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Aerospace – Wikipedia

Modern aerospace began with Engineer George Cayley in 1799. Cayley proposed an aircraft with a “fixed wing and a horizontal and vertical tail,” defining characteristics of the modern airplane.[2]

The 19th century saw the creation of the Aeronautical Society of Great Britain (1866), the American Rocketry Society, and the Institute of Aeronautical Sciences, all of which made aeronautics a more serious scientific discipline.[2] Airmen like Otto Lilienthal, who introduced cambered airfoils in 1891, used gliders to analyze aerodynamic forces.[2] The Wright brothers were interested in Lilienthal’s work and read several of his publications.[2] They also found inspiration in Octave Chanute, an airman and the author of Progress in Flying Machines (1894).[2] It was the preliminary work of Cayley, Lilienthal, Chanute, and other early aerospace engineers that brought about the first powered sustained flight at Kitty Hawk, North Carolina on December 17, 1903, by the Wright brothers.

War and science fiction inspired great minds like Konstantin Tsiolkovsky and Wernher von Braun to achieve flight beyond the atmosphere.

The launch of Sputnik 1 in October 1957 started the Space Age, and on July 20, 1969 Apollo 11 achieved the first manned moon landing.[2] In April 1981, the Space Shuttle Columbia launched, the start of regular manned access to orbital space. A sustained human presence in orbital space started with “Mir” in 1986 and is continued by the “International Space Station”.[2] Space commercialization and space tourism are more recent features of aerospace.

Aerospace manufacturing is a high-technology industry that produces “aircraft, guided missiles, space vehicles, aircraft engines, propulsion units, and related parts”.[3] Most of the industry is geared toward governmental work. For each original equipment manufacturer (OEM), the US government has assigned a Commercial and Government Entity (CAGE) code. These codes help to identify each manufacturer, repair facilities, and other critical aftermarket vendors in the aerospace industry.

In the United States, the Department of Defense and the National Aeronautics and Space Administration (NASA) are the two largest consumers of aerospace technology and products. Others include the very large airline industry. The aerospace industry employed 472,000 wage and salary workers in 2006.[4] Most of those jobs were in Washington state and in California, with Missouri, New York and Texas also being important. The leading aerospace manufacturers in the U.S. are Boeing, United Technologies Corporation, SpaceX, Northrop Grumman and Lockheed Martin. These manufacturers are facing an increasing labor shortage as skilled U.S. workers age and retire. Apprenticeship programs such as the Aerospace Joint Apprenticeship Council (AJAC) work in collaboration with Washington state aerospace employers and community colleges to train new manufacturing employees to keep the industry supplied.

Important locations of the civilian aerospace industry worldwide include Washington state (Boeing), California (Boeing, Lockheed Martin, etc.); Montreal, Quebec, Canada (Bombardier, Pratt & Whitney Canada); Toulouse, France (Airbus/EADS); Hamburg, Germany (Airbus/EADS); and So Jos dos Campos, Brazil (Embraer), Quertaro, Mexico (Bombardier Aerospace, General Electric Aviation) and Mexicali, Mexico (United Technologies Corporation, Gulfstream Aerospace).

In the European Union, aerospace companies such as EADS, BAE Systems, Thales, Dassault, Saab AB and Leonardo S.p.A. (formerly Finmeccnica)[5] account for a large share of the global aerospace industry and research effort, with the European Space Agency as one of the largest consumers of aerospace technology and products.

In India, Bangalore is a major center of the aerospace industry, where Hindustan Aeronautics Limited, the National Aerospace Laboratories and the Indian Space Research Organisation are headquartered. The Indian Space Research Organisation (ISRO) launched India’s first Moon orbiter, Chandrayaan-1, in October 2008.

In Russia, large aerospace companies like Oboronprom and the United Aircraft Building Corporation (encompassing Mikoyan, Sukhoi, Ilyushin, Tupolev, Yakovlev, and Irkut which includes Beriev) are among the major global players in this industry. The historic Soviet Union was also the home of a major aerospace industry.

The United Kingdom formerly attempted to maintain its own large aerospace industry, making its own airliners and warplanes, but it has largely turned its lot over to cooperative efforts with continental companies, and it has turned into a large import customer, too, from countries such as the United States. However, the UK has a very active aerospace sector, including the second largest defence contractor in the world, BAE Systems, supplying fully assembled aircraft, aircraft components, sub-assemblies and sub-systems to other manufacturers, both in Europe and all over the world.

Canada has formerly manufactured some of its own designs for jet warplanes, etc. (e.g. the CF-100 fighter), but for some decades, it has relied on imports from the United States and Europe to fill these needs. However Canada still manufactures some military aircraft although they are generally not combat capable. Another notable example was the late 1950s development of the Avro Canada CF-105 Arrow, a supersonic fighter-interceptor that was cancelled in 1959 a highly controversial decision.

France has continued to make its own warplanes for its air force and navy, and Sweden continues to make its own warplanes for the Swedish Air Forceespecially in support of its position as a neutral country. (See Saab AB.) Other European countries either team up in making fighters (such as the Panavia Tornado and the Eurofighter Typhoon), or else to import them from the United States.

