Stanford University finds that AI is outpacing Moores Law – ComputerWeekly.com

Stanford Universitys AI Index 2019 annual report has found that the speed of artificial intelligence (AI) is outpacing Moores Law.

Moores Law maps out how processor speeds double every 18 months to two years, which means application developers can expect a doubling in application performance for the same hardware cost.

But the Stanford report, produced in partnership with McKinsey & Company, Google, PwC, OpenAI, Genpact and AI21Labs, found that AI computational power is accelerating faster than traditional processor development. Prior to 2012, AI results closely tracked Moores Law, with compute doubling every two years., the report said. Post-2012, compute has been doubling every 3.4 months.

The study looked at how AI algorithms have improved over time, by tracking the progress of the ImageNet image identification program. Given that image classification methods are largely based on supervised machine learning techniques, the reports authors looked at how long it takes to train an AI model and associated costs, which they said represents a measurement of the maturity of AI development infrastructure, reflecting advances in software and hardware.

Their research found that over 18 months, the time required to train a network on cloud infrastructure for supervised image recognition fell from about three hours in October 2017 to about 88 seconds in July 2019. The report noted that data on ImageNet training time on private cloud instances was in line with the public cloud AI training time improvements.

The reports authors used the ResNet image classification model to assess how long it takes algorithms to achieve a high level of accuracy. In October 2017, 13 days of training time were required to reach just above 93% accuracy. The report found that training an AI-based image classification over 13 days to achieve 93% accuracy would have cost about $2,323 in 2017.

The study reported that the latest benchmark available on Stanford DAWNBench , using a cloud TPU on GCP to run the ResNet model to attain image classification accuracy slightly above 93% accuracy, cost just over $12 in September 2018.

The report also explored how far computer vision had progressed, looking at innovative algorithms that push the limits of automatic activity understanding, which can recognise human actions and activities from videos using the ActivityNet Challenge.

One of the tasks in this challenge, called Temporal Activity Localisation, uses a long video sequences that depict more than one activity, and the algorithm is asked to find a given activity. Today, algorithms can accurately recognise hundreds of complex human activities in real time, but the report found that much more work is needed.

After organising the International Activity Recognition Challenge (ActivityNet) for the last four years, we observe that more research is needed to develop methods that can reliably discriminate activities, which involve fine-grained motions and/or subtle patterns in motion cues, objects and human-object interactions, said Bernard Ghanem, associate professor of electrical engineering at King Abdullah University of Science and Technology, in the report.

Looking forward, we foresee the next generation of algorithms to be one that accentuates learning without the need for excessively large manually curated data. In this scenario, benchmarks and competitions will remain a cornerstone to track progress in this self-learning domain.

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Stanford University finds that AI is outpacing Moores Law - ComputerWeekly.com

ASML version of Intel roadmap shows 1.4nm CPUs arrive in 2029 – CPU – News – HEXUS

Intel semiconductor machinery partner ASML presented at the IEEE International Electron Devices Meeting earlier this week and raised eyebrows with an edited version of an Intel processor scaling roadmap. Intel originally showed off this roadmap back in September. However, ASML made it rather more interesting by clearing the fog and overlaying the nanometer node sizes alongside corresponding years, spanning 2019 through to 2029.

Above you can see the original Intel roadmap slide from September. Below is the ASML edited version superimposing numerals indicating node sizes. As AnandTech notes, people could have extrapolated these from 2019 10nm+, ++ and so on, themselves - but it is good to see it in 'ink'.

Overall the slides represent the intended return to a two year cadence for Intel manufacturing process node upgrades. It shows we are now at 10nm, as far as Intel is concerned, and we will see 7nm EUV in 2021, 5nm and new features in 2023, 3nm in 2025, 2nm in 2027, and the first time we have seen charted or mentioned with respect to Intel: 1.4nm in 2029. This 1.4nm scale means a processor feature could be as small as the length of 12 silicon atoms in a row.

Between each node will be a yearly iterative + version - a 'tock' following the process 'tick', if you like. Furthermore, every node shows an opportunity to back port new process features to the previous node, shown as ++ versions. This can help maintain a smooth flow of product if there are any production issues going forward.

Overall it looks like Intel and ASML are aiming to keep step with Moore's Law for the next decade but this might be more of an optimistic schedule than a cold hard realistic plan. Indeed, beyond 2023 Intel is still in the path-finding and 'research' mode, notes AnandTech. Meaning that it is still looking at and assessing new materials, new transistor designs, and so on. To get to 5nm and beyond Intel is considering introducing stacked nanowires and 3D wafer stacking, as highlighted in a presentation by Jim Keller this summer, marking the 50th anniversary of Moore's Law. See the slide above, which seems to chronographically correspond to the slides atop of this article.

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ASML version of Intel roadmap shows 1.4nm CPUs arrive in 2029 - CPU - News - HEXUS

These are the unis to study law at if you want to be minted – The Tab

Sorry to break it to you, but if you're studying English or Philosophy or whatever, there's no pot of gold.

Law, on the other hand. Well, for the low low price of one human soul, you will be rewarded handsomely. In fact, you could be raking in up to 60k just five years after graduating.

Law nerds Legal Cheek have ranked the UK's best and brightest law schools by the median earnings of law grads five years after graduating.

Pretend to be shocked: Oxford and Cambridge top the table, with their grads getting over 50k on average.

In a Champions League-places upset, west country minnows Bristol beat Durham, UCL, York, and Warwick into fourth place.

