt assessed 119 snacks, including dried/roasted pulses and processed pulse snacks such as lentil curls, chickpea chips and p
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The myth of bringing your full, authentic self to work | Jodi-Ann Burey
Calls for authenticity at work ask for passionate people with diverse, fresh perspectives who challenge old ways of thinking. But too often workplace culture fails to support the authenticity of professionals of color and other underrepresented groups, leading instead to backlash and fewer opportunities. Writer Jodi-Ann Burey outlines steps toward exposing privilege and achieving true equity on th
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Tesla Reportedly Hooking Up Giant Battery to Texas' Failed Grid
Texas Battery According to drone images taken earlier this month, Tesla might be attempting to plug a massive mega-battery into Texas' failed electric grid, Bloomberg reports . Bloomberg suggests that Tesla's rumored battery, which is being constructed outside of Houston, could provide enough power for about "20,000 homes on a hot summer day." While Tesla hasn't confirmed that it is indeed behind
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Scientists Suspect This Drug Can Actually Delay Aging
It's the stuff of legend: a way to stop — or at least slow down — aging. Unlike Ponce de León searching for immortality in the swamps of Florida, though, a growing number of scientists now believe a treatment for Type 2 diabetes might be the key to slowing down the aging process, according to The Washington Post . More specifically, the scientists believe that the treatment — called metformin — c
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This Photo of the Sun Is Unlike Anything You've Ever Seen
Sun Stunner A new homemade photo of the Sun looks absolutely mind-blowing. A Redditor going by the moniker TheVastReaches posted the photo to the Space subreddit showcasing their highly-detailed and processed photograph of the Sun. Turbulent Solar Chromosphere Perhaps more surprisingly, the photo wasn't taken from a high-tech observatory — but from the user's backyard . "This photo was shot on my
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Great Apes Have Become the First Non-Humans to be Vaccinated for COVID
Great apes at the San Diego Zoo became the first non-humans to receive a COVID-19 vaccine last week. The nine great apes — four orangutans and five bonobos — received two doses of an experimental vaccine on March 3 , according to National Geographic . That makes them the first ever non-humans to receive a COVID shot. If you're looking to get ahold of the "Ape Vaccine" like it's the Moderna or Pfi
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Covid data show sewage monitoring could be vital in infection control
A pilot study's analysis of schools' wastewater shows its potential as an early warning system for public health teams Coronavirus – latest updates See all our coronavirus coverage Schools may have had more Covid-19 infections before Christmas than previous research showed, according to data from a pilot study that senior public health experts believe could provide a crucial early warning system
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The epic battle with cancer's 'Death Star'
Forty years after the mutant genes that cause the deadliest cancers were discovered, drugs that target them could be approved In the early 1980s, Channing Der was just beginning his career as a scientist at Harvard Medical School when he happened upon a discovery that would change the course of cancer research. At the time, the holy grail of cancer biology was discovering so-called oncogenes – ge
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Watch this Boeing fighter jet drone fly for the first time
The aircraft on its first flight in Australia. (Boeing/) On February 27, a fascinating little aircraft lifted off the deck in Australia for its inaugural flight. Unlike most planes, this one had no human on board. The test pilot in charge of the flight remained safely on the ground at a facility in South Australia called the RAAF Woomera Range Complex. The 38-foot-long aircraft, called the Loyal
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Perseverance Mars rover: Nasa releases first-drive review
Vehicle had no problem going 6.5 metres, turning and backing up, then photographed its own wheel marks on planet's surface Nasa's Mars rover Perseverance has taken a short drive two weeks after touching down, mission managers have said. The six-wheeled, car-sized probe went 6.5 metres (21.3 feet) during a half-hour test within Jezero crater, an ancient lake bed and river delta. Continue reading..
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Italy says decision to block 250,000 doses of Covid vaccine from Australia was 'not a hostile act'
Foreign affairs minister says Europe 'ravaged' by coronavirus and Italy is working according to EU regulation Germany voices concern over Italy's block of vaccine export to Australia Coalition to expand quarantine facility amid fears of Covid vaccine disruption Italian officials say the decision to block a shipment of 250,000 doses of AstraZeneca's coronavirus vaccine destined for Australia was "
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People Are Obsessed With the Vaccine That Only Requires One Dose
When the Johnson & Johnson COVID-19 vaccine was approved for use, experts shared concerns that people would refuse to take it and hold out for the Moderna or Pfizer vaccines that seem to offer better protection against the coronavirus. But those fears seem to be largely misplaced. Now, The Verge reports that many people who get to choose which of the three vaccines they get are opting for the Joh
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The story behind our new national park and its unique legacy
The New River Gorge National Park and Preserve managed to uphold the outdoor traditions of the region while also getting top billing as a tourist destination. (Nick Kelley /) This story originally featured on Outdoor Life . The last time I visited the New River , it was deserted. My buddies and I had planned a multi-day fishing trip, and we set off without bumping into anyone at the put-in. We ca
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Optical Illusion Photo Shows Huge Oil Tanker Hovering Over the Sea
Floating Ships A bizarre photograph of a ship seemingly hovering above the sea off the coast of Cornwall, UK, is making its rounds online this week. The image, taken by local photographer David Morris, shows a giant oil tanker apparently defying gravity. But — shocker — the tanker hasn't actually found a way to defeat the laws of physics. Instead, The Guardian reports, it's an illusion caused by
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'This Is Unprecedented': Why America's Housing Market Has Never Been Weirder
I f you think the U.S. housing market is behaving very, very strangely these days, that probably means you're paying attention. In almost any other year, a weak economy would cripple housing. But the flash-freeze recession of 2020 corresponded with a real-estate boom, led by high-end purchases in suburbs and small towns. Even stranger, in America's big metros, home prices and rents are going in o
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Roundworms 'read' wavelengths in the environment to avoid dangerous bacteria that secrete colorful toxins
Roundworms don't have eyes or the light-absorbing molecules required to see. Yet, new research shows they can somehow sense color. The study, published in the journal Science, suggests worms use this ability to assess the risk of feasting on potentially dangerous bacteria that secrete blue toxins. The researchers pinpointed two genes that contribute to this spectral sensitivity and are conserved a
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Pablo Escobar's hippos might be filling an ancient ecological niche
Some ecologists think these hippos may have happened upon a valuable niche once occupied by semiaquatic hoofed mammals that roamed South America 100,000 years ago. (Jacqueline Oakley/) In 1981, notorious drug lord Pablo Escobar imported four hippos from Africa to his estate near Medellín, Colombia. After his death in 1993, the herd meandered into the nearby Magdalena River. Ecologists estimate th
