Science & Technology

U.S.
4:45 pm
Tue March 5, 2013

Dreamliner's Battery Woes A Deja Vu Moment For Aviation Industry

Originally published on Tue March 5, 2013 5:20 pm

Lithium-ion batteries sparked a crisis for Boeing's Dreamliner 787 — but the crisis is not an unprecedented one. Four decades ago, a very similar transition to new battery technology in airplanes yielded similar problems. Audie Cornish describes what happened then — and what lessons might be learned as lithium-ion batteries become the next generation that power planes.

Animals
4:45 pm
Tue March 5, 2013

'Extinction Looms' For Forest Elephants Due To Poaching

Originally published on Tue March 5, 2013 5:20 pm

Transcript

AUDIE CORNISH, HOST:

Now, to some alarming findings about wildlife in Africa. A 10-year survey looked at the population of forest elephants and found that it fell 62 percent in that time. The study is the largest of its kind, spanning five countries: Cameroon, Central African Republic, Democratic Republic of Congo, its neighbor the Republic of Congo and Gabon. The Wildlife Conservation Society, which helped organize the effort, is saying that extinction looms for the forest elephant because of poaching.

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The Two-Way
11:32 am
Tue March 5, 2013

VW Introduces 'World's Most Efficient' Car At Geneva Motor Show

Two new Volkswagen hybrid XL1 model cars are displayed during a preview of Volkswagen ahead of the Geneva Car Show in Geneva.
Fabrice Coffrini AFP/Getty Images

At the Geneva Motor Show on Tuesday, Volkswagen introduced a futuristic-looking car that the company says is the "world's most efficient."

VW's XL1 is a two seater, plug-in, diesel hybrid that the company says gets 261 miles per gallon "with an all-electric driving range of a little over 30 miles," CNN reports.

CNN adds:

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The Two-Way
10:40 am
Tue March 5, 2013

Study Finds Climate Change To Open Arctic Sea Routes By 2050

An iceberg in or just outside the Ilulissat fjord, which likely calved from Jakobshavn Isbrae, the fastest glacier in western Greenland, in May 2012. Polar ice sheets are now melting three times faster than in the 1990s.
Ian Joughin AP

Originally published on Tue March 5, 2013 12:22 pm

Climate change will make commercial shipping possible from North America to Russia or Asia over the North Pole by the middle of the century, a new study says.

Two researchers at the University of California ran seven different climate models simulating two classes of vessels to see if they could make a relatively ice-free passage through the Arctic Ocean. In each case, the sea routes are sufficiently clear after 2049, they say.

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Joe's Big Idea
2:39 am
Tue March 5, 2013

Wanna Play? Computer Gamers Help Push Frontier Of Brain Research

This image represents a chunk, or "cube," of brain. Each different color represents a different neuron, and the goal of the EyeWire game is to figure out how these tangled neurons connect to each other. Players look at a slice from this cube and try to identify the boundaries of each cell. It isn't easy, and it takes practice. You can try it for yourself at eyewire.org.
EyeWire

Originally published on Tue March 5, 2013 2:39 pm

People can get pretty addicted to computer games. By some estimates, residents of planet Earth spend 3 billion hours per week playing them. Now some scientists are hoping to make use of all that human capital and harness it for a good cause.

Right now I'm at the novice level of a game called EyeWire, trying to color in a nerve cell in a cartoon drawing of a slice of tissue. EyeWire is designed to solve a real science problem — it aims to chart the billions of nerve connections in the brain.

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Shots - Health News
4:15 pm
Mon March 4, 2013

Got A Health Care Puzzle? There Should Be An App!

The GetHealth app was a runner-up at the recent Hackovate Health Innovation Competition held in Kansas City, Mo.
Courtesy of GetHealth Limited

Originally published on Mon March 4, 2013 4:41 pm

Kansas City, Mo., is looking to boost its health-tech cred.

So the city that's home to Cerner Corp. and other health information firms seemed a natural to host something called the Hackovate Health Innovation Competition.

A mashup of innovation and old-school hacking (though none of the participants was bent on doing harm, we're assured), the goal of the competition was to improve the nation's health system and help people navigate the complexities of the Affordable Care Act.

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Medical Treatments
3:43 pm
Mon March 4, 2013

Mississippi Toddler Could Be First Child Cured Of HIV

Originally published on Mon March 4, 2013 4:34 pm

A child born with HIV has been cured of the virus, researchers say. Audie Cornish talks to Richard Knox about what was different about this child among the millions who've been treated in the past and what it means for the prospect of an HIV cure in adults.

Animals
3:43 pm
Mon March 4, 2013

Kentucky City Fights Migratory Bird Invasion With Air Cannons, Lasers

Originally published on Mon March 4, 2013 4:34 pm

Audie Cornish talks with Geoff LaBaron, an ornithologist with National Audubon Society, about a strange blackbird invasion in the town of Hopkinsville, Ky.

All Tech Considered
3:43 pm
Mon March 4, 2013

Street Lights, Security Systems And Sewers? They're Hackable, Too

An analyst works at a federal cybersecurity center in Idaho in 2011. Experts say Internet-connected infrastructure is a possible target of cyberwarfare.
Mark J. Terrill AP

Originally published on Mon March 4, 2013 5:05 pm

Allegations that the Chinese military has been hacking U.S. corporations are raising tensions. But in the case of a full-fledged cyberwar, things would look very different.

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Digital Life
3:43 pm
Mon March 4, 2013

'Productivity' Apps Motivate With A Dose Of Punishment

Originally published on Mon March 4, 2013 4:34 pm

Thorin Klosowski, of the blog Lifehacker, tells Audie Cornish about some smartphone apps that motivate you to get out of bed or go to the gym with a special dose of punishment.

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