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Not the Red Planet but Utah, one of the more Mars-like areas on Earth.

Mars is the Next Step for Humanity – We Must Take It

February 18, 2015 9:40 am | by Ashley Dove-Jay, University of Bristol | Articles | Comments

Elon Musk has built a US$12 billion company in an endeavour to pave the way to Mars for humanity. He insists that Mars is a “long-term insurance policy” for “the light of consciousness” in the face of climate change, extinction events, and our recklessness with technology. On the other hand, astronaut Chris Hadfield is sceptical: “Humanity is not going extinct,” he told me.

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id the National Security Agency plant spyware deep in the hard drives of thousands of computers used by foreign governments, banks and other surveillance targets around the world?  A new report from Russian cybersecurity firm Kaspersky Lab said its resear

Cyber Espionage: Seagate, Western Digital, Toshiba, IBM Products Reported Compromised

February 18, 2015 9:36 am | by Brandon Bailey, AP Technology Writer | News | Comments

Did the National Security Agency plant spyware deep in the hard drives of thousands of computers used by foreign governments, banks and other surveillance targets around the world? A new report from Russian cybersecurity firm Kaspersky Lab said its researchers identified a new family of malicious programs or worms that infected computers in multiple countries, primarily overseas.

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Rotifer showing mouth interior and heart-shaped corona -- Courtesy of Nikon Small World

1st Place Winner: Rotifer Showing Mouth Interior and Heart-shaped Corona

February 17, 2015 3:30 pm | News | Comments

This 40x photo of a rotifer shows the mouth interior and heart-shaped corona. It won 1st Place in the 2014 Nikon Small World Photomicrophotography Competition, which recognizes excellence in photography with the optical microscope, and was taken using differential interference contrast.

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A message-carrying "golden record" that NASA's Voyager probe carries, a 12-inch gold-plated copper disk containing sounds and images selected to portray the diversity of life and culture on Earth. (AP Photo/NASA)

Should we call the Cosmos Seeking ET? Hawking, Brin think It's Crazy

February 17, 2015 3:19 pm | by Seth Borenstein, AP Science Writer | News | Comments

Astronomers have their own version of the single person's dilemma: Do you wait by the phone for a call? Or do you make the call yourself and risk getting shot down? Instead of love, of course, astronomers are looking for alien life and, for decades, they have sat by their telescopes waiting to hear from E.T. It didn't happen. Now, some want to beam messages out into the void and invite the closest few thousand worlds to chat or even visit.

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A computer simulation explores the impact of measles outbreaks in cities across the U.S. Users can see how an outbreak would play out if their city had high or low vaccination rates.

Simulation Brings Facts to Measles Outbreak and Vaccination Debate

February 17, 2015 2:28 pm | by University of Pittsburgh | News | Comments

To bring facts and clarity to the public debate about immunization in light of the recent measles outbreak, the University of Pittsburgh Graduate School of Public Health unveiled a computer simulation that explores the impact of measles outbreaks in cities across the U.S. Users can see how an outbreak would play out if their city had high or low vaccination rates.

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Original Caption Released with Image: These six narrow-angle color images were made from the first ever 'portrait' of the solar system taken by Voyager 1, which was more than 4 billion miles from Earth and about 32 degrees above the ecliptic. The spacecra

Pale Blue Dot Images Turn 25

February 17, 2015 2:21 pm | by NASA | News | Comments

Valentine's Day is special for NASA's Voyager mission. It was on February 14, 1990, that the Voyager 1 spacecraft looked back at our solar system and snapped the first-ever pictures of the planets from its perch at that time beyond Neptune. This "family portrait" captures Neptune, Uranus, Saturn, Jupiter, Earth and Venus from Voyager 1's unique vantage point.

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Apple CEO Tim Cook, right, watches as President Barack Obama speaks during a summit on cybersecurity and consumer protection at Stanford University in Palo Alto, CA. (AP Photo/Evan Vucci)

Obama calls on Silicon Valley to help thwart Cyber Attacks

February 17, 2015 2:15 pm | by Darlene Superville and Martha Mendoza, Associated Press | News | Comments

Cyberspace is the new "Wild West," President Barack Obama said, with everyone looking to the government to be the sheriff. But he told the private sector it must do more to stop cyber attacks aimed at the U.S. every day. Obama signed an executive order aimed at making it easier for private firms to have access to classified information about cyber attacks.

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3-D marine seascapes are zoned using statistical analysis to identify distinct geomorphological terrains.

