Alan Hurd

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This new street drug is 10,000 times more potent than morphine, and now it’s showing up in Canada and the U.S.

It was first developed in a Canadian lab more than three decades ago, promising and potent — and intended to relieve pain in a less addictive way.<p>Labeled W-18, the synthetic opioid was the most powerful in a series of about 30 compounds concocted at the University of Alberta and patented in the …

Selling

We can respect same-sex marriage and religious freedom

<b>(CNN) —</b> "Hello. My name is Ana, and I support marriage equality." For many years, I felt like being a pro-same sex marriage Republican would land me in a 12-step program.<p>Unlike Barack Obama, Hillary Clinton and so many other Americans, I didn't evolve on the issue. I don't remember a time in my …

LGBTQI

Puberty Suppression Now A Choice For Teens On Medicaid In Oregon

Michael was born biologically male 13 years ago on the Grand Ronde Indian Reservation.<p>Mom, Dee, remembers buying dresses for three nieces when Michael — who now goes by Michaela — was about 6 years old.<p>"When she saw those dresses, her eyes just lit up. And she said, 'Who are those for?' I'll never …

Puberty

Drone waiters are ready to serve in Singapore

One restaurant in downtown Singapore is spicing up its dining experience by employing flying drones as wait staff.<p>Singaporean restaurant-bar chain Timbré is employing a fleet of flying drones as waitstaff for its live-music eateries. Earlier this month, the restaurant chain and robotics company …

Drones

Kaspersky Lab reveals spyware on the world’s most popular hard drives, suspects the NSA

The security researchers at Kaspersky Lab have revealed that an agency – most likely the NSA – has developed spyware that can be hidden on hard drives.<p>The software has been found to work with hardware made by Western Digital, Seagate, Toshiba, IBM, Micron Technology and Samsung, and could provide a …

Surveillance

10 Historical Photos and Stories of Drag Queens

"Queens," or men who defy gender norms and dress as women, have always been present in the LGBTQ community and pop culture. Their journey has been long, but as a society we have progressed to a level of acceptance which has unfortunately not always been a part of our culture.<p>We acknowledge that not …

18 One-Pan Breakfast Recipes That Will Send You to the Strata-sphere

Alright, show of hands. Who out there loves bread, brunch and basically all things indulgent? Looks like just about everyone. This means you <i>definitely</i> need some strata in your life. These 18 eggy, cheesy and sometimes meaty bread puddings stir together all of the usual breakfast table suspects into …

Seven unknown architectural wonders

Forget the Taj Mahal and the Colosseum – some of the world’s most impressive structures remain out of the public eye.<p>We’ve all heard of the Colosseum, the Great Wall of China, and the Taj Mahal. But what about the world’s undiscovered architectural wonders: the man-made marvels where most crowds …

European Travel

How I Made Myself a DIY Spider Light for $40

I recently made myself a DIY Spider Light as a thrifty alternative to the Spiderlite that costs hundreds of dollars. The entire project ended up …

The £6 box which spies on everything you type

Your wireless keyboard may be broadcasting everything passwords to credit cards numbers and private emails, as a researcher posts instructions online for a homemade bugging device costing just £6<p>If you use a wireless keyboard you may be broadcasting everything you type to hackers – from passwords …

Karaba Brick Quarry

Karaba is a small African village in southwestern Burkina Faso. Outside the village, a short distance from the dusty main road, is a quarry where men carve bricks from solid stone using only picks and shovels.<p>The rock is called laterite (from the Latin “later” meaning “brick”). The quarry has been …

Excavation uncovers secret underground Nazi WMD factory

Suspiciously high radiation levels around the Austrian town of St. Georgen an der Gusen had long fueled theories that there was a buried bunker nearby where Nazis had tested nuclear weapons during WWII.<p>Those suspicions came one step closer to being confirmed last week after the opening of a 75-acre …

Ebola outbreak: Sierra Leone confirms first deaths

<b>Four people have died of Ebola in Sierra Leone, the first confirmed cases in the country following an outbreak in Guinea, the health ministry has said.</b><p>They died in the eastern Kailahun district, which borders southern Guinea where the outbreak started in March and has killed more than 145 …

Backblaze’s newest storage pod holds 180TB at 5 cents per GB

Advertisement<p>2 Comments<p>Cloud backup startup Backblaze open sourced its first storage system in 2009, and has been making them bigger and (most of the …

