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Nov 27, 2018

Why suicide is falling around the world, and how to bring it down more

Posted by in categories: biotech/medical, health

For a few people—those who are terminally ill, in severe pain and determined to die—suicide may be the least terrible option. In such circumstances, and with firm safeguards, doctors should be allowed to assist. But many of the 800,000 people who kill themselves each year act in haste, and more could be saved with better health services, labour-market policies and curbs on booze, guns, pesticide and pills. America, in particular, could spare much pain by learning from the progress elsewhere.


Urbanisation, fewer forced marriages and more curbs on the means of self-destruction.

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Nov 27, 2018

Chinese scientist angers just about everyone with gene-editing claims

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

Some researchers say it’s time to allow gene editing, with careful regulation.

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Nov 27, 2018

Sluggish Brain Waves May Be Early Sign of Dementia

Posted by in categories: biotech/medical, neuroscience

Tracking brain wave activity in individuals at high risk for Alzheimer’s disease may be a promising new method for early detection, according to a new Canadian study by researchers at Baycrest Centre for Geriatric Care in Toronto, Ontario.

This is possible because brain waves tend to slow down in certain regions likely to be affected by the disease next, even before neurons have been lost.

The findings, published online in the journal Human Brain Mapping, show that individuals potentially in the early stages of Alzheimer’s disease (mild cognitive impairment) and those with a rare form of language dementia (primary progressive aphasia) exhibited sluggish brainwaves and subtle signs of damage in the brain regions responsible for memory and planning.

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Nov 27, 2018

Elon Musk says there’s a 70% chance he’s going to move to Mars

Posted by in categories: climatology, Elon Musk, engineering, habitats, space travel

Elon Musk wants humans to make it to Mars. With his company SpaceX at his back, he’s pushed forward with some incredibly bold claims about what is possible for mankind on the Red Planet. He’s shown off concepts for Mars settlements and even called out scientists who say climate engineering on the planet is impossible.

Now, in an interview with HBO’s Axios, Musk doubles down on one of the more off-the-wall claims he’s made during his years in the spotlight. Mars, he says, will be his eventual home, and he estimates his odds of moving to the planet at a generous 70%.

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Nov 26, 2018

Wendelstein 7-X fusion reactor keeps its cool en route to record-breaking results

Posted by in category: nuclear energy

Scientists toiling away on the cutting edge Wendelstein 7-X nuclear fusion reactor in Germany have pulled together results from their latest round of testing, with a few records to be found amongst them. Following a series of upgrades, the team is reporting the experimental device has achieved its highest energy density and the longest plasma discharge times for device of this type, marking another step forward in the quest for clean fusion power.

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Nov 26, 2018

Watch the electrifying moment InSight lands on Mars from mission control

Posted by in category: space

Relive the excitement in 360 degrees.

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Nov 26, 2018

There’s a quiet beauty here

Posted by in category: habitats

Looking forward to exploring my new home. go.nasa.gov/InSightRaws #MarsLanding

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Nov 26, 2018

Touchdown on Mars!

Posted by in categories: habitats, space travel

Our NASA InSight spacecraft stuck the #MarsLanding!

Its new home is Elysium Planitia, a still, flat region where it’s set to study seismic waves and heat deep below the surface of the Red Planet for a planned two-year mission.

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Nov 26, 2018

People can sustainably share resources, under some conditions

Posted by in category: futurism

That’s why freedom of movement is one of the key conditions necessary to successfully share resources. Other necessary conditions include low population densities, low market value of the resources, variability in resource distribution and an ethos of sharing.


Sometimes, there is no “tragedy” in the tragedy of the commons, according to a new analysis that challenges a widely accepted theory.

Scientists have long believed that when there is to a shared resource, people will inevitably overuse it, leading to ruin for everyone—an idea known as the “ of the commons.”

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Nov 26, 2018

Our Mars Odyssey orbiter phoned home, relaying the latest news from NASA InSight that indicates that its solar panels are open and collecting sunlight on the Martian surface

Posted by in categories: habitats, solar power, space, sustainability

Also included in the dispatch: this snapshot from the lander’s arm showing the instruments in their new “plain perfect” home. Get the latest: https://go.nasa.gov/2FDGbwu

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