Fallout 5 Chinese Edition?

By Paris Finnie 

Recently China was successful in activating a plasma reactor. The Experimental Advanced Superconducting Tokamak ( EAST) was able to outshine Germany’s Wendelstein X-7 Stellerator, by bringing their reactor to 90 million fahrenheit for 102 seconds.

China’s reactor took an interesting design approach compared to Germany’s extremely complex design. The Donut shaped reactor uses a magnetic field to balance the nuclear plasma. Perhaps EAST is more efficacious because the temperature reaches three times the temperature of the sun and was able to sustain activation 102 times the duration of Germany.

China’s  plasma data acquisition is of great resource. France hopes to use China’s discoveries as they continue to build The International Thermonuclear Experimental Reactor (ITER). If these ventures prove successful we can be looking at a completely new sustainable energy source.  ITER expects for every 400 seconds of operation 500 megawatts of power. To put that into perspective, charging a Tesla Model S from drained to full costs 40 kWh. In one megawatt there are 1000 kilowatts, therefore you can charge 12,500 Teslas with the power ITER can generate in less than ten minutes.

The scientist and engineers spearheading this endeavor are being extremely meticulous within reason. The projections of completion are within the decade, so there is no need to find an Vault-Tec representatives any time soon.

Source: Yahoo.com 

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Taharrush Jama’i: A Popular Game About Rape

By Ophelia Eden

    A new game is becoming increasingly popular among Arab countries, but this isn’t your average child’s play. The way participants play the game is by picking a lone female and gang raping her; repeatedly.

   The game is called ” Taharrush Jama’i” (collective harassment) and is disgustingly becoming a common occurrence among crowded public events such as protests, parades, and celebrations. The game works like this; a group of men select a solo female victim and form two large circles around her. The inner circle violently strips and gang rapes the female, while the outer circle acts as a cover to protect fellow “teammates” from possible opposition by the rest of the crowd. Ensuring no help arrives to the brutally assaulted female in the center.

 The game gained infamy during the Arab spring, when reporter Lara Logan was assaulted, stripped and raped for more than 20 minutes while she covered a story in Egypt following the toppling of Hosni Mubarak.

   Unfortunately, this shows us that many societies still have a misogynistic and discriminatory attitude towards women, and efforts must be made globally to change this pre-evolutionary mindset.

Source: Parhlo

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Einstein’s Gravitational Waves ‘Seen’ From Black Holes

Compliments of BBC

Scientists are claiming a stunning discovery in their quest to fully understand gravity.

They have observed the warping of space-time generated by the collision of two black holes more than a billion light-years from Earth.

The international team says the first detection of these gravitational waves will usher in a new era for astronomy.

It is the culmination of decades of searching and could ultimately offer a window on the Big Bang.

The research, by the Ligo Collaboration, has been accepted for publication in the journal Physical Review Letters.

The collaboration operates a number of labs around the world that fire lasers through long tunnels, trying to sense ripples in the fabric of space-time.

Expected signals are extremely subtle, and disturb the machines, known as interferometers, by just fractions of the width of an atom.

But the black hole merger was picked up by two widely separated LIGO facilities in the US.

“We have detected gravitational waves,” David Reitze, executive director of the Ligo project, told journalists at a news conference in Washington DC.

“It’s the first time the Universe has spoken to us through gravitational waves. Up until now, we’ve been deaf.”

Prof Karsten Danzmann, from the Max Planck Institute for Gravitational Physicsand Leibniz University in Hannover, Germany, is a European leader on the collaboration.

He said the detection was one of the most important developments in science since the discovery of the Higgs particle, and on a par with the determination of the structure of DNA.

“There is a Nobel Prize in it – there is no doubt,” he told the BBC.

“It is the first ever direct detection of gravitational waves; it’s the first ever direct detection of black holes and it is a confirmation of General Relativity because the property of these black holes agrees exactly with what Einstein predicted almost exactly 100 years ago.”