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Royals Could Choose Ordinary Anonymity
In 2019, a romance blossomed between an eligible European royal and a Black commoner whom traditionalists considered unsuitable for a royal marriage. The lovebirds were not Meghan Markle and Prince Harry, who had already been married for a year. They were Princess Märtha Louise of Norway and her boyfriend, a Californian named Durek Verrett. Like Prince Harry, Princess Märtha Louise is a spare hei
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Antarctic Peninsula warming up due to heat in Tasman Sea
The melting of the Earth's ice cover intensified in the 20th century, with glaciers and sea ice in the Arctic and Antarctic regions melting at alarming speeds. In fact, The Antarctic Peninsula (AP), which is the only landmass of Antarctica extending out past the Antarctic Circle, was found to be one of the most rapidly warming regions on the planet during the second half of the 20th century. This
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Scientists question NHS algorithm as young people called in for jab
Apparent inconsistencies in QCovid risk prediction tool wrongly identifying some patients as high risk Coronavirus – latest updates See all our coronavirus coverage Scientists are questioning the reliability of algorithms used to trawl through patients' health records and flag those who should be asked to shield and prioritised for vaccination. GPs have reported being contacted by young, healthy
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Italy passes 'terrible threshold' of 100,000 coronavirus deaths
One year after being the first western country to lock down, Italy is bracing for a third wave of the pandemic Coronavirus – latest updates See all our coronavirus coverage Italy has recorded 100,000 coronavirus deaths, a year after it became the first western country to impose a total lockdown and as it braces for a third wave of the pandemic. Among those who have died in recent days are Monique
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Achondrite found to date back to just two million years after birth of solar system
A team of researchers affiliated with several institutions in France and one in Japan has found that an achondrite found in Algeria (in the Saharan desert) last year dates back to just 2 million years after the birth of the solar system. In their paper published in Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences, the group describes their study of the rock and what they learned about it.
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Will Kyrsten Sinema Change Her Mind?
E very other January , the 435 members of the House of Representatives convene in the Capitol and determine, as their first order of business, who will lead them for the next two years. The roll is taken, and one by one, each member says aloud their choice for speaker. In 2015, nearly every Democrat cast their vote for Nancy Pelosi, the longtime party leader. Not Kyrsten Sinema. When it was her t
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SpaceX Plans to Bring Starlink Internet to Cars, Boats, and Planes
Starlink Mobile SpaceX is asking US regulators for permission to build out its Starlink broadband internet service for cars, trucks, shipping boats, and aircraft, The Verge reports . So far, SpaceX has focused its Starlink efforts on providing rural homes with broadband speed internet. Now it wants to go mobile, as detailed in a request filed last Friday with the Federal Communications Commission
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How fast is the universe expanding? Galaxies provide one answer.
Determining how rapidly the universe is expanding is key to understanding our cosmic fate, but with more precise data has come a conundrum: Estimates based on measurements within our local universe don't agree with extrapolations from the era shortly after the Big Bang 13.8 billion years ago.
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Key step reached to­ward long-​sought goal of a silicon-​based laser
When it comes to microelectronics, there is one chemical element like no other: silicon, the workhorse of the transistor technology that drives our information society. The countless electronic devices we use in everyday life are a testament to how today very high volumes of silicon-based components can be produced at very low cost. It seems natural, then, to use silicon also in other areas where
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The US Army's New Goggles Could Let Soldiers See Around Corners
Goggle Up The US Army is hard at work on a new pair of hi-tech goggles that allows infantry to see in the dark and even see around corners, Popular Mechanics reports . The goggles, called the Integrated Visual Augmentation System (IVAS), incorporate a feed from a variety of cameras mounted to the front of the goggles. The goggles can also incorporate feeds from other omnidirectional cameras mount
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SpaceX Reveals Plans For Hugely Expanded Spaceport in Texas
Everything's Bigger SpaceX is making money moves in developing its launch site in South Texas, Ars Technica reports , with plans for its expanded spaceport now public. The plans, as outlined in a public notice , include plans for "the continued development of the SpaceX vertical launch area with the expansion and addition of test, orbital, and landing pads, integration towers, associated infrastr
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Watch a black bear take on a striped skunk in a surprising faceoff
A spraying skunk can hit small targets up to 10 feet away. (LeniG from Pixabay/) This story originally featured on Field & Stream . Skunks are the unlikely badasses of the animal world. Small, waddling, and sort of cute, they would seem vulnerable if it weren't for weapon they keep loaded in their anal glands. As it is, they go where they want, brazenly poking their noses into every hole. Coyotes
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Expert: In the Future, Spine Implants May Cause Orgasms on Demand
The future isn't all flying cars, jetpacks, and express trips to Mars — it's could also be the ability to give yourself an orgasm at the push of a button. Or at least that's what Justin Lehmiller, a social psychologist and research fellow at Indiana University's Kinsey Institute, believes. Lehmiller, who is also the host of the "Sex and Psychology" podcast, recently gave an interview with The Wal
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Beyond Order by Jordan Peterson review – a ragbag of self-help dictums
There is too much messianic passion and not enough enlightening psychology in Peterson's follow-up to the bestselling 12 Rules for Life Few books in recent years have had quite so noisy a cultural impact as Jordan Peterson's 12 Rules for Life: An Antidote to Chaos . With its odd mixture of Darwinian determinism, Jungian myth-interpretation and Heideggerian ontology (Being written with a capital B
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Four new hacking groups have joined an ongoing offensive against Microsoft's email servers
A Chinese government-linked hacking campaign revealed by Microsoft this week has ramped up rapidly. At least four other distinct hacking groups are now attacking critical flaws in Microsoft's email software in a cyber campaign the US government describes as "widespread domestic and international exploitation" with potential impact on hundreds of thousands of victims worldwide. Beginning in Januar
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New Paper: Space Is Full of Naturally Occurring Atomic Bombs
Going Supernova Researchers are hypothesizing that a type of nuclear fission that occurs in white dwarfs results in explosions akin to atomic bombs here on Earth. The paper, which will soon be published in Physical Review Letters , details how the reactions could create stellar explosions called Type 1a supernovae, which the study's authors believe occurs due to a series of smaller nuclear explos
