Big solar storm heading toward Earth
This is not your usual weather forecast. Big storms are brewing. Your umbrella won’t help, but you might want to keep a flashlight handy.
These storms are coming from the sun. It’s raining down a huge amount of radiation. We’re safe, but it could affect power grids, radios and satellites.
Experts say the combined energy from two recent solar events will arrive at Earth on Saturday, prompting the Space Weather Prediction Center to issue a strong geomagnetic storm watch.
Humans Could Be In The Middle Of A Huge Evolutionary Transition
Mankind is undergoing a major evolutionary transition comparable to the shifts from prosimians to monkeys, monkeys to apes, and apes to humans, according to Cadell Last, a doctoral student in evolutionary anthropology and researcher at the Global Brain Institute.
Human life expectancy has already increased from about 45 at the start of the 20th century to 80 today. Because of advancements in technology, which will affect natural selection, Last suggests life expectancy could increase to 120 as early as 2050 — a concept known as radical life extension.
In addition to longer lives, humans will likely delay the timing of biological reproduction and reduce the number of offspring too, according to Last. Taken together, these changes could signify a new type of human, more focused on culture than biology.
Last makes his case in a paper from the most recent issue of Current Aging Science. Citing other futurists like Ray Kurzweil and Francis Heylighen, Last theorizes about human interaction with technology, relying on observations of past primate evolution and biology.
Eh. We’ll see how this turns out. Could be just as terrible as Lucy (2014).
When machines outsmart humans
Machines have surpassed humans in physical strength, speed and stamina. What would happen if machines surpassed human intellect as well? The question is not just hypothetical; we need to start taking this possibility seriously.
Lack of sleep may shrink your brain
European researchers looked at 147 adults between the ages of 20 and 84. With two MRI scans, they examined the link between sleep problems like insomnia and the study participants’ brain volume. The first scan was taken before patients completed a questionnaire pertaining to their sleep habits. The second scan was done approximately 3½ years later.
The questionnaire showed that 35% of those in the study met the criteria for poor sleep health. Investigators found that those with sleep problems had a more rapid decline in brain volume or size over the course of the study than those who slept well.
Numerous studies have showed the importance of sleep and the effect sleep deprivation can have on our brains. It is well-known that poor sleep patterns can contribute to such brain disorders as Alzheimer’s and dementia.
Newly found asteroid to pass close to Earth on Sunday
A newly discovered asteroid will pass “very close” to Earth on Sunday, NASA says.
The space rock is estimated to be 60 feet (18 meters) long. It’s expected to fly over New Zealand about 2:18 p.m. EDT (11:18 a.m. PDT / 18:18 UTC.)
It won’t hit Earth or any of the thousands of satellites orbiting the planet, NASA says. It will give astronomers and scientists a chance to study it.
The asteroid won’t be visible the naked eye, but amateur astronomers should be able to see it with telescopes.
New Time Travel Simulation May Resolve ‘Grandfather Paradox’
On June 28, 2009, the world-famous physicist Stephen Hawking threw a party at the University of Cambridge, complete with balloons, hors d’oeuvres and iced champagne. Everyone was invited but no one showed up. Hawking had expected as much, because he only sent out invitations after his party had concluded. It was, he said, “a welcome reception for future time travelers,” a tongue-in-cheek experiment to reinforce his 1992 conjecture that travel into the past is effectively impossible.
But Hawking may be on the wrong side of history. Recent experiments offer tentative support for time travel’s feasibility—at least from a mathematical perspective. The study cuts to the core of our understanding of the universe, and the resolution of the possibility of time travel, far from being a topic worthy only of science fiction, would have profound implications for fundamental physics as well as for practical applications such as quantum cryptography and computing.