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posted by janrinok on Tuesday June 08, @10:17PM   Printer-friendly [Skip to comment(s)]

FBI-controlled AN0M app ensnares scores of alleged criminals in global police sting:

On Tuesday, Australian police said they had carried out hundreds of search warrants in the past 24 hours and arrested 224 people, with simultaneous stings taking place in Europe and the United States. New Zealand police said they detained 35 people, including top members of criminal gangs.

For nearly three years, law enforcement officials have been sitting in the back pocket of some of the world's top alleged crime figures. Custom cellphones, bought on the black market and installed with the FBI-controlled platform, called AN0M, circulated and grew in popularity among criminals as high-profile crime identities vouched for its integrity.

The FBI in the past has dismantled encrypted platforms used by criminals to communicate, and infiltrated others. This operation saw the FBI create a closed encrypted app, AN0M, to fill the void and to target organized crime, drug trafficking and money laundering activities across the globe by monitoring people's communications about their criminal offending.

(...) The users believed their AN0M devices were secured by encryption. Rather, they were feeding criminal intelligence directly to law enforcement agents.

"Essentially, they have handcuffed each other by endorsing and trusting AN0M and openly communicating on it — not knowing we were watching the entire time," Australian Federal Police Commissioner Reece Kershaw said.

The global operation, known as Special Operation Ironside in Australia and Trojan Shield in the United States, has allegedly exposed criminals linked to South American drug cartels, Triad groups in Asia, and criminal syndicates based in the Middle East and Europe.

ANOM: Hundreds arrested in massive global crime sting using messaging app

More than 800 suspected criminals have been arrested worldwide after being tricked into using an FBI-run encrypted messaging app, officials say. The operation, jointly conceived by Australia and the FBI, saw devices with the ANOM app secretly distributed among criminals, allowing police to monitor their chats about drug smuggling, money laundering and even murder plots. Officials called it a watershed moment.

Targets included drug gangs and people with links to the mafia. Drugs, weapons, luxury vehicles and cash were also seized in the operation, which was conducted across more than a dozen countries. This included eight tons of cocaine, 250 guns and more than $48m (£34m) in various worldwide currencies and cryptocurrencies.

[...] The FBI began operating an encrypted device network called ANOM, and covertly distributed devices with the chat app among the criminal underworld via informants. The idea for the operation came after two other encrypted platforms were taken down by law enforcement agencies, leaving criminal gangs in the market for new secure phones. The devices were initially used by alleged senior crime figures, giving other criminals the confidence to use the platform.

Also at the Associated Press and The Guardian.

See also: Hakan Ayik: The man who accidentally helped FBI get in criminals' pockets

Australian police have told local media that the man who unwittingly helped to distribute the FBI-run encrypted messaging app was a fugitive named Hakan Ayik. Alleged to be a drugs kingpin himself, officials say Mr Ayik was identified as a key influencer and given access by undercover agents to a handset which he then recommended to other criminal associates. "He was identified because of his standing within the underworld," a senior investigator quoted by the Australian Telegraph said. "He was a primary target as someone who was trusted and was going to be able to successfully distribute this platform."

It is reported that he has been living abroad in Turkey for years and police have urged him to come forward for his own safety. "Given the threat he faces, he's best off handing himself into us as soon as he can," Australian Federal Police Commissioner Reece Kershaw said.


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posted by janrinok on Tuesday June 08, @07:45PM   Printer-friendly [Skip to comment(s)]
from the off-balance-Betteridge dept.

Is Earth's core lopsided? Strange goings-on in our planet's interior.:

For reasons unknown, Earth's solid-iron inner core is growing faster on one side than the other, and it has been ever since it started to freeze out from molten iron more than half a billion years ago, according to a new study by seismologists at the University of California, Berkeley.

The faster growth under Indonesia's Banda Sea hasn't left the core lopsided. Gravity evenly distributes the new growth — iron crystals that form as the molten iron cools — to maintain a spherical inner core that grows in radius by an average of 1 millimeter per year.

