Science & Tech

Otters Are Not Cute, They Are Sick Depraved Jerks

Otters Are Not Cute, They Are Sick Depraved Jerks

Science & Tech
Wednesday May 30 is World Otter Day, a day where your newsfeeds will undoubtedly be filled with cutesy photographs of fuzzy little otters juggling stones or holding hands while they sleep. But don’t be fooled by this PR campaign. Behind those beady eyes lies a dark secret: Otters are assholes. It’s often pointed out that humans would be foolish to apply their moral compass onto nature; however, seriously, otters are total jerks. Not convinced? Here’s a brief look at the mass of evidence against these sadistic, semiaquatic sickos. Forced Sex For starters, violence and aggression is the norm for sea otter mating, with males regularly seen holding females' heads underwater, biting their faces, and forcing them into submission. One st...
This “Alternative Cancer Treatment” Has Horrific Side Effects. Why The Hell Are People Still Using It?

This “Alternative Cancer Treatment” Has Horrific Side Effects. Why The Hell Are People Still Using It?

Science & Tech
Warning: This article contains extremely graphic images  Horror stories and gruesome images of “Black Salve” victims have been knocking around for decades. In most countries, this nasty "alternative" cancer treatment is tightly outlawed. However, in the era of online shopping and Youtuber quackery, it appears to be having an unlikely comeback. Australian newspaper The Age reported this month that a nurse died from ovarian cancer after shunning mainstream treatments in favor of black salve. She was a successful and intelligent woman, and a trained ER nurse, yet she was still sucked in by its lofty claims and "all natural" image. “Anyone who suffers from cancer, or knows someone who does, understands the fear and desperation that ca...
Pandora now offers a Premium Family plan for $14.99 a month

Pandora now offers a Premium Family plan for $14.99 a month

Science & Tech
Pandora just launched a family version of its Premium service. For $14.99 a month, up to six users can access Premium features (the individual version costs $9.99 a month). The new subscription option was added with little fanfare and spotted earlier today by Android Police. This better positions Pandora to compete with Spotify Premium and Apple Music, at least from a pricing perspective. Both of those services also offer family plans covering up to six people for $14.99 a month. An annual subscription to Pandora’s Premium Family is also available for $164.98 a year. In addition to other Premium features, Premium Family includes a personalized playlist called Our Soundtrack that selects a mix of songs based on every family member’s listening habits. Pandora just finished rol...
Review: Cult of the Machine at the de Young

Review: Cult of the Machine at the de Young

Science & Tech
Let’s flash back to the Machine Age, the period in American history that gave us the assembly line, the first nonstop transcontinental flight, regular radio broadcasts, and the first robot capable of performing more than 20 movements. These technological advancements inspired a style of art called Precisionism, popularized by big names like Georgia O’Keefe, Charles Sheeler and Charles Demuth. The Cult of the Machine exhibit at the de Young museum in San Francisco is a reflection of attitudes toward machines and robotics during the Machine Age, the period between the two world wars during which industrial efficiency was the reigning mantra. In an era where efficiency was seen as both beautiful and as a threat, there was an influx of art inspired by anxieties people had abo...
CommerceDNA wins the TechCrunch Hackathon at VivaTech

CommerceDNA wins the TechCrunch Hackathon at VivaTech

Science & Tech
It’s been a long night at VivaTech. The building hosted a very special competition — the very first TechCrunch Hackathon in Paris. Hundreds of engineers and designers got together to come up with something cool, something neat, something awesome. The only condition was that they only had 24 hours to work on their projects. Some of them were participating in our event for the first time, while others were regulars. Some of them slept on the floor in a corner, while others drank too much Red Bull. We could all feel the excitement in the air when the 64 teams took the stage to present a one-minute demo to impress fellow coders and our judges. But only one team could take home the grand prize and €5,000. So, without further ado, meet the TechCrunch Hackathon winner. Winner: C...
Kaltura acquires interactive video startup Rapt Media

