Nobody Cares! (Science & Tech Edition)

Isabeau

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In the case of Napoleon, his behavior is a test of the other monkeys’ comfort with his aggressiveness, and of those monkeys’ willingness to put their vulnerable fingers in Napoleon’s mouth to retrieve their hair. Perry says Napoleon has a “particularly creative way of bond testing.” This can be off-putting for many monkeys, and Napoleon has a relatively low social status, Perry says.
 

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This is pretty cool news.

The first people to reach North America didn’t wait around for the giant ice shelves to melt, reaching the continent at the peak of the last ice age, according to two related studies published today in Nature.

The newly revised time frame, as evidenced by stone tools and flakes found at Chiquihuite Cave in northern Mexico, suggests humans first ventured into North America between 31,000 and 33,000 years ago, instead of the more generally agreed upon window of 15,000 to 20,000 years ago. That’s a significant update to our thinking and a definite rewrite-the-textbooks kind of discovery.
 

danielravennest

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This is pretty cool news.

I saw that story today. One theory about the lack of other evidence is the first arrivals came along a coastal route, at a time when sea level was 120 meters (400 feet) lower than today. Early people wouldn't have built anything massive, so all the evidence was long since washed away by the ocean rising. Caves like the one in Mexico are much better at preserving evidence.
 

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Cross-border effort to save giant 'scrotum frog.

Five scientific institutions are joining forces in a cross-border effort to preserve the Lake Titicaca giant frog (Telmatobius culeus).
The frog is one of the world's largest exclusively aquatic frogs and lives in the waters of Lake Titicaca, which straddles the border between Peru and Bolivia.
The aim of the project is to ensure the future of the endangered frog.
Cross-border effort to save giant 'scrotum frog'
 

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When NASA’s latest Mars rover, Perseverance, launches this week, the robot will have a tiny stowaway on board: a small box-shaped helicopter. If the copter manages to successfully hover above the Martian terrain, it’ll be the first time that a human-made vehicle has ever flown on another world — and it could open up a whole new way of exploring the Solar System in the future.

The helicopter, named Ingenuity, is not the main focus of the rover. Perseverance’s biggest goal is to look for signs of life on Mars and dig up samples of dirt that could one day be returned to Earth for study. But engineers managed to find room under the rover’s belly to stow the tiny helicopter. At some point during Perseverance’s journey, the rover will deploy Ingenuity onto the surface of Mars, where it will spin up its rotor and attempt to take off.
 

Argent Stonecutter

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The first flight was the Skycrane used to land Curiosity 2012 years ago. It was a short flight though (1m into the video)
I'm pretty sure they're referring to the first aerodynamic flight. There was never any question whether rockets would work in the Martian atmosphere.
 
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danielravennest

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I'm pretty sure they're referring to the first aerodynamic flight. There was never any question whether rockets would work in the Martian atmosphere.
Heat shield and parachutes: are we jokes to you?

The people who keep track of aerospace records have many different categories, but rockets and aircraft are both considered "flights" if they go up and down. Aerodynamics is what happens when you move through an atmosphere. The heat shields and parachutes used to get a probe to Mars take advantage of it to slow down. For the Ingenuity vehicle, I think it would be classed as "First rotorcraft on Mars", but possibly in one of the ultralight or model categories, because it is drone-sized.
 

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I know what you mean and you know what I mean and you know that there's a huge difference between landing with parachutes and rockets and controlled powered aerodynamic flight from ground. It's why the first flight is credited at Kitty Hawk and not Berlin or Paris.
 

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I know what you mean and you know what I mean and you know that there's a huge difference between landing with parachutes and rockets and controlled powered aerodynamic flight from ground. It's why the first flight is credited at Kitty Hawk and not Berlin or Paris.
Though to be even more precise (and pedantic), the first controlled powered flight.
 

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Why does it have to look like candy that wants to be in my mouth right now though?
 
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Bartholomew Gallacher

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Finally: genetic engineers have figured out a way on how to manipulate the sex determining gene of cattle, so that bulls treated and born with that manipulated genome are producing more male offspring than normal.

The reason for that? More steaks, because male cattles are producing more beef using the same energy compared to female ones. So this could be also potentially good for the environment.


...and might as well become a hit in India and China, where many families favor male offspring, because the same genome is in the human DNA.
 
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The reuse of rockets and spacecraft always seemed like it would be part of SpaceX and NASA's extended plans for human spaceflights, but few anticipated it happening so quickly. NASA's original commercial crew contract with SpaceX called for the first six operational missions to each use new Dragons.

However, a contract modification signed in May allowed SpaceX to introduce reuse much more quickly. In exchange for extending the Demo-2 test flight—carrying NASA astronauts Doug Hurley and Bob Behnken—from two weeks to up to 119 days, SpaceX got permission to reuse spacecraft instead of building new ones. This extension allowed Behnken to participate in four spacewalks in recent weeks, swapping out battery packs on the exterior of the orbiting laboratory.
 
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So the Dragon capsule returned safely, exactly on target, and immediately got surrounded by pleasure boaters from Pensacola, FL. They had to be shooed away so the recovery boat could pull it out of the water. The capsule uses nitrogen tetroxide and monomethylhydrazine for its thrusters, which are "melt your lungs" level toxins. Although it didn't leak out, the re-entry is extremely hot, as you can see from the scorch marks, and could have damaged the tanks and plumbing.