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- North Korea Canceled a Planned Meeting With Mike Pence at the Last Minute, U.S. Says
- NASA warns that Jupiter’s Great Red Spot could be about to disappear
- At Least 5 People Have Been Charged With Copycat Threats Since the Florida School Shooting
- Volcanic blast reshaped summit of Indonesia's Mount Sinabung
- Ancient Mayan bones uncovered in Mexico at world's largest underwater cave
Archaeologists exploring the world's biggest flooded cave in Mexico have discovered ancient human remains at least 9,000 years old and the bones of animals who roamed the earth during the last Ice Age. A group of divers recently connected two underwater caverns in eastern Mexico to reveal what is believed to be the biggest flooded cave on the planet, a discovery that could help shed new light on the ancient Maya civilization. The Yucatan peninsula is studded with monumental relics of the Maya people, whose cities drew upon an extensive network of sinkholes linked to subterranean waters known as cenotes. Researchers say they found 248 cenotes at the 347-km (216-mile) cave system known as Sac Actun, near the beach resort of Tulum. Of the 200 archaeological sites they have discovered there, around 140 are Mayan. This mask of the Mayan god of trade is just one of the artefacts uncovered at the huge underwater Sac Actun cave in Quinta Roo state, Mexico Credit: HO/AFP Some cenotes acquired particular religious significance to the Maya, whose descendants continue to inhabit the region. Apart from human remains, they also found bones of giant sloths, ancient elephants and extinct bears from the Pleistocene period, Mexico's Culture Ministry said in a statement. Sistema Sac Actun The cave's discovery has rocked the archaeological world. "I think it's overwhelming. Without a doubt it's the most important underwater archaeological site in the world," said Guillermo de Anda, researcher at Mexico's National Anthropology and History Institute (INAH). A diver from the Great Mayan Aquifer project looks at human remains believed to be from the Pleistocene era De Anda is also director of the Gran Acuifero Maya (GAM), a project dedicated to the study and preservation of the subterranean waters of the Yucatan peninsula. According to the INAH, water levels rose 100 meters at the end of the Ice Age, flooding the cave system and leading to "ideal conditions for the preservation of the remains of extinct megafauna from the Pleistocene." The Pleistocene geological epoch, the most recent Ice Age, began 2.6 million years ago and ended around 11,700 years ago. Divers from the Great Mayan Aquifer project combing through the caves have found cultural artefacts, 9,000 year old human remains and Pleistocene bones Credit: Jan Arild Aaserud/INAH
- Top experts warn against 'malicious use' of AI
Artificial intelligence could be deployed by dictators, criminals and terrorists to manipulate elections and use drones in terrorist attacks, more than two dozen experts said Wednesday as they sounded the alarm over misuse of the technology. In a 100-page analysis, they outlined a rapid growth in cybercrime and the use of "bots" to interfere with news gathering and penetrate social media among a host of plausible scenarios in the next five to 10 years. "Our report focuses on ways in which people could do deliberate harm with AI," said Sean O hEigeartaigh, Executive Director of the Cambridge Centre for the Study of Existential Risk.
- President Trump Tweeted He's Been Tougher on Russia Than Obama. That's Not True
- Man-made star which looks like a giant disco ball is visible over Britain this week
- A U.S. Postal Worker Has Been Found Fatally Shot Inside a Mail Truck in Texas
- Some fear California drought cuts could erase water rights
SACRAMENTO, Calif. (AP) — A proposal to make California's drought-era water restrictions permanent could allow the state to chip away at long-held water rights in an unprecedented power grab, representatives from water districts and other users told regulators Tuesday.
- Elderly Who Stay Sharp into Old Age Smoke, Drink and Think Positively
At an annual meeting of the American Association for the Advancement of Science in Austin, Texas last weekend, scientists from across the country came together to discuss their latest findings on the brains of super-agers, Science Alert reported. Super-agers are a small demographic of the elderly population that retain cognition on par with their far younger counterparts, sometimes up until the day that they die. “It’s not so long ago that we thought the only trajectory there was was to get old and senile,” said Emily Rogalski, from Northwestern University, at the annual meeting, The Guardian reported.
- Now there's a game you can play to 'vaccinate' yourself against fake news
- The 10,000-Year Clock Being Built in a Mountain
- The Trump Administration Will Look Into Banning Bump Stocks
- Uber is temporarily pulling out of Morocco
Morocco has become the latest country where Uber’s plans for world domination has been halted by local regulation. In a statement, the ride-hailing giant has announced that it will temporarily shutter operations in Casablanca this week given the lack of “clarity about integrating applications like Uber into the existing transport model.” Uber launched in Casablanca,…
- Japanese Man Granted Sole Custody of 13 Children He Fathered With Thai Surrogate Mothers
- EU nations should seize chance to boost renewable energy: study
EU member states should take advantage of falling costs for renewable energy to invest more in the sector and make it account for a third of total energy output by 2030, an new report said Tuesday. The International Renewable Energy Agency (IRENA) study said the European Union could make renewables account for 34 percent of total production by 2030, up from the current target of 27 percent and twice what it was in 2016. EU energy commissioner Miguel Arias Cañete welcomed the EU-commissioned report's timing, which coincides with decreases in costs for solar and wind power.
- Explaining coprophagy – why do dogs eat their own poo?
