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Does Human Evolution Have a Mutation Rate? New Research Says "Yes"

Iss_9 First things first: You're a mutant.  But don't waste your time trying to fly or look through people's clothes, as your amazing mutant powers are "not having pseudopods" and "consisting of more than a single cell."  All of evolution results from random changes in DNA, and now scientists have recorded the current rate of human mutation.

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Is Detection by an Exo Civilization a Threat to Earth? World's Experts Debate -A Galaxy Classic

Headnews_4 Mankind has always been driven by contradictory drives.  The relentless curiosity that pushes us forward and is directly responsible for our progress from caves to  cities.  The fear of change that tells us "hang on, these caves/cities are really nice, we don't want to risk losing them."  There isn't any greater potential threat to the status quo than the discovery of extraterrestrial life, which is why some people would prefer we didn't try.

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Astronomers Zoom in on "Ghost" Black Hole -Equal to One Billion Supernovas

Hdf_cxo_small Bill Murray and Dan Aykroyd don't need to suit up for this one. NASA's Chandra X-ray Observatory has found a cosmic "ghost," and scientists think it is evidence of a huge eruption produced by a supermassive black hole equal in power to a billion supernovas. The source, HDF 130, is over 10 billion light years away and existed at a time 3 billion years after the Big Bang, when galaxies and black holes were forming at a high rate.

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Can Robots be Created With a "Sixth Sense"?

Palette_s-709953 "Technology has overtaken nature in some domains but lags far behind in the cognitive processing of received sense impressions. My dream is to endow robots with multiple sensory modalities. Instead of always building in more cameras, we should also along the way give them additional sensors for sound and touch."

Leo van Hemmen, chair of theoretical biophysics, Technische Universitaet Muenchen.

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Image of the Day: You Name the Cosmos

Ngc4676_hst_2

In further proof that the universe can kick our butt at just about anything, the double galaxies of NGC4676 are putting on a pyrotechnics display that Jerry Bruckheimer couldn't imagine if he mainlined LSD and directly applied two thousand volts to his visual cortex.  They're colliding in a process leading astrophysicists describe as "totally awesome".  They've got a sense of cinema style to it too, drawing the stellar spectacular out in extreme slow-motion - a few hundred million years, now showing in a cosmos near you. We think astronomers could do a better name these fantastic objects. What would you name them?

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The Daily Flash -Eco, Space, Tech (8/31)


3859101274_3133ab8792 Apples 1st Augmented Reality App

The first "real" iPhone AR app has gone live in the iTunes App Store. But it's arrived earlier than expected--weeks before Apple said it would be allowed. The first "real" iPhone AR app has gone live in the iTunes App Store. It's specifically for Parisians. But it's arrived earlier than expected--weeks before Apple said it would be allowed.

Tmnt



500x_backtothefuture_linen GPS With Realtime Traffic

Four days a year and 21% less CO2 emissions. That's what a GPS with real-time traffic information will give to you, and the entire planet. At least, that's what maps maker Navteq says. As you can expect, there's a catch.

500x_Explosion-iphone_02 Are iPhones Really Exploding All Over the World?

We have done some research, and it appears than the rumors of iPhones exploding all around the world—"world" as in "France, UK, and Belgium"—are greatly exaggerated. Here are all the known cases, and Apple's official answer.


NASA's NextGen Astronauts - Bacteria With the Ability to Survive Radiation & Rapidly Repair Its Own DNA

Drad_daly A plot for the next Ridley Scott space thriller? The eye of the next generation HAL 9000? Guess again. NASA is experimenting was an extremeophile bacteria that could survive on another planet. In an Earth lab, Deinococcus radiodurans (D. rad) survive extreme levels of radiation, extreme temperatures, dehydration, and exposure to toxic chemicals.

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Will the Laws of Physics Extend Beyond Our Universe? A Galaxy Classic

N7771biggs Chris Knight, the finest fictional physicist of our time, once said "All science.  No Philosophy.  Wrong."  It's true that an understanding of existence outside of equations is vital for scientists, both in terms of enjoying life and avoiding things like Agent Orange, but beware careless combination of the two.  A science/philosophy mixture can lead to metaphysical claims that the laws of physics are nothing but local zoning ordinances, as demonstrated by Lee Smolin.

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