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robmonk's feed

  • 11 days ago
    Analysis robmonk

    Numerical cognition in honeybees enables addition and subtraction

    Many animals understand numbers at a basic level for use in essential tasks such as foraging, shoaling, and resource management. However, complex arithmetic operations, such as addition and subtraction, using symbols and/or labeling have only been demonstrated in a limited number of nonhuman vertebrates. We show that honeybees, with a miniature brain, can learn to use blue and yellow as symbolic representations for addition or subtraction.

  • 11 days ago
    Current Event robmonk

    Did Finland's free money experiment work?

    Finland has just completed a major basic income experiment where 2,000 unemployed people were given €560 (£490) a month for two years, instead of their unemployment benefit. The basic income was paid with no strings attached. Recipients weren't required to seek or accept jobs but still received the payment if they found a job. The Finnish government wanted to see if this financial incentive encouraged people to get jobs or start businesses.

  • 11 days ago
    Current Event robmonk

    Spray-on skin: It's now a real product for treating burns

    Dylan Melancon estimates that he was going 70 miles an hour when he crashed his motorcycle on a hot New Orleans highway this past June. He wasn’t wearing leathers or other protective clothing. Melancon's virtually unprotected body slid along the concrete at high speed for yards. “I was wearing dress pants and a T-shirt. Afterwards, I was wearing no pants,” the 26-year-old nursing student said.

  • 12 days ago
    Current Event robmonk

    Reddit is raising a huge round near a $3 billion valuation

    Reddit is raising $150 million to $300 million to keep the front page of the internet running, multiple sources tell TechCrunch. The forthcoming Series D round is said to be led by Chinese tech giant Tencent at a $2.7 billion pre-money valuation. Depending on how much follow-on cash Reddit drums up from Silicon Valley investors and beyond, its post-money valuation could reach an epic $3 billion. As more people seek esoteric community and off-kilter entertainment online, Reddit continues to grow...

  • 2 weeks ago
    Current Event robmonk

    FBI charges second Apple employee with stealing autonomous car secrets

    Apple’s autonomous car program Project Titan may be mysterious to everyone outside the company, but Titan engineers have access to thousands of top secret automotive files — a fact that has now led to another disturbing arrest. According to an NBC Bay Area report (via The Verge), the FBI has charged Apple employee Jizhong Chen with stealing Project Titan trade secrets before flying to China, where he had applied for a job with a direct competitor in the autonomous vehicle segment.

  • 2 weeks ago
    Current Event robmonk

    Net Neutrality’s Day in Court

    The Court of Appeals for the D.C. Circuit heard the case of Mozilla v. FCC today to determine whether the Federal Communications Commission (FCC) is allowed to repeal its net neutrality rules and abandon its authority over the broadband industry. The case delved into many different legal and technical issues that reveal the extent the FCC is willing to stretch to abandon the Open Internet. On one side sat public interest advocates, local governments, and Internet companies large and small.

  • 2 weeks ago
    Current Event robmonk

    Can AI help crack the code of fusion power?

    With the click of a mouse and a loud bang, I blasted jets of super-hot, ionized gas called plasma into one another at hundreds of miles per second. I was sitting in the control room of a fusion energy startup called TAE Technologies, and I’d just fired its $150 million plasma collider. That shot was a tiny part of the company’s long pursuit of a notoriously elusive power source. I was at the company’s headquarters to talk to them about the latest phase of their hunt that involves an algori...

  • 1 month ago
    Analysis robmonk

    Microsoft CTO: Understanding AI is part of being an informed citizen in the 21st century

    Microsoft CTO Kevin Scott believes understanding AI in the future will help people be better citizens. “I think to be a well-informed citizen in the 21st century, you need to know a little bit about this stuff [AI] because you want to be able to participate in the debates. You don’t want to be someone to whom AI is sort of this thing that happens to you. You want to be an active agent in the whole ecosystem,” he said.

  • 1 month ago
    Current Event robmonk

    Tim Cook to Investors: People Bought Fewer New iPhones Because They Repaired Their Old Ones

    Wednesday, Apple CEO Tim Cook wrote a letter to investors alerting them that the company would miss its revenue targets in part because Apple didn’t sell as many iPhones as it expected. The lengthy letter cites, specifically, that people are buying fewer iPhones because they are repairing their old ones.

  • 1 month ago
    Current Event robmonk

    How Buffalo resurrected its river

    Shielded by wraparound sunglasses and a windbreaker against a gusty fall day, Jill Spisiak Jedlicka strides across a lawn toward New York’s Buffalo River. The grass is part of a fresh public space called Buffalo River Fest Park. Ms. Jedlicka, executive director of the nonprofit Buffalo Niagara Waterkeeper, looks around with justifiable pride. Volunteers she and other community leaders directed have planted basswood trees and dogwood shrubs along the shore.

  • 1 month ago
    Current Event robmonk

    Astronaut: Human mission to Mars 'stupid'

    One of the first men to orbit the Moon has told BBC Radio 5 Live that it's "stupid" to plan human missions to Mars. Bill Anders, lunar module pilot of Apollo 8, the first human spaceflight to leave Earth's orbit, said sending crews to Mars was "almost ridiculous". Nasa is currently planning new human missions to the Moon.

  • 2 months ago
    Current Event robmonk

    Alien Imposters: Planets with Oxygen Don’t Necessarily Have Life

    In their search for life in solar systems near and far, researchers have often accepted the presence of oxygen in a planet’s atmosphere as the surest sign that life may be present there. A new Johns Hopkins study, however, recommends a reconsideration of that rule of thumb. Simulating in the lab the atmospheres of planets beyond the solar system, researchers successfully created both organic compounds and oxygen, absent of life.

  • 2 months ago
    Current Event robmonk

    Mobile Machine-Learning Program Predicts Autism with High Accuracy

    As autism rates continue to rise, the process of getting an autism diagnosis remains arduous and time-consuming for many families. Dennis P. Wall, Ph.D., associate professor of pediatrics and biomedical data science at Stanford University, said the two standard autism diagnostic instruments involve lengthy observation and/or interview processes. If both are used, the process can take more than four hours. That’s a big part of the reason many diagnostic clinics have lengthy waiting lists.

  • 2 months ago
    Current Event robmonk

    Canadian team confirms presence of huge unexplored cave in British Columbia

    A massive pit that was spotted in a remote high alpine valley in British Columbia’s Wells Gray Provincial Park earlier this year is the entrance to a previously unexplored cave of “national significance,” say two members of a Canadian team that helped conduct a preliminary exploration of the site in September.

  • 2 months ago
    Current Event robmonk

    Companies Aren’t Going Public Anymore

    One week this summer, the Nasdaq stock market listed five recent initial public offerings, including Sonos, the home-audio company, and Vaccinex, which makes a promising cancer drug. That same week, an investor looking at Nasdaq’s Listing Center would have seen the names of 16 stocks set to disappear. The reasons for the delistings varied. Synchronoss Technologies, a software company, had failed to file financial reports since February 2017.

  • 2 months ago
    Current Event robmonk

    ‘Facebook has a black people problem’: Black ex-employee spotlights race issues in public memo

    Mark Luckie, a digital strategist and former journalist, says he accepted the job offer from Facebook reluctantly. At first, he didn’t want to move to Silicon Valley from Atlanta, where he had been living, but he said his fiance was able to persuade him, telling him that the job presented an opportunity to make a difference on the influential social network.