Alex L

72 Flips | 4 Magazines | @AwsomeAlex23 | Keep up with Alex L on Flipboard, a place to see the stories, photos, and updates that matter to you. Flipboard creates a personalized magazine full of everything, from world news to life’s great moments. Download Flipboard for free and search for “Alex L”

The End of Big Data

It's the world after personal data: all identifying information is illegal. No servers, no search records, no social, no surveillance. A pair of satellites, circling the planet, make sure the data centers are turned off—and stay off.<p><i>Personal data is anything but personal. Our phones and televisions</i> …

Four Ways Spacefaring Microbes Could Muck Up the Solar System

When scientists launch a spacecraft into space, they're also launching thousands of bacteria along with it<p><i>This article was originally published in the January 2015 issue of</i> Popular Science.<p>To prepare the <i>Curiosity</i> rover for its trip to Mars, NASA scrubbed it with alcohol and baked it at 230°F. This …

Nasa’s rover measures fluctuations of gas not easily explained by geology or organic material dropped by meteorites<p>Nasa’s robotic rover, Curiosity, has detected fluctuating wafts of methane on Mars, fuelling speculation that the gas may be coming from a form of life on the red planet.<p>An instrument …

Mars Curiosity Rover Finds Clues to Genesis of Ancient Lake and Peak

Geological observations from NASA's Curiosity rover have helped scientists come up with a scenario for the creation of a lake that's bigger than Salt Lake and a mountain that's higher than Mount Rainier on ancient Mars.<p>The scenario suggests that water could have filled much of 96-mile-wide …

Jigsaw Puzzles

New Horizons probe rouses from hibernation for Pluto mission

After nine years and a journey of 3bn miles, Nasa’s New Horizons robotic probe awoke from hibernation on Saturday to begin an unprecedented mission to study the icy dwarf planet Pluto and sibling worlds in its Kuiper Belt home.<p>A pre-set alarm clock roused New Horizons from its electronic slumber at …

Orion spacecraft's flawless test flight puts Mars exploration one step closer

White smoke rose in the air and green dye coloured the ocean to guide the USS Anchorage and smaller recovery vessels to the spot where Nasa’s Orion crew capsule splashed down to Earth after a flawless and awe-inspiring test flight on Friday.<p>Cameras mounted inside Orion caught the casual splendour …

Nasa's Orion spacecraft prepares for launch in first step towards manned Mars mission

Nasa’s quest to send astronauts out into the solar system will begin this week with a two-laps-around-Earth test flight.<p>The new Orion spacecraft is not going to Mars just yet; Thursday’s debut will be unmanned and last just four and a half hours. But it will be the farthest a built-for-humans …

Even if you assume you have the technology and the money to do it, how big should any successor to CERN’s Large Hadron Collider be? Physicists are trying to work it out<p>Somehow, you have to like a paper which contains the phrase<p>Now, let us assume that the effective cross section for the inelastic …

The Most Important Question In A Job Interview

My daughter’s first non-babysitting job was a job at a fast-growing national fast food chain. My daughter worked at the fast food place for about six months before she moved up to a job in her school’s library.<p>One day she called me to get my take on a conversation she’d had with her manager. “Mom,” …

Why Thousands Of People Are Willing To Die On Mars

More than 200,000 aspiring space explorers volunteered for a one-way trip to Mars. Are they insane?<p><i>Editor's note: Mars One recently narrowed its pool of candidates to 100 people--many of whom we featured in the November 2014 issue (part of which exists here). We've reposted this story for your</i> …

Mystery of Earth's Water Origin Solved

Instead of arriving later by comet impact, Earth's waters have likely existed since our planet's birth.<p>The water that makes Earth a majestic blue marble was here from the time of our planet's birth, according to a new study of ancient meteorites, scientists reported Thursday.<p>Where do the oceans …

The Space Station Is Getting A UPS-Style Shipping Service

A new vehicle design could enable same-day shipping from the ISS to Earth, making science experiments in microgravity cheaper and easier.<p>It’s easy to forget that the International Space Station isn’t just a place for astronauts to hang out and take epic selfies. Because of its unique microgravity …

Going up! Cosmic elevator could reach space on a cable made of diamonds

<b>(CNN) —</b> Want to ride an elevator into space? While the idea has been around for more than 100 years, a breakthrough in nanotechnology could mean we will be riding into space on a cable made of diamonds.<p>Scientists at Penn State University in the US released a research paper last month that showed …

