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Inside the Hunt for a Ghost Particle

posted onDecember 12, 2016
by l33tdawg

Even for a particle physicist, Janet Conrad thinks small. Early in her career, when her peers were fanning out in search of the top quark, now known to be the heaviest elementary particle, she broke ranks to seek out the neutrino, the lightest.

Google’s AI Reads Retinas to Prevent Blindness in Diabetics

posted onNovember 30, 2016
by l33tdawg

Google’s artificial intelligence can play the ancient game of Go better than any human. It can identify faces, recognize spoken words, and pull answers to your questions from the web. But the promise is that this same kind of technology will soon handle far more serious work than playing games and feeding smartphone apps. One day, it could help care for the human body.

Physicists Uncover Strange Numbers in Particle Collisions

posted onNovember 21, 2016
by l33tdawg

At the Large Hadron Collider in Geneva, physicists shoot protons around a 17-mile track and smash them together at nearly the speed of light. It’s one of the most finely tuned scientific experiments in the world, but when trying to make sense of the quantum debris, physicists begin with a strikingly simple tool called a Feynman diagram that’s not that different from how a child would depict the situation.

NASA realizes SLS and Orion are too expensive, opens door to competitors

posted onNovember 18, 2016
by l33tdawg

With a new presidential administration promising to review its human spaceflight activities, NASA on Thursday continued to signal a willingness to consider alternatives to its exploration systems—the Space Launch System rocket, Orion spacecraft, and related ground systems developed at Kennedy Space Center to support their launch later this decade and in the 2020s.

Increased smartphone screen-time associated with lower sleep quality

posted onNovember 10, 2016
by l33tdawg

Exposure to smartphone screens is associated with lower sleep quality, according to a study published November 9, 2016 in the open-access journal PLOS ONE by Matthew Christensen from the University of California, San Francisco, USA, and colleagues.

Smartphones are increasingly becoming part of everyday life, but questions remain about the effects of frequent use on sleep. Poor sleep is associated with health conditions such as obesity, diabetes and depression.

Hazardous chemicals discovered in flavored e-cigarette vapor

posted onNovember 10, 2016
by l33tdawg

Building on more than 30 years of air quality research in some of the most polluted urban environments on Earth, a team of atmospheric scientists at the Desert Research Institute (DRI) have turned their attention toward the growing e-cigarette industry and the unidentified effects of vaping on human health.

How Doctors Could One Day Use Your DNA to Cure You

posted onNovember 1, 2016
by l33tdawg

“I don’t mean to be morbid,” Eric Dishman told a friend as he was winding down his job at Intel. “But this may be the last time you see me.” Dishman, a longtime leader of the company’s health research division, was preparing to die. The kidney cancer he’d been diagnosed with in college had caught up to him two decades later. His kidneys had failed, and the chemo drug that kept him alive was incompatible with dialysis.

Genetic Architects Untwist DNA’s Turns With Crispr

posted onOctober 31, 2016
by l33tdawg

When scientists finished sequencing the human genome in 2003, many researchers focused their attention on decoding the long strings of As, Ts, Gs and Cs as the way to understanding the mysteries of human genetics. The genome, however, doesn’t appear in nature as a simple long line of letters. Unfurled, the genome stretches for nearly two meters, yet it folds itself in coils and loops to fit inside a nucleus less than 10 microns in diameter.

Elon Musk provides more details about how first Mars colonists will live

posted onOctober 24, 2016
by l33tdawg

When he delivered his Mars colonization presentation at the International Astronautical Conference in September, SpaceX founder Elon Musk spent a lot of time discussing the Interplanetary Transport System rocket and spacecraft, But he offered precious little information about what the firsts visitors' life on Mars would look like.