Study may explain the extended solar minimum

first_img The solar minimum at the end of each 11-year solar cycle is characterized by a reduction in the number of sunspots, flares, and other solar activity. The most recent, from 2008 to the beginning of 2009, lasted fifteen months longer than expected.The study used 13 years’ worth of results from SOHO, the Solar and Heliospheric Observatory, which was launched jointly by the European Space Angency and NASA. Among the data gathered by SOHO are measurements of the ionized gases moving from the sun’s equator to the poles in what is known as the meridional flow. The scientists then tried to correlate the flow with variations in the sunspot cycle.The researchers, Lisa Rightmire of the University of Memphis, Tennessee, and David Hathaway of the Marshall Space Flight Center in Huntsville, Alabama, found the normally slow meridional flows started to speed up a few years before 2008, when the number of sunspots declined. In the previous solar minimum the speed was around 30 kph, but in 2008-9 was about 47 kph. The scientists suggest the solar minimum was longer than usual because the magnetic fields produced by the gas flows at the poles were weaker, but it is not known why the speed of the meridional flow increased.Hathaway said the meridional flow carries with it magnetic fields that oppose the flows of strongly magnetized material on the solar surface. When the meriodional flow is faster the opposition to the other flows is greater and the polar magnetic field cannot become as strong as it otherwise would, and this may have delayed the start of the current solar cycle that began in 2009. Hathaway said the strength of the magnetic flow at the poles is critical since the magnetic fields fall below the surface and set up the conditions for sunspots, and when the fields are weaker they take longer to reach the required strength to produce sunspots. Hathaway and Rightmire also predict the current solar cycle is likely to have less solar activity than the previous cycle.The results of the study, published in Science, may improve the forecasting of the duration and intensity of solar cycles in the future, and this could be valuable since some solar activity can create magnetized clouds of charged particles that can damage orbiting satellites and disrupt power grids on Earth. Improved predictions of solar cycles could also help climate scientists with their long-term predictions. The results also suggest that models predicting that a fast meridional flow would lead to a stronger magnetic field at the poles, may have to be revised. Explore further Ulysses Flyby of the Sun’s North Pole More information: Variations in the Sun’s Meridional Flow over a Solar Cycle, David H. Hathaway and Lisa Rightmire, Science 12 March 2010: Vol. 327. no. 5971, pp. 1350 – 1352, DOI:10.1126/science.1181990 The Sun’s “Great Conveyor Belt.” The Great Conveyor Belt is a massive circulating current of fire (hot plasma) within the Sun. It has two branches, north and south, each taking about 40 years to perform one complete circuit. Researchers believe the turning of the belt controls the sunspot cycle. Image credit: NASA © 2010 Citation: Study may explain the extended solar minimum (2010, March 15) retrieved 18 August 2019 from ( — The recent solar minimum extended fifteen months longer than predicted, and a new study may explain why, and improve the predictions for future solar cycles. This document is subject to copyright. Apart from any fair dealing for the purpose of private study or research, no part may be reproduced without the written permission. The content is provided for information purposes only.last_img read more

Delayed legacy of invasive species

first_img Governments everywhere have begun to realize the undesirable effects of introducing non-native species, but many of the species causing problems today were introduced many decades ago. To study the problem the researchers, from a range of agencies and universities in Austria, the Czech Republic, Germany, Italy, and elsewhere, looked at data on over 3,300 invasive species in 28 European countries. The species were representatives of 10 taxonomic groups and included mammals, amphibians, birds, reptiles, fish, plants, insects, and fungi, and included species such as Canadian Geese, American Ragweed, and Japanese Deer.Individual countries in Europe have not seen the same rate of development and population growth in the last century, and the differences allowed the researchers to determine if the lag times between introduction of species and their establishment were related to socioeconomic factors. What they found was that the current numbers of alien species now established in the wild are more closely related to socioeconomic indicators such as population density, per capita gross domestic product (GDP) and level of exports of the year 1900 than to those of 2000. The researchers also found it could take decades before it became clear which species would become disruptive. The association with 1900 socioeconomic indicators was less prominent in birds, reptiles and insects that are able to disperse and colonize new areas more rapidly, but for the majority of groups the results suggested a “considerable historical legacy.”The authors speculate that the level of socioeconomic activity in a country could affect the success of an alien species through deliberate introduction efforts, but more importantly through expansions of roads and human population centers, and the conversion of natural habitats into agricultural land, which has already been shown to foster the spread and naturalization of alien species. Per capita GDP may correlate with rates of introduction.The results suggest that the effects on invasive species of the current high levels of socioeconomic activity will not be completely felt for several decades. The researchers described the delay as an “invasion debt” and said that even with existing trade and biosecurity regulations, “the seeds of future invasion problems have already been sown.” They recommended introduced species that were currently not causing problems but had been seen to be invasive elsewhere should be more strictly controlled.The scientists warned further introductions of alien species could have greater impacts on biodiversity and the economy than previously thought. They also said the threat from invasive species is among the major causes of biodiversity loss, along with habitat fragmentation and destruction. The problems are estimated to be costing $16 billion a year in Europe.The paper is published online in the US Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences (PNAS). ( — A team of researchers in Europe has urged governments to introduce tougher controls of all international trade that could result in the introduction of non-native species. They say the full impact of alien species may not be evident for decades because they may co-exist with native species for a long time before becoming invasive. Globalization burdens future generations with biological invasions More information: Socioeconomic legacy yields an invasion debt, Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences Published online before print December 20, 2010, doi:10.1073/pnas.1011728108 Citation: Delayed legacy of invasive species (2010, December 22) retrieved 18 August 2019 from Explore further © 2010 This document is subject to copyright. Apart from any fair dealing for the purpose of private study or research, no part may be reproduced without the written permission. The content is provided for information purposes only. Canada goose. Image credit: Wikipedia.last_img read more

