Hurricane Dorian Shows We Are Losing the Fight Against Global Warming
2019-09-01 22:29:33 UTC
As Hurricane Dorian churns its way through the Atlantic, we need to recognize that climate change can make any hurricane more intense and Category 5 hurricanes more likely. Burning fossil fuels such as coal, oil and natural gas, release carbon dioxide and methane into Earth’s atmosphere. These gases trap heat, which means that globally, both air temperatures as well as water temperatures have increased and are continuing to increase.
Warmer air leads to more evaporation, which in turn leads to more precipitation. Then the warmer water provides more fuel for the hurricanes. Water has very high heat capacity, which means it’s ...
Scientists Find Micro Plastic in Arctic Ice
2019-08-14 23:33:28 UTC
LONDON (Reuters) - Tiny pieces of plastic have been found in ice cores drilled in the Arctic by a U.S.-led team of scientists, underscoring the threat the growing form of pollution poses to marine life in even the remotest waters on the planet.
The researchers used a helicopter to land on ice floes and retrieve the samples during an 18-day icebreaker expedition through the Northwest Passage, the hazardous route linking the Pacific and Atlantic oceans.
“We had spent weeks looking out at what looks so much like pristine white sea ice floating out on the ocean,” said Jacob Strock, a graduate student researcher at the University of Rhode...
Russia Asks Google to Stop Advertising “Illegal Mass Events”
2019-08-11 16:07:42 UTC
MOSCOW (Reuters) - Russia’s state communications watchdog said on Sunday it had asked Google to stop advertising “illegal mass events” on its YouTube video platform.
Tens of thousands of Russians staged what observers called the country’s biggest political protest for eight years on Saturday, defying a crackdown to demand free elections to Moscow’s city legislature.
The watchdog, Roscomnadzor, said Russia would consider it interference in its sovereign affairs and a hostile influence should Google fails to respond to the request.
<I>Reporting by Andrey Ostroukh; Editing by Janet Lawrence</I>
Steve Jobs Design Chief to Start Own Firm
2019-06-28 00:58:11 UTC
(Reuters) - Jony Ive, a close creative collaborator with Apple Inc co-founder Steve Jobs whose iPhone and other designs fueled Apple’s rise to become a $1 trillion company, will leave later this year to form an independent design company.
Apple said Ive will continue work on its products at his new venture, but shares fell as much as 1.5% to $197.44 in after-market trading, wiping about $9 billion from the firm’s value.
Ive spent nearly three decades at Apple, playing a leading role in the design of the candy-colored iMacs that helped Apple re-emerge from near death in the 1990s to the iPhone, regarded by many business experts as one...
Japan Eats Whale Despite Environmental Concerns
2019-06-24 04:59:19 UTC
MINAMIBOSO, Japan (Reuters) - Whale cutlets, sliced raw whale, deep-fried whale nuggets, whale bacon and whale jerky feature on the menu at the restaurant Yoko Ichihara runs - and that's just a small sample of the ways Japan eats whale.
Though Japan's government maintains that eating whale is a cherished part of its food culture, nationwide consumption didn't really take off until after World War Two and peaked in the early 1960s before falling as other protein sources became cheaply available.
A 1986 global whaling moratorium made whale a pricey food that rarely appears on family tables or in ordinary supermarkets, with vendors rely...
Hunt for Shoppers: Luxury Brands Raising Stakes on Instagram
2019-06-07 16:10:35 UTC
PARIS (Reuters) - Big-spending luxury brands like Gucci, Louis Vuitton and Christian Dior are splashing out on everything from dance-fuelled fashion shows to teams of advisers as they target social media platforms in the hunt for young shoppers.
Without the entry barriers of magazine advertising - where a one page glossy ad can cost tens of thousands of dollars - sites like Instagram, a fashionista favorite, have allowed unknown labels to find an audience with canny or eye-catching campaigns.
But big bucks are changing the game as cash rich luxury goods groups like LVMH and Kering hike their social media budgets, giving them vast mea...
