Nordson Sealant Equipment improves battery production at every stage

first_imgSponsored by Nordson Sealant EquipmentCustomers rely on Nordson Sealant Equipment to deliver improvements, efficiencies, and solutions for a wide range of dispensing applications in their battery manufacturing processes. Nordson Sealant Equipment provides an industry-leading, field-proven range of automated dispensing solutions for one- and two-part materials used in battery cell bonding, battery cell power distribution, and battery pack assembly. Battery Cell Bonding Battery cells are manufactured in many sizes to fit the end product, the most common shapes being cylindrical and rectangular. While the use of either shape is dependent on the battery pack design, securing the cells into their larger battery modules takes different dispensing approaches and comes with common challenges.Cylindrical battery cells are often challenged by production speed and location accuracy; Nordson’s application and material knowledge, coupled with extensive robotic automation experience, allows it to design engineered solutions that provide the correct number of dispense heads at the flow rate and robotic speed necessary for the application needs.Square battery cells often experience air becoming wrapped around battery cells during a fill or pour. Nordson’s programmable dispense speeds allow for mid-shot adjustments in material flow rate, which allow air to escape from the fill. Speed can be adjusted back to full speed once the material is past the point of concern, allowing necessary production speeds to be achieved.Battery Cell Power DistributionNordson specializes in bonding thermal interface materials between the current circuit and the battery cell module. Applying the exact bead size can be challenging; for long bead requirements of various patterns, the length may exceed the volume of the meter and require reload, resulting in a gap or overlap in the bead. Nordson uses continuous flow meters and can also optimally size the meter to ensure reloads are not necessary before the end of the bead. Intricate bead paths can result in sharp turns where the robot slows down, causing the meter to deposit too much material. Nordson’s servo-driven meters have an auto-flow mode where the flow rate can be adjusted at the same time as the robot, allowing for even material placement along the battery cell or module.Battery Pack Assembly Ensuring a battery cell module provides enough power with the correct form and fit for the end product is no simple task. Typically, numerous modules are placed together to create a larger assembly of modules, also known as a pack. The shape of these packs varies greatly depending on the vehicle or the storage battery’s overall shape and are usually bonded together to reduce vibration problems or sealed to prevent corrosion issues due to moisture.Battery packs are bonded in one of two ways: bead bonding utilizes robotics to apply a precise amount of material to the face of each module; flood methodology simplifies robotic needs by applying material to the base of the entire battery pack to bond each module in place. A large meter needs to be mounted to the robot for both methods. Nordson’s range of continuous flow meters can be used for dispense of one- or two-component epoxies.Battery modules are sealed with a bead that encapsulates the battery pack module or by a bead placed between a top and bottom cell module. Both sealing methods require accurate bead placement to ensure assembly compression does not overflow into battery cells or outside of the pack. Nordson’s variety of nozzles are specifically designed for precision application in difficult-to-access channels or locations. Source: Electric Vehicles Magazine Industry partnershipsNordson Sealant Equipment works alongside adhesive manufacturers and automation/robot suppliers to ensure our solution is uniquely engineered to the customer’s application. Our volume displacement rod metering technology permits dispensing thermal gels, or other heavily filled materials, without packing out or wearing the equipment over time. Additionally, a wide range of wetted components and seal offerings allows our dispense equipment to be compatible with battery assembly materials across the globe, with many material suppliers incorporating our technology in their own test laboratories.As the global leaders in metering, mixing, and dispensing solutions for battery cell manufacturing applications, Nordson encourages early involvement in projects.Please reach out to Nordson’s team of experts to improve your production capabilities and performance.center_img Sponsored by Nordson Sealant Equipmentlast_img read more

MA Round Up AKK VE Find Plenty of Deal Work

first_imgThe week after Labor Day signified the return to work for a lot of Texas deal lawyers, despite the residual damage in Houston from Hurricane Harvey. Herewith are some highlights of recent deals that portend a busy fall, at least in the energy sector . . .You must be a subscriber to The Texas Lawbook to access this content. Username Remember me Not a subscriber? Sign up for The Texas Lawbook.center_img Lost your password? Passwordlast_img

Lawyer Discipline State Bar of Texas

first_img Lost your password? Password The State Bar of Texas has announced its most recent disciplinary actions. According to the state bar, five judges were disciplined, including one judicial suspension. In addition, seven Texas lawyers were suspended and two more received public reprimands . . .You must be a subscriber to The Texas Lawbook to access this content. Remember mecenter_img Username Not a subscriber? Sign up for The Texas Lawbook.last_img

Ageism and Oprah Winfrey

first_imgby, Ronni Bennett, ChangingAging ContributorTweetShareShareEmail0 Sharescategory_bug_ageism.gif Clearly, I have not been paying attention. I had thought Oprah Winfrey made a big deal a few years ago about retiring from television. I was greatly relieved then because throughout the 25 or 30 years of her TV show, Oprah spent countless hours foisting useless anti-aging remedies on her viewers.I assumed all that was finally finished until a couple of weeks ago when I began seeing promos for Oprah. It took me awhile to figure out that she’s got another network now and is doing it all over again.I had been making notes for an update to past posts here about her decades of extolling the virtues of eternal youth at any cost but I then ran across a post I could have written word-for-word. Kavan Peterson, a friend who is the editor at geriatrician Bill Thomas’s website, ChangingAging, beat me to it:”Let’s leave aside the fact that Oprah is arguably one of the most powerful promoters of anti-aging products in the industry,” writes Kavan.“Let’s forget about the dozens of episodes of her talk show focused on extreme and even dangerous anti-aging quackery, featuring anti-aging wingnuts like Suzanne Somers. And let’s not even mention the anti-aging guru she created, Dr. Oz.”Took the words right out of my mouth, Kavan. He was reacting to this recent video from Oprah in which she tries to pivot toward embracing aging:  But as Kavan points out, Winfrey does not have the slightest clue that the word “still” – as in, she is STILL active and vibrant – is condescending and demeaning.“Translation,” writes Kavan, “you need to still be able to do stuff to matter when you’re old.”If you can’t do stuff anymore, Oprah apparently does not see your or anyone else’s worth.Now that she’s getting up there in years (57), Oprah may eventually make some progress in understanding growing old and with the appropriate attitude could even undo some of the damage she has done to elders promoting the likes of Somers and Oz. We will have to wait and see.Meanwhile, Kavan pretty much nailed what I would have written so you should go read his piece.At The Elder Storytelling Place today, Lyn Burnstine – May Sarton: A Personal Remembrance Related PostsReader Comment: Give Oprah CreditI am writing because I read your recent ChangingAging blog post about Oprah Winfrey, and I have to say I believe you are being too hard on her.Better Late Than Never Oprah, I GuessOprah is trying to change her tune on aging but she’s a day late and an apology short. In a much-touted video on Huffington Post Oprah extols the “blessings” of aging, but if you listen and look carefully her monologue is laced with anti-aging bias.Oh No Oprah!For those who wondered why I was never invited to discuss pro-aging with television host Oprah Winfrey, here is your answer…. The anti-aging issue of O, The Oprah Magazine is on newsstands now.  O Magazine unveils The NEW Science of Aging for our minds and bodies, along with tips from…TweetShareShareEmail0 SharesTags: Ageism ChangingAging oprahlast_img read more

New tool predicts the lifetime risk of Alzheimers

first_imgBy Sally Robertson, B.Sc.May 22 2018A new study funded by the National Institutes of Health has shown that the lifetime risk of developing Alzheimer’s disease significantly varies depending on age, gender and the presence of any signs or symptoms of dementia.Image Credit: Kateryna Kon/Shutterstock.comThe study authors say this is the first time that lifetime risk estimates have taken into consideration the biological changes that occur in the brain up to 20 years before the actual symptoms of Alzheimer’s disease dementia develop.These early changes are referred to as preclinical Alzheimer’s disease, a designation that is currently only used by researchers until further evidence is produced to determine whether it can be used to predict whether dementia symptoms will develop.After assessing the existing scientific literature, which included some of the largest longitudinal studies available, Ron Brookmeyer (UCLA School of Public Health, Los Angeles) and colleagues developed a computerized mathematical model that could determine the likelihood of people progressing in the continuum of the disease.The results were recently published in Alzheimer’s & Dementia: The Journal of the Alzheimer’s Association.One example from the study showed that a man aged 70 years who has amyloid plaques, but no signs of neurodegeneration or memory loss, is at a 19.9% lifetime risk of developing clinical symptoms of the disease.However, if he also has neurodegeneration, the risk rises to 31.3% and if mild cognitive impairment (MCI) is also present, the risk is increased to 86%. He adds that the high mortality rates in elderly populations are also an important factor, since these individuals are likely to die of other causes.For example, a 90-year-old female who has amyloid plaques has an 8.4% lifetime risk of developing clinical symptoms, whereas a 65-year-old female with the plaques has a lifetime risk of 29.3%. The lower risk for the female aged 90 is explained by her shorter life expectancy.For the same 65-year-old female with amyloid plaques, the 10-year risk of disease symptoms is 2.5%. Females tend to have higher lifetime risk compared with men because they live for longer.Brookmeyer says the lifetime and 10-year risks serve as indicators of the likelihood a person will develop Alzheimer’s disease dementia based on their age and screenings for amyloid deposits, neurodegeneration and the presence or absence of MCI or any combination of those three.Among both men and women, a combination of all three is associated with the greatest risk of developing symptoms. What we found in this research is that people with preclinical Alzheimer’s disease dementia may never experience any clinical symptoms during their lifetimes because of its long and variable preclinical period.”Ron Brookmeyer, UCLA School of Public Health Just as there are risk predictors for whether you might have a heart attack, it will be important in the future to measure the likelihood that someone will develop Alzheimer’s disease. For example, those people with the highest 10-year risk of getting Alzheimer’s dementia would be high priority to volunteer for clinical trials evaluating Alzheimer’s medications or other therapies.”Mario Carrillo, Chief Scientific officer of the Alzheimer’s Association Source:https://www.eurekalert.org/pub_releases/2018-05/aa-mel051818.phplast_img read more

