research

NASA image shows bizarre circular mound on Mars

NASA image shows bizarre circular mound on Mars

We've seen quite a few pictures snapped beyond our own world -- there's the recent Europa image, for example -- and the newest shot from Mars is no different. What is unique is the natural structure it shows: a circular mound in an otherwise smooth landscape. NASA posted the image yesterday with a statement pondering what the feature might be, and it is leaning toward volcanism as being the cause. As always, we've the rest of the details available after the jump.

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UK gives driverless car cities green light for 2015

UK gives driverless car cities green light for 2015

Google may have had its self-driving cars pounding the streets of Mountain View for years now, but the UK is hoping to overtake the US in real-world autonomous vehicle deployment with a quartet of cities announcing plans for the technology. Greenwich, Milton Keynes, Coventry, and Bristol will each operate a driverless car system, funded both by private companies including insurers and the UK government, with projects covering automatic valet parking and private transportation pods.

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Weather stalls NASA Orion launch

Weather stalls NASA Orion launch

NASA's launch plans for the Orion spacecraft today have been hit with unexpectedly strong winds, leaving the first flight of the new capsule on hold as weather conditions are monitored. Orion was meant to blast off from Cape Canaveral at 7:05am EST today, but an automatic shutdown was triggered when systems caught strong winds whistling past the launch platform. A second attempt less than an hour later was similarly blocked by NASA's safety-conscious systems.

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Researchers create 100 billion fps 2D camera

Researchers create 100 billion fps 2D camera

Researchers have created a camera capable of imaging pulses of light. Using a technology called Compressed Ultrafast Photography, Washington University in St. Louis researchers have created a 2D receive-only camera capable of taking images at up to 100 billion frames-per-second -- something that far eclipses the 10 million or so frames-per-second presently available receive-only cameras are capable of. The researchers hope the camera will lead to new scientific discoveries, with the study's leader Lihong Wang saying, "For the first time, humans can see light pulses on the fly."

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Stephen Hawking’s voice gets a huge tech reboot

Stephen Hawking’s voice gets a huge tech reboot

Professor Stephen Hawking has been given a new voice, with an Intel-made communications system allowing the famed physicist to express himself more quickly, as well as opening the door to similar technology for others affected by similar diseases. Hawking, who has a motor neuron disease (MND) related to amyotrophic lateral sclerosis (ALS) which has left him almost completely paralyzed, can now type twice as fast as before, while other tasks like web searches are up to ten times faster. Intel is releasing the new software, three years in the making, under a free open-source license.

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NASA polishes Orion for first test flight Dec 4th

NASA polishes Orion for first test flight Dec 4th

NASA is readying the first flight of its new Orion spacecraft set to take place this week, as it refines the technology that is expected to one day take astronauts to Mars. Due to blast off on Thursday, December 4, Orion - and the mighty United Launch Alliance Delta IV Heavy rocket it will sit atop - won't be manned this time around, but instead used as a test-bed to see how well it will cosset future human passengers from dangers like radioactivity, heat, and more.

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Xbox One won the Black Friday battle says research

Xbox One won the Black Friday battle says research

Microsoft's Xbox One may be lagging behind the PlayStation 4 when it comes to hitting sales milestones, but the console proved to be the winner when it came to Black Friday demand, with one analysis firm declaring it the clear leader in retail interest. InfoScout crunched the sales numbers on over 180,000 receipts from US shoppers on Friday, November 31, and found that more than half of all consoles bought were the Xbox One. However, while it was forced into second place, the PS4 still had a better year than in 2013.

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Graphene may find use as Kevlar alternative

Graphene may find use as Kevlar alternative

Graphene is a wonder material that has lots of potential for use in electronics. Scientists all around the world are studying the material and the applications that it is suited for. One of those groups has been studying graphene for a use that has nothing to do with electronics; this group is looking at the material as a component for making body armor. Today body armor is typically made from Kevlar and other materials.

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We could fuel astronauts with human waste says research

We could fuel astronauts with human waste says research

Future astronauts and planetary colonists may end up breathing and watering plants with human waste, not to mention traveling in vehicles powered by it, if one research team has its way. NASA tasked the group at the University of Florida with figuring out what to do with the inevitable outcome of astronaut's freeze-dried meals, preferably something more productive than simply flushing it away into the nearest black hole. While the initial goal was lightening the load for space-faring folk, though, the research could have new implications down on Earth, too.

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Privacy puzzles and iPhone origin obscure finds Web IQ survey

Privacy puzzles and iPhone origin obscure finds Web IQ survey

Does a privacy policy really promise privacy, and is that Bill Gates or Steve Jobs? Turns out, not everyone is entirely up to speed on how the internet operates or where it came from, with new research from Pew Internet suggesting the US "Web IQ" is patchy at best. The survey firm checked recognition among internet users on topics like net neutrality, what Twitter's character limit is, and when the first iPhone was released, finding that while some topics are well understood, a lot of the basics could still do with some explaining.

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