Apple wants its login button above Google and Facebook
2019-06-05 05:23:38 UTC
(Reuters) - Apple Inc will ask developers to position a new “Sign on with Apple” button in iPhone and iPad apps above rival buttons from Alphabet Inc’s Google and Facebook Inc, according to design guidelines released this week.
The move to give Apple prime placement is significant because users often select the default or top option on apps. And Apple will require apps to offer its button if they want to offer options to login with Facebook or Google.
Apple unveiled its login button on Monday, emphasizing users’ privacy and also introducing a feature that randomly generates an email address to avoid revealing the person’s true email....
Dutchman Travels Across 33 Countries on Electric Car
2019-04-18 22:49:36 UTC
Dutchman Wiebe Wakker on Sunday ended a 95,000 kilometer (59,000 mile) electric car journey that he hoped would show the world the viability of such vehicles.
Wakker arrived in the eastern Australian city of Sydney after driving his retrofitted station wagon nicknamed "The Blue Bandit" across 33 countries including Turkey, Iran, India, Myanmar, Malaysia and Indonesia, with the route determined by the offers he received on his website.
The trip started in the Netherlands and took just over three years. It was funded by public donations from around the globe, including electricity to charge the "Bandit," food and accommodation.
Facebook Bans White Nationalism and Separatism on Its Platforms
2019-03-27 18:01:14 UTC
<p>(Reuters) - Facebook Inc on Wednesday announced a ban on praise, support and representation of white nationalism and separatism on its social media platforms, furthering its efforts to tackle hate speech. </p><p>These bans will be enforced next week, the social media giant said in a blog <a href="https://newsroom.fb.com/news/2019/03/standing-against-hate">here</a> post. </p><p>Facebook said it would also start connecting people who search for terms associated with white supremacy to organizations focused on helping people leave behind hate groups. </p><p>Reporting by Sonam Rai in Bengaluru; Editing by Anil D'Silva</p>
Chinese Company to Sell Popular Dating App Grindr
2019-03-27 17:54:06 UTC
(Reuters) - Chinese gaming company Beijing Kunlun Tech Co Ltd is seeking to sell Grindr LLC, the popular gay dating app it has owned since 2016, after a U.S. government national security panel raised concerns about its ownership, according to people familiar with the matter.
The Committee on Foreign Investment in the United States (CFIUS) has informed Kunlun that its ownership of West Hollywood, California-based Grindr constitutes a national security risk, the two sources said.
CFIUS’ specific concerns and whether any attempt was made to mitigate them could not be learned. The United States has been increasingly scrutinizing app deve...
Scientists' evidence for man-made global warming hits 'gold standard'
2019-02-25 18:33:18 UTC
OSLO (Reuters) - Evidence for man-made global warming has reached a “gold standard” level of certainty, adding pressure for cuts in greenhouse gases to limit rising temperatures, scientists said on Monday.
“Humanity cannot afford to ignore such clear signals,” the U.S.-led team wrote in the journal Nature Climate Change of satellite measurements of rising temperatures over the past 40 years.
They said confidence that human activities were raising the heat at the Earth’s surface had reached a “five-sigma” level, a statistical gauge meaning there is only a one-in-a-million chance that the signal would appear if there was no warming.
Germany to Accelerate Development of Autonomous Driving
2019-01-23 18:33:15 UTC
FRANKFURT (Reuters) - Germany’s top carmakers including BMW and Volkswagen are looking at ways to speed up development of the next generation of self-driving cars, possibly by even working together, as tech giant Google forges ahead with plans to mass produce such vehicles.
Carmakers and tech companies have been in a race to develop self-driving robotaxis since 2012 when Google unveiled a self-driving car. BMW announced a development pact with tech firm Mobileye in 2016 and Daimler struck an alliance with autos supplier Bosch in 2017.
BMW and Daimler’s first-generation autonomous cars will start to emerge after 2020/2021 using comput...
China's Chang'e-4 Probe Touched Down on Far Side of Moon
2019-01-06 05:35:05 UTC
China's Chang'e-4 probe touched down on the far side of the moon, state broadcaster CCTV reported on Thursday morning.
