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tech & science Articles
The limitation with the life-time of batteries remains a big frustration for consumers, especially as our reliance upon electronic devices increases. Several projects are underway to make batteries last longer. We look at one of the latest ideas.

Op-Ed: Is Elon Musk's Mars colony viable? Yes, if seriously addressed

Elon Musk has gone against prevailing wisdom with a statement that a working Mars colony with large numbers of colonists. The current thinking is that the technical difficulties have to be solved first. That thinking is also pretty turgid and negative.

Google proposes framework to let governments access overseas data

Google has put forth a proposal to overhaul the laws surrounding the access of data held in overseas datacentres to aid criminal investigations. The company wants to pioneer a new legal framework that helps prosecutors while preserving personal privacy.

Top ten recent discoveries about Mars

NASA’s space probe MAVEN has been exploring the upper atmosphere of Mars since late 2013. In this time the probe has captured masses of information which has been sorted through by NASA scientists. We review the ten most interesting.

Airborne fungal toxins from wallpaper create indoor health risk

A new study suggests that wallpaper may contribute to "sick building syndrome." When toxins from fungi growing on wallpaper become airborne, they can create an indoor health risk.

Success with bioengineered human livers

Scientists working on the development of artificial human livers have shown some success by bioengineering human liver tissues. The livers were generated from healthy and usable human liver tissue from human pluripotent stem cells.

Will it be possible to erase 'bad' memories?

Will it be possible, at some future point, to eradicate 'bad' memories? Such as those associated with post-traumatic stress disorder? New study of snail neurons suggests memories that trigger anxiety can be erased.

Feds open new probe of nuclear lab after another safety violation

U.S. regulators on Friday said they are launching an investigation into the improper shipment of radioactive material from the Los Alamos National Laboratory (LANL) this week. This latest violation adds to a growing list of safety breaches.

German firm uses facial recognition to bring personalized ads

A German marketing company has started scanning the faces of waiting customers at checkout in supermarkets and post offices on a trial basis. The information is used to give personalized ads in adjacent screens targeting specific demographic groups.

Sentinel — Our eye in the sky monitoring the Larsen C ice shelf

The world has been holding its collective breath, waiting for the Larsen C ice shelf to calve what will be the biggest iceberg on record. But monitoring the progress of the crack in the ice sheet would not be possible without the help of technology.

Amazon customers are calling for payment via bitcoin 'ASAP'

Bitcoin has been soaring to new heights, and now folks on Change.org are calling on e-commerce juggernaut Amazon to accept the cryptocurrency as payment "ASAP."

New wasp species names in honor of David Bowie

The 'star dust' wasp is a new extinct species, and it has named after David Bowie's alter ego in honor of the British singer's contribution to popular culture.

IEA says nuclear power plants needed to help meet climate goals

A top energy agency is warning that the planned decommissioning of nuclear power plants in Europe and the United States by 2020 threatens global plans to cut carbon emissions unless more new nuclear plants are built or we expand the use of renewables.

The most exciting tech at Uber could be thrown into more turmoil

The crux of the issue for the new CEO is this: does Uber need to own its own self-driving technology, as Kalanick believed, or can it license or strike a partnership for it?

New orbiters for Europe's Galileo satnav system

The European Space Agency signed a contract with a German-British consortium Thursday to build eight more satellites for its Galileo satnav system, an alternative to America's GPS, the agency said Thursday.

Todoist maker launches Twist, a 'calmer' version of Slack

Doist, the company behind the highly popular Todoist task manager app, has launched a new team collaboration tool called Twist. The app has been used internally for a while and is a direct product of the Todoist team's frustration with rival Slack.

Google Doodle lets you create visual music

Today's Google Doodle offers Internet users a chance to use visual cues to create their own music. And we have abstract filmmaker Oskar Fischinger to thank for it.

Facebook announces profile picture changes to help you stay safe

Facebook has announced a set of new safety features related to profile pictures that are designed to give users peace of mind over how their images are used. The options are based on feedback from Indian users and are currently limited to the country.

Google Glass updated for the first time in three years

Google has published the first software update for its Google Glass wearable computer since 2014. The minor release adds one feature to the device. It isn't known why Google has launched the update now as the consumer version of Glass has been abandoned.

Rare US total solar eclipse excites Americans coast-to-coast

For the first time in almost a century the United States is preparing for a coast-to-coast solar eclipse, a rare celestial event millions of Americans, with caution, will be able to observe.

Safety inside and outside Los Alamos Nuclear Lab questioned

The Defense Nuclear Facilities Safety Board met earlier this month to discuss the future of the U.S. Nuclear Weapons Facility at Los Alamos and to address safety issues and concerns brought up after a year-long investigative report surfaced.

