Science & Technology



Joe Burbank/Orlando Sentinel/TNS

Lessons from shuttle Columbia disaster could stave off next tragedy

ORLANDO, Fla. — “Never again” is the phrase echoed among NASA leaders recalling the last major tragedy in the space program that occurred 20 years ago this week, when Space Shuttle Columbia broke apart over Texas on Feb. 1, 2003, never making its way back home to Florida.

But with more spacecraft, more players and farther-flung ...Read more


ResMed rings up record $1B in sales in latest quarter led by connected sleep apnea devices

For the past 18 months, ResMed Chief Executive Mick Farrell has been publicly outspoken in urging that medical devices get priority access to semiconductors amid global chip shortages coming out of the pandemic.

Now, with macro-economic headwinds slowing demand for certain consumer electronics, the bottleneck of chips available for medical ...Read more

E. Jason Wambsgans/Chicago Tribune/TNS

3 Chicago-area refineries that dump toxins into Lake Michigan, rivers are among worst polluters in US, study shows

Oil refineries are dumping massive amounts of toxic chemicals and heavy metals into the Great Lakes and the nation’s rivers with little, if any, oversight from government regulators, according to a new analysis that found some of the worst polluters are in the Chicago area.

During 2021 alone, 81 refineries in the United States that treat ...Read more

An AI bot passed this Wharton professor's exam. Here's why he's not concerned

Wharton professor Christian Terwiesch was sitting with his grown children around the dinner table when the subject of artificial intelligence came up. Both of his kids had been experimenting with the nascent technology in their respective fields: "one of them is interested in design...and the other one is interested in computer science."

...Read more

Carlos Barria/POOL/AFP/Getty Images North America/TNS

International AIDS relief program, at 20, looks to next steps

BANGKOK — Saturday marks a major milestone in the global fight to eliminate the AIDS epidemic, as the U.S. President’s Emergency Plan for AIDS Relief celebrates its 20th anniversary as the largest commitment by a country to combat a disease.

PEPFAR, launched under then-President George W. Bush, has now spanned four administrations, operates...Read more

BuzzFeed shares surge 120% on plans to embrace OpenAI

BuzzFeed Inc. shares surged by a record on news that the digital-media company plans to use OpenAI to bolster some of its content creation.

The stock rose by 120% Thursday, bringing BuzzFeed’s market value to nearly $300 million, in its biggest gain since going public via a blank-check merger in December 2021. The news sparked a trading ...Read more

Justin Sullivan/Getty Images North America/TNS

Intel and Spatronics jolt Bay Area job market with more tech layoffs: new filings

SANTA CLARA, California — The jolts from Intel’s announced job cuts have intensified with disclosures of plans by the chipmaking giant to slash more jobs in Santa Clara, California, according to new state filings.

Spartronics, a maker of printed circuit boards and other electronic equipment, revealed in a separate filing with the state ...Read more

BuzzFeed shares triple on plans to embrace OpenAI for content

BuzzFeed Inc. shares surged by a record on news that the digital-media company plans to use OpenAI to bolster some of its content creation.

The stock rose by as much as 203% on Thursday, bringing BuzzFeed’s market value to around $400 million, in its biggest gain since going public via a blank-check merger in December 2021. The news sparked a...Read more

California Department of Fish and Wildlife/TNS

Threatened red fox pops up south of Yosemite, increasing species' survival chances

The sleek and tenacious Sierra Nevada red fox — once thought to have disappeared from the mountain range that bears its name — has been detected near the eastern boundary of Sequoia and Kings Canyon national parks.

The discovery by scientists from the California Department of Fish and Wildlife gives them hope that the population of the ...Read more

Tyrone Beason/Los Angeles Times/TNS

California wants to ban the toxic chemical that gives chrome its classic shine

LOS ANGELES — For decades, hexavalent chromium has provided the silvery showroom finish to countless consumer products, from automobile bumpers and grilles to kitchen faucets and light fixtures. It has also served as an indispensable rust-resistant coating for aviation components, such as airplane landing gear.

