(Mirror Daily, United States) – Albert Einstein’s recently published travel diaries unveiled that he shared many racist views in his youth.
The famous physicist documented his trips to Asia and the Middle East from October 1922 to March 1923.
In the diaries, he describes China as “a peculiar herd-like nation” that had turned its people into “automatons.” He jokes about Chinese men’s looks not being very different than Chinese women’s appearance, while not being able to understand why so many men fall for Chinese women’s “fatal attraction.”
Einstein truly believed that China was made of “industrious, filthy, obtuse people,” according to The Travel Diaries of Albert Einstein: The Far East, Palestine, and Spain, 1922-1923.
In Egypt, the Father of Modern Physics was shocked by the “Levantines of every shade” boarding the ship he was on, whom he compared to creatures that “spewed from hell.” About the people in Colombo, Ceylon, he said they were living in “great filth and considerable stench” while doing little and needing little.
Einstein’s Travel Diaries Also Reflect a Change in Views
In 1933, the Jewish scientist emigrated to the U.S. to escape Nazism in Europe. Later in life, he became interested in civil rights and called racism a “disease” of the white men and women.
The diaries document the view changes on race of the great physicist. While the documents were not designed to be made public, some people might be offended by the views expressed there.
In 1933, Einstein criticized the segregation in America at a time when blacks and whites had separate cinemas, schools, and places in public transportation. He soon became a member of the National Association for the Advancement of Colored People.
Some people claim he once said that there were few differences between the way Nazis were treating Jews and the way the U.S. was treating black people.
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(Mirror Daily, United States) – Southern Africa’s iconic baobab trees, that can live for several millennia, are facing a massive die-off, and researchers blame rising temperatures for it.
One baobab tree, which managed to reach the age of 1,500, is known in Africa as Homasi or Grootboom, which means “big tree” in the language Afrikaans. In 2004, however, the ancient tree collapsed unexpectedly.
No one had expected that since, during the previous spring, the tree had been in full bloom. In June 2004, its health started to deteriorate until on New Year’s Day in 2005, when the tree died.
The African baobab, with its massive trunk, is one of the planet’s biggest flowering plants. It is a very strange tree as its bare branches can be easily mistaken for its roots which gives it an appearance of an “upside-down tree.”
The mythical tree can reach exceptional ages, but in recent years, the Black continent’s oldest baobabs have faced a massive die-off. Grootboom was just one of seven ancient baobabs that died over just two years.
Baobab Trees Dying One after Another across the World
What’s more, there are 13 ancient baobab trees across the world, and four have collapsed over the last decade. Five more of the oldest known trees are about to die, too.
These large and monumental trees, which can live for 2,000 years or more, were dying one after another,
said Romanian researcher Adrian Patrut who has been studying the phenomenon.
Patrut expressed his disappointment that a generation will witness so many baobab deaths.
Baobab trees’ trunks can grow so large that people can use them as homes, stores, prisons, or chapels. This happens when most of the trunk’s tissue has died and the trunk becomes hollow. Usually, hollow baobabs can grow new stems, which then fuse together and create the hollow space.
It is unclear how old a baobab tree can really live. It was initially estimated that they could live for 5,000 years. Patrut has found the oldest known baobab tree in Zimbabwe, which lived for 2,500 years when it collapsed in 2011.
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(Mirror Daily, United States) – A researcher claims that NASA has been covering up evidence on alien fossils for years. Dr Barry DiGregorio suggests that the footage from NASA’s robotic explorer sent to Mars proves his theory.
DiGregorio accuses the U.S. space agency of hiding the remains of what may seem “soft bodied creatures” in plain sight as Curiosity rover’s pictures show. Curiosity is currently on the Martian surface, constantly beaming back imagery to Earth.
NASA replied to the researcher’s assumption that the shapes he believes are alien fossils are just rock crystals, which Curiosity is analyzing. DiGregorio, on the other hand, insists that such “rock crystals” have not been spotted on Mars to date.
