Science & Technology



Mel Melcon/Los Angeles Times/TNS

Editorial: Big Oil reaps record profits while the planet burns. California should curb its greed

Chevron, Shell, Exxon Mobil and other oil companies made more money than ever in 2022, showing just how massive a windfall they reaped as surging gas prices made it a struggle for drivers to afford filling up.

The billions in record profits they posted this week bolster the appeal of California Gov. Gavin Newsom’s effort to curb oil industry ...Read more


Want people to use less water? Tell them it's going to cost more

When people hear that their water is going to cost more, they start to use less of it.

That seemingly obvious finding comes from a new study led by researchers at the National University of Singapore and published this week in the peer-reviewed journal Nature. But the researchers also stumbled across an interesting nuance: The announcement of a...Read more


Idaho grizzly bears near Yellowstone could lose endangered species protections

BOISE, Idaho — One day after Idaho officials threatened to sue the federal government for failing to respond to petitions to remove grizzly bears from Endangered Species Act protections, the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service said it will move forward with reconsidering the bears’ position — though it won’t consider Idaho’s argument.

Fish...Read more

New waves of tech layoffs will eliminate more than 1,000 Bay Area jobs

FREMONT — Five tech companies, including software and hardware firms, have revealed plans to slash well over 1,000 Bay Area jobs, marking a fresh wave of cutbacks, new state government filings show.

Lam Research, Salesforce, Workday, Splunk and Autodesk have disclosed their intentions to eliminate about 1,089 jobs at an array of Bay Area ...Read more


Nina Metz: To AI or not to AI? It's not even a question -- Hollywood is embracing artificial intelligence

The artificial intelligence text generator ChatGPT has been the subject of debate recently, but let’s take the AI conversation a step further, to Hollywood. More and more, I’m seeing examples of manipulated performances pop up on social media — altering an actor’s gaze or the words they’re saying — and it’s being presented with ...Read more

Michael M. Santiago/Getty Images North America/TNS

Meta Shares Soar Most Since 2013 on Zuckerberg's Vision

Meta Platforms Inc. is headed for its biggest single-day gain in almost a decade after Chief Executive Officer Mark Zuckerberg laid out plans to make the social media giant leaner, more efficient and more decisive.

Zuckerberg, who has spent the past year promising a faraway future in a digital world called the metaverse, was more focused in a ...Read more

David Middlecamp/San Luis Obsipo Tribune/David Middlecamp

California's final monarch butterfly count is in, and it's even better than last year

SACRAMENTO, Calif. -- The final tallies are in, and it’s been another good year for monarch butterflies in California.

In total, 335,479 of the important pollinators were counted across 272 overwintering spots across the state from Nov. 12 through Dec. 4, according to the Xerces Society for Invertebrate Conservation, an international ...Read more

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Editorial: The healing of the ozone layer gives hope, but addressing climate change will be harder

Now for some good news about our planet: The ozone layer is healing.

A recent United Nations-backed assessment found continued progress in the global effort to repair the shield-like layer high up in the stratosphere that protects Earth and its inhabitants from harmful ultraviolet radiation that causes skin cancer and hurts plants and animals. ...Read more

Sony Interactive Entertainment/Sony Interactive Entertainment/TNS

Review: PlayStation’s DualSense Edge is elite in most of the right ways

When Microsoft released its Xbox One Elite Wireless Controller in 2015, PlayStation fans were wondering when the company would release its own premium controller. After all, PlayStation had released some of the biggest innovations in the business with the handlebar design and a layout that has become standard in the industry.

With the ...Read more

Jim Rossman/Jim Rossman/TNS

Jim Rossman: Junk emails can be maddening, but ignoring them is the best option

This week a reader writes that she’s been getting 25 or more spam emails per day that end up in the junk folder of her AOL email account.

She uses an iPhone 8 for her email.

She says the same people keep sending the messages, but she’s happy they end up in the junk folder.