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World’s Largest Solar Plant Will Provide Power For 1.1M People

Compliments of Computer World

The world’s largest solar power plant, now live in Morocco, will eventually provide 1.1 million people with power and cut carbon emissions by 760,000 tons a year.

The $9 billion Noor Concentrated Solar Power (CSP) plant could eventually start exporting energy to the European market.

The Noor Concentrated Solar Power (CSP), paid for with funds approved by The World Bank, is located in the Souss-Massa-Drâa area in Morocco, about 6 miles from Ouarzazate town. It began operation on Thursday. While the World Bank and other development partners provided financial support, the Noor solar plant is a wholly Moroccan project.

“With this bold step toward a clean energy future, Morocco is pioneering a greener development and developing a cutting edge solar technology,” Marie Francoise Marie-Nelly, World Bank Country Director for the Maghreb, said in a statement. “The returns on this investment will be significant for the country and its people, by enhancing energy security, creating a cleaner environment, and encouraging new industries and job creation.”

Noor concentrated solar power

The World Bank

On the left, phase 1 of the Noor Concentrated Solar Power plant is generating energy. On the right, phase 2 will be completed in 2017 and phase 3 in 2018.

Overall, the new Noor CSP plant will increase Morocco’s energy independence, create 1,600 jobs during construction and 200 jobs during the power plant’s operation, and increase the installed capacity of solar power stations from 22MW in 2013 to 522MW in 2018, according to The World Bank.

The plant will be able to store solar energy in the form of heated molten salt, which allows for the production of electricity even at night.

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New Gershad App Protects Iranian Citizens From Morality Police

By Paris Finnie 

A new app has hit the the streets of Iran. The app aims to protect women and men from the frequent harassment of the Morality Police. The app, Gershad, uses mapping and alerts in its interface to place markers of the locations of the police,  allowing citizens foresight into where to meander when traveling. The application within 24 hours of release was a sensation, downloaded by nearly every Android user in the country. The Iranian Government was swift in blocking the citizens from app access.

Blocking the app was the first step in ensuring the citizens, especially the woman, of Iran are to follow moral and public law. Public law in Iran in one example, means women are to observe strict hijab ( wearing female head covering and dress). Dissenters from this expectation are often subject to the ramifications given to them by the Morality Police. In 2014 persian police obtained over 200,000 pledges from non conforming Iranians to observe strict hijab, over 15,000 cases to the judiciary, and over 2.5 million warnings to non observers ( people who do not wear head coverings and dress properly).

The application is a tangible response to the growing opposition to suppressive laws in Iran. After four decades of religious and social dictates, the younger generation are seeking a change in their lifestyle. A means to express themselves without getting punished for that expression. The company commits to maintaining its operation and working on other means to unblock the app for the citizens to use.

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Riots in Hong Kong Leave 60 Arrested and 90 Police Injured

By Paris Finnie 

Terror breaks out as hundreds fight during Chinese New Year celebration. Hong Kong, the epicenter of the violence, has not seen such escalation of chaos since 2014. In that year many protesters took to the streets to fight for democracy. This year however,  the catalyst appears to be from illegal food depots in Mong Kok being forcibly shut down.

The area of Mong Kok home to where a rugged commercial district resides, is also less than two miles from a primary viewing location for the firework display. Police were in full force stationed to protect the crowds of over 200,000 people gathering to celebrate the year of the monkey, but were not expecting to send dozens of officers to the commercial district.

Police were forced to Fire warning shots to try to gain control of the riot. Dissenters with self made weapons, bricks, and bottles. Set fire to the streets making it difficult for law enforcement to restore order in the district. Officials claim the few violent radicals incited the rage brought forth that night and reports also lead to an observation of weapon shipments brought to Mong Kok to use in the riots. Officials are still uncertain of who provided those shipments.

Speculations of who to accuse grow amongst the cities leaders.  Groups under investigation are members of Hong Kong’s Indigenous Group and supporters of Edward Leung Tin-Kei, who is legislative council candidate up for election. The Indigenous group was said to have ran to the aid of shop keepers, but were not responsible for the riots. Supporters of Edward were said to have posted an invitation to march in the streets of Mong Kok on Facebook, entailing attendees to bring water, masks, and protective gear. As suspicious it may seem,  there is still lack of evidence to suffice responsibility.

