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Jan 3, 2017

Sex exists to avoid disease, study demonstrates

Posted by in categories: biotech/medical, sex

“By comparing clonal and sexual daughters from the same mothers, we found sexually produced offspring get less sick,” Auld said.

PARIS – From an evolutionary perspective, sexual reproduction could be seen as a nonstarter. Compared to cloning, which also exists in nature, it is a major waste of time and energy.

Think of the ungainly, preening peacock — an easy snack for tigers and wild dogs — strutting his stuff to impress the ladies.

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Jan 3, 2017

A Completely New Human Organ Has Just Been Officially Discovered

Posted by in category: biotech/medical

Last year – although a rather grim one by other measures – was a splendid one for research. From gravitational waves to cooing dinosaurs, we’ve uncovered a lot about the world around us, but as a remarkable new study has revealed, there’s a lot within us we’ve yet to discover too.

Writing in The Lancet Gastroenterology & Hepatology, scientists have officially announced the discovery of a new organ inside the human body. That’s right, there’s a brand new organ hiding in our abdomen and it’s only just been classified.

Known as the mesentery (meaning “in the middle of the intestines”), it can be found in our digestive systems. Leonardo da Vinci actually gave one of the first descriptions of it back in the day, but until around 2012 it was thought to be a series of separate structures keeping the intestines attached to the abdominal wall, like a series of support girders.

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Jan 3, 2017

Jurassic Farm: Scientists Are Planning to Resurrect an Extinct Cattle Species

Posted by in category: bioengineering

In Brief

  • The Rewilding Europe project seeks to bring back an extinct cattle species called aurochs which inhabited the wilds of Europe and Asia until 1627.
  • Using back breeding, scientists think in about seven to 10 years we will have a stabilized group of cattle, which will help shape the European landscape.

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Jan 3, 2017

What happens if we pay everyone just to live?

Posted by in category: economics

Think universal basic income is a pipe dream? Experiments all over the world are already showing its potential to transform society for the better.

Leader: “Why you should worry about intelligent machines

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Jan 3, 2017

Can Bitcoin Flourish with a Capped Supply?

Posted by in categories: bitcoin, cryptocurrencies, economics, finance, internet

The answer may be counter-intuitive: Not only can Bitcoin be widely adopted under a supply cap, its trust and integrity are a direct result of a provably limited supply. As a result, it will flourish because it is capped.

Everyone Can Own and Trade a Limited Commodity, IF…

…if it is both measurable and divisible. Bitcoin has a capped supply just as gold has a capped supply. Although both assets will be mined for some time into the future, there is only so much that will ever be uncovered. Thereafter, the total pie cannot grow.

But the transaction units will continue to grow as needed, because the pie is divisible into very, very tiny units:

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Jan 3, 2017

Israel’s ‘flying car’ passenger drone moves closer to delivery

Posted by in categories: drones, military, robotics/AI

After 15 years of development, an Israeli tech firm is optimistic it will finally get its 1,500 kilogramme (1.5 tonne) passenger carrying drone off the ground and into the market by 2020.

The Cormorant, billed as a flying car, is capable of transporting 500 kilogrammes (around half a tonne) of weight and travelling at 185 kilometres per hour. It completed its first automated solo flight over terrain in November. Its total price is estimated at $14 million.

Developers Urban Aeronautics believe the dark green drone, which uses internal rotors rather than helicopter propellers, could evacuate people from hostile environments and/or allow military forces safe access.

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Jan 3, 2017

Scientists Are Attempting to Bring Back an Enormous Ancient Cow

Posted by in category: biotech/medical

Scientists are close to bringing back a huge ancient cattle species called an auroch.

Aurochs roamed Europe for thousands of years until the last of their kind died in the Jaktorow Forest in Poland in 1627.

They were 7 ft (2.13 m) tall and weighed around 1,000kg.

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Jan 3, 2017

HPE’s New Chip Marks a Milestone in Optical Computing

Posted by in category: computing

The experimental 1,000-component optical processor is made for challenges like the “traveling salesman problem”.

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Jan 3, 2017

Who’ll Live Longer: Meat Eaters or Vegetarians?

Posted by in categories: food, life extension

Increasingly the vegetarian diet seems promising in terms of longevity strategy. Here is a short article exploring this idea.

Our ability to live a long life is influenced by a combination of our genes and our environment. In studies that involve identical twins, scientists have estimated that no more than 30 percent of this influence comes from our genes, meaning that the largest group of factors that control how long a person lives is their environment.

Of the many possible environmental factors, few have been as thoroughly studied or debated as our diet. Calorie restriction, for example, is one area that is being investigated.

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Jan 3, 2017

A company you’ve never heard of plans to build the world’s first private space station

Posted by in categories: habitats, space travel

Axiom Space, a recently formed company headed by former ISS program manager Mike Suffredini, plans to send an astronaut to the ISS in 2019 and connect a large multipurpose habitat there in 2020.

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