But the enhanced growth on one side suggests that something in Earth's outer core or mantle under Indonesia is removing heat from the inner core at a faster rate than on the opposite side, under Brazil. Quicker cooling on one side would accelerate iron crystallization and inner core growth on that side.

This has implications for Earth's magnetic field and its history, because convection in the outer core driven by release of heat from the inner core is what today drives the dynamo that generates the magnetic field that protects us from dangerous particles from the sun.

"We provide rather loose bounds on the age of the inner core — between half a billion and 1.5 billion years — that can be of help in the debate about how the magnetic field was generated prior to the existence of the solid inner core," said Barbara Romanowicz, UC Berkeley Professor of the Graduate School in the Department of Earth and Planetary Science and emeritus director of the Berkeley Seismological Laboratory (BSL). "We know the magnetic field already existed 3 billion years ago, so other processes must have driven convection in the outer core at that time."

(...) Asymmetric growth of the inner core explains a three-decade-old mystery — that the crystallized iron in the core seems to be preferentially aligned along the rotation axis of the earth, more so in the west than in the east, whereas one would expect the crystals to be randomly oriented.

Evidence for this alignment comes from measurements of the travel time of seismic waves from earthquakes through the inner core. Seismic waves travel faster in the direction of the north-south rotation axis than along the equator, an asymmetry that geologists attribute to iron crystals — which are asymmetric — having their long axes preferentially aligned along Earth's axis.

Journal Reference:
Daniel A. Frost, Marine Lasbleis, Brian Chandler, et al. Dynamic history of the inner core constrained by seismic anisotropy, Nature Geoscience (DOI: 10.1038/s41561-021-00761-w)

Also at Nature


Original Submission

posted by janrinok on Tuesday June 08, @05:05PM   Printer-friendly [Skip to comment(s)]

Justice Dept. Claws Back $2.3M Paid by Colonial Pipeline to Ransomware Gang

Justice Dept. Claws Back $2.3M Paid by Colonial Pipeline to Ransomware Gang:

The U.S. Departmentof Justice said today it has recovered $2.3 million worth of Bitcoin that Colonial Pipeline paid to ransomware extortionists last month. The funds had been sent to DarkSide, a ransomware-as-a-service syndicate that disbanded after a May 14 farewell message to affiliates saying its Internet servers and cryptocurrency stash were seized by unknown law enforcement entities.

On May 7, the DarkSide ransomware gang sprang its attack against Colonial, which ultimately paid 75 Bitcoin (~$4.4 million) to its tormentors. The company said the attackers only hit its business IT networks — not its pipeline security and safety systems — but that it shut the pipeline down anyway as a precaution [several publications noted Colonial shut down its pipeline because its billing system was impacted, and it had no way to get paid].

On or around May 14, the DarkSide representative on several Russian-language cybercrime forums posted a message saying the group was calling it quits.

"Servers were seized, money of advertisers and founders was transferred to an unknown account," read the farewell message. "Hosting support, apart from information 'at the request of law enforcement agencies,' does not provide any other information."

US Has Recovered Ransom Payment Made After Pipeline Hack - Times of India

US has recovered ransom payment made after pipeline hack - Times of India:

WASHINGTON: The Justice Department has recovered the majority of a multimillion-dollar ransom payment to hackers after a cyberattack that caused the operator of the nation's largest fuel pipeline to halt its operations last month, officials said Monday. The operation to recover the cryptocurrency from the Russia-based hacker group is the first undertaken by a specialized ransomware task force created by the Justice Department, and reflects what US officials say is an increasingly aggressive approach to deal with a ransomware threat that in the last month has targeted critical industries around the world. "By going after an entire ecosystem that fuels ransomware and digital currency, we will continue to use all of our tools and all of our resources to increase the costs and the consequences of ransomware attacks and other cyber-enabled attacks," Deputy Attorney General Lisa Monaco said Monday at a news conference announcing the operation.

Also at Washington Post, Threatpost


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posted by martyb on Tuesday June 08, @02:39PM   Printer-friendly [Skip to comment(s)]

Websites begin to work again after major breakage:

A major outage has affected a number of major websites including Amazon, Reddit and Twitch.