Researchers uncover racial differences in debilitating itchy skin condition

first_imgJun 14 2018An international team led by Johns Hopkins Medicine researchers has conducted what is believed to be the largest detailed published study of people with a poorly understood skin condition known as prurigo nodularis (PN). Such studies collect information on a whole subset of people at once and at a particular point in time.Results of their analysis were highlighted in an oral presentation at the International Investigative Dermatology Conference in May 2018 and were published on May 4 by the Journal of the American Academy of Dermatology. Their results provide some of the first published reliable information from a racially diverse population about who likely develops this chronic disease, which is characterized by intensely itchy nodules that develop on the arms and legs that can generalize throughout the body.The prevalence of PN remains unknown as the condition has been understudied compared with other inflammatory skin diseases, and its origins, causes and treatment are still largely unexplored. However, says study leader Shawn Kwatra, M.D., assistant professor of dermatology at the Johns Hopkins University School of Medicine, PN’s impact is significant.”These are patients whose lives have been devastated by an unbearable, persistent itch that dramatically reduces quality of life on par with the most severe diseases treated by our specialty,” he says.Besides the immense discomfort from itching and scratching, Kwatra explains, PN interferes with sleep and affects social interactions with people who may be (needlessly) afraid of contracting this noninfectious disease. Despite its severe impact, he adds, PN has been largely ignored by scientists.To learn more about it, he and his colleagues conducted a detailed study of data from 909 adults with PN over a five-year period. There were 475 females and 434 males. Of the participants, nearly half were African American, about 42% were white, and about 3% were Asian.In addition to demographic information, the investigators extracted details of the patient group’s comorbidities, or other medical problems these patients had at the same time as PN. The majority of patients, nearly half, were between 51 and 65 years old. The findings also suggest that the condition disproportionately affects African-Americans between ages 50 and 65 as compared with the general population.Related StoriesHair loss could soon be a thing of the past, say researchersLoose double-stranded RNA molecules spur skin rejuvenationScientists develop accurate, wearable voice recognition devicePN was more prevalent in African-Americans, but not whites, with HIV infection. African-Americans with PN in the patient group were 10.5 times more likely to have HIV than race-matched controls with atopic dermatitis and eight times more likely to have HIV than African-American patients with psoriasis who were treated during this time period.PN patients were also 2.8, 4.7 and 9.9 times more likely to have diabetes, chronic kidney disease and hepatitis C than patients with atopic dermatitis, respectively. Further, patients with PN were nearly three times more likely to have clinical depression compared with patients with atopic dermatitis and 2.4 times more likely to have depression than patients with psoriasis.The team suggests their information may be used not only in the clinical care of PN patients, but forms a basis for ongoing translational studies to develop novel treatments for the disorder, which has no FDA-approved therapy or consistently effective treatment.Kwatra cautions that such associations do not demonstrate that PN causes these disorders, or vice versa. More research will be necessary to tease out whether and why these various conditions are linked, he says, which could eventually lead to a better understanding of the mechanism of PN and better targeted treatments.However, he adds, knowing the connections between PN and various health conditions could lead physicians to give patients more thorough evaluations to check for other conditions once they’re diagnosed with PN.Current systemic treatments for PN include phototherapy, neuroactive agents such as gabapentin and pregabalin, and systemic immunosuppressants such as methotrexate and cyclosporine. As PN is associated with dermatologic conditions such as atopic dermatitis in African-Americans, as well as many systemic conditions, further study is needed to determine the exact prevalence.Source: https://www.hopkinsmedicine.org/news/media/releases/racial_differences_uncovered_in_debilitating_itchy_skin_conditionlast_img read more

Researchers aim to investigate what makes some individuals to keep going in

first_imgJul 23 2018The ability to ‘Keep Calm and Carry On’ could explain why some people suffer less depression and anxiety when faced with adversity, research has discovered.Now researchers from the University of Leicester and De Montfort University aim to investigate further what attributes enable individuals to simply ‘keep going’ in the way they do after an incident.The researchers are specifically investigating the impact of cybercrime and levels of ‘resistance’ to such crimes.They identified that certain individuals had a particular type of resilience – which they described as ecological resistance – that was related to both lower levels of depression and anxiety feelings around an incident of cybercrime.The researchers said: “Ecological resilience is the ability to absorb disturbance or stress, and reorganize one’s life whilst undergoing this disturbance or stress, and keep focussed on everyday life to essentially retain and perform the same functions in life. Respondents who score high on assessment of this type of resilience agree with statements such as “I always give all I can, regardless of what may happen” and “No matter what happens, I find ways to get things done”.”The study is being led by Professor John Maltby from the University of Leicester and Sally Chivers from the University of Leicester and De Montfort University.Professor Maltby said: “This is a potentially exciting finding, as it points to the possible psychological resilience mechanism that helps some individualsdeal with being a victim of cyber fraud. This is important because it could provide the basis of work to help victims of cybercrime.”To investigate this further, the researchers are inviting victims of cyber fraud to take part in a survey: www.fraudsurvey.netSally Chivers said: “We don’t know what individuals are doing that gives them the ability to keep functioning, to find out what it is people do to just keep going in the way after a fraud incident. Therefore, we are launching a nationwide survey to see if we can identify the things that people do to remain strong-willed and manage to get things done after being a victim of fraud.”Related StoriesResearch sheds light on sun-induced DNA damage and repairAMSBIO offers new, best-in-class CAR-T cell range for research and immunotherapySocial media use and television viewing linked to rise in adolescent depressive symptomsFor the year ending December 2017 the Crime Survey for England & Wales (CSEW) shows 3.2 million fraud offences. Over half of those fraud incidents were cyber-related(56% or 1.8 million incidents). These figures are based on the results of public surveys.Formally recorded crime for the same year ending December 2017 shows 639,437 offences of fraud; these cases are recorded by the National Fraud Intelligence Bureau (NFIB) including offences reported to Action Fraud.The offences reported to Action Fraud showed increases in “advance fee payment fraud” (up 32% to 52,469 offences) and “consumer and retail fraud” (up 4% to 105,921 offences).As part of a wider survey of over 1800 USA respondents, 185 (10.1%) reported they had been a victim of financial fraud at least once within the previous year. When choosing the most serious (in terms of money lost), of the 185, 34.1% had had their card or account details stolen, 22.2% were victims of phishing, 20.0% were victims of hacking, 17.3% were victims of an advance fee scam, and 6.5% claimed they were victims of blackmail. 49.2% of the sample reported the value of money stolen was between $1 to $100, however 8.1% of the sample reported losing sums of over $2000.Sally Chivers added: “There is so much we don’t know. We don’t know for example how this translates to the UK. We’d like anyone who has been a victim of cyber fraud to take part in a survey. We don’t mind whether you formally recorded or reported the incident at the time; we’re interested in your views either way.”Source: https://le.ac.uklast_img read more

Prenatal Tdap vaccination not linked with increased risk of autism in children

first_imgAug 13 2018A Kaiser Permanente study of more than 80,000 children born over a 4-year period showed that the prenatal Tdap vaccination (tetanus, diphtheria, acellular pertussis) was not associated with increased risk of autism spectrum disorder in children. The study was published today in Pediatrics.”Infants are at the highest risk of hospitalization and death among any population subgroup after contracting a pertussis infection, a highly contagious respiratory disease also known as the whooping cough,” said Tracy A. Becerra-Culqui, PhD, a post-doctoral research fellow with Kaiser Permanente Southern California’s Department of Research & Evaluation and lead author of the study. “With waning immunity against pertussis in the United States, it has become very important for pregnant women to be immunized against pertussis. It is an immunity they pass on to their unborn baby.””Pregnant women can be reassured by this study that there is no indication of an increased risk of autism spectrum disorder in children after being exposed prenatally to the Tdap vaccine,” Becerra-Culqui added.The Advisory Committee on Immunization Practices, which provides guidance on the use of vaccines for the United States, recommends pregnant women receive the Tdap vaccine to prevent pertussis infection, but some women still hesitate.Kaiser Permanente researchers were able to comprehensively study the hypothesized link between Tdap and autism because of the organization’s large and diverse patient population. In Southern California, Kaiser Permanente provides health care in 15 hospitals and about 220 medical offices to approximately 4.4 million members who are broadly representative of the area’s population. Recommended vaccinations are free to all members.Related StoriesNeuroscientists find anatomical link between cognitive and perceptual symptoms in autismTransgender and non-binary individuals more likely to display autistic traits, study findsTransgenerational BPA exposure may contribute to autism, study findsThis retrospective cohort study looked at the autism diagnosis for children born at Kaiser Permanente hospitals in Southern California between Jan. 1, 2011 and Dec. 31, 2014.The study included 81,993 children and found that: “The link between vaccination and development of autism has been refuted by many rigorous scientific investigations. Unfortunately, the misconceptions still generate concerns,” said the paper’s senior author, Hung Fu Tseng, PhD, of the Department of Research & Evaluation.”Given the increasing practice to vaccinate pregnant women with Tdap vaccine, it was important to address the concern of a link between maternal vaccination and subsequent development of autism spectrum disorder in children,” he added. “We hope that our findings reassure parents that Tdap vaccination during pregnancy was not associated with autism in children.” Source:https://share.kaiserpermanente.org/article/tdap-vaccination-for-pregnant-women-does-not-increase-risk-of-autism-kaiser-permanente-study-finds/center_img Prenatal Tdap vaccination coverage ranged from 26 percent for the 2012 birth cohort to 79 percent for the 2014 birth cohort. The autism spectrum disorder incidence rate in children was 1.5 percent in the maternal Tdap vaccinated group and 1.8 percent in the maternal unvaccinated group, comparable to autism rates in the United States (1.7 percent). Analyses of the data extracted from electronic health records showed that Tdap vaccination during pregnancy was not associated with increased autism spectrum disorder risk in children. Results were consistent across study birth years and among first-born children.last_img read more

Keck Medicine of USCs hospitals ranked among nations best for the 10th

first_imgAug 14 2018For the 10th consecutive year, Keck Medicine of USC’s hospitals have been ranked among the country’s Best Hospitals by U.S. News & World Report. The annual rankings encompass overall patient care and specialized treatment areas ranging from cancer to urology. This year, Keck Medical Center of USC, which includes Keck Hospital of USC and USC Norris Cancer Hospital, was ranked among the top 50 nationwide in nine specialties as well as the top three in metro Los Angeles and the top seven in California.Related StoriesChaos in the house and asthma in children – the connectionDon’t ignore diastolic blood pressure values, say researchersMosquito surveillance in Madagascar reveals new insight into malaria transmissionAt No. 9, urology was the medical center’s highest-ranked specialty. Cancer was ranked No. 17, making it the highest-ranked cancer specialty in Southern California.Seven service lines -; ophthalmology (No. 12), geriatrics (No. 17), orthopaedics (No. 22), neurology and neurosurgery (No. 26), gynecology (No. 35), nephrology (No. 35, in a three-way tie) and cardiology and heart surgery (No. 45) -; also placed in the nation’s top 50.”This year’s U.S. News Best Hospitals rankings reflect Keck Medicine of USC’s steady ascension to being one of the top academic medical centers in the country,” says Tom Jackiewicz, CEO of Keck Medicine of USC. “Our world-class physicians, nurses, researchers and staff, who are deeply committed to delivering exceptional patient-centered care, are at the heart of our continuing success.”For this year’s rankings, U.S. News evaluated more than 4,500 medical centers nationwide. In the 16 specialty areas, only 158 hospitals were ranked in at least one specialty. The methodology for the rankings included several care-related indicators, including risk-adjusted mortality, volume, patient safety and quality of nursing care. Best Hospital rankings are produced by U.S. News with RTI International, a research firm based in Research Triangle Park, North Carolina.The 2018–2019 Best Hospitals rankings are available at health.usnews.com/best-hospitals and will appear in the forthcoming U.S. News Best Hospitals 2019 guidebook. Source:https://keck.usc.edulast_img read more