Order has thus been restored to the streets of Hong Kong.

Source: Bloomberg 

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Leaked Police Files Contain Guarantees Disciplinary Records Will Be Kept Secret

Compliments of The Guardian 

Contracts between police and city authorities, leaked after hackers breached the website of the country’s biggest law enforcement union, contain guarantees that disciplinary records and complaints made against officers are kept secret or even destroyed.

A Guardian analysis of dozens of contracts obtained from the servers of the Fraternal Order of Police (FOP) found that more than a third featured clauses allowing – and often mandating – the destruction of records of civilian complaints, departmental investigations, or disciplinary actions after a negotiated period of time.

The review also found that 30% of the 67 leaked police contracts, which were struck between cities and police unions, included provisions barring public access to records of past civilian complaints, departmental investigations, and disciplinary actions.

Samuel Walker, a professor in criminology at the University of Nebraska, Omaha, said there was “no justification” for the cleansing of officers’ records, which could contain details of their use of force against civilians.

“The public has a right to know,” Walker said. “If there was a controversial beating, we ought to know what action was actually taken. Was it a reprimand? A suspension?”

Walker said that while an officer’s whole personnel file should not be readily available to the public outside of court proceedings, records of disciplinary action should be.

The leaked contracts became publicly accessible last week, when hackers breached the Fraternal Order of Police’s website and put around 2.5GB worth of its files online. These provide a glimpse into the influence of police unions, which Black Lives Matter activists have accused of impeding misconduct investigations, particularly after the death of 25-year-old Freddie Gray in Baltimore, Maryland in April.

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Elephants for Rhinos?

Compliments of Digital Journal

Swaziland is planning to transfer 18 wild elephants in a Boeing 747 plane to United States in order to relocate them to three American zoos. In exchange, the zoos will be contributing $450,000 to a wildlife conservation trust in Swaziland for rhinos.

The U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service has approved an application from zoos in Dallas, Wichita and Omaha to import 18 wild elephants from Swaziland.The transfer involves 15 female and three male elephants estimated to range from six to 25 years old.

The permit allows a partnership formed by the zoos to import the elephants from Big Game Parks, an independent nonprofit that manages several wildlife parks in the Southern African Nation. Swaziland, which is facing its worst drought in decades, was planning to kill the animals as a population control measure because the growing elephant herd was endangering other animals such as rhinos.

Room for Rhinos, a partnership between the zoos and Swaziland officials, is overseeing the project. Melissa Graham, a spokeswoman of Kansas Zoo said:

The plan to move them to the United States is a pragmatic and humane solution to help balance this environment and provide a home to elephants that need one, while at the same time expands a critically needed rhino conservation program. Zoo partnership had not paid for the animals but it was contributing $450,000 over five years to a wildlife conservation trust in Swaziland for rhinos.

Dennis Pate, President/CEO of Omaha’s Henry Doorly Zoo said:

We will be flying them here on a 747 plane that’s a freighter.The maximum number it can take is 18 animals.

However, many conservationists and scientists have voiced their opposition to the plan. A statement signed by over 70 ecologists, elephant and animal welfare experts’ highlighted concerns over the elephants’ welfare. The statement read:

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Warning Shots Fired Towards North Korea

By Paris Finnie

The United Nations has met and spoken over the  recent conduct of North Korea. In simpler terms the northern  region of Korea does not want to play ball with the rest of the world. Recently South Korea fired warning shots at a North Korean boat that crossed its boarders. The tactical response stirred international waters, as this has not been the first suspicious act committed by the North Korean Country. The United Nations believes it is time to address North Korea with a little more force in order to protect global peace.