1: Oxford 67,000

2: Cambridge 58,500

3: LSE 44,700

4: Bristol 42,900

5: Durham 42,100

6: Nottingham 41,800

7: Warwick 41,500

8: KCL 39,300

9: UCL 37,500

10: York 36,400

11: Glasgow 35,100

12: Edinburgh 35,000

13: Exeter 34,700

14: Reading 34,200

15: Aberdeen 33,500

16: Leeds 33,200

17: Manchester 32,800

18: Southampton 32,400

19: Birkbeck 32,100

20: Newcastle 31,900

21: East Anglia 31,700

22: SOAS 31,100

23: Strathclyde 31,000

24: Buckingham 30,800

25: Sussex 30,100

26: Queen Mary 29,800

27: Robert Gordon 29,800

28: City 29,400

29: Leicester 29,400

30Brunel 29,100

31: Dundee 29,100

32: Roehampton 28,900

33: Surrey 28,800

34: Oxford Brookes 28,300

35: Birmingham 28,300

36: Cardiff 27,700

37: Kingston 27,400

38: Open University 27,200

39: Bournemouth 27,100

40: Kent 27,000

41: Sheffield 26,700

42: Brighton 26,500

43: Westminster 26,200

44: Canterbury Christ Church 26,100

45: Glasgow Caledonian 26,000

46: Portsmouth 25,600

47: Edinburgh Napier 25,200

48: Essex 25,100

49: Lancaster 24,900

50: Cumbria 24,900

51: Liverpool 24,800

52: Stirling 24,800

53: Buckinghamshire New 24,700

54: Nottingham Trent 24,700

55: Greenwich 24,300

56: Northumbria 24,000

57: West of England 24,000

58: St Marys 23,800

59: Chester 23,400

60: Staffordshire 23,100

61: Hertfordshire 23,100

62: Hull 23,100

63: Anglia Ruskin 23,000

64: Gloucestershire 23,000

65: Plymouth 23,000

66: London South Bank 22,900

67:Southampton Solent 22,900

68: Salford 22,900

69: Keele 22,800

70: Abertay Dundee 22,800

71: Winchester 22,700

72: Coventry 22,500

73: Sheffield Hallam 22,500

74: West of Scotland 22,500

75: Bangor 22,400

76: Croydon College 22,300

77: Leeds Beckett 22,200

78: Liverpool John Moores 22,200

79: West London 22,100

80: De Montfort 22,000

81: Manchester Metropolitan 21,900

82: Aberystwyth 21,900

83: Middlesex 21,500

84: Swansea 21,500

85: South Wales 21,500

86: Sunderland 21,400

87: Northampton 21,300

88: Birmingham City 21,300

89: Lincoln 21,200

90: Derby 21,100

91: East London 20,800

92:Bedfordshire 20,600

93: Teesside 20,500

94: London Metropolitan 20,300

95: Edge Hill 20,100


These are the unis to study law at if you want to be minted - The Tab

Video: Moore’s Law is Not Dead – insideHPC

Jim Keller is a senior vice president and General Manager of the Silicon Engineering Group (SEG) at Intel Corporation.

In this video from the EECS Colloquium, Jim Keller from Intel presents: Moores Law is Not Dead.

Moores observation has continued to be challenged and questioned. And yet, today hundreds of billions of dollars are being invested in silicon technology that will enable feature sizes just a few atoms wide. To understand this unabated growth in computing, one needs to deconstruct the Moores Law transistor count exponential as the output of numerous individual innovations across the computing stack in silicon process technology, in integrated circuit design, in microprocessor architecture and in software. To take advantage of exponentially growing transistor counts, every layer of the computing stack will continue to be redefined over and over again. While it is true that certain vectors like transistor performance and power are showing diminishing returns, other vectors like transistor architecture, microprocessor architecture, software and new materials are showing increasing returns. The combination of these will continue to make life interesting and challenging for hardware and software designers alike.

Jim Keller is a senior vice president and General Manager of the Silicon Engineering Group (SEG) at Intel Corporation. Jim has more than 20 years of experience in x86 and ARM-based microarchitecture design across a broad range of platforms, including PCs, servers, mobile devices and cars. Before joining Intel, he served as vice president of Autopilot and Low-Voltage Hardware in Tesla. Prior to Tesla, he served as corporate vice president and chief cores architect at AMD, where he led the development of the Zen* architecture. He also previously held the role of vice president of Engineering and chief architect at P.A. Semi, which was acquired by Apple Inc. in 2008. He led Apples custom low power, mobile chip efforts with the original A4 processor that powered the iPhone 4*, as well as the subsequent A5 processor. He holds a bachelors degree in electrical engineering from Pennsylvania State University.

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Moores Law for weapons? Army research find law-like progression of technologies – ScienceBlog.com

Anticipating the technology and weapon systems of our future Army might not be entirely daunting, new Army research finds.

Trends in the progression of weapon systems from the early crossbowman to a musket to a military tank might help predict our future systems, according to a new study to be published in theJournal of Defense Modeling and Simulation, Towards Universal Laws of Technology Evolution: Modeling Multi-century Advances in Mobile Direct Fire Systems.

A number of law-like regularities are known to apply to both technological and naturally emerging complex systems, said Dr. Alexander Kott, author of the paper and a researcher at the U.S. Army Combat Capabilities Development Commands Army Research Laboratory. Identifying these regularities may help long-range technology forecasting, which this paper illustrates by exploring two systems that might appear 30 years in the future.

Certain performance measures of technological systems often exhibit exponentialand sometimes superexponentialpattern of growth over time, Kott said. A particularly well-known example of such a regularity is Moores Law, which states that a performance measure of a computer chip doubles approximately every two years. Many other technologies follow a similar law of exponential growth.

So-called allometric relations are another class of law-like regularities. Often, a universal relation exists between the scale of the organism and its various attributes, applicable across multiple organisms of widely different scales, Kott said. For example, the Kleibers Law states that for the vast majority of animalsfrom tiny mouse to huge elephantthe organisms metabolic rate scales approximately to the 3/4 power of the organisms mass, and the data for all such organisms fall on the same curve.

This research explores whether a single regularity of technological growth might apply to technologies of widely different scales, over a period of multiple centuries. Kott investigated a collection of diverse weapon systems he describes as the mobile direct-fire systems. These include widely different families of technologies that span the period of 1300-2015 CE: Soldiers armed with weapons ranging from bows to assault rifles; foot artillery and horse artillery; towed anti-tank guns; self-propelled anti-tank and assault guns; and tanks.

Ultimately, this research finds that, indeed, a single, uncomplicated regularity describes the historical growth of this extremely broad collection of systems. Multiple, widely different families of weapon systemsfrom a bowman to a tankfall approximately on the same curve, a simple function of time. Unlike a conventional curve of exponential growth with time, this regularity also depends on the physical scale (specifically, mass) of the technological artifacts. This suggests a general model that unites allometric relations (such as the Kleibers Law) and exponential growth relations (such as the Moores Law).

To my knowledge, no prior research describes a regularity in the temporal growth of technology that covers such widely different technologies, of widely different physical scales, and over such a long period of history, Kott said. However, such a regularity should be taken with a degree of caution. You cannot use it as a design guide. There is a lot more to a good system than a very parsimonious figure of performance we use in our model. Interpretations of the model require care.

This research suggests a possibility that even broader collections of technology families might evolve historically in accordance with what might be called universal laws of technological evolution, and provides related research questions for further investigation.

What I find interesting about the findings of this paper, said Dr. Bruce West, the U.S. Armys chief mathematician, is that from the evolutionary allometric perspective, this is the first set of empirical data that demonstrate the existence of a strongly time-dependent allometric coefficient. I anticipated such time dependency in my earlier papers, and here is a clear empirical confirmation.

Kott muses about this law-like but previously unrecognized trend.

In hindsight, he said, this multi-century, multi-scale regularity may not be all that surprising, but somehow nobody noticed this previously. Perhaps, the future is not a silent mystery. It speaks to us from the past, softly.

