GNU Hurd 0.6 Released

Slashdot - Thu, 16/04/2015 - 10:55pm
jrepin writes It has been roughly a year and a half since the last release of the GNU Hurd operating system, so it may be of interest to some readers that GNU Hurd 0.6 has been released along with GNU Mach 1.5 (the microkernel that Hurd runs on) and GNU MIG 1.5 (the Mach Interface Generator, which generates code to handle remote procedure calls). New features include procfs and random translators; cleanups and stylistic fixes, some of which came from static analysis; message dispatching improvements; integer hashing performance improvements; a split of the init server into a startup server and an init program based on System V init; and more.

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Categories: Science

MIT Researchers Develop Wireless Trackpad For Your Thumbnail

Slashdot - Thu, 16/04/2015 - 10:35pm
itwbennett writes: Called NailO, the prototype trackpad is similar to the stick-on nails sometimes used as a fashion accessory. It attaches to the user's thumb and can be controlled by running a finger over its surface. The processor, battery, sensing chip and Bluetooth radio are included on a circuit board that sits under the capacitive trackpad. The two are connected via a small ribbon cable, which means the trackpad is not quite as thin as a stick-on nail, but reducing the size is one of the aims of the researchers.

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Categories: Science

That Star Wars Panel’s Real Magic Was Its Balancing Act

Wired News - Thu, 16/04/2015 - 10:21pm

The patterns of epic live panels are well established, but they don't all do what Star Wars was able to do: make us care.

The post That Star Wars Panel’s Real Magic Was Its Balancing Act appeared first on WIRED.








Categories: Science

An Engineering Analysis of the Falcon 9 First Stage Landing Failure

Slashdot - Thu, 16/04/2015 - 9:53pm
schwit1 writes: AviationWeek has posted an analysis of SpaceX's latest attempt to land its Falcon 9 rocket on an ocean barge. Quoting: "SpaceX founder and chief technology officer Elon Musk tweeted that "excess lateral velocity caused it [the booster] to tip over post landing." In a later tweet that was subsequently withdrawn, Musk then indicated that "the issue was stiction in the biprop throttle valve, resulting in control system phase lag." In this statement, Musk was referring to "stiction" — or static friction — in the valve controlling the throttling of the engine. The friction appears to have momentarily slowed the response of the engine, causing the control system to command more of an extreme reaction from the propulsion system than was required. As a result, the control system entered a form of hysteresis, a condition in which the control response lags behind changes in the effect causing it. Despite the failure of the latest attempt, SpaceX will be encouraged by the landing accuracy of the Falcon 9 and the bigger-picture success of its guidance, navigation and control (GNC) system in bringing the booster back to the drone ship. The GNC also worked as designed during the prior landing attempt in January, which ended in the destruction of the vehicle following a hard touchdown on the edge of the platform." In related news, SpaceX is hoping to attempt its next landing on solid ground.

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Categories: Science

Are Food Additives Evil? We Have an Almost-Civil Debate

Wired News - Thu, 16/04/2015 - 9:41pm

Depending on who you talk to, food additives are either toxins or marvels of the modern world. Who's right?

The post Are Food Additives Evil? We Have an Almost-Civil Debate appeared first on WIRED.








Categories: Science

Embedded Linux Takes to the Skies (Video)

Slashdot - Thu, 16/04/2015 - 9:12pm
This is an interview with Clay McClure. He makes his living designing 'custom Linux software solutions for technology start-ups in Atlanta and the San Francisco Bay area.' He also works on Embedded Linux for autonomous drones. Here's a link to slides from a talk he gave on exactly that topic: Flying Penguins - Embedded Linux Applications for autonomous UAVs, and that's far from all he has to say about making Linux-controlled drones. However, for some reason Timothy and Clay didn't talk about using drones for target practice. Perhaps they can discuss that another time. NOTE: We urge you to read the transcript of this interview even if you prefer watching videos; it contains material we left out of the video due to sound problems.

Read more of this story at Slashdot.

Categories: Science

Stargazer Enjoys Venus View from Giant's Causeway in Ireland (Photo)

Space.com - Thu, 16/04/2015 - 9:00pm
Astrophotographer Miguel Claro took this image between the Giant’s Causeway, near Bushmills, in northeast coast of Northen Ireland on March 20, 2015.
Categories: Science

Next-Generation Space Telescopes Could Look For Aliens | Video

Space.com - Thu, 16/04/2015 - 8:55pm
NASA astronaut John Grunsfeld (now Associate Admin. for the Science Mission Directorate) looks back at how Hubble’s upgradable design can help us create more powerful space-based observatories.
Categories: Science

April 2015 Night Sky Photos: Amazing Stargazer Views

Space.com - Thu, 16/04/2015 - 8:45pm
See amazing amateur astronomy photos and night sky views sent in to SPACE.com by readers in April 2014 in our month-long running gallery.
Categories: Science