Tidal tails detected around a distant globular cluster

first_img This document is subject to copyright. Apart from any fair dealing for the purpose of private study or research, no part may be reproduced without the written permission. The content is provided for information purposes only. More information: The discovery of tidal tails around the globular cluster NGC 7492 with Pan-STARRS1, arXiv:1705.04324 [astro-ph.GA] report the discovery of tidal tails around the Galactic globular cluster NGC 7492, based on the Data Release 1 of the Pan-STARRS 1 survey. The tails were detected with a version of the matched filter technique applied to the (g−r,r) and (g−i,i) color-magnitude diagrams. Tidal tails emerging from the cluster extend at least ∼3.5 degrees in the North-East to South-East direction, equivalent to ∼1.5 kpc in projected length. Tidal tails are thin, elongated regions of stars and interstellar gas extending into space. They are formed as a result of gravitational interactions between galaxies and star clusters. Studying tidal tails offers clues on the tides experienced by the cluster and its internal dynamics. Such studies can also reveal essential information about the evolution of a cluster and could shed new light on the lumpiness of dark matter distribution in a galaxy.To date, only a handful of clusters with tidal tails have been detected in the Milky Way galaxy. Seeking more examples of such clusters, a team of researchers led by Camila Navarrete of the Pontifical Catholic University of Chile searched for the presence of stellar tails around globular clusters located within the footprint of the Pan-STARRS1 (PS1) 3Pi survey. The survey offers multi-band, multi-epoch, precise photometry across much of the sky.By analyzing the data provided by the first telescope of the Panoramic Survey Telescope and Rapid Response System (Pan-STARRS) program, located on Haleakala, Maui, Hawaii, the team found that a globular cluster, designated NGC 7492, has the features they were looking for. Located some 86,000 light years away from the Earth, NGC 7492 is a sparse outer-halo galactic globular cluster discovered by William Herschel in 1786. The presence of extra-tidal stellar material was suggested by previous studies and has been recently confirmed by Navarrete’s team.”We report the discovery of tidal tails around the galactic globular cluster NGC 7492, based on the Data Release 1 of the Pan-STARRS 1 survey,” the astronomers wrote in the paper.According to the study, NGC 7492 exhibits two tidal tails on either side of the cluster. These features extend in the north-south direction over approximately 3.5 degrees, which corresponds to about 4,900 light years in projected length. The authors noted that the newly detected structure resembles the characteristic “S-shaped” tidal feature found around other disrupting globular clusters, like Pal 5 and NGC 5466.Pan-STARRS observations also revealed the positions of Blue Horizontal Branch (BHB) candidate stars in the cluster. The team found that despite their overall low number density, BHBs appear to follow NGC 7492’s Northern tail, connecting its uppermost tip with the cluster itself. However, there is an observable lack of the BHB candidates on the other side of the cluster.”This perhaps is not surprising, given the low number of BHB stars expected in a given stellar population. While the spatial distribution of the possible BHB candidates is suggestive, deeper wide imaging is required to confirm (and perhaps extend) the discovery presented here,” the team concluded. Two of Milky Way’s globular clusters found to have halo stars Left: Number density of galaxies around the NGC 7492 globular cluster. Right: E(B − V ) extinction around the cluster. Credit: Navarrete et al., 2017. Explore further (—Astronomers have found tidal tails around a distant globular cluster known as NGC 7492. The newly discovered features could provide important information about the nature of globular clusters. The findings were presented in a paper published May. 11 on the arXiv preprint repository. Citation: Tidal tails detected around a distant globular cluster (2017, May 22) retrieved 18 August 2019 from © 2017 Phys.orglast_img read more

An elegant way to watch the FIFA World Cup

first_imgThe FIFA World Cup will be starting shortly. Looking forward for this extravanganza Shangri-la’s – Eros Hotel gives all the football enthusiasts a chance to  experience the thrill by screening the live matches at the Island Bar  through wide-screen televisions and surround sound stereos in the comfort of plush surroundings while they revel bottled brews and a delectable chef’s special menu. The bar has been dressed to look like a mini football stadium, with an array of exciting customized packages alongside. Guests can choose from an exquisite selection of theme based cocktails such as Attacker (A delightful mix of Cachaca, Pernod and Pineapple Juice flavoured with cardamom served tall over shaved ice), Dribble (Concoction of Absolut Mandarin, Grand Marnier,  Orange Juice with a hint of Passion Fruit),  Goal Kick (Concoction of Vanilla Vodka , Midori  and lemonade served tall), Header (Hendrick’s Gin made interesting with a hint of mint topped up with Cucumber Juice), Back Pass (Fresh Thai  sweet basil leaves muddled with Absolut Citron shaken with lemon cello served in a chilled Martini glass), Red Card (Vodka made interesting with Disaronno, Watermelon and Almond Syrup), Corner Kick (A delightful mix of Absolut Raspberry and Cranberry Juice powered with Red Bull served over Ice). The culinary team has  crafted an inviting selection of appetizers such as Fire Roasted Sweet Bell and Goat Cheese on Herbed Focaccia with Glazed Artichokes, Marinated Boletus on Herbed Brioche, Peking Spiced Prawns and Asparagus on Lemon Tarts, Thai Spring Chicken Cigars amongst others. Guests can also enjoy specially created packages such as Golden Goal (Bucket of six Domestic Beer and a platter of ‘Bocconcini Skewers with Roma Tomatoes and Sweet Basil Dressing or Thai Spring Chicken Cigars).Where: Island Bar at Shangri-la’s – Eros Hotel When: 12 June – 13 July Price: Rs 700- 3000last_img read more

