Author Archives: Brittany A. Roston


The ISS is full of microbes, and NASA may get a shipment of them today

The ISS is full of microbes, and NASA may get a shipment of them today

The International Space Station is home to all manner of experiments, being used to test everything from how plants grow in space to how whiskey is affected. The ISS is also home to to various Earth microbes that are being exposed to a microgravity environment, presenting researchers with a chance to study how such an environment affects them. The space agency is performing a three-part study on these microbes, and it might get its final batch in a shipment from space today.

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Man knocks drone out of the sky by throwing a spear at it

Man knocks drone out of the sky by throwing a spear at it

Drones are fun and all, but critics raise two big concerns: potential safety issues (remember the toddler who lost his eye?), and potential privacy violations. The latter, whether real or perceived, has caused quite a ruckus at times -- an entire legal case revolved around someone shooting a drone out of the sky, for example. Arguably the most interesting takedown to date, though, involves a Russian man and his spear.

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Hyperloop One will conduct a propulsion test in Vegas tomorrow

Hyperloop One will conduct a propulsion test in Vegas tomorrow

The company formally known as Hyperloop Technologies has announced a name change that brings it more in line with the company’s ‘singular leadership and incredible progress,’ it announced this evening. Henceforth, the company shall be known as Hyperloop One, and the name change comes just in time — the company will be conducting a propulsion open-air test in North Las Vegas tomorrow, marking the start of what it says will be a series of ‘full-scale tests’ as it tries to develop the Hyperloop transportation system.

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Netflix may ruin studio by refusing to adjust contract dates

Netflix may ruin studio by refusing to adjust contract dates

Netflix is on the receiving end of some incredulous stares and disappointed head-shaking, according to a new report. The company is planning to stream a pair of films from producer Relativity Media LLC before they arrive in theaters, and it may be able to do so because of the current contract in place. The studio, it turns out, ran into some pretty big financial troubles and is banking on movies “Masterminds” and “The Disappointments Room” pulling it out of the frying pan. While making some big financial adjustments, the company had to delay the theatrical release of both movies, and the expectation was that Netflix would agree to adjust its streaming dates for after the theatrical releases. Netflix, though, says it is going to proceed with the original dates against the studio’s wishes.

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Slack introduces ‘Sign in with Slack’ option for developers

Slack introduces ‘Sign in with Slack’ option for developers

Slack has introduced a new sign-in option developers can add to their apps — ‘Sign in with Slack.’ With it, Slack users can use their Slack credentials to sign up for an app that supports it. This feature has the added benefit of keeping Slack teams connected with each other across other apps, says Slack, and brings with it a few benefits for developers, too.

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Verizon and ESPN finally settle their skinny-bundle squabble

Verizon and ESPN finally settle their skinny-bundle squabble

More than a year ago, ESPN sued Verizon for alleged breach of contract over the latter company’s then-new skinny bundle packages that, according to ESPN, violated a contract between the two companies. Now, finally, the duo has announced a settlement that puts the matter to rest, but they didn’t provide any details about what the settlement entails. Recent changes to Verizon's channel options, though, hint at what may have happened behind closed doors.

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Teen finds lost Mayan city using his own star map discovery

Teen finds lost Mayan city using his own star map discovery

A 15-year-old Canadian teenager has seemingly discovered a long-lost Mayan city after noticing previously-undiscovered correlations between maps of star constellations and the locations of the largest (known) Mayan cities. At some point William Gadoury realized that the two matched up — something, apparently, no one had ever noticed before. After using his discovery to match 117 Mayan cities with 22 star constellations, he discovered that one was missing…and, soon after, satellites revealed that he had probably pinpointed it correctly on a map.

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Samsung EVO Plus 256GB microSD card arrives in June

Samsung EVO Plus 256GB microSD card arrives in June

Samsung has just taken the wraps off a crazy-small way to carry around a lot of data, relatively speaking: the EVO Plus 256GB microSD card. According to Samsung, this is the highest-capacity microSD card in its class, and it comes just in time for all the 4K cameras and VR video rigs hitting the consumer market. Pop the card into your camera, for example, and you can record up to 12 hours of Ultra HD 4K-resolution videos.

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Volvo launches two-hour in-car package delivery in Stockholm

Volvo launches two-hour in-car package delivery in Stockholm

Volvo is launching a new delivery service that will bring deliveries directly to a consumer’s Volvo within two hours, the company has announced. Called ‘In-Car Delivery,’ it’s exactly what it sounds like — a delivery service that deposits the packages directly into your car, making it more convenient to receive items while you're at work or otherwise away from home.

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Sea swallows five Solomon Islands as water levels rise

Sea swallows five Solomon Islands as water levels rise

Climate change has claimed five small Pacific islands, according to a new report in the journal Environmental Researcher Letters. None of the islands were home to humans, and they ranged in size from 2.5 to 12.4 acres — not huge, certainly, but still quite large and equally beautiful. The five are among the Solomon Islands, and they aren’t the only casualties of rising water levels — half a dozen other islands in the region have lost large portions of their land to the sea, and in some cases, villages were destroyed and their residents had to flee.

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‘Orange is the New Black’ trailer teases a dark fourth season

‘Orange is the New Black’ trailer teases a dark fourth season

The fourth season of Netflix's Orange is the New Black arrives next month, and that mean it's time for a trailer. Netflix bestowed us with a long look at the upcoming season today, and it's a doozy. New inmates have arrived at Litchfield, old inmates are at each other's throats, and the days of lackadaisical enforcement appear to be long, long gone.

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NASA: Kepler has discovered (at least) 1,284 new planets

NASA: Kepler has discovered (at least) 1,284 new planets

NASA has unleashed some big news today: out of thousands of potential new planets spotted by the Kepler space telescope, 1,284 of them have been verified as new planets, and that could just be the start of things. It all started with Kepler’s July 2015 catalog of potential planets — there were 4,302 of them in total. Following an analysis, NASA determined that 1,284 of them are probably planets (greater than 99-percent odds), and that another 1,327 potential planets may be added to the ‘verified planets’ list after additional analyses are wrapped up.

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