Science & Technology




Weather clears as SpaceX knocks out overnight satellite launch

ORLANDO, Fla. — After a week of stormy weather delays, SpaceX waited just a bit longer but managed an early Saturday liftoff of a satellite to knock out the Space Coast’s 26th launch of the year.

A Falcon 9 carrying the Arabsat BADR-8 telecommunications satellite headed for geosynchronous orbit let the winds die down from the opening of the...Read more

Proposed NC law could mean Supreme Court wetlands ruling has 'drastic' impact

WASHINGTON — A U.S. Supreme Court ruling this week rolled back protections for many wetlands nationwide. North Carolina is considering a law that would require the state to use the same test for a “wetland” as the federal government, which advocates warn would leave vast swaths of fragile areas like this one in Aurora, NC, without ...Read more

The Supreme Court just shriveled federal protection for wetlands, leaving many of these valuable ecosystems at risk

The U.S. Supreme Court has ruled in Sackett v. EPA that federal protection of wetlands encompasses only those wetlands that directly adjoin rivers, lakes and other bodies of water. This is an extremely narrow interpretation of the Clean Water Act that could expose many wetlands across the U.S. to filling and development.

Under this ...Read more

Colorado River states bought time with a 3-year water conservation deal – now they need to think bigger

Arizona, California and Nevada have narrowly averted a regional water crisis by agreeing to reduce their use of Colorado River water over the next three years. This deal represents a temporary solution to a long-term crisis. Nonetheless, as a close observer of western water policy, I see it as an important win for the region.

Seven ...Read more

2023 hurricane forecast: Get ready for a busy Pacific storm season, quieter Atlantic than recent years thanks to El Niño

The official 2023 hurricane season forecasts were just released, and while the Atlantic may see an average storm season this year, a busier-than-normal season is forecast in the eastern Pacific, meaning heightened risks for Mexico and Hawaii.

A big reason is El Niño.

El Niño typically means trouble for the Pacific and a ...Read more

Gina Ferazzi/Los Angeles Times/TNS

Snowpack predicted to retreat in California's mountains due to climate change

This winter’s major storms laid down one of the largest snowpacks recorded in California’s Sierra Nevada, along with an unusual amount of snow at low mountain elevations.

But such prolific snowfall at lower elevations is set to become increasingly rare in coming years as climate change drives temperatures higher, according to new research. ...Read more

Farmers face a soaring risk of flash droughts in every major food-growing region in coming decades, new research shows

Flash droughts develop fast, and when they hit at the wrong time, they can devastate a region’s agriculture.

They’re also becoming increasingly common as the planet warms.

In a new study published May 25, 2023, we found that the risk of flash droughts, which can develop in the span of a few weeks, is on pace to rise in ...Read more

Monica Herndon/The Philadelphia Inquirer/TNS

Philly will have more heat waves, and the Delaware projected to rise more than a foot over the next 25 years

The Delaware River could rise well more than a foot by midcentury, and temperatures could heat up nearly 6 degrees, accompanied by a rise in extreme heat days, according to a new report that localized data to create a snapshot of local climate change in Philadelphia.

The report came from a coalition formed in response to rallies and a petition ...Read more

Ashley Miznazi/Miami Herald/TNS

Restoring a barrier island forest may be key to protecting Miami from storm surge

After months of using weed-killers, saws, shovels and hand-yanking invasive latherleaf fern out of a tropical forest on Virginia Key Beach Park, City of Miami parks naturalist Gloria Alejandra Antia was finally able to begin the process of rebuilding.

Antia dug a hole and planted a small native tree just steps from the shoreline.

“The health...Read more

Jim Rossman/TNS/TNS

Jim Rossman: Your phone can help you read the fine print

It’s no secret — we are all getting older.

Last week in this column, I mentioned reading the small print on your USB charger to see how much power it could provide.

The picture I took of the small print on a charger brought a few emails from readers complaining about being able to read very small type in various places.