KnowRoaming's international sticker SIMs begin shipping to backers today

KnowRoaming, the company behind the roaming SIM "stickers" that popped up on Kickstarter last year, has begun shipping its device to the first 500 backers. The $35 pre-order kit, which includes a SIM sticker and a single-use applicator, enables international roaming at rates far lower than what …

The Observer's 20 photographs of the week

The best photography in news, culture and sport from around the world this week

What an eyeful: the world's most beautiful buildings

Straight away we'll say that this isn't a top 10 list. There are just far too many styles of buildings, each worthy of a top 50: sacred buildings, homes, skyscrapers, theatres...<p>Instead, this is a list showing the variety of architectural beauty across the globe - and pointing you in the direction …

Among kids in U.S., the rich get thinner and the poor get fatter

From many corners of the United States -- Los Angeles, Philadelphia, Mississippi -- recent years have brought heartening news about the relentless rise in obesity among American children: Several years into a campaign to get kids to eat better and exercise more, child obesity rates have appeared to …

High School

Tormented over their looks? Bullied teens seek free plastic surgery from a NYC nonprofit

A nonprofit in New York has an admirable mission: to provide free plastic surgery for low-income children who have facial deformities. Some of the kids who apply to the Little Baby Face Foundation do so because they are being teased over their looks. But is plastic surgery a smart way to help …

20 of the Best Productivity Apps of 2013

2013 was a great year for productivity. The email problem hasn’t been completely solved, but apps like Mailbox and Dispatch have taken away much of the pain of the task. Meanwhile, we have plenty of choices for calendar and to-do apps that are well-designed, useful and fast.<p>Here are 20 of our …

The Future According To Samsung

The following concept video shows how that could happen.<p>The video touches on a concept called "The Internet Of Things," which is a term people in the tech industry like to throw around when they talk about connecting everyday objects to the Internet. It may sound a little like the Jetsons today, …

Tech Industry

Bill Gates Funds A Smartphone Battery That Runs On Human Urine

The Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation is on a mission to improve human sanitation, particularly in areas of the world that don't have a reliable water supply. Much of that effort is about reinventing the toilet but the foundation has also challenged scientists to find ways to turn human waste into …

Step Into the Void Above the French Alps

High up in the French Alps, on the top terrace of the Aiguille du Midi mountain peak, sits a new five-sided glass structure called the Chamonix Skywalk. The installation was inspired by the Grand Canyon's glass skywalk, but it takes the concept to the next level. Instead of looking out over a …

Compelling Photographs of Life Off the Grid in Alec Soth’s ‘Broken Manual’ - The Fox Is Black

Broken Manual is a stunning series of photographs created by Alec Soth over a four-year period between 2006 and 2010. Inspired by men who have become …

GlamGlow BrightMud Eye Treatment Helps Us Fake A Full Night's Sleep

I haven't got a full night's sleep since December 13, aka the same day Beyoncé surprised us all with her new self-titled album. Of course, I had to download the Queen of Pop's visual masterpiece, listen to all 14 songs and watch the 17 videos. But I wasn't prepared to tackle my dark under-eye …

Meet the Robot Mule Google Is Now Making for the Marines

Yesterday Google announced, via the New York Times, that it had bought Boston Dynamics, a robotics company that specializes in amazing machines that …

Robotics

Mysterious smart ring project gives smartwatches the finger

A high-tech ring that promises to replicate many of the features found in the latest crop of smartwatches, but without strapping a brick to your wrist, is now one step closer to reality. Smarty Ring, a project that launched on Indiegogo last month, has blown past its funding goal to produce a ring …

Man Walks All Day to Create Massive Snow Patterns (Part 3)

English artist Simon Beck never ceases to amaze us with his large-scale murals of geometric patterns in snow. Each visually breathtaking piece, which Beck manually creates by walking through the snow and leaving behind his track prints, adds a surreal element to its natural landscape. Walking …

Murals

Why You’re More Likely To Buy Something When Shopping On Your iPad

The “endowment effect,” which makes us overvalue items, is stronger on a touch screen.<p>People tend to increase the value of an item the moment they take ownership of it. Psychologists call this the “endowment effect.” It shows up even in trivial things, like coffee mugs or chocolate bars, that …

See These Heartbreaking Photos Of The World’s Disappearing Cultures, Before They Fade Away

In the new book Before They Pass Away, photographer Jimmy Nelson has captured a series of gorgeous pictures of 31 remote cultures that are on the verge of disappearing.<p>Over the last three years, British photographer Jimmy Nelson traveled around the world–from Namibia to Papua New Guinea to …