Science & Technology

Smuggling a CRISPR gene editor into staph bacteria can kill the pathogen

October 02, 2018

Scientists have now modified pathogenicity islands by replacing the toxin-producing genes with genes that, in mice, disabled or killed Staphylococcus aureus bacteria. If the approach works for humans, it could offer an alternative to traditional antibiotics that could one day be used against deadly drug-resistant Staphylococcus strains, researchers report September 24 in Nature Biotechnology.

NASA At 60: A Driving Force For Materials Science And Technology Innovation

October 02, 2018

Although space science can sometimes feel rather alien (excuse the pun) to most people, we actually have a lot to thank NASA for. The Space Race, and the politics surrounding it at the time, was a huge driving force for innovation in Science and Technology, and particularly in Materials Science and Engineering, as space exploration brought with it new challenges that required brand new solutions.

NASA wants to begin hunting for intelligent aliens who, like us, create technology

October 01, 2018

NASA is changing its focus to search for life advanced enough to, like us, create technology. The signs are called technosignatures, as compared with biosignatures, like in microbes, that show signs of life. Technosignatures come primarily as radio signals that allow scientists to infer the existence of technological life in the universe.

America's rising economic freedom is good news for tech

October 01, 2018

For the first time since 2005, the United States ranks in the top 10 of the freest countries in the world according to the Fraser Institute’s newest Economic Freedom Rankings, which it just released. The US fell from fourth to sixth during the George W. Bush administration and slid to 10th and 11th during the Obama years, but then began a recovery. In the first year of the Trump administration, we jumped back to sixth.

The Pentagon's New Ambassador to Silicon Valley Is Hawkish on China

September 30, 2018

Michael Brown, the former Symantec CEO who just became the new head of the Defense Innovation Unit, believes that the United States must act now to avoid further falling behind China in a tech race. In a recent interview, several of his goals and recommendations struck a very un-Trumpian tone.

Senators introduce the 'Artificial Intelligence in Government Act'

September 30, 2018

The bill aims to do a number of things, including establishing an AI in government advisory board, directing the White House Office of Management and Budget to look into AI as part of the federal data strategy, getting the Office of Personnel Management to look at what kinds of employee skills are necessary for AI competence in government and expanding “an office” at the General Services Administration that will provide expertise, do research and “promote U.S. competitiveness.”

SEC's Musk Lawsuit Highlights Dangers of Social Media Disclosures

September 28, 2018

The Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) is suing Tesla CEO Elon Musk according to a Manhattan court docket. The suit alleges that Musk committed securities fraud. Shares of Tesla immediately dipped by roughly 4 percent after the news.

An Italian-Designed, American-Built Helicopter Will Replace US Air Force Hueys

September 27, 2018

Almost two decades after the U.S. Air Force started trying to replace the Vietnam-era helicopters that patrol missile fields and stand by to evacuate senior officials, the service announced Monday that it has placed an initial order of MH-139 helicopters with the team of Boeing and Italian defense firm Leonardo.

Survey raises worries about how screen time affects kids' brains

September 27, 2018

Nearly two out of three U.S. kids spend more than two hours a day looking at screens, a new analysis of activity levels finds. And those children perform worse on memory, language and thinking tests than kids who spend less time in front of a device, the study of over 4,500 8- to 11-year-olds shows.

Tech Giants Spend $80 Billion to Make Sure No One Else Can Compete

September 26, 2018

The splurge by tech companies is behind an upswing in capital-goods spending among big U.S. companies, which is seeing its fastest growth in years, according to a Credit Suisse analysis. The $80 billion tab also is a snapshot of why it’s tough to unseat the tech giants. How can a company hope to compete with Google’s driverless cars when it spends $20 billion a year to ensure it has the best laser-guided sensors and computer chips?

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