But while hardened chrome is ...Read more

Koei Tecmo America/TNS/TNS

Preview: ‘Wo Long: Fallen Dynasty’ a different take on the ‘Nioh’ formula

Team Ninja has had a fascinating transformation from the days when “Ninja Gaiden” and “Dead or Alive” used to be the pillars of their studio. Since then, they’ve dabbled in other franchises such as “Final Fantasy” and “Marvel Ultimate Alliance,” but the genre they’ve come to embrace is historical fiction.

It places them in...Read more


Review: Victrix Pro BFG is the Swiss Army Knife of elite controllers

In the past, having a superior build quality and paddles were enough to make a console controller elite. The luxurious feel of better materials and the noticeable edge from the extra buttons had been enough to lure gamers to drop more money on a peripheral that gave them an advantage.

Times have changed though, and pro-style controllers have ...Read more


Gadgets: Bluesound Pulse M wireless streaming speaker is one-stop shopping

Shopping for a top-of-the-line, wireless speaker with room-filling sound — the type that can be the life of the party with just crystal-clear background music — can be a daunting, overwhelming and frustrating task with the number of choices to choose from. The Bluesound Pulse M wireless streaming speaker is one-stop shopping.

The Omni-...Read more

Jim Rossman/Jim Rossman/TNS

Jim Rossman: Don't be afraid of smartphone eSIMs

I learned a good lesson this week about my iPhone.

Instead of a reader asking a question, this week’s topic is one that I bring to the table.

I’ve been testing Apple’s new iPhone 14 Pro for the last few months, and it is time to send it back.

In previous years, this wouldn’t be a problem: Straighten out a paper clip, push it into a ...Read more

Barbara Haddock Taylor/Baltimore Sun/TNS

Apes talk in a 'language' that humans can understand, study suggests. But why?

It turns out you don’t have to be Jane Goodall to understand apes.

Even untrained humans can decipher ape communication, including gestures related to grooming and sex, according to a new study published this week in the journal PLOS Biology.

The findings suggest humans may be able to tap into shared ancestral knowledge preserved long after ...Read more

Brian Cassella/Chicago Tribune/TNS

Environmentalists to file lawsuit over Illinois' Bell Bowl Prairie, home to the endangered rusty patched bumblebee

CHICAGO — The fight to preserve Bell Bowl Prairie in Rockford, Illinois, where federally endangered rusty patched bumblebees have been found, ramped up this week, with environmentalists saying they intend to return to federal court.

The Natural Land Institute, a nonprofit that opposes the Chicago Rockford International Airport’s plan to ...Read more

Atlanta's BeltLine shows how urban parks can drive 'green gentrification' if cities don't think about affordable housing at the start

Is Atlanta a good place to live? Recent rankings certainly say so. In September 2022, Money magazine rated Atlanta the best place to live in the U.S., based on its strong labor market and job growth. The National Association of Realtors calls it the top housing market to watch in 2023, noting that Atlanta’s housing prices are lower than ...Read more

Kris B. Mamula/Pittsburgh Post-Gazette/TNS

Going faster takes less effort with smart shoes from Carnegie Mellon spinout

Walking faster with less effort is the idea behind a hot new consumer product that looks like skates and is being developed in the city's East End.

Think Roller Blades, only powered by artificial intelligence that allows each skate to "talk" to the other, instantly coordinating the person's gait with the rolling resistance of the wheels. So you...Read more


Tech review: Zendure SuperBase V portable power station can do almost anything, but it'll cost you

I’ve reviewed a few portable power stations, which are big rechargeable batteries you can use to power your stuff if the electricity goes out or you are away from any sources of power (off the grid).

As the batteries inside these power stations have increased in capacity, and companies have figured out a way to recharge them faster and chain ...Read more

Rokas Tenys/Dreamstime/TNS

Microsoft invests $10 billion in ChatGPT maker OpenAI

Microsoft Corp. is investing $10 billion in OpenAI, whose artificial intelligence tool ChatGPT has lit up the internet since its introduction in November, amassing more than a million users within days and touching off a fresh debate over the role of AI in the workplace.

The new support, building on $1 billion Microsoft poured into OpenAI in ...Read more