He thinks that what NASA calls rocks are trace fossils of alien creatures. The former University of Buckingham researcher explained that crystals don’t branch or twist, but fossils do.
DiGregorio said he plans to find other scientists that share his views to further study the ‘evidence’. When the study is completed, a full report will be published din a peer-reviewed journal.
NASA Covering Up Martian Alien Life
The study plans to prove that NASA is covering up the existence of an ancient alien race which lived on Mars. The scientist believes that an ancient lake on the Red Planet once hosted alien life. DiGregorio has even accused NASA of “avoiding looking for life.”
The agency is now getting ready for a manned mission to Mars which is scheduled for the 2030s. NASA JPL Curiosity team did not rule out the presence of alien fossils, but added that it is safe not to jump to conclusions after a first impression.
Meanwhile, a British author claims that UFO sightings are in fact U.S. military aircraft. Mark Pilkington, who has been researching UFOs and other unexplained phenomena for decades, accused the CIA and U.S. government of tricking the world into believing that UFOs exist by employing secret technology to make the aircraft look like alien space crafts.
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(Mirror Daily, United States) – NASA’s freshly minted planetary protection officer Lisa Pratt warned that Elon Musk’s Tesla roadster that was launched into space earlier this month and is now heading to Mars may contaminate the Red Planet with our microbes.
Pratt, whose job is to keep the Earth clean from space microbes, said she’s deeply concerned about some private space flight companies’ practice of throwing Earth’s trash into space.
Pratt criticized the tech billionaire and Tesla founder Elon Musk for deploying a Tesla roadster into space as part of a test flight of a Falcon Heavy rocket. The NASA scientist is concerned that, as companies like Musk’s SpaceX have more money on their hands, they will forget about sustainability when it comes to space exploration.
Pratt advocates for a clean solar system that is free of our planet’s junk. According to Space News, Pratt has recently encouraged other NASA scientists to “work closely” in finding a way to prevent “another red Roadster up there in orbit.”
Martian Soil Should Remain Clean
Pratt is confident that alien life exists in our solar system, so she doesn’t want Earth bacteria to kill it. The new planetary protection officer is a professor at Indiana University. Also, she has been analyzing the adaptations of microorganisms in harsh places for over three decades.
She even explored gold mines in Africa to research the bacteria in ultra-hot waters coming out from the planet’s inner layers. She has also documented the adaptations of microbial life living in the extreme temperatures in the Canadian arctic.
Now, Pratt hopes to find microbial life in Mars’ harsh environment as well and doesn’t want a foolish gesture like sending a bacteria-laden sportscar drifting into space spoil the alien bacteria. On Mars, temperatures can hit minus 240 degrees F.
Part of Pratt’s mission is to ensure that the Martian soil remains clean when another NASA rover will land on it, in 2020.
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(Mirror Daily, United States) – Microsoft engineers plan to remove passwords from Windows 10 and come with a more secure method of authentication.
According to several users that have tested the build 17093 of the Insider preview, Microsoft plans to roll out a new feature that would strip its legendary operating system of passwords.
The alternative to passwords is based on an iOS and Android app called Authenticator. The system is available for users that use Windows 10 S and Fast ring. The app will enable Windows users to block or allow any request without the need of a password.
The company hopes that there will soon be no need for passwords in the operating system. In a recent blog post, Microsoft underlined that Windows 10 S will be the first OS to offer a password-free experience.
Also, users that use Windows Hello will notice that passwords are nowhere to be found since they have been removed from the Sign-in options and Unlock screen altogether.
Windows 10 S to Offer First Password-free Experience
To get rid of passwords, you’ll need to properly set the Windows Hello and the Authenticator first. The feature is only available for Windows 10 S because the OS is still in the making and needs to be tested thoroughly before its official release date.
Windows Insiders will be able to offer feedback on the new feature, and depending on positive reviews, the password-less feature will be launched for the masses.
