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The physics of Star Wars' Starkiller Base: could that really happen?

A spoilery discussion about the science of The Force Awakens<p><b>Note: Major Star Wars: The Force Awakens spoilers ahead.</b><p>In <i>Star Wars: The Force Awakens</i>, the next generation of the Empire — known as the First Order — has developed a giant weapon called Starkiller. It's like the Death Star's primary …

Black Holes

Will the 'God particle' destroy the universe? (Opinion) - CNN.com

A proton-proton collision produced in the Large Hadron Collider shows characteristics in line with the decay of a Higgs boson particle.<p>HIDE CAPTION<p>Searching for the 'God particle'<p>Searching for the 'God particle'<p>Searching for the 'God particle'<p>Searching for the 'God particle'<p>Searching for the 'God …

ISIS executes British aid worker David Haines; Cameron vows justice

British aid worker David Haines has been executed by ISIS militants, according to a video posted Saturday to a website associated with the group, making him the third Western captive to be killed by the Islamist extremist group in recent weeks.<p>The ISIS video post showing Haines' beheading called …

Intel launches first 14-nanometre processor for thin fanless PCs

<b>Intel has launched a generation of processors with the smallest transistors ever featured in a commercial product.</b><p>The Core M chip is the first in the family of Intel's next-generation Broadwell processors.<p>Intel had initially aimed to start delivering them to computer makers last year.<p>However, …

Moore's Law

The trouble with trying to make trains go faster

As technology advances, transport gets ever faster, and trains are no exception. But with great speed come great drawbacks. Katia Moskvitch reports on the pitfalls facing train designers trying to reach even greater speed on rails.<p>Since George Stephenson’s Rocket, designers have been trying to make …

Trains

Physicists create tractor beam made of water

A water-based tractor beam that could contain oil spills and manipulate floating objects cannot yet be explained by mathematical theory.<p>A surprising new technique created by a team of physicists led by Professor Michael Shats at the Australian National University reveals that simple wave generators …

Quantum Mechanics

How Shark Week screws scientists

Discovery is alienating the very people who supply its content: scientists<p><i>This post was originally published last year. With this year's Shark Week programming beginning tonight, we thought this would be a good reminder of some of Discovery's more unpleasant tendencies.</i><p>Discovery’s Shark Week …

Motorola, Nokia, And Nintendo Are All Suffering From 'Last Blockbuster Syndrome'

BGR writer Tero Kuittinen calls it <i>Last Blockbuster Syndrome</i>:<p>Often at the start of a massive trend shift in consumer electronics, dominant dinosaurs get one massive hit built on a nearly obsolete paradigm, and that allows them to be lulled into a comfy trip to the grave.<p>The case studies include …

Blockbusters

The Internet Is Getting Too Big, And It's Becoming A Problem For Some Service Providers

Recent reports suggest the system that routers use to share the map of the internet with one another has grown too large for some older routers to handle — which could result in poor connectivity.<p>The problem is, older routers can only process a certain number of routes contained in this internet …

Net Neutrality

Pill could stop middle-aged spread before it starts

Scientstists at the University of Aberdeen have discovered what causes the middle-aged spread and how to turn if off with a new drug<p>Middle age is when your age starts to show around your middle, Bob Hope, the comedian, quipped.<p>But now scientists have discovered what causes the middle-aged spread, …

NASA Sees Black Hole Bend Light

NASA's black-hole hunting telescope has captured a cosmic battle between dark and light.<p>NuSTAR, formally known as the Nuclear Spectroscopic Telescope Array, has observed a supermassive black hole's gravity tugging on X-ray light that's being emitted near that black hole.<p>That light is getting …

One of science's most baffling questions? Why we yawn

Yawning has puzzled scientists for more than two millennia. But could a new theory settle the question once and for all? David Robson investigates.<p>Mid-conversation with Robert Provine, I have a compelling urge, rising from deep inside my body. The more I try to quash it, the more it seems to …

Neurology

Big Bang: How the Universe was created

What created all the planets, stars and galaxies? BBC Future presents a four-minute animated guide to one of the greatest questions we’ve tried to solve.<p>“You just won't believe how vastly, hugely, mind-bogglingly big space is,”said the author Douglas Adams. “I mean, you may think it's a long way …

Universe
Internet of Things
Internet of Things

Microsoft explains quantum computing so even you can understand

Quantum computing may someday blow away today's smartest machines. It's weird and heavy on the physics, but Microsoft thinks you can handle it.<p>Microsoft is offering a quick quantum computing primer that makes the esoteric subject almost understandable.<p>Quantum computing promises to solve …

Quantum Computing

Can you learn in your sleep?

Sleep learning used to be a pipe dream. Now neuroscientists say they have found ways to enhance your memory with your eyes closed, says David Robson.<p>Just before you climb under your duvet, you carefully prepare your room. You sprinkle a few drops of incense on your pillow, put on some headphones, …

The Brain

Squid Protein Could Help Brains 'Talk' to Computers

Unfortunately it won't allow humans to squirt ink, at least not yet.<p>In the most advanced prosthetics--such as this crazy mind-controlled robotic arm--electronic hardware interfaces directly with nerves and muscles in the human body. But getting living tissue to play nice with a circuit board is …

Black Holes May Explode Into 'White Holes' And Pour All Their Matter Into Space, Physicists Say

Black holes might end their lives by transforming into their exact opposite — 'white holes' that explosively pour all the material they ever swallowed into space, say two physicists. The suggestion, based on a speculative quantum theory of gravity, could solve a long-standing conundrum about …

TSMC may be losing A-series chip orders to Samsung

There’s a line in 1990’s <i>The Godfather: Part III</i> when Al Pacino’s Michael describes his inability to extract his family from a life of crime, saying: “Just when I thought I was out, they pull me back in.”<p>Much the same could be said for Apple’s relationship with long-time chip supplier and bitter …

How to handle the heat (with science)

Wherever and whenever they are, intelligent humans have developed ways to cool down, some of which are more drastic than others<p>UK could enjoy hottest April day in almost 70 years<p><i>This article was originally published in July 2014.</i><p>Hot out there. At least, that’s what people are saying. Weather …

WTF Just Happened: My Gadget Charged Very Slowly (Or Not at All)

You plugged in your phone or tablet hours ago, and the battery has recharged about 10 percent. Maybe the needle didn’t even move at all. The …