Dillon Spence

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Elon Musk: There is 'a real good chance' SpaceX's first Mars rocket test will fail

At the ISS R&D conference Thursday, Elon Musk provided some much-anticipated updates on SpaceX's upcoming manned mission to the Red Planet, explaining that the trip hinges on the success of the company's Falcon Heavy.<p>Once it launches this year, the Falcon Heavy will be the most powerful operational …

Space Exploration

11 Scientific Advances Of The Past 100 Years Gave Us Our Entire Universe

Exactly 100 years ago, our conception of the Universe was far different from what it is today. The stars within the Milky Way were known, and were known to be at distances up to thousands of light years away, but nothing was thought to be further. The Universe was assumed to be static, as the …

Universe

This One Imperfection In Nuclear Physics Allowed Earth To Exist

In order to create a rocky planet that’s teeming with life, the Universe needed to create large amounts of the heavy elements required for life’s processes. To make many of those elements, such as Tin, Iodine, Selenium, Molybdenum, Zinc, and Copper, you need supernovae to have occurred many times …

Neutrons

The Cell Atlas

In 1665, Robert Hooke peered down his microscope at a piece of cork and discovered little boxes that reminded him of rooms in a monastery. Being the …

Atoms

The 94-year-old father of the lithium-ion battery says he's made another big breakthrough

Researchers have struggled for decades to safely use powerful—but flammable—lithium metal in a battery. Now John Goodenough, the 94-year-old father of the lithium-ion battery, is claiming a novel solution as a blockbuster advance.<p>If it proves out, the invention could allow electric cars to compete …

Clean Energy

Discovery! Atmosphere Spotted on Nearly Earth-Size Exoplanet in First

For the first time, scientists have detected an atmosphere around a planet beyond our solar system that's just a little bit larger than Earth.<p>The …

Earth Prepares To Snap First-Ever Image Of A Black Hole's Event Horizon

Perhaps gravity’s oddest prediction is the existence of black holes: regions of space where gravity is so strong that nothing, not even light, can escape.<p>Only through gravitational effects, such as by influencing stars, have they ever been seen.<p>X-ray signatures can locate and be used to weigh black …

There’s another story to tell about climate change. And it starts with water | Judith D Schwartz

In this time of reckless US action, it’s crucial to shift the narrative beyond despair over fossil fuels and look at water as a primary tool of climate control<p>It’s easy for all concerned about air, water and nature to descend into despair as we watch brazen rollbacks of environmental legislation in …

Faintest Galaxies Ever Seen Explain The 'Missing Link' In The Universe

To see farther than ever, we point our most powerful space telescopes at a single region and collect light for days.<p>The Hubble Frontier Fields program focused on massive galaxy clusters, using their gravity to enhance our sight even further.<p>The only problem? The cluster itself is closer and …

Intelligent Machines are Teaching Themselves Quantum Physics

Machine learning could lead to unprecedented advances in quantum physics.<p>Last year, Google's DeepMind AI beat Lee Sedol at Go, a strategy game like chess, but orders of magnitude more complicated. The win was a remarkable step forward for the field of artificial intelligence, but it got Roger …

Jimmy Carter Continues His Green Energy Legacy With 10-Acre Solar Farm

Former President Jimmy Carter leased 10 acres of his land to Atlanta-based SolAmerica to develop a 1.3-megawatt solar farm in his hometown of Plains, …

Google’s DeepMind pits AI against AI to see if they fight or cooperate

Unsurprisingly, they do both<p>In the future, it’s likely that many aspects of human society will be controlled — either partly or wholly — by artificial intelligence. AI computer agents could manage systems from the quotidian (e.g., traffic lights) to the complex (e.g., a nation’s whole economy), but …

Denmark’s behemoth wind turbine is breaking power-production records

It recently generated a mind-blowing 216,000 kWh of power in a single 24-hour span<p>Denmark recently unveiled the world’s most powerful offshore wind turbine, a massive structure rising 721 feet tall and capable of producing 9 megawatts (MW). The facility, located off the coast of Østerild, Denmark, …

U.S. utilities seek solar power as Trump sides with coal, fossil fuels

The plunging cost of solar power is leading U.S. electric companies to capture more of the sun just when President Donald Trump is moving to boost coal and other fossil fuels.<p>Solar power represents just about 1% of the electricity U.S. utilities generate today, but that could grow substantially as …

