Science & Technology

NASA opens space station to private-sector astronauts

June 09, 2019

NASA unveiled an ambitious program Friday to commercialize low-Earth orbit, making way for visits by private-sector astronauts to the International Space Station as early as next year. It would also allow product development and even advertising aboard the space station, along with use of a station docking port for privately financed research and development modules.

Amazon shows off new all-electric Prime Air drone that will start delivering packages 'within months'

June 07, 2019

Amazon’s drone ambitions took another step forward today as the tech giant revealed its latest delivery drone design. At Amazon’s re:MARS conference, Amazon’s Worldwide Consumer CEO, Jeff Wilke, showed off a fully-electric drone that can fly up to 15 miles and deliver packages under 5 pounds in less than 30 minutes.

Facial recognition technology ramps up, but lacks "checks and balances"

June 06, 2019

For the first time in the United States, some schools could start using facial recognition for security. Lockport Public Schools in western New York started testing it this week. It's one of the many areas of society now relying on the technology -- and that's raising new privacy and civil rights concerns.

The U.S. can't let China steal the technology revolution - whatever the cost to Huawei

June 06, 2019

It’s no secret that China has long played fast and loose with patent, trade secret and copyright laws in violation of international norms. When called on the carpet, China makes vague concessions, and U.S. companies live with the infractions as the cost of doing business. But the current trade dispute is different and the stakes higher.

Radiation Makes Human Missions to Mars Too Dangerous: ESA

June 06, 2019

All of humanity save for a handful of astronauts have the advantage of living inside the protective bubble of Earth’s magnetic field. As space agencies and private companies look toward a future of people living on the moon and Mars, we have to contend with an unpleasant reality: the radiation out there is lethal. Any attempt to send humans to Mars right now would undoubtedly result in severe health problems, but scientists at the European Space Agency (ESA) are studying the issue in hopes of making space safe for humanity.

Controversial U.S. bill would lift Supreme Court ban on patenting human genes

June 06, 2019

A congressional proposal that would overturn a landmark U.S. Supreme Court decision that barred the patenting of human genes and ease other restrictions on patenting software and biomedical inventions is drawing fierce criticism from some scientific societies and patient advocates.

Should Big Tech Fear U.S. Antitrust Enforcers?

June 06, 2019

The potential investigations have been welcomed by some consumer advocates, who say big technology companies stifle competition and hold too much sway over speech and commerce. But some legal experts said the investigations may not lead to major reforms, noting that U.S. law makes it difficult to prove an antitrust violation.

3 life skills that are becoming obsolete

June 05, 2019

In an analysis of 702 occupations, researchers from Oxford University came to a distressing conclusion. A full 47 percent of all occupations in the US are likely to become automated, and that's only over the next few decades.

Navy starts building new massive, 50-ton undersea attack drone

June 05, 2019

The Navy is planning to launch a massive, 50-ton undersea drone to expand mission scope, increase attack options, integrate large high-tech sensors, further safeguard manned combat crews and possibly fire torpedoes -- all while waging war under the ocean surface.

FBI database stokes worries over facial recognition tech

June 05, 2019

Lawmakers are intensifying their calls for a temporary ban on the federal government’s use of facial recognition technology after the disclosure that the FBI has amassed a database of more than 640 million photographs.

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