Pakistan has a developing aerospace engineering industry. The National Engineering and Scientific Commission, Khan Research Laboratories and Pakistan Aeronautical Complex are among the premier organizations involved in research and development in this sector. Pakistan has the capability of designing and manufacturing guided rockets, missiles and space vehicles. The city of Kamra is home to the Pakistan Aeronautical Complex which contains several factories. This facility is responsible for manufacturing the MFI-17, MFI-395, K-8 and JF-17 Thunder aircraft. Pakistan also has the capability to design and manufacture both armed and unarmed unmanned aerial vehicles.

In the People’s Republic of China, Beijing, Xi’an, Chengdu, Shanghai, Shenyang and Nanchang are major research and manufacture centers of the aerospace industry. China has developed an extensive capability to design, test and produce military aircraft, missiles and space vehicles. Despite the cancellation in 1983 of the experimental Shanghai Y-10, China is still developing its civil aerospace industry.

The aircraft parts industry was born out of the sale of second-hand or used aircraft parts from the aerospace manufacture sector. Within the United States there is a specific process that parts brokers or resellers must follow. This includes leveraging a certified repair station to overhaul and “tag” a part. This certification guarantees that a part was repaired or overhauled to meet OEM specifications. Once a part is overhauled its value is determined from the supply and demand of the aerospace market. When an airline has an aircraft on the ground, the part that the airline requires to get the plane back into service becomes invaluable. This can drive the market for specific parts. There are several online marketplaces that assist with the commodity selling of aircraft parts.

In the aerospaces & defense industry, a lot of consolidation has appeared over the last couple of decades. Between 1988 and 2011, worldwide more than 6,068 mergers & acquisitions with a total known value of 678 bil. USD have been announced.[6] The largest transactions have been:

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Aerospace – Wikipedia

Aerospace – definition of aerospace by The Free Dictionary

1. Of or relating to Earth’s atmosphere and the space beyond.

2. Of or relating to the science or technology of flight.

aerospace n.

1. (Physical Geography) the atmosphere and space beyond

2. (Aeronautics) (modifier) of or relating to rockets, missiles, space vehicles, etc, that fly or operate in aerospace: the aerospace industry.

n.

1. the atmosphere and the space beyond considered as a whole.

2. the industry concerned with the design and manufacture of the aircraft, missiles, spacecraft, etc., that operate in aerospace.

3. of or pertaining to aerospace or the aerospace industry.

[195560]

1. Relating to the Earth’s atmosphere and the space beyond.

2. Relating to the science and technology of flight.

Of, or pertaining to, Earth’s envelope of atmosphere and the space above it; two separate entities considered as a single realm for activity in launching, guidance, and control of vehicles that will travel in both entities.

ThesaurusAntonymsRelated WordsSynonymsLegend:

Translations

modif [company, engineer] de l’arospatiale

n Raumfahrtindustrie f

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Aerospace – definition of aerospace by The Free Dictionary

Aerospace – Wikipedia

Aerospace is the human effort in science, engineering, and business to fly in the atmosphere of Earth (aeronautics) and surrounding space (astronautics). Aerospace organizations research, design, manufacture, operate, or maintain aircraft or spacecraft. Aerospace activity is very diverse, with a multitude of commercial, industrial and military applications.

Aerospace is not the same as airspace, which is the physical air space directly above a location on the ground. The beginning of space and the ending of the air is considered as 100km above the ground according to the physical explanation that the air pressure is too low for a lifting body to generate meaningful lift force without exceeding orbital velocity.[1]

In most industrial countries, the aerospace industry is a cooperation of public and private industries. For example, several countries have a civilian space program funded by the government through tax collection, such as National Aeronautics and Space Administration in the United States, European Space Agency in Europe, the Canadian Space Agency in Canada, Indian Space Research Organisation in India, Japanese Aeronautics Exploration Agency in Japan, RKA in Russia, China National Space Administration in China, SUPARCO in Pakistan, Iranian Space Agency in Iran, and Korea Aerospace Research Institute (KARI) in South Korea.

Along with these public space programs, many companies produce technical tools and components such as spaceships and satellites. Some known companies involved in space programs include Boeing, Cobham, Airbus, SpaceX, Lockheed Martin, United Technologies, MacDonald Dettwiler and Northrop Grumman. These companies are also involved in other areas of aerospace such as the construction of aircraft.

Modern aerospace began with Engineer George Cayley in 1799. Cayley proposed an aircraft with a “fixed wing and a horizontal and vertical tail,” defining characteristics of the modern airplane.[2]

The 19th century saw the creation of the Aeronautical Society of Great Britain (1866), the American Rocketry Society, and the Institute of Aeronautical Sciences, all of which made aeronautics a more serious scientific discipline.[2] Airmen like Otto Lilienthal, who introduced cambered airfoils in 1891, used gliders to analyze aerodynamic forces.[2] The Wright brothers were interested in Lilienthal’s work and read several of his publications.[2] They also found inspiration in Octave Chanute, an airman and the author of Progress in Flying Machines (1894).[2] It was the preliminary work of Cayley, Lilienthal, Chanute, and other early aerospace engineers that brought about the first powered sustained flight at Kitty Hawk, North Carolina on December 17, 1903, by the Wright brothers.

War and science fiction inspired great minds like Konstantin Tsiolkovsky and Wernher von Braun to achieve flight beyond the atmosphere.

