research

Facebook usage increases with sleep deprivation, says study

Facebook usage increases with sleep deprivation, says study

Is your amount of Facebook usage going up recently? It might be because you're not getting enough sleep. Researchers at the University of California Irvine have conducted a study recently that shows a direct connection between sleep deprivation and spending more time on Facebook. Now, this isn't the same as frequently being on Facebook leading to poor sleep patterns, but rather the opposite.

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Battery charging tech turns seawater into fresh water

Battery charging tech turns seawater into fresh water

Researchers with the University of Illinois’ Department of Mechanical Science and Engineering have revealed that battery charging technology could end up being a viable desalination method, turning seawater into fresh water. This process works by putting seawater in a modified battery and then charging the battery with electricity, causing the salt ions to be pulled from the water.

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New Johnny Cash Spider discovered near Folsom Prison

New Johnny Cash Spider discovered near Folsom Prison

You might be able to guess right off the bat where the spider "Aphonopelma johnnycashi" got its name. Having been discovered in the desert southwest, right near Folsom Prison in Folsom, California, this particular spider has been named after the musician famous for having played a concert at the prison/venue back in 1968: Johnny Cash himself. And it's not alone. This spider is just one of a set of new tarantulas that are being added to the pack this week.

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This robot chameleon changes colors faster than the real thing

This robot chameleon changes colors faster than the real thing

The future of color-changing body armor may be here, and it's in the form of this chameleon-shaped robot. Researchers from China's Wuhan University took a 3D-printed model (which also resembles a cat, but let's not split hairs) and covered it in plasmonic displays, which can produce colors and rapidly change between them by detecting the background with light sensors.

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Soft robotic gripper has strength and dexterity for lifting delicate objects

Soft robotic gripper has strength and dexterity for lifting delicate objects

Robotics designers have a tough job in creating lifting "hands" for robotic machines and devices that have the strength to lift items that are heavy while having the ability to handle delicate objects without breaking them. Using electroadhesion, the principal that allows a balloon to stick to a wall after you rub it on your hair, gripping devices for robots may have been changed significantly.

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Baby star has planet-forming disk that confounds scientists

Baby star has planet-forming disk that confounds scientists

Astronomers have been studying something far away from the Earth in the Rho Ophiuchi star formation region. Inside this region is a very young star known as 2MASS J16281370-2431391 that is about 400 light years away from Earth. This infant star has a planetary formation disk around it that is disk edge on to us here on Earth.

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Researchers recommend approving 3-parent babies for boys only

Researchers recommend approving 3-parent babies for boys only

Three-parent babies is a topic under scrutiny and criticism, not unlike genetically modified human embryos. Under request by the U.S. FDA, the Institute of Medicine has evaluated the notion of three-parent babies and has now published its report. In it, the Institute of Medicine recommends that in cases where there’s risk of mitochondrial diseases, three-parent babies should be allowed. But only if the babies produced are boys.

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Researchers develop carbon nanotube material stronger than kevlar

Researchers develop carbon nanotube material stronger than kevlar

While the material pictured above might not look like much, it is actually both stronger and more pliable than kevlar or carbon fiber. Developed by researchers from the East China University of Science & Technology, the film is made from carbon nanotubes, getting its strength from tubes that remain aligned parallel to each other, as opposed to other materials that use different layouts.

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UK researchers get permission to genetically modify human embryos

UK researchers get permission to genetically modify human embryos

In September 2015, word surfaced that researchers in the UK had requested permission to genetically modify human embryos, a controversial subject that has stirred both legitimate and conspiratorial concerns alike. This request -- and subsequent permission -- follows news from last year claiming Chinese scientists had performed gene editing on human embryos. Critics fear this will lead to so-called "designer babies."

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Ancient humans ate giant Aussie birds’ eggs into extinction

Ancient humans ate giant Aussie birds’ eggs into extinction

About 50,000 years ago, Australia was home to a flightless bird species known as Genyornis newtoni. This wasn’t a bird like you or I know them — they grew to be almost 7ft tall and weighed hundreds of pounds. Still, those formidable birds first hatched from small (relatively speaking) eggs, and those eggs were apparently tasty to humans who lived in the region. For the first time, researchers have found evidence that humans — and their appetites — drove the birds into extinction.

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Massive Gas cloud boomerangs back to our Milky Way – but don’t fret!

Massive Gas cloud boomerangs back to our Milky Way – but don’t fret!

A beastly cloud of gas is headed towards our galaxy right this minute - but it won't arrive for 30 million years. What's interesting about this particular gas is not only that it's traveling at 700,000 miles per hour, but that it's been here before. This "Smith Cloud" as it's called came from the Milky Way and to the Milky Way it will return - 70 million years ago it left, and 30 million years from now it'll have swung around for the return.

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Mammoth bones unearthed in OSU football stadium

Mammoth bones unearthed in OSU football stadium

Construction crews have unearthed mammoth bones in Oregon State University’s Reser Stadium. The discovery was made in the stadium’s north end zone earlier this week, and it wasn’t a lone find — researchers have since unearthed remains from several other extinct mammals in the area, making it a very fruitful find. Finer details about the bones will be available after researchers conduct their study.

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