News That Matters

Technology

Geminid meteor shower could be the year's best, scientists say

Geminid meteor shower could be the year's best, scientists say

Technology
Skywatchers are in for a dazzling show tonight. The annual Geminid meteor shower that will streak across the night sky will be one of the best of the year, scientists say. The Geminid meteors are expected to peak overnight. With good weather conditions, the cosmic display can be seen between 7:30 p.m. and dawn local time. The largest number of meteors will be visible between midnight and 4 a.m. local time, according to NASA. "With August's Perseids obscured by bright moonlight, the Geminids will be the best shower this year," said Bill Cooke with NASA's Meteoroid Environment Office. "The thin, waning crescent Moon won't spoil the show." Considered one of the year's most reliable meteor showers, the Geminids occur every December when Earth passes through a vast trail of dusty debris she...
Google's most searched terms of 2017 revealed

Google's most searched terms of 2017 revealed

Technology
Google remains the most used search engine on the web and its annual list of the most popular searches always offers an excellent glimpse into the zeitgeist.The company's trends data reveals that people asked "how" more than any other question.As the political and natural environment erupted in turmoil this year, Google users asked: How do wildfires start? How to calm a dog during a storm? How to make a protest sign?Alongside its video of the year's trends, Google said: "These questions show our shared desire to understand our experiences, to come to each other's aid, and, ultimately, to move our world forward."Interestingly, differences between the UK and US show peculiar differences in focus.Despite North Korea's threat to attack the US mainland with a nuclear-tipped intercontinental bal...
What is net neutrality?

What is net neutrality?

Technology
Net neutrality rules put in place under the Obama administration are at risk of being overturned. The Federal Communications Commission will vote Thursday on whether to remove net neutrality rules instituted during the Obama administration, after a proposal by President Donald Trump's appointed FCC Chairman Ajit Pai, who suggested in May removing the classification for internet service providers (ISPs) as public utilities. This could allow ISPs to charge more for consumers to access different websites. Here's what you need to know: What is net neutrality?Net neutrality is the principle that ISPs treat all content equally and not give preference to some digital content providers. That means the consumer can load every website, app, video, .gif, etc., equally, regardless of where the cont...
SpaceX launching recycled rocket, supply capsule for NASA

SpaceX launching recycled rocket, supply capsule for NASA

Technology
Space Age hand-me-downs are soaring to a whole new level. On Tuesday, SpaceX plans to launch its first recycled rocket for NASA. The unmanned Falcon 9 — last used in June — will carry up a Dragon capsule that's also flown on a previous space station supply run. NASA's International Space Station manager, Kirk Shireman, said the risk of launching a recycled rocket is about the same as for a brand new one. He expects to be just as anxious as he always is at every launch. "It's still a dangerous business," he told reporters Monday. Although NASA's best rocket experts conducted an extensive review of the recycled and meticulously inspected booster, there is never "zero risk," he pointed out. The private SpaceX has launched recycled rockets three times before, on commercial satellite deliverie
France names winners of anti-Trump climate change grants

France names winners of anti-Trump climate change grants

Technology
Eighteen climate scientists from the U.S. and elsewhere hit the jackpot Monday as French President Emmanuel Macron awarded them millions of euros in grants to relocate to France for the rest of Donald Trump's presidential term. The "Make Our Planet Great Again" grants — a nod to Trump's "Make America Great Again" campaign slogan — are part of Macron's efforts to counter Trump on the climate change front. Macron announced a contest for the projects in June, hours after Trump declared he would withdraw the U.S. from the Paris climate accord. More than 5,000 people from about 100 countries expressed interest in the grants. A majority of the applicants — and 13 of the 18 winners — were U.S.-based researchers. Macron's appeal "gave me such a psychological boost, to have that kind of support, t