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Moores Law for weapons? Army research find law-like progression of technologies - ScienceBlog.com

Silicon Valley Chip Makers Add New Twist to Moore’s Law – Toolbox

With the demands of artificial intelligence outpacing Moores Law, a pair of Silicon Valley chip designers are rethinking the architectural approaches for machine-learning applications.

In a sectorwhere smaller has beenbeautiful for decades,can bigger really be better for lowering a chips workload latency?

Designers at thecompanies, Cerebras Systems and Xilinx, used the Hot Chips symposium in Palo Alto, California, last week as the backdrop to their largest product releases, each of which aims to pack more processing power for intensivetechnologies.

To do it, the companies are bucking the trend named for Gordon Moore, the former chief executive of Intel, who observed five decades ago that transistor densities on a microchip double about every two years. While the prediction has guided R&D teams in the intervening years, the limits of physical space on a single chip now are leading designers to explore novel solutions.

Xilinx, based in Palo Alto, is touting its new Virtex Ultra Scale Plusfield-programmable gate array, or FPGA. It possessesnine billion logic cells in a system-on-chip platform that can access 1.5 terabits of memory per second. Built on a 16-nanometerstandard, thechip's 35 billion transistors are larger by 1.6 times the logic density of its previous iteration, the Virtex UltraScale.

To make their designs work,Cerebras and Xilinx both stepped back from the sector's drivetoproduce shorter distances between transistors. From 10 micrometers in 1971, designers have shrunk those lengths to infinitesimal distances to accommodate more integrated circuits on their chips.

Following Moores Law, Koreas Samsung and Taiwans TSMC began producing5nm chips earlier this year, and both companies are working on 3nm designs that could hit the market in 2021. Shortening the distance between circuits shaves processing time, but it alsoraisesissues around quality control in manufacturing and cooling in operations.

The chip's hugesize is aimed mostly at cloud services providers like Amazon Web Services, Microsoft and Google that rent processing power and storage to corporationsand government agencies. While Cerebras saysselect customers are using its chip, it has yet to release details about when the Wafer Scale Engine will be available on the open market.

Xilinx scaled down its latest FGPA from the 20nm standard. Doing so allowed it to forge 2,000 user input-output connections and achieve a per-second transceiver bandwidth of 4.5 terabits. With it, users can implement advanced SoC design architectures or prototype their own, the company says.

To improve time to market, Xilinx offers co-validation that lets users integrate and customize hardware and software designs both before physical parts become available. The feature is part of a development platform for the FPGA that includes de-bugging and visibility tools. The company plans to bring the Ultra Scale Plus to market next year.

According to Open AI, a foundation that works to guide the development of artificial technology, computational resources used to train the most advanced machine-learning algorithms grew by 300,000 times between 2012 and 2018.

The rate means chip makers must redouble their efforts, both traditional and unconventional, to keep pace with demand.

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Silicon Valley Chip Makers Add New Twist to Moore's Law - Toolbox

Intels Jim Keller: Were all building nanowires Intel, TSMC, Samsung – PCGamesN

Intels Jim Keller says that if you think Moores Law is dead and you dont believe in it youre a little delusional. And to make sure that the technology world keeps kicking along with the pace it has done were all building nanowires in the fab.

This new design of transistor sees silicon moving beyond the 3D FinFET transistor design, which our graphics cards and CPUs have been running on since planar transistors died a death, and pushing into the Gate All Around (GAA) era. Weve heard about Samsungs plans for GAA design around the 3nm mark; its already given out the design kit for the upcoming process, making it sure look like Moores Law still has a few nodes left.

Keller has been giving his Moores Law Is Not Dead talk over at Berkeley this week, and the UC Berkeley EECS Events team has live streamed the entire thing over on YouTube and you can catch up on this fascinating, intimate little chat right now. And it basically boils down to a simple if youre not prepared to let Moores Law die then it wont.

We had planar transistors, we went to FinFET, says Keller. Were all building nanowires in the fab. Intel, TSMC, Samsung, everybodys working on it. Theres a really interesting thing while the world thinks Moores Laws dead, the fabs and the technologists think its not and everybodys announced now a 10-year roadmap for Moores Law.

Keller also goes on to describe tasking his engineers with finding a pathway to 100x gate density. They came back all glum because they could only come up to 50x right now, so thats what hes going with

Theyve got clear line of sight to pitch scaling of the eponymous fins of FinFet tech, delivering a 24nm fin pitch, which is about 3x. At this point Keller feels the need to explain that there are still shrinks that can be made, after all, the tip of the fins is still over 100 atoms wide.

So were not running out of atoms, he says. We know how to print single layers of atoms but the fins themselves, theyre mountains.

Then its on to nanowire technology, then stacked nanowire technology, and on to wafer-to-wafer stacking. After that its die-to-wafer stacking because, as Keller says, 3D stacking is going to become more and more important as we build stuff.

His point is that basically, Moores Law is not dead, because theres a whole bunch of people invested in making sure it doesnt happen. John Carmack sure as hell is a smart cookie, but hes not necessarily at the leading edge of semiconductor technology development.

If your idea set says this is going to keep going, and theres a whole bunch of challenges, then I think we will rise to the challenge, says Keller. And Ive seen that over and over. If you think its running out of gas, it will. If you think its not, its not going to. And theres many people in the industry working on this.

So many people have told me computer architecture cant move any further. Really? How many times has it changed over the last thirty years? Like, over and over and over.

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Intels Jim Keller: Were all building nanowires Intel, TSMC, Samsung - PCGamesN

Gemmel Moore’s Mother and Jasmyne Cannick Praise Councilmember Lindsey Horvath for Pushing the Investigation of His Death – WEHOville

LaTisha Nixon, the mother of Gemmel Moore, and JasmyneCannick, who led the campaign for an investigation into his death in 2017 in theLaurel Avenue apartment of Ed Buck, spoke at tonights City Council meeting inpraise of City Councilmember Lindsey Horvath for her help and were dismissiveof Mayor John DAmicos assertion that he and other members of the Council alsohad been pushing for an investigation into the circumstances of Moores death.

Bucks arrest last Tuesday on charges of operating a drug den and on Wednesday on a federal charge of distributing methamphetamine leading to a death brought an end to a more than two-year campaign by Cannick and Nixon and black activists to investigate Bucks involvement in Moores death and in the drug-related death in Bucks apartment in January of this year of Timothy Dean, a 55-year-old black man. However, the arrest, which got nationwide media coverage, has revived criticism of local politicians and District Attorney Jackie Lacey for not more aggressively investigating Buck and has prompted allegations that his donations to election campaigns of Democratic elected officials had bought him some protection.

