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Apr 28
2017

Posted by: Stephanie Faris

Russia Shows Off Gun-Toting Terminator-Like Robot

Stephanie Faris
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Russia Shows Off Gun-Toting Terminator-Like Robot

So far, artificial intelligence has been software based, operating inside of machinery and electronic equipment. But an invention in Russia conjures comparisons to futuristic movies like The Terminator and Robocop.

The invention is a sci-fi-inspired robot, complete with arms, legs, and a head. The country’s deputy prime minister has been showing off the robot on social media, sharing pictures of the robot holding two pistols. FEDOR the robot specializes in shooting two firearms at once.

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Apr 27
2017

Posted by: Jim Lillie

Ford's Car Crib a Modern Twist on an Old Idea

Jim Lillie
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Fords Car Crib a Modern Twist on an Old Idea

Ever tried to get an infant to sleep, only to discover that no amount of rocking, cooing, singing, or pleading would get the job done?

Chances are you might have hit upon an idea, whether the result of advice from a more experienced parent or simply from hard experience, that almost always works: Take the tot for a ride in the car (in his or her car seat, of course), and it won't be long before those eyelids get heavier and the kid just can't fight the fatigue anymore.

Unless they get car sick and throw up. But that's another matter.

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Apr 26
2017

Posted by: Stephanie Faris

General Public Joins the Search for the Ninth Planet

Stephanie Faris
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General Public Joins the Search for the Ninth Planet

Just when we began growing accustomed to only having eight planets, we may be returning to a nine-planet solar system. Last October, experts predicted that a ninth planet will be discovered by 2018, citing the fact that scientists were closing in on the much-discussed hypothetical planet.

Now consumers have joined the search. Zooniverse is hosting a citizen science campaign to find the ninth planet. The campaign has been successful so far, with consumers locating four previously unidentified objects in the area where the ninth planet is likely to be.

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Apr 25
2017

Posted by: Jim Lillie

Coin Toss to Determine Next Village President

Jim Lillie
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Coin Toss to Determine Next Village President

22 people recently voted for the village president of Colp, Illinois. After the ballots were at last tallied, the result was 11 votes for Tammy O’Daniell-Howell and the same number for Bryan Riekena. The plot thickened when Williamson County Clerk Amanda Barnes told the Southern Illinoisan “We are not waiting for any absentee ballots, so the vote total should not change."

In the grand American tradition, ties are "like kissing your sister," as legendary Alabama football coach Paul "Bear" Bryant is said to have opined. That applies to most any contest, whether on the gridiron or via the ballot box. So, local officials turned to another time-honored American ritual -- the coin toss.

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Apr 24
2017

Posted by: Stephanie Faris

Researchers Discover Fast Radio Bursts Come from Deep Space

Stephanie Faris
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Researchers Discover Fast Radio Bursts Come from Deep Space

They happen in intervals of several milliseconds, appearing as flashes in the sky. But fast radio bursts (FRBs) have yet to be clearly explained by the scientific community. A new study has provided insight into where these bursts originate, which is the first step toward learning more about what causes them.

Using the Molonglo Observatory Synthesis Telescope, researchers traced the origin of three of the bursts from outer space, rather than having a more local origination. The team arrived at that conclusion because the events’ origins were beyond the 10,000-kilometer limit of the telescope’s range.

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Apr 23
2017

Posted by: Jim Lillie

Back to the Retro Tech Future

Jim Lillie
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Back to the Retro Tech Future

Getting all nostalgic for older tech products may have more to do with the present state of world affairs than with sentimental fondness for a familiar and reliable gadget.

So suggests Jack Morse who, writing at Mashable, lays it right on the line: "[L]et's face it: The present is garbage. The ecosystem is collapsing, a self-proclaimed sexual assaulter is in the White House, science denial is all the rage, and the launch of the new iPhone 8 might be delayed by a few months."

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Apr 22
2017

Posted by: Stephanie Faris

Graphene Could Be the Answer to Global Water Shortages

Stephanie Faris
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Graphene Could Be the Answer to Global Water Shortages

Access to clean drinking water remains one of the top challenges facing residents of less-developed areas of the world. Even in developed areas, water is not an unlimited resource. An invention by a United Kingdom team could give people the option of converting seawater into drinking water using graphene oxide.

This isn’t the first experiment with graphene to filter water for drinking. However, previous efforts have been unsuccessful, blocked by the fact that when immersed in water, the pores in the sheet of graphene inevitably swelled, which allowed impurities through. The U.K. team used an epoxy resin composite to keep the pores in place when submerged in water, activating the originally desired filtering process.

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