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Wednesday, February 11, 2015

The Creepy Collective Behavior of Boston Dynamics’ New Robot Dog

The Creepy Collective Behavior of Boston Dynamics’ New Robot Dog

Robotics company Boston Dynamics has a new four-legged addition to its family: a 160-lb quadruped named Spot—and dude is impressive. In a short video posted yesterday, the Google-owned company shows Spot gallivanting with a weird equestrian hop through office corridors, up concrete stairs, and along rocky hills with little trouble. Spot even keeps his balance after being kicked by one of its human overlords. You can almost hear the canine whimper over the drone of his hydraulics.


The post The Creepy Collective Behavior of Boston Dynamics’ New Robot Dog appeared first on WIRED.




















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The A-Team That Tracks the Poisonous Additives in Our Food

The A-Team That Tracks the Poisonous Additives in Our Food

Some groceries are not what they seem. Just ask Mitchell Weinberg. As head of a firm called Inscatech, he specializes in the dirty details of adulterating edibles—shortcuts and substitutions that can lead to disaster. Business is booming: Reports of tainted food climbed 60 percent between 2010 and 2013, according to the nonprofit US Pharmacopeial Convention. […]


The post The A-Team That Tracks the Poisonous Additives in Our Food appeared first on WIRED.




















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Astronomers Discover New Planet That Really Makes Earth Look Like Shit

WASHINGTON—Calling it an unprecedented finding that fundamentally reshapes how humankind views its place in the universe, astronomers from NASA announced Wednesday the discovery of a planet that makes Earth look like absolute shit. The space agency...

















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What Would We Do Without Them





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Making a Flexible PCB with Pyralux #WearableWednesday

Pat Starace writes: Success! A Flexible Printed Circuit Board. These boards are not easy to make, so I thought, and with a little work you can make a nifty Flexible PCB. I used Adafruit’s Pyralux Flexible PCB Material. I first tried to CNC it on my engraver. As awesome as my engraver is (similar to […]



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Is 'sitting the new cancer'? What Apple CEO Tim Cook really meant

Apple Watch comments may be seen as distasteful in some quarters, but the dangers of sedentary lifestyles are more than a marketing line


Sitting is the new cancer? As marketing soundbites for a new gadget go, it’s one of the strangest in recent memory.


Yet that’s the phrase used by Apple chief executive Tim Cook – admittedly with a neatly-distancing “a lot of doctors think” preface – when banging the drum for his company’s upcoming smartwatch.


Related: Is sitting down bad for my health?


Related: Time will tell: only 1% of Britons own a smartwatch


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The mystery of Mingering Mike: the soul legend who never existed

When a ‘crate-digger’ found a massive vinyl collection at a flea market, he couldn’t understand how a soul star who’d released 148 albums could just disappear. But the truth turned out to be even stranger. Jon Ronson goes in search of Mingering Mike


This story begins with a record collector unearthing something extraordinary at a flea market one dawn in 2003. His name is Dori Hader. He worked as a criminal investigator for a law firm in Washington DC and he’d been up all night with a client at the jail next door.


“It’s a miserable place to be, the DC jail,” Hader tells me. “It’s stuffy and muggy and everything’s old and decaying.”


A man is walking toward me – tall, mid-60s. 'Mingering Mike?' I say. He nods. As we say hello he’s avoiding eye contact.


“Cause when I get to war I might die/

Kiss your friends and family goodbye/

They want to keep me here strong and alive (me too).”


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Spain considers suing HSBC over 'fiscal fraud and laundering'

Spanish finance minister says lawyers studying possible legal action against HSBC for its role in residents’ ‘fiscal fraud, laundering and other wrongful acts’


The Spanish government is considering legal action against HSBC after it emerged that its private bank in Switzerland helped its clients dodge tax authorities around the world. The HSBC files show 2,694 Spaniards held accounts in the bank’s Swiss subsidiary, with savings totalling $2.3bn (£1.5bn).


On Tuesday Spain’s finance minister, Cristóbal Montoro, said he had asked the government’s legal counsel to carry out a “study of the legal actions that can be taken against HSBC for its participation in carrying out fiscal fraud, laundering and other wrongful acts committed by Spanish residents”.


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The police need to be reminded of their place in a free society

From monitoring sales of Charlie Hebdo to using facial recognition technology on innocent people, Britain’s police are showing a lack of respect for our freedoms

One of the few MPs who stand up for freedom in Britain, the Conservative David Davis, suggested that although the police attempt to monitor sales of the special issue of Charlie Hebdo was disquieting, it was more stupid than sinister. On this occasion I find it hard to agree with him. It is clear from a number of recent developments that the police have lost an understanding of what it means to live in a free society, and indeed how the police fit into that society and guard its freedoms.


The publication of the special survivors’ issue of Charlie Hebdo was an act that defied the murderous attack on free speech in Paris last month, and it is a grim irony that police officers in three areas of the country, using the vague pretext of heightened tensions between communities, saw this as an excuse to try to collect names of legitimate readers.


Related: Police from several UK forces seek details of Charlie Hebdo readers


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Obama Asks Congress for Permission to Keep Fighting ISIS

President Obama asked Congress Wednesday for authorization to continue fighting Islamic militants in Iraq and Syria, though lawmakers are already raising questions about the details of the plan. In his request, Obama says ISIS is responsible for the death of four Americans and poses “a grave threat” to Middle East stability and to the national…



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The Lesbian Jewish Leftist Conspiracy Tearing Reddit Apart, Untangled

A specter is haunting Reddit: The specter of SJWs.


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Biology Inspires Idea for Improving Lithium Ion Batteries

Borrowing the method organisms use to build mineralized tissues could lead to better performing lithium ion batteries



-- Read more on ScientificAmerican.com





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Happy Birthday Edison





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That's Key





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Opinion: Did Germany Fulfill their Promises? Did Austerity in Greece Deliver?





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Revised Clean Power Plan Could Win Coal Utility's Backing

An electric utility reliant on coal offers support for new greenhouse gas rules in exchange for changes to the plan



-- Read more on ScientificAmerican.com





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American Voices: Qdoba Offering Free-Burrito-For-A-Kiss Promotion On Valentine’s Day

Qdoba Mexican Grill is offering a Valentine’s Day promotion called Smothered in Smooch, in which customers who order a sauce-smothered burrito can kiss someone and get a second burrito for free.

















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