Science & Technology



This futuristic pill senses signs of disease inside the body, then sends a wireless alert to a phone

In the 1966 science fiction classic "Fantastic Voyage," a submarine crew is miniaturized so it can squeeze inside a human body and travel to a hot spot where medical assistance is needed.

A team from the Massachusetts Institute of Technology has adapted this idea for real life, replacing the shrunken squad with specially engineered E. coli ...Read more

HQ2 sweepstakes: Amazon's business much more than e-commerce

There's the part of Amazon that sells and ships books, shoes, electronics, toys and even groceries.

There's the side of Amazon that makes movies and television shows, e-readers and devices for the connected home. There's also the Amazon business that forms a vital link in the global internet infrastructure that helps companies and governments ...Read more

Can seaweed make cow farts less potent? These scientists hope to find out

SACRAMENTO, Calif. -- Early indications of a University of California, Davis study show that feeding dairy cows seaweed may reduce methane emissions caused by their defecation, belching and flatulence, the university announced Thursday.

UC Davis animal science department chair Ermias Kebreab and animal nutrition graduate student Breanne Roque ...Read more

Asteroid that wiped out the dinosaurs also shaped the evolution of birds

Scientists studying plant life around the extinction event that killed the dinosaurs have made a surprising discovery: Out of all the birds living at the time, only the ground-dwelling species survived.

The finding, described in the journal Current Biology, reveals how the avian winners and losers in the wake of the Cretaceous-Paleogene ...Read more

How America will launch more rockets, and faster

In the 1960s, a rocket launch was big news all over the world. Sixty years later, it's still a big deal. Sure, SpaceX has leaped forward with reusable vehicles, but the ability to make space travel a reliable, everyday event is still a way off.

The U.S. government and some private companies want to change that. The Pentagon's Defense Advanced ...Read more

'We want to show who they are': How age-enhanced photos of missing children are created

It happens everyday on Facebook, Instagram and in real life -- that moment when you see someone you haven't seen in years. Maybe they've gone gray or gained a few pounds, but there's no doubt you're looking at that friend from high school or the cousin who moved away when you were both 10 years old. You see the boy you once rode bikes with in ...Read more

Snap Inc. launches accelerator program to invest in media start-ups

Snap Inc. will dole out $150,000 investments to various media start-ups this fall as part of an accelerator program it announced Wednesday called Yellow.

For the first cohort of the program, which starts in September and goes for three months, the company is seeking start-ups that "have a vision for what mobile storytelling can be."

In ...Read more

Homelessness 'a solvable problem'? Marc Benioff says yes at Salesforce Tower's grand opening

SAN FRANCISCO -- Salesforce Chief Executive Marc Benioff, a billionaire who started his cloud-based business-software company in a San Francisco apartment nearly 20 years ago, used Tuesday's grand opening of the new 1,070-foot-tall Salesforce Tower as a clarion call for the city to recommit itself to ending family homelessness on San Francisco's...Read more

Southern California suppliers learn to adjust to slowdown in satellite orders

SpaceX on Tuesday blasted six small commercial satellites to low-Earth orbit. It was the company's 10th launch this year -- but the payload itself may be a sign of what's to come.

Like many companies, Iridium Communications Inc. has been developing a constellation of satellites. Those smaller satellites are set to gradually replace the giants ...Read more

Can simulating evolution on a computer explain our enormous brains?

Compared to the rest of the animal kingdom, the human brain is way out of whack.

Our brains are roughly six times larger than what you would expect for a placental mammal of our stature, scientists say.

And no other animal has a brain as large as ours relative to body size.

So why did humans evolve to have such large brains when other animals...Read more

Jennifer Van Grove: Snoozing on the mommy job

Earlier this year, I brought home something both completely life-changing and terrifying. Sure, I could be talking about Makena, my now 3-month old baby girl. But really I'm referring to Snoo, the smart bassinet that my husband and I purchased after a month or so of sleep deprivation.

The invention of Dr. Harvey Karp, the pediatrician and ...Read more

A rare great ape, a 130-foot-tall tree and an extinct marsupial lion make the Top 10 New Species list for 2018

The highest branches of a Brazilian forest. The permanent darkness of a cave in China. The deepest place on Earth.

Life has carved niches for itself in the most extreme and stunning habitats. As a result, it has taken on surprising -- and just plain weird -- physical attributes and behaviors.

In celebration of this biodiversity, the SUNY ...Read more

A California volcano once obliterated a forest and propelled ash 280 miles. Experts say it offers a warning

SAN FRANCISCO -- Lassen Peak had been rumbling for days. Glowing hot rocks bounded down the slopes. Lava was welling up into a freshly created crater.

Then, on this day 103 years ago, it exploded in a way California would never forget. It created a gigantic mushroom cloud that reached an altitude of 30,000 feet, could be seen as far away as ...Read more

Tech Q&A: How to rescue songs from an old iPhone

Q: I have an old iPhone 3GS that I use only for playing music obtained from a variety of sources. But the songs aren't backed up anywhere (when my new iPhone was synced with the PC, the PC's songs were accidentally erased). Now I'm worried that the 3GS battery is wearing out; it won't hold a full charge. Is there a safe way to move the songs ...Read more

Helpware: How to buy — and use — a new computer

Every three years or so I upgrade my computers. At least one of my kids is usually in dire need of a PC, so off the PCs go to new homes, where they serve honorably and trouble-free for years to come. I buy Apple and Dell computers. They've proved to be reliable, with the latest technology, which gives me bragging rights, as in "My new Dell has ...Read more

Stolen from another sun: This backward-traveling asteroid could be an interstellar space fossil

Scientists have discovered an immigrant in our midst: an asteroid near Jupiter's orbit that arrived from outside the solar system some 4.5 billion years ago.

The orbit of 2015 BZ509, described in a letter in the Monthly Notices of the Royal Astronomical Society, could offer a way for scientists to sample the contents of distant star systems.

"...Read more

ACLU asks Amazon to stop selling facial-recognition tools to governments

When the Washington County Sheriff's Office in Oregon started using Amazon's facial-recognition software in 2016, deputies welcomed a new tool to quickly identify suspects and solve cases.

The American Civil Liberties Union (ACLU) saw something different: a troubling extension of the government's ability to keep an eye on its citizens.

The ...Read more

Shoplifters meet their match as retailers deploy facial recognition cameras

WASHINGTON -- Shoplifters beware: Closed-circuit cameras in stores might be observing more than you think. As facial recognition software gets better, the battle against retail theft is moving into high tech.

Retail stores with facial recognition systems can spot convicted or admitted shoplifters in about the time it takes to walk two paces ...Read more

Wi-Fi in the road? Kansas City tech start-up is wiring pavement for safety — and fun

KANSAS CITY -- Self-driving cars have captured the limelight when it comes to how you'll get around in the future, but one Kansas City technology start-up is looking at the road itself.

Integrated Roadways is developing "smart pavement" technology that would not only help increase roadway safety but could also serve as the platform for Wi-Fi ...Read more

A little extra global warming will mean a lot more habitat loss for plants and animals, study says

What difference does half a degree Celsius of global warming make?

To many plants and animals, and especially insects, it could mean the difference between life and death, according to a new study.

In a paper published Thursday in Science, researchers report that limiting global warming to 1.5 degrees Celsius above the average pre-industrial ...Read more