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NASA Names Mars Landing Site After Sci-Fi Pioneer Octavia Butler
Welcome to Mars, Octavia Butler NASA has announced that the official name of the Perseverance Rover touchdown site is "Octavia E. Butler Landing," in honor of the late, award-winning science fiction writer. The agency made their announcement on Friday during a press conference detailing Percy's recent drive along the Martian surface , according to Space.com . "Butler's pioneering work explores th
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Five Coronavirus Variants That You Should Know About
For the first few months of the pandemic, it seemed like SARS-Cov-2, which is the coronavirus that causes COVID-19, wasn't really mutating into new variants. At the time, that was a relief. It's easier to treat a disease — or protect against it — when it's not evolving into new versions of itself the whole time. That quickly changed, though, as scientists started to notice genetic changes. Now th
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The Starship Landing Looks Absolutely Incredible in Slow Motion
Big Boom SpaceX's Starship SN10 prototype experienced a bit of an oopsie after managing to land . The tower of stainless steel decided to give up the ghost several minutes after touchdown on Wednesday, going up in a massive plume of flames — just like its two predecessors SN8 and SN9. "RIP SN10, honorable discharge," Musk tweeted after the event. Slow Mo Courtesy of space launch photography YouTu
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Uncanny Deepfake Tom Cruise Fools People on TikTok
Deepfake Tom Cruise Hollywood star Tom Cruise just joined TikTok. Or did he? Videos uploaded by an account called DeepTomCruise shocked users on the video sharing platform with its uncanny clips of a — but not the — Tom Cruise playing golf and doing magic tricks, as The Guardian reports . The masterful deepfakes are the result of some hard work by Belgian visual effects artist Christopher Ume, wh
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Covid fightback: the critical role of HIV experts
The speed and cooperation of the Covid response has been honed by decades of dealing with 'the biggest pandemic the world has ever seen' When Dr Anthony Fauci spoke at the 20th International Aids Conference in Melbourne in 2014, his appearance garnered little media attention. Nearly seven years later, the HIV expert and director of the US National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases has
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Covid: mystery person with Brazil variant in England found in Croydon
Previously unknown individual who tested positive for variant located in south London after massive search Coronavirus – latest updates See all our coronavirus coverage A person who tested positive for the Brazilian variant of Covid has been tracked down to Croydon and appears not to have infected anyone else, the health secretary has said. Matt Hancock sought to reassure the public after a week-
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The Moon Has a Huge, Invisible, Comet-Like Tail
Casting Moonbeams Unless you happen to have a special kind of camera, you may never notice that our Moon casts a long, invisible tail of particles trailing behind it, just like a comet or a shooting star. The Moon's tail, which trails behind it and occasionally even blasts Earth, has been a subject of scientific fascination since its discovery in the late 1990s, but The New York Times reports tha
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NFTs Explained: What They Are and Why They're Selling for Millions of Dollars
A couple of days ago, the musician Grimes sold some animations she made with her brother Mac on a website called Nifty Gateway. Some were one-offs, while others were limited editions of a few hundred — and all were snapped up in about 20 minutes, with total takings of more than $6 million. Despite the steep price tag, anybody can watch or (with a simple right-click) save a copy of the videos, whi
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China and Russia unveil joint plan for lunar space station
Russian space agency Roscomos and Chinese counterpart CNSA to develop research facilities on surface of moon or in its orbit Russia and China have unveiled plans for a joint lunar space station, with the Russian space agency Roscomos saying it has signed an agreement with China's National Space Administration (CNSA) to develop a "complex of experimental research facilities created on the surface
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Software Glitch Shuts Down Hubble Space Telescope
Safe Mode NASA's Hubble Space Telescope has encountered a software glitch and had to put itself into a protective "safe mode" over the weekend, Space.com reports . In the early morning hours of Sunday, "the Hubble Space Telescope went into safe mode due to an onboard software error," reads a tweet by the telescope's official Twitter account. "All science systems appear normal and Hubble is safe a
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Evidence found of regional magnetic field anomaly in Southeast Asia 800 years ago
An international team of researchers has found evidence of a regional magnetic field anomaly in Southeast Asia, approximately 800 years ago. In their paper published in Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences, the group describes their study of slag and other remnants left over from iron smelters who once worked in a part of Cambodia formerly known as Tonle Bak and what they found.
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UK Covid live news: Whitty tells MPs situation could 'turn bad very fast' if lockdown easing rushed
Latest updates: chief medical adviser and chief scientific adviser give evidence to Commons science committee NHS Nightingale hospitals to close from next month Return to schools could alter England's roadmap, PM warns Labour calls for audit of UK's preparedness for next pandemic 'Once-in-a-generation event': a year of lockdown in Europe Coronavirus – latest global updates 2.28pm GMT Nicola Sturg
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We read books to my daughter from birth, which enriched all our lives
A difficult pregnancy meant the only item I dared buy for my unborn child was a book. When she arrived we read it to her every day Nine years ago, I gave birth to a little girl. And now that little girl has grown into a bookworm . It began, as all stories about books should really begin, in a bookshop. I was several months pregnant and I picked up an American picture book I had never come across
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Of Course Andrew Cuomo Isn't Going to Resign
A tale of hubris and comeuppance is unfolding daily around New York Governor Andrew Cuomo. It's a tale of a man who bullied colleagues for years and took time out of managing the pandemic to write a book about how well he was managing the pandemic, but is now facing accusations of harassment, incompetence, and fatal mistakes. Thousands more people in New York nursing homes died of COVID-19 last s
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A Note From The Publisher of Futurism
Dear Futurism Readers — I'm James Del. For the past 4 years, I've been the publisher of Futurism.com — but this is my first time writing for the site. Nice to finally meet you. Broadly speaking, it's my job to ensure that our small, ten-person operation has the means to continue supporting itself as we bring curated and original science and tech news, perspective, takeaways, and features to our m
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At AstraZeneca, we know that until everyone is safe from Covid, no one is safe | Pascal Soriot
The scientific community are rising to the challenge, undertaking an unprecedented global health programme Pascal Soriot is the chief executive officer of AstraZeneca Coronavirus – latest updates See all our coronavirus coverage Covid-19 is a virus that knows no boundaries and has inflicted terrible suffering across the world. Now more than ever, we must remember that no one is safe until everyon
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How much longer will the Hubble Space Telescope last?