Her question is how to stop them or block them without opening ...Read more


Preview: ‘Like a Dragon: Ishin!’ brings an old formula into the past

The “Like a Dragon” series is no stranger to spinoffs and fresh takes on the series. It’s been through a zombie apocalypse and a story focused on the other side of the law. It has revamped its combat system and introduced new main characters.

The upcoming entry offers yet another approach to its style of storytelling, but the series ...Read more

Tyger Williams/The Philadelphia Inquirer/TNS

Meet the man running Liza Minnelli Outlives, Twitter’s most unlikely source for breaking news

PHILADELPHIA — Liza Minnelli has outlived 507 major news events — at least according to superfan and former employee Scott Gorenstein.

His Twitter account @LiZaOutlives has chronicled Minnelli’s lifespan through news headlines since 2020. Minnelli has outlived not just Mikhail Gorbachev and Stephen Sondheim, but Herschel Walker’s ...Read more


Gadgets: Conversation Clear Plus smart earbuds block background noise in loud settings

Earlier this year at the Consumer Electronics Show in Las Vegas, Sennheiser had members of the media gather at Carversteak at Resorts World to preview their new Conversation Clear Plus earbuds.

While they look like standard earbuds anyone would wear these days (the appearance is a crucial point), they are far from just a source to listen to ...Read more


Meta shares soar as Zuckerberg ushers in 'year of efficiency'

Meta Platforms Inc. Chief Executive Officer Mark Zuckerberg struck a new tone with investors Wednesday: The social media giant will be leaner, more efficient and more decisive, with a big assist from artificial intelligence.

The company’s shares gained more than 20% in late trading on fourth-quarter revenue that beat expectations. Zuckerberg,...Read more

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Epic California snowpack is now the deepest it's been in decades

Drought-weary California is entering February with deeper snowpack than it has seen in four decades, reflecting a healthy boost in the state's supply of water but also spurring concerns about dryness in the months ahead.

Statewide Sierra snowpack was 205% of normal for the date on Wednesday, said officials with the Department of Water Resources...Read more


Meta soars after sales beat, rosy forecast as Facebook grows

Meta Platforms Inc. posted quarterly sales that topped estimates, gave a rosy revenue forecast and indicated Facebook and Instagram still have room to grow, signaling it’s on course for a turnaround after its most difficult year.

The company’s shares jumped more than 18% in extended trading after a fourth-quarter sales beat that was fueled ...Read more

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Duke Health draws transparency criticism over patient data deal with tech company

For each of Duke Health’s hundreds of thousands of patients, the institution keeps an exhaustive record of valuable health data.

Every medication they’ve been prescribed, every blood pressure reading or temperature recorded, every diagnosis given, every doctor’s note and images from every MRI or X-ray are all cataloged in Duke’s ...Read more

Western wildfires destroyed 246% more homes and buildings over the past decade – fire scientists explain what's changing

It can be tempting to think that the recent wildfire disasters in communities across the West were unlucky, one-off events, but evidence is accumulating that points to a trend.

In a new study, we found a 246% increase in the number of homes and structures destroyed by wildfires in the contiguous Western U.S. between the past two ...Read more


Environmental group urges California to limit the growing of almonds and alfalfa

LOS ANGELES — As drought and climate change continue to wreak havoc on California’s water supply, an environmental advocacy group is calling on the state to limit the cultivation of thirsty crops like almonds and alfalfa, saying the agriculture industry is guzzling most of the state’s supplies at the expense of residents.

Large ...Read more

The EV transition isn't just about cars – the broader goal should be access to clean mobility for everyone

The race to decarbonize passenger cars and light-duty trucks in the U.S. is accelerating. Battery electric vehicles accounted for almost 6% of all new vehicle sales in 2022, up from close to 3% in 2021, and demand is outstripping supply, even as manufacturers roll out new models and designs. The Biden administration is spending billions of ...Read more