In a recent op-ed published by WEHOville, Marco Colantonio called on Mayor DAmico and the City Council to acknowledge the effort by Cannick to press District Attorney Jackie Lacey and the L.A. County Sheriffs Department to investigate Bucks involvement in Gemmel Moores death. Lacey initially refused to file charges against Buck, saying that an investigation by the Sheriffs Department didnt turn up sufficient evidence to ensure a conviction.

DAmico, in an apparent response to the pressure, opened tonightsCity Council meeting by asking Cannick to lead with the Pledge of Allegianceand then followed with a speech in which he said: I and my colleagues on theCity Council have been seeking justice and have pressed the L.A. CountyDistrict Attorneys Office for a full investigation. DAmico acknowledged the workof Cannick and of Jerome Kitchen, a young black man who was a friend of Mooresand who had interrupted several city meetings to demand that action be taken ininvestigating Buck.

In her comments before the Council, Cannick focused onLindsey Horvath. I came down here today because I want to publicly thankLindsey Horvath, she said. I dont know about the rest of you, she said,referring to the other City Council members, but you (Horvath) stood with us.

I also want to thank the people of West Hollywood whowere (Bucks) neighbors and made sure to let us know what was going on at alltimes, Cannick said, a reference to alerts from others in and near Bucksapartment at 1234 N. Laurel Ave. about the arrival at Bucks apartment of youngblack men, some of whom who Buck has solicited on the Adam4Adam.com gay sexsite. An affidavit filed with the criminal complaint against Ed Buck in U.S.District Court on Wednesday identifies 10 young black men who have claimed tohave had drug-related sexual encounters with Buck in his apartment.

LaTisha Nixon began her comments to the City Council by saying: Mayor, I do want to thank you for the $25 donation to my sons funeral, a somewhat caustic response to the fact that DAmico has declined to redirect Ed Bucks contributions to his election campaigns to the Justice 4 Gemmel + All of Ed Bucks Victims fund, which Cannick has said will help with legal costs as well as supporting the family of Gemmel Moore and all of Ed Bucks victims.

DAmicos initial election to the Council in 2011 came withthe support of Buck, an animal rights activist, based on DAmicos pledge topush for a fur sales ban in West Hollywood. Buck has donated a total of $1,000to DAmicos 2011 and 2015 election campaigns. Buck also has donated over$500,000 to a political action committee called the Animal PAC, which is saidto have campaigned in favor of DAmico along with many other local, state andfederal Democratic Party candidates.

Speaking to Horvath, Nixon said: I want to thank you fromthe bottom of my heart, the bottom of my familys heart I want to thank youfor believing us for stepping out and advocating for us.

Nixon also criticized Councilmember John Duran, who was on vacation to celebrate his birthday and wasnt present at tonights Council meeting, for his controversial response to her request at an Aug. 21 City Council meeting that law enforcement grant immunity to prosecution to sex workers who were willing to testify about their interactions with Buck. At that meeting, Duran warned that such testimony would make the sex workers vulnerable to prosecution for prostitution or drug use. Horvath responded that she had asked the District Attorneys Office to grant such immunity, which it did.

While the City Council has been criticized for not speaking out about the deaths in Bucks apartment, in fact, it did issue a statement in January, after the death of Timothy Dean, saying it has requested a full investigation by the Los Angeles County Sheriffs Department. At several meetings Council members also have questioned Capt. Edward Ramirez of the West Hollywood Sheriffs Station about the status of the Buck investigation.

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Gemmel Moore's Mother and Jasmyne Cannick Praise Councilmember Lindsey Horvath for Pushing the Investigation of His Death - WEHOville

Revisiting Douglas Moore’s anti-gay rhetoric on Council – Washington Blade

Former D.C. Council member Douglas E. Moore died Aug. 2. (Photo via Twitter)

Former D.C. Council member Douglas E. Moore, a Methodist minister who in 1977 referred to gay activists as fascist faggots and who emerged as an outspoken opponent of a bill to protect gays and lesbians from discrimination, died Aug. 2 at a hospital in Clinton, Md. He was 91.

His wife, Doris Hughes-Moore, told the Washington Post the cause of death was complications associated with Alzheimers disease and pneumonia.

Moore won election to an at-large D.C. Council seat in 1974 during the citys first election under its home rule government approved by Congress in the early 1970s. Similar to several other D.C. Council members elected that year, Moore had been an active participant in the African-American civil rights movement in the 1960s.

However, unlike nearly all of his Council colleagues during the first four years of the citys home rule government who were strong supporters of the gay community, Moore emerged as an outspoken opponent of gay rights, including gay rights legislation pending before the Council.

In 1977, when the D.C. Human Rights Act was being considered by the Council, Moore led a campaign to delete the category of sexual orientation from the legislation. His opposition to including that category, which was defined as covering gays, lesbians, and bisexuals, came shortly after singer Anita Bryant led a widely publicized campaign in Dade County, Fla., to repeal by voter referendum an existing gay rights law in that jurisdiction, which succeeded in securing repeal of the law.

In D.C., the Council approved its Human Rights Act in 1977 with the sexual orientation protection included by a wide margin, with Moore and just one other Council member voting no.

Moores talk about organizing a possible referendum to repeal the gay rights provision similar to the Dade County vote prompted LGBT activists to help pass an amendment to the D.C. City Charter that bans initiative or referendum votes on laws that protect the human rights of D.C. residents.

A little over 30 years later, that D.C. charter provision was used to successfully prevent anti-LGBT advocates from placing D.C.s same-sex marriage law on the ballot in 2009.

Meanwhile, to the surprise of LGBT activists, Moore didnt immediately speak out against a 1976 resolution approved unanimously by the D.C. Council declaring Gay Pride Day on the same day as Fathers Day.

But in September 1977, when asked by Washington Post columnist Milton Coleman about how he was on record of voting with his fellow Council members for the Gay Pride resolution, Moore said it was a mistake and he didnt intentionally support the resolution. Coleman said Moore vowed to block such a resolution from passing again.

Unless they pass it when Im dead, cripple or paralyzed, there wont be no more Gay Pride Days in Washington, D.C., Coleman quoted him as saying.

The next year, in 1978, Moore ran for the position of D.C. Council chair while continuing to express his opposition to what he called the three Gs gays, gambling and grass (marijuana), as Coleman quoted him as saying.

To the strong relief of LGBT activists, then D.C. Council member Arrington Dixon (D-Ward 4), a strong LGBT rights supporter, beat Moore in the race for Council chair by a wide margin.

Dixons decisive victory over Moore ended overt homophobia as a viable political tactic in D.C. elections, said Craig Howell, former president of the D.C. Gay and Lesbian Activists Alliance.