Microsoft also plans to embed the Windows 10 S into Windows 10 under the name of “S Mode”. This means that passwords will be removed for all users. Experts expect the update to be released before the much-anticipated Redstone 4 update.
Microsoft also unveiled plans to add machine learning and artificial intelligence (AI) to its translation software for complex languages like Tamil, Bengali, and Hindi.
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(Mirror Daily, United States) – A group of scientists claim that water can morph into an exotic state called superionic ice if it is exposed to high temperatures and pressures just like on the icy planets Neptune and Uranus.
When in the superionic state, water’s hydrogen ions stay liquid and move inside a solid structure made of oxygen.
The superionic ice was first theorized in 1988, but it is the first time scientists are able to confirm the theory in laboratory conditions. It is also the first time when researchers have evidence that superionic water ice is real.
Lead author Marius Millot said his team used shock compression to push water into the fourth state. Researchers were able to access thermodynamic signatures that water ice starts melting at 5,000 Kelvin and tremendous pressures, which are temperatures close to those on the surface of the Sun.
Our experiments have verified the two main predictions for superionic ice: very high protonic/ionic conductivity within the solid and high melting point,
researchers wrote in a recently published paper.
Superionic Ice Is Real
The team described water’s behavior under such extreme conditions “extraordinary”. The simulations were obtained with help from quantum technology, laser-triggered shock compression, and diamond anvil cells.
They found that superionic ice at room temperature has a crystalline form that has no similarity to normal ice cubes’ molecular structure. In the new state, superionic water is denser than normal water.
When they focused six laser beams from an extremely powerful machine onto the water sample, several shock waves compressed and heat the water ice simultaneously.
The water had been pre-compressed, so the shock heating was less intense than that on normal liquid water, scientists explained. This way, the team was able to push water into much colder states and high pressures than in similar past experiments and finally achieve stability of superionic ice.
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(Mirror Daily, United States) – A lonely gannet in New Zealand that bird lovers affectionately named Nigel was found dead beside a concrete replica bird he had been courting for years.
The bird lived on an inhabited island populated by a colony of fake concrete gannets for about five years. The bird replicas were designed to lure in more gannets to Mana Island, but Nigel was the only real bird to live and die on the cliffs of the desert island. Nigel’s body was found last week.
This just feels like the wrong ending to the story,
conservationist Chris Bell said.
The news was deemed “incredibly sad” by other bird lovers. The lonely bird’s body was found near one of the 80 concrete bird replicas scattered across the island. Nigel falsely believed that the bird was real and even courted it.
RIP ‘No Mates’ Nigel
Volunteers at the Friends of Mana Island group said they saw Nigel carefully build a nest for its mate on the cliff edge in 2013. On Thursday, following the announcement of the bird’s death, Friends of Mana Island wrote on Facebook that the lonely gannet “won the hearts” of all its volunteers and visitors.
The group even cropped a poem in the memory of the stoic bird called “RIP ‘no mates’ Nigel”. The group said that fortunately three other birds landed on the island around Christmas.
The poem says that despite conservationists’ best efforts (“We weeded, we painted, we sprayed guano around”), Nigel failed to find “the real thing”. Bell believes that the dead bird’s unconsummated love affair may not have been in vain, as three other gannets made it to the island.
It is unclear if the bird ever felt lonely, but the fact that it never got loved back must have been an awkward experience even by birds’ standards, Bell noted. He added that people have empathy for Nigel because he was involved in a hopeless situation from the very beginning.
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(Mirror Daily, United States) – Researchers have noticed that one particular star within a globular star cluster has a strange trajectory as it seems to be hurled back and forth at mind-blowing speeds every 167 days.
Scientists now believe that the star may be orbiting a black star that is not observable by Earth-based instruments.
A new study estimates that the black hole has the mass of four stars. It is the first time, astronomers spot a black hole in a globular star cluster, which is considered to be the birthplace of some of the oldest stars.