Announcing … The 2014 Dance Your PhD Contest

The dreaded question. “So, what’s your Ph.D. research about?” You take a deep breath and launch into the explanation. People’s eyes begin to glaze over …At times like these, don’t you wish you could just turn to the nearest computer and show people a video of your Ph.D. thesis interpreted in dance form?Now you can! And while you’re at it, you can win $1000 and a free trip to California, achieve immortal geek fame on the Internet, and be recognized by Science for your effort. Sign up for our daily newsletter Get more great content like this delivered right to you! Country Country * Afghanistan Aland Islands Albania Algeria Andorra Angola Anguilla Antarctica Antigua and Barbuda Argentina Armenia Aruba Australia Austria Azerbaijan Bahamas Bahrain Bangladesh Barbados Belarus Belgium Belize Benin Bermuda Bhutan Bolivia, Plurinational State of Bonaire, Sint Eustatius and Saba Bosnia and Herzegovina Botswana Bouvet Island Brazil British Indian Ocean Territory Brunei Darussalam Bulgaria Burkina Faso Burundi Cambodia Cameroon Canada Cape Verde Cayman Islands Central African Republic Chad Chile China Christmas Island Cocos (Keeling) Islands Colombia Comoros Congo Congo, the Democratic Republic of the Cook Islands Costa Rica Cote d’Ivoire Croatia Cuba Curaçao Cyprus Czech Republic Denmark Djibouti Dominica Dominican Republic Ecuador Egypt El Salvador Equatorial Guinea Eritrea Estonia Ethiopia Falkland Islands (Malvinas) Faroe Islands Fiji Finland France French Guiana French Polynesia French Southern Territories Gabon Gambia Georgia Germany Ghana Gibraltar Greece Greenland Grenada Guadeloupe Guatemala Guernsey Guinea Guinea-Bissau Guyana Haiti Heard Island and McDonald Islands Holy See (Vatican City State) Honduras Hungary Iceland India Indonesia Iran, Islamic Republic of Iraq Ireland Isle of Man Israel Italy Jamaica Japan Jersey Jordan Kazakhstan Kenya Kiribati Korea, Democratic People’s Republic of Korea, Republic of Kuwait Kyrgyzstan Lao People’s Democratic Republic Latvia Lebanon Lesotho Liberia Libyan Arab Jamahiriya Liechtenstein Lithuania Luxembourg Macao Macedonia, the former Yugoslav Republic of Madagascar Malawi Malaysia Maldives Mali Malta Martinique Mauritania Mauritius Mayotte Mexico Moldova, Republic of Monaco Mongolia Montenegro Montserrat Morocco Mozambique Myanmar Namibia Nauru Nepal Netherlands New Caledonia New Zealand Nicaragua Niger Nigeria Niue Norfolk Island Norway Oman Pakistan Palestine Panama Papua New Guinea Paraguay Peru Philippines Pitcairn Poland Portugal Qatar Reunion Romania Russian Federation Rwanda Saint Barthélemy Saint Helena, Ascension and Tristan da Cunha Saint Kitts and Nevis Saint Lucia Saint Martin (French part) Saint Pierre and Miquelon Saint Vincent and the Grenadines Samoa San Marino Sao Tome and Principe Saudi Arabia Senegal Serbia Seychelles Sierra Leone Singapore Sint Maarten (Dutch part) Slovakia Slovenia Solomon Islands Somalia South Africa South Georgia and the South Sandwich Islands South Sudan Spain Sri Lanka Sudan Suriname Svalbard and Jan Mayen Swaziland Sweden Switzerland Syrian Arab Republic Taiwan Tajikistan Tanzania, United Republic of Thailand Timor-Leste Togo Tokelau Tonga Trinidad and Tobago Tunisia Turkey Turkmenistan Turks and Caicos Islands Tuvalu Uganda Ukraine United Arab Emirates United Kingdom United States Uruguay Uzbekistan Vanuatu Venezuela, Bolivarian Republic of Vietnam Virgin Islands, British Wallis and Futuna Western Sahara Yemen Zambia Zimbabwe Click to view the privacy policy. Required fields are indicated by an asterisk (*) This is the 7th year of the contest sponsored by AAAS and Science, which challenges you to explain your Ph.D. research without PowerPoint or jargon—in fact with no talking at all. It doesn’t matter if you’re just starting your Ph.D. or you completed it decades ago.It’s not as hard as it sounds. Take a look at the Ph.D. dance of Cedric Tan, who created a dance video based on his University of Oxford Ph.D. thesis about sperm competition:As in previous years, this is a dance-off between the major branches of science (very loosely defined): physics, chemistry, biology, and social sciences. The winner of each branch gets $500. If your Ph.D. is the best overall, you get an additional $500 and a free trip to Stanford University in spring 2015 (travel and hotel covered by HighWire Press) to screen your Ph.D. dance.The deadline for submission is 29 September 2014.To enter the contest, follow the instructions here.Good luck, scientists. We look forward to seeing you move! Email read more

Tiny sea creatures are making clouds over the Southern Ocean

first_img Click to view the privacy policy. Required fields are indicated by an asterisk (*) Country * Afghanistan Aland Islands Albania Algeria Andorra Angola Anguilla Antarctica Antigua and Barbuda Argentina Armenia Aruba Australia Austria Azerbaijan Bahamas Bahrain Bangladesh Barbados Belarus Belgium Belize Benin Bermuda Bhutan Bolivia, Plurinational State of Bonaire, Sint Eustatius and Saba Bosnia and Herzegovina Botswana Bouvet Island Brazil British Indian Ocean Territory Brunei Darussalam Bulgaria Burkina Faso Burundi Cambodia Cameroon Canada Cape Verde Cayman Islands Central African Republic Chad Chile China Christmas Island Cocos (Keeling) Islands Colombia Comoros Congo Congo, the Democratic Republic of the Cook Islands Costa Rica Cote d’Ivoire Croatia Cuba Curaçao Cyprus Czech Republic Denmark Djibouti Dominica Dominican Republic Ecuador Egypt El Salvador Equatorial Guinea Eritrea Estonia Ethiopia Falkland Islands (Malvinas) Faroe Islands Fiji Finland France French Guiana French Polynesia French Southern Territories Gabon Gambia Georgia Germany Ghana Gibraltar Greece Greenland Grenada Guadeloupe Guatemala Guernsey Guinea Guinea-Bissau Guyana Haiti Heard Island and McDonald Islands Holy See (Vatican City State) Honduras Hungary Iceland India Indonesia Iran, Islamic Republic of Iraq Ireland Isle of Man Israel Italy Jamaica Japan Jersey Jordan Kazakhstan Kenya Kiribati Korea, Democratic People’s Republic of Korea, Republic of Kuwait Kyrgyzstan Lao People’s Democratic Republic Latvia Lebanon Lesotho Liberia Libyan Arab Jamahiriya Liechtenstein Lithuania Luxembourg Macao Macedonia, the former Yugoslav Republic of Madagascar Malawi Malaysia Maldives Mali Malta Martinique Mauritania Mauritius Mayotte Mexico Moldova, Republic of Monaco Mongolia Montenegro Montserrat Morocco Mozambique Myanmar Namibia Nauru Nepal Netherlands New Caledonia New Zealand Nicaragua Niger Nigeria Niue Norfolk Island Norway Oman Pakistan Palestine Panama Papua New Guinea Paraguay Peru Philippines Pitcairn Poland Portugal Qatar Reunion Romania Russian Federation Rwanda Saint Barthélemy Saint Helena, Ascension and Tristan da Cunha Saint Kitts and Nevis Saint Lucia Saint Martin (French part) Saint Pierre and Miquelon Saint Vincent and the Grenadines Samoa San Marino Sao Tome and Principe Saudi Arabia Senegal Serbia Seychelles Sierra Leone Singapore Sint Maarten (Dutch part) Slovakia Slovenia Solomon Islands Somalia South Africa South Georgia and the South Sandwich Islands South Sudan Spain Sri Lanka Sudan Suriname Svalbard and Jan Mayen Swaziland Sweden Switzerland Syrian Arab Republic Taiwan Tajikistan Tanzania, United Republic of Thailand Timor-Leste Togo Tokelau Tonga Trinidad and Tobago Tunisia Turkey Turkmenistan Turks and Caicos Islands Tuvalu Uganda Ukraine United Arab Emirates United Kingdom United States Uruguay Uzbekistan Vanuatu Venezuela, Bolivarian Republic of Vietnam Virgin Islands, British Wallis and Futuna Western Sahara Yemen Zambia Zimbabwe Email The Southern Ocean is the cloudiest region on Earth, almost completely blanketed yearround. But the cause might be surprising: tiny marine organisms called phytoplankton, which live in the ocean’s stormy waters. A new study has measured how particles and gases emitted by these creatures enter the atmosphere and become the seeds of clouds. The study represents the first large-scale correlation between biological activity in the Southern Ocean and cloud formation. Establishing that link is an important first step toward understanding a longstanding question in climate modeling: the role of clouds and tiny air particles called aerosols in global climate change. Clouds and aerosols are two of the great wild cards in climate models, and divining their impact on climate is even more complex when it comes to how they interact with each other. Soot is one type of aerosol produced by human activities, but there are also natural aerosols—sea spray, sulfate, or ammonium salts—in the atmosphere. These particles all form the “seeds” around which water vapor condenses and forms tiny droplets that turn into clouds. Daniel McCoy center_img Sign up for our daily newsletter Get more great content like this delivered right to you! Country Diagram of the proposed linkage between clouds and biological activity in the Southern Ocean, including potential sources of cloud condensation nuclei (dimethyl sulfide, sea spray, sea salt). The dimethyl sulfide transforms into sulfate in the atmosphere; sulfate aerosols can also be produced by both volcanoes and human activities. Clouds can play a key role in climate—but a complicated one. Low-lying clouds tend to cool the planet by acting as reflectors that bounce solar radiation back into space, whereas higher clouds can actually trap heat and enhance warming. In the Southern Ocean, climate models have been particularly poor at capturing clouds’ influence, by tending to estimate less reflected radiation than actually exists. To improve these models, scientists will need to understand more about cloud-forming aerosols and how they have altered climate over the past 200 years. But that’s difficult to track without knowing how many “natural” aerosols were in the atmosphere prior to industrialization.That matters because climate sensitivity to greenhouse gas inputs depends, in part, on aerosol concentrations, says Susannah Burrows, an atmospheric scientist at the Pacific Northwest National Laboratory in Richland, Washington, and a co-author of the new study. “If you had a higher preindustrial concentration of aerosols, then human perturbations to aerosols would have a smaller impact.”That’s where the Southern Ocean comes in. In addition to being the cloudiest place on Earth, it’s also one of the cleanest, relatively untouched by human activity. That makes it “a fantastic laboratory for looking at aerosol-cloud interactions,” says Greg McFarquhar, a cloud physicist at the University of Illinois, Urbana-Champaign, who was not involved in the new study.Scientists have postulated that marine organisms are a significant natural source of atmospheric aerosols for decades, but few studies have tried to quantify this. So atmospheric scientist Daniel McCoy of the University of Washington in Seattle, along with Burrows and other colleagues, turned to satellite data. The Moderate Resolution Imaging Spectroradiometer instrument on NASA’s Terra satellite has data on cloud droplets in the atmosphere over a broad swath of the northern Southern Ocean from 35° south to 55° south. The researchers compared these data with the region’s concentrations of chlorophyll a, a type of chlorophyll that often serves as a proxy for biological activity within the oceans.What they found was an unambiguous link between patches of ocean with high biological activity and cloudiness. On average, the  ocean life boosts the number of cloud droplets by about 60% annually, the team reports online today in Science Advances. In summer, the effect is strongest—cloud formation is likely doubled as the phytoplankton kick into high gear. The potential to reflect energy back into space is also strongest in summer, as more bright reflective clouds form right when the incoming radiation is also strongest, McCoy says. That ultimately translates into additional reflected solar radiation of about 10 watts per square meter—comparable to the amount of reflected energy in the northern hemisphere due to heavy pollution.The team also sought to understand more about the underlying mechanisms by which phytoplankton helps form clouds. “There are at least two ways in which phytoplankton can affect aerosols in the atmosphere,” Burrows says. One is through the emission of dimethyl sulfide gas by phytoplankton. In the atmosphere, that gas is chemically transformed to sulfate, a highly efficient cloud condensation nucleus. The second way is through sea spray: Organic matter in the ocean collects on the skins of tiny bubbles in surface waves; when the waters churn sea spray into the atmosphere, they also send up these loaded bubbles, which also serve as cloud condensation nuclei. The researchers found that from 35° south to 45° south, water droplets formed mainly due to sulfate aerosols, whereas further south, in the 45° to 55° swath of ocean, organic matter in the sea spray was the primary source of cloud seeds.These findings are an important first step, McFarquhar says: “This paper has done a great job in documenting the seasonal and spatial correlations” and in demonstrating that both sulfate aerosols and organic matter are important to cloud formation in the Southern Ocean. But, he adds, we now need to understand why. To do a better job and improve the climate models, scientists simply need more direct observations of the aerosols’ physical and chemical properties as well as those of the clouds themselves, he says.An effort is afoot to collect such data in the Southern Ocean—an international project called SOCRATES (Southern Ocean Clouds, Radiation, Aerosol Transport Experimental Study), on which McFarquhar is a member of the planning team. The project is currently seeking funding from the National Science Foundation. Data such as these will be essential, he says, to get a more detailed picture of the mechanisms of cloud formation. “Ultimately, that’s the only way to represent aerosol-cloud interactions in models.”last_img read more

