Cool Stories Tech News

Picasso, Reconstructed by an A.I.

It’s rare for artists to spring up surprises long after their demise, but some occasions are noteworthy. Think Van Gogh, Rembrandt, Leonardo da Vinci, and Picasso.

Beneath the Old Guitarist (1903-04), Pablo Picasso’s popular Blue Period painting is the figure of a woman in faint markings. She was originally noticed in 1998 when X-rays and infrared light were used by conservators of the Art Institute of Chicago to peep behind the top layer of the paint.

She sits with her right arm tucked onto her lap and her left arm reaching toward the viewer.  Strangely enough, she resembles a sketch Picasso sent to a colleague at the same time the painting was made.

Enter A.I. Conservation

The foundation for the neural network was a technique created in 2015 by Leon Gatys at the University of Tübingen, Germany, called neural style transfer. The machine vision technique can indicate the style of a painting and convert it to match another.

For example, it can convert a Paul Cézanne to the style of Michelangelo. This technique has been used on videos as well, so it is possible to watch clips of Ice Age in the style of Van Gogh’s Starry Night.

All that could be recognized of the woman in the painting until now was the slightest trace of her outline. Other intricate details like style and color were lost.

Nevertheless, with the use of a neural network trained to differentiate the style of one artist from the other or one period from the other, researchers at University College London have given her a new life, even if it is not true to the original of Picasso.

Researchers George Cann and Anthony Bourached published their paper titled “Raiders of the Lost Art,” on the arXiv preprint server. The paper was also featured in a recent article in the MIT Technology Review.

The X-rayed images of the woman’s outlines were plugged into a neural network built to convert images into the style of La Vie (1903), another exceptional piece of Picasso’s Blue Period. In as much as the result cannot be a perfect match of Picasso’s painting which was also pained over 10 decades ago, it is at least conforming to the style he used at that period.

In Picasso’s The Crouching Beggar, the same technique was also used. It was painted over a landscape thought to have been made by a Spanish painter, Santiago Rusiñol, using Rusiñol’s Parc del Laberint d’Horta.

Cann and Bourached said that they hope the results help projects on other lost works of art and also challenge the popular doubt that “algorithm can be creative, or innovate.”

“We argue that the use of machine learning as an artistic tool can ultimately broaden creative insight and widen the landscape of inspirational ingenuity by human-AI collaboration,” wrote Cann and Bourached.

The Crouching Beggar and Old Guitarist are not the only Picasso works that cover hidden paintings. Earlier pieces are usually painted over by artists, especially when a fresh canvas is hard to come by due to inadequate funds. A portrait of a man resting his hand on his head underneath Picasso’s The Blue Room (1901) was found by researchers in 2014.

It’s rare for artists to spring up surprises long after their demise, but some occasions are noteworthy. Think Van Gogh, Rembrandt, Leonardo...

Earth Humans Are Awesome Inspiring Stories

Swedish Teen Sailed Across The Atlantic to Defend Mother Earth

Sailing across the Atlantic Ocean in her carbon-free yacht, 16-year-old Greta Thunberg has already received recognition for her stance on protecting our planet from climate change.

Greta Thunberg

She sailed from England to New York to join a climate-change conference which took her 13 days to complete. She chose a solar-powered, carbon-free yacht to avoid potential damage from carbon-emissions that have already damaged our planet through air travel.

Her 13-day voyage has drawn the attention of skeptics and supporters alike. She strongly feels it’s her duty to be an activist to guarantee that our planet will be taken care of.

Even though she is only 16, Greta knows it’s critical that people understand how their actions are harming Earth. Nothing can stop her from finding new ways to take care of our planet while encouraging others to realize how they are impacting our environment and climate.

Even though she is not a scientist, she believes her vessel is a scientific testimonial to raise awareness about the long-term issues that are affecting the Earth.

Thunberg’s passion for climate-change is nothing new. When she was 15, she organized an environmentally-friendly strike outside the Swedish Parliament building during school hours to encourage others to take action to save the planet.

Although most adults did not condone her actions, she held firmly to her convictions for three solid weeks! She handed out information and encouragement to others who passed by her. Eventually, her strike was published online and her efforts touched many people across the world.

Her plea for help went absolutely viral. Since then, her face has become the symbol of advocacy surrounding climate change.

Science in Action:

Her actions have caught the attention of people across the world. She has decided to throw herself into her cause as a full-time activist. She has taken time off from school to make activism her life’s goal. She has attended universities, conferences, events about climate-change, scientific events, and various political assemblies to spread the word.

Greta Thunberg UN

To travel from one event to another, she has chosen to use transportation that reduces CO2 emissions including by train even though it takes longer to get to her destination.