The UK government website - gov.uk - was also down as were the Financial Times, the Guardian and the New York Times.

Cloud computing provider Fastly, which underpins a lot of major websites, said it was behind the problems.

The firm said there were issues with its global content delivery network (CDN) and was implementing a fix.

In a statement, it said: "We identified a service configuration that triggered disruption across our POPs (points of presence) globally and have disabled that configuration.

"Our global network is coming back online."

[...] Fastly runs what is known as an "edge cloud", which is designed to speed up loading times for websites, as well as protect them from denial-of-service attacks and help them when traffic is peaking.

It currently looks as if the problems were localised, meaning specific locations across Europe and the US were affected.

Also at c|net


Original Submission

posted by mrpg on Tuesday June 08, @12:13PM   Printer-friendly [Skip to comment(s)]
from the what-about-aurora-australis? dept.

Physicists determine how auroras are created:

[...] In a new study, a team of physicists led by University of Iowa reports definitive evidence that the most brilliant auroras are produced by powerful electromagnetic waves during geomagnetic storms. The phenomena, known as Alfven waves, accelerate electrons toward Earth, causing the particles to produce the familiar atmospheric light show.

The study, published online June 7 in the journal Nature Communications, concludes a decades-long quest to demonstrate experimentally the physical mechanisms for the acceleration of electrons by Alfven waves under conditions corresponding to Earth's auroral magnetosphere.

"Measurements revealed this small population of electrons undergoes 'resonant acceleration' by the Alfven wave's electric field, similar to a surfer catching a wave and being continually accelerated as the surfer moves along with the wave," says Greg Howes, associate professor in the Department of Physics and Astronomy at Iowa and study co-author.

Journal Reference:
J. W. R. Schroeder, G. G. Howes, C. A. Kletzing, et al. Laboratory measurements of the physics of auroral electron acceleration by Alfvén waves [open], Nature Communications (DOI: 10.1038/s41467-021-23377-5)

Also at Nature


Original Submission

posted by mrpg on Tuesday June 08, @09:43AM   Printer-friendly [Skip to comment(s)]
from the cement-cements-cembalos dept.

Visualizing cement hydration on a molecular level:

The concrete world that surrounds us owes its shape and durability to chemical reactions that start when ordinary Portland cement is mixed with water. Now, MIT scientists have demonstrated a way to watch these reactions under real-world conditions, an advance that may help researchers find ways to make concrete more sustainable.

[...] Cement in concrete contributes about 8 percent of the world's total carbon dioxide emissions, rivaling the emissions produced by most individual countries. With a better understanding of cement chemistry, scientists could potentially "alter production or change ingredients so that concrete has less of an impact on emissions, or add ingredients that are capable of actively absorbing carbon dioxide," says Admir Masic, associate professor of civil and environmental engineering.

[...] Using Raman microspectroscopy, the MIT scientists observed a sample of ordinary Portland cement placed underwater without disturbing it or artificially stopping the hydration process, mimicking the real-world conditions of concrete use. In general, one of the hydration products, called portlandite, starts as a disordered phase, percolates throughout the material, and then crystallizes, the research team concluded.

Journal Reference:
Hyun-Chae Loh, Hee-Jeong Kim, Franz-Josef Ulm, et al. Time-Space-Resolved Chemical Deconvolution of Cementitious Colloidal Systems Using Raman Spectroscopy, Langmuir (DOI: 10.1021/acs.langmuir.1c00609)


Original Submission

posted by Fnord666 on Tuesday June 08, @07:15AM   Printer-friendly [Skip to comment(s)]
from the So-no-skinny-dipping? dept.

I first happened upon this marvel of engineering on this recent CNN Travel video story. Digging around the internet, I then found this late April story on CNN.

London's new see-through Sky Pool is first of its kind:

The Sky Pool is a 82-foot (25-meter) transparent swimming pool stretched between the 10th stories of two residential skyscrapers in southwest London's Nine Elms neighborhood -- and it's only open to the apartment complex's lucky residents[*].