As massive Zika vaccine trial struggles researchers revive plan to intentionally infect

first_img North America MARIO TAMA/GETTY IMAGES January2016 January2017May2017 0 5000 10,000 15,000 20,000 25,000 30,000 To date, 1380 participants have enrolled in the trial, which tests a vaccine containing a small circular piece of DNA that holds two Zika genes. From the outset, the researchers had planned to open new trial sites at infection hot spots, if needed. But new cases have dropped to a trickle throughout the Americas. Email As massive Zika vaccine trial struggles, researchers revive plan to intentionally infect humans Further complicating the trial, many people throughout Latin America and the Caribbean have already been infected with Zika and recovered, which has left them immune to the virus and hence ineligible for vaccine trials. “We have problems finding people to participate,” Kallás says. Indeed, nearly 50% of 2147 Nicaraguans studied in Managua—which is not a site in the NIAID trial—tested positive for antibodies to the Zika virus between January and September 2016, a group reported 27 August in the Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences.Kallás says evidence of efficacy could still emerge from areas of São Paulo that, inexplicably, have had little Zika. Those pockets, where less than 5% of the people test positive for Zika antibodies, remain susceptible to the outbreaks that could give the vaccine a real test. “There’s this sense the epidemic will hit our region, but we don’t know when,” Kallás says. “We don’t understand why it didn’t happen already.”Given the drop in cases, a surer way to test any vaccine against Zika is to deliberately expose inoculated subjects to the virus. Researchers have used this strategy, known as a human challenge trial, for decades to test vaccines against diseases that either can be effectively treated or, like Zika, typically cause mild symptoms.But in 2017, an ethics committee convened by NIAID and the Walter Reed Army Institute of Research in Silver Spring, Maryland, called it “premature” for Zika. They worried that people intentionally infected with the virus might transmit it to their sexual partners, primarily through infected semen. And they were confident that traditional field trials could test the efficacy of the leading vaccine candidates.The report froze plans for a human challenge study, which NIAID had agreed to fund. “It was a great setback,” says the study’s leader, Anna Durbin of the Johns Hopkins University Bloomberg School of Public Health in Baltimore, Maryland. “If we had been allowed to go forward, we’d know today which vaccine candidates look good.”Now, the study is being considered again, as Zika disappears from the region and industry loses interest in bringing a vaccine to market. In a major blow, Sanofi Pasteur halted work on its vaccine, licensed from Walter Reed, in September 2017. “There’s a compelling reason to conduct a human challenge trial now,” says bioethicist Seema Shah of Northwestern University’s Feinberg School of Medicine in Chicago, Illinois, who chaired the 2017 ethics committee. But, she adds, “The details are complicated and it’s important to have a rigorous review.””If they’re careful, we have no problems supporting it,” Fauci says. Durbin plans to submit her new protocol for review in about a month, and in early 2019 hopes to start injecting Zika virus into people immunized with a vaccine containing live, but weakened Zika virus made by NIAID’s Stephen Whitehead. As a precaution, she plans to enroll only women at first, to avoid semen transmission from infected males. The volunteers will receive a low dose of Zika virus, and they will remain in clinics for the 2 weeks it typically takes to clear the infection. Any vaccine that works in the challenge study theoretically could then be evaluated in a real-world outbreak—just as is occurring now with an unlicensed but promising Ebola vaccine.The much larger NIAID trial could also pay off, even if it doesn’t show whether the Zika vaccine is effective. It will yield data on safety and immune responses; combined with animal data on efficacy, the results might be enough for the U.S. Food and Drug Administration to license the vaccine, Fauci says.But regardless of whether the trial leads to an approved vaccine, he has no regrets about launching it. “Zika was a very ominous threat just a couple of years ago, and there is certainly the possibility that it is going to come back,” Fauci says. “It’s a risk that you’ll spend this money and never use the vaccine, but balancing the importance of this infection and the impact it could have, we felt it was a good decision to move ahead. And I would be happy to defend that anywhere.” (GRAPHIC) J. YOU/SCIENCE; (DATA) N. GRUBAUGH, S. SARAF, K. ANDERSEN, BASED ON WEEKLY REPORTED CASES FROM THE PAN AMERICAN HEALTH ORGANIZATION AND THE FLORIDA AND TEXAS DEPARTMENTS OF HEALTH A Brazilian mother holds her daughter, who was born in 2016 with microcephaly, a Zika-caused birth defect.center_img Sign up for our daily newsletter Get more great content like this delivered right to you! Country In 2016, as the mosquito-borne Zika virus spread through the Americas and cases of infected women having brain-damaged babies mounted, investigators raced to develop a vaccine. Now, a $110 million vaccine trial is underway at 17 sites in nine countries, but it faces an unexpected, and ironic, challenge. Cases of Zika have plummeted to levels so low that most people vaccinated in the trial likely will never be exposed to the virus, which could make it impossible to tell whether the vaccine works.”Right now, there are no infections, and certainly not enough to even think about an efficacy signal at this point,” says Anthony Fauci, director of the U.S. National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases (NIAID) in Bethesda, Maryland, which launched the trial. Human trials of other Zika vaccine candidates at earlier stages are also in limbo, and last year one large vaccinemaker pulled the plug on development of its candidate. But NIAID and others are pressing ahead, saying a vaccine might someday be needed. To make up for the lack of new cases, other investigators are turning to an unusual, and ethically complex, strategy. Starting next year, Science has learned, they plan to test a vaccine by deliberately infecting people with Zika.Launched in March 2017, NIAID’s placebo-controlled vaccine trial includes two sites in Brazil, where Zika hit hardest and where the brain damage known as microcephaly first surfaced. From the beginning of the outbreak in 2015 until the start of this year, Brazil had about half of all 800,000 suspected and confirmed Zika cases in the Americas, according to the Pan American Health Organization in Washington, D.C. But from January through June, Brazil’s Ministry of Health reported fewer than 7000 probable cases, in a nation of 200 million people. “It’s a good dilemma because we don’t have Zika anymore,” says Esper Kallás of the University of São Paulo in São Paulo, Brazil, principal investigator for the local NIAID site. “But it’s a dilemma. Everybody is concerned about it. It’s a lot of investment.” By Jon CohenSep. 12, 2018 , 12:30 PM Click to view the privacy policy. Required fields are indicated by an asterisk (*) Zika’s vanishing act Weekly counts of new Zika cases, suspected and confirmed, have plummeted in North and South American countries hosting a vaccine trial. South America Country * Afghanistan Aland Islands Albania Algeria Andorra Angola Anguilla Antarctica Antigua and Barbuda Argentina Armenia Aruba Australia Austria Azerbaijan Bahamas Bahrain Bangladesh Barbados Belarus Belgium Belize Benin Bermuda Bhutan Bolivia, Plurinational State of Bonaire, Sint Eustatius and Saba Bosnia and Herzegovina Botswana Bouvet Island Brazil British Indian Ocean Territory Brunei Darussalam Bulgaria Burkina Faso Burundi Cambodia Cameroon Canada Cape Verde Cayman Islands Central African Republic Chad Chile China Christmas Island Cocos (Keeling) Islands Colombia Comoros Congo Congo, the Democratic Republic of the Cook Islands Costa Rica Cote d’Ivoire Croatia Cuba Curaçao Cyprus Czech Republic Denmark Djibouti Dominica Dominican Republic Ecuador Egypt El Salvador Equatorial Guinea Eritrea Estonia Ethiopia Falkland Islands (Malvinas) Faroe Islands Fiji Finland France French Guiana French Polynesia French Southern Territories Gabon Gambia Georgia Germany Ghana Gibraltar Greece Greenland Grenada Guadeloupe Guatemala Guernsey Guinea Guinea-Bissau Guyana Haiti Heard Island and McDonald Islands Holy See (Vatican City State) Honduras Hungary Iceland India Indonesia Iran, Islamic Republic of Iraq Ireland Isle of Man Israel Italy Jamaica Japan Jersey Jordan Kazakhstan Kenya Kiribati Korea, Democratic People’s Republic of Korea, Republic of Kuwait Kyrgyzstan Lao People’s Democratic Republic Latvia Lebanon Lesotho Liberia Libyan Arab Jamahiriya Liechtenstein Lithuania Luxembourg Macao Macedonia, the former Yugoslav Republic of Madagascar Malawi Malaysia Maldives Mali Malta Martinique Mauritania Mauritius Mayotte Mexico Moldova, Republic of Monaco Mongolia Montenegro Montserrat Morocco Mozambique Myanmar Namibia Nauru Nepal Netherlands New Caledonia New Zealand Nicaragua Niger Nigeria Niue Norfolk Island Norway Oman Pakistan Palestine Panama Papua New Guinea Paraguay Peru Philippines Pitcairn Poland Portugal Qatar Reunion Romania Russian Federation Rwanda Saint Barthélemy Saint Helena, Ascension and Tristan da Cunha Saint Kitts and Nevis Saint Lucia Saint Martin (French part) Saint Pierre and Miquelon Saint Vincent and the Grenadines Samoa San Marino Sao Tome and Principe Saudi Arabia Senegal Serbia Seychelles Sierra Leone Singapore Sint Maarten (Dutch part) Slovakia Slovenia Solomon Islands Somalia South Africa South Georgia and the South Sandwich Islands South Sudan Spain Sri Lanka Sudan Suriname Svalbard and Jan Mayen Swaziland Sweden Switzerland Syrian Arab Republic Taiwan Tajikistan Tanzania, United Republic of Thailand Timor-Leste Togo Tokelau Tonga Trinidad and Tobago Tunisia Turkey Turkmenistan Turks and Caicos Islands Tuvalu Uganda Ukraine United Arab Emirates United Kingdom United States Uruguay Uzbekistan Vanuatu Venezuela, Bolivarian Republic of Vietnam Virgin Islands, British Wallis and Futuna Western Sahara Yemen Zambia Zimbabwelast_img read more

