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Sep 16, 2019

How factory farming destroys our microbiomes

Posted by in category: food

Good bacteria are our friends. We need to protect them.

Sep 16, 2019

Astronomers Detect the Most Massive Neutron Star Yet

Posted by in category: space

Astronomers have discovered the most massive example yet of the dead stars known as neutron stars, one almost too massive to exist, a new study finds.

Sep 16, 2019

Gene-Hacking Mosquitoes to Be Infertile Backfired Spectacularly

Posted by in categories: biotech/medical, genetics

On its surface, the plan was simple: gene-hack mosquitoes so their offspring immediately die, mix them with disease-spreading bugs in the wild, and watch the population drop off. Unfortunately, that didn’t quite pan out.

The genetically-altered mosquitoes did mix with the wild population, and for a brief period the number of mosquitoes in Jacobino, Brazil did plummet, according to research published in Nature Scientific Reports last week. But 18 months later the population bounced right back up, New Atlas reports — and even worse, the new genetic hybrids may be even more resilient to future attempts to quell their numbers.

Sep 16, 2019

Einstein’s black holes are not the black holes we see in reality

Posted by in categories: cosmology, physics

Field notes from space-time | We’re only just grasping how cosmic black holes and Einstein’s theories relate – and that deepens our sense of wonder, says Chanda Prescod-Weinstein.

Sep 16, 2019

Johns Hopkins Breakthrough Opens the Door for Stem Cell Transplants to Repair the Brain

Posted by in categories: biotech/medical, neuroscience

Transplanted brain stem cells survive without anti-rejection drugs in mice. By exploiting a feature of the immune system, researchers open the door for stem cell transplants to repair the brain.

In experiments in mice, Johns Hopkins Medicine researchers say they have developed a way to successfully transplant certain protective brain cells without the need for lifelong anti-rejection drugs.

A report on the research, published today (September 16, 2019) in the journal Brain, details the new approach, which selectively circumvents the immune response against foreign cells, allowing transplanted cells to survive, thrive and protect brain tissue long after stopping immune-suppressing drugs.

Sep 16, 2019

Memes That Kill: The Future Of Information Warfare

Posted by in categories: futurism, military

These need to be banned like the European union did.


Memes and social networks have become weaponized, while many governments seem ill-equipped to understand the new reality of information warfare. How will we fight state-sponsored disinformation and propaganda in the future?

Sep 16, 2019

Viewpoint: Surfing on a Wave of Quantum Chaos

Posted by in categories: climatology, particle physics, quantum physics

A model based on Brownian motion describes the tsunami-like propagation of chaotic behavior in a system of quantum particles.

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In daily life, “chaos” describes anything messy. In physics, the term has a more specific meaning: It refers to systems that, while subject to deterministic laws, are totally unpredictable because of an exponential sensitivity to initial conditions—think of the butterfly flapping its wings and causing a distant tornado. But how does the chaos observed in the classical, macroscopic world emerge from the quantum-mechanical laws that govern the microscopic world? A recently proposed explanation invokes quantum “information scrambling” [1, 3], in which information gets rapidly dispersed into quantum correlations among the particles of a system. This scrambling is a memory-loss mechanism that can cause the unpredictability of chaos. Developing a theory that fully describes information scrambling remains, however, a daunting task.

Sep 16, 2019

Was SHA-256 cracked? Don’t buy into retraction!

Posted by in categories: bitcoin, cryptocurrencies, encryption, government, hacking, internet, mathematics, military, privacy, security, software

SHA-256 is a one way hashing algorithm. Cracking it would have tectonic implications for consumers, business and all aspects of government including the military.

It’s not the purpose of this post to explain encryption, AES or SHA-256, but here is a brief description of SHA-256. Normally, I place reference links in-line or at the end of a post. But let’s get this out of the way up front:

One day after Treadwell Stanton DuPont claimed that a secret project cracked SHA-256 more than one year ago, they back-tracked. Rescinding the original claim, they announced that an equipment flaw caused them to incorrectly conclude that they had algorithmically cracked SHA-256.

All sectors can still sleep quietly tonight,” said CEO Mike Wallace. “Preliminary results in this cryptanalytic research led us to believe we were successful, but this flaw finally proved otherwise.

Continue reading “Was SHA-256 cracked? Don’t buy into retraction!” »

Sep 16, 2019

Design Devices to Help Astronauts Eat: Lunch in Outer Space!

Posted by in categories: engineering, food, space

Summary In this open-ended design/build project, students learn about the unique challenges astronauts face while eating in outer space. They explore different food choices and food packaging, learning about the seven different forms of food that are available to astronauts. Students learn about the steps of the engineering design process, and then, as if they are NASA engineering teams, they design and build original model devices to help astronauts eat in a microgravity environment—their own creative devices for food storage and meal preparation. A guiding design worksheet is provided in English and Spanish.

Sep 16, 2019

Artificial Intelligence Confronts a ‘Reproducibility’ Crisis

Posted by in category: robotics/AI

Machine-learning systems are black boxes even to the researchers that build them. That makes it hard for others to assess the results.

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