Vienna, VA.-based Space Adventures said Wednesday that it's booked two added passenger seats for orbital flights on the Russian Soyuz rocket in the coming years, upping its commitment in the tourist spaceflight market. The company, which was the first to send a private citizen into space on the Soyuz, said that because of consumer demand, it has reserved two commercial seats on flights in fall 2008 and spring 2009, under contract with the Federal Space Agency of the Russian Federation. And Space Adventures is negotiating terms for flights in 2010 and beyond. (Previously, it has sent one tourist … Read more
LAS VEGAS--I'm never surprised when I visit Sin City and find that the hotels here have come up with new and innovative ways to get my--and your--money.
But when I arrived here late Tuesday night for the first real stop on my Road Trip 2007 around the Southwest, I discovered a new one--new, at least, to me--that make me blink.
I've stayed in a million hotels and motels in the last few years, and even a few in Vegas. And in many places, I've used the in-room fridge to store a couple of drinks I brought in … Read more
If Spider-Man were to head into outer space, he'd probably want a BioSuit.
The prototype space suit is under development at MIT, under the direction of Dava Newman, a professor of aeronautics and astronautics and engineering systems. It's a long-term project--the unitardlike outfit has been under development for seven years, and Newman figures the BioSuit crew has another decade to go, as NASA inches forward with its plans to send people to Mars.
Traditional orbital outerwear, like the Extravehicular Mobility Unit worn by astronauts when they venture outside the space station, gets its bulk in part from gas … Read more
Paul Horn, the director of IBM Research for the past 11 years, is stepping aside to take an academic scientist position at New York University. He will be replaced by John Kelly, IBM's senior vice president of technology and intellectual property.
Horn's tenure at IBM Research is marked by technology accomplishments--including when IBM's Deep Blue computer beat former chess champion Garry Kasparov--and a sharper commercial orientation of IBM's vaunted labs.
During his time there, Horn, 60, sought to connect IBM researchers with customers and partners. As IBM began making a growing portion of its revenue from … Read more
Why be a fish swimming upstream?
Keith Perry, CEO of Sears Methodist Retirement Services of Texas, didn't want to be that fish.
Because approximately 90 percent of seniors want to remain in their home, Perry questioned the merits of increasing the number of retirement centers, which cost about $55 million each.
"Maybe I have this all wrong," Perry recounted during a panel discussion on how senior-service providers are changing their business models. The panel, which met on Monday, was part of the fourth annual Healthcare Unbound conference under way this week in San Francisco.
And, so, 18 … Read more
Once again, the top dog among robotic subs is a Gator.
There aren't many details to offer just yet on how Sunday's finals went. So far, it's just the Gators and the Proteus team from Cornell University that have posted brief notes on who won. Cornell reports that it finished fourth overall, behind Florida, the University of Rhode Island's (Ram-boat 8) and Montreal's Ecole de Technologie Superieure (… Read more
For those who envision evolution creeping along only on glacial time scales, let this be a lesson.
Researchers at the University of California at Berkeley and elsewhere have documented the super-swift recovery of tropical Hypolimnas bolina butterflies, also called blue moon or great eggfly butterflies, from the onslaught of a bacteria that killed only males. The bacteria had reduced the male population to about 1 percent of the overall species, but within 10 generations over less than a year in 2006, the males had recovered to 39 percent of the population, according to the researchers.
"To my knowledge, this … Read more
Here's a great idea for anyone who's wondered about chocolate but is still waiting for Mark Kurlansky to publish a book on it.
The Chocolate Manufacturers Association, a club whose members include Nestle and The Hershey Co., is offering everything you need to host a proper chocolate tasting online.
Why should wine, cheese, bread and olives get all the kudos?
Aside from offering trivia of the sort found on many food-organization Web sites, the CMA has posted Webcasts of the tastings and lectures it hosts for the industry professionals who buy chocolate in bulk. There is also a … Read more
Collegiate teams from around the country--and a few from abroad--are arriving in San Diego for a competition to see who has the best robotic sub.
Wednesday is the check-in and orientation day for teams entered in the 10th annual Autonomous Underwater Vehicle Competition, put on by the Association for Unmanned Vehicle Systems International and the Office of Naval Research. Then come several days of in-water practice and qualifying runs, with the finals scheduled for Sunday.
The gist of the challenge is this: the robot vessels have to navigate their way across a large pool following a set course. They must … Read more
The United Nations and a group of U.S. organizations including Microsoft are working together to bring the latest medical information to health professionals in poor countries free via the Internet, according to a report in the Chronicle of Higher Education.
The U.N. and librarians from Yale and Cornell Universities have teamed up with journal publishers to create the Internet service, which will help hospitals in developing countries gain access to otherwise expensive articles and research on medicine. (The project is run by the U.N.'s Health InterNetwork Access to Research Initiative, among other U.N. groups.) Microsoft … Read more