Source: Washington Post 

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JOHNSON & JOHNSON, VIACYTE TESTING POSSIBLE DIABETES CURE

Compliments of AP 

Johnson & Johnson, continuing its long quest for a Type 1 diabetes cure, is joining forces with biotech company ViaCyte to speed development of the first stem cell treatment that could fix the life-threatening hormonal disorder.

They’ve already begun testing it in a small number of diabetic patients. If it works as well in patients as it has in animals, it would amount to a cure, ending the need for frequent insulin injections and blood sugar testing.

ViaCyte and Johnson & Johnson’s Janssen BetaLogics group said Thursday they’ve agreed to combine their knowledge and hundreds of patents on their research under ViaCyte, a longtime J&J partner focused on regenerative medicine.

The therapy involves inducing embryonic stem cells in a lab dish to turn into insulin-producing cells, then putting them inside a small capsule that is implanted under the skin. The capsule protects the cells from the immune system, which otherwise would attack them as invaders – a roadblock that has stymied other research projects.

Researchers at universities and other drug companies also are working toward a diabetes cure, using various strategies. But according to ViaCyte and others, this treatment is the first tested in patients.

If the project succeeds, the product could be available in several years for Type 1 diabetes patients and down the road could also treat insulin-using Type 2 diabetics.

“This one is potentially the real deal,” said Dr. Tom Donner, director of the diabetes center at Johns Hopkins University School of Medicine. “It’s like making a new pancreas that makes all the hormones” needed to control blood sugar.

Donner, who is not involved in the research, said if the device gives patients normal insulin levels, “it’s going to prevent millions of diabetics from getting dangerous complications.”

People with Type 1 diabetes no longer produce insulin, the hormone that converts sugar in the blood into energy, because their immune system has killed off the beta cells in the pancreas. Those cells make insulin in response to rising blood sugar levels after a meal.

Over years, excess sugar in the bloodstream damages blood vessels and organs. Without effective treatment, diabetics suffer severe complications: blindness, kidney failure, heart disease, amputations, even premature death. On the other hand, too much insulin can cause very low blood sugar, which can kill patients, particularly young children.

According to the American Diabetes Association, about 29.1 million Americans have diabetes, including 1.25 million with type 1 diabetes. The number with Type 1, or insulin-dependent, diabetes is growing steadily. Meanwhile, the number with Type 2 diabetes, whose bodies make some insulin but don’t use it efficiently, is increasing exponentially due to the global epidemic of obesity and sedentary lifestyles.

Many patients can’t control it well because treatment is exhausting, requiring a strict diet, frequent exercise, multiple daily insulin injections or other medicines and several finger pricks a day to test blood sugar. Also, some patients can’t afford the expensive medicines.

ViaCyte Inc., based in San Diego, has been researching its treatment for a decade, partly with funding from the Juvenile Diabetes Research Fund and the California Institute for Regenerative Medicine.

Johnson & Johnson, based in New Brunswick, New Jersey, is a major ViaCyte investor and has been conducting parallel research for about 13 years, said Diego Miralles, J&J’s head of global innovation.

“We wanted to hedge our bets to make sure we would win in this space … that is so transformational,” Miralles said.

He wouldn’t disclose financial terms of the deal with ViaCyte.

The privately held company began the first round of patient testing a year ago, implanting its product, dubbed VC-01, in a dozen people with Type 1 diabetes, said Paul Laikind, ViaCyte’s CEO and president. They received a small dose of insulin-producing cells inside their devices and are being closely monitored for two years to see insulin production and other effects.

After 12 weeks, the device had properly attached to nearby blood vessels, their new insulin-producing cells were still multiplying and no side effects were seen. Another dozen planned patients will soon get the same cell dose in capsules to be implanted in them.

If that goes well, in the next round of testing a few dozen patients will get devices holding a full dose of the cells implanted, likely in the second half of this year. Further testing may be needed before the product can be approved by regulators.

“We do believe that it will need to be replaced periodically,” Laikind said.

Earlier testing in thousands of mice over years showed the lab-created insulin-producing cells matured and produced the needed hormone inside the mice for as long as they lived, about a year, noted Laikind.

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