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NASA

NASA's New Bag Turns Urine Into Sports Drink 182

Posted by samzenpus
from the I'm-afraid-that's-not-lemon-flavored-dave dept.
An anonymous reader writes "NASA's Atlantis shuttle is set to launch this Friday, and its crew will be testing an innovative device that can recycle human urine into a sugary sports drink. The bag uses forward osmosis technology and features a semi-permeable membrane capable of isolating water from virtually any liquid. Recycling urine in this way has a significant effect on a ship's payload, and considering that a single pound adds $10,000 of cost, that slight weight difference can translate to serious savings." CT: I'm at Kennedy Space Center now, tweeting as @cmdrtaco. And I think I'll stay away from the sports drink.
Image

Old People Enjoy Reading Negative Stories About Young 122 Screenshot-sm

Posted by samzenpus
from the stupid-kids dept.
A study by Dr. Silvia Knobloch-Westerwick and co-author Matthias Hastall suggests that your grandma's self-esteem gets a boost when she hears about the stupid things young people do. "Living in a youth centered culture, they may appreciate a boost in self-esteem. That's why they prefer the negative stories about younger people, who are seen as having a higher status in our society," said Dr. Silvia Knobloch-Westerwick. From the article: "All the adults in the study were shown what they were led to believe was a test version of a new online news magazine. They were also given a limited time to look over either a negative and positive version of 10 pre-selected articles. Each story was also paired with a photograph depicting someone of either the younger or the older age group. The researchers found that older people were more likely to choose to read negative articles about those younger than themselves. They also tended to show less interest in articles about older people, whether negative or positive."
Cellphones

Owners Smash iPhones To Get Upgrades, Says Insurance Company 406

Posted by timothy
from the dog-ate-it dept.
markass530 writes "An iPhone insurance carrier says that four in six claims are suspicious, and is worse when a new model appears on the market. 'Supercover Insurance is alleging that many iPhone owners are deliberately smashing their devices and filing false claims in order to upgrade to the latest model. The gadget insurance company told Sky News Sunday that it saw a 50-percent rise in claims during the month Apple launched the latest version, the iPhone 3GS.'"
Music

Grateful Dead Percussionist Makes Music From Supernovas 57

Posted by kdawson
from the music-of-the-exploding-spheres dept.
At the "Cosmology At the Beach" conference earlier this month, Grammy-award winning percussionist Mickey Hart performed a composition inspired by the eruptions of supernovae. "Keith Jackson, a Berkeley Lab computer scientist who is also a musician, lent his talents to the project, starting with gathering data from astrophysicists like those at the Berkeley Lab’s Nearby Supernova Factory, which collects data from telescopes in space and on earth to quickly detect and analyze short-lived supernovas. 'If you think about it, it's all electromagnetic data — but with a very high frequency,' Jackson said of the raw data. "What we did is turn it into sound by slowing down the frequency and "stretching" it into an audio form. Both light and sound are all wave forms — just at different frequencies. Our goal was to turn the electromagnetic data into audio data while still preserving the science.'"
Medicine

Cola Consumption Can Lead To Muscle Problems 420

Posted by timothy
from the but-your-lifting-arm's-doing-fine dept.
wjousts writes "As I'm sure many Slashdot readers live almost exclusively on cola drinks, a new warning from doctors: 'Doctors have issued a warning about excessive cola consumption after noticing an increase in the number of patients suffering from muscle problems, according to the June issue of IJCP, the International Journal of Clinical Practice. ... 'Evidence is increasing to suggest that excessive cola consumption can also lead to hypokalaemia, in which the blood potassium levels fall, causing an adverse effect on vital muscle functions.' And sorry, diet colas aren't any better."
Censorship

Craigslist Fights Back, Sues SC Atty General 286

Posted by timothy
from the wouldn't-have-happened-to-a-nicer-guy dept.
FredMastro writes "Craigslist has now stepped past just asking for an apology. The Wall Street Journal and CNet report that Craigslist is fighting back. 'Craigslist said it has sued South Carolina Attorney General Henry McMaster, in the latest escalation of a battle over adult-oriented ads on the company's site. Jim Buckmaster, Craigslist's chief executive, said in a blog post that the company filed its suit in federal court in South Carolina. ...'" Unfortunately, the WSJ's piece requires a subscription, but reader Locke2005 adds a link to coverage in the San Jose Business Journal.
Movies

Special Effects Lessons From JJ Abrams' Star Trek 461

Posted by timothy
from the know-where-the-release-valves-are dept.
brumgrunt writes "JJ Abram's hugely successful — on many levels — reboot of Star Trek has, for Den Of Geek, brought to the fore a lesson about special effects that many movie makers have been missing. Surely it's time now that special effects were actually used properly?" (The new film is not without some goofs, though only a few of the ones listed by Movie Mistakes' nitpickers are sciency.)
Power

Energy Secretary Chu Endorses "Clean Coal" 464

Posted by timothy
from the was-then-is-now dept.
DesScorp writes "The Wall Street Journal is reporting that Energy Secretary Steven Chu is endorsing 'clean coal' technology and research, and is taking a pragmatic approach to coal as an energy supply. '"It absolutely is worthwhile to invest in carbon capture and storage because we are not in a vacuum," Mr. Chu told reporters Tuesday following an appearance at an Energy Information Administration conference. "Even if the United States or Europe turns its back on coal, India and China will not," he said. Mr. Chu added that "quite frankly I doubt if the United States will turn its back on coal. We are generating over 50% of our electrical energy from coal."' The United States has the world's largest reserves of coal. Secretary Chu has reversed his positions on coal and nuclear power, previously opposing them, and once calling coal 'My worst nightmare.'"
NASA

NASA Taking Ethernet Into Deeper Space 77

Posted by CmdrTaco
from the once-i-took-it-into-my-bathroom dept.
coondoggie writes "While Ethernet technology has gone places no one would have envisioned 36 years ago, NASA today signed an agreement with a German Ethernet vendor to build highly fault-tolerant networks for space-based applications. TTTech builds a set of time-triggered services called TTEthernet that is implemented on top of standard IEEE802.3 Ethernet. Its technology is designed to enable design of synchronous, highly dependable embedded computing and networking, capable of tolerating multiple faults, the company said."
Television

Confusion Reigns As Analog TV Begins Shutdown 434

Posted by kdawson
from the how-not-to-do-it dept.
As TV stations across the country switch off their analog signals, uncertainty reigns. Some 691 stations will have converted to digital broadcasting by midnight tonight (some interpreted the mandate as going digital by Feb. 17, not during Feb. 17, and shut down yesterday). This represents about a third of TV broadcasters nationwide. No one can say how many of the estimated 5.8 million households unready for the transition are in areas served by the stations that are switching now. The FCC added to the uncertainty by imposing extra conditions, making it unclear until last Friday exactly which stations would be switching at the beginning of the transition period. The article quotes a former analyst at Barclays Capital who said the whole process has been "botched politically."

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