Solar Power

Silicon Valley is right—our jobs are already disappearing

Stephen Hawking says that “we are at the most dangerous moment in the development of humanity” and that the “rise of artificial intelligence is likely to extend job destruction deep into the middle classes, with only the most caring, creative, or supervisory roles remaining.”<p>Sam Hinkie, the …

Silicon Valley

Check out these gorgeous new images of Earth From the GOES-16 satellite

Looking good, Earth<p>We've got a whole new view of our planet. The GOES-16 satellite, launched on November 19, sent back its first pictures of the Earth this week.<p>The satellite—a joint project between NOAA and NASA—is designed to observe conditions here on Earth, capturing images of our planet in an …

Near-Infrared

Why It Matters That Human Poker Pros Are Getting Trounced By an AI

We’re at the halfway point of the epic 20-day, 150,000-hand “Brains Vs. Artificial Intelligence” Texas Hold’em Poker tournament, and a machine named …

The five finalists in Google's private-sector race to the moon have 341 days to launch

Five teams now have until the end of the year to launch spacecraft to the moon in search of the $20 million first-place Google Lunar X-Prize.<p>The X-Prize foundation confirmed today that five teams from around the world demonstrated serious plans to launch in 2017 by the beginning of the year and …

Space Exploration

Dronerise: gradually, then suddenly

Drones feel a bit like old news already, don’t they? At least in the Valley, with its hyper-fragmented mayfly attention span. The military has used them for decades. DJI, the undisputed (consumer) polycopter industry leader, was founded in 2006. We tech journalists can’t stop talking about drones, …

Airbus Wants to Test Its Flying Car Prototype This Year

The aviation giant wants the autonomous flying taxis to work like ride-share services.<p>Airbus Group announced today that it plans to test an autonomous airborne taxi prototype for one passenger by the end of 2017, according to a report from<i>Reuters.</i> The aviation giant sees flying taxis as the next …

Why your weight loss plateaus, and how to fight it

Anyone who has tried to lose weight and keep it off knows how difficult the task can be.<p>It seems like it should be simple: Just exercise to burn more calories and reduce your calorie intake.<p>But many studies have shown that this simple strategy doesn't work very well for the vast majority of …

Images of giant wave on Venus captured by Japanese probe

Pressure wave in planet’s atmosphere was one of the largest ever seen in the solar system, stretching over 10,000 kilometres<p>A Japanese spacecraft that is circling Venus has beamed home pictures of one of the largest waves ever seen in the solar system.<p>The Akatsuki probe captured images of the giant …

The Internet Of Things Could Finally Get The Common Language It Needs

In the home and beyond, it’s more important than ever that gadgets get standard ways to talk to each other. And there are signs of progress.<p>Smart home gadgets were everywhere at the CES trade show in January, from useful iterations on connected light bulbs and door locks to odder endeavors such as …

Scientists Just Discovered a Brand-New Type of Galaxy

We've never seen anything like this before.<p>Scientists have discovered a rare type of galaxy some 359 million light-years away from Earth, with a …

Universe

Israel to test electric roads that wirelessly charge vehicles as they drive

Forget the charging port—the roads of the near future could power your electric car while you drive, eliminating the need to ever stop to recharge or …

Google Translate is Amazing Now, and That Should Terrify You

Translating languages is hard. If you’re fluent in more than one, you already know that there’s never any direct translation for a lot of phrases. …

Artificial Intelligence

How blockchain can create the world’s biggest supercomputer

Ben Dickson Contributor<p>Ben Dickson is a software engineer and the founder of TechTalks.<p>More posts by this contributor:<p>Unlocking the potential of eye tracking technology<br>• Can you trust crypto-token crowdfunding?<p>As our desktop computers, laptops, mobile devices, etc. stand idly by for a huge portion of …

Blockchain

Alexa, lights! How I turned my home into a sci-fi dream

For decades, sci-fi has told us voice operation is the way forward. Now AI butlers are here – and you don’t have to be Mark Zuckerberg do build your own<p>The Internet of Things is here, they cried. Great, but do I really have to pull out my smartphone to do everything? Pushing a button was so much …

10 things you should do now that you've welcomed Alexa into your life

So you just got an Amazon Echo or an Echo Dot — fantastic, because they're sold out almost everywhere!<p>Welcome to the future, where ordering a pizza …

Smart Homes

Scientists say your “mind” isn’t confined to your brain, or even your body

You might wonder, at some point today, what’s going on in another person’s mind. You may compliment someone’s great mind, or say they are out of their mind. You may even try to expand or free your own mind.<p>But what <i>is</i> a mind? Defining the concept is a surprisingly slippery task. The mind is the seat …

The Brain