Kaltura acquires interactive video startup Rapt Media

Science & Tech
Kaltura is expanding its enterprise video platform with the acquisition of Rapt Media. Kaltura already offers support for some interactivity in videos, particularly with quizzes, but co-founder and CEO Ron Yekutiel predicted that this technology is going to become increasingly important: “The bigger play in the world of enterprise and the world of education is a play towards interactivity and personalization.” Kaltura isn’t the only interactive video startup — for example, I’ve been impressed by the branching narratives powered by Eko. But Yekutiel said Rapt stood out because it offers true interactivity (not just adding a few buttons and links to a linear video) for marketing, education and HR. He also praised its “high availability and reliability wi...
Why The Hell Is Kilauea’s Eruption Now Making Blue Fire?

Why The Hell Is Kilauea’s Eruption Now Making Blue Fire?

Science & Tech
From explosively-generated ash plumes at Kilauea’s summit to the utterly spectacular lava fountaining taking places on its flanks via one of its dozens of fissures, this corner of Hawaii’s Big Island is putting on quite the show. Something almost magical is also afoot. Spotted in some of the footage provided by the United States Geological Survey (USGS), and clearly shown in a newly released photograph, blue flames are now shooting out of the ground around the Leilani Estates subdivision. It’s not literally magic, of course, but this glorious quirk of chemistry has got everyone understandably excited. As Earther opined so magnificently, it looks a lot like "bioluminescent waves lapping against the shores of hell." So what’s the d...
Elon Musk has a very bad idea for a website rating journalists

Elon Musk has a very bad idea for a website rating journalists

Science & Tech
Elon Musk has, as I imagine he often does during meetings or long car rides, come up with an idea for a new thing. Unlike the Hyperloop, which was cool, and various space-related ideas, which we know he’s at least partly expert about, this one is just plain bad. It’s basically Yelp But For Journalism. My guess is Musk does not often use Yelp, and has never operated a small business like a restaurant or salon. Especially in today’s fiercely divided internet landscape, there is no reliable metric for truth or accountability. Some will say The New York Times is the most trusted newspaper in America — others will call it a debased rag with a liberal agenda. Individual stories will receive the same treatment, with some disputing what they believe are biases and others...
Scientists Think They Know What Causes The Most Common Childhood Cancer – And How To Prevent It

Scientists Think They Know What Causes The Most Common Childhood Cancer – And How To Prevent It

Science & Tech
Over 30 years of research has determined that acute lymphoblastic leukemia (ALL), the most common cause of cancer in children, could actually be prevented in a very simple way. Scientists believe that our obsession with cleanliness and fear of germs could actually play a role in the disease by stopping children’s immune systems from developing properly. ALL is a type of blood cancer that affects the bone marrow. While it is most common in those aged 4 and younger, it can affect adults too, with about 6,000 Americans being diagnosed each year. Today about 90 percent of children with ALL are cured, although the treatments are unpleasant to endure. The discovery that the disease might be preventable is very exciting news.   Looking at a wide ran...
CREXi raises $11 million to bring commercial real estate out of the Dark Ages

CREXi raises $11 million to bring commercial real estate out of the Dark Ages

Science & Tech
Managing, buying and selling commercial real estate is a fairly primitive process. CREXi founder Mike DeGiorgio remembers one experience in 2014 when he was required to fax and mail details about an urgent transaction to the leasing office, a move that made him think he was back in the era of Pogs and MTV’s Real World Season 1. “There simply was no great industry solution for researching markets, finding comps, transacting, connecting with key stakeholders, purchasing or investing in properties, renting or leasing space, getting a loan, finding partners to purchase properties with, marketing yourself or the properties you own, sell or lease etc.,” he said. “I started thinking about technology solutions for the commercial real estate industry to solve many of these ...
La Belle Vie wants to compete with Amazon Prime Now in Paris