Top stories Black holes first closeup pseudoarchaeology and hunting for human pheromones

first_img Top stories: Black hole’s first close-up, pseudoarchaeology, and hunting for human pheromones (left to right): EVENT HORIZON TELESCOPE COLLABORATION ET AL.; CHRONICLE/ALAMY STOCK PHOTO; © LOUIE PSIHOYOS Email By Alex FoxApr. 12, 2019 , 2:05 PM For the first time, you can see what a black hole looks likeThis week, astronomers revealed the first image ever of a black hole—the gargantuan mass at the heart of nearby galaxy Messier 87. The image, a ring of fire surrounding the blackest of shadows, is a powerful confirmation of Albert Einstein’s theory of gravity, or general relativity, which was used to predict black holes 80 years ago. It is also a feat for the team of more than 200 scientists who toiled for years to produce the image by combining signals from eight separate radio observatories spanning the globe.Believe in Atlantis? These archaeologists want to win you back to science Sign up for our daily newsletter Get more great content like this delivered right to you! Country Country * Afghanistan Aland Islands Albania Algeria Andorra Angola Anguilla Antarctica Antigua and Barbuda Argentina Armenia Aruba Australia Austria Azerbaijan Bahamas Bahrain Bangladesh Barbados Belarus Belgium Belize Benin Bermuda Bhutan Bolivia, Plurinational State of Bonaire, Sint Eustatius and Saba Bosnia and Herzegovina Botswana Bouvet Island Brazil British Indian Ocean Territory Brunei Darussalam Bulgaria Burkina Faso Burundi Cambodia Cameroon Canada Cape Verde Cayman Islands Central African Republic Chad Chile China Christmas Island Cocos (Keeling) Islands Colombia Comoros Congo Congo, the Democratic Republic of the Cook Islands Costa Rica Cote d’Ivoire Croatia Cuba Curaçao Cyprus Czech Republic Denmark Djibouti Dominica Dominican Republic Ecuador Egypt El Salvador Equatorial Guinea Eritrea Estonia Ethiopia Falkland Islands (Malvinas) Faroe Islands Fiji Finland France French Guiana French Polynesia French Southern Territories Gabon Gambia Georgia Germany Ghana Gibraltar Greece Greenland Grenada Guadeloupe Guatemala Guernsey Guinea Guinea-Bissau Guyana Haiti Heard Island and McDonald Islands Holy See (Vatican City State) Honduras Hungary Iceland India Indonesia Iran, Islamic Republic of Iraq Ireland Isle of Man Israel Italy Jamaica Japan Jersey Jordan Kazakhstan Kenya Kiribati Korea, Democratic People’s Republic of Korea, Republic of Kuwait Kyrgyzstan Lao People’s Democratic Republic Latvia Lebanon Lesotho Liberia Libyan Arab Jamahiriya Liechtenstein Lithuania Luxembourg Macao Macedonia, the former Yugoslav Republic of Madagascar Malawi Malaysia Maldives Mali Malta Martinique Mauritania Mauritius Mayotte Mexico Moldova, Republic of Monaco Mongolia Montenegro Montserrat Morocco Mozambique Myanmar Namibia Nauru Nepal Netherlands New Caledonia New Zealand Nicaragua Niger Nigeria Niue Norfolk Island Norway Oman Pakistan Palestine Panama Papua New Guinea Paraguay Peru Philippines Pitcairn Poland Portugal Qatar Reunion Romania Russian Federation Rwanda Saint Barthélemy Saint Helena, Ascension and Tristan da Cunha Saint Kitts and Nevis Saint Lucia Saint Martin (French part) Saint Pierre and Miquelon Saint Vincent and the Grenadines Samoa San Marino Sao Tome and Principe Saudi Arabia Senegal Serbia Seychelles Sierra Leone Singapore Sint Maarten (Dutch part) Slovakia Slovenia Solomon Islands Somalia South Africa South Georgia and the South Sandwich Islands South Sudan Spain Sri Lanka Sudan Suriname Svalbard and Jan Mayen Swaziland Sweden Switzerland Syrian Arab Republic Taiwan Tajikistan Tanzania, United Republic of Thailand Timor-Leste Togo Tokelau Tonga Trinidad and Tobago Tunisia Turkey Turkmenistan Turks and Caicos Islands Tuvalu Uganda Ukraine United Arab Emirates United Kingdom United States Uruguay Uzbekistan Vanuatu Venezuela, Bolivarian Republic of Vietnam Virgin Islands, British Wallis and Futuna Western Sahara Yemen Zambia Zimbabwe Click to view the privacy policy. Required fields are indicated by an asterisk (*) Archaeologists alarmed by the rise of what they call “pseudoarchaeology” are taking to Twitter, blogs, podcasts, and YouTube to debunk false claims about ancient civilizations, including claims that aliens helped build the Egyptian and Mayan pyramids, refugees from Atlantis brought advanced technology to cultures around the world, and European immigrants were the original inhabitants of North America. Researchers say almost all such claims depend on the racist assumption that ancient non-European societies weren’t capable of inventing sophisticated architecture, calendars, math, and astronomy on their own.Can atmospheric chemists rescue the stalled quest for a human pheromone?For decades, scientists have searched in vain for a human pheromone—a chemical signal in human body odor. Now, atmospheric chemists are using techniques for parsing atmospheric particles to breathe new life into the stalled field of inquiry. Tools of their trade, such as proton transfer reaction mass spectrometry, could aid in the hunt for pheromones—measuring the changing concentrations of compounds in real time as people react to different situations.Declassified U-2 spy plane photos are a boon for aerial archaeologyInvestigating lost historical sites, like those destroyed by the Islamic State group in Iraq and Syria, is a major challenge for archaeologists. Now, researchers are using declassified high-resolution photos taken by U.S. spy planes to reconstruct archaeological sites lost to development and war in recent decades. Declassified in 1997, the photos were taken by U-2 spy planes that flew over the Middle East, the former Soviet Union, Eastern Europe, China, South America, and Cuba during the 1950s and 1960s.This physicist is trying to make sense of the brain’s tangled networksPhysicist Danielle Bassett catapulted herself into a life of research in a largely uncharted scientific field now known as network neuroscience. A Ph.D. physicist and a MacArthur fellow by age 32, she has pioneered the use of concepts from physics and math to describe the dynamic connections in the human brain. Bassett’s lab tackles a whiplash-inducing variety of questions: Do our brains navigate words in written text the way they navigate physical space? Does the structure of college students’ brains and the structure of their social networks make it hard for them to abstain from alcohol? Bassett is now pushing to take network science beyond describing the brain to offering ways to change it.last_img read more