My wife keeps a ...Read more

Electronic Arts/TNS/TNS

Review: 'Star Wars Jedi: Survivor' charts new ground in sprawling sequel

The trouble with making a sequel is that it has to be different from the previous game. Otherwise, it feels more like an expansion than a full-blown new game. That's the conundrum that faced Respawn Entertainment when creating ""Star Wars Jedi: Survivor."

How could the sequel cover new ground while feeling close to the original? It's a ...Read more

GE Lighting/TNS

Gadgets: Organize cable clutter with NewQ USB-C 16-in-1 docking station

With new computers come new ports and configurations. Using them can be as easy as plugging in a cable — that is, if there are enough ports, the ports you need, and the power necessary to power your device.

If any of this is a problem, you'll need a docking station, and that's where the NewQ USB-C 16-in-1 docking station shines with all the...Read more

Humble Games/TNS

Top 5 games from the Humble Games showcase

Humble Games is different from other publishers because of its charitable approach and its treatment of indie games. The company occupies a space where it can treat independent projects almost like Triple-A titles.

That was evident as Humble Games showed off some of its upcoming offerings in a showcase last week. It revealed a wide of range ...Read more

Michigan launches consortium of higher ed, employers to prepare semiconductor workforce

The Michigan Economic Development Corp., the state's economic development organization, is spearheading the launch of a consortium of higher education institutions and employers to train workers for jobs in the growing semiconductor industry.

That's according to an announcement Wednesday by Lt. Gov. Garlin Gilchrist II, MEDC officials, and ...Read more


Amazon's answer to ChatGPT seen as incomplete Inc.’s cloud customers are clamoring to get their hands on the ChatGPT-style technology the company unveiled six weeks ago. But instead of being allowed to test it, many are being told to sit tight, prompting concerns the artificial intelligence tool isn’t fully baked.

Amazon’s announcement that it had entered the generative ...Read more

Glen Stubbe/Minneapolis Star Tribune/TNS

Analysts expect Medtronic to deliver frank financial answers this week

Medtronic is facing sluggish sales growth, is in the midst of deep cost-cutting and started ongoing global layoffs in April. It's also spinning off businesses with weaker profit margins.

So med-tech analysts will be watching closely Thursday as the world's largest medical device maker reports its fiscal fourth-quarter results.

Wall Street ...Read more


China's digital currency could threaten the US dollar. Should the Fed build its own?

PHILADELPHIA — From his office overlooking the Schuylkill River, Paul Melchiorre is puzzling over which new billion-dollar tech giants could rise from this economic slowdown.

A onetime SAP manager, who made the bulk of his fortune building software developers iPipeline and Anaplan, Melchiorre has spread his earnings among a string of tech ...Read more


Can beer convince Americans to drink recycled wastewater?

Earlier this year, a new beer appeared on the menu at Fox City Brewing Company in Forsyth, Georgia. Opened three years ago in a former ice house an hour south of Atlanta, Fox City serves pale ales, stouts and other microbrews. The new addition, called Revival Lager, stands apart from anything it’s made before — and from nearly every other ...Read more

Allen J. Schaben/Los Angeles Times/TNS

Editorial: Colorado River water deal gives California another reprieve. For now

The Colorado River deal announced Monday is more of a temporary reprieve than a solution to plummeting water supplies. The deep water cuts for California, Arizona and Nevada will tide over thirsty residents and farmers only until the end of 2026.

The real reckoning comes when operating agreements expire for Lake Mead, which feeds the Colorado�...Read more

Stephen Brashear/Getty Images North America/TNS

Microsoft to bring Copilot, an AI personal assistant, to Windows

Microsoft will integrate a ChatGPT-like system, called "Windows Copilot," in all PC apps, the Redmond, Washington-based tech giant announced Tuesday. The Copilot will be available for Windows 11 as a preview in June.

Windows Copilot will be the user's personal assistant, the company announced during the Microsoft Build conference that runs ...Read more