The successful "soft landing" marks a groundbreaking development in space exploration, being the first time that a spacecraft has landed on the side of the moon that faces away from Earth.
Chang'e-4, which is named after the Chinese goddess of the moon, entered its planned orbit to allow the landing on Sunday.
It landed in the Von Karman crater, which is in the lunar South Pole's Aitken Basin, at about 0226 UTC.
<strong>Lunar surface explorer</strong>
Chang'e-4 is set to release a rover to map contours and surface...
China’s Population to Reach 1.442 Billion in 2029
2019-01-06 05:03:07 UTC
SHANGHAI (Reuters) - China’s population is set to reach a peak of 1.442 billion in 2029 and start a long period of “unstoppable” decline in 2030, government scholars said in a research report published on Friday.
The world’s most populous country must now draw up policies to try to cope with a declining labor force and a rapidly ageing population, according to the summary of the latest edition of the “Green Book of Population and Labor” published by the China Academy of Social Sciences (CASS).
Growth in the working population had now stagnated, the report said, and the rising number of elderly people will have a far-reaching impact o...
Catastrophic Effects of Climate Change
2018-11-25 02:46:14 UTC
(Reuters) - Climate change will cost the U.S. economy hundreds of billions of dollars by the end of the century, hitting everything from health to infrastructure, according to a government report issued on Friday that the White House called inaccurate.
The congressionally mandated report, written with the help of more than a dozen U.S. government agencies and departments, outlined the projected impact of global warming on every corner of American society in a dire warning that is at odds with the Trump administration’s pro-fossil-fuels agenda.
“With continued growth in emissions at historic rates, annual losses in some economic secto...
Scientists show how toxoplasmosis parasite hides away in the brain
2018-11-13 17:21:30 UTC
<h3>Scientists have shown how the toxoplasmosis parasite hides away in the brain, altering synapses and potentially causing depression, schizophrenia and autism.</h3>
Mice infected with toxoplasmosis parasites behave strangely: They lose their natural fear of cats.
Presented with the smell of cat urine, they even seem attracted to the deadly predator, scientists have found. Toxoplasmosis is caused by the pathogen Toxoplasma gondii, a unicellular parasite that occurs worldwide. It affects birds and mammals, including humans. However, it can reproduce only in the digestive system of a cat.
<strong>From cat poo to car crashes</strong...
Parkinson's may get its start not in brain but in appendix
2018-10-31 21:29:40 UTC
WASHINGTON (AP) — Scientists have found a new clue that Parkinson’s disease may get its start not in the brain but in the gut — maybe in the appendix.
People who had their appendix removed early in life had a lower risk of getting the tremor-inducing brain disease decades later, researchers reported Wednesday.
Why? A peek at surgically removed appendix tissue shows this tiny organ, often considered useless, seems to be a storage depot for an abnormal protein — one that, if it somehow makes its way into the brain, becomes a hallmark of Parkinson’s.
The big surprise, according to studies published in the journal Science Translationa...
European lawmakers vote to ban single-use plastics
2018-10-25 19:15:10 UTC
European lawmakers have approved measures to reduce plastics polluting seas and oceans. A proposed ban targets the top 10 single-use plastic products that litter Europe's beaches.
The European Parliament on Wednesday approved measures that could lead to a ban on single-use plastic items, including straws, cotton swabs and disposable plastic plates and cutlery, by 2021. The parliament backed the proposals with a 571-53 majority.
In May, the European Commission proposed EU-wide rules to target the top 10 single-use plastic items that litter Europe's beaches or are found in its seas, as well as lost and abandoned fishing gea...
Facebook says hackers accessed data from 29 million accounts
2018-10-12 17:50:55 UTC
NEW YORK (AP) — Facebook says hackers accessed data from 29 million accounts as part of the security breach disclosed two weeks ago.
The exact number hadn’t been known before. Originally Facebook said 50 million accounts could have been affected, but Facebook didn’t know if they had been misused.