Moore ran and lost three subsequent bids for D.C. Council seats after his loss to Dixon in 1978. He ran and lost his race for mayor in 2002.

Longtime D.C. and Ward 8 community activist Phil Pannell said Moore had a change of heart in his years out of politics when he came to support the right of LGBT people to be free from discrimination.

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Revisiting Douglas Moore's anti-gay rhetoric on Council - Washington Blade

Paul Hollywood’s brother-in-law Simon Moores and David Hockings killed in ‘unexplained’ plane crash – Birmingham Live

The cause of a plane crash in northern Spain in which two British pilots died will remain unexplained, a coroner has concluded.

Simon Moores - who was the brother-in-law of Bake Off star Paul Hollywood - and David Hockings died in the crash in January.

Their plane hit a mountain in Errezil near the Spanish coast amid dense fog, Mr Moores's inquest in Kent heard on Wednesday.

Coroner Ian Goldup read evidence from Spanish witnesses, one of whom had been walking on Mount Hernio at the time and heard the impact.

Mr Moores, 62, from Kent, and Mr Hockings, from Sussex, had been flying from Cascais in Portugal to Hondarribia airport on January 9 when their light plane crashed.

He posted pictures during the flight on his Twitter account, looking down on the Spanish mountains.

The inquest was unable to establish why the British-registered Piper plane collided with Mount Hernio.

The coroner cited the "dense fog" that had covered the mountain on the day in question, but was unable to say why the plane went down.

Mr Goldup said: "We do not know whether there was an engine problem, whether it was mechanical.

"We do not know why the accident occurred."

He said that despite the lack of clarity as to why the crash happened, the inquest was "probably the end" unless Mr Moores's family decides to pursue civil action in Spain.

Mr Goldup returned a conclusion of "unascertained" death on Mr Moores.

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Paul Hollywood's brother-in-law Simon Moores and David Hockings killed in 'unexplained' plane crash - Birmingham Live

Kenya Moore’s Breakup With Hubby Marc Caught On ‘RHOA’ Cameras – Radar Online

Kenya Moore and her husband Marc Daly got into an explosive fight while RHOA cameras were rolling and that led to their split, RadarOnline.com exclusively learned.

Kenya aggressively confronted Marc at an event he was hosting, and Bravo was filming, an insider snitched to Radar about an event at the Wimbish House that was filmed for The Real Housewives of Atlanta on Sept. 17. The charity event for Black Man Lab was hosted by Marc.

The insider told Radar why she was so angry at her husband.

Marc told Evas [Marcille] husband that he is tired of Kenyas s**t, the source spilled.

He called her an attention whore.

The insider told Radar that Marlo Hampton overheard Marc talking to Evas husband and she told Cynthia Bailey, NeNe Leakes and Eva about the conversation, which Kenya overheard.

The source said that Kenya was furious with her husbands words and their ugly confrontation was caught on camera.

Marc just doesnt want to be on TV. It is plain and simple, the insider told Radar.

Kenya was shouting all sorts of threats at Marc and the cameras kept rolling.

Their troubled relationship was not a surprise to the insider.

It has been coming ever since she started filming again. Marc doesnt return her calls, he doesnt come to Atlanta, doesnt see their baby. It is all very upsetting to Kenya.

Scroll through the gallery for exclusive details of Kenyas troubled marriage.

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Kenya Moore's Breakup With Hubby Marc Caught On 'RHOA' Cameras - Radar Online

Optane persistent memory: Breakthrough or broken promise? – VentureBeat

Companies looking to capitalize on the performance promise of Intels Optane persistent memory have been trying to vet the performance claims and calculate TCO for years now. On August 27, Intel put out a press release that led with the following tidbit (bear with us, this gets more interesting):

Intel today announced Baidu is architecting the in-memory database of its Feed Stream services to harness the high-capacity and high-performance capabilities of Intel Optane DC persistent memory. Paired with 2nd Gen Intel Xeon Scalable processors, building a new memory platform based on Intel Optane DC persistent memory allows Baidu to lower its total cost of ownership (TCO) while delivering more personalized search results to users.

If your eyes glazed over during the last few seconds, here are the key points:

VentureBeat started covering Optane (or, more accurately, the 3D XPoint media underlying Optane) four years ago. At that time, Intel boasted that the new memory technology was 10 times denser than conventional DRAM, 1,000 times faster than the fastest NAND SSD, and 1,000 times the endurance of NAND. However, at the same IDF presentation it was announced, Optane as demonstrated was only 7.23 times faster than the fastest available NAND SSD chips.

A year and a half later, following the announcement of the first Optane-based SSDs, tech analyst Jack Gold noted, Because it is significantly less expensive than DRAM and can have 15X 20X the memory capacity per die (e.g., 8GB vs. 128GB) while achieving speeds at least 10X that of NAND, it is an ideal intermediary memory element where adding more relatively fast memory can significantly increase overall system performance at a lower cost than stacking it with large amounts of DRAM.

Two and a half years later, thats still Optanes promise: near-DRAM performance for less cost per gigabyte than DRAM while facilitating a huge jump in system memory capacities. To grossly oversimplify matters, lots of DDR4 means that large workloads can stay in RAM and not incur the disk swaps to distant storage that can slaughter latency and throughput. So, yes, Optane PMMs are slower than DRAM, but theyre faster than NAND, and eliminating disk swapping for active workload data should yield significantly improved application performance.

Which takes us back to our article opening: Intel launched Optane DC persistent memory in early April 2019, and its a reasonable bet that buyers like Baidu had access to pre-production parts before the launch date. How, then, have we reached September with nary a results-based case study for Optane PMM in sight?

Where are the real-world numbers that prove the promise?

Total cost of ownership (TCO) discussions depend in part on, well, costs. When someone says that an Optane PMM-with-DRAM configuration (because you need both, not just Optane) yields better TCO than an all-DRAM configuration, your first impulse might be to check pricing on both and compare. Theres no reason to do that here on these pages today, because costs change and thats the point.

DRAM prices are extremely volatile, said Michael Yang, analyst and director of research at Informa Tech (formerly IHS Markit). It can double or halve in a year. Two years ago, DRAM would have been three times more than Optane. Today, theres barely any cost premium, only 20% or 30% more so cheap you can almost argue theres parity. Theres not enough difference for people to rearchitect their server farm, for sure. Thats why Intel is moving the argument away from cost.

Another factor in this shifting narrative may be the imminent arrival of DDR5 next year, which Yang says may double DIMM capacities. DDR5 is also expected to scale to double the data rates of DDR4.

If Yang sounds as if hes arguing against Optane, dont jump to conclusions. Hes an admirer of Optane technology in general and believes it holds much potential. However, he would like to see Optanes promise being delivered and observe how Optane scales going forward. Hes also quick to point out that Optane PMM isnt for everybody.

