President Obama signed the largest conservation measure in 15 years today, the Omnibus Public Land Management Act, which designates two million acres of pristine federal lands as wilderness area, prevents oil and gas development on certain other vulnerable lands, and expands the nation's Wild and Scenic Rivers program to protect a thousand miles of rivers.
"This bipartisan bill has been many years in the making, and is one of the most important pieces of natural resource legislation in decades," Obama said at the signing.
Nazi codebreakers shortened the Second World War by two years
Experts Say Ocean Acidification is a “Planet Changer”
A Telescope to the Past as Galileo Visits U.S.
New Breakthrough in Global Warming Plant Production
U.S. unveils Orion spacecraft to take crew to Mars
Scientists successfully spotted and tracked an Earth-impacting asteroid last year, projecting its point of "hitting the planet we live on" a day in advance and scrambling scientific response teams. It's estimated that a major impact occurs every million years (see impact map above). Luckily, last-year's not-quite-death-rock was pretty small and crashed into a desert, which is mostly already dead, so the science response was just "go and look at it." Had it been bigger, our options remain "Have a good time" and "Make jokes about Bruce Willis."
Artificial intelligence investigators have built a fully silicon scale simulation of the human brain. The artificial neurons operate faster than the organic model, are built to learn and adapt, and even have a cool movie-style acronym, FACETS. One thing seems clear: AI researchers watch Terminator daily.
Should we be alarmed at the current massive die-offs being noted in the animal and plant kingdoms? After all, new species arise and old species die off all the time. Its just nature taking its course, right? Not necessarily. The Earth is now entering the sixth mass extinction event in its four-billion-year history, but what’s different about this die-off is that this is the only such event precipitated by a biotic agent: humans.
Recent analysis of the Red Planet's terrain using NASA's Mars Reconnaissance Orbiter and Global Surveyor spacecraft observations revealed what appeared to be by far the largest impact crater ever found in the solar system.
NASA’s Viking orbiters observed in the 1970s that the bottom two-thirds of Mars was about two miles higher in altitude than its top third. Planetary scientists have since bandied about two hypotheses to explain the dichotomy: either some odd internal dynamics of Mars generated a thicker planetary crust in the south, or the northern surface was blown away by a mega-meteor impact.
Electronic Spy Network Focused on Dalai Lama and Embassy Computers
An electronic spy network that has infiltrated the computers of government offices, NGOs and activist groups in more than 100 countries has been surreptitiously stealing documents and eavesdropping on electronic correspondence, say a group of researchers at the University of Toronto.
Shampoo in the water supply triggers growth of deadly drug-resistant bugs
Marjorie Grene, a Leading Philosopher of Biology, Is Dead at 98
Plant Thought to be Extinct Rediscovered in South Africa
Scientists Map the Brain, Gene by Gene
Virtual Sets Move Hollywood Closer to Holodeck
Freaky Speeder Rides the Wind to World Record