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Virtual Reality Is Helping String Theory Come to Life

3 June 2017 - 12:04am
Nick Stockton, Wired
The robot is building a tesseract. He motions at a glowing cube floating before him, and an identical cube emerges. He drags it to the left, but the two cubes stay connected, strung together by glowing lines radiating from their corners. The robot lowers its hands, and the cubes coalesce into a single shapewith 24 square faces, 16 vertices, and eight connected cubes existing in four dimensions. A tesseract.
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Do Chess Players Have Higher IQs?

2 June 2017 - 9:09pm
Alex B. Berezow, ACSH
American culture is dominated by a can-do attitude. The prevailing belief is that no matter who you are, you can do whatever you want, as long as you work hard enough. When little Johnny says he wants to be an astronaut, everybody cheers his ambition. However, those who know little Johnny are secretly thinking, "You ain't smart enough, kid."Though we don't like to admit it, intelligence and IQ matter. Creative people tend to have higher IQs. The traditional view is that expertise, in general, requires a higher IQ.
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US Withdraws From Paris Climate Accord

2 June 2017 - 9:09pm
Jeff Tollefson, Nature News
US President Donald Trump has decided to withdraw the United States from the 2015 Paris climate accord, after months of heated debate among members of his administration. More than 190 nations agreed to the pact in December 2015, pledging to hold average global temperatures to 1.52C above pre-industrial levels.The United States will withdraw from the Paris climate accord but begin negotiations to re-enter either the Paris accord or an entirely new transaction on terms that are fair to the United States and its businesses, workers and taxpayers, Trump said during a press...
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Why Is Human Vulnerability in Vogue?

2 June 2017 - 9:09pm
Claire Colebrook, Aeon Magazine
The end of the world is a growth industry. You can almost feel Armageddon in the air: from survivalist and prepper' websites (survivopedia.com, doomandbloom.net, prepforshtf.com) to new academic disciplines (disaster studies', Anthropocene studies', extinction studies'), human vulnerability is in vogue.The panic isn't merely about civilisational threats, but existential ones. Beyond doomsday proclamations about mass extinction, climate change, viral pandemics, global systemic collapse and resource depletion, we seem to be seized by an anxiety about losing the qualities that make...
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Martian Lake Had Life-Supporting Environments

2 June 2017 - 9:09pm
Mike Wall, Space.com
he window of opportunity for life to arise on ancient Mars was apparently broader than scientists had thought.The lake that once filled much of Mars' huge Gale Crater featured multiple potentially habitable environments segregated by depth, as some water bodies here on Earth do, a new study based on observations by NASA's Curiosity rover suggests."This chemical stratification might've provided a sort of menu of options for any microbes that preferred one environment over the other to take advantage of," study lead author Joel Hurowitz, a geoscientist at Stony Brook University in New York,...
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Eating Less May Lengthen Your Life

2 June 2017 - 9:09pm
Alex Riley, BBC Future
In a restaurant setting sometime in the not-too distant future, a man and a woman are on their first date. After the initial nerves subside, all is going well.The man is 33, he says, has been single for most of those years, and, although he doesn't mention it, knows he is looking to settle down and have a family. The woman replies that she is 52, has been married, divorced, and has children in their early 20s. He had no idea she looked his age, or younger.
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Buying Your Own Piece of the Final Frontier

2 June 2017 - 9:08pm
Fraser Cain, Universe Today
Compared to a regular human, the Earth is enormous. And compared to the Earth, the Universe is really enormous. Like, maybe infinitely enormous.And yet, Earth is the only place humans are allowed to own. You can buy a plot of land in the city or the country, but you can't buy land on the Moon, on Mars or on Alpha Centauri.It's not that someone wouldn't be willing to sell it to you. I could point you at a few locations on the internet where someone would be glad to exchange your Earth money for some property rights on the Moon. But I can also point you to a series of United Nations...
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Fleeing Paris Accord Makes Scientific Sense

2 June 2017 - 8:16am
Tom Hartsfield, RCScience
President Trump's announcement of the United States' withdrawal from the Paris Accord climate agreement is a bombshell news story. His declaration has met with widespread condemnation in the press and scientific outlets. These critics raise some good points.Piecing together a broad international agreement that extracts concessions from hundreds of nations is a Herculean effort.There's no guarantee that if this accord falls apart a future agreement could be reached againif it should be deemed necessary.
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