We are certainly seeing data become more valuable, and real-time analytics are on the rise, he said. Optane PMM will be the right solution for some, but not all, workloads by providing the right mix of performance and cost.

To perhaps extrapolate from Yangs sentiments, bear in mind that many, if not most, server configurations never max out their memory potential. These systems go to their graves with open RAM slots and will never need Optane PMM. Similarly, keep a wary eye on sweeping marketing messages. Yes, Optane PMM may be amazing for the elephantine workloads that could be generated by, say, smart city systems. With cameras running on every corner, and everything from automotive traffic control to retail advertising using those HD video feeds in real time, the need for Optane PMM in such applications may be critical.

But how many of those smart cities exist today?

Perhaps thats an unfair question. After all, do we need to bring up that 640K ought to be enough for anyone? Just because the immediate need for Optane may be limited doesnt mean it will stay that way. And how much easier (and cheaper) will it be to build those smart city systems if appropriate hardware and software solutions are readily available?

Also, modern-day Intel is almost phobic about making statements that cant be amply defended with a ream of citations. The company doesnt know what its customers paid for their RAM or prior platforms, so it cant make statements about case studies showing X% improvement unless the customer hands Intel that information and many enterprises, especially cloud companies, are loathe to disclose their internal platform details.

And while were talking cost of ownership, note that theres more to TCO than per-gigabyte costs. Consider a server running multiple virtual machines. If those VMs are limited by the amount of available system memory and its common for application owners to seize more than enough memory, just in case then it logically follows that increasing system memory will allow for more VMs per server. Potentially, fewer physical servers will be needed to run the same number of VMs, thus providing lower hardware costs, lower energy consumption, lower administration and maintenance, and on and on.

We spoke with Kristie Mann, Intels senior director of product management for persistent memory, and she shared with us some of the few definite statistics now emerging from early Optane PMM adopters.

These stories are cherry picked by Intel, but were presenting them here only to illustrate that results are beginning to creep into the market. Your mileage may vary, and in fact, your business may not need Optane at all today.

Still, non-volatile media suitable for system memory and/or ultra-fast storage was going to reach the market eventually, and Intel appears to have both a viable technology and the muscle to push its adoption. As with the arrival ofmost new technologies, though, adoption will likely come with a lot of resistance and the need for market education.

This is a product unlike anything weve had in the past, said Mann. Youve seen multiple tiers of storage for years. We need to do the same thing with memory because of two things. One, the rate of data generation is increasing very quickly, to the point where businesses cant quickly and adequately process that data and turn it into business insights. And two, the scaling of DRAM capacity is slowing. Weve seen the stretching out of the Moores Law timeframe for CPU architecture, and now were seeing the same thing with DRAM. Add it up, and memory cant keep pace with rising data workloads over the next five years. Thats why we need a two-tier memory system.

Above: Source: Flash Memory Summit 2015

With tiered storage, users need to right-size their SSD capacity, often using it as a sort of cache for hotter data more likely to be sought than the data kept on cold, archival disk media. According to Intel, the same principle applies with memory. Again, this isnt an either/or case of DRAM versus Optane PMM. The two work together, with DRAM serving as the faster cache to Optanes slower but far more capacious mass memory.

The obvious question for businesses follows: How much DRAM do I actually need? Surprisingly, relatively few people know, and the tools to find the answer arent within easy reach.

The answer to this question varies by data set and workload, so its very difficult to provide one-size-fits-all guidance, said Mann. Were working on building some new tools from our existing internal tools. We can check cache miss rates, latency, bandwidth all these real-time things we can analyze while a workload is running. But our tools are made for engineers, not the average customer. So, over the next couple quarters, well come out with more advanced tools customers can use to help understand their workload characteristics and effectively balance their memory investments.

Above: Source: IDC

Recognizing flash as a strong alternative to hard disk technology, the founders of SanDisk filed a patent on flash-based SSDs in 1989 and shipped the first such drive in 1991. Arguably, the first enterprise SSD arrived in 2008, and you can see from the IDC/Seagate numbers in the above graphic how long it took for SSDs to make a serious dent in the worlds storage totals. System memory may now face a similar adoption trend.

This isnt to say that the game has already gone to Intel. For instance, Samsungs Z-SSD has strong potential, and the 3D XPoint media underlying Optane is being licensed by Micron (perhaps under the name QuantX) to other storage manufacturers.

Intels thesis, though, seems sound. One way or another, its time we had a leap in capability. Now, we just need the results made public to prove that the promise of Optane is real and that we have a clear path forward for a world drowning in data.

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Optane persistent memory: Breakthrough or broken promise? - VentureBeat

Plane crash which killed Paul Hollywoods brother-in-law is still a mystery and may never be solved, rules c – The Sun

A PLANE crash which killed Paul Hollywood's brother-in-law may never be explained, an inquest heard today.

Simon Moores, 62, the brother of Bake Off star Hollywood's estranged wife Alex, was found dead on a mountainside by rescuers after his light plane crashed in Spain on January 9.



Mr Moores and fellow pilot David Hockings were flying the aircraft back from Portugal to Kent when the crash happened.

The Piper III single-engine aircraft, owned by Mr Hockings, had been due to make a stopover in northern Spain.

Spanish rescuers found the wreckage and recovered the bodies of the two pilots on Hernio mountain south-west of San Sebastian in heavy cloud.

Dad-of-two Mr Moores had posted a photo of mountains taken from the plane's cockpit on Twitter at 9.25am, about three-and-a-half hours before the crash.

Days before the flight he had posted a picture of the aircraft with the caption "looking good".

At an inquest today at Canterbury Magistrates Court in Kent, coroner Ian Gouldroup said the reasons behind the crash were uncertain.

Spanish locals told the inquest they'd heard the sound of the aircraft's engine through the fog, followed by a loud bang and then silence.

Coroner Mr Gouldroup said: "At 1.14pm, Echhert Schlur was doing work at the town hall in the area. He heard and saw the light plane visible among clouds.

"He said about 30 seconds later he saw the plane descend and then he heard a loud noise.

We will never know if it was a plane fault or pilot error

"At about 1.10pm, Mabrie Asmendi was standing next to his dwelling when the noise of an engine approached. There was dense fog covering the valley and the valley opposite.

"When the plane approached the mountain he heard the impact and the engine sound stopped. He called the authorities and explained what had happened.

"The next day he went to the accident site to help and they asked him to leave."

Citing poor evidence and unreliable translations from Spanish documents, the coroner concluded the reason for Mr Moores' death was "unascertained".

Mr Gouldroup said: "We have so little evidence. We dont know whether there was an engine problem or a mechanical fault. We dont know why the accident occurred.