Villagers at Uluberia fall ill after gas leakage

first_imgKolkata: Some villagers at Howrah’s Uluberia fell ill after inhaling poisonous gas which leaked from a container.The incident triggered tension among locals. The gas container was kept inside a chemical go-down in Palora area of Uluberia on Sunday morning. Locals told the police that the gas container was taken to the go-down by a truck. The gas container was kept outside the go-down when it started leaking.Some of the locals felt a burning sensation in their eyes and complained serious respiratory distress following the incident. Also Read – Heavy rain hits traffic, flightsAfter being informed, police and fire brigade officials reached the spot. The police cordoned off the entire area. Senior police officers also reached the spot immediately. The fire personnel faced difficulties to reach up to the gas container due to pungent smell of the gas. A fire person also fell ill. The fire personnel later put on masks and took the gas container at a deserted place and brought the situation under control.Locals, however, alleged that fire personnel reached the spot late. The fire brigade officials initially tried to identify the leakage. After identifying the leakage, they started repairing it. A senior fire department official said leakage might have been caused when it was put on the ground from the truck or during transportation. According to preliminary investigation, the fire officials suspect that it could be Benjamin cyanide. Police held the owner of the chemical go-down for interrogation.last_img read more

Katie Holmes Jamie Foxx spark dating rumours

first_imgKatie Holmes and Jamie Foxx have reportedly been spending a lot of time together, but it’s nothing serious. Sources don’t expect Holmes to take things to the next level with Foxx, reports “This is not some intense romance. Jamie and Katie are friends and have been for a long time. They are two adults who are attractive and single, and so apparently conclusions will be drawn.’last_img

A musical tribute

first_imgA musical evening of visuals, poetry, music and songs, by the last living ghazal maestro and famed court singer of the Nizam of Hyderabad  Pandit Vithal Rao, Dakhni Urdu poetry by renowned classical vocalist Swati Srinivas, Urdu poetry and introduction by Shagufta Yasmin will be enthralling the audiences on April 8 at Fountain Lawn, India International Center.The event will be inaugurated by Janab K Rahman Saheb (former Union Minister of Minority Affairs and presently Member of Parliament Rajya Sabha) and R V Deshpande (Minister of Tourism), Roshan Baig (Minister of Infrastructure, Government of Karnataka), will grace the occasion. A walk through time in the palaces, forts and dargahs of the Bahmani Sultans of Bijapur, Bidar and Gulbarga through visuals, poetry, music and songs, by Pandit Vithal Rao, is the highlight of the evening. Urdu poetry sung by renowned classical vocalist Vidya Rao and Urdu poetry and introduction by Shagufta Yasmin will lend flavour to this celebration.When: April 8Where: Fountain Lawn, IICTiming: 6.30 – 8.30 pmlast_img read more

No traces of formalin found in fish samples collected from city markets

first_imgKolkata: The fish loving Kolkatans have reasons to rejoice after the Kolkata Municipal Corporation (KMC) found no trace of formalin in the fish samples collected from nine fish markets in the city after a three-day drive.”We have collected as many as 18 samples of fish from nine markets in the city that includes Entally Market, New Market, Manicktala Market, Poura Parna Bithika Market in Behala, Taltala Market, Orphangunge Market in Kidderpore, Taltala Market etc. All the samples have been tested in our laboratory and we have found no trace of formalin,” Member Mayor-in-Council (Health) Atin Ghosh said. Also Read – Rain batters Kolkata, cripples normal lifeThe drive that was held on July 16, 17 and 18 covered the wholesale fish sellers and samples were picked up from Rohu, Katla and a few Bhetki variety.Ghosh, however, added that the civic body will keep an eye on the markets to ensure quality of fish varieties.”We are planning to conduct surprise drives in the wee hours and collect samples when truck loads of fish reach the markets through import,” he maintained.The drive was conducted after there were allegations of presence of formalin in the fish imported from Andhra Pradesh. Also Read – Speeding Jaguar crashes into Mercedes car in Kolkata, 2 pedestrians killedIt may be mentioned that more than half the fish consumed in the city is procured from Andhra Pradesh.Formalin is a preservative that can lead to cancer if consumed over a period of time. The chemical can also cause nausea and other ailments in the short term.Officials of the state Fisheries department have been asked to visit wholesale markets across the city from Saturday to collect samples that will be checked.According to the state Fisheries department stats, the city alone consumes around 235 tonne of fish every day. Fish from Andhra Pradesh – mostly Rohu and Katla – accounts for around 135 tonne of the total consumption.Of around 1.73 lakh tonne of fish that Bengal imports from other states annually, Andhra accounts for around 1 lakh tonne. The Assam government had already banned sale of fish from Andhra Pradesh after lab tests detected formalin in some samples.”Banning of fish from Andhra will be difficult for Bengal. If we stop import, the deficit cannot be met by local production,” an official in the state Fisheries department said.last_img read more

