Are Habitable Exoplanets Bad News For Humanity?

Slashdot - 35 min 51 sec ago
An anonymous reader writes "The discovery of Kepler-186f last week has dusted off an interesting theory regarding the fate of humanity and the link between that fate and the possibility of life on other planets. Known as the The Great Filter, this theory attempts to answer the Fermi Paradox (why we haven't found other complex life forms anywhere in our vast galaxy) by introducing the idea of an evolutionary bottleneck which would make the emergence of a life form capable of interstellar colonization statistically rare. As scientists gear up to search for life on Kepler-186f, some people are wondering if humanity has already gone through The Great Filter and miraculously survived or if it's still on our horizon and may lead to our extinction."

Read more of this story at Slashdot.








Categories: Science

Flying Robots Play Theme of '2001: A Space Odyssey' (Video)

Space.com - 44 min 27 sec ago
The agile drones play a variety of specially rigged musical instruments — including drums, guitar and keyboard — during their performance of the famous song. They also play several other ditties, including the "Star Spangled Banner."
Categories: Science

New White House Petition For Net Neutrality

Slashdot - 1 hour 14 min ago
Bob9113 (14996) writes "On the heels of yesterday's FCC bombshell, there is a new petition on the White House petition site titled, 'Maintain true net neutrality to protect the freedom of information in the United States.' The body reads: 'True net neutrality means the free exchange of information between people and organizations. Information is key to a society's well being. One of the most effective tactics of an invading military is to inhibit the flow of information in a population; this includes which information is shared and by who. Today we see this war being waged on American citizens. Recently the FCC has moved to redefine "net neutrality" to mean that corporations and organizations can pay to have their information heard, or worse, the message of their competitors silenced. We as a nation must settle for nothing less than complete neutrality in our communication channels. This is not a request, but a demand by the citizens of this nation. No bandwidth modifications of information based on content or its source.'"

Read more of this story at Slashdot.








Categories: Science

On-Orbit Satellite Builds: DARPA Phoenix Project Animation

Space.com - 1 hour 50 min ago
The Defense Advanced Research Projects Agency's (DARPA) multi-faceted project (satellite recycling, repair, construction) is looking to reduce the cost of geosynchronous orbit satellites, with 'Satlets'.
Categories: Science

Google Plus Now Minus Chief Vic Gundotra

Slashdot - 1 hour 53 min ago
JG0LD (2616363) writes "Vic Gundotra, the man behind Google Plus and one of Google's most prominent executives, announced today that he will leave the company 'effective immediately.' Gundotra made the announcement, appropriately enough, in a lengthy Google Plus post, praising his co-workers and saying that he is 'excited about what's next.' However, he did not further outline his future plans, saying that 'this isn't the day to talk about that.'"

Read more of this story at Slashdot.








Categories: Science

Verizon and New Jersey Agree 4G Service Equivalent to Broadband Internet

Slashdot - 2 hours 35 min ago
An anonymous reader writes with news that Verizon and New Jersey regulators have reached a deal releasing Verizon from their obligation to have brought 45Mbps broadband to all NJ residents by 2010. Instead, 4G wireless service is considered sufficient. From the article: "2010 came and went and a number of rural parts of the state are still living with dial-up or subpar DSL. And even though the original deal was made in the days of modems and CompuServe, its crafters had the foresight to define broadband as 45Mbps, which is actually higher than many Verizon broadband customers receive today. ... In spite of that, and the thousands of legitimate complaints from actual New Jersey residents, the BPU voted unanimously yesterday to approve a deal with Verizon ... According to the Bergen Record, Verizon will no longer be obligated to provide broadband to residents if they have access to broadband service from cable TV providers or wireless 4G service. ... Residents who happen to live in areas not served by cable or wireless broadband can petition Verizon for service, but can only get broadband if at least 35 people in a single census tract each agree to sign contracts for a minimum of one year and pay $100 deposits."

Read more of this story at Slashdot.








Categories: Science

Verizon and New Jersey Agree 4G Service Equivalent to Broadband Internet

Slashdot - 2 hours 35 min ago
An anonymous reader writes with news that Verizon and New Jersey regulators have reached a deal releasing Verizon from their obligation to have brought 45Mbps broadband to all NJ residents by 2010. Instead, 4G wireless service is considered sufficient. From the article: "2010 came and went and a number of rural parts of the state are still living with dial-up or subpar DSL. And even though the original deal was made in the days of modems and CompuServe, its crafters had the foresight to define broadband as 45Mbps, which is actually higher than many Verizon broadband customers receive today. ... In spite of that, and the thousands of legitimate complaints from actual New Jersey residents, the BPU voted unanimously yesterday to approve a deal with Verizon ... According to the Bergen Record, Verizon will no longer be obligated to provide broadband to residents if they have access to broadband service from cable TV providers or wireless 4G service. ... Residents who happen to live in areas not served by cable or wireless broadband can petition Verizon for service, but can only get broadband if at least 35 people in a single census tract each agree to sign contracts for a minimum of one year and pay $100 deposits."

Read more of this story at Slashdot.