On Sunday, NASA announced that the Hubble Space Telescope had gone into safe mode once again , "due to an onboard software error." The telescope's science systems were not affected at all, but all science operations were suspended while crews on the ground worked to fix the problem. The agency didn't release any details as to what exactly the glitch was, what had caused it, or what was being done
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5 ways to spot if someone is trying to mislead you when it comes to science
It's not a new thing for people to try to mislead you when it comes to science. But in the age of COVID-19—when we're being bombarded with even more information than usual, when there's increased uncertainty, and when we may be feeling overwhelmed and fearful—we're perhaps even more susceptible to being deceived.
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Will the EU emerge from the coronavirus crisis stronger or weaker? | Timothy Garton Ash
After its mixed Covid response, the EU must now focus on really delivering what its citizens want Coronavirus – latest updates See all our coronavirus coverage A year ago this week, we learned with astonishment that Italy was going into a national lockdown to fight a strange new virus that had apparently come from somewhere in China. Within a fortnight, Spain, France and Britain had followed. Now
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Here's what the CDC says you can do once you're vaccinated—and what it doesn't
Fully vaccinated Americans can now gather indoors, maskless and without distancing—as long as it's with others who've gotten their shots, according to new guidance from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. The advice, which comes as vaccinations continue to gain speed in America, are a positive signal for those who have had a course of shots. But it shows there's a lot we still don't k
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Former NASA Leader Says SpaceX Should Build NASA's Moon Rocket
Former NASA deputy administrator Lori Garver believes that the agency's extremely expensive and overdue Space Launch System (SLS), the rocket meant to return American astronauts to the surface of the Moon, just isn't worth the money and the wait. In a new interview with CBS, Garver argued that "I would not have recommended the government build a $27 billion rocket," referring to the SLS, "when th
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As Peru Battles Covid-19, Tuberculosis Finds New Footing
The United Nations aims to end the epidemic of tuberculosis by 2030, but Covid-related disruptions to TB treatments may push that goal out of reach — and end up propagating the most deadly strains that are resistant to treatment. Can AI-assisted testing delivered directly to communities stop the spread?
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Coronavirus live news: US passes 90m vaccinations; UK daily deaths drop to 82
Norway should prepare for more restrictions, says PM; Italy records 207 deaths; Israel reopens restaurants. Follow latest updates Covid data show sewage monitoring could be vital in infection control How do we track and measure new variants of coronavirus? Dutch clubbers hit dancefloor for study into easing lockdown Coronavirus – latest updates See all our coronavirus coverage 1.01am GMT Mexico's
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The Power of Playing Dead
A study shows that pretending to be immobile — sometimes for an hour or more — helps larvae of insects called antlions outlast hungry predators.
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Will we ever be able to recycle all our plastic?
Some forms of waste are just too costly to recycle. (Nick Fewings/Unsplash/) We're losing the war against waste. Although many Americans reflexively use recycling bins, less than one-third of plastics are reworkable . Even that figure is misleading, since particles like food residue can get materials rerouted to the trash. In 2017, just 8.4 percent of all plastics found new life, according to the
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4 countries that prove money doesn't always buy happiness
Source: World Happiness Report 2019, World Bank (Sara Chodosh/) Each year, the makers of the World Happiness Report survey people from more than 150 countries and try to pinpoint a recipe for bliss. Wealth, to some extent, tends to raise contentedness, but several regions are more satisfied than their coffers alone can explain. Some secrets to a cheery existence include solid social support, a lo
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Tantalizing signs of phase-change 'turbulence' in RHIC collisions
Physicists studying collisions of gold ions at the Relativistic Heavy Ion Collider (RHIC), a U.S. Department of Energy Office of Science user facility for nuclear physics research at DOE's Brookhaven National Laboratory, are embarking on a journey through the phases of nuclear matter—the stuff that makes up the nuclei of all the visible matter in our universe. A new analysis of collisions conducte
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Work-Life Balance Has to Include Friendship
Each installment of The Friendship Files features a conversation between The Atlantic 's Julie Beck and two or more friends, exploring the history and significance of their relationship. This week she talks with friends who created a "Working Moms With Big Jobs" support group to help navigate the challenges of parenting while maintaining a demanding career. They use the tools of corporate life—ag
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Politics Is the New Religion
Illustration by Paul Spella / Rendering by Patrick White This article was published online on March 10, 2021. T he United States had long been a holdout among Western democracies, uniquely and perhaps even suspiciously devout. From 1937 to 1998, church membership remained relatively constant, hovering at about 70 percent. Then something happened. Over the past two decades, that number has dropped
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Scientists discover slug that can decapitate itself, grow new body
In a recent study, scientists observed two species of sea slug that were able to self-decapitate, survive for weeks without organs, and regenerate entirely new bodies. The study authors proposed that the slugs are able to survive as severed heads because of the unique way they obtain energy from algae. While other animals engage in self-amputation (known as autotomy) to avoid predators, the study
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Can Evolution Explain All Dark Animal Behaviors?
Many actions that would be considered heinous to humans — cannibalism, eating offspring, torture and rape — have been observed in the animal kingdom. Most (but not all) eyebrow-raising behaviors among animals have an evolutionary underpinning.