Greta has made many sacrifices to get the word out about the impending doom facing us in the future if climate change is not taken seriously. She said that we live in a strange world where children are literally sacrificing their own education to protect the planet against ruination.

Her outspoken attitude has drawn criticism from many, mostly due to her age, who do not believe the planet is in harm’s way. Meanwhile, others have come to her defense claiming that those who are against her are just ignorant.

Thunberg has remained focused and motivated to keep her climate change actions before the entire world. She planned on attending the climate-change conference held in the United States on September 2019. She decided to sail across the Atlantic Ocean from Britain to New York in her yacht that left no carbon footprints.

Greta’s Latest Missions:

On August 14, 2019, Greta sailed from Plymouth on the first-of-its-kind carbon-free yacht named Malizia 2. She sailed with her father who is an experienced sailor along with two other people. The 6-foot solar-powered yacht has technology on board that measures carbon emissions.

During the trip, she was able to observe how beautiful the ocean is with its many inhabitants including dolphins. As she traveled, she came to realize the importance of a pollutant-free ocean.

Although her journey was admired, many people who are in denial of climate change took to Twitter to leave negative comments about the young activist. One Twitter user, Julia Hartley-Brewer, left a message “Hi Greta, I’ve just booked some flights for my family to enjoy the winter sun on a beach over Christmas. Level Of Guilt – Zero!”

While there were negative remarks left behind, there were many others who came to her defense. Paraphrasing author Philip Pullman who said that most people have never done nor ever will one-hundredth as valuable and important as what Greta has accomplished.

Many others stressed their concerns about people who have nothing better to say about this young women’s passion to address climate change.

There is no doubt that planes do take their toll on the environment causing those who are conscientious to choose alternative forms of transportation. Her supporters definitely outweigh her critics. She said that even though there are people who will remain in denial and not accept what’s going on, she will remain focused on the crisis of climate change and do what she has to do.

There will probably be a line drawn in the sand, separating believers and non-believers regarding climate change. Each individual will have to make their own decision about the health and well-being of our planet. In the meantime, there are countless wild animals being slaughtered for game or to sell their ivory or fur.

These animals are becoming extinct and, believe it or not, they play an important role in the protection of our climate. I wonder if anyone thinks about them?

Sailing across the Atlantic Ocean in her carbon-free yacht, 16-year-old Greta Thunberg has already received recognition for her stance on protecting...

Cool Stories Tech News

Robotic Contact Lenses Allow You to Zoom In on Blink-Command

Everything robotic is on the rise!  As of late, researchers at the University of California San Diego have explored the idea of contact lenses that will zoom in on objects by blinking twice!  They are called “soft robots” which actually copies elements found in living organisms. They can be integrated with a human body and this is one of the projects that is taking center stage.

The researchers have actually created a prototype contact lens that’s controlled by the movement of your eye.  You can simply blink twice to zoom in and out from an object.  These biomimetic lenses are made from elastic polymer films designed to respond to the electric signals that are generated by eye movement.

The layers that expand or contract will change the thickness of the lenses which changes the amount of light that passes through. Actually, this technology is not new, it’s very much like eye-tracking technology that allows people to control their wheelchairs.

Soft Robots

Due to many unique features, soft robots have been extensively explored to work in collaboration with humans.  The latest development of soft robots can be either controlled manually or through a pre-written program.

The researchers explained that current developments have created a human/machine interface that uses electrooculographic signals that are generated by the movement of the eye to control motions and change the focal length of a biomimetic soft lens.

The motion and contortion of soft lenses are achieved by actuating areas of the dielectric polymer films which copies the mechanism of the eyes in people as well as in most mammals. In a recent study, the system has the potential to be used in visual prostheses, adjustable glasses, and remotely operated robotic in the near future.

This is really an amazing breakthrough that could allow your eye to see things more clearly and even zoom in on very small objects that the human eye has difficulty seeing. From there, the sky’s the limit.

Everything robotic is on the rise!  As of late, researchers at the University of California San Diego have explored the idea of contact lenses that...

Category - Nature & Tech

City Life Tech News

Daimler & Bosch Driverless Parking Has Gotten a Thumbs Up

Without a doubt, we have come a very long way getting Artificial Intelligence-based self-driving systems.

As of date, Daimler & Bosch have received approval from the German regulators to operate their automated driverless parking facility without involving a human safety driver sitting behind the wheel.

This is the world’s first fully automated driverless SAE Level 4 parking function to be totally approved for everyday use.  The thumbs-up comes 4 years after the companies started working together on the technology end.

