A rover scanning the surface of Mars for evidence of life might want to check for rocks that look like pasta, researchers report in the journal Astrobiology.


The bacterium that controls the formation of such rocks on Earth is ancient and thrives in harsh environments that are similar to conditions on Mars, said University of Illinois geology professor Bruce Fouke, who led the new, NASA-funded study.



Sourced through Scoop.it from: news.illinois.edu

There are several components, but the real shocker is that more of us aren’t embracing the current age of access to mastery of any topic. But that may not be so surprising—most of us were taught to be passive learners, to just "get through" school. It’s easy to be lazy. The rewards of becoming an autodidact, though, include igniting inner fires, making new connections to knowledge and skills you already have, advancing in your career, meeting kindred spirits, and cultivating an overall zest for life and its riches.


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Elon Musk’s new project Neuralink has been making headlines recently, but very little is known about this mysterious company so far. So, what is Neuralink?


Back in 2015, Professor Pedram Mohseni and Rudolph J. Nudo created a startup called ‘NeuraLink’. These pair of neurotech researchers had developed a device that could potentially help people suffering from brain injuries. Investors didn’t show a great deal of interest, but in 2016 a mysterious unknown investor came along with an offer to purchase the rights to the name, Neuralink, for tens of thousands of dollars. They sold, and that investor later turned out to be multi-billionaire, Elon Musk.


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Distant water exoplanets might have oceans thousands of miles deep. That’s in contrast to Earth’s ocean, which is about 6.8 miles (about 11 km) deep at its deepest point.


Water worlds – planets or moons with global oceans – used to be considered part of science fiction, but we are starting to learn now that, not only do they exist, they might actually be fairly common.


In our own solar system, the moons Europa, Enceladus, Titan and Ganymede are known or suspected to have such oceans beneath their outer ice crust. Even Pluto is now thought to have one!

Sourced through Scoop.it from: earthsky.org

What if drones and self-driving cars had the tingling “spidey senses” of Spider-Man? They might actually detect and avoid objects better, says Andres Arrieta, an assistant professor of mechanical engineering at Purdue University, because they would process sensory information faster.


Better sensing capabilities would make it possible for drones to navigate in dangerous environments and for cars to prevent accidents caused by human error. Current state-of-the-art sensor technology doesn’t process data fast enough – but nature does.

And researchers wouldn’t have to create a radioactive spider to give autonomous machines superhero sensing abilities.


Sourced through Scoop.it from: www.purdue.edu

Elephants are among the most intelligent animals in the world. Previous studies have found that elephants are able to recognize individual faces and that they have a unique and sophisticated set of social norms which even includes mourning. Recently scientists have discovered that elephants have their own form of rudimentary language which seems primarily designed to warn other members of their herd about potential threats.


Researchers from a collaborative team comprising scientists from Oxford University, Save the Elephants and Disney’s Animal Kingdom have been studying the noises elephants make when exposed to certain threats. The researchers found that if elephants are exposed to the sound of a human voice, specifically speaking in the language of the Samburu tribe of northern Kenya, that elephants become vigilant and emit a distinctive noise that sounds like a low rumble. Other elephants, not exposed to the human voice, reacted to the elephant alarm by running away and making the exact same rumbling noise.

Sourced through Scoop.it from: www.disclose.tv