News Article | May 19, 2017
BERLIN--(BUSINESS WIRE)--Le principal événement d’Europe concernant l’IdO sera de retour à Berlin dans seulement 2 semaines et il y a plein de domaines gratuits dans lesquels vous pourrez vous impliquer. Les 1er et 2 juin prochains, l’événement IoT Tech Expo explorera l’ensemble de l’écosystème de l'IdO, présentant les toutes dernières innovations technologiques dans le cadre de 6 thématiques de conférences, une zone pour les startups, 2 événements coimplantés couvrant la Blockchain et l’IA, une exposition présentant les toutes dernières innovations et la rencontre sur l’IdO. À savoir « Developing for the IoT » (Développer pour l’IdO), « IoT Innovations & Technologies » (Innovations et technologies pour l'IdO) et « Blockchain Technologies » (Technologies Blockchain) ; il s’agit d’une formidable occasion d’explorer le domaine plus large de l’IdO et de la Blockchain, et d’entendre tout un éventail de leaders de l’industrie travaillant pour des marques comme, entre autres, Volvo CE, Sigfox, Visa, Coca-Cola, BMW, Bluetooth, ESA, Allianz, Daimler, GSK, Metro et Johnson Controls. Avec plus de 200 exposants, dont les startups les plus innovantes, vous aurez l’occasion de voir les dernières technologies pour l’IdO, la Blockchain et l’IA en action, incluant, entre autres, les drones, les réfrigérateurs intelligents, la technologie de lecture des pensées, l’IA, l’impression 3D, la RV et la maintenance prédictive. Coimplantée avec la Blockchain Expo et l’AI Expo, vous pourrez y explorer de nombreux domaines nouveaux et enthousiasmants incluant, entre autres, l’apprentissage automatique, les robots, l'apprentissage profond et les analyses de données, couvrant des marchés verticaux allant de la finance à la musique en passant par l’immobilier, les soins de santé, les assurances et les administrations. Venez à la rencontre sur l’IdO (le 1er juin de 16h00 à 18h00) rencontrer des personnes ayant des affinités, construire des réseaux, partager des connaissances et développer de nouvelles opportunités commerciales. L’objectif est d’établir une communauté de personnes et d’organisations souhaitant collaborer, explorer et innover. Les sujets abordés incluent Industrie 4.0, le succès des startups et la Blockchain. Pourquoi ne pas vous y joindre ? Ce sont juste 7 des domaines gratuits auxquels vous pourrez participer lors de l’événement IoT Tech Expo Europe à Berlin les 1er et 2 juin ! Il vous suffit de vous inscrire pour obtenir votre laissez-passer GRATUIT pour l’exposition et faire l’expérience de tout ce qui vient d’être mentionné, et bien plus encore. L’IoT Tech Expo World Series (www.iottechexpo.com) accueille un contenu et des discussions de haut niveau, présentant et explorant les toutes dernières innovations dans le domaine de l'Internet des Objets (IdO). Elle réunit des secteurs clés, dont ceux de la fabrication, des transports, de la santé, de la logistique, du gouvernement, de l'énergie et de l'automobile.
News Article | May 17, 2017
The James Webb Space Telescope, which is reported to be the most advanced telescope to be put into space ever, is entering its final stage of testing on Earth. The telescope is a joint venture between the NASA, ESA (the European Space Agency) and the Canadian Space Agency. The world's most advanced space observatory will not replace the Hubble Space Telescope, but will be more like its scientific successor as their capabilities are not identical, according to Nasa.