Jalosathis ensuring safe commute for Kolkatans

first_imgKolkata: Deployment of jalosathis at transit points of inland waterways is ensuring safety and security to commuters.It may be mentioned that the Mamata Banerjee government has taken all necessary measures to ensure the safety and security of people who travel across river Hooghly in vessels. Major steps were taken after the Telenipara incident that had claimed some lives. The state government had decided to develop jetties at the transit points following Standard Operating Procedure (SOP), to avoid any untoward incident. Also Read – Rain batters Kolkata, cripples normal lifeBesides upgrading the existing earmarked jetties, new ones were also constructed following the SOP that ensured proper illumination in the area, necessary infrastructure to check overloading of vessels, etc. At the same time, the idea was mooted to deploy well-trained persons at the jetties so that the SOPs are maintained and so, the jalosathis were posted at the jetties. The jalosathis underwent necessary training in this connection before they were posted at the jetties. Besides ensuring that passenger load of vessels is maintained and no passenger gets onto the jetty before the scheduled time, the jalosathis have also been trained to initiate rescue work in case any untoward incident takes place. Also Read – Speeding Jaguar crashes into Mercedes car in Kolkata, 2 pedestrians killedThe jalosathis have been commissioned a blue uniform so that they can be easily identified by commuters, who can approach them for any sort of help. Commuters also feel confident in travelling in the vessels due to the presence of jalosathis at the transit points. At night, the jalosathis ensure that the area remains properly illuminated so that commuters do not face problem in getting down from vessels due to lack of sufficient light at the transit points. The jalosathis follow the orders strictly so that no overloading takes place. They also help elderly people as and when required. They also ensure that there is no rush to get onto the vessels, to prevent any accident.last_img read more

Govt to survey progress of Hindu hostel Partha

first_imgKolkata: State Education minister Partha Chatterjee on Thursday said a top official of the state Higher Education department will visit Hindu Hostel, take stock of the work and make a decision of its opening on Monday.”Special Secretary of state Higher Education department Siladitya Basu Roy will go for inspection of the hostel on Monday morning and take necessary steps to ensure that students can lodge at the earliest,” Chatterjee said. A section of students met Chatterjee at his chamber in the state assembly on Thursday afternoon and sought the government’s intervention. “I have spoken with the engineers of the state Public Works Department (PWD) as well as the minister-in-charge. I have felt that the renovation work has been delayed due to work done in phases by the university and the deadline of November 15 set by the state government for handing over the hostel could not be met,” he maintained. Chatterjee also expressed his doubts about the seriousness of the subject on the part of the university. “The authorities could have taken up this issue with a more humanitarian outlook and at the same time a section of students should have acted with patience,” he added. It may be mentioned that Hindu Hostel remained closed since July 2015 for renovation and the boarders were provided with lodging facilities at Tarulia in New Town. The university has failed to meet deadlines on more than one occasion in case of Hindu Hostel handover. The students had resorted to agitation for a long period demanding the same.last_img read more

Mamata Banerjee condoles demise of Fernandes

first_imgNew Delhi: West Bengal Chief Minister Mamata Banerjee Tuesday condoled the demise of former union minister George Fernandes, saying he was a much admired trade union leader. The former defence minister passed away here on Tuesday morning. Fernandes was suffering from Alzheimer’s disease. Recently, he contracted swine flu, family sources said “Very saddened at the passing away of former Defence Minister and much admired trade unionist, George Fernandes Ji. I have known him for decades. My condolences to his family and admirers,” the Trinamool Congress leader tweeted.last_img

Importance of breakfast for diabetic patients

first_imgYou have heard that breakfast is the most important meal of the day. Breakfast, as the name implies, is to break the fast between dinner and lunch. It is well-established that starting the day with a wholesome breakfast can benefit everyone. If you have type 2 diabetes (T2D), breakfast is necessary and it can have real benefits. Do you think that skipping breakfast can help manage your blood glucose better? Researchers say the opposite is true. In a study, 22 people who controlled their T2D with diet alone or diet plus metformin were studied on two different days. On one, they ate three identical meals for breakfast, lunch and dinner. On the other, they ate only lunch and dinner. On the days they skipped breakfast, their peak blood glucose was 36.8 per cent higher after lunch and 26.6 per cent higher after dinner than on the days they ate breakfast. Also Read – Add new books to your shelfAnother study highlighted that a high-energy intake breakfast of around 700 kcals (vs a low energy breakfast of 200 kcals) decreased the overall high blood sugar (hyperglycaemia) in T2D patients over the entire day. It has been established that better management of blood sugar has been associated with preventing complications of diabetes. Regular consumption of breakfast is potentially important for preventing T2D. A recent study tested 17 healthy adults on three separate days: Once when they skipped breakfast, once when they had three regular meals and once when they skipped dinner. Skipping breakfast led to higher glucose concentrations after lunch than skipping dinner. The key to a healthy morning meal is to choose a variety of foods to get a balance of carbohydrates, proteins, fats and other nutrients like vitamins and minerals — along with the much-needed fibre that helps manage blood-sugar levels. Also Read – Over 2 hours screen time daily will make your kids impulsive Here are some options to consider: Whole grains: Oatmeal, muesli with no added sugar, wheat flakes with added bran, whole-wheat daliya/chapatti/khakhra/paratha/ bread, whole grain millet (ragi, jowar, bajra) preparations. Whole grains are a good source of carbohydrates (including fibre), vitamins and minerals. Dairy: Use non-fat or low-fat milk instead of whole milk. If you don’t drink milk, try non-dairy milk alternatives like soy, almond, coconut milk, etc. Choose plain rather than sweetened versions. Fruits and vegetables: Fresh fruit is a great addition to any breakfast given that they provide fibre, vitamins and minerals. However, limit fruit juice. Vegetables (like carrot, French beans, capsicum, leafy greens like palak, methi, etc.) can be added to all the traditional breakfast foods. Lean protein: Protein foods may help control hunger, manage blood sugar and maintain lean body mass; so include protein at breakfast. Sources of protein include low fat milk/curd/yoghurt/paneer/cottage cheese, eggs, tofu, whole pulses like moong, channa, vatana, rajma, among others, and split pulses, which are all the dals. Healthy fat: Fat can help you feel full but it is important to choose wisely. Go for nuts and seeds, avocados, among others in small to moderate mounts.last_img read more