- Donald Trump Jr. Arrives in India to Promote Trump-Branded Luxury Apartments
- Ex-Workers at Russian Troll Factory Say Mueller Indictments Are True
- NASA's $1 Billion Mobile Launcher Leans a Little
- The Olympics Brought North and South Korea Together. But Hope for a Unified Korea Is 'Withering Away'
- New dinosaurs are being discovered in record numbers, and it’s changing everything we thought we knew
Every kid grows up loving dinosaurs. As we grow older we listen to science teachers explain how dinosaurs lived and died, we watch documentaries about the age when reptiles ruled the land, and by the time we reach adulthood most of us like to think we have a pretty good handle on what things were like millions and millions of years ago. A new study focusing on the frequency of fresh dinosaur discoveries suggests we might have it all wrong, and that our understanding of the hundreds of millions of years that preceded humanity's takeover of the planet could change dramatically over the next decade or two.
All we know about the history of the dinosaurs is what we're able to piece together from the remains they left behind. We have bones and tracks and that's about it. Working with that sparse evidence has always been a challenge for paleontologists, but the frequency with which new dinosaurs are being discovered has spiked dramatically in just the past twenty years or so. Those new discoveries are constantly changing what we thought we knew about prehistoric life, and it won't be long before we look back on previous assumptions and find how misguided those guesses were.
"It’s a nice little paper that shows that in the last 20 years, the number of dinosaur genera named, as well as the number of specimens of those genera, has increased greatly," Jonathan P. Tennant, co-author of the work, explains. "This has profound impacts on our understanding of dinosaur diversity, especially as these discoveries are unevenly spread over time and space. There are still huge gaps in our knowledge of the fossil record, and areas in space and geological time where the rapid pace of discovery is changing much of what we thought we knew about dinosaurs."
You don't have to look far to find examples of how an increase in dinosaur discoveries has shifted our knowledge. A few decades ago, the idea that some land-dwelling dinosaur species were covered in feathers was laughable at best. Crafty hunters like the velociraptors in Jurassic Park are depicted as leathery beasts, but we now know that the creatures were largely covered in plumage. Likewise, the mighty Tyrannosaurus rex was long thought to be the ultimate predator, but more recent discoveries have suggested it may have also been a scavenger, feasting on already-dead carcasses rather than hunting for a fresh feast when it was hungry.
There's no telling what discoveries lie under the next rock, but scientists are painting a prehistoric picture faster and with more detail than ever before, and it's quite exciting.
- Prince William Is Looking for Adventure on a Motorcycle Because Future Kings Can Have Fun Too
- Here's How Internet Darlings Tessa Virtue and Scott Moir Respond to Those Relationship Theories
- Why Kids Are Afraid Of Everything, And How To Help
Scientists have been trying to unlock the mysteries of fear for decades. Is fear nature or nurture? At what age do kids become afraid of the dark? Why are infants afraid of slithering reptiles they’ve never before encountered? To answer these questions, researchers have used some pretty out-there methods. Think terrifying babies with pictures of... View Article The post Why Kids Are Afraid Of Everything, And How To Help appeared first on Fatherly.
- Even Light Exercise Can Help You Live Longer
- Plants Appeared on Land 100 Million Years Earlier Than Scientists Thought
Plants grew on land 100 million years earlier than scientists previously thought, new research suggests, pushing our understanding of life on Earth and even climate change back in time. This colonization had major implications from plant life to the makeup of the Earth's atmosphere itself. “Previous attempts to model these changes in the atmosphere have accepted the plant fossil record at face value,” Jennifer Morris from the University of Bristol, U.K., and co-lead author on the study, explained in a statement.
- Infrasound microphones could predict volcano eruptions before they strike
- The Selfie Olympics Are Making a Hilarious Comeback for the 2018 Winter Games
- There’s something wrong with NASA’s Mars Reconnaissance Orbiter
NASA has had an incredible streak of good luck as of late with spacecraft that have far outlived their expectations. Cassini at Saturn, the Opportunity rover on Mars, and several other pieces of high-tech space hardware have performed for much longer than was initially expected of them. Unfortunately, the Mars Reconnaissance Orbiter, which was launched in 2005 and has delivered more data on the Red Planet than any other Mars mission, is starting to cause some headaches.
According to NASA's Jet Propulsion Laboratory, the spacecraft has been put into "precautionary standby status" after it alerted its handlers of low battery voltage. The craft is equipped with solar panels that power its instruments, but when it swings to the dark side of the planet it relies on rechargeable batteries to keep it up and running. Now, NASA has to figure out exactly what is wrong, and do so from over 30 million miles away.
"We're in the diagnostic stage, to better understand the behavior of the batteries and ways to give ourselves more options for managing them in the future," MRO Project Manager Dan Johnston explains. "We will restore MRO's service as a relay for other missions as soon as we can do so with confidence in spacecraft safety, likely in about one week. After that, we will resume science observations."
NASA is optimistic that they can iron out whatever issues are leading to the spacecraft's battery woes, but it's not exactly shocking that the hardware is having problems when you consider its age. Launching in 2005, the Mars Reconnaissance Orbit was slated to have a two-year mission window which it completed with flying colors. Following that success, NASA has issues extended missions five times, allowing the orbiter to continue gathering and relaying a treasure trove of data about the planet. According to NASA, the MRO has delivered over 317 terabits of data thus far, which is more than all other Mars mission combined.
In just a couple of years, NASA is slated to launch its Mars 2020 mission which will feature the delivery of a new rover to the Red Planet. The rover will be a cutting-edge piece of scientific hardware capable of making advanced observations about the composition of the Martian surface.
- Grey's Anatomy May Be Giving You the Wrong Ideas About Medicine, Study Says
- The Bachelor Recap: It's Time for Hometown Dates