Science & Technology

The Two-Way
4:32 pm
Mon January 27, 2014

U.S. Agencies, Tech Firms Agree To Rules On Surveillance Info

Originally published on Mon January 27, 2014 5:53 pm

Internet companies that receive U.S. government requests for information about their customers will be able to disclose more details about surveillance than has been allowed, according to a deal announced today by the Justice Department.

The shift will allow technology and communications companies "to publish the aggregate data ... relating to any orders issued pursuant to the Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Act (FISA)" — and in more ways than had been previously allowed.

Read more
All Tech Considered
4:01 pm
Mon January 27, 2014

You've Got Mail, And It Smells Like 18th Century Paris

The oPhone was on display at Wired's annual conference in London in October.
Courtesy of Le Laboratoire

Originally published on Wed January 29, 2014 12:17 pm

First there was the Smell-O-Vision, a technology that brought aromas to movie theater audiences. Then there was Scratch 'n' Sniff, paper you could smell.

Now, a company in Paris has developed a mobile phone that sends aromatic text messages. It's called the oPhone — "o" for olfactory.

Read more
All Tech Considered
4:01 pm
Mon January 27, 2014

For Taiwanese News Animators, Funny Videos Are Serious Work

In their effort to make their animations seem more realistic, the Next Media team models various facial expressions it will use in a piece. These are models of singer Leslie Cheung.
Elise Hu NPR

Originally published on Wed January 29, 2014 12:17 pm

Read more
Shots - Health News
2:00 pm
Mon January 27, 2014

Stricter Autism Criteria Unlikely To Reduce Services For Kids

Clinical specialist Catey Funaiock took notes while observing a 5-year-old boy at the Marcus Autism Center, part of Children's Healthcare of Atlanta, in September.
David Goldman AP

Originally published on Tue January 28, 2014 12:55 pm

The clinical definition for when a child has some form of autism has been tightened. And these narrower criteria for autism spectrum disorder probably will reduce the number of kids who meet the new standard.

But researchers say the changes, which were rolled out last May, are likely to have a bigger effect on government statistics than on the care of the nation's children.

Read more
Shots - Health News
12:52 pm
Mon January 27, 2014

You'd Think We'd Have Baby-Making All Figured Out, But No

Originally published on Tue January 28, 2014 6:41 am

"Oh, just put a pillow underneath your hips during sex, then you'll definitely get pregnant," a good friend told me. "That did the trick for us — twice."

Now, the friend is a smart woman. She has a Ph.D. in biology, for Pete's sake. So she must know what she's talking about when it comes to conception, right?

Read more
The Two-Way
12:48 pm
Mon January 27, 2014

NYT: NSA Can Exploit Mobile Apps For Information

Originally published on Mon January 27, 2014 3:53 pm

The National Security Agency, along with its British counterpart, the GCHQ, can exploit sometimes very personal data that leaks from popular phone apps.

That's according to The New York Times, which is basing its reporting on secret British documents obtained by former NSA contractor Edward Snowden.

Read more
The Two-Way
11:34 am
Mon January 27, 2014

CEO Of A Bitcoin Exchange Charged With Money Laundering

Charlie Shrem, CEO of the BitInstant bitcoin exchange, and another man have been charged with allegedly laundering money for individuals who illegally bought drugs online.

Read more
The Salt
11:07 am
Mon January 27, 2014

Soil, Weedkillers And GMOs: When Numbers Don't Tell The Whole Story

Farm statistics: usually illuminating ... occasionally misleading.
Seth Perlman AP

Originally published on Mon January 27, 2014 3:12 pm

I love numbers. A picture may be worth a thousand words, but I think a good bar graph can be worth a thousand pictures.

But three times in the past few days, I've come across statistics in reputable-looking publications that made me stop and say, "Huh?"

I did some investigating so you don't have to. And indeed, the numbers don't quite tell the story that they purport to tell.

So here goes: My skeptical inquiry into statistics on herbicide use, soil erosion, and the production of fruits and nuts.

Read more
All Tech Considered
2:34 am
Mon January 27, 2014

As PC Sales Drop, Intel Delays A Plant Opening And Cuts Jobs

With new construction in the background, President Obama spoke about manufacturing and jobs during a visit to Intel's Ocotillo facility, Jan. 25, 2012, in Chandler, Ariz.
Ross D. Franklin AP

Originally published on Mon January 27, 2014 11:57 am

As far as factories go, this one was about as ballyhooed as they come. In 2012, President Obama visited Intel's Ocotillo campus in suburban Phoenix, the day after his State of the Union address.

Read more
Science
2:33 am
Mon January 27, 2014

Grand Canyon May Be Older (And Younger) Than You Think

The eastern Grand Canyon was about half-carved (to the level of the red cliffs above the hiker) from 15 million to 25 million years ago, an analysis published Sunday suggests. But the inner gorge was likely scooped out by the Colorado River in just the past 6 million years.
Laura Crossey University of New Mexico

Originally published on Mon January 27, 2014 10:31 am

In recent years geologists have hotly debated the age of the Grand Canyon. Some think it's young (just 6 million years old), while others argue that it dates back 70 million years — to the days of dinosaurs.

Now one group says the Grand Canyon is neither young nor old. Instead, these geologists say, it's both.

Read more

Pages