Spring Blooms on the East Coast, as Seen from Space

Space.com - Thu, 16/04/2015 - 8:28pm
NASA's Aqua satellite was in a unique position to capture spring's arrival on the East Coast.
Categories: Science

NASA's MESSENGER Mission To Crash Into Mercury In 2 Weeks

Slashdot - Thu, 16/04/2015 - 8:26pm
astroengine writes: NASA's MESSENGER spacecraft is in the final days of an unprecedented and unexpectedly long-lived, close-up study of the innermost planet of the solar system, with a crashing finale expected in two weeks. Out of fuel, the robotic Mercury Surface, Space Environment, Geochemistry and Ranging, or MESSENGER, probe on April 30 will succumb to the gravitational pull of this strange world that has been its home since March 2011. The purpose of the mission, originally designed to last one year, is to collect detailed geochemical and other data that will help scientists piece together of how Mercury formed and evolved. "MESSENGER is going to create a new crater on Mercury sometime in the near future ... let's not be sad about that," NASA associate administrator John Grunsfeld said Thursday. The Johns Hopkins Applied Physics Laboratory has an excellent site for looking through the pictures MESSENGER has taken and the science it's done.

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Categories: Science

Wearable device turns user's thumbnail into a miniature wireless track pad

Science Daily - Thu, 16/04/2015 - 7:53pm
Researchers are developing a new wearable device that turns the user's thumbnail into a miniature wireless track pad. They envision that the technology could let users control wireless devices when their hands are full -- answering the phone while cooking, for instance. It could also augment other interfaces, allowing someone texting on a cellphone, say, to toggle between symbol sets without interrupting his or her typing. Finally, it could enable subtle communication in circumstances that require it, such as sending a quick text to a child while attending an important meeting.
Categories: Science

How ancient species survived or died off in their old Kentucky home

Science Daily - Thu, 16/04/2015 - 7:53pm
Researchers at an old geological site talk 'dirt' about how Ice Age climate change led to the extinction of mammoths and mastodons, but to the evolution and survival of bison, deer and other present-day species.
Categories: Science

A scientific look at the art of teacher talk

Science Daily - Thu, 16/04/2015 - 7:53pm
Specific ways teachers talk to their students had a direct impact on literacy skill building in a study of elementary school students, experts say.
Categories: Science

Social shaming and the search for validation

Science Daily - Thu, 16/04/2015 - 7:52pm
A sociologist professor outlines the social conditions that breed online complaining and hashtag activism.
Categories: Science

A 2-Year-Old Has Become the Youngest Person Ever To Be Cryonically Frozen

Slashdot - Thu, 16/04/2015 - 7:44pm
merbs writes: After losing a long battle with brain cancer, 2-year-old Matheryn Naovaratpong became the first minor ever to be cryogenically frozen. This article is the story of how a Thai girl was frozen in Bangkok and shipped to Arizona to have her brain preserved in liquid nitrogen, while medical science works on a cure. "Typically we’d move the head from the trunk of the body. We didn't know what their reaction would be from the family, the mortuary, from border officials; this has to go through a number of shipping venues, customs, the TSA and so on. To see a frozen head in a box might have raised a number of red flags. In the U.S. that’s not a big deal, but there, they may not be accustomed."

Read more of this story at Slashdot.

Categories: Science

Mercury Probe's Dramatic Death Plunge Set for April 30

Space.com - Thu, 16/04/2015 - 7:33pm
NASA's MESSENGER probe, which has been circling Mercury since March 2011, is nearly out of fuel and will say goodbye with a dramatic death plunge on April 30, provided one final orbit-raising maneuver scheduled for April 24 goes as planned.
Categories: Science

Etsy’s Surging IPO Shows Losing Your Indie Cred Pays Off

Wired News - Thu, 16/04/2015 - 7:27pm

For many of Etsy's millions of sellers and buyers, today’s IPO success is likely bittersweet.

The post Etsy’s Surging IPO Shows Losing Your Indie Cred Pays Off appeared first on WIRED.








Categories: Science

Audio Visuals: Twitter Will Chew You Up and Spit You Out

Wired News - Thu, 16/04/2015 - 7:25pm

This week's music video roundup has your new favorite cover of a Backstreet Boys song, Snoop Dogg, and a few other tasty treats.

The post Audio Visuals: Twitter Will Chew You Up and Spit You Out appeared first on WIRED.








Categories: Science

Of Mice and Synthetic Muscle: Big Science On SpaceX Dragon Spaceship

Space.com - Thu, 16/04/2015 - 7:08pm
Experiments for the International Space Station's first one-year crew will be among Dragon's precious cargo when it arrives at the orbiting complex this week.
Categories: Science