Follow Slashdot stories on Twitter


Forgot your password?
DEAL: For $25 - Add A Second Phone Number To Your Smartphone for life! Use promo code SLASHDOT25. Also, Slashdot's Facebook page has a chat bot now. Message it for stories and more. Check out the new SourceForge HTML5 Internet speed test! ×

Submission + - Icarus Interstellar is doing his second Starship Congress on September 4-6, 2015

mZHg writes: For the second time Icarus Interstellar is doing a Starship Congress to discuss technology progress related to space travel.

Drawing upon what made Starship Congress 2013 such a success—the combined interest in students and working space professionals in interacting with one another—we name Starship Congress 2015: Interstellar Hackathon.

A hackathon is an intentional community of like-minded individuals temporarily problem-solving together. Our own Interstellar Hackathon will be two days of intentional problem solving by people who love interstellar space science and the dream of building a starship.

Additionally, to make it more enticing and available for students, for the staging of Starship Congress we have chosen a university setting. This year's Starship Congress is being hosted at Drexel University in Philadelphia, PA. Besides its central location and top-rate reputation for cooperative education, Drexel University is also home to the first-ever student chapter of Icarus Interstellar.

You can help by supporting their kickstarter campaign.

Submission + - NASA astronauts will eat space lettuce for the first time today (

kkumar326 writes: NASA astronauts on the International Space Station will get their first taste of ‘space lettuce’ today, when they harvest a crop of red romaine lettuce that’s been cultivated over the past 33 days in the orbiting lab’s special Veggie plant growth system.
The lettuce, which has been grown from seeds planted by NASA astronaut Scott Kelly on July 8, will be cleaned using citric acid-based sanitising wipes before being divvied up between the Expedition 44 crew members for taste-testing. The astronauts will get one half, and the other half will be packed up, frozen, and shipped back to Earth for scientific analysis.

Submission + - White House Petition: Help us to keep religion outside school, sign! (

mZHg writes: There is a petition on which need Slashdot community support.

Since Darwin's groundbreaking theory of Evolution by Natural Selection, scientists all around the world have found monumental amounts of evidence in favor of the theory, now treated as scientific fact by 99.9% of all scientists.

However, even after 150 years after the establishment of evolution, some schools across the US are "teaching the controversy," including Creationism and Intelligent Design. Both of these so-called "theories" have no basis in scientific fact, and have absolutely zero evidence pointing towards these conjectures. These types of loopholes in our education are partially to blame for our dangerously low student performances in math and science.

Therefore, we petition the Obama Adminstration to ban the teachings of these conjectures that contradict Evolution.

Sign the petition!

Submission + - Do-it-yourself brain stimulation has scientists worried (

Freshly Exhumed writes: Dave Siever always fancied himself as something of a musician, but also realized he did not necessarily sing or play in perfect key. Then he strapped on the electrodes of a device made by his Edmonton company, and zapped his brain’s auditory cortex with a mild dose of electricity. The result, he claims, was a dramatic improvement in his ability to hear pitch, including the sour notes he produced himself. “Now I tune everything and I practise my singing over and over and over again, because I’m more sensitive to it.” Mr. Siever was not under the supervision of a doctor or psychologist, and nor is he one himself. He is part of an extraordinary trend that has amateur enthusiasts excited, and some scientists deeply nervous: do-it-yourself brain stimulation.The device he used delivers transcranial direct current stimulation (tDCS), a technology that researchers worldwide have used to produce a flood of intriguing, if preliminary, studies in recent years. They suggest tDCS can both treat diseases like depression and make healthy people’s minds work better. The devices are also simple, cheap to make and relatively safe, helping drive a burgeoning DIY movement.

Submission + - Star power within our grasp (

An anonymous reader writes: I'm wondering if slashdot is interested in covering the 30th Anniversary of the Joint European Torus (JET) which happens this month. If so, please join us for a look behind the scenes at the world’s largest magnetic fusion experiment — come and find out about the amazing achievements fusion has made and the challenges ahead in the quest to bring star power to Earth for cleaner energy.

Our celebration event, 30 years of JET — paving the way to ITER's take off, is at Culham Centre for Fusion Energy near Oxford in the UK on 25th June. The event will be a chance to see the facility with your own eyes and chat with scientists about controlling plasmas ten times hotter than the Sun. It will feature a tour of JET, interactive science demonstrations, and presentations by senior figures from the European Fusion Development Agreement, ITER and the European Commission.

Please let me know if you would like to join us, or register here: .

Best regards

Phil Dooley,
News and Education, Joint European Torus.

Submission + - Help humanity to go into deep space!

mZHg writes: The Icarus Interstellar non-profit organization, dedicated to achieving interstellar flight by 2100, has setup a kickstarter project to fund the first-ever starship congress summit of the world's interstellar space science organizations and advocates.

"Imagine collectively experiencing the progressive thoughts and unencumbered designs of the world's leading spacecraft designers, engineers, and astro-theorists. Picture for a moment, attending a forum where scientists, physicists, engineers, researchers, urban designers, representatives from international space programs and present-day commercial space operators, as well as popular and well-known interstellar speakers and space journalists share their visions for how the future of spaceflight and interstellar exploration is to unfold."

The Starship Congress, to be held August 15-18, 2013, at the Anatole Hilton Conference Center, Dallas, TX.

Comment Re:Looks like creationism... (Score 1) 272

> Do you even understand what it means to "calibrate"? Do you understand what it means that they have to consider things such as sample contamination and so on?
> An accurate measurement of the ratio of C12 to C14 atoms does not mean you have an accurate measurement of the age of the item, because you do not know the starting ratio, and you have not validated the assumption that decay rates stays constant over long periods of time.

You seriously think they don't know about that?

> Why did you use "almost surely"? Why not "definitely"? What uncertainty are you accounting for with that phrasing?

Since I am not a expert in that field, I can't affirm this with certainty, and since you are the one with doubt, you should be the one learning on the subject, you obviously lake the necessary knowledge to understand what you criticize.

> Because those values are estimated based on models and not experimentally verified

Most are experimentally verified, even if you stat the contrary.

> An experiment that verifies the accuracy of long term age estimates requires multiples of the time period in question. When it comes to millions to billions of years, we do not and have the millions and billions of years of data to validate the estimates. In short, they're unprovable claims until we've performed some million/billion year experiments. Inconveniently, those results are outside of our lifetimes.

No. This is not necessary to do it that way. We have tons of evidences and experimental data to backup those claims, but you obviously refuse to admit that. Do some research, try to understand how the age of the universe is calculated, how each 'tool' works, what data are used, how they are verified, what experiments have been done. I think you don't understand there is not on one way used to calculate the age, but multiple ways which all converge to the same value. And with advance in science, this value is more and more accurate.

Comment Re:Looks like creationism... (Score 1) 272

1. Carbon is one of many isotopes you can use for dating, some of them has short half-life which has been tested and proven. Even in your life time. The process itself is accurate, but a specific half-life can't give you age precision under that half-life.

2. Red shift is one tool which help us to measure the expansion of the universe, which help us to measure the age of the universe. This tool associated with many others allow us to do a pretty accurate measure. I was just pointing out to you other means of measure than radio-dating.

3. "Estimates are not verifications": this is why we give uncertainty range. The good value is almost surely in that range. At least all evidences and experiments point to it. Certainly not 6 000 years.. Actually, we have 'verified' that estimations, multiple times, refine its accuracy.

It's not because we use the word "estimation", the values are wrong or unknown.

Slashdot Top Deals

Like punning, programming is a play on words.