[...] The pool was put through extensive strength testing at the Reynolds factory [in Colorado] before making its journey to the UK by road and sea. It was then lifted into place by a 750-tonne mobile crane, supported by a 50-tonne crane.

[...] "After a series of technical drawings and behavioral analyses, the dimensions of the pool were decided," says the Embassy Gardens website."

With sides 200 millimeters [(7.9 inches)] thick and 3.2 meters [(10.5 feet)] deep, and with a bottom 300 millimeters [(11.8 inches)] thick, the 50-tonne acrylic pool will span the 14 meters [46 feet] between the buildings, with steps and filtrations systems sitting either end, and five modes of lighting to add to the feeling of magic."

[...] "Once you swim off, you can look right down. It will be like flying," says Brian Eckersley, director of Eckersley O'Callaghan.

[*] a two-bedroom unit starts at just over £1 million (~$1.4 million).

Entry on Wikipedia.


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posted by chromas on Tuesday June 08, @04:44AM   Printer-friendly [Skip to comment(s)]
from the covfefid21 dept.

Imperial College London:

Coffee Wilt Disease is caused by a fungus that has led to devastating outbreaks since the 1920s in sub-Saharan Africa, and currently affects two of Africa’s most popular coffee varieties: Arabica and Robusta.

The new research shows that the fungus likely boosted its ability to infect coffee plants by acquiring genes from a closely related fungus, which causes wilt disease on a wide range of crops, including Panama disease in bananas.

[...] The team re-animated cryogenically frozen samples of the fungus that causes Coffee Wilt Disease. There have been two serious outbreaks of the disease, in the 1920s-1950s and between the 1990s-2000s, and it still causes damage. For example, in 2011, 55,000 Robusta coffee trees were killed by wilt in Tanzania, destroying 160T of coffee in the process – equivalent to over 22 million cups of coffee.

[...] In a secure lab at CABI, they re-awakened two strains from the original outbreak, collected in the 1950s and deposited into CABI’s collection, and two strains each from the two coffee-specific fungal strains, with the most recent from 2003. They then sequenced the genomes of the fungi and examined their DNA for evidence of changes that could have helped them infect these specific coffee varieties.

They discovered the newer, variety-specific fungi have larger genomes than the earlier strains, and they identified genes that could have helped the fungi overcome plants’ defences and survive within the plants to trigger disease.

These genes were also found to be highly similar to those found in a different, closely related fungus that affects over 120 different crops, including bananas in sub-Saharan Africa, causing Panama disease, which is currently devastating today’s most popular variety, the Cavendish banana.

While strains of this banana-infecting fungus are known to be able to swap genes, conferring the ability to infect new varieties, the potential transfer of their genes to a different species of fungi has not been seen before. However, the team note that the two species sometimes live in close proximity on the roots of coffee and banana plants, and so it is possible that the coffee fungus gained these advantageous genes from its normally banana-based neighbour.

Coffee and bananas are often grown together, as coffee plants like the shade provided by the taller banana plants. The researchers say their study could suggest not growing crops with closely related diseases together, like banana and coffee, could reduce the possibility of new strains of coffee-killing fungi evolving.

The researchers are now using the re-animated strains to infect coffee plants in the lab, in order to study exactly how the fungus infects the plant, potentially providing other ways to prevent the disease taking hold.

nothing like COVID gain of function research

Journal Reference:
D. Peck, R. W. Nowell, J. Flood, et al. Historical genomics reveals the evolutionary mechanisms behind multiple outbreaks of the host-specific coffee wilt pathogen Fusarium xylarioides, bioRxiv (DOI: 10.1101/2020.08.07.241695)


Original Submission

posted by martyb on Tuesday June 08, @02:17AM   Printer-friendly [Skip to comment(s)]

$1 billion piracy ruling could force ISPs to disconnect more Internet users:

A jury ruled in December 2019 that Cox must pay $1 billion in damages to the major record labels. Sony, Universal, and Warner had sued the cable ISP in 2018 in US District Court for the Eastern District of Virginia. A district judge upheld the verdict in January 2021, approving the $1 billion judgment and paving the way for to Cox appeal to the 4th Circuit.

