Science & Technology



130,000-year-old bones could rewrite story of when humans first appeared in the Americas

Shattered mastodon bones from a Southern California site bear the scars of human activity from 130,700 years ago, a team of scientists says -- pushing back the generally accepted date that humans are thought to have settled North America by a whopping 115,000 or so years.

If verified and corroborated by other scientists, the discovery described...Read more

Tech Q&A: How safe is it to use a tablet on a public Wi-Fi?

Q: When my apartment building added free Wi-Fi, I bought my first wireless device, a Kindle Fire tablet computer (my PC has a wired internet connection.) But I wonder what security software I should use on the tablet, and how concerned I should be that the building Wi-Fi network is very public -- I don't even need a password to sign in. Should I...Read more

Jennifer Van Grove: The internet FAQ for cord-cutters

The spinning wheel of death. That's how I refer to one of the most annoying complications associated with streaming TV: buffering.

The problem is scary enough to keep you glued to your cable TV provider, and rightfully so. After all, if you love TV, you're not going to want to tolerate slow program load times or all-out freezes.

Thankfully, ...Read more

After 13 years at Saturn, Cassini spacecraft is ready for its grand finale

What do you do with a 20-year-old spacecraft that has spent 13 years orbiting Saturn, logged 4.1 billion miles in space and is about to run out of fuel?

You could crash it into one of the dozens of moons that orbit the ringed planet. Or you could let it hang out in a wide orbit around the gas giant where it would stay out of the way.

But the ...Read more

The man behind 2016's biggest US tech IPO shares how the deal went down

SAN JOSE, Calif. -- While most Silicon Valley tech startups were shying away from the public market last year and analysts were sounding alarm bells over the worrisome lack of IPOs, San Jose-based Nutanix was one of the few companies that took the plunge.

The enterprise cloud company in September priced the biggest U.S.-based tech IPO of 2016, ...Read more

Helpware: Hard drive cloning program too techy for most consumers

If you've taken the sensible step of upgrading your PC with a solid state drive, you'll face a bigger challenge than just installing the drive: You'll have to transfer your operating system and files from the old drive to the new.

Paragon Drive Copy might have the solution. Its nerdy interface will lead you through the steps for cloning an ...Read more

Science takes a back seat in Trump's first 100 days

WASHINGTON -- When a catastrophic earthquake and tsunami struck Japan on March 11, 2011, the White House suddenly found itself confronting a nuclear crisis halfway across the globe.

Radiation was wafting from the Fukushima Daiichi nuclear power plant, and President Barack Obama needed to make immediate decisions: Should he evacuate U.S. ...Read more

'We need to be out here': Thousands march in downtown LA to support science in the Trump era

LOS ANGELES -- Thousands of scientists, students and activists took to the streets of downtown Los Angeles on Saturday for the March for Science, one of more than 500 such events being held around the world.

After a rally in Pershing Square, the march began at 11 a.m. with participants walking about seven blocks to City Hall, where several ...Read more

Thousands crowd Washington streets for Science Day

WASHINGTON -- Scientists and their supporters took to the streets of Washington and other cities around the world Saturday, with many expressing worries about a diminishing role for fact-based research under the Trump administration.

Waving signs with slogans like "Science is Real" and "Ask for Evidence!" the marchers gathered at the base of ...Read more

A rocky 'super-Earth' with potential for liquid water is found 39 light-years away

Astronomers say they have pinpointed a potentially habitable planet that might offer our best chance of characterizing an alien atmosphere in the near future.

The planet LHS 1140 b, described in the journal Nature, provides a tempting target for astronomers looking to probe an exoplanet's thin but essential shell of air, which could offer clues...Read more

How a Pinterest engineer is helping others find inspiration through visual search

SAN FRANCISCO -- Searching for ideas on how to arrange photos in her college dorm room, Cindy Zhang turned to Pinterest for some inspiration as a freshman.

Now, the 23-year-old software engineer, who joined Pinterest in 2015, is helping 150 million monthly active users on the social bookmarking site tap into their creative side.

Zhang works on...Read more

Jennifer Van Grove: A sports junkie's journey to cut the cord

Live sports programming was, until recently, nearly impossible to watch without a cable TV subscription. Now, in theory, even a cord-cutter can tune into games from all different sporting disciplines.

So why don't we test that hypothesis?

If you're following this column, you know I'm helping three households with varying needs cut the cord. ...Read more

Tech Q&A: Sorting out the conflict between Google Chrome and Malwarebytes

I frequently recommend the free Malwarebytes security program to clean PCs infected with viruses or other malicious software. So I was puzzled when two readers said that it disabled their Google Chrome browsers.

The problem seems to be linked to a trial offer from Malwarebytes. And not everyone is affected.

Here's the gist: I recommend the ...Read more

For these startups, Silicon Valley's diversity problem brings big business

SAN JOSE, Calif. -- It's one of the tech industry's biggest embarrassments. But for a handful of startups, Silicon Valley's lack of diversity is also a money-making machine.

Capitalizing on the pressure Bay Area tech companies face to hire and promote more women and people of color, a new class of startups has emerged peddling diversity-focused...Read more

Tech entrepreneur turned small-town Texas values into a global social network

The gig: Nirav Tolia, 45, is the co-founder and chief executive of Nextdoor, the neighborhood social network that lets people connect with their neighbors, share news, tips and sometimes gossip with their local community. The San Francisco-based 152-employee startup has raised $210 million in venture capital funding and boasts more than 126,000 ...Read more

Archosaur fossils are forcing scientists to rethink evolution of dinosaurs

Scientists have identified one of the earliest known dinosaur relatives -- and it doesn't look anything like they expected.

Researchers had thought that the oldest dinosaur cousins would look rather like small, two-legged dinosaurs themselves. Instead, Teleocrater rhadinus actually stretched 7 to 10 feet long, boasted a long neck and tail, and ...Read more

Web Buzz: An app for those traveling with kids

Parents, need an extra hand entertaining the kids? With your Yuggler app you can build a list of fun things to do at your destination that puts the kids' interests first.


What it does: Provides moms and dads with a list of kid-friendly activities and resources that can be fine-tuned to fit the ages and interests of their ...Read more

E-sports' old college try

LOS ANGELES -- Duran Parsi headed to Pepperdine's law school three years ago with a mission: By the end, he'd either practice law or commit to his fledgling e-sports business.

With graduation near, Parsi might need to grant himself an extension. Collegiate Star League, the 30-person e-sports operation run from his apartment, has essentially ...Read more

What wine did Jesus drink at the Last Supper?

PHILADELPHIA -- What kind of wine did Jesus serve at the Last Supper?

Patrick McGovern, a specialist in ancient beverages at the University of Pennsylvania Museum of Archaeology and Anthropology, has a few ideas.

Rich, concentrated wines, flavored with spices and fruits, were common in the Jerusalem area 2,000 years ago, McGovern tells the ...Read more

Liquid 'plume' found on moons of Jupiter, Saturn

BALTIMORE -- Scientists have found signs of potentially life-supporting chemical energy in a plume of liquid erupting from the surface of one of Saturn's moons and, for a second time, have also spotted a similar, intriguing fountain on one of Jupiter's moons, NASA announced Thursday.

The latter discovery, on the moon Europa, was led by a ...Read more


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