News Article | May 20, 2017
On April 19 of this year, five major wildlife protection groups petitioned the United States Fish and Wildlife Service to list the giraffe (Giraffa camelopardalis) as an endangered species. As the petition asserted, “the giraffe has suffered a major reduction in population size across its range primarily due to habitat loss, commercial overutilization, and severe poaching, and such decline continues unabated.” If the Fish and Wildlife Service agrees to list the giraffe, a set of legal tools will become available to protect this iconic species. But how would listing in the U.S. help this African mammal, whose population numbers in the wild have dipped below 100,000? While extinction can be a natural process, the current rate of extinction is anything but. Scientists estimate that at least 99 out of 100 species extinctions in the world today are the result of human action. Although people rarely intend to drive species into oblivion, as with the giraffe, they do so through the destruction of habitat, poaching and legal hunting. As the petition notes, “[g]iraffes once occupied much of the savanna and savanna woodlands of Africa…. [It] has undergone a 36 to 40 percent population decline over the past 30 years.” More than a century ago, scientists began to notice the disappearance of once prominent species around the world. The American passenger pigeon, the Carolina parakeet and the Great Auk – once well-established in North America – disappeared. Other species like the American bison and many kinds of whales had once played central roles in important ecosystems but had been reduced to small remnant populations. The existence of species is important to people for many reasons. Sometimes species provide clues for the development of medicines. Often they play a fundamental role in maintaining the functioning of ecosystems on which people depend. As Aldo Leopold – perhaps America’s most famous naturalist – noted, What would you say to a child who saw a giraffe in a book and asked where giraffes lived? Would you be comfortable saying they’re all gone? In 1964, the International Union for the Conservation of Nature (IUCN) began tracking the conservation status of species on its “Red List.” Although the IUCN provides information only about the status of species, this is the first step in helping to limit extinction because it allows conservation efforts to be directed where they’re most needed. A few years later in the United States, the federal government began keeping an official list of species in danger of extinction – what we call endangered species – and species likely to become endangered within the foreseeable future – threatened species. The Endangered Species Act (ESA), passed in 1973, goes further than just identifying imperiled species. Under its terms, listed species are protected from actions “authorized, funded or carried out” by the federal government that may jeopardize their continued existence or adversely affect their essential habitat. Species members are also protected from direct harm by any person. Commerce in species protected by the ESA is generally a crime. The purpose of the ESA is the “conservation” of protected species. In practice, that means bringing the species back to the point where it no longer requires the protection of the ESA. The law’s goal is not to preserve tiny populations on the brink of extinction but to recover species populations that are resilient enough to survive the bad luck which is so often part of living on the planet. Listing is the public, administrative process whereby a species can become entitled to protection under the Endangered Species Act. It centers around one question: Is this creature or plant in danger of extinction? At the listing stage, the federal government can consider only scientific evidence in making its decision. Anyone can initiate the listing process via petition. Evidence suggests the ESA works. A recent report in the Endangered Species Bulletin noted that of the 78 species first listed under the federal precursor to the Endangered Species Act in 1967, only four have been officially declared extinct after half a century. Many others, such as the California condor, the grizzly bear and the whooping crane, have seen remarkable recovery progress. Some, including the bald eagle, have even been removed from the list.
News Article | May 22, 2017
The Ecological Society of America recognizes Michael J.M. McTavish and Julienne E. NeSmith for outstanding student research presentations at the 101st Annual Meeting of the Society in Fort Lauderdale, Florida in August 2016. ESA will present the awards during the 2017 Annual Meeting in Portland, Oregon. The awards ceremony will take place on Monday, August 7, at 8 AM in the Oregon Ballroom at the Oregon Convention Center. Murray F. Buell had a long and distinguished record of service and accomplishment in the Ecological Society of America. Among other things, he ascribed great importance to the participation of students in meetings and to excellence in the presentation of papers. To honor his selfless dedication to the younger generation of ecologists, the Murray F. Buell Award for Excellence in Ecology is given to a student for the outstanding oral paper presented at the ESA Annual Meeting. Lucy Braun, an eminent plant ecologist and one of the charter members of the Society, studied and mapped the deciduous forest regions of eastern North America and described them in her classic book, The Deciduous Forests of Eastern North America. To honor her, the E. Lucy Braun Award for Excellence in Ecology is given to a student for the