The launch of Sputnik 1 in October 1957 started the Space Age, and on July 20, 1969 Apollo 11 achieved the first manned moon landing.[2] In April 1981, the Space Shuttle Columbia launched, the start of regular manned access to orbital space. A sustained human presence in orbital space started with “Mir” in 1986 and is continued by the “International Space Station”.[2] Space commercialization and space tourism are more recent features of aerospace.

Aerospace manufacturing is a high-technology industry that produces “aircraft, guided missiles, space vehicles, aircraft engines, propulsion units, and related parts”.[3] Most of the industry is geared toward governmental work. For each original equipment manufacturer (OEM), the US government has assigned a Commercial and Government Entity (CAGE) code. These codes help to identify each manufacturer, repair facilities, and other critical aftermarket vendors in the aerospace industry.

In the United States, the Department of Defense and the National Aeronautics and Space Administration (NASA) are the two largest consumers of aerospace technology and products. Others include the very large airline industry. The aerospace industry employed 472,000 wage and salary workers in 2006.[4] Most of those jobs were in Washington state and in California, with Missouri, New York and Texas also being important. The leading aerospace manufacturers in the U.S. are Boeing, United Technologies Corporation, SpaceX, Northrop Grumman and Lockheed Martin. These manufacturers are facing an increasing labor shortage as skilled U.S. workers age and retire. Apprenticeship programs such as the Aerospace Joint Apprenticeship Council (AJAC) work in collaboration with Washington state aerospace employers and community colleges to train new manufacturing employees to keep the industry supplied.

Important locations of the civilian aerospace industry worldwide include Washington state (Boeing), California (Boeing, Lockheed Martin, etc.); Montreal, Quebec, Canada (Bombardier, Pratt & Whitney Canada); Toulouse, France (Airbus/EADS); Hamburg, Germany (Airbus/EADS); and So Jos dos Campos, Brazil (Embraer), Quertaro, Mexico (Bombardier Aerospace, General Electric Aviation) and Mexicali, Mexico (United Technologies Corporation, Gulfstream Aerospace).

In the European Union, aerospace companies such as EADS, BAE Systems, Thales, Dassault, Saab AB and Leonardo S.p.A. (formerly Finmeccnica)[5] account for a large share of the global aerospace industry and research effort, with the European Space Agency as one of the largest consumers of aerospace technology and products.

In India, Bangalore is a major center of the aerospace industry, where Hindustan Aeronautics Limited, the National Aerospace Laboratories and the Indian Space Research Organisation are headquartered. The Indian Space Research Organisation (ISRO) launched India’s first Moon orbiter, Chandrayaan-1, in October 2008.

In Russia, large aerospace companies like Oboronprom and the United Aircraft Building Corporation (encompassing Mikoyan, Sukhoi, Ilyushin, Tupolev, Yakovlev, and Irkut which includes Beriev) are among the major global players in this industry. The historic Soviet Union was also the home of a major aerospace industry.

The United Kingdom formerly attempted to maintain its own large aerospace industry, making its own airliners and warplanes, but it has largely turned its lot over to cooperative efforts with continental companies, and it has turned into a large import customer, too, from countries such as the United States. However, the UK has a very active aerospace sector, including the second largest defence contractor in the world, BAE Systems, supplying fully assembled aircraft, aircraft components, sub-assemblies and sub-systems to other manufacturers, both in Europe and all over the world.

Canada has formerly manufactured some of its own designs for jet warplanes, etc. (e.g. the CF-100 fighter), but for some decades, it has relied on imports from the United States and Europe to fill these needs. However Canada still manufactures some military aircraft although they are generally not combat capable. Another notable example was the late 1950s development of the Avro Canada CF-105 Arrow, a supersonic fighter-interceptor that was cancelled in 1959 a highly controversial decision.

France has continued to make its own warplanes for its air force and navy, and Sweden continues to make its own warplanes for the Swedish Air Forceespecially in support of its position as a neutral country. (See Saab AB.) Other European countries either team up in making fighters (such as the Panavia Tornado and the Eurofighter Typhoon), or else to import them from the United States.

Pakistan has a developing aerospace engineering industry. The National Engineering and Scientific Commission, Khan Research Laboratories and Pakistan Aeronautical Complex are among the premier organizations involved in research and development in this sector. Pakistan has the capability of designing and manufacturing guided rockets, missiles and space vehicles. The city of Kamra is home to the Pakistan Aeronautical Complex which contains several factories. This facility is responsible for manufacturing the MFI-17, MFI-395, K-8 and JF-17 Thunder aircraft. Pakistan also has the capability to design and manufacture both armed and unarmed unmanned aerial vehicles.

In the People’s Republic of China, Beijing, Xi’an, Chengdu, Shanghai, Shenyang and Nanchang are major research and manufacture centers of the aerospace industry. China has developed an extensive capability to design, test and produce military aircraft, missiles and space vehicles. Despite the cancellation in 1983 of the experimental Shanghai Y-10, China is still developing its civil aerospace industry.