Bosch board member, Dr. Markus Heyn said this decision by authorities only shows that innovations like automated valet parking is now possible in Germany.

He believes that driverless parking and driving are the cornerstones for tomorrow’s automated mobility.  Automated parking shows just how far we have already come and the continued development path that lies ahead.

Look Ma No Hands!

Level 4 was designated by SAE which means the vehicle can handle all aspects of driving in certain conditions without human interference.

Until now, there have been several Level 4 tests and trials in the works but they all involved people behind the wheel of the vehicle as a backup.

Bosch is considered one of the largest automotive tech and hardware suppliers in the world and they handle the infrastructure aspect of the automated parking function.

It works in collaboration with Daimler’s vehicle technology on its Mercedes-Benz vehicles.  Users can easily access the independent valet service using their smartphone app.

Bosch and Daimler started developing their fully automated driverless parking back in 2015. Their initial partnership including car2go, the which is the car-sharing unit of Daimler.

They debuted their automated valet parking function back in 2017 at the parking garage of the Mercedes-Benz Museum.

Then in 2018, after intensive testing, museum visitors ere able to test the automated parking service with one very important warning, a human safety driver must always be behind the wheel.

Using their smartphone app, visitors could reserve vehicles from the facility.  Their vehicle would arrive independently to the designated pick up place in the garage.

When the visitor is finished with the vehicle, they could deliver it to the drop off area.  The vehicle would then drive itself back to its assigned spot, guided by the garage’s infrastructure and onboard sensors.

The pilot program was limited in scope and restricted by a safety driver, but it served a valuable purpose for Bosch and Daimler and even other companies hoping to use automated driving in Germany.

That said, Germany does not have an approval process for automated driving without a human driver.

From the beginning, Bosch and Daimler brought in authorities from Stuttgart and the state of  Baden-Württemberg’s transportation ministry as well as experts from the German certification authority TUV Rheinland.

You would think the group would assess the safety of Bosch & Daimler’s parking function but it also helped regulators come up with guidelines for testing and the approval benchmark that could be applied beyond the pilot project in a parking garage in Stuttgart.

Bosch & Daimler tested lighting ideas on the vehicle’s pilot project.  They used turquoise lighting to indicate that the vehicle was in automation mode and informed others passing by along with other road users, that the vehicle was driving itself.

This is not the only Bosch & Daimler project that is in the works.  In 2017, they partnered to bring fully automated vehicles to urban roads within the next 10 years.  Last year, they announced plans to have a pilot robotaxi service in San Jose, Calif.

They are planning on using automated Mercedes-Benz S Class vehicles during the second half of 2019. There will be a geofenced area in the San Carlos and Stevens Creek corridor which is between downtown and west San Jose.

The pilot will have an on-demand ride-hailing service app operated by Daimler Mobility Services.  All rides will be monitored by a safety driver.

Presently, Bosch is building a $1.1 billion facility designed to assemble semiconductors used in self-driving cars, smart homes, and smart city infrastructure.

The Dresden-based chip is expected to start manufacturing silicon, commercially, in 2021 and construction is expected to be finished in 2019.

Without a doubt, we have come a very long way getting Artificial Intelligence-based self-driving systems.

As of date, Daimler & Bosch have received approval from the German regulators to operate their automated driverless parking facility without...

Tech News Vacation

The TSA is Working to Keep Your Laptop in Your Bag

The TSA is finally testing a screening method that will allow passengers, even those without a TSA PreCheck, to keep their laptops in their bags during the process. This new screening method is being tested in Las Vegas, and if it works, it will expand throughout the nation.

This month the TSA announced the opening of a new facility on the lower level of Terminal 3 at McCarran International Airport in Las Vegas. The new method being tested is under the Advancing the Checkpoint Environment program, or ACE, for short.

The Innovation Task Force

The director of the Innovation Task Force, Jose Bonilla, stated that this new facility will allow them to assess the new technology and processes being considered.

It will also make it easy for them to make a demonstration of the unique network of capabilities without having an effect on current operations.

The usual TSA checkpoints at Terminal 3 are found in the upper level of the building, while the ACE facility can be found downstairs. For the moment, only domestic passengers flying United Airlines will be able to go through ACE lanes.

However, this will soon be expanded to other domestic and international airlines. The ACE checkpoint is open for 4 hours every day, from Sunday to Thursday.

Passengers that go through the ACE lanes can leave their laptops in their bags even if they don’t have a PreCheck and they will be able to bypass traditional checkpoints. This process also provides faster security screening because fewer passengers are processed on these lanes.

The main ACE trials involve advanced imaging machines that make use of CT tech to look into the carry-on bags of passengers.

