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A Beautiful Yet Grim Map Shows How Wildfire Smoke Spreads

Now in the map menu click on “Vertically Integrated Smoke”. Instead of measuring smoke about eight meters above the ground, he models what an air column 25 kilometers high looks like at a given location in the United States. (Think of it as the smoke you can see in the sky, versus the near-surface smoke… Continue reading A Beautiful Yet Grim Map Shows How Wildfire Smoke Spreads

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Are Radioactive Diamond Batteries a Cure for Nuclear Waste?

In summer of 2018, an amateur drone dropped a small package near the lip of Stromboli, a volcano off the coast of Sicily that has erupted almost constantly for a century. As one of the most active volcanoes on the planet, Stromboli is a source of fascination for geologists, but collecting data near the rotating… Continue reading Are Radioactive Diamond Batteries a Cure for Nuclear Waste?

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I Was a Floating Head at an NBA Game. It Gets Weirder

On the night of the Sixers-Celtics game, my husband Charlie and I downloaded Microsoft Teams to separate laptops, logged in, and watched the game from its digital side with the dozen other people in our section. (They were mostly other reporters.) Charlie left his seat in the front row and reappeared in the fourth row;… Continue reading I Was a Floating Head at an NBA Game. It Gets Weirder

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Apple Accidentally Approved Malware to Run on MacOS

For decades, Mac users needed to worry less about malware than their Windows counterparts, but in the last few years that has started to change. With the aim of combating growing threats such as adware and ransomware, in February, Apple began “notarizing” all macOS apps, a verification process designed to eliminate illegitimate or malicious apps.… Continue reading Apple Accidentally Approved Malware to Run on MacOS

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The Pheromonophone Lets You Reach Out and Smell Someone

For two decades, experimental artist and philosopher Jonathon Keats has produced works that explore how we humans perceive ourselves and our place on this planet. He does it through books and exhibitions, but above all through bizarre inventions. A camera that takes a single exposure over 1000 years, so we can visualize the abstract concept… Continue reading The Pheromonophone Lets You Reach Out and Smell Someone

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What the T-Mobile and Sprint Merger Means for You

T-Mobile has successfully acquired Sprint from April 1, becoming a single company and increasing the total number of major US cellular carriers from four up to three. At least for now. And since August 3, the Sprint brand is officially no longer. If you were a Sprint customer or are on T-Mobile, you might be… Continue reading What the T-Mobile and Sprint Merger Means for You

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How Cryptography Lets Down Marginalized Communities

A die The perennial highlights of the International Association for Cryptologic Research Crypto Conference is the “guest talk”. For an hour each year, a prominent scholar shares a big idea or new perspective on the protocols, algorithms, and mathematical problems that underpin advanced encryption. It’s usually a deeply technical bacchanal, but this year was not.… Continue reading How Cryptography Lets Down Marginalized Communities

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Should Google’s Ad Market Be Regulated Like the Stock Market?

The days of The men in suits shouting orders on the bustling floors of the stock exchanges have mostly disappeared, replaced by windowless rooms full of waiters, but the stock exchange is still a bustling place. Of the 13 U.S. exchanges combined, approximately 50 million transactions take place every day. And yet, there is another… Continue reading Should Google’s Ad Market Be Regulated Like the Stock Market?

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Explainer: What do political databases know about you?

American citizens are inundated with political messages – on social media, in their news feeds, by email, texts and phone calls. It is no coincidence that people are bombarded: political groups prefer a “multimodal” electoral contact strategy, where they use many platforms and multiple attempts to persuade a citizen to engage with their cause or… Continue reading Explainer: What do political databases know about you?

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Covid Is Accelerating a Global Censorship Crisis

Over 180,000 in the United States, people have now died from the coronavirus, a horrific loss of life that contrasts starkly with the duration and severity of the pandemic in the rest of the world. Covid-19 “brought the most powerful country in the world kneelingWith everything from the Trump administration’s destructive response to an underfunded… Continue reading Covid Is Accelerating a Global Censorship Crisis