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+ - SpaceShipTwo flies again->

Submitted by schwit1
schwit1 (797399) writes "The competition heats up: For the first time in six months SpaceShipTwo completed a test flight today.

The article above is from NBC, which also has a deal with Virgin Galactic to televise the first commercial flight. It is thus in their interest to promote the spacecraft and company. The following two sentences from the article however clearly confirm every rumor we have heard about the ship in the past year, that they needed to replace or completely refit the engine and that the resulting thrust might not be enough to get the ship to 100 kilometers or 62 miles:

In January, SpaceShipTwo blasted off for a powered test and sailed through a follow-up glide flight, but then it went into the shop for rocket refitting. It’s expected to go through a series of glide flights and powered flights that eventually rise beyond the boundary of outer space (50 miles or 100 kilometers in altitude, depending on who’s counting).

Hopefully this test flight indicates that they have installed the new engine and are now beginning flight tests with equipment that will actually get the ship into space."
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+ - Quadriplegic Man Uses Thoughts To Move His Hand->

Submitted by Diggester
Diggester (2492316) writes "We have been hearing all about prosthetic organs for quite a while but what if we told you it’s possible to move your hands and fingers with the help of your thoughts? That’s exactly what Ohio State University and Battelle researchers have been able to achieve with their brain implant. Thanks to them, a quadriplegic man is now able to move his hands and fingers with his thoughts. Meet Ian Burkhart who is paralyzed and was a participant in the clinical trial Neurobridge conducted by the Ohio State University."
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Comment: What about Norway and Sweden? (Score 1) 96

Granted they're not turning the stuff into fuel, but they are generating electricity from their garbage (and they want yours, they're running out). It would be interesting to compare the carbon/pollution/energy profiles of the two approaches. Wonder if the Scandinavian way is cleaner?

+ - Mesothermy in Dinosaurs->

Submitted by Anonymous Coward
An anonymous reader writes "An article published today in Science ( points to the possibility that dinosaurs were mesotherms more akin to modern Tuna. Their internal temperature would have been warmer than their surrounding environment, conferring on them the ability to move more quickly than any ectotherm (“cold blooded” animal), but wouldn’t have been constant or as warm as any endoderm (“warm blooded” animal). Their energy use and thus their necessary food intake would have been greater than an ectotherm, but much less than an endotherm. In order to arrive at this possibility, bone growth rings in fossilized bone were used to establish growth rates and then compared to modern ectotherms and endotherms. Nature has a write up on this:"
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+ - Why cyclists should be able to roll through stop signs & ride through red li->

Submitted by Lasrick
Lasrick (2629253) writes "Joseph Stromberg at Vox makes a good case for changing traffic rules for bicyclists so that the 'Idaho stop' is legal. The Idaho stop allows cyclists to treat stop signs as yields and red lights as stop signs, and has created a safer ride for both cyclists and pedestrians. Oregon was considering a similar law in 2009, and they made a nice video illustrating the Idaho Stop that is embedded in this article."
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+ - The Strange Death of Comet Ison

Submitted by KentuckyFC
KentuckyFC (1144503) writes "Last year, astronomers announced that a small ball of ice and rock heading towards the inner Solar System could turn out to be the most eye-catching comet in living memory. They calculated that Comet Ison's orbit would take it behind the Sun but that it would then head towards Earth where it would put on a spectacular display of heavenly fireworks. Sure enough, Ison brightened dramatically as it headed Sunwards. But as astronomers watched on the evening of 28 November, the brightly flaring Ison moved behind the Sun but never emerged. The comet simply disappeared. Now a new analysis of the death of Ison suggests that the comet was doomed long before it reached the Sun. Images from several Sun-observing spacecraft that had a unique view of events, indicate that Ison exhausted its supply of water and other ice in the final flare-ups as it approached the Sun. The new study shows that all that was left in its last hours were a few hundred thousands pebbles glowing brightly as they vapourised in the Sun's heat. In fact, Comet Ison died in full view of the watching hordes of astronomers on Earth who did not realise what they were watching at the time."