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Driving innovation with emotional intelligence
The world watched in wonder in February as NASA's robotic rover Perseverance successfully landed on the surface of Mars with the goal of searching for evidence of past life on the red planet. The technology itself was, of course, astounding. But what really captivated the public was the video taken by a couple of miniature cameras from consumer-grade smartphones that were attached to the landing
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Cuomo Tries the Trump Defense
Andrew Cuomo and Donald Trump spent much of 2020 feuding—the former president sent dozens of tweets about the New York governor after the start of the coronavirus pandemic—but their quarrel obscured how much the two men have in common. They're both boys from Queens with a brusque manner of speaking, little patience for critics, and the benefit of famous fathers they've striven to eclipse . In 202
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There will never be a cuttlefish in the cabinet – and that makes me sad | Emma Beddington
Octopuses and their relatives are remarkably clever and controlled. How many of our top politicians can say the same? Back in the gentler days of the internet, before it was just bots and people shouting at tea , I had a blog, and through it, occasional exchanges with a woman I described as my "cephalopod correspondent". She would write, sharing interesting titbits about squid behaviour, cuttlefi
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Drone Spy Video Catches Tesla Semi Truck on Test Track
Semi Sonic Videographer Chris Nguyen flew his drone over the test track behind Tesla's Fremont factory last week and spotted something intriguing: one of the company's experimental Tesla Semi trucks in action. Nguyen uploaded two short videos from the episode: Ad Lads In InsideEV 's analysis , it looks as though Tesla was using the Model Y driving in front of the Semi in order to capture footage.
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As we approach death, our dreams offer comfort and reconciliation
One of the most devastating elements of the coronavirus pandemic has been the inability to personally care for loved ones who have fallen ill. Again and again , grieving relatives have testified to how much more devastating their loved one's death was because they were unable to hold their family member's hand —to provide a familiar and comforting presence in their final days and hours. Some had
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Do photosynthetic complexes use quantum coherence to increase their efficiency?
In a new report now published on Science Advances, Elinor Zerah Harush and Yonatan Dubi in the departments of chemistry and nanoscale science and technology, at the Ben-Gurion University of the Negev, Israel, discussed a direct evaluation of the effects of quantum coherence on the efficiency of three natural photosynthetic complexes. The open quantum systems approach allowed the researchers to sim
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Why slow-pouring coffee makes a tower of liquid in your cup
When a droplet of coffee hits the liquid surface in the cup, a characteristic tower of coffee forms for a very short time, sometimes even with a new droplet on top. In a paper that appeared in Physical Review Fluids today, a team of researchers from Amsterdam, Delft and Paris shed new light on this intricate effect.
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The human footprints of Ojo Guareña
The CENIEH has participated in the study of the prints of bare feet found at the Sala y Galerías de las Huellas site in the Ojo Guareña Karst Complex (Burgos), which are the marks left in a soft floor sediment of an exploration by a small group of people between 4600 and 4200 years ago. Dating carried out in the access galleries to this site has documented intensive human traffic during the Neolit
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Black Erasure
Nina Simone sang "[POC] is the color of my true love's hair" & they say [POC] don't crack & let us bless gumbo quimbombó & [POC]-eyed peas & [POC] weddings & broom jumps & Danez Smith wrote "& even the [POC] guy's profile reads 'sorry, no [POC] guys'" & to flirt men have asked if I'm [POC] where it counts & hey remember outcry over [POC] Rue in The Hunger Games [POC] Hermione [POC] James Bond [PO
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Kathleen Folbigg: how genetics could lead to a pardon for 'Australia's worst female serial killer'
She has always maintained her four children died of natural causes. Now 90 scientists argue she may be right Leading scientific experts are petitioning for the pardon of the woman dubbed Australia's worst female serial killer , arguing that all four of her children had rare genetic conditions that could explain their deaths. Kathleen Folbigg is in jail for killing her children as infants between
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The Flawed Fantasy World of Raya and the Last Dragon
Fantasy worlds that mirror real-life cultures have a long history in storytelling. Middle-earth, the Four Lands, Narnia, Westeros, Earthsea: These are fictional places populated by imaginary creatures and characters, but with politics, faiths, and cultural dynamics that resemble our own. They give their creators license to world-build with allegories for contemporary issues, but without worrying
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New tool finds and fingerprints previously undetected PFAS compounds in watersheds on Cape Cod
Researchers from the Harvard John A. Paulson School of Engineering and Applied Sciences (SEAS) found large quantities of previously undetectable compounds from the family of chemicals known as PFAS in six watersheds on Cape Cod using a new method to quantify and identify PFAS compounds. Exposures to some PFAS, widely used for their ability to repel heat, water, and oil, are linked to a range of he
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Portrait of a Leader Humblebragging
Some books age poorly; others are poorly aged from the moment they're published. American Crisis: Leadership Lessons From the COVID-19 Pandemic , Andrew Cuomo's recent memoir, manages to fall into both categories. The New York governor's paean to his handling of the COVID-19 crisis is in some ways a classic political chronicle: a hero's journey, through the ordeal to the victory, told by the hero
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Elon Musk Praises Tesla Nemesis, Ford, In Rare Reversal
Cars Are Hard In a rare instance of giving his competitors credit, Tesla CEO Elon Musk praised fellow American carmarker Ford for not having "gone bankrupt out of thousands of car startups," in a Thursday tweet . "Prototypes are easy, production is hard and being cash flow positive is excruciating," Musk added, . Musk was replying to a thread about a book about "Engines That Move Markets," a book
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Why reopening US schools is so complicated
Across the country, schools are wrestling with the difficult choice of whether to reopen, and how to do it with reduced risk. In Kalamazoo, Michigan—not far from one the main sites where Pfizer is frantically manufacturing vaccines—they plan to stay virtual through the end of the school year. In Iowa, a state without a mask mandate, kids can now go back to in-person learning full time. Meanwhile,
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Perseverance Martian landing point named after Octavia E Butler
Science-fiction author honoured in Nasa's chosen name for Mars rover's touchdown "Mars is a rock – cold, empty, almost airless, dead. Yet it's heaven in a way," Octavia E Butler wrote in her acclaimed novel Parable of the Sower. Decades later, Nasa has informally named the touchdown site of the Mars rover Perseverance after the late science fiction novelist. Nasa said there was "no better person"
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A little squid and its glowing bacteria yield new clues to symbiotic relationships
The relationship between the Hawaiian bobtail squid and the bioluminescent bacteria living in its light organ has been studied for decades as a model of symbiosis. Now researchers have used a powerful chemical analysis tool to identify a small molecule produced by the bacteria that appears to play an important role in their colonization of the light organ.