Bringing together diverse styles of music

first_img‘Under the Banyan Tree on a Full Moon Night’ brings together dynamic and diverse styles of music for the audience – to witness performances by musicians under the tranquil repose of a banyan tree with minarets of the iconic Qutub Minar as the backdrop. The Baithak-style evenings, where moonlight and music blend to recreate the poetic charm of traditional musical gatherings, offer audiences an intimate experience with the like-minded and an opportunity to engage with the musicians. Also Read – Add new books to your shelfWith the April leg of this series, ‘Under the Banyan Tree on a Full Moon Night’, produced by Teamwork Arts will return to the Capital on April 20, to celebrate the sounds and styles of Folk. From small groups gathering around the proverbial fire to sing about topics intrinsic to their experience, folk music has grown into the heart of every community’s shared history. In a way, all music finds its roots in folk. Signature melodies, instruments and concepts form the basis of this rustic genre. Also Read – Over 2 hours screen time daily will make your kids impulsiveThe first performer of the evening, Mooralala Marwada, is a Sufi folk singer from the Janana village of the Kutch District in Gujarat who comes from a long line of Meghwal singers. He sings the poetry of Kabir, Mirabai, Ravidas and others in the Kaafi-style which has evolved and been adopted by the Hindu singers of Shah Abdul Latif Bhittai. He has also been featured on the Kabir Project. Followed by a presentation by Arya’s Kabir Café, a neo-folk fusion band that plays the poetry of 15th-century Indian mystic Kabir in a substrate of Indian folk music, mixed with Rock, Reggae, Pop and Carnatic music. The band which includes members like Neeraj Arya, Mukund Ramaswamy, Viren Solanki, and Poubuanpou Britto KC has performed over 700 shows in India and across the world. This bespoke concert series is the perfect place to enjoy fantastic performances in a stunning venue in the company of a discerning group of music aficionados.last_img read more

Will a new DNA sample help solve Englands leading cold case the

first_imgThe fate of the Princes in the Tower, who disappeared in the late 15th century, has become not only an obsession but a question loaded with potential blame–and exoneration too. Some say Richard III, the boys’ uncle, had them killed, but others furiously defend Richard and point the finger at those they say stood to gain from the removal from the succession of the vulnerable sons of Edward IV.Before he died at the age of 40, Edward IV instructed his younger brother, Richard, Duke of Gloucester, to serve as Lord Protector for his oldest son, also named Edward, who was just 12.The trouble was, Edward’s queen, Elizabeth Woodville, and that brother, Richard of Gloucester, hated each other. There was a lethal split in the family, and Richard seized his older nephew and had him put in the Tower of London for his “protection” before the coronation. The boy’s maternal uncles were killed, and Elizabeth Woodville fled with her other children to Westminster Abbey, claiming sanctuary.Portrait of Richard III of England.But after weeks of intense pressure on the widowed queen, Richard was able to secure the younger son, too. Both princes were placed in the Tower of London. Richard declared himself the rightful king and took the throne as Richard III. He was the one who had the coronation, not his nephew, on July 6, 1483.The two princes were last seen by any members of the public in the summer of 1483. Richard III reigned as king but was killed in the Battle of Bosworth in 1485, and in the time of his successors, Henry VII and Henry VIII, it was widely said that Richard had murdered his nephews. Rumors of the deed circulated in the last year of Richard III’s reign as well. It became a baffling mystery, and source of debate.The Two Princes Edward and Richard in the Tower, 1483, by Sir John Everett Millais, 1878, part of the Royal Holloway picture collection.Now researchers say a recently identified DNA sample could bring some answers.The DNA obviously cannot come from the boys’ direct descendants, since the two of them, Edward V and Prince Richard of York, were assumed to have disappeared before they reached adulthood, married, and had their own children.12 Surprising Origins Of Popular English PhrasesBut the boys’ maternal grandmother, Jacquetta Woodville, is the confirmed ancestor of a modern-day English opera singer, a woman named Elizabeth Roberts, whose female-line mitochondrial DNA scientists were able to isolate. Elizabeth Roberts is the 16 times great-granddaughter of Jacquetta Woodville, also called Jacquette of Luxembourg.King Edward V and the Duke of York in the Tower of London, by Paul Delaroche.That still raises the question: How does one compare Elizabeth Roberts’ DNA to the boys’ DNA when they disappeared?That brings the story to a wooden box discovered two centuries after the boys vanished. Workmen in the Tower found a box buried in the grounds near the White Tower in 1674. The bones were thought to be that of the two princes and were buried in Westminster Abbey in an urn by order of Charles II.Researchers say that if the DNA could be extracted from those remains and compared to that of Elizabeth Roberts, and there is a match, it proves that the dead boys were Edward V and his younger brother, Richard of York. And that, some say, strengthens the theory that Richard III had them killed while they were confined in the Tower of London.Tower of London.However, there are problems with that line of logic. Some defenders of Richard’s reputation say that Margaret Beaufort, the mother of Henry VII, and also the Duke of Buckingham both had something to gain from the murder of the princes, and could possibly have gained access to the Tower during that time, or bribed someone with access.If the bones of the boys in the buried box do not match with the Woodville descendant, Richard’s defenders say that means the princes did not die in the Tower of London. Some say one or both were spirited away and lived in obscurity, although why that would happen is hard to explain. Some say the younger prince was Perkin Warbeck, a pretender to the throne eventually executed by Henry VII.“The discovery of the descendant, and her decision to supply a sample of her DNA have opened up significant avenues of investigation. The traditional narrative surrounding the so-called Princes in the Tower is deeply problematic – but this new DNA brings solving a number of key questions that much closer,” said Philippa Langley, the historical researcher who was responsible for successfully discovering the long-lost grave of Richard III, in an interview published in The Independent.Sarcophagal urn of the presumed bones of Edward V and his brother, Richard of Shrewsbury, Duke of York.Another problem with this theory is that it is unlikely permission will be granted for the bodies buried in Westminster Abbey to be tested. The Abbey has turned down similar requests in the past 50 years, and there seems but a slim chance of officials changing their mind.Read another story from us: The assassinated children of King Edward IV, who were buried beneath a stone staircaseThe new book The Mythology of the Princes in the Tower in which the DNA discovery is revealed “was written by an Essex University historian, John Ashdown-Hill, who tragically passed away just a few months ago,” according to The Independent. It is being published in July 2018 by the UK publisher Amberley Books.Nancy Bilyeau, a former staff editor at Entertainment Weekly, Rolling Stone, and InStyle, has written a trilogy of historical thrillers for Touchstone Books. For more information, go to read more