The research team is confident that the recent finding could shed more light on the formation of black holes and such star clusters. It could also enable researchers to better understand gravitational wave events, which emerge when two black holes are merging.
Some Globular Star Clusters As Old as the Galaxy
Across the Milky Way, there are around 150 globular star clusters. These star formations are believed to be as old as the galaxy itself. The recently found black hole is located inside the global cluster called NGC 3201, which is twice as old as the Sun.
The cluster is located 16,300 light-years away in the direction the Vela the Sails constellation in the southern hemisphere. The cluster is 254,000 heavier than the Sun.
Scientists tracked the cluster with help from the Chile-based ESO’s Very Large Telescope and found that one particular star was acting very strangely. The team speculated that it may be orbiting something that cannot be visible from Earth, but it is four times denser than the Sun. That thing fit the description of a black hole.
Globular clusters are thought to have produced a large number of black holes but most of them are inactive and invisible. The black holes appear in the wake of supernovas when what was left of ancient stars exploded and collapsed.
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(Mirror Daily, United States) – Smart speakers were some of the most popular items sold this last holiday season, meaning that as many as 39 million Americans currently own one. This marks a 128 percent jump from last year’s levels.
According to a NPR/ Edison Research report, America is starting to feel more comfortable about the controversial technology as tech companies like Amazon, Google, and Apple are releasing more and more advanced products.
Apple announced its first smart speaker, the HomePod, earlier this month, so experts expect the market to grow even more as Apple product owners will want one. According to another report, 44 percent of Americans said they’d like to buy a smart speaker by the end of the year.
The voice-controlled devices are convenient since they allow users to remotely search for info on the web, play their favorite songs, make phone calls, control the IoT-connected home, and much more.
Amazon’s Echo Dot the Most Popular Smart Speaker
NPR researchers also found that smart speakers were extremely popular from Black Friday to the end of December last year. As many as 7 percent of Americans bought a smart speaker during that period, with Alexa’s Echo being the most popular.
Google and Amazon have both lowered prices for the past season, but customers were easily persuaded to put their cash in an Echo or a Google Home product. Amazon’s best-selling device was the Echo Dot, which had a sizable discount from $50 to $30 in the period before Christmas. The Dot was deemed the best-selling item in its category during the holiday season.
When asked why they would buy a smart speaker, one-third of respondents said it helps them to spend less time on their tablets or smartphones. An extra 44% said that they use the digital assistant on their mobile phones more now that they have gotten used to voice command their smart speakers.
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(Mirror Daily, United States) – During this year’s International Consumer Electronics Show (CES), Intel unveiled a quantum computing system that represents an improved version of other models currently in the making.
The company’s chief executive Brian Krzanic is confident that the state-of-the-art 49-qubit quantum computer will enable the chip maker to achieve the “quantum supremacy”.
The new system is a major advance in a field dominated by 17-qubit systems. One such system was unveiled just a couple of months ago. Intel has reportedly joined forces with a Netherlands-based firm to expand the number of qubits.
The new system is inching closer to a quantum computer that will have real world applications. In October, the company unveiled its own 17-qubit machine. At the time, it explained that qubits can be “extremely fragile”.
In other words, the tiny units of quantum information are disturbed by the faintest noise or faulty observation which can lead to irreversible data loss.
Quantum Computers Need Extreme Cooling Solutions
Because of the fragility, current quantum computers need to operate at a temperature that is 250 colder than the outer space.
This is the main reason why quantum computer won’t be reaching common households in the near future. The oldest computers too needed extreme cooling solutions, but quantum computers cannot currently incorporate the cooling they need in a relatively tiny space.
Intel refused to be more specific about the new machine. In October, it said that its quantum computers use a different architecture which offers improved thermal performance and stability. Its 17-qubit computer’s chip supported 10-100x more signals. State-of-the-art technology was reportedly used to manufacture the microprocessor.
We expect the features that were unveiled in October to be incorporated in the latest machine which was nicknamed Tangle Lake. The name comes from the tangled states the electrons inside the system.
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