Science & Technology
Earlier this summer Google engineer James Damore posted a treatise about gender differences on an internal company message board and was subsequently fired. The memo ignited a firestorm of debate about sex discrimination in Silicon Valley; this followed months of reporting on accusations of harassment at Uber and elsewhere. Sex discrimination and harassment in tech, and in science more broadly, is a major reason why women leave the field.
Last August, Masahide Sasaki and his team instructed a satellite to shoot laser beams at a suburb of Tokyo. No, not like that. The laser beam, made of infrared light, was invisible to the human eye. By the time it had traveled through hundreds of miles of outer space and atmosphere, the light was harmless: It had spread out like a spotlight, about as wide as 10 soccer fields. Some of that light made its way into the end of a telescope, where it bounced off mirrors and flew through lenses and filters onto a photon-measuring detector.
In the early 1990s, Xerox Parc researchers showed off a futuristic concept they called the Digital Desk. It looked like any other metal workstation, aside from the unusual setup that hovered overhead. Two video cameras hung from a rig above the desk, capturing the every movement of the person sitting at it. Next to the cameras, a projector cast the glowing screen of a computer onto the furniture’s surface.
In the early hours of 1st July, the SES Satellite Control reestablished contact to AMC-9. SES and the satellite manufacturer Thales are working around the clock to evaluate the status and define the next steps.
Tracking information received on 29 June had suggested that at least two separate objects were located in the vicinity of AMC-9. Their source has still to be determined. The new piece of information was included by Thales and SES in their investigations.
The rise and fall of FireWire—IEEE 1394, an interface standard boasting high-speed communications and isochronous real-time data transfer—is one of the most tragic tales in the history of computer technology. The standard was forged in the fires of collaboration. A joint effort from several competitors including Apple, IBM, and Sony, FireWire was a triumph of design for the greater good. It represented a unified standard across the whole industry, one serial bus to rule them all.
A team of astronomers working with Kepler Space telescope has found 219 new exoplanets. NASA released a list of 219 exoplanets discovered by astronomers over a period of four years using Kepler Space Telescope. 10 exoplanets among the latest list are in the ‘Goldilocks’ zone and their size is comparable to that of our planet Earth. These planets can support water in liquid form on their surface as they orbit at a suitable distance from their host star. Presence of water in liquid form is one of the main conditions for any exoplanet to support life.
When Urho Konttori handed me the VR headset, I almost laughed. The founder and CEO of some Finnish company I'd never heard of had just told me he and his team of 19 people had managed to leapfrog virtual reality 20 years into the future—and he gives me an Oculus Rift? "It's just the housing," he said. "We added some things inside." Fine, I thought. You've seen plenty of demos where the reality didn't match the hype. Just do it, then you can go back to the office. So I put the headset on.
Stroke patients who learned to use their minds to open and close a device fitted over their paralyzed hands gained some control over their hands, according to a new study from Washington University School of Medicine in St. Louis.
By mentally controlling the device with the help of a brain-computer interface, participants trained the uninjured parts of their brains to take over functions previously performed by injured areas of the brain, the researchers said.
Fitness trackers didn't always monitor sleep, but the feature is now a sought-after staple in most devices, as sleep is just as important as exercise to a healthy lifestyle. Most wristbands monitor sleep now, and there are even specialized devices that go on your head or bedside table that can also keep track of how long and how well you sleep each night.
Famous physicist Albert Einstein, assassinated Japanese prime-minister Hisashi Hamaguchi, and English engineer Charles Babbage all have at least one thing in common; pickled brains – all cut out of their skulls and preserved after their deaths so researchers could study their genius.
The brain of 17th century French philosopher René Descartes is now dust, but it hasn't stopped researchers from scanning the inside of his skull to learn more about his grey matter - which it turns out is remarkably normal, except for a slight bulge at the front.