The aircraft parts industry was born out of the sale of second-hand or used aircraft parts from the aerospace manufacture sector. Within the United States there is a specific process that parts brokers or resellers must follow. This includes leveraging a certified repair station to overhaul and “tag” a part. This certification guarantees that a part was repaired or overhauled to meet OEM specifications. Once a part is overhauled its value is determined from the supply and demand of the aerospace market. When an airline has an aircraft on the ground, the part that the airline requires to get the plane back into service becomes invaluable. This can drive the market for specific parts. There are several online marketplaces that assist with the commodity selling of aircraft parts.

In the aerospaces & defense industry, a lot of consolidation has appeared over the last couple of decades. Between 1988 and 2011, worldwide more than 6,068 mergers & acquisitions with a total known value of 678 bil. USD have been announced.[6] The largest transactions have been:

Multiple technologies and innovations are used in aerospace, many of them pioneered around World War II:[11]

Functional safety relates to a part of the general safety of a system or a piece of equipment. It implies that the system or equipment can be operated properly and without causing any danger, risk, damage or injury.

Functional safety is crucial in the aerospace industry, which allows no compromises or negligence. In this respect, supervisory bodies, such as the European Aviation Safety Agency (EASA),[12] regulate the aerospace market with strict certification standards. This is meant to reach and ensure the highest possible level of safety. The standards AS 9100 in America, EN 9100 on the European market or JISQ 9100 in Asia particularly address the aerospace and aviation industry. These are standards applying to the functional safety of aerospace vehicles. Some companies are therefore specialized in the certification, inspection verification and testing of the vehicles and spare parts to ensure and attest compliance with the appropriate regulations.

Spinoffs refer to any technology that is a direct result of coding or products created by NASA and redesigned for an alternate purpose.[13] These technological advancements are one of the primary results of the aerospace industry, with $5.2 billion worth of revenue generated by spinoff technology, including computers and cellular devices.[13] These spinoffs have applications in a variety of different fields including medicine, transportation, energy, consumer goods, public safety and more.[13] NASA publishes an annual report called Spinoffs, regarding many of the specific products and benefits to the aforementioned areas in an effort to highlight some of the ways funding is put to use.[14] For example, in the most recent edition of this publication, Spinoffs 2015, endoscopes are featured as one of the medical derivations of aerospace achievement.[13] This device enables more precise and subsequently cost-effective neurosurgery by reducing complications through a minimally invasive procedure that abbreviates hospitalization.[13]

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Aerospace – Wikipedia

Home | The Aerospace Corporation

Advanced Technology. Objective Analysis. Innovative Solutions.

As an independent, nonprofit corporation operating the only federally funded research and development center for the space enterprise, The Aerospace Corporation performs objective technical analyses and assessments for a variety of government, civil, and commercial customers. With more than five decades of experience, Aerospace provides leadership and support in all fields and disciplines of research, design, development, acquisition, operations, and program management.

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Aerospace – definition of aerospace by The Free Dictionary

Hickling, along with thousands of other aerospace veterans who left or were laid off during the consolidation of the 1990s, reflects how radically the region’s economy has shifted away from its historic dependence on aerospace jobs.That’s a far cry from 1985, when aerospace was a nascent $250 million business for Goodrich, representing just 7 percent of sales.Rexnord Aerospace will partner with Dixie Aerospace to market, sell and distribute PSI Bearings, Shafer Roller Bearings, Tuflite Composite Bearings and Shafer Tooling to the aerospace market.The aerospace cluster is just starting to take off,” said Jack Kyser, the chief economist for the Los Angeles Economic Development Corporation.The increased use of composite materials in aerospace applications will dramatically change the economics of flight and the process of developing aircraft.The great power that has yet to be released in growing the aerospace industry in California is truly the suppliers and manufacturers who are contractors to the aerospace corporations,” Runner told business people gathered for the Santa Clarita 2000 Aerospace Conference.Jefferies Quarterdeck, the aerospace and defense investment banking group of Jefferies & Company, Inc.Called “Other State’s Incentives to Attract or Encourage Aerospace Manufacturing,” the draft report notes that despite defense cutbacks of the early 1990s, there is potential growth for the industry, notably in space projects.The Aerospace & Defense in the United Kingdom industry profile is an essential resource for top-level data and analysis covering the Aerospace & Defense industry.British Aerospace and Marconi – together employing some 130,000 people worldwide, more than 18,000 of them in the United States – said most jobs would be safeguarded.Catherine Gridley, President, Smiths Aerospace Customer Services said: “PBLs have transformed the supply chain resulting in a win-win situation for customers and suppliers.The study, “Beyond Consolidation – A Study of the Continuing Transformation of Aerospace and Defense in Southern California,” concludes the region can pick up 73,000 new aerospace jobs over the next 20 years, mainly from commercial space activity.

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Researcher: Facial Recognition Tech Could Get Trans People Killed

AI researcher Os Keyes envisions several

Deadly Deployment

Facial recognition technology is still in the nascent stages of development, and we’ve already seen many ways it can go wrong, from China using the tech to track and detain minorities to the numerous examples of it perpetuating racial and gender bias.

Now, in an expansive interview with VentureBeat, AI researcher Os Keyesat from the University of Washington has presented several “nightmare scenarios” for transgender people that could result from the deployment of facial recognition tech — and in some cases, they end with the person being killed.

Who’s There?