outstanding poster presentation at the ESA Annual Meeting. Papers and posters are judged on the significance of ideas, creativity, quality of methodology, validity of conclusions drawn from results, and clarity of presentation. Award panel members honored Michael J.M. McTavish with the Buell Award for his presentation "Selective granivory of exotic earthworms within commercial grass seed mixes: Implications for seeding-based restoration in invaded ecosystems." McTavish is a doctoral candidate working with Professor Stephen D. Murphy in the School of Environment, Resources & Sustainability at the University of Waterloo in Ontario, Canada. The invasion of earthworms into previously earthworm-free soils is instigating sweeping change in the ecosystems of eastern North America. This has brought interest in the earthworms' appetite for seeds and how they may impact ecological restoration projects that add seeds to soil. McTavish investigated the characteristics of commercial grass seeds favored by the exotic earthworm Lumbricus terrestris. He observed how earthworm activity affected the biomass of different types of grass in outdoor, enclosed experiments called mesocosms, which simulate natural environments under controlled conditions. He found that earthworms preferred smaller seeds that had been coated to increase water uptake, resulting in decreased grass biomass in mesocosms planted with coated seeds. The judges felt that McTavish showed excellence in presenting and answering his experimental questions, particularly praising his distribution of text and pictures. His experimental results formed a comprehensive and important story. Panel members honored Julienne E. NeSmith with the Braun Award for her poster "Interactive effects of soil moisture and plant invasion on pine tree survival." NeSmith is a graduate student working with Associate Professor of Agronomy S. Luke Flory in the School of Natural Resources and Environment at the University of Florida in Gainesville. NeSmith investigated the separate and combined effects of drought and exotic grass invasion on the survival of native loblolly (Pinus tied) and slash (Pinus elliottii) pine in central Florida by manipulating environmental conditions in experimental garden plots. Cogongrass (Imperata cylindrica) is an aggressively invasive, highly flammable perennial grass which arrived in the southeastern United States in the early twentieth century. Drought and cogongrass invasion each separately decreased survival of both pine species, but invasion only exacerbated the effects of drought on the survival of loblolly pine. The presence of cogongrass offset the effects of drought on slash pine survival in the experimental garden plots. NeSmith attributed the greater survival of slash pine under drought conditions to higher soil moisture and humidity in invaded plots than non-invaded plots. Judges recognized NeSmith's ability to explain the experimental details and the management implications of her results and enjoyed her enthusiasm for the project. Environmental scientists from 50 U.S. states, U. S. territories, and countries around the world will converge on Portland, Oregon this August for the 102nd Annual Meeting of the Ecological Society of America. Five thousand attendees are expected to gather for nearly four thousand scientific presentations on breaking research and new ecological concepts at the Oregon Convention Center on August 6th through 11th, 2017. ESA invites reporters and institutional public information officers to attend the Annual Meeting for free. To apply, please contact ESA Communications Officer Liza Lester directly at firstname.lastname@example.org. The Ecological Society of America, founded in 1915, is the world's largest community of professional ecologists and a trusted source of ecological knowledge, committed to advancing the understanding of life on Earth. The 10,000 member Society publishes five journals and a membership bulletin and broadly shares ecological information through policy, media outreach, and education initiatives. The Society's Annual Meeting attracts 4,000 attendees and features the most recent advances in ecological science. Visit the ESA website at http://www. .
News Article | May 15, 2017
This image from the NASA/ESA Hubble Space Telescope shows the unusual galaxy IRAS 06076-2139, found in the constellation Lepus (The Hare). Hubble's Wide Field Camera 3 (WFC3) and Advanced Camera for Surveys (ACS) instruments observed the galaxy from a distance of 500 million light-years. This particular object stands out from the crowd by actually being composed of two separate galaxies rushing past each other at about 2 million kilometers (1,243,000 miles) per hour. This speed is most likely too fast for them to merge and form a single galaxy. However, because of their small separation of only about 20,000 light-years, the galaxies will distort one another through the force of gravity while passing each other, changing their structures on a grand scale. Such galactic interactions are a common sight for Hubble, and have long been a field of study for astronomers. The intriguing behaviors of interacting galaxies take many forms; galactic cannibalism, galaxy harassment and even galaxy collisions. The Milky Way itself will eventually fall victim to the latter, merging with the Andromeda Galaxy in about 4.5 billion years. The fate of our galaxy shouldn't be alarming though: while galaxies are populated by billions of stars, the distances between individual stars are so large that hardly any stellar collisions will occur. Please follow SpaceRef on Twitter and Like us on Facebook.