Prosecutor To Ignore New Sandra Bland Arrest Video

first_img US-ENTERTAINMENT-TELEVISION-COSBY-COURT Bill Cosby Gets Sentenced For His Sexual Assault Conviction Earlier this year, another Black inmate was also found dead after apparently hanging himself in the same Texas jail where Bland died, prompting further questions about the facility.See below for the recently revealed footage from 2015 that Bland filmed of her own arrest.Rest in power, Sandra Bland.SEE ALSO:Erykah Badu Demands An Apology From ‘Surviving R. Kelly’ Producer Dream HamptonOutrageous! Figurines Of White Cherub Crushing Head Of Black Angel Removed From Dollar StoreMeet Jogger Joe, The Man Who Took Racist Cue From BBQ Becky In Tossing Homeless Man’s Clothes The Chronicle also reports, “Family attorney Cannon Lambert said Wednesday that the video would have not have affected the civil case. He recovered the maximum possible amount from the Department of Public Safety in the settlement, he said, a total $1.9 million.” However, he did believe the video should have been enough to criminally prosecute Encinia, sadly, the powers that be in Texas felt like it wasn’t enough.The disturbing footage was made public by WFAA late Monday night and local police had allegedly been concealing for nearly four years.Initial body cam footage showed the arresting officer getting belligerent after Bland demanded to know why she was being arrested, let alone removed from her vehicle, for the minor traffic infraction of changing lanes without a turn signal. The video from 2015 went viral and showed the cop violently threatening Bland with his Taser: “I will light you up!”After seeing the newly surfaced video, Bland’s family was demanding justice years after it had been denied to them.“Open up the case, period,” Shante Needham, Bland’s sister, said to WFAA after she saw the video on Monday, prompting her to suspect the Waller Police Department was complicit in her sister’s death. “We also know they have an extremely, extremely good cover-up system.”The Texas Department of Public Safety denied it had withheld any evidence.“The premise that the video was not produced as a part of the discovery process is wrong,” the agency told WFAA in a brief statement. “A hard drive containing copies of 820 Gigabytes of data compiled by DPS from its investigation, including the dashcam videos, jail video footage and data from Sandra Bland’s cell phone, was part of discovery.” Earlier this week, footage surfaced from Sandra Bland’s cell phone of her vantage point of the arrest that lead to her death in 2015. Many people were outraged and hoped the case would be reopened. Sadly, the case will not be reopened.See Also: Never Forget: 39 Unforgettable Images Of People Protesting The Killing Of Michael BrownThe Chronicle reports, “Special prosecutor Pheobe Smith, who had access to the video when state Trooper Brian Encinia was indicted on a perjury charge, said she did not plan to re-open the criminal case. It was dismissed in 2017.” Yep, Smith knew the video existed, which clearly shows that Encinia did not fear for his life, which was the reason why he claimed to he made Bland get out of the the car. cellphone video , Sandra Bland , Waller County jail center_img A$AP Rocky Being In A Swedish Prison Will Not Stop Her From Going To The Country That Showed Her ‘So Much Love’ Meghan McCain Whines That She Can’t Attack llhan Omar Because Trump Is Too Racist More By NewsOne Staff Gov. Cuomo Slams Mayor Bill De Blasio For The Eric Garner Case But He Also Failed The Familylast_img read more

Karnataka Supreme Court to rule today says Speakers powers need relook

first_img“When the 10th Schedule (Anti-Defection law) was added (to the Constitution), a very high status was given (to the Speaker). But with (what has happened in the) last 10-25 years, probably a re-looking is required,” observed the bench comprising Chief Justice of India Ranjan Gogoi and Justices Deepak Gupta and Aniruddha Bose.After hearing the rebel MLAs, the Speaker and Karnataka Chief Minister H D Kumaraswamy, the court fixed Wednesday to pronounce its decision on the plea of 15 rebel MLAs, whose resignations have plunged the Congress-JD(S) coalition government into crisis earlier this month.Follow Karnataka crisis LIVE updatesThirteen Congress and three JD(S) MLAs have resigned since July 6, technically reducing the numbers of the coalition from 117 to 101 compared to the BJP’s 105 in the 224-member House where the halfway mark is 113. However, the numbers will reduce only when the resignations are accepted by the Speaker or if the rebels are disqualified.In the SC Tuesday, the CJI countered arguments that the court did not have the jurisdiction to direct the Speaker to act in a particular manner at this stage.Read | SC rules: Rebel Karnataka MLAs can’t be compelled to participate in trust vote“The extent of jurisdiction depends on the kind of restraint this court would like to impose upon itself. There is no inflexible rule,” the bench told senior counsel Abhishek Manu Singhvi who appeared for the Speaker.karnataka, karnataka speaker, karnataka crisis, karnataka news, Karanataka crisis Supreme court, karnataka govt crises, karnataka govt news, congress jds karnataka, karnataka bjp, karnataka mla resign, karnataka political crises, karnataka mla resign today, karnataka mlas news, karnataka mla news, hd kumaraswamy, hd kumaraswamy news, karnataka congress, karnataka congress mla resign, karnataka mla resigination, karnataka political mess today, karnataka news Karnataka Speaker Ramesh Kumar. (Photo: PTI)Hearing the matter on July 11, the SC had asked the MLAs to appear before the Speaker and requested him to take a decision on their resignations before the end of the day. Singhvi had told the bench that the court should not have given such a direction. Related News Advertising Express daily briefing: Kulbhushan Jadhav verdict out today; SC to rule on Karnataka MLAs’ plea; and more Jharkhand court drops ‘donate Quran’ condition for bail to Ranchi woman over offensive post Advertising Karnataka crisis: SC verdict a moral victory for rebel MLAs, says Yeddyurappa ‘Truth, justice have prevailed’: PM Modi on Kulbhushan Jadhav verdict Taking stock of monsoon rain SC rules: Rebel Karnataka MLAs can’t be compelled to participate in trust vote Advertising 7 Comment(s) karnataka, karnataka speaker, karnataka crisis, karnataka news, Karanataka crisis Supreme court, karnataka govt crises, karnataka govt news, congress jds karnataka, karnataka bjp, karnataka mla resign, karnataka political crises, karnataka mla resign today, karnataka mlas news, karnataka mla news, hd kumaraswamy, hd kumaraswamy news, karnataka congress, karnataka congress mla resign, karnataka mla resigination, karnataka political mess today, karnataka news Karnataka Vidhana Soudha. (Express Photo by Darshan Devaiah BP)“Leave it open to the Speaker. Test him, correct him or invalidate him after he takes a decision. That will be the correct way to interpret the Constitutional provision,” said Singhvi.On the court’s jurisdiction, Singhvi said, “Your lordships have never done it before. Power may be there. But your lordships have never exercised it”. He said it was a question of Constitutional bodies respecting each other.Senior Advocate Rajeev Dhavan, appearing for Kumaraswamy, said what mattered was the motive of the MLAs and the Speaker had to take this into account. “Your lordships are not dealing with individual resignations. But here is a situation where they are hunting in a pack,” he said, referring to the MLAs travelling to Mumbai after the political storm erupted.He said their petition did not disclose any fundamental right that warranted the filing of a writ petition under Article 32 of the Constitution.But Justice Bose pointed out that the petition had referred to the Speaker’s action being arbitrary and violative of the fundamental rights of the legislators.karnataka, karnataka speaker, karnataka crisis, karnataka news, Karanataka crisis Supreme court, karnataka govt crises, karnataka govt news, congress jds karnataka, karnataka bjp, karnataka mla resign, karnataka political crises, karnataka mla resign today, karnataka mlas news, karnataka mla news, hd kumaraswamy, hd kumaraswamy news, karnataka congress, karnataka congress mla resign, karnataka mla resigination, karnataka political mess today, karnataka news Rebel JD(S) MLAs leave a hotel in Bengaluru (File/PTI Photo/Shailendra Bhojak)Dhavan said there was nothing in the Constitution on what should be decided first – disqualification or resignation, but added that the consequence of deciding the resignations first will be that the legislators will become ministers in a new dispensation. Senior advocate Mukul Rohatgi, representing the MLAs, said that “by not deciding, you (Speaker) are compelling a man to act against his wishes.”He contended that the resignation of the MLAs was voluntary and that it was absurd to demand proof when they had appeared in person and tendered their resignations. Best Of Express Written by Ananthakrishnan G | New Delhi | Updated: July 17, 2019 11:54:38 am More Explained After Masood Azhar blacklisting, ICJ verdict in Kulbhushan case isolates Pakistan Karnataka: Supreme Court to rule today, says Speaker’s powers need relook After hearing the rebel MLAs, the Speaker and Karnataka Chief Minister H D Kumaraswamy, the court fixed Wednesday to pronounce its decision on the plea of 15 rebel MLAs (File/PTI Photo/Shailendra Bhojak)Set to pronounce its order Wednesday on the pleas of 15 rebel Congress and JD(S) MLAs against Karnataka Speaker K R Ramesh Kumar for not accepting their resignations from the Assembly, the Supreme Court said Tuesday that the position and powers of the Speaker after the enactment of the anti-defection law in 1985 may require a re-look. Singhvi said that an earlier decision of the court asking a Speaker to intimate how much time is required to dispose of some disqualification petitions had since been referred to a Constitution bench. He asked if the court would not give more time to the Speaker to decide on the resignations.Opinion | Same old rent-seeking“Very well, we only asked you to decide,” replied the CJI. “But your lordships do not have the jurisdiction,” contended Singhvi.The argument did not go down well with the bench with the CJI remarking that “the court had jurisdiction to order a floor test in 24 hrs…because that was to your advantage? Court has jurisdiction to appoint pro-tem Speaker.”He was referring to the midnight hearing by the SC last year when it allowed BJP leader B S Yeddyurappa 24 hours to hold a floor test and ordered the appointment of a pro-tem speaker.The CJI said that he had heard the arguments of both sides and “what is needed is balancing”. “That balancing is required only after the order is given by the Speaker,” responded Singhvi, adding that the order in the Karnataka midnight hearing was when there was no government. “There could be myriad reasons for an MLA to resign,” he said, adding that the fundamental right of the MLAs to resign and do what they want is being curtailed. Rohatgi said there was no fetter on the power of superior courts to direct the Speaker. “He must be asked to decide on the resignations. There is no material to show it (resignation) is not voluntary,” he said.last_img read more