In the interview, Keyes noted how some apartment buildings are considering the use of facial recognition tech for entry — the idea is a resident would show their face, and the system would recognize them and unlock the door.

Keyes also pointed out how some people are even suggesting facial recognition systems be used to monitor bathrooms.

Keyes told VentureBeat that because some systems have trouble recognizing transgender or gender non-conforming people, they could be flagged, leading to law enforcement being called to the scene — and that could prove deadly for trans people, particularly those of color.

“To be exceedingly deadpan,” Keyes said, “the police’s record with trans people of color is not great, so yeah — the worst case scenario is someone tries to go to the bathroom because they just want to piss and they end up shot or arrested or harassed, or shot and then arrested and then harassed.”

No Good Use

Keyes isn’t just concerned about how facial recognition tech will affect the trans community, though. Another worry is that it doesn’t benefit any members of society enough to warrant further development.

“I would like to see facial recognition development and usage just made straight-up illegal because I don’t think this is a technology with redeeming features,” Keyes told VentureBeat. “Nobody has been able to point me to a use case that directly benefits humanity that can’t be solved with other means. It’s so obviously ripe for abuse and has already been [so] abused that it’s not worth doing.”

READ MORE: A transgender AI researcher’s nightmare scenarios for facial recognition software [VentureBeat]

More on facial recognition: Americans Built Tech for China’s Sinister “Re-Education Camps”

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Researcher: Facial Recognition Tech Could Get Trans People Killed

Scientist: “Alien Life Now Seems Inevitable and Possibly Imminent”

A scientist argues that the sheer volume of potentially habitable planets and moons coupled with the existence of water in space makes life inevitable.

Playing The Odds

The cosmos are filled with roughly Earth-sized exoplanets. Various moons, comets, and planets have stores of water, organic molecules, and amino acids like those that make up life on Earth.

Cathal O’Donnell, a 3D bioprinting researcher at St. Vincent’s Hospital in Melbourne, likes those odds — he argues in The Conversation that the abundance of potentially habitable worlds out there makes the discovery of extraterrestrial life “inevitable and possibly imminent.”

One In 40 Billion

O’Donnell argues that the sheer vastness of space and quantity of exoplanets orbiting in habitable zones — the sweet spots where they’re not too close nor too far from their star — makes the discovery of extraterrestrial life overwhelmingly likely, citing research that calculated that billions of such planets may exist.

And just because a planet doesn’t have a temperate climate doesn’t mean life couldn’t exist there — O’Donnell argues that terrestrial life can be found in Antarctica, in deep-sea hydrothermal vents, and other seemingly inhospitable settings.

Numbers Game

The fact remains that we’ve only encountered life in one place: Earth. But O’Donnell predicts that we’ll be able to probe for life in the near future.

“The ancient question ‘Are we alone?’ has graduated from being a philosophical musing to a testable hypothesis,” O’Donnell writes. “We should be prepared for an answer.”

READ MORE: Why the idea of alien life now seems inevitable and possibly imminent [The Conversation]

More on extraterrestrial life: The Scientist Who Reevaluated The Drake Equation Still Thinks Alien Life is Out There

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Scientist: “Alien Life Now Seems Inevitable and Possibly Imminent”

Meet the Rabbi Fighting Back Against AI Armageddon

Chief Rabbi Ephraim Mirvis wants to make sure that AI is built to serve, not conquer humanity, and wants to make sure important choices aren't automated.

Human Choices

A prominent rabbi wants to make sure that artificial intelligence never takes important choices out of human hands.

“The development of AI has the potential to be the source of enormous blessing for our world by augmenting human capacity, and not by replacing it,” Ephraim Mirvis, Chief Rabbi in the Commonwealth, said on BBC Radio, per Jewish News. “But it is imperative that this technology be harnessed to serve us, rather than the reverse.”

Mirvis echoes the sentiments of many other prominent thought leaders who are troubled by the rise of AI technology — and the lack of meaningful discussion about what decisions and aspects of life ought to remain untouched by it.

Final Battle

Mirvis warned listeners of “a desperate struggle for control between artificial intelligence and its creators” — though it bears mentioning that artificial intelligence, for all its wonders, is far away from being able to do any sort of world dominating.

Others have argued that the dangers posed by AI come from mass unemployment as more companies decide to automate their workforces or when governments decide to build autonomous weapons.

“I am troubled,” Mirvis said. “What happens when soulless artificial intelligence, devoid of feeling or emotion, is called upon to make moral or ethical choices on our behalf?”

READ MORE: The crucial fight for control between AI and its creators [Jewish News]

More on conscious AI: Artificial Consciousness: How To Give A Robot A Soul

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Meet the Rabbi Fighting Back Against AI Armageddon

An Internet Provider Is Selling an “Elite Gamer” Service

U.S. internet service provider (ISP) Cox Communications is offering a new tier of internet service called

Elite Gaming Internet

Internet service provider Cox Communications is offering a new tier of internet service called “Elite Gamer” for an additional $15 a month. The promise: low latency, which in gaming means less lag, for optimal gaming performance.

Cox Communications’ new offering is technically legal, but arguably flies in the face of the hotly debated subject of net neutrality, which was repealed in the United States in 2018. In essence, net neutrality is the act of treating all “lanes” or connections of data on the internet the same without giving certain connections a fast pass.

