caleb parker

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James Mattis is sworn in as defense secretary, pledges to build alliances

Retired Marine Gen. James N. Mattis was confirmed and sworn in as President Trump’s defense secretary Friday, breaking with decades of precedent as a recently retired general became the Pentagon’s top civilian leader.<p>Mattis, 66, was approved with a 98-1 vote after the presidential inauguration and …

National Security

Xiaomi doesn't 'make a single dime' on phones

The Chinese electronics maker is laying the groundwork for direct sales to US consumers, executive Hugo Barra tells Reuters.<p>Xiaomi's phones sales may have dropped some, but the Chinese device maker isn't worried.<p>"Basically we're giving [handsets] to you without making any money," said Hugo Barra, …

Fantastic Beasts and Where to Find Them review – JK Rowling goes steampunk

We’ve never needed cheering up more; though on the strictly escapist level, this film is maybe compromised by making one of its characters an obnoxious rich New York chump, a charmless lump, or do I mean grump, reliant on his father’s money and nursing political ambitions. “He’s been mentioned as a …

Books

NASA team probes peculiar age-defying star

Scientists initially proposed that the object was an old star surrounded by a surprising cloud typical of the kind that usually accompanies young …

Cosmology

Will the Periodic Table Ever Be Complete?

They didn't teach you this in high school physics.<p>The last time I studied the periodic table was high school chemistry, and since then, more elements have been added to the iconic, colored chart of chemical elements. After scientists recently discovered four new elements, some experts have said the …

I Am Officially in Love With Cockroaches

In the late 1970s, entomologist Coby Schal was in the rainforests of Costa Rica, watching a wasp. Every few minutes, the wasp would soar up into the …

Google's using neural networks to make image files smaller

Somewhere at Google, researchers are blurring the line between reality and fiction. Tell me if you've heard this one, <i>Silicon Valley</i> fans -- a small team builds a neural network for the sole purpose of making media files teeny-tiny. Google's latest experiment isn't exactly the HBO hit's Pied Piper …

Deep Learning

Stocks: 6 things to know before the open

Up, up and away?<p>Here are the six things you need to know before the opening bell rings in New York:<p><b>1. Record run:</b> The Dow Jones industrial average has been climbing for the last eight consecutive trading days. The index is now sitting at its highest level ever following its longest winning streak …

This $50 Smartphone May Be All You Need

Lock screen ads and an inadequate camera aside, the Blu R1 HD sold by Amazon gets the job done<p>In life, you get what you pay for.*<p>*Exceptions: Costco wine, $1 New York City pizza and the Blu R1 HD smartphone, now sold by Amazon for $50. In those cases, the quality of the product far exceeds your low …

Olive Garden

Jupiter came this close to being Earth's second, blood-red sun

But if things had gone a bit differently during the emergence of our solar system, the Juno mission wouldn't be a trip to a planet at all — but a visit to Earth's second local star.<p>Jupiter, according to NASA, is composed of similar materials to the sun: mostly hydrogen and helium. And it was the …