Tropical Storm Barry nears New Orleans raising flood threat

first_img Advertising More Explained Katrina on its mind, New Orleans keeps an anxious eye on Tropical Storm Barry Karnataka: Supreme Court to rule today, says Speaker’s powers need relook NRC deadline approaching, families stranded in Assam floods stay home new orleans, new orleans us, united states, storm barry, barry new orleans, storm in new orleans, floods, weather forecast, mississippi river, mississippi flooding, world news, indian express news The threat of flooding along the Mississippi River, which winds through the heart of the city, was a major concern. (AP Photo)Nervous New Orleans residents prepared to flee as Tropical Storm Barry closed in on Thursday, with forecasts of “extreme rain” and more flooding ahead of the storm’s predicted landfall by early on Saturday as the first Atlantic hurricane of 2019. By Reuters |New Orleans | Updated: July 12, 2019 1:29:22 pm Advertising Mass shooting at New Orleans: 16 wounded as gunfight erupts between two gangs The Hazards said they were leaving town for the neighboring state of Mississippi.Others flocked to supermarkets for bottled water, ice, snack foods and beer, thronging grocery outlets in such numbers that some stores ran out of shopping carts.Throughout the city, motorists left cars parked on the raised median strips of roadways in hopes of giving their vehicles just enough extra elevation to keep them from being damaged by street flooding.Storm SurgeBarry was forecast to bring a coastal storm surge into the mouth of the river, pushing its height to 19 feet (5.9 m) on Saturday, the highest on record since 1950 and dangerously close to the top of the levee system protecting the city. New Orleans Police: 2 killed, many injured in shooting In undecided Congress, first open call for Priyanka: She should be party chief Best Of Express With the brunt of the storm expected to skirt the western edge of New Orleans instead of making a direct hit, city officials refrained from ordering evacuations, urging residents to secure their property, gather supplies and shelter in place instead.But some residents, recalling the devastation wreaked in 2005 by Hurricane Katrina, which killed some 1,800 people along the Gulf, decided it was safer to leave.The threat of flooding along the Mississippi River, which winds through the heart of the city, was a major concern.“It’s really the river that has us worried,” said Betsey Hazard, who lives with her husband, Jack, and their two young children a block from the Mississippi River. “They say that the river won’t flood in New Orleans, but we have a 5-year-old and a 10-month-old, and we don’t want to take any chances.” Explained: Kulbhushan Jadhav case file Barry coalesced in the Gulf of Mexico on Thursday morning, packing maximum sustained winds of 40 miles per hour (64 kph), a day after heavy showers from the gathering storm drenched New Orleans with nearly a foot (30 cm) of rain, the National Weather Service said.A tropical storm warning was posted on Thursday afternoon for metropolitan New Orleans, and a hurricane warning for a stretch of the Louisiana coast south of the city. The weather service later reported winds increasing to 45 mph (72 kph), with higher gusts.The storm swiftly disrupted oil and gas operations along the Gulf, as energy companies halted production on more than half of the region’s petroleum output and evacuated nearly 200 offshore facilities and a coastal refinery. “The woman at our Airbnb said the water came up to the first step of our house yesterday, so we’ve just decided we’d better get out,” Clayson said. The Mississippi has been above flood stage for six months. Torrential downpours from the storm would only add to the flow, raising the chance of overtopping levee walls, especially downstream where barriers are lower.Meteorologists predicted between 10 and 20 inches (25-50 cm) of rain along much of the Gulf Coast on Friday and Saturday.New Orleans Mayor LaToya Cantrell warned that 48 hours of heavy rain could overwhelm pumps designed to purge streets and storm drains of excess water in the low-lying city.“We cannot pump our way out of the water levels that are expected to hit the city of New Orleans,” Cantrell said. “We need you to understand this.”Pumps already were working at capacity after heavy rains that flooded streets on Wednesday, she said.“The more information we get, the more concerned we are that this is going to be an extreme rain event,” Louisiana Governor John Bel Edwards told an afternoon news conference. “If Tropical Storm Barry becomes a hurricane, it would be the first time we’ve had the hurricane hit the state with rising rivers.”Mandatory evacuation orders were issued for areas of Plaquemines Parish beyond the levees southeast of the city, and for low-lying communities in Jefferson Parish, to the southwest.High winds were less of an immediate concern.Edwards said he expected the storm to measure a Category 1, the lowest rung on the five-step Saffir-Simpson scale of hurricane wind strength, when it comes ashore.Barry will be classified a hurricane once sustained winds hit 74 mph (119 km), which could occur late on Friday or early on Saturday when its center will be near the Louisiana shoreline, the National Weather Service said. Weakening is expected after Barry moves inland.The storm was quick to dampen tourism.In the normally bustling French Quarter, only a couple of tables were occupied at the popular coffee-and-beignet restaurant Café du Monde.Kate Clayson of Northampton, England, and her boyfriend, Maxx Lipman, of Nashville, Tennessee, said they arrived on Wednesday for a vacation but were planning to depart on Thursday. Related News Post Comment(s) Advertisinglast_img read more

MiniNeptune found orbiting distant star

first_img By Sid PerkinsJan. 7, 2019 , 5:15 PM ‘Mini-Neptune’ found orbiting distant star Email Click to view the privacy policy. Required fields are indicated by an asterisk (*) Country * Afghanistan Aland Islands Albania Algeria Andorra Angola Anguilla Antarctica Antigua and Barbuda Argentina Armenia Aruba Australia Austria Azerbaijan Bahamas Bahrain Bangladesh Barbados Belarus Belgium Belize Benin Bermuda Bhutan Bolivia, Plurinational State of Bonaire, Sint Eustatius and Saba Bosnia and Herzegovina Botswana Bouvet Island Brazil British Indian Ocean Territory Brunei Darussalam Bulgaria Burkina Faso Burundi Cambodia Cameroon Canada Cape Verde Cayman Islands Central African Republic Chad Chile China Christmas Island Cocos (Keeling) Islands Colombia Comoros Congo Congo, the Democratic Republic of the Cook Islands Costa Rica Cote d’Ivoire Croatia Cuba Curaçao Cyprus Czech Republic Denmark Djibouti Dominica Dominican Republic Ecuador Egypt El Salvador Equatorial Guinea Eritrea Estonia Ethiopia Falkland Islands (Malvinas) Faroe Islands Fiji Finland France French Guiana French Polynesia French Southern Territories Gabon Gambia Georgia Germany Ghana Gibraltar Greece Greenland Grenada Guadeloupe Guatemala Guernsey Guinea Guinea-Bissau Guyana Haiti Heard Island and McDonald Islands Holy See (Vatican City State) Honduras Hungary Iceland India Indonesia Iran, Islamic Republic of Iraq Ireland Isle of Man Israel Italy Jamaica Japan Jersey Jordan Kazakhstan Kenya Kiribati Korea, Democratic People’s Republic of Korea, Republic of Kuwait Kyrgyzstan Lao People’s Democratic Republic Latvia Lebanon Lesotho Liberia Libyan Arab Jamahiriya Liechtenstein Lithuania Luxembourg Macao Macedonia, the former Yugoslav Republic of Madagascar Malawi Malaysia Maldives Mali Malta Martinique Mauritania Mauritius Mayotte Mexico Moldova, Republic of Monaco Mongolia Montenegro Montserrat Morocco Mozambique Myanmar Namibia Nauru Nepal Netherlands New Caledonia New Zealand Nicaragua Niger Nigeria Niue Norfolk Island Norway Oman Pakistan Palestine Panama Papua New Guinea Paraguay Peru Philippines Pitcairn Poland Portugal Qatar Reunion Romania Russian Federation Rwanda Saint Barthélemy Saint Helena, Ascension and Tristan da Cunha Saint Kitts and Nevis Saint Lucia Saint Martin (French part) Saint Pierre and Miquelon Saint Vincent and the Grenadines Samoa San Marino Sao Tome and Principe Saudi Arabia Senegal Serbia Seychelles Sierra Leone Singapore Sint Maarten (Dutch part) Slovakia Slovenia Solomon Islands Somalia South Africa South Georgia and the South Sandwich Islands South Sudan Spain Sri Lanka Sudan Suriname Svalbard and Jan Mayen Swaziland Sweden Switzerland Syrian Arab Republic Taiwan Tajikistan Tanzania, United Republic of Thailand Timor-Leste Togo Tokelau Tonga Trinidad and Tobago Tunisia Turkey Turkmenistan Turks and Caicos Islands Tuvalu Uganda Ukraine United Arab Emirates United Kingdom United States Uruguay Uzbekistan Vanuatu Venezuela, Bolivarian Republic of Vietnam Virgin Islands, British Wallis and Futuna Western Sahara Yemen Zambia Zimbabwe A warm, gaseous planet about three times the diameter of Earth circles an orange dwarf star about 53 light-years away, astronomers reported today at the annual meeting of the American Astronomical Society in Seattle, Washington. The planet, dubbed HD21749b (depicted above in an artist’s representation), is one of three small exoplanets discovered by one of NASA’s newest satellites.HD21749b has an estimated density about that of water. That means it’s unlikely to be a rocky planet like Earth, though it may have some rocky parts. It’s also a lot hotter than our home planet, orbiting its sun—HD21749—at about half the distance from which Mercury orbits our star. Data suggest the planet has a relatively toasty cloud-top temperature of 149°C, somewhat cooler than Mercury because the host star HD21749 is somewhat smaller and cooler than our sun.The planet was first discovered by NASA’s Transiting Exoplanet Survey Satellite, which was launched in April 2018. That probe is designed to look for the minieclipses that occur when planets pass in front of their host stars as seen from Earth. Subsequent analyses of old data gathered by ground-based telescopes helped the scientists calculate the planet’s 36-day-long “year.” NASA Goddard Space Flight Center Sign up for our daily newsletter Get more great content like this delivered right to you! Country In an as-yet-unconfirmed finding, submitted to The Astrophysical Journal Letters, the team also reports detecting an Earth-size planet that orbits HD21749 once every 7.8 days or so. Because that planet orbits its host star even closer than HD21749b does, it would likely have a surface temperature that’s much hotter.last_img read more

South Korea seeks US help in bitter trade spat with Japan

first_img Post Comment(s) Taking stock of monsoon rain By AP |Seoul | Published: July 11, 2019 2:23:43 pm The move has escalated into a full-blown diplomatic dispute that threatens to worsen relations between the neighbors, which have feuded in past years over issues related to Japan’s brutal colonial rule of Korea before the end of World War II.“(Minister Kang) expressed concern that Japan’s trade restrictions would not only inflict damage to our companies, but could also disrupt global supply chains and cause negative effects not only to U.S. companies but also to the global trade order,” the ministry said in a press release.“This would not be ideal for the bilateral friendship and cooperation between South Korea and Japan and also the three-way cooperation between South Korea, the United States and Japan.”Kim Hyun-chong, deputy chief of South Korea’s presidential National Security Office, arrived in Washington on Wednesday and told reporters he would discuss the trade spat with Japan with U.S. officials. His trip came a day after South Korean President Moon Jae-in urged Japan to refrain from pushing the situation to a “dead-end street” and respond to Seoul’s efforts to resolve the matter diplomatically. Trump’s trip to Asia: Diplomacy with an exclamation point Cabinet asks finance panel to consider securing funds for defence Advertising S.Korea minister warns of possible countermeasures to Japan’s export curbs The government said Thursday that Foreign Minister Kang Kyung-wha discussed the issue with U.S. Secretary of State Mike Pompeo by phone and conveyed Seoul’s view that Japan’s “undesirable” trade curbs could disrupt global supply chains and hurt trilateral cooperation among the countries.The ministry said Pompeo expressed an “understanding” of South Korea’s position and agreed to help facilitate communication through diplomatic channels among Washington, Seoul and Tokyo.Tokyo last week tightened the approval process for Japanese shipments of photoresists and other sensitive materials to South Korean companies, which need the chemicals to produce semiconductors and display screens used in TVs and smartphones. According to the ministry’s figures, South Korea’s economy received $330 million in direct investment from Japan during the first six months of the year, a 51% drop from the same period last year.Park Tae-seong, a senior ministry official, said the decline was unrelated to Tokyo’s trade curbs that were announced in July and that Japanese companies were committing more money to domestic investment ahead of next year’s Tokyo Olympics. He didn’t answer straightforwardly when asked whether the worsening relationship between Seoul and Tokyo was affecting Japanese investment to South Korea.South Korea, an export-reliant economy that is the world’s biggest supplier of computer chips and displays, sees the Japanese trade curbs as retaliation for court rulings that ordered Japanese firms to compensate aging South Korean plaintiffs for forced labor during World War II.Japanese officials say such materials can be exported only to trustworthy trading partners, hinting at security risks and illegal transfers of sensitive materials to North Korea, without citing specific cases.South Korea has denied the claims, saying that an inspection of companies that process and export chemicals imported from Japan found no sign of illegal transactions that allowed them to reach North Korea or any other country affected by U.N. sanctions. Best Of Express More acrimony in Japan-South Korea row as Tokyo lodges protest After Masood Azhar blacklisting, more isolation for Pakistan moon jae-in, donald trump, south korea, japan, united states, wto, un sanctions, world war II, tokyo, world news, indian express The deteriorating relationship between South Korea and Japan could possibly complicate U.S. efforts to strengthen their three-way cooperation. (AP)South Korea is seeking US help in a bitter diplomatic row with fellow American ally Japan over its moves to tighten controls on high-tech exports. “I came because there are a lot of bilateral issues between South Korea and the United States to be discussed in meetings with the White House and also the Senate and House,” Kim told South Korean reporters at the Dulles International Airport. When asked whether South Korea would ask the United States to mediate in the trade dispute with Japan, Kim said, “That issue will be discussed too.”Analysts say U.S. help would be critical for South Korea’s efforts to find an end to its trade dispute with Japan as it doesn’t have much leverage against the economically stronger Tokyo.The deteriorating relationship between South Korea and Japan could possibly complicate U.S. efforts to strengthen their three-way cooperation to deal with nuclear-armed North Korea and China’s growing influence in the region. But it’s unclear how much the Trump administration would be willing to intervene, considering its close ties with Tokyo and when it seems to put less value on alliances than previous U.S. governments.South Korea’s Ministry of Trade, Industry and Energy said its minister for trade, Yoo Myung-hee, will head for the United States soon to discuss the Japanese trade curbs. South Korea will also send trade officials to Tokyo for a meeting with their Japanese counterparts on Friday, but the ministry said Japan has so far shown no willingness to negotiate its measures and will likely use the meeting to explain and reaffirm its stance. Advertising Related News Advertising More Explained South Korea plans to file a complaint with the World Trade organization. It raised the issue at a WTO Goods Council meeting in Geneva on Tuesday, calling on Japan to withdraw its tighter restrictions, which it says have repercussions for electronics products worldwide. Karnataka trust vote today: Speaker’s call on resignations, says SC, but gives rebel MLAs a shield last_img read more