Categories: Science

Harrison Ford Takes On Climate Change, Visits NASA | Video

Space.com - 2 hours 54 min ago
Last November, the actor visited NASA's Ames Research Center to talk scientists about their work in Earth Science. Ford is co-hosting the Showtime Channel's documentery "Years of Living Dangerously".
Categories: Science

Venus and the Moon Shine Together at Dawn This Week: Where to Look

Space.com - 3 hours 3 min ago
If your skies are clear before dawn on Friday and Saturday (April 25 and 26), check out the sky low to the east-southeast horizon about 60 to 90 minutes before sunrise for a view of the two brightest objects in the nighttime sky: the moon and Venus.
Categories: Science

Consumers Not Impressed With 3D Printing

Slashdot - 3 hours 16 min ago
Lucas123 (935744) writes "Putting a 3D printer beside the coffee maker in every home, as some manufacturers hope will happen someday, is a long ways from reality as consumers today still don't understand how the technology will benefit them, according to a new study. The study, by Juniper Research, states that part of the problem is that killer applications with the appropriate eco-system of software, apps and materials have yet to be identified and communicated to potential users. And, even though HP has announced its intention to enter the 3D printing space (possibly this fall) a massive, mainstream corporation isn't likely to change the market."

Read more of this story at Slashdot.








Categories: Science

Space History Photo: Launch Phase Simulator at Goddard Space Flight Center

Space.com - 3 hours 24 min ago
This machine simulates the vibration, G-forces and pressure spacecrafts encounter during launch and landing.
Categories: Science

New Shape Born From Rubber Bands

Slashdot - 3 hours 53 min ago
sciencehabit (1205606) writes "Physicists playing with rubber bands have discovered a new shape. In an attempt to create a spring that replicates the light-bending properties of cuttlefish ink sacs, a team of researchers suspended two rubber strips of different lengths. Connecting the bottoms of the two strips to a cup of water, the shorter band stretched to the same length as the longer one. After gluing the two stretched strips together, the researchers gradually drained the water from the cup. As the bands retracted and twisted from the reduced strain, the researchers were shocked to see the formation of a hemihelix with multiple rainbow-shaped boundaries called perversions. The team hopes their work inspires nanodevices and molecules that twist and transform from flat strips into predetermined 3D shapes on demand." There are several videos attached to the original paper, and all can be viewed without flash.

Read more of this story at Slashdot.








Categories: Science

Mystery Solved! Super-Bright Supernova Was Magnified by Cosmic Lens

Space.com - 4 hours 21 min ago
An incredibly bright supernova spotted in 2010 has been the subject of a stellar mystery until now.
Categories: Science

Supernova Magnified 30X By Gravitational Lens | Animation

Space.com - 4 hours 21 min ago
As Einstein predicted, Spacetime warps around massive objects (i.e. galaxies). Light from objects ‘behind’ them (e.g. Supernova PS1-10afx ) is bent and magnified to observers on Earth. Full Story: http://goo.gl/zbEnnK
Categories: Science

Astronomers Discover Pair of Black Holes In Inactive Galaxy

Slashdot - 4 hours 37 min ago
William Robinson (875390) writes "The Astronomers at XMM-Newton have detected a pair of supermassive black holes at the center of an inactive galaxy. Most massive galaxies in the Universe are thought to harbor at least one supermassive black hole at their center. And a pair of black holes is indication of strong possibility that the galaxies have merged. Finding black holes in quiescent galaxies is difficult because there are no gas clouds feeding the black holes, so the cores of these galaxies are truly dark. It can be only detected by this 'tidal disruption event'."

Read more of this story at Slashdot.








Categories: Science

Astronomers Discover Pair of Black Holes In Inactive Galaxy

Slashdot - 4 hours 37 min ago
William Robinson (875390) writes "The Astronomers at XMM-Newton have detected a pair of supermassive black holes at the center of an inactive galaxy. Most massive galaxies in the Universe are thought to harbor at least one supermassive black hole at their center. And a pair of black holes is indication of strong possibility that the galaxies have merged. Finding black holes in quiescent galaxies is difficult because there are no gas clouds feeding the black holes, so the cores of these galaxies are truly dark. It can be only detected by this 'tidal disruption event'."

Read more of this story at Slashdot.








Categories: Science

Astronomers Discover Pair of Black Holes In Inactive Galaxy

Slashdot - 4 hours 37 min ago
William Robinson (875390) writes "The Astronomers at XMM-Newton have detected a pair of supermassive black holes at the center of an inactive galaxy. Most massive galaxies in the Universe are thought to harbor at least one supermassive black hole at their center. And a pair of black holes is indication of strong possibility that the galaxies have merged. Finding black holes in quiescent galaxies is difficult because there are no gas clouds feeding the black holes, so the cores of these galaxies are truly dark. It can be only detected by this 'tidal disruption event'."

Read more of this story at Slashdot.








Categories: Science

Facebook Invests in the Future of Wearables With Fitness App Acquisition

Wired News - 5 hours 1 min ago
Facebook already tracks your every move online. Now, with the acquisition of the fitness app, Moves, it wants to track your workouts, too.






Categories: Science

Brazil Approves Internet Bill of Rights

Slashdot - 5 hours 17 min ago
First time accepted submitter Dr.Potato (247646) writes "After more than three years being discussed, Brazil's Internet Bill of Rights was approved on April 22nd (and in Portuguese). It was rushed through the senate in order that president Dilma Roussef could sign it during the meeting on internet governance that occurs in São Paulo this week. In the bill of rights, among other things, net neutrality was maintained, providers will not be legally responsible for content published by users (but are forced to take it down when legally requested) and internet providers are obliged to keep records of users' access for six months and can't pass this responsibility to other companies." Brazilian internet users may continue to have the right to be surveilled on social media, too.

Read more of this story at Slashdot.








Categories: Science

Can You Slow Down a Day Using Angular Momentum?

Wired News - 5 hours 32 min ago
Could a spinning human slow down the Earth? Theoretically, yes. But in practice, the amount of spin you'd have to give would be so monstrous that it is nearly impossible.






Categories: Science