The plan to bring Woolly Mammoths back to life

first_imgThe Siberian Times recently reported that a proposal is being announced for a project that would create a 4 million ruble paleo-scientific research center to be built in the Yakutia area of Siberia. Its purpose will be to study genetic material from prehistoric animals such as the woolly mammoth and woolly rhinoceros, cave lions, and currently-extinct breeds of horses.The ultimate goal would be to clone those animals. Plans have already been designed for laboratories sunk in the permafrost, to work with samples from several different species.Yakutian horses. Photo UnarovMV CC BY 3.0The proposal is being presented by North-Eastern Federal University in Yakutsk. NEFU is already closely involved in cloning research with the South Korean biotech foundation Sooam, with whom they would be partnering for the new research center.The proposal is expected to be announced at the 4th Eastern Economic Forum in Vladivostok September 11-13th.Yakutia is an excellent location for such a project, since approximately 80 percent of Pleistocene animals found with preserved soft tissue come from this region of Siberia. The preserved soft tissue is necessary for the extraction of usable DNA.Pleistocene of Northern Spain showing woolly mammoth, cave lions eating a reindeer, tarpans, and woolly rhinoceros.Russian scientists have been studying mammoth DNA for years, according to Russia Beyond, but it wasn’t until 2013 that Russian scientists were sent to South Korea to study cloning.The mammoth’s genome has already been mapped, and it can be compared to that of the Asian Elephant. Changes can then be made to the elephant chromosome, creating a live mammoth chromosome.Mural depicting a herd walking near the Somme River in France, by Charles R. Knight, 1916. American Museum of Natural History.The Russian-South Korean partnership is not the only group coming close to restoring the mammoth from extinction. The Guardian talked about a group of Harvard-based researchers in the U.S. who are moving in the same direction.This group’s goal is to use the gene-editing technology CRISPR to modify an Asian elephant with mammoth DNA. This would make a sort of hybrid – an elephant with mammoth characteristics such as small ears, a woolly coat, and blood adapted to cold conditions. This team says they anticipate success within just a year or two.Lyuba the mummified baby mammoth. Photo by Ruth Hartnup CC BY 2.0The Guardian article brings up what should be another very important point in the discussion. Even if resurrecting the mammoth can be done… SHOULD it? For one thing, any attempt to clone a mammoth will probably require a live elephant to act as a surrogate.Asian elephants are on the verge of extinction now and don’t do well in captivity. It would take not just one elephant; it would probably take a number of them to successfully breed a mammoth baby.Indian elephant bull in musth in Bandipur National Park. Photo by Yathin S Krishnappa CC BY-SA 3.0Does the potential benefit for humanity outweigh the potential suffering for the surrogates? Why choose a mammoth instead of some other animal that is better suited to a life in captivity or one which doesn’t require a surrogate mother, at all?There have been some discussions of whether reintroducing mammoths to the steppe environment could help slow down climate change. Smithsonian reported that doing so could help prevent releasing more greenhouse gases from the melting permafrost in the tundra.Head of the “Yukagir Mammoth”; the trunk is not preserved. Photo by synchroswimr CC BY 2.0The permafrost in the Arctic tundra has been frozen since the Ice Age, and it holds huge amounts of carbon from dead plant life that’s contained in the ice. The volume of that carbon is estimated to be twice that of what’s in our atmosphere now. As the ice melts, it’s released as carbon dioxide and methane. This, in turn, speeds up global warming.Mammoths and other large herbivores from the Pleistocene Era helped create a steppe landscape by trampling down shrubs and mosses and rooting up trees, leaving lots of grasses and herbs, but no trees.Woolly mammoth model at the Royal BC Museum, Victoria, British Columbia. Photo Tracy O CC BY-SA 2.0The theory is that bringing these animals back would again spread the steppe environment more widely, cause the ground to absorb less heat, and delay the release of greenhouse gases — which would be great news for the world as a whole.The drawback to this plan is that we really have no way to know what the impacts on the environment could be when we take such a step. We don’t know if the ecosystem’s changes were caused by losing animals like mammoths or if we lost the animals because of the changes to their ecosystem. It’s a gamble on what the end results would be.Finally, it would take a lot of mammoths to really make a difference and a lot of time to breed them. Given the pace of climate change, it might take too long to make a real difference.Read another story from us: Christian Charity Received Mammoth Bones in a Donation BoxClearly, the idea of bringing back the mammoth is one that catches the imagination. The idea of having the ability to do so is pretty awe-inspiring as well. It’s an exciting idea to be able to look at something walking around that hasn’t done so in thousands of years. But it’s also a lot like playing God, and before taking such radical steps, we need to be very sure that we’ve given enough thought to the possible outcomes.last_img read more