+ - Video of GCHQ destroying laptop ..->

Submitted by Anonymous Coward
An anonymous reader writes "On Saturday 20 July 2013, in the basement of the Guardian's office in Kings Cross, London, watched by two GCHQ technicians, Guardian editors destroyed hard drives and memory cards on which encrypted files leaked by Edward Snowden had been stored. This is the first time footage of the event has been released"
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+ - Safeway Suspends Worker for SciFi Parody of His Firing

Submitted by theodp
theodp (442580) writes "After making light of a bad situation — Safeway's closing of its Chicagoland Dominick's grocery store chain and termination of 6,000 workers — with a satirical SciFi YouTube clip, Dominick's employee Steve Yamamoto found himself suspended just one day before the grocery chain closed up shop for good. "My store manager got a phone call that she had to suspend me," Yamamoto told NBC Chicago. "I was like, 'Are you serious?' It's crazy as it is. I'm just dumbfounded." Perhaps Safeway was concerned that viewers of Yamamoto's video might think that aliens, robots, and monsters did Dominick's in, although the Chicago Tribune suggests financial machinations as a more likely culprit: "By pulling the plug on Chicago [Dominick's], Safeway could not only satisfy [hedge fund] Jana, but also generate a $400 million to $450 million tax benefit.""

+ - The universe may be finite and bounded afterall.-> 1

Submitted by Anonymous Coward
An anonymous reader writes "The question is discussed whether the universe is finite or infinite, bounded or unbounded. In modern science it is presumed to unbounded and since the discovery of the accelerating universe, for which the Nobel Prize was awarded in 2011, that it is also infinite. However Hartnett has found that using the cosmology of Moshe Carmeli that the same equations that successfully fit the observational evidence in the cosmos can also be derived from a finite bounded universe. This means our location is space may indeed be special after all. The work was published in the International Journal of Theoretical Physics titled “A valid finite bounded expanding Carmelian universe without dark matter” (Int J Theor Phys (2013) 52:4360–4366)."
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+ - Antarctic Climate Research Expedition Trapped in Sea Ice

Submitted by Stinky Cheese Man
Stinky Cheese Man (548499) writes "An antarctic climate research expedition, led by climate researcher Chris Turney of the University of New South Wales, has become trapped in heavy ice near the coast of Antarctica. The captain has issued a distress call and three nearby icebreaker ships are on their way to the rescue. According to Turney's web site (, the purpose of the expedition is "to discover and communicate the environmental changes taking place in the south". Read the fine article at"

+ - How Ya Gonna Get 'Em Down on the UNIX Farm? 2

Submitted by theodp
theodp (442580) writes "In 1919, Nora Bayes sang, "How ya gonna keep 'em down on the farm after they've seen Paree?" In 2013, discussing User Culture Versus Programmer Culture, CS Prof Philip Guo poses a similar question, "How ya gonna get 'em down on UNIX after they've seen Spotify?" Convincing students from user culture to toss aside decades of advances in graphical user interfaces for a UNIX command line is a tough sell, Guo notes, and one that's made even more difficult when the instructors feel the advantages are self-evident. "Just waving their arms and shouting 'because, because UNIX!!!' isn't going to cut it," he advises. Guo's tips for success? "You need to gently introduce students to why these tools will eventually make them more productive in the long run," Guo suggests, "even though there is a steep learning curve at the outset. Start slow, be supportive along the way, and don't disparage the GUI-based tools that they are accustomed to using, no matter how limited you think those tools are. Bridge the two cultures.""

Comment: Defusing the Nuclear Threat (Score 1) 707

Martin Hellman at Stanford has made a consistent, logical, and compelling counter-argument to this for many years. Purely from a statistical point of view, the longer one waits, the higher the probability of a (possibly accidental) trigger.

To my mind, the assertion that nukes are in any way useful is short-sighted and likely a result of inexperience. The author (Keck) in the OP was a student a couple of years ago, whereas Hellman has had a long and distinguished career at Stanford and elsewhere.

I know who I'm going to listen to first.

Comment: Re:Not just ESO (Score 1) 82

Correct. The original two partner institutions were

Later, the National Astronomical Observatory of Japan joined the consortium, to provide the ALMA Compact Array and a second correlator, among other things.

It's sometimes a bit bewildering working in this multi-site environment, but it's mostly just amazing :)

Never trust a computer you can't repair yourself.