Ashton O'Keefe

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NASA-Sponsored Study Warns Of Possible Collapse Of Civilization

Two scenarios of how it may all come crashing down<p>We've heard many times that if we don't change our ways, our civilization may be doomed. But such suggestions are often pushed aside. Nobody likes a whiner, as they say. And our society isn't big on long-term thinking. Well, a new NASA-funded study …

Space

21 Food Superstitions You Should Really Know About

From spilling salt to cutting bananas, here are 21 kitchen-related superstitions you should be aware of.<p>Everyone knows that garlic wards off vampires and that spilling salt is terrible luck. But did you know that you should never cut a banana with a knife? And speaking of knives, did you know that …

Hot Cross Buns

Geminid meteor shower begins: watch out for fireballs

Nasa says the Geminids will be the most intense meteor shower of the year – and almost everyone can see it<p>The mysterious Geminid meteor shower lights the skies of Earth between 12 and 16 December and is visible from almost anywhere on the planet. This year the peak rate is estimated to be 100-120 …

FDA Aims To Reduce Use Of Antibiotics For Fattening Farm Animals

But critics say the program won’t actually change how much antibiotics pigs, chickens and other animals consume.<p>The U.S. Food and Drug Administration is asking veterinary drug companies to voluntarily agree to make it illegal to feed healthy animals some antibiotics. If the antibiotic is on the …

Farm Animals

NASA Unveils Valkyrie, Its Humanoid Rescue Robot [Video]

The space agency shows off its entry in the DARPA Robotics Challenge.<p>The Boston Dynamics-built ATLAS is the rescue robot prototype that gets all the attention, but now NASA is getting in on the action, unveiling Valkyrie, a 6-foot 2-inch, 275-pound rescue robot. The 'bot, an entrant in the DARPA …

Robotics

A Pen That 3-D Prints Bone Right Onto Patients

The device could eventually let surgeons apply stem cells more directly<p>One of the greatest promises of 3-D printing is that we'll one day be able to print organs on-demand. Need a new liver? There it is, at the push of a button.<p>Anticipating that future, scientists from the University of Wollongong …

3D

Scientists With Sense Of Humor Explore Dangers Of Laughter

It's all fun and games until someone gets hurt.<p>Over the holidays, the <i>British Medical Journal</i> publishes a special edition, in which they "are pleased to consider all kinds of articles." All kinds, indeed. In this "narrative synthesis," the researchers attempt to answer the question "is laughter …

Creative Commons

The Mysterious Case of Santa Claus's Leaking Bones

The body of St. Nicholas—the man Santa Claus is based on—resides in Bari, Italy. The church claims that the bones of the saint are secreting a …

Ronald Reagan

8 Legendary Monsters of Christmas

The customs of the holiday season, which include St. Nicholas Day, New Years Day, and Epiphany, as well as Christmas, often incorporate earlier pagan …

Beautiful strange and rare cloud formations

Various cloud formations might be one of the most beautiful and romantic sights in nature, but these masses of liquid droplets is also a complex and …

Black hole bonanza in 'next door' Andromeda galaxy

Twenty-six new black hole candidates have been discovered in the neighbouring Andromeda galaxy. According to the astronomers involved, these could be …

Nasa's Opportunity rover finds Martian water appropriate for the origin of life

Opportunity has made one of its greatest scientific discoveries so far. Clay minerals in a rock called Esperance clearly indicate that neutral water …

7 Bizarre Ways Kids Amused Themselves Before Video Games

This generation is soft, and uninspired. In the old days, all a kid needed to have a good time was imagination, some throwing knives, and a couple of …

Legend of Zelda

Golden Gate Bridge-sized asteroid to fly by Earth on May 31st

A 1.7-mile long asteroid, about the length of the Golden Gate Bridge, will pass relatively close by Earth on May 31st, NASA scientists announced today. The asteroid poses no danger to Earth or the moon, as it will only get within about 3.6 million miles' range of our planet (about 15 times further …

Your Brain Catches Grammar Errors Even When You Don't Realize It

The pedant within<p>The brain does all kinds of amazing things while you're not paying attention (you know, like regularly remind you to breathe). But it's also engaged in less critical but equally interesting tasks, like correcting the grammar of the person sitting across from you at dinner. A …

Kids with autism spot motion faster - Futurity

U. ROCHESTER / YALE / VANDERBILT (US) — Children with autism see simple movement twice …

To think clearly under stress, focus on values - Futurity

CARNEGIE MELLON (US) — New research provides the first evidence that self-affirmation can protect against …

Research

The Unintentional Urban Farmer

The Amazing Disappearing Magnetic Field of Mars

Spacecraft loaded with instruments will orbit Mars, sending back clues about the planet's climate change.<p><b>Mars owes its dry and dusty appearance</b> to its wispy atmosphere, less than 1 percent of the thickness of the Earth's. But it wasn't always that way: The Red Planet formerly had a much thicker …

Is There Nothing Science Can't Do With E. coli?

Researchers have used the versatile bacteria to do everything from make medicine to power cars<p><b>Most people associate Escherichia coli</b> with food-poisoning scares. Just this month, for example, a frozen-food company recalled millions of pounds of food that could have been tainted with the bacteria.<p>But …

Do we need to change the way we are thinking about mental illness?

NO Simon Wessely, member of the Royal College of Psychiatrists<p>Next week the American Psychiatric Association is publishing its fifth take on the …

How to spot a murderer's brain

In 1987, Adrian Raine, who describes himself as a neurocriminologist, moved from Britain to the US. His emigration was prompted by two things. The …

Mad Genius' Motion Capture System brings Sony's break-apart controller idea to life, and then some

Remember that break-apart DualShock 3 idea for motion control Sony had five years ago? A new company named Mad Genius Controllers has surfaced with a working prototype that shows such a contraption working in spades. The setup uses a splittable controller and a processing unit to enable seamless …

Printable bionic ear sends hearing to the dogs

Scientists have created a 3D-printed cartilage ear with an antenna that extends hearing far beyond the normal human range.<p>Using off-the-shelf 3D …

Meet 'algoraves:' Raves with music generated by artist-controlled algorithmic software

You might never attend one, but keep this bit of information in your back pocket: A new trend today is the ‘algorave,’ in which people dance in a rave-like environment to music generated by algorithms.<p>According to a central algorave website – I abstain from dubbing it ‘official – the goal is to …

How Wearable Computing Will Change Everything, Including Apple

Listen, you tech-savvy, trend-resisting cynic you. I want you to stop dismissing wearable computing as a pointless, narcissistic fad.<p>Wearable computing is not for people too lazy to look at their phones. It’s not a trendy toy for wealthy yuppies. And it’s not about joining Robert Scoble in the …

Robert Scoble

Top 10 Computer Tricks Every Geek Should Know

We’ve talked before about the things every computer user should know how to do, but we geeks are special: we want to go above and beyond, to explore …

Linux

WIRED Space Photo of the Day 2013 | WIRED

Jan. 19, 2014: Solar X-Flare<p>The largest sunspot group of the solar cycle unleashed a large (X1.2 class) flare just when it was facing right towards …

Watching Your Brain Freak Out On A Scanner Calms You Down

People who observed their own brain activity using real-time fMRI feedback were better able to control and reduce their anxiety, a new study says.<p>In a quirky new experiment, researchers at Yale University found that simply showing people what their anxious brains look like was enough to help those …