Elon Musk's Hyperloop Makes The Bullet Train Look Like A Steam Locomotive

But compared to the so-called "Hyperloop" concept that Tesla and SpaceX CEO Elon Musk introduced last year, the bullet train might as well be from the age of steam propulsion.<p>Three hours? Try 35 minutes.<p>Musk says the Hyperloop would cost $7.5 billion to build, versus $68 billion for the high-speed …

Our First Look at the Moon's Far Side

The race to land a man on the Moon in the 1960s dominates narratives of the early space age, but it wasn’t the only time the United States and the Soviet Union were racing to achieve a goal in space. In the late 1950s, both nations were fighting to get spacecraft to the Moon, and among those …

Evidence Found Of A Particle That Is Its Own Antiparticle

In the future, the exotic particle could go into quantum computers.<p>There's a particle that physicists theorize exists that acts simultaneously as both matter and antimatter. Whoa! The particle is called the Majorana fermion, and a team of physicists is announcing today that it's seen some evidence …

Can We Hack Our Vision To See Infrared With The Naked Eye?

A team of biohackers is attempting to modify the human sensory spectrum.<p>“Can you imagine a color you’ve never seen?” Jeffrey Tibbetts asks, looking directly into the Skype camera. We would like to think that we can, of course, that our imaginations are limitless. But the answer, no matter how much …

5 Reasons Why Sports Matter in American Cities

With football season nearly here and Major League Baseball approaching the dog days of summer, it's the perfect time to consider the overall importance of sports and what they mean to a city. What makes a city primed for sports relevancy? It is obvious that size and economic strength alone aren't …

DNA mates: how genetic factors may play a subtle part in our friendships

Friends often look alike. The tendency of people to forge friendships with people of a similar appearance has been noted since the time of Plato. But now there is research suggesting that, to a striking degree, we tend to pick friends who are genetically similar to us in ways that go beyond …

Spaceports: Britain takes a giant leap into the space race

Ministers announce plans for a 'spaceport', disclosing eight potential sites for a base from which rockets would carry satellites, astronauts and tourists by 2018<p>Britain enters the space race as ministers announce plans for a “spaceport” which could see flights to Australia taking only two …

United Kingdom

The Navy Wants To Fire Its Ridiculously Strong Railgun From The Ocean

They want to test firing it from a ship in 2016, and again in 2018.<p>In 2016, the U.S. Navy is going to test a railgun—a weapon that can repeatedly launch a projectile at more than 5,000 MPH—from a boat. In 2018, they're going to do it again. And in the 2020s, the Navy is going to figure out just …

Military

Buzz Aldrin makes the case for a one-way manned mission to Mars

Buzz Aldrin, the moonwalking astronaut, keeps an office on the 10th floor of a stately condominium building in Westwood. Now 84, he considers himself a “global statesman for space” and expends his considerable vitality advocating for manned exploration of the cosmos from the helm of Buzz Aldrin …

Singing Solar Shockwave Confirms Voyager Is In Interstellar Space

Legendary NASA spacecraft Voyager 1 has been hit by another “tsunami wave” of solar activity, confirming that it’s definitely sailing through interstellar space.<p>These waves, which affect cosmic rays and plasma, are one of the indications that suggested to scientists back in 2013 that the craft had …

Two years ago the discovery of the Higgs boson was announced. What's new?

The Large Hadron Collider, in its 27km tunnel under the Franco-Swiss border, has been under maintenance since early 2013. No particles have been colliding, and no new data have been flowing through the high-bandwidth cables spreading across the world ready to feed eager physicists with new …

Nasa lands saucer-shaped vehicle in test of technology for landing on Mars

A saucer-shaped Nasa vehicle launched by balloon high into Earth's atmosphere splashed down in the Pacific Ocean on Saturday, completing a successful test of technology that could be used to land on Mars.<p>Since the twin Viking spacecraft landed on the red planet in 1976, Nasa has relied on the same …

Motivation - The Running Bug

Newly discovered planet is the most Earth-like yet, scientists say

Astronomers from the University of New South Wales in Australia have discovered a new planet that could be the most similar to the Earth ever observed.<p>The planet, dubbed Gliese 832c, is about 16 lightyears away and about five times the size of Earth. Astronomers said the planet orbits a red giant …

Motivation - The Running Bug

Scientists simulate time travel using light particles

We may never see practical time travel in our lifetimes, if it's possible at all. However, a team at the University of Queensland has given the Doc Browns of the world a faint glimmer of hope by simulating time travel on a very, very small scale. Their study used individual photons to replicate a …