Lag Spikes

Cox’s FAQ says wants to offer the “fastest pass to your game server” by reducing “lag spikes” with its Elite Gamer tier internet. Anticipating the negative reactions from net neutrality supporters, Cox told Motherboard that its “Elite Gamer” offering does not “prioritize any traffic over others on our network,” or “alter speed in any way.”

If it doesn’t alter the speed or prioritize traffic, though, how is an “Elite Gamer” internet connection any different than any other? Americans are already paying hand over fist for internet, with very few options available, depending on location.

Cox has the opportunity to sell the service to a limited number of people in Arizona as part of a trial. It will then evaluate how to go forward from there, according to Motherboard.

READ MORE: This ISP Is Offering a ‘Fast Lane’ for Gamers…For $15 More Per Month

More on net neutrality: The Inventor of the Web Says It’s Broken and Net Neutrality Can Fix It

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Expert Warns Against Forming Emotional Attachments With Robots

No matter how cute or emotionally-savvy some robots may seem, experts warn that it's an illusion. Artificial intelligence simply isn't that sophisticated.

Faking It

No matter how cute present-day robots are designed to look, no matter how smiley their virtual faces and chipper their beeps and boops, they will never love you back.

The stories of people mourning robots like Jibo, a smart home assistant that announced its own “death” when its servers were scheduled to get shut down last month, are heartwarming. But they also reveal a way, according to the Associated Press, that marketers could exploit the emotions of people — especially kids — by programming robots to seem more emotionally savvy than they really are.

Fast Friends

Humans will bond with seemingly anything, whether it’s a robotic vacuum cleaner that gets pitifully stuck in a corner or Jibo. But that’s because we tend to ascribe intention and consciousness to things that seem to act with purpose, experts told the AP.

“The performance of empathy is not empathy,” MIT AI researcher Sherry Turkle told the AP. “Simulated thinking might be thinking, but simulated feeling is never feeling. Simulated love is never love.”

When a robot does something adorable or seems to have genuine emotions, Turkle suggests that it’s all because of a human-written script — and unfortunately not the basis of a true friendship.

READ MORE: Be wary of robot emotions; ‘simulated love is never love’ [Associated Press]

More on cute robots: Discontinued Robot Assistant Announces Its Own Death

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New Research: The World Is Sadder, Angrier Than Ever Before

People are experiencing higher levels of negative emotions such as sadness and anger, according to a survey of adults in more than 140 nations.

Looking Bleak

The world is not a happy place — at least, not according to the people living in it.

This week, analytics firm Gallup shared the results of a global survey designed to gauge the world’s emotional temperature. Their report suggests that people are sadder, angrier, and more worried than ever before recorded — findings that could have profound implications for global health.

Sad, Mad, and Worried

For its 2018 Global State of Emotions report, Gallup conducted more than 151,000 interviews with adults living in more than 140 countries. They asked survey respondents questions about how they felt the day prior, such as whether they smiled or laughed a lot, and whether they felt sadness or anger.

They found that the number of people who said they’d experienced anger increased by two percentage points over the previous year, while both worry and sadness increased by one percentage point — setting new record highs for all three negative emotions.

Physical Burden

Research has noted the impact negative feelings can have on a person’s physical health — studies have linked anger to an elevated risk of heart attack and stroke, while chronic worry and sadness can be signs of anxiety disorders and depression, which carry an increased risk of heart disease.

If people continue to experience these negative emotions in greater numbers, we could be headed toward a future in which the global population is increasingly unhealthy — a situation that carries its own troubling side effects.

READ MORE: The world is sadder and angrier than ever, major study finds [CNN]

More on sadness: Researchers Found What Sadness Looks Like in the Brain

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New Research: The World Is Sadder, Angrier Than Ever Before

To Prevent the Apocalypse, MIT Says to Study “Machine Behaviour”

Researchers propose a new field of AI study called

Machine Behaviour

Computer scientists and engineers shouldn’t be the only people shaping the future of artificial intelligence, according to a group led by researchers from MIT’s Media Lab.

“We’re seeing the rise of machines with agency, machines that are actors making decisions and taking actions autonomously,” MIT’s Iyad Rahwan said in a blog post. “This calls for a new field of scientific study that looks at them not solely as products of engineering and computer science, but additionally as a new class of actors with their own behavioral patterns and ecology.”

Rahwan and colleagues call this new field “machine behaviour” — and it could ensure we reap the potential benefits of AI while avoiding the pitfalls.

Team Effort

On Thursday, the group published a paper in the journal Nature describing its vision for this new field of study.

They suggest that while experts in the fields of biology, economics, psychology, and beyond are studying AI, their work is taking place in “silos.” The hope is that giving a name to the wider field of AI research will help forge connections between these currently disparate explorations of the tech.

The more people we have working together in the field of AI, in other words, the more likely we are to understand how AIs behave and their potential impact on the world. And that, as the authors write in their paper, “is essential to our ability to control their actions, reap their benefits, and minimize their harms.”

READ MORE: Studying the behavior of AI [MIT Media Lab]

More on AI: Expert: To Understand an Algorithm, Treat It Like an Animal

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To Prevent the Apocalypse, MIT Says to Study “Machine Behaviour”

The Universe Might Be a Billion Years Younger Than We Thought

To reconcile the recently-confirmed, faster rate of universal expansion, researchers suggest that the cosmos may be younger than they previously assumed.