[...] "The core question in this litigation is whether an Internet service provider (ISP) was sufficiently aggressive in terminating the accounts of thousands of subscribers, and if not, the consequences of that policy decision," the advocacy groups wrote in their court brief. "The district court's answer misconstrued the law, the actual relationship between ISPs and subscribers, and the public interest. Affirming it would have dangerous consequences far beyond this case."

Terminating Internet service "means withdrawing an essential tool for participation in daily life," and cutting off an account because of the actions of one user "potentially cuts off every household member or—in the case of a school, library, or business—every student, faculty member, patron, and employee who shares the Internet connection," they wrote. "And with little or no competition among broadband ISPs in many areas of the country, those users may have no other way to connect."

[...] "Even for residential accounts, the consequences of terminating Internet access will not be confined to individual repeat infringers," the filing also said. "In other file sharing cases, rightsholders have estimated that 30 percent of the names of account holders identified as infringers were not responsible for the alleged infringement."

[...] In its complaint against Cox, the record labels claimed that Cox "knowingly contributed to, and reaped substantial profits from, massive copyright infringement committed by thousands of its subscribers." The ISP "deliberately refused to take reasonable measures to curb its customers from using its Internet services to infringe on others' copyrights—even once Cox became aware of particular customers engaging in specific, repeated acts of infringement," they claimed.

Despite receiving "hundreds of thousands of statutory infringement notices" from record labels, "Cox unilaterally imposed an arbitrary cap on the number of infringement notices it would accept from copyright holders, thereby willfully blinding itself to any of its subscribers' infringements that exceeded its 'cap,'" the record labels also argued.

At trial, the record labels "presented to the jury a total of 10,017 copyrights that Defendants' subscribers allegedly infringed upon during the claim period" of February 2013 to November 2014, District Judge Liam O'Grady wrote when he approved the jury verdict. "The Court found during summary judgment proceedings that Plaintiffs owned all of the copyrights in suit within the meaning of the Copyright Act, and that Cox had sufficient knowledge of the alleged infringement to satisfy the knowledge element of the contributory infringement claim." The jury ultimately "returned a verdict holding Cox liable for both vicarious and contributory infringement of all 10,017 claimed works," and it awarded the plaintiffs statutory damages of $99,830.29 per work, for a total of $1 billion.

[...] In its complaint against Cox, the record labels claimed that Cox "knowingly contributed to, and reaped substantial profits from, massive copyright infringement committed by thousands of its subscribers." The ISP "deliberately refused to take reasonable measures to curb its customers from using its Internet services to infringe on others' copyrights—even once Cox became aware of particular customers engaging in specific, repeated acts of infringement," they claimed.

Despite receiving "hundreds of thousands of statutory infringement notices" from record labels, "Cox unilaterally imposed an arbitrary cap on the number of infringement notices it would accept from copyright holders, thereby willfully blinding itself to any of its subscribers' infringements that exceeded its 'cap,'" the record labels also argued.

At trial, the record labels "presented to the jury a total of 10,017 copyrights that Defendants' subscribers allegedly infringed upon during the claim period" of February 2013 to November 2014, District Judge Liam O'Grady wrote when he approved the jury verdict. "The Court found during summary judgment proceedings that Plaintiffs owned all of the copyrights in suit within the meaning of the Copyright Act, and that Cox had sufficient knowledge of the alleged infringement to satisfy the knowledge element of the contributory infringement claim." The jury ultimately "returned a verdict holding Cox liable for both vicarious and contributory infringement of all 10,017 claimed works," and it awarded the plaintiffs statutory damages of $99,830.29 per work, for a total of $1 billion.


Original Submission

posted by Fnord666 on Monday June 07, @11:41PM   Printer-friendly [Skip to comment(s)]
from the speedy-delivery dept.

https://arstechnica.com/science/2021/06/the-military-wants-to-use-rockets-for-cargo-delivery-anywhere-on-earth/

The Air Force confirmed a strong interest in delivery of cargo around the world—by rockets—during an hourlong conference call with reporters on Friday. Military officials said they were elevating the cargo initiative to become the newest "Vanguard Program," indicating a desire to move the concept from an experimental state into an operational capability.

