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Human Mutation Is Slowing Down

Mutation Station The rate of mutation in the human genome has slowed significantly over the past million years or so, according to new research — firming up the timeline of primate evolution. “The times of speciation we can now calculate on the basis of the new rate fit in much better with the speciation times we […]

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Amazon is Unleashing Its Own Army of Delivery Robots

Amazon Scout To absolutely nobody’s surprise, Amazon announced today that it will roll out its own network of delivery robots. Amazon’s diminutive new six-wheeled friend is called Scout. It’ll deliver your packages, according to the company, without a need for a pesky and demanding human. Scout is about the size of a small cooler, and rolls along at […]

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See the Centaur-Like Robot Designed to Handle Nuclear Disasters

Robot Work Responding to a nuclear disaster is no job for humans. Even while wearing protective suits, our bodies can’t handle the radiation. It could be a job for robots, though. Researchers in the U.K. are developing a centaur-like robot designed to work in settings too dangerous for humans to navigate — and it could […]

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Flower Petals and Stems Transform into Animals and Insects in Inventive new Arrangements by Raku Inoue

Raku Inoue (previously) goes all-white in his latest flower petal compositions. The Montreal-based creative uses flower petals, stems, and leaves to form creatures ranging from owls and tigers to beetles and butterflies. Inoue takes advantage of the natural curvatures and shapes of his source materials to create lively interpretations of animals. In Inoue’s owl, densely-petaled […]

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See What Astronomers Are Calling “The Last Breath of a Dying Star”

Out With a Bang A new image shows a star, roughly 1,400 light years from Earth, preparing to die — and the moment is sad and beautiful. On Tuesday, the European Southern Observatory (ESO) released a new image of a star called ESO 577-24. Once a red giant, it is now an extremely hot dwarf star surrounded by a planetary nebula — […]

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New Research: Climate Change Causes Migration and Conflict

Out of Options If worldwide famine and mass extinction weren’t reasons enough to act on global climate change, a couple new reasons to save the planet just popped up. In ecology, animals faced with a critical change or the destruction of their habitat have three options: adapt, migrate, or starve. Now, as climate change has […]

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Boeing’s Flying Car Just Completed Its First Test Flight

Passenger Air Vehicle On Tuesday, aerospace company Boeing completed the first ever test flight of its autonomous passenger air vehicle (PAV) — a flying car, basically — at a facility in Virginia. The prototype, which sports wings and a rear propeller, completed a takeoff and hovered to test its “autonomous functions and ground control systems,” according to an […]

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Sunlight on This Street Installation Casts Shadow Messages About Passage of Time

Indian street artist DAKU recently unveiled an immersive shadow art installation in Panjim, Goa. Titled Theory of Time, the incredible street-long piece features a net of suspended letters that create typographic shadows on the concrete floor, when sunlight shines down on it during the day. The letters spell out phrases related to the passage of […]

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Xiaomi Teases Flexible Smartphone That Folds Like a Birthday Card

Weird Flex It’s official: Chinese electronics giant Xiaomi has confirmed that it’s working on a flexible smartphone. In a short clip posted to Chinese social media site Weibo today, Xiaomoi co-founder Lin Bin showed off an engineering sample of a smartphone with an astonishing display. The clip shows Lin folding the screen backwards on both sides, […]