News Article | May 19, 2017
ESA’s Susanne Altenburger training with mobiPV at the European Astronaut Centre in Cologne, Germany. Credit: ESA Working inside the International Space Station is sometimes like assembling complex furniture but with the tools and paper instructions continually floating out of reach. Astronauts also face situations unforeseen by the instructions. Communication delays with ground control to troubleshoot these occasions mean even more valuable time is lost. Now, 'mobiPV' is looking to help. Developed by ESA, this 'mobile procedure viewer' uses software on an android smartphone that allows astronauts to perform manual tasks hands-free while connecting them in real time to mission control via video, voice and text. In addition to the smartphone strapped to their wrist, astronauts are equipped with a head-mounted camera, an audio headset, and a tablet as an alternate display option. When problems arise, the astronaut can switch on the camera to capture the situation and immediately receive expert feedback from Earth. ESA astronaut Andreas Mogensen first tried out mobiPV during NASA's underwater space simulation in September 2014, and during his mission to the Space Station in September 2015. Those trials led to fewer cables and a major software redesign to allow multiple ground stations to link to the astronauts. The software was improved again following a July 2016 test by ESA astronaut Matthias Maurer during NASA's latest aquatic venture. With the prospect of saving a significant amount of time, mobiPV will become a standard part of the Space Station. ESA astronaut Paolo Nespoli will be next to try it out during his mission later this year, after which ESA can offer it to all Station partners. As with all technology, it will be continually updated based on feedback. Its developers are already looking to add augmented reality headsets for a richer and more efficient experience. Space is by no means mobiPV's final frontier. It needs only an Internet connection and is adaptable to different procedures and environments, making it a lower-cost and easy way of connecting ground controllers to remote teams. Subsea, military and other industries can benefit from the time and cost saved by mobiPV – though there is no word yet on a household version helping with those sets of flatpack furniture. Explore further: Return to the underwater Space Station
News Article | May 18, 2017
Service animals help owners navigate daily tasks and often have years of training to help them serve disability-related functions. However, little consensus exists when it comes to the certification of "emotional support animals" (ESAs). These animals usually have little or no specific training, which poses a challenge for mental health professionals who are asked to certify them. Now, researchers at the University of Missouri have conducted a survey to examine what techniques and instruments mental health professionals are using to aid in their determinations of whether certification of an ESA is appropriate. Researcher recommendations could help mental health practitioners make better judgments when certifying ESAs and steer policy-making decisions for housing and travel sectors. "ESAs are legally different from service animals, such as guide dogs," said Cassie Boness, a graduate student in clinical psychology in the MU College of Arts and Science. "An ESA usually provides companionship, relieves loneliness and sometimes helps with anxiety or depression. Although emotional support animals can be pets, they're not considered pets under the law and sometimes special accommodations must be afforded to individuals who have ESAs. Because of this requirement, owners seek out ways to get their pets certified without thinking about the ramifications of their actions." Federal and state laws regulating ESAs often are convoluted and ever-changing. For example, landlords who normally prohibit pets must allow ESAs and waive any fees or pet deposits. Airlines are required to allow ESAs to accompany their owners in the main cabins of aircraft. As a result, it can be implied that some patients who claim they need ESAs are doing so to "buck the system," causing a dilemma for mental health professionals who often are tasked with certifying these animals, Boness says. Boness, working with Jeffrey Younggren, a forensic psychologist and clinical professor at MU, surveyed 87 mental health professionals, 31 percent of whom have made ESA recommendations. Survey participants were required to read ESA policies, including the Department of Transportation's requirements for airline travel. Participants then answered questions about the certifying process. The survey demonstrated that both clinical and forensic practitioners are making ESA recommendations; both groups believe certifying ESAs is appropriate for treating patients. Results and recommendations from the study indicate that clinicians should not certify ESAs and doing so can trigger ethical and legal challenges, including a pending case in Colorado, Younggren says. Based on their findings, Boness and Younggren recommend that: "A clinical practitioner's primary goal is treatment; often, personal relationships with their clients can lead to biased assessments and a willingness to certify ESAs," Younggren said. "Forensic psychologists, such as those who give expert testimony on mental capacity in court, often use comprehensive methods to assess patients. These mental health professionals generally don't have relationships with those they are assessing, are much more objective and are likely to certify ESAs correctly."
News Article | May 15, 2017
“They say once you grow crops somewhere, you have officially ‘colonized’ it. So technically, I colonized Mars. In your face, Neil Armstrong!” -Andy Weir In the early 1960s, humanity began launching spacecraft to Mars, hoping to find out what the red planet was truly like. While early images revealed a heavily cratered surface, similar to that of the Moon, that turned out to be reflective of only a portion of the surface. Mars contains dust storms, basins, extinct volcanoes and the largest chasm of any planet in the Solar System. Since landing on Mars, we’ve now discovered intricate surface features, including evidence for frozen water, atmospheric water vapor, and even flowing, briny surface water in places. Where there’s water and the right organic ingredients, there should be life, right? After half a century of inconclusive results, ESA’s ExoMars Rover and NASA’s Mars 2020 may finally have the right stuff to find out for sure! The evidence is circumstantial but suggestive, and after a generation of not knowing, the long-awaited answer may finally be at hand.