La Belle Vie wants to compete with Amazon Prime Now in Paris

Science & Tech
French startup La Belle Vie announced a new funding round of $6.5 million earlier this week (€5.5 million). Julien Mangeard, Thibaut Faurès Fustel de Coulanges, Louis Duclert, Kima Ventures and Shake-Up Factory participated in the founding round. Online grocery shopping is becoming quite competitive in Paris. You can order groceries from Amazon using Amazon Prime Now. And all the traditional supermarkets are launching or relaunching services to order and receive groceries within a couple of hours — Carrefour Livraison Express, Franprix’s mobile app, etc. But all those services aren’t necessarily designed for this kind of offering. With Franprix’s app for instance, a rider is going to pick up your groceries in the nearest store and bring them to you...
Job search engine Adzuna raises 8M Series C from Smedvig Capital

Job search engine Adzuna raises 8M Series C from Smedvig Capital

Science & Tech
Adzuna, the meta-search engine for jobs, has raised £8 million in Series C funding from Smedvig Capital. The U.K. company’s previous backers include Index Ventures, Passion Capital, LocalGlobe and more than 400 Crowdcube investors. It takes total funding to £12 million. Founded by the team behind Gumtree, Zoopla and Qype, Adzuna essentially aggregates job listings across the web to offer a single destination to search for a job. It launched first in the U.K. in 2011 but has since expanded to 16 countries, in which co-founder Doug Monro tells me the U.K., the U.S., Germany, Netherlands, France and Brazil are its strongest markets. “We’re growing very quickly in several of the others. We are really excited about the growth we are seeing in the U.S. in particul...
Explosive Eruption Takes Place At Kilauea Volcano’s Summit

Explosive Eruption Takes Place At Kilauea Volcano’s Summit

Science & Tech
Just now, at 0415 hours local time, a significant explosion at the summit of Hawaii’s Kilauea volcano took place, creating a major plume of ash around 9,144 meters (roughly 30,000 feet) high. Information is still coming in, but no-one appears to be in any immediate danger: Authorities have quickly explained that volcanological and National Park staffs have already been evacuated. The plume and ash fallout can be seen via the lone webcam in the area. The latest advisory from the United States Geological Survey (USGS) explains that the explosion from the Overlook vent within Halema’uma’u crater created the sizeable ash column that drifted northeast. The column seems to have been short-lived. “Continued emissions from the crater are...
Student’s Engineering Skills And Quick Thinking Saved A Man’s Life Mid-Flight

Student’s Engineering Skills And Quick Thinking Saved A Man’s Life Mid-Flight

Science & Tech
If you suddenly fall ill on a long-haul flight, you're probably hoping there is a doctor onboard. However, perhaps you should keep your eyes peeled for engineers instead.  Karttikeya Mangalam, a 21-year old student at IIT-Kanpur in India, was flying from Geneva to New Delhi in February after finishing his exchange year in Switzerland. A few hours into the fight, a member of the aircrew announced that dreaded question to the passengers: “Is there a doctor onboard?!” As Karttikeya explains in a blog post, it turned out a 30-year-old Dutchman named Thomas had Type-1 diabetes and was on the verge of a hyperglycemic episode, where the body’s blood sugar levels are way higher than normal. Sweating, nauseous, and faint, Th...
This Is How Old Your Dog ACTUALLY Is

This Is How Old Your Dog ACTUALLY Is

Science & Tech
Dogs age at different rates compared to humans, but the simple rule of 7 dog years to 1 human year is far from accurate. If humans aged seven times slower than dogs, then many of us would be able to reproduce at age 7 and live to be 150. Obviously, that's not the case. The reason that dogs can reach full sexual maturity after only a year is that our canine friends age faster during the first two years of their lives than humans do. Even this general statement is slightly off since smaller breeds tend to mature faster than larger breeds. Compared to humans, dogs age more quickly at the beginning of their lives and slower toward the end. Therefore, calculating your dog's age relative to yours is a bit tricky, but luckily it's possible. Since smaller breed...
Rome’s Fault Helped Make It A Great Power

