News, Offbeat, Robotics, Videos

The great Pan-Pacific Robot Duel

USA’s MegaBots Inc issued a challenge to Suidobashi Heavy Industry, Japanese robotics manufacturer, to a giant, epic, ROBOT DUEL (hype intensifies).

Animals, News, Science

Climate change is reversing the sex of bearded dragons, a first

Dragon Lizard

Rising temperatures are fundamentally changing the way Australia’s bearded lizards get their gender. Basically, the lizard’s sex is not dependent on their genes as before, but on temperature. In time, the male chromosome could disappear, as more and more females are bred – the preferred sex. What this means is that if temperatures reach a critical level, then the lizards could become extinct due to lack of males. This has never happened before and it’s as scary, as it is interesting.

Geology, News, Science, Space

Rosetta spacecraft finds huge sinkholes on comet’s surface

A catalogue of sinkholes spotted by Rosetta on comet 67P/Churyumov-Gerasimenko.
Image via: forbes.com

Rosetta is a robotic space probe built and launched by the European Space Agency. Along with Philae, its lander module, the craft is performing a detailed study of comet 67P/Churyumov–Gerasimenko. The probe usually orbits 67P at a distance of a few hundred kilometers. Footage received from Rosetta over the last year showed a number of dust jets coming from the comet,

Environment, News

Cuban scientists express environmental concerns with US influence

Image via Cuban DMC.

As the US starts to thaw its relationship with Cuba, important economy, touristic and cultural prospects start to emerge; but as these prospects emerge, so to do environmental concerns. Cuban scientists are worried that as American tourists and money start flowing into their country, the environment will be the one to suffer. “We don’t have to be imprisoned by the

News

The artificial pancreas could automate insulin delivery for diabetics

diabetes

In the lab, a team UC Santa Barbara demonstrated that an artificial pancreas that can automatically deliver insulin shots at a regular basis to diabetes patients. The biocompatible pancreas constantly monitors glucose levels and administers the insulin when its needed. This way there would be no need for cumbersome daily insulin injections. The researchers will soon start trials on animal models and if all goes well, clinical trials will follow shortly.

Animals, Biology, Geology

Saber-tooth cats grew their fangs faster than human fingernails

Skeleton of Smilodon (Smilodon fatalis). Exhibit in the National Museum of Nature and Science, Tokyo, Japan.

Saber-tooth cats, the bane of early humans (and pretty much every creature that co-existed with them), roamed the Earth for 42 million years before going extinct at the end of the ice age. Now, a new study has found that their trademark teeth may have evolved later in their evolutionary stage, but when they grew, they grew fast. The saber-tooth cats were

Environment, Health & Medicine, News

A (Lucky) Iron Fish is helping Halve Anemia in Cambodia

The Lucky Iron Fish

This little iron fish may look like a two bit souvenir, but what it can do is far more spectacular, not to mention useful. When added in boiling water, the fish-shaped object leaches just enough iron to offer up to 75 percent of daily iron needs of a person. Tests so far have proven that this simple, yet innovative the solution helped halve the cases of iron-deficiency anemia in Cambodian communities.

Biology, News

Woman’s face look more attractive when they ovulate, but it’s not the blushing

painting woman red

Women’s faces are more attractive to men when they hit peak ovulation, past research showed. It’s not clear what the amplifying signals are. One suggestion was that women’s cheeks turn slightly red during ovulation, providing a subtle cue that enhance attractiveness. Using cameras specially designed to distinguish between subtle colour variations, researchers at University of Cambridge found that women’s faces show an increased redness. Peculiarly, this difference is so small that it’s not visually perceptible. Is the cue that subtle or can the enhanced attractiveness be attributed to some other factor or signal?

News, Offbeat

Google photo software labels black people ‘gorillas’

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It’s the kind of error you never want to pop up in your code: Google’s automatic image recognition software has apparently classified two black friends as ‘gorillas’.

Environmental Issues, News, Videos, World Problems

The Great Barrier Reef left out of UNESCO “in danger” list, environmental group films turtle-back video to raise awareness of the area’s fragility

Image via: lt.umn.edu

The Great Barrier Reef, which stretches 2,000km (1,200 miles) along the coast, is the world’s largest living ecosystem. Environmental groups are pushing to get the reef listed as “in danger” by the UNESCO, so that the Australian government would have to work harder to protect it from various dangers such as pollution, dredging, fishing and so on. The UN says this