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Microscope allows ultrafast nanoscale manipulation while tracking energy dynamics
Since the early 2010s, ultrafast probing of materials at atomic-level resolution has been enabled by terahertz scanning tunneling microscopes (THz-STM). But these devices can't detect the dissipation of energy that happens during events such as when photons are emitted via recombination process of an electron-hole pair in a light emitting diode (LED). However, a new technique allows the tracking o
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Microsoft Retracts Paper Claiming Quantum Computing Breakthrough
A controversial 2018 research paper about the discovery of an elusive subatomic particle has been retracted by the reputable journal Nature , the BBC reports . The team, led by researchers from Microsoft, claimed at the time to have discovered evidence of the " Majorana particle ," named after the famed 1930s Italian physicist Ettore Majorana. The particle, the researchers claimed, could make qua
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The Atlantic Daily: Understanding Long COVID
For an estimated 10 to 30 percent of COVID-19 patients, recovery can take months. Known as COVID long-haulers , these patients suffer from symptoms such as severe fatigue and brain fog long after their initial infection. In the latest issue of our magazine, the writer Meghan O'Rourke surveys what doctors know so far about treating this scary illness —and explains why long COVID "may change our me
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Evidence of superfluidity in a dipolar supersolid
Superfluidity in liquids and gases can manifest as a reduced moment of inertia (the rotational analog of mass) under slow rotations. Non-classical rotational effects can also be considered in the elusive supersolid phases of matter where superfluidity can coexist with a lattice structure. In a new report now published in Science, L. Tanzi and a research team at the National Institute of Optics and
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This Soft Robot Stingray Just Explored the Deepest Point in the Ocean
While all eyes were on the dramatic descent of NASA's Perseverance rover last month, a team sent a robot into another alien world, one closer to home: the deep sea. With its towering undersea mountains, dramatic geological features, and unique creatures—many of which remain mysterious—the deep sea is the last uncharted environment on Earth. The inaccessibility isn't surprising. Sinking any intrep
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Mars Express unlocks the secrets of curious cloud
When spring arrives in southern Mars, a cloud of water ice emerges near the 20-kilometer-tall Arsia Mons volcano, rapidly stretching out for many hundreds of kilometers before fading away in mere hours. A detailed long-term study now reveals the secrets of this elongated cloud, using exciting new observations from the Mars Webcam on ESA's Mars Express.
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Charcot-Marie Tooth disease: A 100% French RNA-based therapeutic innovation
Charcot-Marie Tooth disease is the most common hereditary neurological disease in the world. It affects the peripheral nerves and causes progressive paralysis of the legs and hands. No treatment is currently available to fight this disease, which is due to the overexpression of a specific protein. Scientists from the CNRS, INSERM, the AP-HP and the Paris-Saclay and Paris universities have develope
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Study finds link between empathy and care for the environment
A study conducted by a team of researchers fromNanyang Technological University, Singapore (NTU Singapore) has found that Singaporeans who score high levels of empathy choose to prioritize the environment over the convenience and comfort of both themselves and their families or co-workers.
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Sömn kan påverka hur mycket antikroppar man bildar av vaccin
Man vet ännu inte hur länge antikropparna som bildas av vaccinet mot covid-19 finns kvar i kroppen. Tidigare studier visar att mer sömn innan och efter vaccination mot vanlig influensa kan påverka effekten. Forskare vill nu studera om livsstilsfaktorer som sömn, kost och dygnsrytm kan påverka hur långt skydd man får av coronavaccinen.
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New brain sensor offers answers about Alzheimer's
Scientists at the University of Virginia School of Medicine have developed a tool to monitor communications within the brain in a way never before possible, and it has already offered an explanation for why Alzheimer's drugs have limited effectiveness and why patients get much worse after going off of them.
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Combined technique using diamond probes enables nanoscale imaging of magnetic vortex structures
Obtaining a precise understanding of magnetic structures is one of the main objectives of solid-state physics. Significant research is currently being undertaken in this field, the aim being to develop future data processing applications that use tiny magnetic structures as information carriers. Physicists at Johannes Gutenberg University Mainz (JGU) and the Helmholtz Institute Mainz (HIM) recentl
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Space missions are building up a detailed map of the sun's magnetic field
Solar physicists have been having a field day of late. A variety of missions have been staring at the sun more intently ever before (please don't try it at home). From the Parker Solar Probe to the Solar Orbiter, we are constantly collecting more and more data about our stellar neighbor. But it's not just the big-name missions that can collect useful data—sometimes information from missions as sim
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Early Mars climate was intermittently warm
A new study that characterizes the climate of Mars over the planet's lifetime reveals that in its earliest history it was periodically warmed due to the input of greenhouse gases derived from volcanism and meteorites, yet remained relatively cold in the intervening periods, thus providing opportunities and challenges for any microbial life form that may have been emerging on the Red Planet. The st
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Elsevier journals ask Retraction Watch to review COVID-19 papers
At the risk of breaking the Fourth Wall, here's a story about peer reviews that weren't — and shouldn't have been. Since mid-February, four different Elsevier journals have invited me to review papers about COVID-19. Now, it is true that we will occasionally review — often with our researcher, Alison Abritis — papers on retractions … Continue reading
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How fast is the universe expanding? Galaxies provide one answer
Among the methods astronomers have found to measure the expansion rate of the local universe, the Hubble constant, surface brightness fluctuations is potentially one of the most precise. Scientists have now published the first good SBF estimate of the Hubble constant, pegging it at 73.3 km/s/Mpc: in the ballpark of other measurements of the local expansion, including the gold standard using Type I
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Returning to normal life is going to be a slow and steady process
With US FDA approval in hand, the Johnson & Johnson vaccine is continuing to get into arms. A few other countries, including South Africa, have begun administering it as well. (Pixabay/) Click here to see all of PopSci's COVID-19 coverage. More than 300 million vaccines have been administered across the world so far, with another 8 million being delivered each day. The vaccine rollout is accelera
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Brain activity data may improve stock market forecasts, study shows
US research suggests scans offer better price predictions than the actual choices investors make From never trading during the first 30 minutes, to not returning to a stock for a third time, financial investors have a stack of superstitions for predicting stock price changes. Now neuroscientists may have hit upon a more accurate prediction tool: scans of people's brain activity just before they m
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Oceans were stressed preceding abrupt, prehistoric global warming
Microscopic fossilized shells are helping geologists reconstruct Earth's climate during the Paleocene-Eocene Thermal Maximum (PETM), a period of abrupt global warming and ocean acidification that occurred 56 million years ago. Clues from these ancient shells can help scientists better predict future warming and ocean acidification driven by human-caused carbon dioxide emissions.