New Answers

New data from the Hubble Space Telescope confirms that the universe is expanding nine percent more rapidly than theoretical calculations predicted.

Those original calculations were based on data from the early universe, so many scientists suspected that something sped up the works. But the new Hubble data suggests that the universe could be substantially younger than previously believed — perhaps by as much as a billion years, according to the Associated Press.

Count The Rings

“It’s looking more and more like we’re going to need something new to explain this,” Johns Hopkins University astronomer Adam Riess told The AP.

Original calculations suggested that the universe is between 13.6 and 13.8 billion years old. If Riess’ hunch is correct, it would mean that it’s only somewhere between 12.5 to 13 billion years old.

“Hey, it’s good news,” Reiss told the news agency. “Everybody likes to look younger.”

Whodunnit

There’s a chance that Riess’ explanation is incorrect and something actually sped up the acceleration of the universe at some point in the last dozen billion years. One potential culprit might be dark energy, but thus far scientists haven’t been able to directly confirm that theory.

NASA astrophysicist John Mather told the AP that there are two extant possibilities: “1. We’re making mistakes we can’t find yet. 2. Nature has something we can’t find yet.”

READ MORE: New study says universe expanding faster and is younger [The Associated Press]

More on the expanding universe: Hubble Data: The Universe is Expanding Faster and Faster

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The Universe Might Be a Billion Years Younger Than We Thought

SpaceX-Like Startups Think They Can Solve Fusion For Cheap

SpaceX Moment

SpaceX has made rocket launches a whole lot cheaper. And now, according to industry experts who spoke to NBC News, fusion energy production could be next — with decades of scientific research to leverage, it could be startups that finally turn fusion energy into an affordable, commercially viable energy source.

“Fusion is poised for a ‘SpaceX moment,’” General Fusion CEO Christofer Mowry told NBC.

Fusion Synergy

It’s thanks to decades of government-funded research that these companies are able to do what they can do — a clear parallel to SpaceX, which built on years of state space exploration technology as well.

“Everything that the private companies have been able to do is built on the shoulders of giants,” Andrew Holland, executive director of the Fusion Industry Association, a DC-based group that represents 17 different fusion companies, told NBC.

Downscaling

Startups like General Fusion or Commonwealth Fusion Systems aren’t alone in their efforts to generate power from fusion. Several massive, internationally funded fusion reactors are under construction right now including the International Thermonuclear Experimental Reactor in France, which is designed to produce 500 megawatts bursts of power.

But startups are betting on smaller scale reactors. To get there, scientists are hoping technologies like superconductors, which could withstand extremely strong magnetic fields inside the reactor, could bring the tech into the realm of feasibility.

READ MORE: Fusion power start-ups go small in effort to bring commercial reactors to life [NBC News]

More on fusion: Scientists Just Got Amazing Results From an Old Fusion Reactor

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SpaceX-Like Startups Think They Can Solve Fusion For Cheap

Leak: Motorola’s Folding Phone Looks Like an Old-School Flip Phone

New images appeared in a since-deleted post on Chinese social media network Weibo of Motorola's upcoming folding RAZR smartphone.

Flip Out

The Verge reports that new images have leaked on Chinese social media of Motorola’s folding phone, the RAZR V4.

We don’t know much about the hotly anticipated device yet. But we do know that the RAZR V4 will likely fold vertically like a traditional flip phone rather than horizontally like Samsung’s delayed Galaxy Fold — a smartphone that uses folding to become even smaller, in other words, rather than a tablet that can fit in your pocket.

Nostalgia Sells

But is this really the revival of the popular RAZR flip phones that were first introduced in 2004? Patents filed back in January seem to support the idea that the leaked images could in fact be Motorola’s upcoming design. The Wall Street Journal previously suggested it will go on sale for $1,500.

It’s arguably not the best time to release a folding device meant for everyday consumers. Review units of Samsung’s folding tablet broke earlier this month after only a single dNotificationsay of testing, thanks to a fragile hinge design and a mysterious protective layer covering the device’s screen. Samsung has since delayed the launch of the device, admitting that it “needs further improvements.”

READ MORE: Motorola’s vertically folding RAZR shown in leaked renders [The Verge]

More on folding phones: Samsung Admits Its Folding Smartphone “Needs Further Improvements”

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Leak: Motorola’s Folding Phone Looks Like an Old-School Flip Phone

DARPA: This Smart Contact Lens Could Give Soldiers Superpowers

Contact High

French engineering school IMT Atlantique revealed what it calls “the first stand-alone contact lens with a flexible micro battery” earlier this month.

And, notably, it caught the attention of the U.S. military’s attention: the Defense Advanced Research Projects Agency (DARPA) is reportedly interested in the contact lens to augment troops’ visual capabilities in the field, according to Task and Purpose — meaning the gadget could represent the augmented contact lens that DARPA has spent a decade searching for.

Weird Flex

The biggest challenge that IMT Atlantique engineers encountered was to scale down the battery. But thanks to a newly developed flexible micro battery, they found a way to continuously light an LED light source for “several hours,” according to a press release.