The images are more detailed than the traditional images produced by X-ray scans, which is why it will no longer be necessary for passengers to get their things out of their bags.

Similar machines are also being tested on other airports in the country, such as JKF Terminal 7. As ACE continues being used, newer technologies and procedures will be introduced to guarantee its evolution.

In fact, one of the main objectives of the ACE facility is to allow the testing of different types of tech and processes in conjunction with each other.

Passengers going through the ACE lanes will still have to remove liquids from their bags as well as their shoes, but it may not always be the case. The procedure will evolve alongside the technology, so many more upgrades to the screening process will follow.

The feedback from passengers who have used the ACE lanes and from the agents who manage them is important to evaluate these new processes and technologies, which will help the TSA roll out these new procedures and machines more broadly.

So far, the feedback is great on the introduced innovations, so we expect to hear more about this very soon as it will eventually appear on other airports in the country.

The TSA is finally testing a screening method that will allow passengers, even those without a TSA PreCheck, to keep their laptops in their bags during the process. This new screening method is being tested in Las Vegas, and if it works, it will expand...

Health Lifestyle

5 Chamomile Tea Benefits Your Body and Mind Need

I just recently returned from a trip to England, and out of all the habits or rituals I could have picked up from there, I think the one I’ll hang onto is tea, tea, and more tea.

You have it with breakfast, some at lunch, then there’s afternoon tea – or cream tea, my favorite – and some to finish your day. And when I say tea, I’m not talking one cup; most British people have an entire pot going all throughout the day, even for just one person.

Besides the fact that I love how afternoon tea is just an excuse to eat a small meal between lunch and dinner, the great thing about regularly adding tea into your life is the benefits a lot of teas have for your body and mind.

Chamomile has a range of benefits, for example, from sleep or digestion aid to mental health to heart health and more.

The chamomile flower contains flavonoids, sesquiterpenes, and antioxidants, and in a dried form, it can also be utilized for natural and herbal remedies. And it’s caffeine-free!

It’s not magic; the benefits of drinking chamomile tea are real, and here are a few of them.

Sleep

I think what we all know chamomile tea best for is that drinking a cup of it before you go to bed helps you get to sleep faster and have better quality sleep.

Thanks to an antioxidant called apigenin, which binds to certain receptors in your brain to reduce anxiety and initiate sleep, it has a natural and gentle calming effect.

A study was done in 2016 to find the links between sleep quality and depression in women and chamomile tea found that the group who drank chamomile before bed every night for two weeks had better sleep than those who didn’t; what’s more, when they stopped, the effects were reversed!

Anxiety

Anxiety has nearly become a chronic illness these days; in fact, 40 million Americans suffer from anxiety disorders, according to Medical News Today.  It’s the most common mental illness in America, and while some people use medication, this isn’t the answer for everyone.

Many people have begun using chamomile as a stress-reducer, either by dinking of cup of tea or using it in capsule form, as it benefits anxiety symptoms and helps to calm and ease insomnia.

If you’re struggling with anxiety and depression, you should consult a doctor. Chamomile may not work the same for you as it does for another.

Stomach Issues

If you ever suffer from menstrual cramps, an upset stomach, abdominal gas, indigestion, or irritable bowel syndrome, the anti-inflammatory, antispasmodic, and carminative properties chamomile tea contains help to soothe your stomach line.

It may even help decrease acid reflux, though more research needs to be done in order to confirm this.

Blood Sugar

If you or someone you know has diabetes, take note of this:

Drinking chamomile contains an antioxidant called quercetin which impacts particular enzymes that play a part in the diabetic process, so drinking chamomile tea may help lower blood sugar, according to research from Tabriz University of Medical Sciences in Iran.

The university conducted a small-scale study where 64 participants, between the ages of 30-60, with type 2 diabetes were observed. Half of them had chamomile every day at every meal for eight weeks while the other half just drank water.

After the eight weeks were up, the blood pressure of the first group was significantly lower on average than the latter group. More research needs to be conducted before these findings are conclusive, however.

Heart Health

Finally, some of the antioxidants you’ll find in chamomile are flavones, which have been studied over the years to measure their effectiveness in lowering blood pressure and cholesterol – including “bad” LDL cholesterol and triglycerides.

Since drinking chamomile tea regularly reduces stress, promotes sleep, and relaxes the blood vessels and arteries, it has the potential to help maintain healthy blood pressure levels if you drink it regularly.

Warning: If you’re on blood thinners, note that chamomile could increase the risk of bleeding, so be sure to consult your doctor.

So, maybe we should all do as the British do – or at least take up the habit of having a cup of chamomile tea before we go to bed at night.

