research

US Army open sources security code to fight cyber attacks

US Army open sources security code to fight cyber attacks

The US Army recently posted a security code to GitHub with a goal of open-sourcing it to better understand when they come under cyber attack. Called Dshell, the code has been used for the past five years to analyze attacks on Department of Defense networks. The US Army Research Laboratory (ARL) believes that the kind of cyber attacks launched on the government can be similar to those on the general public. Thus, they hope to get feedback from non-government users to better understand and prevent future attacks.

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Hand of God nebula captured by Very Large Telescope

Hand of God nebula captured by Very Large Telescope

This week the European Southern Observatory (ESO)'s "Very Large Telescope" (VLT) captured an image of the Hand of God. This nebulous globule is also known as "Maw of the Beast", and lies around 1,300 light years away from the planet Earth. This image was captured as a part of ESO's "Comic Gems" program which is aimed at capturing images with telescopes such as the Very Large Telescope for education in classrooms and public outreach. The Very Large Telescope operates at the Paranal Observatory.

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Big Bang echoes just cosmic dust BICEP2 investigation finds

Big Bang echoes just cosmic dust BICEP2 investigation finds

It was supposed to be evidence of the first shudderings of the universe, a post-Big Bang ripple of cosmic inflation finally spotted by the BICEP2 telescope, but scientists have finally admitted they got it wrong. The unexpected announcement last March that researchers had identified primordial gravitational waves they believed dated back to the moments right after the formation of the universe had led to suggestions that the US team responsible could win a Nobel Prize. Now, though, the European Space Agency has confirmed that what was thought to be a huge cosmic discovery from a trillionth of a trillionth of a trillionth of a second, all of fourteen billion years ago, was in fact just dust.

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Google’s Project Tango graduates from skunkworks

Google’s Project Tango graduates from skunkworks

Google Glass isn't alone in getting shuffled around Google, with the 3D-tracking tablet Project Tango graduating today from the Advanced Technology and Projects division. Tango, which aims to do for indoor positioning and 3D mapping what GPS did for navigation, uses a combination of precise movement sensors, cameras, and depth-tracking to build up complex 3D environments in real-time, has until now been placed within Google ATAP, the company's ideas incubator. Now, with developer hardware in the wild, it's time for Tango to get serious.

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Turns out, Americans don’t believe what Scientists know

Turns out, Americans don’t believe what Scientists know

Science may be all about quantifiable facts rather than beliefs, but the gulf between what scientists think and what the US public at large believes true is shockingly wide, new research suggests. Although scientific endeavor is rated highly by the general public, some of the conclusions involved are less accepted, with climate change, genetically-modified foods, and childhood vaccinations all not only hot topics but areas where opinions diverge considerably. That opens up a tricky can of worms, researchers at Pew warn, where future studies could be at risk because they can't communicate their potential worth successfully with the general public and policymakers.

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Toyota looks beyond bigger batteries for EV range boost

Toyota looks beyond bigger batteries for EV range boost

Electric and hybrid cars may be waiting on improved battery technology to squash driver range anxiety, but Toyota believes it may have a wildcard in the meantime. The company is rolling out two new prototypes for real-world testing in Japan, each switching in new silicon carbide (SiC) power semiconductors that could take a big bite out of the 20-percent of electrical power loss traditional components are responsible for. The technology in the two vehicles - a Toyota Camry and a fuel cell bus - could end up in production cars sooner rather than later, Toyota promises.

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One Billion Androids: Google OS breaks record in 2014

One Billion Androids: Google OS breaks record in 2014

It's not quite the android uprising Bill Gates and Elon Musk are afraid of, but it's domination of another sort, with shipments of smartphones running Google's OS topping one billion in 2014. The global milestone came as smartphone sales overall grew year-on-year, according to Strategy Analytics, with Android propelling its overall market share to more than 81-percent. For Google, it's the first year that Android shipments have reached one billion in just a twelve month period, though as we've seen in recent days, not every Android device manufacturer is celebrating.

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Jurrasic World for real: new “dragon” dinosaur turns up in China

Jurrasic World for real: new “dragon” dinosaur turns up in China

At 15-meters long, Qijianglong (pronounced “CHI-jyang-lon") was not a small dinosaur. Half of its length was made up of neck, while a tiny head sat on one end and a four-legged hulk of a body sat at the other. The digging site at which this animal was found was first discovered in 2006, and only now have paleontologists gotten to a point where they're comfortable confirming the new species, long neck and head included. This creature is from the mamenchisaurids family and the sauropodomorpha (sauropod) suborder - long necked, plant-eating dinosaurs found all around the world.

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Sorry Samsung, Apple’s probably the smartphone king

Sorry Samsung, Apple’s probably the smartphone king

Apple's Q4 2014 may not only have been its best quarter ever for iPhone sales, but the point at which it overtook arch-rival Samsung in the smartphone business. The Cupertino firm announced a massive 74.5m iPhone sales in the final three months of last year, setting itself a new record and - according to at least one research firm - putting it on at least level-pegging with Samsung. The South Korean company has played coy with its Galaxy numbers, but it's clear that Apple's rapid ascent has dramatically closed (if not destroyed) the gap between the two.

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Skull shows earliest Humans and Neanderthals cross-breed

Skull shows earliest Humans and Neanderthals cross-breed

A 55,000-year-old skull has been discovered in a cave in western Galilee, one that's going by the name "Manot." According to a study published this week in Nature, this is the oldest representation of human life in a place and time in which Neanderthals are known to have lived. This skull shows features found in both European Neaderthals and humans around the time the being it belonged to died. Anatomically Modern Humans and Neantherthal traits are both present, and the team that've published the study we're seeing today seem to think they've found something rather extraordinary.

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