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Jul 29, 2021

2-legged robot developed at Oregon State makes history by completing a 5K

Posted by in category: robotics/AI

CORVALLIS, Ore. – A two-legged robot invented at Oregon State University completed a 5K in just over 52 minutes. Cassie the robot, created by OSU spinout company Agility Robotics, made history with the successful trot. “Cassie, the first bipedal robot to use machine learning to control a running gait on outdoor terrain, completed the 5K on Oregon State’s campus untethered and on a single battery charge,” according to OSU. But it didn’t go off without a hitch.

Jul 29, 2021

World’s cheapest energy storage will be an iron-air battery, says Jeff Bezos-backed start-up

Posted by in categories: chemistry, energy

Form Energy, the billionaire-backed start-up that claimed to have developed an innovative low-cost 150-hour battery, has finally revealed its battery chemistry after more than a year of high-profile secrecy.

The Boston-based company says its first commercial product is a “rechargeable iron-air battery capable of delivering electricity for 100 hours at system costs competitive with conventional power plants and at less than 1/10th the cost of lithium-ion”.

Jul 29, 2021

Melinda French Gates and McKenzie Scott team up to give $40 million to support women

Posted by in categories: business, finance

French Gates and Scott, who were formerly married to Seattle-based tech founders Bill Gates and Jeff Bezos, respectively, have become powerful philanthropists in their own rights. Both women, who are among the richest people in the world, have signed The Giving Pledge, promising to give away the majority of their wealth in their lifetimes.


In a powerful philanthropic pairing, Melinda French Gates and McKenzie Scott have teamed up to direct $40 million to advancing the power and influence of American women over the next decade.

The donation is being awarded to winners of the Equality Can’t Wait Challenge, a competition hosted by French Gates’ investment firm Pivotal Ventures, with financial support from Scott and her husband, Dan Jewett, as well as from the Charles and Lynn Schusterman Family Philanthropies. The challenge billed itself as “the first competition centered on gender and equality in the U.S. with an award of this magnitude and … an opportunity to invest in and empower women leaders.”

Continue reading “Melinda French Gates and McKenzie Scott team up to give $40 million to support women” »

Jul 29, 2021

McAfee: Babuk ransomware decryptor causes encryption ‘beyond repair’

Posted by in categories: cybercrime/malcode, encryption

Babuk announced earlier this year that it would be targeting Linux/UNIX and ESXi or VMware systems with ransomware.

Jul 29, 2021

Electric boat startup Arc wants to make a big splash

Posted by in categories: space travel, sustainability

But does it want to be the “Tesla of boats?”


A new startup called Arc wants to revolutionize the boating world with a battery-powered craft made for watersports. The small startup, which employs a handful of former SpaceX employees, has designed a sharp but pricey boat with a big battery and an aluminum hull.

Jul 29, 2021

Austin’s Silicon Labs sells business unit for $2.75 billion, shifts focus to Internet of Things

Posted by in categories: business, computing, food, internet, security

Austin-based Silicon Labs has sold its infrastructure and automotive business for $2.75 billion to California-based semiconductor maker Skyworks Solutions. Plans for the all-cash deal was initially announced in April.

Silicon Labs primarily designs semiconductors and other silicon devices. CEO Tyson Tuttle said the deal will allow the company to focus on its growing Internet of Things business. Internet of Things, or IoT as it is known in industry shorthand, refers to a range of non-computing devices —from kitchen devices to security systems — that connect to the Internet.

Silcon Labs’ IoT business already serves tens of thousands of customers and works in thousands of applications, but the deal narrows Silicon Labs focus exclusively to that technology.

Continue reading “Austin’s Silicon Labs sells business unit for $2.75 billion, shifts focus to Internet of Things” »

Jul 29, 2021

Earth’s inner core is growing more on one side than the other – here’s why the planet isn’t tipping

Posted by in category: energy

Earth’s core was formed very early in our planet’s 4.5 billion-year history, within the first 200 million years. Gravity pulled the heavier iron to the centre of the young planet, leaving the rocky, silicate minerals to make up the mantle and crust.

Earth’s formation captured a lot of heat within the planet. The loss of this heat, and heating by ongoing radioactive decay, have since driven our planet’s evolution. Heat loss in Earth’s interior drives the vigorous flow in the liquid iron outer core, which creates Earth’s magnetic field. Meanwhile, cooling within Earth’s deep interior helps power plate tectonics, which shape the surface of our planet.

As Earth cooled over time, the temperature at the centre of the planet eventually dropped below the melting point of iron at extreme pressures, and the inner core started to crystallise. Today, the inner core continues to grow at roughly 1mm in radius each year, which equates to the solidification of 8000 tonnes of molten iron every second. In billions of years, this cooling will eventually lead to the whole core becoming solid, leaving Earth without its protective magnetic field.

Continue reading “Earth’s inner core is growing more on one side than the other – here’s why the planet isn’t tipping” »

Jul 29, 2021

Deep learning on computational biology and bioinformatics tutorial: from DNA to protein folding and alphafold2

Posted by in categories: biotech/medical, robotics/AI

AlphaFold 2 paper and code is finally released. This post aims to inspire new generations of Machine Learning (ML) engineers to focus on foundational biological problems.

This post is a collection of core concepts to finally grasp AlphaFold2-like stuff. Our goal is to make this blog post as self-complete as possible in terms of biology. Thus in this article, you will learn about:

Jul 29, 2021

Apple, AMD and Intel are taking gambles with the chip shortage – will they pay off?

Posted by in categories: business, computing

Risky business.


With chip shortages ongoing, some companies are having to change their plans, but could these gambles really pay off?

Continue reading “Apple, AMD and Intel are taking gambles with the chip shortage – will they pay off?” »

Jul 29, 2021

Astronomers catch fizzled-out gamma-ray burst from supernova

Posted by in category: cosmology

A fizzled example of a gamma-ray burst, the most powerful kind of explosion known in the universe, suggests these outbursts can be surprisingly brief, researchers say.

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