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Jul 6, 2020

Japan debuts new bullet train that can run during an earthquake

Posted by in category: transportation

The new bullet train can run up to 360 kilometers per hour, a new record set during a test run in 2019, making it one of the fastest trains in the world.


Japan’s latest record-breaking bullet train doesn’t only run faster and smoother — it’s also able to transport passengers to safety in the event of an earthquake.

The N700S — the ‘S’ stands for ‘Supreme’ — entered into service July 1 and serves the Tokaido Shinkansen line, which links Tokyo Station and Shin-Osaka Station in Osaka.

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Jul 6, 2020

City in China’s Inner Mongolia warns after suspected bubonic plague case

Posted by in category: biotech/medical

Sunday’s warning follows four reported cases of plague in people from Inner Mongolia last November, including two of pneumonic plague, a deadlier variant of plague.

The bubonic plague, known as the “Black Death” in the Middle Ages, is a highly infectious and often fatal disease that is spread mostly by rodents.

Plague cases are not uncommon in China, but outbreaks have become increasingly rare. From 2009 to 2018, China reported 26 cases and 11 deaths.

Jul 6, 2020

Fuji envisions 400TB tape drive

Posted by in categories: computing, innovation

Fujifilm announced a technological breakthrough that will allow it to construct a massive 400 terabyte tape cartridge by the end of the decade.

Tape drives currently top out at about 12 terabytes of storage.

The Blocks and Files web site reported that Fujifilm says it can achieve the newer, greater capacities by switching from the standard Barium Ferrite (BaFe) tape coatings to Strontium Ferrite (SrFe).

Jul 6, 2020

New math model could help with systematic predictions like potential coronavirus mutations

Posted by in categories: biotech/medical, genetics, mathematics

Could a mathematical model help predict future mutations of the coronavirus and guide scientists’ research as they rush to develop an effective vaccine? This is a possibility being considered by researchers at the USC Viterbi School of Engineering—Ph. D. students Ruochen Yang and Xiongye Xiao and Paul Bogdan, an associate professor of electrical and computer engineering.

Over the past year, Yang and Bogdan have worked to develop a model that could be used to investigate the relationship between a network and its parts to find patterns and make predictions. Now, Xiao is applying that successful model to the current pandemic. He is examining the RNA sequence of SARS-CoV-2, also known as coronavirus, to determine whether accurate predictions can be made about how its genetic code might change in the future based on past mutations. This research is still in progress and no conclusions have been reached yet.

Published in Nature Scientific Reports, a sister journal of Nature, Yang and Bogdan’s work is detailed in their paper, “Controlling the Multifractal Generating Measures of Complex Networks.”

Jul 6, 2020

Indie Comics Spotlight: Biohacking, transhumanism, and gender identity in ‘The Dark’

Posted by in categories: bioengineering, biotech/medical, cyborgs, government, military, privacy, transhumanism

Sable co-created the story with artist Kristian Donaldson (Unthinkable, The Guild) and Mey Rude, a transgender woman who served as a consulting editor on the project. Sable took some time to talk to SYFY WIRE about biohacking, transhumanism, and how science fiction often predicts the future.


The Dark, by screenwriter and playwright Mark Sable (Unthinkable, Godkillers), is a graphic novel about a world plunged into chaos when a biotech virus pulls everything offline. The plot twists around government conspiracies, techno warfare, biohacking, and the unlikely pair out to stop it before another world war breaks loose. To make it all the scarier, Sable bases his fiction on fact. As a futurist who has consulted with think tanks and The Art of Future Warfare Project, he is well versed in techno warfare scenarios.

The Dark begins in 2035 and follows Master Sergeant Robert Carter, a N.E.O. (Networked Exoskeleton Operator) Marine whose power armor links him to the world’s technology, and whose implants mentally connect him to his unit. He feels what they feel, which proves torturous when his unit is attacked. The Dark takes on a double meaning as the experience leaves him both physically and technologically blind as the world’s tech crashes.

Continue reading “Indie Comics Spotlight: Biohacking, transhumanism, and gender identity in ‘The Dark’” »

Jul 6, 2020

NASA’s Artemis mission aims to land first woman on the Moon by 2024: All you need to know

Posted by in category: space travel

NEW DELHI: NASA’s Moon mission — Artemis — will land the first woman on the Moon by 2024. The Artemis programme is part of America’s broader Moon to Mars exploration approach, in which astronauts will explore the Moon and experience gained there to enable humanity’s next giant leap, sending humans to Mars.

Here is all you need to know about the mission:

What is Artemis?

Jul 6, 2020

New Mathematical Formula Unveiled to Prevent AI From Making Unethical Decisions

Posted by in categories: business, mathematics, robotics/AI

Researchers from the UK and Switzerland have found a mathematical means of helping regulators and business police Artificial Intelligence systems’ biases towards making unethical, and potentially very costly and damaging choices.

The collaborators from the University of Warwick, Imperial College London, and EPFL – Lausanne, along with the strategy firm Sciteb Ltd, believe that in an environment in which decisions are increasingly made without human intervention, there is a very strong incentive to know under what circumstances AI systems might adopt an unethical strategy—and to find and reduce that risk, or eliminate entirely, if possible.

Artificial intelligence (AI) is increasingly deployed in commercial situations. Consider for example using AI to set prices of insurance products to be sold to a particular customer. There are legitimate reasons for setting different prices for different people, but it may also be more profitable to make certain decisions that end up hurting the company.

Jul 6, 2020

Tesla building ‘RNA microfactories’ with coronavirus vaccine maker: Elon Musk

Posted by in categories: biotech/medical, Elon Musk

Elon Musk said Tesla is building “RNA microfactories” for CureVac and other coronavirus vaccine makers.

Jul 5, 2020

This new, super-accurate way to pinpoint our solar system’s center may help spot monster black hole crashes

Posted by in categories: cosmology, physics

Astronomers have found a way to pinpoint our solar system’s center of mass to within a mere 330 feet (100 meters), a recent study reports.

Such precision — equivalent to the width of a human hair on the scale of a football field — could substantially aid the search for powerful gravitational waves that warp our Milky Way galaxy, study team members said.

Jul 5, 2020

“Supernova machine” recreates cosmic blasts in the lab

Posted by in categories: cosmology, physics

Supernovae are some of the most energetic events in the universe, and the resulting nebulas are a favorite for stargazers. To better understand the physics behind them, researchers at Georgia Tech have created a “supernova machine” in the lab.

Stars are basically big volatile balls of gas, sustained for millions of years by a delicate balancing act. Intense gravity wants to pull the matter towards the center, but nuclear fusion in the core is pushing outwards at the same time. Eventually though, the core inevitably runs out of nuclear fuel, and gravity wins the battle.

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