The seas are rising at a faster rate right now than at any point since at least the era of Julius Caesar, and there is a direct link between this increase and changes in global surface temperatures, according to a new study. Rising sea levels could have major impacts on not just marine ecosystems, but the entire planet, as coastal areas are swamped by encroaching waters.
Good news for bats in Europe, if not the US: A species of bat thought to have disappeared from a British island chain 40 years ago has actually been hanging out all along, doing just fine despite habitat loss. Biologists found a pregnant female roosting in a pine tree, and say they might be able to improve the bats' living situation.
A Japanese supercomputer is now the world’s fastest, unseating the previous record-holder by nearly a factor of four. The K Computer, based at the RIKEN Advanced Institute for Computational Science (AICS) in Kobe, can perform 8 petaflops — that’s 8 quadrillion calculations per second.
A new brain implant tested on rats restored lost memories at the flick of a switch, heralding a possible treatment method for patients with Alzheimer’s disease, stroke or amnesia. Such a “neural prosthesis” could someday be used to facilitate the memory-forming process and help patients remember.
Determined to keep physical currency relevant in an age of bitcoins and NFC-equipped phones, the Dutch are turning their coins into little high-tech toys. These are purportedly the world's first coins with QR codes, which currently link to the national mint, but after June 22 will link to a "surprise."
Despite our best efforts, humans are still not as skilled at making life as life forms are themselves. So naturally, DARPA would like to take advantage of that skill. A new program called “Living Foundries” seeks to use biology as a manufacturing platform, enabling the creation of new materials that are impossible to make today.
Thousands of spam pseudobooks are reportedly clogging Amazon’s Kindle store, as spammers have begun buying digital content on the cheap and repackaging it into e-book form. Book buyers have to click through volumes of spam to find the real books they want, according to a report by Reuters.
The fake books are easy to produce and publish using Amazon’s intentionally author-friendly self-publishing framework. Some are selling for 99 cents in the Kindle store.
A wee particle accelerator in the English countryside could be a harbinger of a safer, cleaner future of energy. Specifically, nuclear energy, but not the type that has wrought havoc in Japan and controversy throughout Europe and the U.S. It would be based on thorium, a radioactive element that is much more abundant, and much more safe, than traditional sources of nuclear power.