"The cause of death is unascertained. We will never know if it was a plane fault or pilot error.

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"This will be the end unless the family bring forward civil proceedings in Spain."

There were no members of Mr Moore's family at the inquest.

An inquest into the death of Mr Hockings, of Herstmonceux, East Sussex, is being held separately.





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Plane crash which killed Paul Hollywoods brother-in-law is still a mystery and may never be solved, rules c - The Sun

World’s Smallest MRI Machine Means We Can Now Scan Individual Atoms

Researchers have created a version of an MRI machine that's so scaled down, it can capture detailed images of individual atoms.

MRI for Ants Atoms

Magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) machines are great for creating detailed images of a person’s internal organs and tissues.

Using magnets and radio waves, the machines temporarily change how the billions of protons in the person’s body spin. Then they measure and image energy released by these protons once they return to their normal state.

Now, researchers have created a version of an MRI machine that’s so scaled down, it images individual atoms — and the device could help usher in the era of quantum computing.

Honey, I Shrunk the MRI

For their study, which was published on Monday in the journal Nature Physics, researchers from the United States and South Korea attached magnetized iron atoms to the tip of a scanning tunneling microscope, a device used to image and probe individual atoms.

They then swept the microscope’s tip over iron and titanium atoms they’d placed on a magnesium oxide surface. This subjected the atoms to a magnetic field that disrupted their electrons. The team then hit the atoms with a radio wave pulse, and the system imaged the energy the electrons subsequently released.

Unprecedented View

The researchers believe this new nanoscale imaging technique could lead to the development of new materials and drugs, as well as the creation of better quantum computing systems.

“We can now see something that we couldn’t see before,” researcher Christopher Lutz told The New York Times. “So our imagination can go to a whole bunch of new ideas that we can test out with this technology.”

READ MORE: World’s smallest MRI performed on single atoms [Institute for Basic Science]

More on quantum computing: Russian Scientists Used a Quantum Computer to Turn Back Time

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World’s Smallest MRI Machine Means We Can Now Scan Individual Atoms

NASA’s Orion Crew Capsule Aced Its Abort System Test

NASA tested its Orion spacecraft's Launch Abort System (LAS) on Tuesday — and it seems the astronaut escape plan worked exactly as hoped.

Orion Exit Strategy

Before NASA can attempt to send astronauts back to the Moon, it needs to know they have a way to GTFO of harm’s way if something goes wrong during the trip.

To that end, the space agency tested its Orion spacecraft’s Launch Abort System (LAS) on Tuesday — and it seems NASA’s astronaut escape plan works exactly as hoped.

Mission Aborted

To start the three-minute-long Ascent Abort-2 test, NASA launched an Orion crew module on a modified Peacekeeper missile built by Northrop Grumman.

Once the pair reached an altitude of about 9.6 kilometers (6 miles), the abort sequence triggered. This sent the crew module blasting away from the rocket and on its journey to splash down in the Atlantic Ocean.

Moving Forward

NASA’s now rounding up the 12 data recorders the crew capsule ejected during its descent so it can analyze the data to confirm that everything went as planned.

At first glance, however, it appears we’re now one step closer to returning humans to the Moon.

“It was a very smooth liftoff,” Orion Program Manager Mark Kirasich said in a press release. “By all first accounts, it was magnificent.”

READ MORE: NASA performs successful test of Orion spacecraft launch abort crew escape system [TechCrunch]

More on Orion: Congress Denies NASA Request for More Moon Mission Money

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NASA’s Orion Crew Capsule Aced Its Abort System Test

Facebook Is Finally Fighting Its Pseudoscience “Miracle Cure” Content Problem

Facebooks is changing how it ranks

There’s an entire spectrum of lies on social media. On one side, there’s the generally inane: Pokémon was designed for Satanists or FCC Chairman Ajit Pai tried to date a porn star.

And then there are lies that have the potential to literally kill.

Falling into this latter category are the spammy “miracle cures” for everything from cancer to autism that spread like wildfire on sites like Facebook. These “treatments” are ineffective at best and deadly at worst. Now, Facebook is finally trying to do something about them.

On Tuesday, Facebook published a blog post regarding the bogus health content that is now pervasive on the site.

“People come together on Facebook to talk about, advocate for, and connect around things like nutrition, fitness, and health issues,” Facebook Product Manager Travis Yeh wrote in the post. “But in order to help people get accurate health information and the support they need, it’s imperative that we minimize health content that is sensational or misleading.”

To that end, the company updated its ranking algorithms to place two kinds of content lower in people’s News Feeds:

– Sensationalist health posts that make misleading claims or tout “miracle cures,” and

– Posts that use health-related claims to promote products or services, such as weight-loss pills.

As far as sensationalist health posts go, ones hawking bogus weight-loss pills fall on the relatively benign end of the spectrum. But Facebook’s also rife with posts encouraging people to forgo proven cancer treatments in favor of worthless home remedies. Incredibly dangerous “autism cures” advising parents to force their children to drink chlorine dioxide, which is essentially industrial bleach, are also popular with Facebook’s users.

[Yeah, you read that correctly: Drinking bleach.]

And do we really need to mention the countless anti-vaccine posts and groups that are contributing to outbreaks of diseases like measles worldwide?

Given the far-reaching implications of this shady health content, Facebook is now under increasing pressure to do something about it — meaning if its newly announced ranking changes can’t effectively stem the medical misinformation tide, it’s going to need to find something else (or someone else) that can.

READ MORE: Facebook, YouTube Overrun With Bogus Cancer-Treatment Claims [The Wall Street Journal]

More on Facebook: Congress Is Deciding Whether to Break up Facebook, Google

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Facebook Is Finally Fighting Its Pseudoscience “Miracle Cure” Content Problem

This AI Gives Other AIs Names Like “Ass Federation” And “Hot Pie” Because Robots Can Be Weird Too

Research scientist Janelle Shane trained a naming AI to conjure up new monikers for self-aware spaceships like those in author Iain M. Banks' Culture books.

Ship Shape

Scottish author Iain M. Banks populated his sci-fi Culture book series with humanoid robots, alien races, and artificially intelligent spaceships that chose their own names.

So: Research scientist Janelle Shane thought it would be fun to use those ship names to train a real neural network to — what else? — conjure up new names for self-aware spaceships. The results? Hilarious. Puzzling. Generally? Great.

Name Game

Shane is the same scientist responsible for creating the neural network that bestowed awesome names like “Peanutbutterjiggles” and “Bones of the Master” upon shelter kittens.

This new naming AI is a variation on that one, but instead of training the base neural network, OpenAI’s GPT-2, on cat names, she used a list of 236 spaceship names from Banks’ Culture series.

