Science & Technology

Trump names seven to revived presidential science advisory panel

October 23, 2019

President Donald Trump has chosen a group of business leaders to advise him on science and technology policy. The White House today announced the first seven of an expected group of 16 members of the President’s Council of Advisors on Science and Technology (PCAST). Only one is an academic--Birgitta Whaley, a chemistry professor at the University of California, Berkeley, who leads its center on quantum information and computation science--although five of the appointees hold Ph.D.s.

The 1st Human on Mars May Be a Woman, NASA Chief Says

October 22, 2019

When NASA sends humans to the moon for the first time in more than half a century, one lucky astronaut will go down in history for becoming the first woman on the moon. Then it won't be long before we see the first woman on Mars, and she just might beat the first man there, according to NASA Administrator Jim Bridenstine.

Is this how we'll live on Mars?

October 22, 2019

What would a home on Mars look like? What sort of clothes would we wear on the Red Planet? And how would we grow our food? The answers to some of these questions are beautifully imagined in a new exhibition, "Moving to Mars," at London's Design Museum.

The Delicate Ethics of Using Facial Recognition in Schools

October 20, 2019

WIRED identified eight public school systems, from rural areas to giant urban districts, that have moved to install facial recognition systems in the past year. There likely are many more. The technology watched over thousands of students returning to school in recent weeks, continually checking faces against watch lists compiled by school officials and law enforcement.

NASA Astronauts Make History with 1st All-Woman Spacewalk

October 20, 2019

The historic extravehicular activity (EVA) began at 7:38 EDT (1138 GMT), which was ahead of schedule as the spacewalk was slated to begin at 7:50 EDT (1150 GMT). The spacewalk, which officially began once both astronauts switched to battery power in their spacesuits, was guided by veteran NASA astronaut and capsule communicator (CAPCOM) Stephanie Wilson on the ground and fellow astronauts Luca Parmitano and Andrew Morgan located on the International Space Station.

What's it like to live on the International Space Station?

October 20, 2019

The International Space Station is an orbiting space laboratory, assembled through a decades-long collaboration of countries. The 360-ton space station is larger than a five-bedroom house -- just much longer and narrower. It has enough room for six sleeping quarters, a gym, a 360-degree viewing window, and areas to conduct a wide array of science experiments. "We've had continuous human presence on the space station for 19 years now," said NASA spokeswoman Stephanie Schierholz. "It is an unprecedented international collaboration among nations."

Bill Recognizing 'Hidden Figures' for Contributions to U.S. during the Space Race Headed to President Trump's Desk to become Law

October 20, 2019

House Science, Space, and Technology Ranking Member Frank Lucas (R-OK), along with Chairwoman Eddie Bernice Johnson (D-TX) and U.S. Senators Chris Coons (D-DE.), Lisa Murkowski (R-AK), and Kamala Harris (D-CA) applauded the congressional passage of a bipartisan bill they introduced, along with hundreds of their colleagues, to award Congressional Gold Medals to Katherine Johnson and Dr. Christine Darden and to posthumously award Congressional Gold Medals to Dorothy Vaughan and Mary Jackson.

Weapons Makers Unveil A Herd of Robotanks - As the Army Worries about Battlefield Bandwidth

October 17, 2019

The show floor of the country’s biggest land-warfare convention was crowded with robot tanks this week, roughly two years after the U.S. Army’s declaration that its core 5-year priorities include a new combat vehicle. Among them, and with the greatest fanfare, Textron unveiled its Ripsaw, a 10-ton, 20-foot electrically-powered treaded minitank that can carry a small aerial drone on its back and can pop a smaller ground robot out of a front compartment.

Artificial Intelligence Has a Powerful Brain, but It Still Needs a Heart

October 17, 2019

So far, efforts to cultivate algorithmic fairness lag far behind the enthusiasm to adopt the technology. Industry, with its drive for competitive advantage and focus on profits, has shown little inclination to shoulder this responsibility. The institution that needs to play a critical role in leading the way to an AI-powered world that is both ethical and fair is higher education.

Why don't more women win Nobel Prizes in science?

October 17, 2019

The rarity of female Nobel laureates raises questions about women's exclusion from education and careers in science. Female researchers have come a long way over the past century. But there's overwhelming evidence that women remain underrepresented in the STEM fields of science, technology, engineering and math.

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