Cyber Security a Growing Issue for Small Business

first_imgMarch 21, 2013 3 min read This hands-on workshop will give you the tools to authentically connect with an increasingly skeptical online audience. As more business owners utilize technology such as cloud computing and mobile devices and apps, the risk of hackers accessing money and sensitive business data becomes more real. The House Committee on Small Business addressed this issue today during a special hearing called, “Protecting Small Businesses Against Emerging and Complex Cyber-Attacks.””Small businesses generally have fewer resources available to monitor and combat cyber threats, making them easy targets for expert criminals,” said Chris Collins, chairman of the House’s Subcommittee on Health and Technology. “In addition, many of these firms have a false sense of security and believe they are immune from a possible cyber-attack.”The committee heard testimony from a number of professionals from the tech industry on how and why cyber security is just as much a danger for small companies as it is for larger ones. Here are three security tips that were offered as part of the testimony:Related: Is Your Business Ready for Cyber War?1. Create a written security policy for employees.When it comes to cyber security, one of the biggest problems is the lack of education among small-business owners and their employees, Collins said.Business owners and their IT departments need to stay up-to-date on issues relating to cyber security threats and should create a written security policy for employees, suggested Dan Shapero, founder of Laguna Beach, Calif.-based pay-as-you-go digital marketing firm ClikCloud. In it, determine whether employees should be allowed to have personal data on business devices, he said. Conversely, figure out whether business data should be permitted on their personal devices and what to do in case a device is lost or stolen.Then, share the document with employees and make certain that they understand what to do and why cyber security is vital, Shapero said.2. Use stronger passwords.This might seem like a no-brainer to some, but business owners have been “dumb” about creating smart passwords, said William Weber, senior vice president and general counsel at Cbeyond, an Atlanta-based telecommunications and IT company. If your password is a common word, or something that can be guessed based on public information, consider changing it to something more difficult to crack.Related: 8 Steps to Creating Stronger PasswordsWeber told a story about how one of his small-business clients used the name of his college mascot as his bank password. Hackers figured out the password and removed $40,000 from his account. Business owners should create passwords that are at least 12 characters long and contain upper and lower case letters, as well as numbers and special characters, Weber said.Also, avoid using the same password across multiple accounts, recommended Justin Freeman, corporate counsel at San Antonio, Texas-based IT hosting company Rackspace. The more passwords between hackers and your data or money, the better, he said.3. Encrypt your data.You can’t always keep hackers out of your computer systems, so take steps to protect the data contained within those systems, Freeman said. That’s where encryption comes in. Disk encryption tools come standard on most operating systems, including BitLocker for Windows PCs and FileVault for Macs. These programs essentially convert the data on your systems into unreadable code that isn’t easily deciphered by hackers.Related: Google’s New Portal Provides Help for Hacked Sitescenter_img Enroll Now for Free Free Workshop | August 28: Get Better Engagement and Build Trust With Customers Nowlast_img read more

3 Tech Tools to Better Automate Your Life

first_img Hear from Polar Explorers, ultra marathoners, authors, artists and a range of other unique personalities to better understand the traits that make excellence possible. 5 min read Opinions expressed by Entrepreneur contributors are their own. As a media company CTO, it’s my duty to be progressive when exploring new technologies. At the same time, I need to make sure I don’t become overwhelmed by the many options to manage my data consumption.Everyone who works in the knowledge-based economy depends on email or office productivity software to get through their daily operations. In addition to email, my day-to-day revolves around creating, managing, and accessing files or documents. Any tool that improves my ability to do this has a major positive impact on my efficiency.The projects and tasks that I am responsible for in a given day dictate the files I will need. Keeping close tabs on my daily tasks in a central, trusted system helps me manage my workflow. And, any tools or services that can ease the burden of information overload are hugely beneficial. Technology should be used to help eliminate distracting noise from dragging down your productivity.Here are three tools I employ on a daily basis to help access documents, track what I’m doing, and automate my life:1. Store documents with Google Drive, Dropbox, Skydrive and Box.If you’re a technophile, hopefully these are obvious and you can skip this section. If not, and you haven’t started relying on these services as your file storage solution, this is absolutely critical for you. Stop storing your files on laptops, desktops, tablets, or mobile phones. The mantra that I live by — and consistently push in my role as CTO — is access to data from anywhere, at any time, using any device. If your files are stored on your laptop, which you left at home, you can’t do that.Google Drive is my personal and professional data hub. Dropbox, Skydrive, and Box all provide the same functionality. I don’t store any data on my devices, thus eliminating the fear of losing the device, breaking the device, or leaving it at home when I need some files from it at work. The beauty of cloud-based data storage is that I always have access to it.The argument that these services may go down or aren’t as secure are weak and myopic. We are talking about companies like Google and Microsoft who have thousands of the best engineers. They invest billions of dollars into their infrastructure. I’m pretty sure that your in-house system is far less secure — no offense to your IT team.2. Track daily tasks with Todoist.There are plenty of ways to keep track of your daily tasks, with the most tried and tested being the sticky note on your monitor. But, since you’re an entrepreneur and innovator, you need something digital that’s accessible from anywhere. The solution I heavily rely on is Todoist. I don’t need anything fancy, I just need something simple, clean and functional. Todoist is a web service, accessible via any browser. The interface is simple, intuitive, and uniform across all devices. I can now create, check, and update my tasks on my Macbook, Chromebook, Android phone, iPad, and Nexus 7. The best part is email creation of tasks. I used to mark emails in my inbox with the label “to do” or “follow up.” Now I forward it to my Todoist email address and a task is created for me to track.3. Automate your day-to-day with IFTTT.IFTTT, whose name rhymes with “gift,”  is the unsung hero of my personal digital ecosystem. I only recently started using it and, in a short time, it has become indispensable. IFTTT is an acronym for “if this, then that” and the simple explanation is that it acts as your digital Swiss Army Knife. For example, when I update my Facebook profile photo, IFTTT will automatically change my Twitter profile picture to the same new photo. I can also set it up to automatically save every email attachment in Gmail to Dropbox. Or, how about receiving an email or text when the weather report says it’s going to rain. If I lose my phone in my house, I can send an email to IFTTT triggering a service to call my phone. You get the picture.The power of this service is the extreme flexibility of creating and using any number of “recipes” to custom tailor solutions to your specific needs. There are currently over 70 “channels” to use, including Twitter, Facebook, email, phone, New York Times, SMS, and more. If you’re not using this service, you need to start today because it’s going to improve your digital life significantly.The digital information weighing you down grows exponentially each year, but the tools and technologies to help you manage are also evolving at a rapid pace. Leveraging the right tools is critical to your success as an entrepreneur Listen Now How Success Happens October 10, 2013last_img read more