"This idea has been around since the dawn of spaceflight," said Dr. Greg Spanjers, an Air Force scientist and the Rocket Cargo Program Manager. "It's always been an intriguing idea. We've looked at it about every 10 years, but it's never really made sense. The reason we're doing it now is because it looks like technology may have caught up with a good idea."

Ars first reported about the "Rocket Cargo" program in the Air Force's budget request on Monday. As part of its $200 billion annual budget, the Air Force is seeking $47.9 million to leverage emerging commercial rocket capabilities to launch cargo from one location and land elsewhere on Earth.

During Friday's call, the officials explained what they're looking for in more depth. "Fundamentally, a rocket can get around the world in 90 minutes, and an airplane cannot," Spanjers said.

Previously:
The US Military is Starting to Get Really Interested in Starship


Original Submission

posted by martyb on Monday June 07, @09:09PM   Printer-friendly [Skip to comment(s)]

Jeff Bezos says he will fly into space next month

Amazon founder Jeff Bezos has revealed on Instagram that he plans to fly on Blue Origin's first human spaceflight next month.

"I want to go on this flight because it's a thing I've wanted to do all my life," Bezos, the richest person in the world, said in a post published Monday morning. "It's an adventure. It's a big deal for me."

Bezos said he invited his younger brother, Mark, whom he described as his best friend, to go along. The two brothers will join the winner of an auction for a third seat on the flight, which is set to take place on July 20 of this year. Bidding for this seat is already at $2.8 million but is likely to go higher during a live auction on July 12. Proceeds from this auction will be donated to Blue Origin's foundation, Club for the Future.

[...] Now, Bezos may not be bringing his mom on the first human flight of the vehicle—but he will be bringing a family member. This speaks to the company's, and his, confidence in the safety of New Shepard. After this mission, Blue Origin is expected to begin flying other passengers on future flights later this year. The company has not yet set a public price for tickets inside the capsule, which can carry as many as six people.


Original Submission

posted by janrinok on Monday June 07, @06:38PM   Printer-friendly [Skip to comment(s)]

Electric Car Batteries Are Turning This Country Into an Actual Hellscape:

As the demand for gadgets and electric cars grows, so too are the mining operations that dig up cobalt to use in lithium-ion batteries.

And that's become a serious problem for the Democratic Republic of the Congo, The New Yorker reports, which sits atop about 3.4 million metric tons of the stuff — half of the entire planet's supply. A massive, gold rush-like mining industry was born after residents in poverty-stricken areas discovered ore deposits under their homes. But now, many are finding that digging up the valuable mineral has failed to lift them out of poverty. And meanwhile, dangerous conditions are killing miners as exposure to the metal is poisoning both people and the environment.

A lack of regulations and enforcement over the mines has resulted in the miners, who risk their health and safety for financial security, being exploited by officials and traders who are unscrupulously lining their own pockets, according to The New Yorker. One miner told the publication that he now struggles to pay his $25 monthly rent even as the value of cobalt continues to soar — and the only alternative was to work at a major corporation's mine for considerably less money.

Meanwhile, thousands of children have been put to work as well, according to The New Yorker, some of whom say they can't remember the last time they could afford a meal. In order to keep them working, the kids are often even drugged with appetite suppressors.


Original Submission

posted by janrinok on Monday June 07, @04:05PM   Printer-friendly [Skip to comment(s)]
from the so-they-say dept.

Microsoft Teams calls are getting end-to-end encryption in July:

Microsoft Teams is getting better security and privacy next month with the addition of end-to-end encrypted 1:1 voice calls.

While Microsoft Teams already encrypts data at rest and in transit, it allows administrators to configure automatic recording and transcription of voice calls.

Due to this, Microsoft Teams calls are not suitable for sharing very sensitive information that should remain private between two individuals.

Starting in July, Microsoft Teams is getting end-to-end encryption for 1:1 VoIP calls so that their discussions remain entirely private.


Original Submission

posted by janrinok on Monday June 07, @01:30PM   Printer-friendly [Skip to comment(s)]
from the get-a-life dept.

