Science & Technology

All Tech Considered
11:14 am
Wed August 14, 2013

'The New York Times' Site, Apps Return After Two-Hour Outage

The New York Times headquarters in New York City.
Ramin Talaie Getty Images

Originally published on Fri August 16, 2013 7:40 am

One of the world's most trusted sources for news is back up, after an internal outage knocked it out for nearly two hours on Wednesday morning. The New York Times' main site and mobile app went down a little after 11 a.m. ET, when users who tried to visit received a "Service Unavailable" message.

The news organization's Twitter account sent this message, before the site returned:

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Krulwich Wonders...
10:13 am
Wed August 14, 2013

Is There A Giant Life Form Lurking In Our Solar System? Possibly, Say Scientists

Robert Krulwich NPR

Originally published on Wed August 14, 2013 10:29 am

What if — just maybe — we find extra-terrestrial life in the oceans of Europa, a little moon circling Jupiter? If we do, says writer Caspar Henderson, don't expect that oceanic alien to be very big. Or very scary. Or even very visible. Nothing like this ...

The "top predator" on Europa, Henderson reports, is likely to be "a fearsome creature with the mass of one gram." That's three one-hundredths of an ounce.

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All Tech Considered
9:55 am
Wed August 14, 2013

Man Learns How Not To Launch A Site For Women

Bryan Goldberg is founder and CEO of Bustle.com, a new site targeting female audiences.
Courtesy of Bryan Goldberg

Originally published on Wed August 14, 2013 2:02 pm

Bustle.com is a new women's site staffed by editors and writers from traditionally female-oriented organizations like Glamour and Seventeen but founded and led by a man, Bryan Goldberg. His previous venture was the multimillion-dollar sports site Bleacher Report. In announcing the launch of his new lady-targeted venture Tuesday, he wrote:

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All Tech Considered
8:27 am
Wed August 14, 2013

This Little Thing May Help You Find Your Keys

The Tile, accompanied by an iPhone app, locates items that are attached to it. It's about as small as a matchbook or a stamp.
Matt Perko Courtesy of Tile

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The Two-Way
6:45 am
Wed August 14, 2013

AOL CEO Apologizes For Public Firing

Tim Armstrong, the CEO of AOL.
Michael Kovac Getty Images for AOL

Originally published on Wed August 14, 2013 11:51 am

After several days of brutal criticism and commentary about the brutal way he fired a man during a conference call, AOL CEO Tim Armstrong is now apologizing.

"I am writing you to acknowledge the mistake I made last Friday during the Patch all-hands meeting when I publicly fired Abel Lenz," Armstrong says in an email to AOL employees, which Mashable has posted here.

Armstrong adds that:

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Energy
4:21 am
Wed August 14, 2013

Complex Networks Make Up U.S. Power Grid

Originally published on Wed August 14, 2013 8:16 am

Transcript

DAVID GREENE, HOST:

And whether it's worth paying to avoid all blackouts is a theme that has been on the mind of Steven Weissman, he's a professor of Electricity Law at the University of California, Berkeley. We reached him on this blackout anniversary to learn about how the nation's energy system is structured. Weissman says the grid is really made up of several complex networks.

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Energy
2:01 am
Wed August 14, 2013

10 Years After The Blackout, How Has The Power Grid Changed?

The sun sets over the Manhattan skyline during a major power outage affecting a large part of the Northeastern United States and Canada on Aug. 14, 2003. Ten years later, some improvements have been made to the grid to prevent another large-scale blackout.
Robert Giroux Getty Images

Originally published on Wed August 14, 2013 11:58 am

Ten years ago, a sagging power line hit a tree near Cleveland, tripping some circuit breakers. To compensate, power was rerouted to a nearby line, which began to overheat and sink down into another tree, tripping another circuit. The resulting cascade created a massive blackout in the Northeast U.S., affecting power in eight states and part of Canada.

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All Tech Considered
4:44 pm
Tue August 13, 2013

Hacking Real Things Becomes Child's Play At This Camp

Owen Chilcoat hacking his tablet. "I am just messing around ... trying to break it," he says.
Steve Henn NPR

Originally published on Wed August 14, 2013 7:56 am

At r00tz, a camp that takes place each year during the Def Con convention in Las Vegas, children learn to pick locks, hack smart TVs and, most important, how to take apart and understand the technology that surrounds them.

The scene inside the camp a couple weeks ago was a bit of a madhouse — controlled chaos. Little kids everywhere. Brendan Herman was trying to program a machine to draw pictures on ping-pong balls, wearing a tinfoil hat.

"To protect me from aliens," he said.

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All Tech Considered
2:28 pm
Tue August 13, 2013

Why The World Pays Attention When Elon Musk Proposes An Idea

Musk with the Tesla Model S in Fremont on Oct. 1, 2011.
Stephen Lam Reuters/Landov

Originally published on Tue August 13, 2013 2:46 pm

Derision: It's what would usually greet plans for a futuristic transportation system that could take passengers from Los Angeles to San Francisco in 30 minutes. But when Elon Musk, the billionaire inventor behind PayPal, Tesla and SpaceX, unveils such a plan, the world pays attention (even if it draws skeptics).

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The Salt
9:49 am
Tue August 13, 2013

Why Urban Beekeeping Can Be Bad For Bees

Beehive designer Johannes Paul (right) and Natural England's ecologist Peter Massini, with a brood frame colonized with bees from the "beehaus" beehive on the roof of his house in London in 2009.
Sang Tan AP

Originally published on Thu August 15, 2013 4:27 pm

Two British scientists are dumping cold water on campaigns to promote urban beekeeping. They say that trying to "help the bees" by setting out more hives is naive and misguided if the bees can't find enough flowers nearby to feed on. You'll just end up with sick and starving bees.

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