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Submission + - High-skill immigration and the new Senate leadership (sciencemag.org)

Jim_Austin writes: The first hearing on high-skill immigration under the new Senate leadership had a very different tone from what we've gotten used to. Instead of focusing on the "skills gap" and corporations' need for an expanded labor pool, last week's hearing "focused largely on the practice of replacing existing, often longstanding, employees with cheaper guest workers and preferentially hiring guest workers over Americans under the H-1B visa program and the Optional Practical Training (OPT) program, which permits work on extended student visas."

Submission + - Study predicts 9% drop in salaries of new CS grads this year (sciencemag.org)

Jim_Austin writes: The first report on the class of 2015 from the respected National Association of Colleges and Employers (NACE), which conducts surveys of employers’ hiring intentions throughout the year, projects a 9% drop in the salaries of new computer science bachelor's degree graduates, from $67,300 in 2014 to $61,287 this year.

Submission + - Federal Judge: U.S. Workers Can Sue Over Optional Practical Training (OPT) (sciencemag.org)

Jim_Austin writes: A U.S. Federal judge has allowed a lawsuit against the U.S. Department of Homeland Security by an organization representing three U.S. tech workers who maintain they could not find jobs because of the Bush-era extension of the Optional Practical Training (OPT) program (for foreign students studying in the United States) from 12 to 29 months. Some jobs are advertised as OPT positions, leading to charges that they discriminate against American workers. President Obama's recent executive action includes an unspecified extension and expansion of the OPT program, so it, too, could be affected by the judges ruling and the lawsuit.

Submission + - 3D Printed Nano Battery, The Smallest And Most Efficient Yet (gadgetzz.com)

An anonymous reader writes: Scientists have successfully 3D printed a Lithium-ion battery about the size of a grain of sand. This is truly amazing, with this kind of technology we can make batteries with many times the capacity of current day batteries, on the same size, or even smaller. It also has the potential to revolutionize nanotechnology.
Usually with devices on this scale the batteries are several times larger than the device itself. It is the perfect companion for all the nano devices being developed these days.

This type of microbattery will be incredibly useful for example in the field of medicine.

The scientists realized they could pack more energy if they could create stacks of tightly interlaced, ultrathin electrodes, the electrodes are smaller than the width of a human hair.

“Not only did we demonstrate for the first time that we can 3-D-print a battery, we demonstrated it in the most rigorous way,” said Jennifer Lewis, Ph.D., senior author of the study.

Submission + - Robert Langer: Creating things that could change the world (sciencemag.org)

Jim_Austin writes: Robert S. Langer has more than 1000 patents, licensed to more than 300 companies. His academic articles have more than 163,000 citations, for an h-index of 203. He talks about science, graduate education in the sciences, entrepreneurship, and the connections among them.

Submission + - Nothing but networking (sciencemag.org)

Jim_Austin writes: Conventional wisdom these days says that one of the keys to a successful career is effective networking. But scientist/comedian Adam Ruben doesn't like networking; he thinks it "just feels icky."

Submission + - Most Common Job for New UK Biology Grads? Retail and Food Service (sciencemag.org)

Jim_Austin writes: For recent UK first-degree (bachelor's) recipients, the most common job varies widely depending on the field of your degree, a new study shows. Chemists most often take jobs as "science professionals." For CS/IT grads--and also physics majors--"IT professional" is the most common career outcome. But for biology graduates--and also for majors in "physical and geographical sciences"--the most common employment sector is “retail, catering, waiting and bar staff."

Submission + - Statistician Creates Mathematical Model to Predict The Future of Game of Thrones

KentuckyFC writes: One way of predicting the future is to study data about events in the past and build a statistical model that generates the same pattern of data. Statisticians can then use the model to generate data about the future. Now one statistician has taken this art to new heights by predicting the content of the soon-to-be published novels in the Song of Ice and Fire series by George R R Martin. The existing five novels are the basis of the hit TV series Game of Thrones. Each chapter in the existing books is told from the point of view of one of the characters. So far, 24 characters have starred in this way. The statistical approach uses the distribution of characters in chapters in the first five books to predict the distribution in the forthcoming novels. The results suggest that several characters will not appear at all and also throw light on whether one important character is dead or not, following an ambiguous story line in the existing novels. However, the model also serves to highlight the shortcomings of purely statistical approaches. For example, it does not 'know' that characters who have already been killed off are unlikely to appear in future chapters. Neither does it allow for new characters that might appear. Nevertheless, this statistical approach to literature could introduce the process of mathematical modelling to more people than any textbook.

Submission + - The long harm of the law (sciencemag.org)

An anonymous reader writes: Why in god's name would a scientist EVER want to become a lawyer? The latest humor from scientist-comedian Adam Ruben

Submission + - College Majors and the Jobs They Lead To (sciencemag.org)

Jim_Austin writes: Late last week, the U.S. Census Bureau posted an excellent interactive infographic that connects college majors with the occupations people with those majors end up in--and vice versa. For example, it shows--to no one's surprise--that people with majors in computers, mathematics, and statistics end up working as computer workers about half the time, with significant numbers going on to work in math and statistics (and a few in other science fields). More surprising is that nearly half end up doing work unrelated to science, tech, engineering, etc. It works the other way, too; by mousing over the "computer worker" category you see that the largest chunk of computer workers come from computer, math, and statistics majors, with another large chunk coming from engineering. But significant numbers also come from several other majors.

Some of the insights are startling. Only about a fifth (to perhaps a fourth) of physical science majors end up working in any scientific or technical field, and fewer than 10% of physical science majors work in the physical sciences. And only about an eighth of all graduates in the broad category of biological, agricultural, and environmental scientists end up working in fields related to science, engineering, and technology.

Submission + - What's Your College Degree Worth? (sciencemag.org)

Jim_Austin writes: A recent study by economist Douglas Webber calculates the lifetime earnings premium of college degrees in various broad areas, accounting for selection bias--that is, for the fact that people who already are likely to do well are also more likely to go to college. These premiums are not small. Science Careers got exclusive access to major-specific data, and published an article that tells how much more you can expect to earn because you got that college degree--for engineering, physics, computer science, chemistry, and biology majors.

Submission + - Best Alternative Client for Outlook/M$ Cloud Mail 2

James-NSC writes: My company is switching from onprem mail to a hosted "Exchange Online". This requires Outlook 2013, however, O13 is a *really bad* mail client — particularly in it's search function. Worst case I'll use two clients, one for actually interacting with my email and Outlook to interact with it's services, but it would be super handy if there was a good client that also supports all of the various added "functionality" bundled with Outlook. As I'm sure I'm not the first to be subjected to the "everything is better, because Cloud!" line of IT executive reasoning, what have my fellow /.'rs used as a mailer in this setup?

Submission + - A New Book Debunks the STEM-Shortage Myth (sciencemag.org)

Jim_Austin writes: In an authoritative new book, Michael Teitelbaum takes on the current and recurrent myths of science/tech worker shortages, concluding that "the alarms about widespread shortages or shortfalls in the number of U.S. scientists and engineers are quite inconsistent with nearly all available evidence;" that "similar claims of the past were politically successful but resulted in a series of booms and busts that did harm to the U.S. science and engineering enterprise and made careers in these fields increasingly unattractive;" and that "the clear signs of malaise in the U.S. science and engineering workforce are structural in origin and cannot be cured simply by providing additional funding."

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