The hackers accessed name, email addresses or phone numbers from those 29 million accounts. For 14 million of those accounts, hackers got even more data, such as hometown, birthdate, the last 10 places they checked into or 15 most recent searches. One million accounts were affected but hackers didn’t gain information. The social media servic...
Dominated by men: Amazon scraps tool that showed bias against women
2018-10-11 21:53:47 UTC
SAN FRANCISCO (Reuters) - Amazon.com Inc’s (AMZN.O) machine-learning specialists uncovered a big problem: their new recruiting engine did not like women.
The team had been building computer programs since 2014 to review job applicants’ resumes with the aim of mechanizing the search for top talent, five people familiar with the effort told Reuters.
Automation has been key to Amazon’s e-commerce dominance, be it inside warehouses or driving pricing decisions.
<blockquote><h2>Amazon’s experimental hiring tool</h2>The company’s experimental hiring tool used artificial intelligence to give job candidates scores ranging from one to fiv...
Laser Trio Win Nobel Prize In Physics
2018-10-02 18:38:17 UTC
STOCKHOLM/LONDON (Reuters) - A trio of American, French and Canadian scientists won the 2018 Nobel Prize for Physics on Tuesday for breakthroughs in laser technology that have turned light beams into precision tools for everything from eye surgery to micro-machining.
They include the first female physics prize winner in 55 years.
Canada’s Donna Strickland, of the University of Waterloo, becomes only the third woman to win a Nobel for physics, after Marie Curie in 1903 and Maria Goeppert-Mayer in 1963.
Green crabs from Nova Scotia threaten coastal ecosystem
2018-09-19 05:21:29 UTC
BIDDEFORD, Maine (AP) — Canadians are known as friendly folks, but these crabby brutes migrating from Canadian waters are better suited for the hockey rink.
Green crabs from Nova Scotia are the same species as their cousins that already inhabit Maine waters, but are ornerier and angrier, threatening to accelerate harm to the coastal ecosystem by gobbling up soft-shell clams and destroying native eel grass, a researcher said.
The docile green crabs shrink from a threat, while the newcomers are more apt to wave their pincers and charge.
“What we’re seeing is this insane level of aggressiveness,” said Markus Frederich, a professor at...
Florence: US Facing the Challenges of Climate Change
2018-09-12 00:11:05 UTC
Hurricane Florence is moving relentlessly toward the Southeastern U.S. It's a large, powerful cyclone that will likely bring storm surge and high winds to coastal communities.
But climate scientists say one of the biggest threats posed by Florence is rain.
"Freshwater flooding poses the greatest risk to life," explains James Kossin, an atmospheric scientist for the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration and the University of Wisconsin, Madison. And Florence could cause extensive freshwater flooding for two reasons.
First, Florence is moving slowly and could all but stop when it reaches land.
"The storm could be over No...
Mercedes-Benz launches 'all-electric SUV with 450 km range'
2018-09-04 18:13:12 UTC
STOCKHOLM (Reuters) - Mercedes showed on Tuesday how it is “aggressively” gunning for top spot in upscale battery cars market currently dominated by Tesla, as it unveiled the EQC, its first fully electric car, at an event in Stockholm.
The event marks the start of the German onslaught against the American upstart and showcased a SUV with a 450 kilometer range, distinctively full-width rear light and clean-cut interiors that Mercedes hopes will find favor with luxury customers and tech-savvy millennials alike.
Daimler aims to have up to 10 electrified car variants by 2022, a target reiterated on Tuesday by Daimler CEO Dieter Zetsche, ...
Germany to end its reliance on 'cyber security' from US
2018-08-30 00:21:47 UTC
BERLIN (Reuters) - Germany announced a new agency on Wednesday to fund research on cyber security and to end its reliance on digital technologies from the United States, China and other countries.
Interior Minister Horst Seehofer told reporters that Germany needed new tools to become a top player in cyber security and shore up European security and independence.
“It is our joint goal for Germany to take a leading role in cyber security on an international level,” Seehofer told a news conference with Defence Minister Ursula von der Leyen. “We have to acknowledge we’re lagging behind, and when one is lagging, one needs completely new a...