Rome’s Fault Helped Make It A Great Power

Science & Tech
The Romans often attributed their success at building the greatest empire of the ancient world to various virtues of their own. However, it seems their faults also played a part, or perhaps just one fault running beneath Tiber Valley that prepared the ground for the eternal city. Rome's astonishing empire would have been impossible without its geographic advantages, including a stable source of freshwater that could be crossed with ease. Before the population got large enough to put up extensive bridges, Tiber Island split the river so that each side could be crossed without needing to swim. Geologists and archaeologists studying Rome's origins have found that the island came into existence because crustal movements shifted the course of ...
How To Find Out If Your Facebook Data Was Shared With Cambridge Analytica

How To Find Out If Your Facebook Data Was Shared With Cambridge Analytica

Science & Tech
Today’s the day when Facebook will notify the millions of users who had their personal information used and abused by data-mining firm Cambridge Analytica. At some point on Monday, April 9, all of Facebook’s 2.2 billion users will receive a notification titled “Protecting Your Information”. If you are one of the 87 million users whose had your data improperly shared with Cambridge Analytica then your notification will have a tab called “See How You Are Affected”. If your data hasn’t been improperly shared, it will simply say “Go To Apps and Websites”. The difference between the notifications is pictured below. Many commentators are noting that users should still not be complacent about their dat...
49 Health “Facts” You’ve Been Told All Your Life That Are Totally Wrong

49 Health “Facts” You’ve Been Told All Your Life That Are Totally Wrong

Science & Tech
Carrots give you night vision. Swimming after eating will give you cramps. You need to drink eight glasses of water a day. Organic food is more nutritious and free of pesticides.  Nope, nope, nope, and nope. Who hasn't shared these and other amazing-sounding notions about about health and the human body, only to feel embarrassed later on — when you find out the information was inaccurate or flat-out wrong? It's time to put an end to these alluring myths, misconceptions, and inaccuracies passed down through the ages. To help the cause we've rounded up and corrected dozens of the most popular health "facts" that we've heard. Have any favorites we missed? Send them to science@techinsider.io. Kevin Loria, Lauren Friedman, Kelly Dickerson, Je...
The Tragic Story Of America’s Only Native Parrot, Now Extinct For 100 Years

The Tragic Story Of America’s Only Native Parrot, Now Extinct For 100 Years

Science & Tech
It was winter in upstate New York in 1780 in a rural town called Schoharie, home to the deeply religious Palatine Germans. Suddenly, a flock of gregarious red and green birds flew into town, seemingly upon a whirlwind. The townspeople thought the end of the world was upon them. Though the robin-sized birds left quickly, their appearance was forever imprinted on local lore. As author Benjamin Smith Barton wrote, “The more ignorant Dutch settlers were exceedingly alarmed. They imagined, in dreadful consternation, that it portended nothing less calamitous than the destruction of the world.” You and I know that the birds weren’t a precursor of mankind’s demise – but in a way, there was impending doom ahead. These birds were Ca...
Peruvian Archaeologists Discover Dozens Of New Nasca Lines

Peruvian Archaeologists Discover Dozens Of New Nasca Lines

Science & Tech
Mapping the famous Nasca lines for the first time, Peruvian archaeologists accidentally discovered more than 50 previously unknown ancient geoglyphs. Often measuring only a few inches across, the thinly-traced lines are too difficult to discern with the naked eye. Carved into the earth more than a millennium ago, over time many of the lines had been reduced to faint depressions in the soil. High-resolution 3D scans of the terrain captured with low-flying drones show in stunning detail the massive lines, reports National Geographic.  Archaeologists believe some of the new lines date back even further than the Nasca culture (200 to 700 CE), having been carved by the Paracas and Topara cultures between 500 BCE and 200 CE. The Nasca lines are only visi...