Genetic tricks of the longest-lived animals:

Life, for most of us, ends far too soon—hence the effort by biomedical researchers to find ways to delay the aging process and extend our stay on Earth. But there's a paradox at the heart of the science of aging: The vast majority of research focuses on fruit flies, nematode worms and laboratory mice, because they're easy to work with and lots of genetic tools are available. And yet, a major reason that geneticists chose these species in the first place is because they have short lifespans. In effect, we've been learning about longevity from organisms that are the least successful at the game.

Today, a small number of researchers are taking a different approach and studying unusually long-lived creatures—ones that, for whatever evolutionary reasons, have been imbued with lifespans far longer than other creatures they're closely related to. The hope is that by exploring and understanding the genes and biochemical pathways that impart long life, researchers may ultimately uncover tricks that can extend our own lifespans, too.

Everyone has a rough idea of what aging is, just from experiencing it as it happens to themselves and others. Our skin sags, our hair goes gray, joints stiffen and creak—all signs that our components—that is, proteins and other biomolecules—aren't what they used to be. As a result, we're more prone to chronic diseases such as cancer, Alzheimer's and diabetes—and the older we get, the more likely we are to die each year. "You live, and by living you produce negative consequences like molecular damage. This damage accumulates over time," says Vadim Gladyshev, who researches aging at Harvard Medical School. "In essence, this is aging."

This happens faster for some species than others, though—the clearest pattern is that bigger animals tend to live longer lives than smaller ones. But even after accounting for size, huge differences in longevity remain. A house mouse lives just two or three years, while the naked mole rat, a similar-sized rodent, lives more than 35. Bowhead whales are enormous—the second-largest living mammal—but their 200-year lifespan is at least double what you'd expect given their size. Humans, too, are outliers: We live twice as long as our closest relatives, the chimpanzees.

Perhaps the most remarkable animal Methuselahs are among bats. One individual of Myotis brandtii, a small bat about a third the size of a mouse, was recaptured, still hale and hearty, 41 years after it was initially banded. That is especially amazing for an animal living in the wild, says Emma Teeling, a bat evolutionary biologist at University College Dublin who coauthored a review exploring the value of bats in studying aging in the 2018 Annual Review of Animal Biosciences. "It's equivalent to about 240 to 280 human years, with little to no sign of aging," she says. "So bats are extraordinary. The question is, Why?"

Journal References:
1.) Sarah J. Mitchell, Morten Scheibye-Knudsen, Dan L. Longo, et al. Animal Models of Aging Research: Implications for Human Aging and Age-Related Diseases*, (DOI: 10.1146/annurev-animal-022114-110829)
2.) Emma C. Teeling, Sonja C. Vernes, Liliana M. Dávalos, et al. Bat Biology, Genomes, and the Bat1K Project: To Generate Chromosome-Level Genomes for All Living Bat Species, (DOI: 10.1146/annurev-animal-022516-022811)
Zhonghe Ke, Pramit Mallik, Adam B. Johnson, et al. Translation fidelity coevolves with longevity [open], Aging Cell (DOI: 10.1111/acel.12628)


Original Submission

posted by Fnord666 on Monday June 07, @09:32AM   Printer-friendly [Skip to comment(s)]
from the cuckoo-watch dept.

Do Wristwatches Get Any Better than a Cuckoo Clock?:

There are few better ways of asserting your independent spirit as a hardware hacker than by creating your own special timepiece. Even more so if the timepiece is a watch, particularly in this era of smartwatches. Few home-made timepieces though have come as near to wristwatch Nirvana as the cuckoo clock wristwatch from [Kiyotaka Akasaka], which we would venture to name as having won wristwatches. Nobody will top this one in the field of home-made clocks!

There is a short (35 second) video of it on YouTube.

What's the most unusual timepiece you've ever seen? Worn? Do you have a favorite?

My favorite is a Seiko Titanium Grand Sport that I bought about 15 years ago. It's not that unusual, but it is amazingly light-weight. It's a little small at 38mm but that size is fine for me.


Original Submission

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