Just like any other herbal tea, however, chamomile has some side effects, such as severe allergic reaction, eye irritation, hypersensitivity reactions, and vomiting.

Most likely you won’t encounter any of these, but it’s good to know the good and the bad and to check in with your doctor before you make it a regular part of your routine!

I just recently returned from a trip to England, and out of all the habits or rituals I could have picked up from there, I think the one I’ll hang onto is tea, tea, and more tea.

You have it with breakfast, some at lunch, then there’s afternoon tea –...

Nature & Tech Tech News

Tel Aviv Named One of the Best Cities in The World for Female Entrepreneurs

What better place to start a business than in your hometown? Or so architect and entrepreneur Lihi Gerstner thought, and since her hometown happened to be Tel Aviv, she was right.

On opening her first hotel there, she told From the Grapevine, “It’s one of the most pluralistic cities in the world. It’s a place where you are judged the least on your socio-economic status, where you come from or on your gender and orientation.”

Gerstner is not the only one to benefit from the opportunities Tel Aviv has to offer, particularly to women. In a new report unveiled last week at the Dell Women Entrepreneur Network Summit in Singapore, the city was named one of the best worldwide for female entrepreneurs.

Every two years, 50 cities are ranked based on five characteristics: access to capital, technology, talent, culture, and markets. Amsterdam, Pittsburgh, and Toronto also made the list with San Francisco and Silicon Valley at the top. Mexico City proved to be the most improved, going from a ranking of 45 in 2017 to No. 29 this year.

Females Changing the World

Wired Magazine named Inna Braverman, who based her start-up Eco Wave Power in Tel Aviv back in 2011, on its list of “Females Changing the World.”

She told us, “Being an entrepreneur is difficult. Being a female entrepreneur adds an additional layer of difficulty to the equation. However, a supportive environment is like wind under our wings. When we feel supported, we feel that we can achieve anything – regardless of whether we are a man or a woman.”

Braverman is sure that her substantial success could not have happened anywhere else. “I truly believe that Israel plays a significant role in my personal journey, confidence and achievements,” she said.

Sivan Ya’ari, another female entrepreneur who has made it in Tel Aviv with her non-profit Innovation: Africa, reports a great support system in the city. “Tel Aviv has proven to be a hub for creativity and innovation which helps us continually improve and reinforce our commitment to being efficient and reliable in bringing solar, water and agricultural technologies to African villages,” she explained.

“I couldn’t think of another city where our engineers could be able to brainstorm with other motivated change-makers in the fields of social impact and international development to directly transform the lives of the people we reach.”

The inaugural Forbes Under 30 Global Women’s Summit, an international gathering of top young talent, brought women from 39 countries to Tel Aviv earlier this year, and in the meantime, Facebook COO Sheryl Sandberg plans to visit the city in August this year to launch Facebook’s new offices.

Sheryl is well-known and loved for her 2013 book Lean In, a manifesto for women in the workplace. The offices, called “Playground,” will be a space offering courses and house start-ups as well as developers and business working on newer technology.

What better place to start a business than in your hometown? Or so architect and entrepreneur Lihi Gerstner thought, and since her hometown happened to be Tel Aviv, she was right.

On opening her first hotel there, she told From the Grapevine...

Animals

‘Wall of Sharks’ is a Real Phenomenon, and it Only Happens Once a Year

If you’ve ever wondered where the annual grey reef shark conference is, well, here’s your answer. Every year on the full moon of July, hundreds of sharks gather off of the island of Fakarava in French Polynesia, specifically in the south passage, a phenomenon that has been named the “Wall of Sharks.”

This area is one of the largest shark sanctuaries in the world, so it’s typical that you’d find a larger amount of this particular sea predator than you normally would in other places. However, on this single day of July, the usual number of about 250 sharks could shoot to a radical 900 all at one time.

So, what causes this astronomical change?

Well, this narrow passage where the open sea meets a lagoon is particularly full of sea life, enticing sharks to partake of plankton, fish, and more. However, it’s on the full moon of July that thousands of marbled groupers arrive to mate; in fact, it was while researching the aggregation of these groupers that biologists first discovered the gathering of grey reef sharks.

The groupers spawn over 20,000, providing the sharks a celebratory feast!

The pass is relatively quite small in comparison to this amount of sea life in it at once. In fact, “when diving inside, you can see both sides of the channel,” says shark researcher Dr. Johann Mourier. And, so, we have the nickname “Wall of Sharks.”

Brave Diving Challenge

Since it’s discovery, this site has become a favorite spot for courageous divers from all over the world. Top Dive hosts guided dives around French Polynesia year-round as well as during the short “Wall of Sharks” timeframe. The southern pass is a site to see all throughout the year – a “veritable undersea Garden of Eden,” according to Top Dive.

