Science & Technology

There are about 20,000 human genes. So why do scientists only study a small fraction of them?

September 23, 2018

Sequencing the human genome in the 1990s was supposed to reveal the entire universe of genes important to health and disease. But a handful of recent studies have shown that, surprisingly, researchers still focus mainly on only about 2000 of the roughly 19,000 human genes that code for proteins.

Former Google CEO predicts the internet will split in two by 2028, with one part led by China

September 21, 2018

“I think the most likely scenario now is not a splintering, but rather a bifurcation into a Chinese-led internet and a non-Chinese internet led by America. If you look at China, and I was just there, the scale of the companies that are being built, the services being built, the wealth that is being created is phenomenal.

China could target US tech stocks in trade war, Goldman Sachs warns

September 20, 2018

China could target U.S. tech stocks as part of the ongoing trade war, according to the top equity strategist at Goldman Sachs. Peter Oppenheimer told CNBC’s “Street Signs” on Tuesday that China may impose tariffs on industry components that could have an effect on supply chains.

SpaceX Reveals First Lunar Passenger

September 20, 2018

SpaceX confirmed last week that it had plans to launch a space tourist to the moon, but the identity of that person would not be revealed until Monday evening. The press conference took place as planned, and CEO Elon Musk stood shoulder-to-shoulder with the aspiring astronaut, Japanese fashion tycoon Yusaku Maezawa. It won’t be Maezawa alone on the rocket, though. His ticket entitles him to bring some friends along for the ride.

Bringing science to policymaking

September 19, 2018

Although science may seem to be underappreciated in D.C., demand in the federal government for STEM (science, technology, engineering and math) expertise remains high. Each September since 1973, the Science & Technology Policy Fellowships program has responded to this pressing need by bringing scientists and engineers to Washington for a yearlong placement.

Congress's Quantum Science Bill May Not Keep the US Military Ahead of China

September 18, 2018

“It does seem like it’s a fairly good initiative overall,” said Elsa Kania, adjunct fellow of the Technology and National Security Program at the Center for New American Security, or CNAS, and co-author of a report released the same day calling for greater focus on the quantum race against China. “It generally hits a lot of the right points.” But Kania also argued that the U.S. needs more specific guidance from Congress.

House Passes $1.275B National Quantum Initiative

September 18, 2018

Last Thursday the U.S. House of Representatives passed the National Quantum Initiative Act (NQIA) intended to accelerate quantum computing research and development. Among other things it would establish a National Quantum Coordination Office within the White House Office of Science and Technology Policy to oversee a “whole-of-government” effort.

Former Obama administration official: Trump is addressing 'longstanding' trade issues

September 18, 2018

Many of the trade issues on which U.S. President Donald Trump is now focusing have been concerns for numerous White House administrations, according to Michael Froman, who served as U.S. Trade Representative under former President Barack Obama.

Astronomers Have Found the Universe's Missing Matter

September 18, 2018

Astronomers have finally found the last of the missing universe. It’s been hiding since the mid-1990s, when researchers decided to inventory all the “ordinary” matter in the cosmos--stars and planets and gas, anything made out of atomic parts. (This isn’t “dark matter,” which remains a wholly separate enigma.)

Quantum lag: Experts fret that the U.S. risks falling behind in computing power

September 17, 2018

The promise, and threat, of quantum computing is still years away. But quantum experts fear a lack of government emphasis and coordination on research strategy could upend U.S. digital and national security.

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