News Article | May 19, 2017
BERLIN--(BUSINESS WIRE)--Europe’s leading IoT event will return to Berlin in just 2 weeks and there are plenty of free areas which you can get involved with. Taking place on the 1-2nd June, the IoT Tech Expo event will explore the entire IoT ecosystem, introducing the latest technology innovations across 6 conference tracks, a start-up zone, 2 co-located events covering Blockchain and AI, an exhibition showcasing the latest innovations and the IoT meetup. Here are just 7 of the free aspects at the event which you can get involved with: Namely, ‘Developing for the IoT’, ‘IoT Innovations & Technologies’ and ‘Blockchain Technologies’, this is a fantastic chance to explore the wider area of the IoT and Blockchain, and hear from a range of industry leaders from brands including Volvo CE, Sigfox, Visa, Coca-Cola, BMW, Bluetooth, ESA, Allianz, Daimler, GSK, Metro, Johnson Controls & more. 2. Keynote Panel: How is the IoT shaping consumer-brand relationships in retail & beyond? Within the IoT Innovations conference, senior representatives from Coca-Cola, Visa, Benetton Group and Wingu will explore how IoT can create a direct brand-consumer channel, and the potential it holds for multi-way communication. How does this evolving landscape affect retailer’s relationship with their customers, both in store and digitally? June 2nd – 3:10pm. With 200+ exhibitors, including the most innovative start-ups, you will get to see the latest IoT, Blockchain and AI technologies in action, including drones, smart fridges, mind-reading technology, AI, 3D printing, VR, predictive maintenance and more. Co-located with the Blockchain Expo and AI Expo, you will be able to explore a host of new and exciting areas including machine learning, bots, deep learning and data analytics, covering verticals from finance to music, real estate to healthcare, insurance to government and more. Meet with like-minded individuals at the IoT meetup (June 1st – 4-6pm), network, share knowledge and develop new business opportunities. The aim is to build a community of people and organisations willing to collaborate, explore and innovate. Topics include Industry 4.0, start-up success and Blockchain. Why not join? 6. T-Systems, Z-Wave, tado°, Navigant and Scandic Hotels explore how you can create a seamless connected building ecosystem With an eye-catching line-up, the speakers discuss what businesses should consider when choosing a connected building or home platform and what role partnerships, cloud and mesh systems will play. June 1st – 2:10pm. 7. A Message from Space: Funding and Support for Down-to-Earth Problem Solvers The European Space Agency will present the capabilities that space could contribute to IoT services on Earth, in addition to introducing opportunities for funding and support to assess customer driven service concepts. Not to be missed. June 2nd – 3:50pm. These are just 7 of the free areas you can get involved with at the IoT Tech Expo Europe in Berlin on the 1-2nd June! All you need to do is register for your FREE expo pass to experience all of the above and more. Click here to view the full agenda at the IoT Tech Expo Europe. To learn more about the IoT Tech Expo World Series, visit the corresponding sites: For speaking, sponsorship and exhibitor enquiries please contact the team at email@example.com or call on +44 (0) 117 980 9023. The IoT Tech Expo World Series (www.iottechexpo.com) hosts top level content and discussion, introducing and exploring the latest innovations in the Internet of Things arena. It brings together key industries including Manufacturing, Transport, Health, Logistics, Government, Energy and Automotive.
News Article | May 20, 2017
The star cluster Hodge 301 is 20 million to 25 million years old. Hodge 301 is home to many aging, red supergiant stars, indicating the cluster is older. Roughly 40 massive stars already have exploded as supernovas. The expanding wave of debris is slamming into gas ejected by stars in R136, creating a ridge of star formation between the two clusters. The fledgling stars are embedded in dense gas and cannot be seen. 30 Doradus is the brightest, nearby star-forming region and home to the most massive stars in our cosmic neighborhood of about 25 galaxies. The nebula is close enough to Earth that Hubble can resolve individual stars, giving astronomers important information about the stars' birth and evolution. 30 Doradus resides 170,000 light-years away in the Large Magellanic Cloud, a small, satellite galaxy of our Milky Way. Credits - NASA, ESA, D. Lennon and E. Sabbi (ESA/STScI), J. Anderson, S. E. de Mink, R. van der Marel, T. Sohn, and N. Walborn (STScI), N. Bastian (Excellence Cluster, Munich), L. Bedin (INAF, Padua), E. Bressert (ESO), P. Crowther (University of Sheffield), A. de Koter (University of Amsterdam), C. Evans (UKATC/STFC, Edinburgh), A. Herrero (IAC, Tenerife), N. Langer (AifA, Bonn), I. Platais (JHU), and H. Sana (University of Amsterdam) Please follow SpaceRef on Twitter and Like us on Facebook.