“Diving with 900 sharks?!” you might be thinking. And considering what sharks are rumored to be, it’s right to be alarmed. However, underwater photographer Lauren Ballesta assures divers that they are generally safe as sharks see humans as “obstacles not prey.”

Don’t base all your beliefs about sharks off of movies like Jaws. Sharks are vital to our ecosystem and are in need of our protection.

Whether or not your ready to dive in and enjoy a swim with these sharks, this phenomenon is simply incredible, one of the thrilling moments nature gives us to enjoy.

If you’ve ever wondered where the annual grey reef shark conference is, well, here’s your answer. Every year on the full moon of July, hundreds of sharks gather off of the island of Fakarava in French Polynesia, specifically in the south passage, a...

Animals Nature & Tech

Tourist Unwittingly Poses With Highly Poisonous Australian Octopus

Why is nature so beautiful? Why does a short walk amidst nature has such a calming influence on our mind? Why does the sight of flowers, butterflies, rainbows, and animals fill our hearts with joy unspeakable?

While evolution and science can explain many facts of our daily existence, the answer to this profound puzzle lies a little beyond the reaches of present-day science, and in the realms of the super-conscious.

Nature is beautiful because it is a manifestation of everything that is fervently pulsating with life on this planet. In the midst of nature, our minds become calm because we feel the pull of this joyful cosmic consciousness.

For the most part, people will do anything to avoid crawling creatures, especially when it comes down to disgusting, slimy, dangerous, poison octopus. Octopuses seem to tick most people’s instincts just by looking the way they look, not taking the dangerous factor in consideration.

This particular octopus might not be big however it happens to make the list in most dangerous and venomous octopus’s we’ve seen. This guy means business and that is clearly shown on this video.

Take a look at this story as a young Irish tourist was fishing with friends in Bundaberg, Queensland, on July 12 when he decided to pose for a photograph with an eye-catching mollusk that he later learned was the highly venomous blue-ring octopus, local media reported.

Johnpaul Lennon, 24, is seen in the footage laughingly asking a friend to place the octopus on his bare skin a few times, pulling his arm away in trepidation, then letting the creature briefly rest on him.

This big bhe blue-ringed octopus is one of the most venomous animals in Australia, with a bite that is capable of causing paralysis. British backpacker Ross Saunders, who recorded the interaction, said that at the time the men didn’t realize the octopus was poisonous.

More Luck Than Wits

Sauders posted to Facebook about the incident saying, “Thankfully no one was hurt and we can laugh about how close to death and stupid we were.” Saunders also said that the amateur fishermen got the hook out of the octopus and released it back into the water.

What do you think about this video? Make sure you tell us more in the comments down below. If you like what you see, don’t forget to share it with others who might like it as well. It just might be the creepy highlight of their day! Enjoy!

Why is nature so beautiful? Why does a short walk amidst nature has such a calming influence on our mind? Why does the sight of flowers, butterflies, rainbows, and animals fill our hearts with joy unspeakable?
While evolution and science can explain many...

Science TooCool

Russia Wants to 3D-Print ‘Large Scale Structures’ on the Moon

Journeys to the moon are undertaking more and more; before, it was a feat to simply set foot on the moon, but now that we’ve done that, new endeavors are being planned, especially by Russia.

A spokesperson for the country’s space corporation Roscosmos told Russian state-owned news agency TASS that they’re working on building a lunar base on the moon by 2040.

How will they do this? With 3D printing technologies that use lunar soil.

The lunar base is the final part of a three-stage program which begins with sending a spacecraft to orbit the moon, according to The Moscow Times. Stage two, expected to take place between 2025 and 2034, will be sending a manned mission to the moon for the purpose of beginning construction on the base.

Stage three, of course, will involve completing the lunar base, utilizing “additive technologies and local resources” for the “construction of large-scale structures,” said the Roscosmos spokesperson, who also noted that this third stage would include “furnishing scientific and industrial objects with equipment.”

They plan on creating structures with the capability of supporting astronaut life on the moon, as well.

3D- Printed Spare Parts

In the past, Dmitry Rogozin, the Director-General of Roscosmos, told the Russian news agency RIA Novosti that the 3D printing will be used to create repair equipment as well as new parts for the technology to reduce the need for resupply missions.

The Russian aerospace company NPO Lavochkin also said that the 3D printing technology would use solar energy as its power source and moon dust as its resource for creating objects.

“We’re talking about creating a long-term base, not constantly manned, but visitable,” Rogozin told RIA Novosti in November of 2018. Therefore, Roscosmos plans to have “avatars” on the lunar base controlled by humans on Earth.

