• This February Smashed Temperature Records Around The Globe

    Global Temperature Records Tumble

    Things are heating up, and not in a good way. This past February was the hottest February on record. According to a new report released by NOAA, temperatures around the world were 2.18 degrees ... More >
  • Google Will Sell Boston Dynamics, Makers of Robotic Creatures

    Google To Sell Robot R&D Lab

    Dystopian wobbly robots are not what Google was searching for. As reported today by Bloomberg, Google is selling Boston Dynamics, makers of such indelible robots as dog-mimicking BigSpot; the ... More >
  • Playstation VR Vs. Oculus Rift Vs. HTC Vive: Here's How They Stack Up

    VR: The New Platform Wars

    Sony announced today at GDC 2016 in California that the Playstation VR will cost $399 and release in October 2016. Now that the three major virtual reality headset makers have finalized consumer ... More >
  • Inflatable Addition To The Space Station Will Launch In April

    The ISS Gets an Inflatable Module

    The first astronauts on Mars probably won't live in a tin can like the International Space Station. Big, heavy structures are expensive to launch, and aren't great at protecting against the ... More >
  • Why Did the US Air Force Play with Cats in Space?

    Why Did the US Air Force Play with Cats in Space?

    In 1947, the Air Force played with kittens in microgravity. In October of 1962, the same lab published a report titled “Weightless Man: Self-Rotation Techniques.” Among other research, ... More >
Kelsey D. Atherton
at 10:09 AM May 5 2016
DARPA

We haven't even begun to see the skies of future wars. Since aerial combat first evolved in World War I, it's taken on a familiar form: scouts that find targets, fighters that attack other planes, and big heavy bombers that unload hell onto the ground below. Despite a century of improvement, it is roughly the same now, with some more specialized aircraft. The wars of the future, though, are going to have a lot more in the sky. This week, at the Association for Unmanned Vehicle Systems International Xponential conference in New Orleans, an Air Force official suggested that in addition to fighters and bombers, we can expect thousands of smaller drones to join the battle.

Kelsey D. Atherton
at 10:09 AM May 5 2016
Screenshot by author, from YouTube
Drones // 

The Alaskan Way Viaduct was a 60-year-old elevated two-layer highway in Seattle that couldn't handle earthquakes. To replace it, the Washington State Department of Transportation is digging a 2-mile long tunnel instead. The work began in 2013, and as any major construction project is likely to, it's hit a few snags. To show off the progress before drilling resumes, the Department of Transportation flew a drone through the tunnel between shifts:

Kelsey D. Atherton
at 10:09 AM May 5 2016
Kevin Clifford, Drone America
Drones // 

Not all drones are battle-born. The Nevadan “Sandoval Silver State Seeder” isn't made for war. No, the fixed-wing drone is built to fight a different foe: drought.

Kelsey D. Atherton
at 10:09 AM May 5 2016
Adrian Pingstone, via Wikimedia Commons

Last month, a small plane crashed near Anchorage, Alaska, killing all four occupants. After an investigation, the culprit was discovered: an immature bald eagle.

Mary Beth Griggs
at 10:09 AM May 5 2016
NASA
Space // 

Large-scale impacts usually result in mass extinctions instead of new life, but evidence is mounting that comet impacts at least had the potential to midwife along early life on Earth.

Mary Beth Griggs
at 10:09 AM May 5 2016
Nature // 

Maine isn't just home to blueberries and lobsters. It also has thriving coral gardens just off the coast, which NOAA Fisheries shows off in this new video.

Dave Gershgorn
at 10:09 AM May 5 2016
UNBC-McMaster

One of the most poignant indicators of needing assistance is a physical showing of pain. A team from University of Oulu in Finland has published a technical report that claims the ability to recognize when someone is in pain. By training their algorithm on videos of more than 120 people in pain, the researchers were able to automatically identify pain on a 16-level scale.

Claire Maldarelli
at 10:09 AM May 5 2016
Sheikh Zayed Institute for Pediatric Surgical Innovation
Robots // 

In recent years, robots have steadily crept their way into the operating room, helping to perform procedures as humans direct their movements. Robotic devices in surgery have a lot of potential benefits; they can help reduce error rates and increase the efficiency of the surgeries. But developing a robotic device that can perform the surgery completely on its own has been challenging, especially for surgeries that involve soft tissue, where the dexterity of the surgeon's hands are vital.

Carl Franzen
at 10:09 AM May 5 2016
Science // 

Twenty seconds. That's how far into this short teaser for Shadows In The Grass, a new indie sci-fi short film currently in production, that it took to win me over. Just look at the design of the futuristic space station and tell me it doesn't evoke Don Davis's awe-inspiring 1970s Toroidal space colony art for NASA, Kubrick's 2001, or maybe even the newer dystopian TV series The 100 (in a good way).

Kristen Hall-Geisler
at 10:09 AM May 5 2016
LeEco
Cars // 

LeEco has a hand in just about everything. The company has been called “the Netflix of China” for its streaming video service (it used be called LeTV), but it also makes mobile phones and now an autonomous electric car. LeSEE, which stands for "Super Electric Ecosystem," debuted at the Beijing Auto Show in April.

Grennan Milliken
at 10:09 AM May 5 2016
Peter Stevens via Flickr
Nature // 

Scarface is dead. Not the ruthless drug kingpin of pop culture fame, but the beloved grizzly of Yellowstone, who was a favorite among parkgoers. The aged bruin—he was 25 years old—was illegally shot by a hunter just outside the park boundary near Gardiner, Montana late last year. Grizzly bears are protected under the Endangered Species Act (ESA) and are off limits to hunting.

Sarah Fecht
at 10:09 AM May 5 2016
Ironhead

Astronauts who ride with SpaceX will apparently be riding in style. An interview at Bleep magazine has revealed that Jose Fernandez, who designed superhero costumes for Batman vs Superman, Captain America: Civil War, and other blockbusters, designed SpaceX's space suits as well.

Xavier Harding
at 10:09 AM May 5 2016
Twitter / Hulu
Gadgets // 

Hulu has always been the easiest way for AMERICANS who opt out of cable subscriptions to watch this season's TV shows, from numerous channels -- with one large drawback. They have to wait until the day after a show is originally aired to view it. Poor dears. Anyway, apparently even THAT is getting fixed...

Sarah Fecht
at 10:09 AM May 5 2016
Army Medicine via Flickr CC By 2.0

More than 250,000 Americans die every year due to medical errors, according to an estimate published this week in the British Medical Journal.

Xavier Harding
at 12:05 PM May 4 2016
Google

Cardboard is convenient from the perspective of cost and usability, but is lacking in processing power, a method of interacting within the virtual world (save for one button on the side) or even an option to strap the headset to your head like competing VR helmets. But that may soon change.

 
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