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These sea slugs sever their own heads and regenerate brand-new bodies
You've heard of animals that can lose and then regenerate a tail or limb. Scientists have discovered two species of sacoglossan sea slug that can do even better, shedding and then regenerating a whole new body complete with the heart and other internal organs. The researchers also suggest that the slugs may use the photosynthetic ability of chloroplasts they incorporate from the algae in their die
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'Island of Rats' recovers
Along the western edge of Alaska's Aleutian archipelago, a group of islands that were inadvertently populated with rodents came to earn the ignominious label of the "Rat Islands." The non-native invaders were accidentally introduced to these islands, and others throughout the Aleutian chain, through shipwrecks dating back to the 1700s and World War II occupation. The resilient rodents, which are k
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Understanding depression and developing empathy | Letters
Dr Annie Hickox advocates for the powerful combination of medication plus talking therapy. And Laurel Farrington highlights how empathy reduces when we are anxious and stressed As a mental health professional, I was glad to read Jenny Stevens' description of her experience of antidepressant medication and how it helped her during a mental health crisis that was exacerbated by Covid-19 ( I'm not a
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How the growth of ice depends on the fluid dynamics underneath
Researchers of the Toschi group of Eindhoven University of Technology think the water phase change problem with considering the water density anomaly is of great importance relating to common natural phenomena. Their research plan is firstly to understand the physics fundamentals, that is, the coupled problem of the stably and unstably stratified layers with considering the density anomaly.
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Nanoenzymes designed with a unique combination of structure and functions
Researchers at the UAB have designed minimalist biostructures that imitate natural enzymes, capable of carrying out two differentiated and reversibly regulated activities thanks to a unique combination of structural and functional properties. The strategy used opens the door to the creation of "intelligent" nanomaterials with tailor-made combinations of catalytic functions.
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Black, young and poor people in UK most likely to report Covid vaccine hesitancy
Survey finds parents of young children also more hesitant – but overall vaccine sentiment is positive Coronavirus – latest updates See all our coronavirus coverage Black people, younger adults, people living in deprived areas of England and parents of children under five are more likely to be hesitant to receive the coronavirus vaccine, according to Office for National Statistics research. The ON
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Treefrogs have noise-cancelling headphones built into their ears
A new paper suggests that the vibration of a frog's lungs feeds back into the frog's eardrums, reducing their sensitivity to certain frequencies in a process that scientists think is similar to how noise-cancelling headphones work. (Norman Lee/) Imagine that you're a female frog. It's mating time, and you're choosing a male of your species. But you have a problem. How do you pick out your suitors
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Concentric circular bands of polarization found in a ferroelectric polymer
A team of researchers from China, the U.S. and Australia has found an example of the formation of concentric circular bands of polarization in a ferroelectric polymer. In their paper published in the journal Science, the group describes the creation of whirlpools at the nano- and microscale and possible uses for the resulting toroidal textures in their materials. Lane Martin with the University of
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Insights on how night shift work increases cancer risk
A recent study offers new clues as to why night shift workers are at increased risk of developing certain types of cancer compared to those who work regular daytime hours. Findings suggest that night shifts disrupt natural 24-hour rhythms in the activity of certain cancer-related genes, making night shift workers more vulnerable to DNA damage while also causing the body's DNA repair mechanisms to
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Strict environmental laws 'push' firms to pollute elsewhere
Multinational companies headquartered in countries with tougher environmental policies tend to locate their polluting factories in countries with more lax regulations, a new study finds. While countries may hope their regulations will reduce emissions of carbon dioxide and other greenhouse gases, these results show that these policies can lead to 'carbon leakage' to other nations.
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Literature's Original Bad Bitch Is Back
H ow does a bad bitch enter the world? From the first pages of Sister Souljah's 1999 debut novel, The Coldest Winter Ever , the teenage protagonist declares that she's been a style icon since birth. "The same night I got home my pops gave me a diamond ring set in 24-karat gold," Winter Santiaga says. Practical considerations, such as whether her infant fingers could even hold up the rings, matter
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Snow Days May Never Be the Same
Snow days are uniquely beloved by kids in wintry climates. After a night of hoping, children earn a blissful surprise: a morning spent sleeping in and a day of playing outside. As Cindy Burau, a fourth-grade teacher in Lake Tahoe, California, put it: Snow days are "like gifts from the heavens that we all need: a sigh, a moment." The pandemic has threatened this tradition. For students who attend
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A Meteorite Fell In This Area and Everybody Is Looking For It
Bonjour, Météore! A small meteorite fell on France last weekend sparking calls by amateur astronomers to help hunt down the space rock. The apricot-sized rock was seen falling through Earth's atmosphere by cameras at an observatory in Mauraux, France, The Guardian reports , and landed near Aiguillon at 10:43pm on Feb 27 . Estimated to weigh 150 grams (a little over five ounces), the meteorite has
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The Guardian view on moth-watching pleasure: the pest and the beauty | Editorial
These insects have declined by a third over 50 years. While their appetites can be a nuisance, ultimately we must protect these gloriously beautiful, elusive creatures "Night opens; night traversed by wandering moths; night hiding lovers roaming to adventure." So runs a rapturous passage in Virginia Woolf's The Waves, a novel she had originally considered titling The Moths. The insects are a recu
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How do we track and measure new variants of coronavirus?