Watch This JetpackWearing Entrepreneur Rocket Past the Statue of Liberty VIDEO

first_img Free Webinar | Sept 5: Tips and Tools for Making Progress Toward Important Goals Talk about a jetpack joyride. Soaring solo above the Hudson River, boldly gliding like Iron Man past the Statue of Liberty, twin mini jet turbines strapped to your back.Australian entrepreneur-adventurer David Mayman realized that sweet moonage dream this week, in a spectacular stunt that showed off Jetpack Aviation’s lightweight JB-9 jetpack in all its blazing glory. Mayman, who learned to fly before he could drive, successfully piloted the futuristic machine impressively near Lady Liberty before safely landing on a boat to the cheers of onlookers.Related: Fade to ‘Vantablack’: Scientists Invent a Material So Black Your Eyes Can’t See It”It was an incredible experience, one I have been dreaming of since I was a young boy,” said Mayman, JetPack Aviation’s CEO and test pilot. “We have just proved that personal flight is a reality. It’s here and we will stay at the forefront of this.”The high-powered jetpack was 40 years in the making, the culmination of millions of dollars spent and decades of trial and error by Mayman and his business partner, Nelson Tyler. In 1969, Tyler, a three-time Academy Award winner who has long built personal flight devices for use in Hollywood films, created the first civilian rocket belt, a later version of which was piloted at the opening of the 1984 Olympics.   The duo’s latest invention takes off and lands vertically, hovers and cruises for extended periods of time. They say the smooth, sustained maiden flight over the Hudson was FAA and U.S. Coast Guard approved. There’s no word on if and when the mini jet turbine backpack will be available for purchase, but we imagine it won’t be cheap. We reached out to Jetpack Aviation for more details on the sweet ride, but have yet to hear back.  Related: Google X Head: ‘I’m Afraid of People’s Reactions to Technology’The JB-9, which can climb 10,000 feet in the sky at speeds of up to 63 miles per hour, is far from the first jetpack to take to the skies and it won’t be the last. But, if Mayman and Tyler have their way, it could go down in history as the first commercially viable machine of its kind. It’s a feat the inventors are “willing to risk everything” to achieve. They plan to eventually market the innovative personal transportation device to law enforcement, search and rescue and disaster relief organizations, even to everyday dreamers (and commuters) like me and you.   Rock on, rocket man.Related: Bionic Eye Shows Promise for People With Age-Related Vision Loss 3 min read November 6, 2015center_img Attend this free webinar and learn how you can maximize efficiency while getting the most critical things done right. Register Now »last_img read more

MIT Researchers Built a Chip That Could Bring Night Vision to Cars

first_img This story originally appeared on Engadget This hands-on workshop will give you the tools to authentically connect with an increasingly skeptical online audience. Free Workshop | August 28: Get Better Engagement and Build Trust With Customers Now 2 min read Thermal imaging devices like night-vision goggles can help police, search-and-rescue teams and soldiers to pick out bad guys or victims through walls or in complete darkness. However, the best devices require cryogenic cooling, making them heavy, expensive and slow.Enter graphene, the semi-conducting material that’s 100 times stronger than steel — researchers from MIT have built a chip out of the material that may solve the problem. The resulting infrared sensors were small enough that they could be “integrated in every cellphone and every laptop,” according to the study’s co-author, Tomas Palacios.Graphene is one of the best-known infrared sensing materials, so the team built a microscopic sensor chip out of the material. Further graphene was then used to carry the signals and suspend the chip over an air pocket. That eliminated the need for external cooling, normally required by such devices to separate internal heat from the target’s infrared signature.As shown above, the compact sensor was able to detect the shape of a human hand, a promising first result. The goal is to further improve the resolution, so the tech can be used in everyday devices. For example, Palacios told LiveScience that the sensors could one day be integrated into car windshields, giving you “night-vision systems in real time without blocking a driver’s regular view of the road.” That said, we’re still waiting for a host of “promising” graphene-based technology to actually become usable products. Enroll Now for Free November 16, 2015last_img read more