NASA also has plans in mind for creating a permanent presence on the moon – just one of the steps towards finally reaching Mars – and plans to begin sustainable lunar surface missions before 2030, conducted from NASA’s lunar “Gateway,” a small spaceship meant to hold both astronauts and science experiments while it orbits the moon.

Next on NASA’s agenda, however, is getting the first woman on the moon, and they plan to accomplish this mission, called “Artemis,” by 2024. Many challenges need yet to be overcome to make it possible for people to be on the moon for any extended amount of time, however, so the next several years are full of research, experiments, and trials.

Journeys to the moon are undertaking more and more; before, it was a feat to simply set foot on the moon, but now that we’ve done that, new endeavors are being planned, especially by Russia.

A spokesperson for the country’s space corporation Roscosmos...

Earth Nature & Tech Science

Weird ‘Praying Monk’ Ice Daggers Host Life in an Extreme Environment

We first heard of nieves penitentes in scientific literature written by Charles Darwin back in the 1800s, but most of us have never heard of this strange term.

This is because nieves penitentes, strange blades of ice found in remote places, were discovered first in the Andes which are difficult and extreme and therefore, extremely hard to venture into, especially for an extended period of time for study.

However, a group of brave scientists made the trip into Chile’s Volcán Llullaillaco, recording their findings in the journal Arctic, Antarctic, and Alpine Research. “This is a very remote area that’s difficult to access,” study co-author Steve Schmidt, from the University of Colorado Boulder, said in a statement.

“The entire back of one of our pickup trucks had to be filled with barrels of drinking water. It’s no trivial thing to go out there, and that’s one of the reasons these formations haven’t been studied much.”

Nieves penitentes are long blades of hardened snow and ice ranging anywhere from a few inches to 16 feet long. They are found in cold, dry regions about 13,000 feet, the most extreme, high-altitude environments on Earth.

Since UV radiation is high and humidity is low, the temperature changes drastically and the winds are extreme, making it difficult for life to exist.

These snow formations usually form pointed toward our sun, and they were named nieves penitentes – meaning “penitent snow” – because of their resemblance to praying monks wearing white robes.

Red Ice?

What the scientists found was astounding: the penitente fields, found at a height of over 16,000 feet, had red ice patches. This means that microscopic life exists! Further analysis showed that the patches held a community of snow algae closely related to that which has been found in other alpine and polar environments.

“In this environment penitentes provide both water and shelter from harsh winds, high UV radiation and thermal fluctuations, creating an oasis in an otherwise extreme landscape,” the team wrote.

This is the first time life has been recorded in these formations. Since they are believed to exist on other bodies within the solar system, including Pluto and Jupiter’s moon Europa, this could provide insight into extra-terrestrial life.

The scientists say its meaning is significant when we consider the search for alien life.”Intriguingly, recent planetary investigations have suggested the existence of penitente-like structures on other planetary bodies of our solar system,” the team concludes.

“Therefore, penitentes and the harsh environment that surrounds them provide a new terrestrial analog for astrobiological studies of life beyond Earth.”Lara Vimercati, lead author of the study, said in a statement:

“Snow algae have been commonly found throughout the cryosphere on both ice and snow patches, but our finding demonstrated their presence for the first time at the extreme elevation of a hyper-arid site.” They found nieves penitentes near the Atacama Desert, one of the driest places on Earth; moreover, it’s landscape is thought to be most similar to Mars.

These discoveries giving insight into life existing on such harsh environments help scientists understand what types of places it could show up in the rest of the solar system. Currently, researchers strongly believe that Jupiter’s moon could be harboring microscopic lifeforms in its subsurface, saline ocean since they’ve found thousands of species beneath Antarctica’s surface.”

Our study shows how no matter how challenging the environmental conditions, life finds a way when there is availability of liquid water,” Vimercati said. Schmidt added: “We’re generally interested in the adaptations of organisms to extreme environments. This could be a good place to look for upper limits of life.”

We first heard of nieves penitentes in scientific literature written by Charles Darwin back in the 1800s, but most of us have never heard of this strange term.

This is because nieves penitentes, strange blades of ice found in remote places, were discovered...

Animals City Life

St James’s Park Gets Three New Pelicans

Wonderful News! There are three brand new arrivals to St James’s Park in London.  Their names are Sun, Moon, and Star.

James’s Park is famous for their pelicans who are able to roam freely but they seem to prefer staying close by the lake.  All three pelicans came all the way from the Prague Zoo and will soon be joined up with permanent residents Isla, Tiffany, and Gargi.