Behind the numbers: The UK's gene sequencing labs are at the forefront of global efforts to trace and identify every single case Coronavirus latest updates Coronavirus – see all our coverage All viruses change through random mutations. Through genomic sequencing we now know that the UK epidemic was seeded by more than 1,000 distinct variants from people returning from Italy, Spain and France in F
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As the Texas power crisis shows, our infrastructure is vulnerable to extreme weather
On Valentine's Day, a rare burst of Arctic air spread across the central US and into Texas, dropping temperatures there into the single digits and nearly causing the state's power grid to collapse. A state known for its abundant energy resources saw widespread failures of natural-gas and electricity systems that left more than four million Texans without power for days. The proximate cause of Tex
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'There is no bomb': what I learned taking a polygraph test
As the UK government plans to extend the use of lie detectors to terrorism and domestic abuse, our science editor puts himself in the hot seat "Did you plant the bomb?" It's not a question I've been asked before but I'm comfortable enough denying it. Truth is – I didn't plant a bomb. I planted a pretend bomb – a shoebox filled with webcams and wires – and I'm relying on my physiology to share the
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Free rapid Covid tests available for all businesses in England; Tibetan leader Dalai Lama gets vaccine shot
Contradictory death figures in Russia; WHO warns against relaxing guard due to vaccines From Pfizer to Moderna, the companies making billions from vaccines EU indecision led Cyprus to allow in UK visitors, says minister Up to a million long Covid patients may need treatment after pandemic Nadiya Hussain urges British Bangladeshis to get Covid vaccine See all our coronavirus coverage 10.11am GMT E
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Study marks major milestone for Louisiana coastal plan
A nearly $2 billion plan to divert water and sediment from the Mississippi River to rebuild land in southeastern Louisiana—considered the cornerstone of the state's efforts to protect its rapidly eroding coast—has passed a major milestone with the publication of the long-awaited Army Corps of Engineers environmental impact study.
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Startup Creates Tiny Drill to Burrow Through Your Brain With Magnets
A startup called Bionaut Labs has an unusual plan for fighting brain tumors: injecting tiny metallic drills into your body and dragging them around with a powerful magnet, from outside the body. The microrobots are essentially millimeter-sized screws that can shuttle and administer drugs to precise targets, The Los Angeles Times reports . The tech would give doctors a way to deliver drugs without
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Trolls Are Spreading a Rumor That Elon Musk Is Dead
RIP Elon Let's get the obvious out of the way first: Elon Musk does not appear to be dead. But today, trolls on Twitter started flooding the social media network with made-up screenshots using the hashtag #RIPElon . Some screenshots showed faked headlines , including "Elon Musk reportedly dead at 49 following Tesla battery malfunction," or "Elon Musk is dead — what this means for the stock market
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Using a radical to break C-F bonds one at a time
A team of researchers from the University of Science and Technology of China and the University of California has found a way to use radicals to break C-F bonds one at a time when working with trifluoroacetamides and acetates. In their paper published in the journal Science, the group describes how they found the right radical for such reactions and how their technique might be used in future appl
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Compression or strain—the material always expands
An international research team led by chemist Prof. Thomas Heine of TU Dresden has discovered a new two-dimensional material with unprecedented properties: regardless of whether it is strained or compressed, it always expands. This so-called half-auxetic behavior has not been observed before and is therefore very promising for the design of new applications, especially in nano-sensorics.
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DJI's FPV drone offers a first-person view of the sky
The FPV can sync to two headsets simultaneously. This couple only has one headset, though, so they have to take turns. (DJI/) One day, maybe drones will be large and powerful enough to tote humans into the sky. For now, though, first-person-view drones are about as close as we're going to get. Crafts like DJI's new FPV beam a live feed from their cameras directly to a head-mounted display to put
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Widespread wildfire as a proxy for resource strain
Fire is a natural part of ecosystems in the western United States, but the summer fire season has grown both longer and more intense in recent years. As the size of the area burned across the region has risen year after year, so too has the expense of fire management. Indeed, federal wildfire suppression costs more than tripled between the 1980s and today, from roughly $245 million per year to $1.
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'Magic sand' might help us understand the physics of granular matter
Sand is a fascinating material. It can flow and be poured like a liquid, but retains many of the properties of solids, clogging pipes or forming sand dunes. The behavior of collections of small particles like sand is known as granular physics, and is an immensely important field for the handling and transport of the wide range of granular materials out there like grains, rice, powders and the vast
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Scientists: Pedestrians Could Wear Devices to Protect Themselves From Self-Driving Cars
Car Culture The dream of self-driving cars arguably came toppling down in March 2018, when an experimental autonomous vehicle operated by Uber fatally struck a pedestrian in Arizona . Now, New Scientist reports , a team of scientists at Princeton has an idea to protect passersby from similar accidents in the future: they could wear radar-reflecting devices that make them ultra-visible to self-dri
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Sea otters maintain remnants of healthy kelp forest amid sea urchin barrens
Sea otters maintain the balance of kelp forest ecosystems by controlling populations of sea urchins, which are voracious kelp grazers. Since 2014, however, California's kelp forests have declined dramatically, and vast areas of the coast where kelp once thrived are now 'urchin barrens,' the seafloor carpeted with purple sea urchins and little else. This has occurred even in Monterey Bay, which hos
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New mechanism found for generating giant vortices in quantum fluids of light
Anyone who has drained a bathtub or stirred cream into coffee has seen a vortex, a ubiquitous formation that appears when fluid circulates. But unlike water, fluids governed by the strange rules of quantum mechanics have a special restriction: as was first predicted in 1945 by future Nobel winner Lars Onsager, a vortex in a quantum fluid can only twist by whole-number units.
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