Sweden rejects Chinas request to extradite exofficial Qiao Jianjun

first_img“I again urge Sweden to acknowledge China’s demands,” Geng said. Lilja said the U.S. case remained open, with the United States having until Aug. 2 to say why it wants Qiao extradited.Qiao has been living in Sweden since 2013 and applied for asylum in March. A decision is pending. “Now we have a precedent, that the court has found that China’s handling of the juridical system and human rights is appalling and cannot be accepted, at least not by a Swedish court,” Henrik Olsson Lilja, Qiao’s lawyer, told Reuters.“China cannot appeal this decision. There will be no extradition from Sweden.” Qiao was arrested in Sweden in June last year under the Chinese extradition request. He was released last month, then re-arrested days later under the U.S. request. The European Convention and Swedish law both bar authorities from extraditing people to countries where they would face political or religious persecution, torture or the death penalty.Chinese foreign ministry spokesman Geng Shuang said that China hoped Sweden could “face squarely the facts of Qiao Jianjun’s crimes” and extradite him back to China as soon as possible and avoid becoming a “haven for criminals”.China paid great attention to the protection of human rights, especially those of criminal suspects, Geng told a daily news briefing. China has already had extradited back to it more than 260 suspects from European, Asian, African and Latin American countries, which shows the international community’s confidence in its legal system, he added. Related News Karnataka: SC to rule today, says Speaker’s powers need relook Advertising Nine killed in plane crash during skydiving trip in Sweden Post Comment(s) While there was reasonable suspicion Qiao Jianjun had committed crimes in China, there was a risk he would be persecuted because of his political activity and treated in violation of the European Convention, the court ruled. “Under these conditions, extradition cannot take place,” Justice Council Petter Asp said in a statement.Court documents seen by Reuters showed that Qiao stated that he had fled from China in 2011 after coming under pressure for joining a banned political party. China had asked Sweden to extradite Qiao, also known as Feng Li, on suspicion of breach of trust and fraud relating to the embezzlement of the equivalent of about 100 million Swedish crowns ($11 million).He has also been charged with money laundering and immigration fraud in the United States, which is also seeking his extradition. Explosion in southern town in Sweden injures 25, cause unclear center_img By Reuters |Stockholm | Published: July 9, 2019 4:57:02 pm People in Sweden switch to trains to deter global warming Sweden, Qiao Jianjun, China, Qiao Jianjun,Qiao Jianjun Extradition, Qiao Jianjun extradition blockage, Qiao Jianjun asylum, Sweden legal system, Sweden-China, Sweden-China relations, World news, Indian Express news Sweden’s Supreme Court blocked the extradition of a former Chinese official wanted by Beijing on suspicion of embezzlement, ruling on Tuesday that he could face persecution if sent back to China. (Representational Image)Sweden’s Supreme Court blocked the extradition of a former Chinese official wanted by Beijing on suspicion of embezzlement, ruling on Tuesday that he could face persecution if sent back to China. Best Of Express NRC deadline approaching, families stranded in Assam floods stay home In undecided Congress, first open call for Priyanka: She should be party chief Advertisinglast_img read more

The Rise of AI Give Me That New Time Religion

first_imgEmbracing the Singularity The New New Age A religion based on technology may not be so farfetched either –authors such as H.P. Lovecraft and Arthur C. Clarke suggested that toprimitive societies, technology would resemble magic, and thus could beconfused with religion.One interesting issue is whether the machine intelligence would regard itself as a god.”If we create a super intelligent computer, they would still have toemulate properties that give way to transcendence,” said Brian C.Wilson, professor of American religious history at West Michigan University.”With AI, part of it would be that it has something transcendental, asthat is the key to the new religion movement,” he told TechNewsWorld. “But also, what kind ofwisdom does it offer?”At present, the Way of the Future has just its Dean, but “newreligions have started with less,” noted Wilson.One needs only to look to the carpenter turned preacher, the Bedouinmerchant turned prophet, the Upstate New York farmer or sciencefiction fantasy writer — all of whom were ridiculed for theirrespective faiths.”The leader typically needs to have a certain ‘X’ factor and charisma,but the real test is what happens when that charismatic leader dies,”said Wilson. Of course, any new religion is likely to have its “Doubting Thomas” types as well.”I’m anticipating that a partnership with The Church of the FlyingSpaghetti Monster will soon emerge,” said Josh Crandall, principalanalyst at Netpop Research.”This is the beginning of something bigger — not just a singlereligion, but an incubator for worshipping our emerging AI overlords,”Crandall quipped.”We better become comfortable with it, people, because devotedengineers and scientists will convert in growing hordes as the logicof AI-focused religions are more convincing than our spiritualbeliefs,” he told TechNewsWorld.”We could see schisms and denominational rifts as different AIs areworshipped, too,” warned WMU’s Wilson. “It will also be hard to predict whatthis new religion — or other recently founded religions — could resemblein a thousand years.”Or maybe Levandowski isn’t really serious at all.”Maybe it’s just a diversionary tactic to complicate the Waymo/Uberintellectual property lawsuit that Mr. Levandowski is at the center ofright now,” suggested Netpop’s Crandall. “Whatever — this new development is a strokeof genius.” The Way of the Future, founded in 2015, does not worship any spiritual god(s) that can cast lightning or smite evildoers. Levandowski’s premise appears to be that AI sooner or later will be billions of times smarter than the smartest human and thus could have “god-like” powers.The new religion doesn’t prophesy a coming messiah, the end of days, or any other divine future happening. Instead, Levandowski’s focus is on “the singularity” or “transition” that lies ahead — that is, the moment when AI surpasses human intelligence.Current prominent tech thinkers — from Bill Gates to Stephen Hawking to Elon Musk — have warned that AI superiority could unleash machines on humanity in a manner similar to the dark fantasies depicted in science fiction movies such as The Terminator or The Matrix — and that humans should prepare to deal with the possibility.However, instead of fearing the rise of the machines, the Way of the Future embraces it as inevitable. Humans may have to serve a new AI master and as people have submitted to god(s) for eons, the argument seems to go. Is It a Real Religion? Anthony Levandowski, known for his work developing self-driving auto technology, has started the world’sfirst artificial intelligence-based religion, according to Wired, which on Wednesday published an article based on a lengthy interview with the would-be prophet.Levandowski, who has been at the center of a legal dispute between Google’s Waymoself-driving unit and Uber, has cast himself as the frontman for the Way of the Future church.The mission of this “technotheistic” movement is spelled out as “the realization, acceptance, and worship of a Godhead based on Artificial Intelligence developed through computer and hardware and software,” in documents filed with the IRS, Wired reported. The church is listed as a nonprofit with Levandowski as “Dean.”center_img History is full of prophets and false prophets, and new religions actually arenothing all that new. The New Religious Movement (NRM), oralternative spirituality, has faced a hostile reception with establishedreligious groups and groups associated with it oftentimes have been labeled “cults.”It’s questionable whether the Way of the Future, which may or may not have any followers, can be considered an actual religion or if it better fits the definition of a cult.”‘Religion’ is the engagement of ultimate realities in cognitive,existential, and social practice ways,” said Robert CummingsNeville, a professor of philosophy, religion and theology at BostonUniversity.”There is nothing in principle that would prevent the involvement ofartificial intelligence in this,” he told TechNewsWorld.”The invention of writing and ofprinting revolutionized religions in the past, and surely computersare in wide use among religious people of many sorts,” Neville said, “but I don’t know whether this Way of the Future means to worship progressive AI, use AIs to model ultimate realities such as God, theDao, etc., or to use AI to set up religious practices.” New Age religions have gained traction with those who seek thespirituality aspects but are skeptical of the higher being elements intraditional Eastern and Western religious movements.Thus it could bethat the Way of the Future would appeal to those “people of science” whocast doubt on the existence of God but yet seek a higher power.What could be higher than an AI-powered supercomputer?Levandowski’s view could place AI in the same category as a messiah.”I could see people pinning their hopes on a super-intelligent AI, just as in the 1950s people thought UFOs might bring superior enlightenment,” added Wilson. “The millennium movement isoften associated with the arrival of such a messiah who ushers in thenew age — so why not from a machine?” The Tech Godhead Great AI Schisms Peter Suciu has been an ECT News Network reporter since 2012. His areas of focus include cybersecurity, mobile phones, displays, streaming media, pay TV and autonomous vehicles. He has written and edited for numerous publications and websites, including Newsweek, Wired and FoxNews.com.Email Peter.last_img read more