Biodiversity Hotspots found by Mapping Seascapes in the Deep Ocean

February 17, 2015 2:05 pm | by National Oceanography Centre | News | Comments

Researchers have developed a new, automated method for classifying hundreds of kilometers of the deep sea floor, in a way that is more cost efficient, quicker and more objective than previously possible, estimating geographic distribution of life on the sea floor using a combination of submarine mapping technology, statistics and a landscape ecology technique called Niche Theory.

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Las Vegas and Lake Mead - Courtesy of USGS/ESA

Las Vegas and Lake Mead

February 13, 2015 3:51 pm | by ESA | News | Comments

This image from the Landsat-8 satellite acquired on September 23, 2014, brings us over the southwest United States: Nevada and Arizona. Las Vegas with its grid-like urban plan is visible near the center. Sitting in a basin of the Mojave Desert, the city is surrounded by a number of mountain ranges.

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NASA scientists used tree rings to understand past droughts and climate models incorporating soil moisture data to estimate future drought risk in the 21st century.

Unprecedented Megadroughts Likely for Western US: Driest Period in 1,000 Years

February 13, 2015 3:47 pm | by Earth Institute at Columbia University | News | Comments

During the second half of the 21st century, the U.S. Southwest and Great Plains will face persistent drought worse than anything seen in times ancient or modern, with the drying conditions “driven primarily” by human-induced global warming, a new study predicts. The research says the drying would surpass in severity any of the decades-long “megadroughts” that occurred much earlier during the past 1,000 years.

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In the search for ways to store data permanently, ETH researchers have been inspired by fossils. Courtesy of Philipp Stössel/ETH Zurich

Data Storage for Eternity: Encapsulated DNA-encoded Information Expected to Survive a Million Years

February 13, 2015 3:36 pm | by Angelika Jacobs, ETH Zurich | News | Comments

How can we preserve our knowledge today for the next millennia? Researchers have found a way to store information in the form of DNA, preserving it for nearly an eternity. As encapsulation in silica is roughly comparable to that in fossilized bones, researchers could draw on prehistoric information about long-term stability and calculate a prognosis: through storage in low temperatures, DNA-encoded information can survive.

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©Classical and Quantum Gravity, 2015. Reproduced by permission of IOP Publishing

Code from Interstellar Movie Leads to new Spinning Black Hole Discoveries

February 13, 2015 3:25 pm | by IOP Institute of Physics | News | Comments

The team responsible for the Oscar-nominated visual effects at the center of Christopher Nolan’s epic, Interstellar, have turned science fiction into science fact by providing new insights into the powerful effects of black holes. The team describes innovative computer code used to generate the film’s iconic images of the wormhole, black hole and various celestial objects, and explains how the code has led them to new science discoveries.

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Val Fitch and his Princeton colleague James Cronin received the Nobel Prize in physics in 1980 for high-energy experiments conducted in 1964 that overturned fundamental assumptions about symmetries and invariances that are characteristic of the laws of ph

Nobel Laureate and Physicist Val Fitch dies at 91

February 13, 2015 3:06 pm | by Princeton University | News | Comments

A towering figure in physics who helped shape our understanding of the universe, Nobel laureate Val Logsdon Fitch died peacefully February 5, 2015. He was 91. Known for foundational contributions to the standard model of particle physics, Fitch is remembered for his modesty and his kindness as well as for his experiments and insight into the fundamental nature of matter.

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Tim Cutts is Head of Scientific Computing at Wellcome Trust Sanger Institute

Modern DNA Sequencing Requires a Modern Day Approach

February 13, 2015 2:27 pm | by Tim Cutts, Wellcome Trust Sanger Institute | Blogs | Comments

The sequencing machines that run today produce data several orders of magnitude faster than the machines used in the Human Genome Project. We at the Wellcome Trust Sanger Institute currently produce more sequences in one hour than we did in our first 10 years of operation. A great deal of computational resource is then needed to process that data.

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The IoT concept is much broader today, with the possibility of networking national and even international infrastructure for improved transport, weather forecasting, earthquake prediction and response, disease tracking and control and many other applicati

Internet of Things Reality Check: Obstacles may limit a Connected World

February 13, 2015 11:31 am | by Inderscience | News | Comments

Connecting different kinds of devices, not just computers and communications devices, to the Internet could lead to new ways of working with a wide range of machinery, sensors, domestic and other appliances. Researchers suggest that we are on the verge of another technological revolution, but practicalities and legal obstacles may stymie the development of the so-called Internet of Things (IoT) if they are not addressed quickly.

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