Ass Federation

Shane lists dozens of the names churned out by the AI on her website, so you’ll have to head there to check them all out, but some of our favorites:

– Friendly Head Crusher
– Mini Cactus Cake Fight
– Happy to Groom Any Animals You Want

But if we’re naming a self-aware spaceship, it’d be hard to pass up the opportunity to go with the complete head-scratcher that is Someone Did Save Your Best Cookie By Post-Apocalyptic Means.

READ MORE: This AI is so goddamn smart, it can name other AIs [The Next Web]

More on naming AI: This Neural Network Gives Kittens A+ Names Like “Mr Sinister”

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This AI Gives Other AIs Names Like “Ass Federation” And “Hot Pie” Because Robots Can Be Weird Too

Here’s How You Can Watch Today’s Total Solar Eclipse

California's Exploratorium has teamed up with NASA to broadcast a livestream of the total solar eclipse over parts of South America.

Heads up: For approximately four minutes this afternoon, the Moon will block out the Sun over parts of South America — but you don’t need to be in Chile or Argentina to see the stunning spectacle.

California’s Exploratorium has teamed up with NASA to broadcast a livestream of the eclipse via the video linked below. The coverage will begin at 3 p.m. ET, with the eclipse expected to take place between 4:38 p.m. and 4:44 p.m. ET.

If you happen to live within the eclipse’s path, make sure you fight the urge to look directly at the Sun during it as doing so could permanently damage your eyes. Which, yes, happens to people. Quite a bit.

Instead, you’ll want to use your lunch break today to procure a pair of special eclipse glasses. But if that’s not possible, a sheet of paper with a pinhole poked through it is, of course, an acceptable DIY alternative.

READ MORE: Watch Today’s Total Solar Eclipse Right Here [Gizmodo]

More on eclipses: Watch: What Happened to Solar Power in the US During the Eclipse

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This Room-Sized Device Could Create Artificial Gravity in Space

Researchers built a device small room-sized device that spins willing participants on a giant platform to mimic the effect of Earth-like gravity in space.

Weight Gain

You’ve probably seen one featured in a science fiction movie, including “2001: A Space Odyssey” — massive centrifuge-like space stations that spin around a center point to create the sensation of artificial gravity for off-world travelers.

While we have yet to build such a large system in open space, researchers from University of Colorado at Boulder have decided to miniaturize the effect instead, with a device small enough to fit inside a room that spins participants to mimic the effect of Earth-like gravity.

Spin Zone

Creating the illusion of gravity could be of great benefit to astronauts struggling with the not-yet-fully-understood effects of microgravity for months at a time.

“The point of our work is to try to get more people to think that maybe artificial gravity isn’t so crazy,” Kathrine Bretl, a graduate student involved in the project said according to a statement. “Maybe it has a place outside of science fiction.”

Vomit Comet

Unfortunately, motion sickness is still as much of a thing here on Earth as it is in space — one of the reasons why scientists have shied away from the idea in the past. The team decided to put that to the test and invite volunteers to spin on their centrifuge for 10 vomit-inducing sessions.

The results were promising: at 17 revolutions per minute, the effect became tolerable over time.

“As far as we can tell, essentially anyone can adapt to this stimulus,” aerospace engineer Torin Clark, who led the team said.

READ MORE: Artificial gravity breaks free from science fiction [University of Colorado at Boulder]

More on the effects of microgravity: Zero Gravity Causes Worrisome Changes In Astronauts’ Brains

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This Room-Sized Device Could Create Artificial Gravity in Space

Billionaires Are Dead Serious About Moving Factories to Space

To some, collecting resources from other planets or asteroids instead of using up the Earth could be the key to ensuring that we — and our planet — survive.

Space Industries

It sounds like science fiction, but the idea of moving heavy industries off Earth seems far less far-fetched ever before.

Collecting resources from other planets or asteroids instead of using up what little we have left on Earth could be the key to ensuring that human beings survive, Discover Magazine reports.

“The solar system can support a billion times greater industry than we have on Earth,” Phil Metzger, a planetary scientist at the University of Central Florida, told Discover. “When you go to vastly larger scales of civilization, beyond the scale that a planet can support, then the types of things that civilization can do are incomprehensible to us.”

Investing in Space

As Earth-based resources dwindle, the population increases — and something has to give. At least, that’s the argument behind a new school of companies that have cropped up over the last decade or so, trying to become pioneers of space resource gathering.

For instance, Planetary Resources Inc. has collected tens of millions in funding to develop asteroid mining technologies. But financial troubles meant that the company had to delay its first asteroid prospecting mission indefinitely.

Billionaire Blue Origin and Amazon CEO Jeff Bezos is all-in as well.

“The reason we’ve got to go to space, in my view, is to save the Earth,” Bezos said during the announcement of his space company’s lunar lander last month.

“A very fundamental long-range problem is that we will run out of energy on Earth,” Bezos said at the event. “This is just arithmetic. It will happen.”

Even NASA has recently chosen to invest millions of dollars in tech concepts that could help us explore lunar crates and mining asteroids.

Not only physical resources could become the solution for an overburdened planet. Solar power stations in space could beam near-limitless energy back to Earth — a plan that China is already working to put into action.

Greenpeace 2.0

But not everybody is of the same mind: a group of scientists came together to sign a proposal calling for more than 85 percent of the solar system to be protected from human development.

“If we don’t think about this now, we will go ahead as we always have, and in a few hundred years we will face an extreme crisis, much worse than we have on Earth now,” Martin Elvis, senior astrophysicist at the Smithsonian Astrophysical Observatory and lead author of the proposal told The Guardian. “Once you’ve exploited the solar system, there’s nowhere left to go.”

Baby Steps

Before space manufacturing and mining become reality, there’s still a lot of work to be done as scientists have only made incremental steps towards that future so far. Just five years ago, California-based startup Made In Space became the first company to 3D print an object in zero gravity.

The same company scored a major contract with NASA in 2018 to develop a “hybrid metal manufacturing system for space exploration.” The idea is to print parts using aerospace-grade metals like titanium and aluminum.

And Japanese space agency JAXA recently managed to land its Hayabusa2 spacecraft on a tiny asteroid, even shooting a bulletand dropping a bomb — at its surface to collect samples.

These efforts however are still a far cry from a future in which asteroid mining could support human civilizations in deep space. We haven’t even figured out which nation will get to call those resources their own — an issue that’s bound to conjure up some political uneasiness.

But time is running out — climate change and rapidly-depleting resources are forcing us to look beyond our home planet. Hopefully we can make the transition before it’s too late.

READ MORE: Made in Space: Why Earth’s Industries Might One Day Leave Our Planet [Discover Magazine]

More on space mining: NASA Funds $2M Study to See if We Could Live in Moon Pits

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