The release also suggests that “graphene-based flexible electronics” could further enhance the smart contact lens’ capabilities. Applications could range from assisting surgeons in the operating room to helping out drivers on the road.

Enhanced Recon

And now the military wants in on the project as well. French business magazine l’Usine Nouvelle writes that DARPA is interested in the technology. Even tech giant Microsoft is ready to invest two million euros, according to the magazine — which is notable, considering the tech company’s recent HoloLens contract with the U.S. Army.

“All the elements are ready,” Jean-Louis Bougrenet de la Tocnaye, project lead at IMT Atlantique, told l’Usine Nouvelle, as translated from the original French. “We should integrate it in October 2019 and hope to start testing in 2020. Then we will be able to go to the qualifying clinical tests.”

READ MORE: DARPA is Eyeing a High-Tech Contact Lens Straight Out of ‘Mission: Impossible’ [The National Interest]

More on smart contact lenses: DARPA: We’re Moving to Merge Humans and Machines

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Whale Suspected of Being a Russian Weapon Found in Norway

The group of fishermen in Norway found a whale wearing a strange harness with the words

Military Mammal

In 2017, Zvezda, a TV station owned by Russia’s Defence Ministry, reported that the nation’s military was training white whales, seals, and dolphins for Arctic missions — and now it seems one of those recruits may be guilty of desertion.

A group of fishers recently told Norwegian broadcaster NRK that they found a white beluga whale wearing a strange harness with the words “Equipment of St. Petersburg” written on its strap — a clue that the animal may have had a role to play in Russia’s futuristic military plans.

Saying “Hi”

According to the fishers, the whale had been harassing their boats, rubbing against the vessels and pulling on accessible straps and ropes. When they removed its strange harness, which appeared designed to hold a camera or weapon, they saw the message written on it.

“We know that in Russia they have had domestic whales in captivity and also that some of these have apparently been released,” Audun Rikardsen, a marine biology professor at the Arctic University of Norway, told NRK, according to The Guardian. “Then they often seek out boats.”

But when Rikardsen reached out to Russian researchers to try to find who owned the whale, they denied having anything to do with it.

“They tell me that most likely is the Russian navy in Murmansk,” Rikardsen told NRK.

READ MORE: Whale with harness could be Russian weapon, say Norwegian experts [The Guardian]

More on Russia’s military: Russia Says “Super Soldiers” Can Crash Computers With Telepathy

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Whale Suspected of Being a Russian Weapon Found in Norway

No One Knows Who Owns This Massive Database of Americans’ Info

Hactivists have found a database containing details on more than 80 million U.S. households, but they have no idea who owns it.

Millions Exposed

A pair of hacktivists have discovered an unsecured database containing details about more than 80 million households in the United States.

Typically, they’d alert a database’s owner to such a discovery so that they could shore up their security, but in this case no one can figure out who the massive database belongs to — meaning the data of nearly 65 percent of America households is still exposed.

Detailed Description

Hacktivists Noam Rotem and Ran Locar found the 24 GB database hosted on a Microsoft cloud server while conducting research as part of a partnership with VPNmentor.

According to their report, the database includes addresses, full names, ages, and birth dates — as well as coded information they believe correlates to gender, marital status, income, homeowner status, and the type of home they live in.

Thankfully, it doesn’t contain passwords or social security numbers.

Owner TBD

The researchers believe the database belongs to a service of some sort because each entry ends with “member_code” and “score,” but they aren’t sure what that service might be. They did note that no one listed is under the age of 40, so they suspect it might be the work of an insurance or healthcare company.

The researchers are now asking anyone who might have information on the owner to contact them, so that they can ensure the information is secured.

“I wouldn’t like my data to be exposed like this,” Rotem told CNET. “It should not be there.”

READ MORE: Exposed Database Reveals Details on Over 80 Million US Households [CNET]

More on the cloud: Google Will Soon Bring a Blockchain-Like System to the Cloud

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No One Knows Who Owns This Massive Database of Americans’ Info

Scientists Plan to 3D Print Muscular Tissue on the Space Station

Space Medicine

The International Space Station is rapidly becoming a hotbed of biomedical research. One example: a 3D printer that scientists have been using to manufacture biological tissue while in orbit.

Now the printer is scheduled for upgrades that will allow it to manufacture more complex types of tissue, including muscles and blood vessels, according to 3D Printing Industry — pushing the cutting edge of medical research that could make deep space exploration possible.

Stocking Up

In September 2019, the Russian biotech lab 3D Bioprinting Solutions will ship the raw biomaterials necessary to print out muscle tissues up to the ISS.

It’s easier to print out organs in space than on Earth, where they’re more likely to collapse under their own weight. In this case, 3D Printing Industry reports that the muscles, blood vessels, and other complex tissues that the Russian scientists plan to print will stay in space, where they will be examined over time to help reveal the long-term effects of space travel on the human body.

READ MORE: RUSSIAN SCIENTISTS PLAN 3D BIOPRINTING EXPERIMENTS ABOARD THE ISS IN COLLABORATION WITH THE U.S. AND ISRAEL [3D Printing Industry]

More on space 3D bioprinting: Here’s Why NASA Wants to 3D Print Human Hearts in Space

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Scientists Plan to 3D Print Muscular Tissue on the Space Station


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