Actually, all three arrived here toward the end of May but have been kept out of public sight so they can settle into their new surroundings.

Hugh Smith, the Senor Wildlife Officer for The Royal Parks, believes it will take a few weeks for the two flocks to come together. There will be little interaction between the new pelicans and the established pelicans.

They will need a period of adjustment for bringing together three relatively tame birds with three semi-wild birds.  They do not see any disagreements just a little apprehension or suspicion while they get to know each other.

It will not take very long for these birds to start using the Pelican Rock because it’s natural for them.

A Gift For a King

Pelicans first arrived at St James’s Park in 1664 when the Russian Ambassador sent a gift to King Charles II.  This is the third time the Czech capital has sent pelicans to live in this very famous park which is located next to Buckingham Palace.

The Prague Zoo sent four in 1995 and another three in 2013.

Miroslav Bobek, Zoo Director, said he was honored to help St James’s Park to keep this 350-year tradition alive.  We believe that Sun, Moon, and Star will have a very happy life along with the other pelicans.

You can visit the park every day between 5 AM and Midnight and say hello to the Pelicans.  You can go to Duck Island Cottage between 2:30 PM and 3 PM to watch them being fed fresh fish.

Wonderful News! There are three brand new arrivals to St James’s Park in London.  Their names are Sun, Moon, and Star.

James’s Park is famous for their pelicans who are able to roam freely but they seem to prefer staying close by the lake.  All...

Inspiring Stories Science

New Alan Turing Banknote

Earlier this year, Alan Turing was named the most iconic figure of the 20th Century.  He is now the new image on the Bank of England’s £50 Note. What’s interesting, this is the last banknote to move from paper to polymer.  People will be able to use this note at the end of 2021.

Alan Turing worked for the British Government’s Code and Cipher School before WW II, He was a brilliant mathematician who cracked codes during World War Two. It is believed that he and other code breakers shortened the war by several years.

In 1939, he worked at Bletchley Park in Buckinghamshire. He was involved in top-secret work and was able to crack Germany’s military codes. Turing’s main job was to crack a code known as the Enigma Code. The code got its name from the machine called the Enigma used by the Germans to send secret messages.

Turing and Gordon Welchman, another code breaker, invented the machine called the Bombe.  This machine helped to significantly reduce the work of the code-breakers.

Because he spent the majority of his life working in secret, it was not until many years after his death that his legacy, life, and work came to light.  Due to his efforts during the war,  he had an enormous influence on the development of computer science and artificial intelligence.  There is no wonder why Alan Turing has been honored on the £ 50 note!

Decriminalization

Because being homosexual was illegal in Britain back then, in 1952 Turing was arrested for being gay. In 2013, he was posthumously pardoned which is the term for being pardoned after one’s death.  Turing died on June 7, 1954. In 2017, the government agreed to officially pardon men accused of similar crimes and expunged their criminal records.

This pardon is known as the Alan Turing Law.

Earlier this year, Alan Turing was named the most iconic figure of the 20th Century.  He is now the new image on the Bank of England’s £50 Note. What’s interesting, this is the last banknote to move from paper to polymer.  People will be able...

Entertainment News Tech News

Snapchat Challenging Netflix

Snapchat is taking on its rival services with a new feature which allows users to watch “Creator Shows’ original content. In case you don’t know about Original Shows, they are with celebrities and influencers like Arnold Schwarzenegger creating videos for Snapchat.

These videos are constructed and displayed inside the app as short, vertical original shows.   Arnold Schwarzenegger has a show called “ Rules of Success” with Arnold Schwarzenegger” which is made up of motivational words from the actor.

There is a new advancement making these shows available in a Nexflix-style.  At this time, the shows are integrated into the “Discover” section of the app, but according to Mashable, users will be able to swipe from the Discover page to access a dedicated “Shows” section on the app.

Cleaner and Shorter

Also, it seems cleaner than other parts of Snapchat making it much more comfortable for users streaming platforms such as Netflix or Amazon Prime. The layout is in a grid form which has shows you have recently watched and those you have subscribed to.

A spokesperson for Snapchat said the company is presently testing the feature but has not said when it will become fully available. Snapshot is currently pushing ahead with original content.

The new shows are targeting the majority under 34 Snapchat user base including a scripted drama called “Two Sides”. This show is about a teenage couple breaking up and then showing both sides of the argument at the same time.

New programs, documentaries, and comedies are also featured and the company who owns Snapchat said the time being spent watching these shows has literally tripled over the past year.

Snapchat is taking on its rival services with a new feature which allows users to watch “Creator Shows’ original content. In case you don’t know about Original Shows, they are with celebrities and influencers like Arnold Schwarzenegger creating...