Serotonin improves sociability in mouse model of autism

In promising new research, scientists working in Japan have linked early serotonin deficiency to various symptoms that occur along autism spectrum disorder. The research promises a new method for helping address autism symptoms.

Cats adopted humans, according to new study

New research looking at the genomes of cats has come up with something interesting: the domestic cats of today are genetically equivalent to ancient cats. Cats did not genetically adapt to become domesticated, they chose to.

Microsoft unveils new YouTube rival for business customers

Microsoft has launched a video streaming service for enterprise customers of its Office 365 cloud platform. Microsoft Stream is described as an "intelligent enterprise video service" that's built to give companies a robust online video platform.

Spotify lets you build playlists with your Facebook friends

Spotify has announced a new integration with Facebook Messenger that lets you and your friends create music playlists with the bot. Designed for use on social occasions like parties, it lets anyone add to the playlist to create the perfect soundtrack.

Swiss Egyptologists studying a 3,000-year-old wooden prosthesis

Researchers in Switzerland have been examining what may turn out to be the world's oldest known prosthetic device. The 3,000-year-old wooden toe attests to the skill, medical and anatomical knowledge of the ancient artisan who made the device.

Microsoft launches experimental voice dictation Office add-in

Microsoft has unveiled an experimental extension for its Office apps that lets you dictate text using your voice. The company claims the technology is faster than typing with the keyboard. It supports over 20 languages, including automatic translation.

Google wants to help you find jobs without leaving search

Google has announced a new search feature that helps connect you to job openings near your area. Described as a "company-wide initiative" to aid jobseekers, the technology uses machine learning to deliver better matched job search results.

Using machine learning to detect fake on-line profiles

The era of ‘fake news’ extends to ‘fake profiles’ on social media designed for the spreading of misinformation, as well as being used for criminal activities. A new computer program shows success in spotting these.

See why nanowires are the future of electronics

The current consumer demand for small-sized electronic devices requires new approaches for their design. One answer is nanowires, according to scientists from the University of the Basque Country.

Uber will finally let its drivers accept tips

Uber drivers in Seattle, Minneapolis, and Houston can now accept tips via the company's app, and more drivers will be able to accept tips soon, as the troubled ride-sharing company moves to mend fences with customers and partners.

Tackling autism by targeting gut bacteria

As part of the research into probiotic and prebiotic supplements, researchers have reported on indications that suggest altering the bacteria found in the human gut could help to address the symptoms of autism.

LG unveils the G6+ with more storage and 'turbocharged' sound

LG has announced a new version of its G6 flagship smartphone that includes a larger storage capacity, improved audio capabilities and new software features. The updated phone brings iterative changes to the original and will be available worldwide.

Nintendo Switch gets its biggest software update yet

Nintendo is rolling out a major update to the Nintendo Switch's software. It includes improvements to the user interface, a streamlined way of adding friends from older Nintendo consoles and the ability to physically locate lost controllers.

Is Silicon Valley resisting Trump? (It's complicated) Special

Until recently, tech companies have largely shied away from politics. With Donald Trump’s election, though, they may no longer have the luxury of sitting on the sidelines. But are these companies really willing to stick their necks out?

Mozilla launches its privacy-first mobile web browser on Android

Mozilla has officially launched Firefox Focus on Android devices. Previously iOS-exclusive, the web browser is designed for people looking for strengthened online privacy and a clutter-free experience. There's a built-in ad blocker and data saving mode.

European Union mulls making end-to-end encryption mandatory

The European Parliament has proposed that end-to-end encryption should be used to protect all forms of online communication. The legislation would outlaw "backdoors" in software and seek to extend the digital privacy rights of EU citizens.

ESA boss urges action on 'ticking timebombs' in Earth orbit

A European Space Agency director urged nations Tuesday to unlock concealed data on the whereabouts of hundreds of thousands of pieces of space junk, or "ticking time bombs" threatening spacecraft in Earth orbit.

Essential Science: Planets close to dim stars may support life

The question of whether life exists on other planets in the depths of our galaxy continues to intrigue people. If we are to find out that we are alone in the universe then examining planets orbiting dim red stars might provide the answer.

Thousands of sea creatures invading British Columbia coastline

The bioluminescent sea creatures started showing up along the coastline of British Columbia about two years ago. The soft, spongy, animals are called pyrosomes and they are not normally found in the Pacific Northwest. So why are they in BC's waters?

Surface Laptop a 'glue-filled monstrosity,' impossible to repair

A teardown of Microsoft's new Surface Laptop has revealed it is impossible to repair. The laptop, now shipping to customers, has been described as a "glue-filled monstrosity" by repair specialists iFixit. The new Surface Pro is similarly problematic.