10 Stories To Start Your Day


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Top Story:  Why robots are being trained in self-awareneww.

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Accessed on 15 April 2020, 1700 UTC.


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Why robots are being trained in self-awareness

Posted: 15 Apr 2020 07:45 AM PDT

Robots passing cognitive tests such as recognising themselves in a mirror and being programmed with a human sense of time are showing how machines are being shaped to become a bigger part of our everyday lives.  In 2016, for the first time ever, the number of robots in homes, the military, shops and hospitals surpassed that […]
Spider venom key to pain relief without side-effects

Posted: 15 Apr 2020 07:17 AM PDT

Molecules in tarantula venom could be used as an alternative to opioid pain killers for people seeking chronic pain relief. University of Queensland researchers have designed a novel tarantula venom mini-protein that can potentially relieve severe pain without addiction. Dr Christina Schroeder from UQ’s Institute for Molecular Bioscience said the current opioid crisis around the world meant […]
Your nose may know more when it comes to COVID-19

Posted: 15 Apr 2020 07:02 AM PDT

A University of Cincinnati ear, nose and throat specialist says your nose may hold a clue in identifying COVID-19. The loss of smell may be a key indicator. Physicians are increasingly recognizing the importance of the nasal cavity in determining the physiology of COVID-19, explains Ahmad Sedaghat, an associate professor in the UC College of […]
Astronomers detect most energetic outflow from a distant quasar

Posted: 15 Apr 2020 07:02 AM PDT

Researchers using the Gemini North telescope on Hawaiʻi’s Maunakea have detected the most energetic wind from any quasar ever measured. This outflow, which is travelling at nearly 13% of the speed of light, carries enough energy to dramatically impact star formation across an entire galaxy. The extragalactic tempest lay hidden in plain sight for 15 […]
Prisons, domestic violence and COVID-19

Posted: 15 Apr 2020 07:02 AM PDT

The first case of COVID-19 in a Michigan prison was reported March 27 at the Women’s Huron Valley Correctional Facility in Ypsilanti. Since then, the Michigan Department of Corrections has confirmed more than 400 cases in several prisons across the state, with the virus accounting for 10 deaths. Carol Jacobsen, a professor at the University […]
COVID-19 may not go away in warmer weather

Posted: 15 Apr 2020 06:56 AM PDT

Harvard researchers examining the common cold for hints about how the COVID-19 virus might behave said that summer may not save us and that repeated periods of social distancing may be needed to keep serious cases from overwhelming the hospital system. The findings, published online in the journal Science on Tuesday, were produced by scientists […]
Being right-brained or left-brained comes down to molecular switches

Posted: 15 Apr 2020 06:47 AM PDT

Scientists may have solved one of the most puzzling and persistent mysteries in neuroscience: why some people are “right-brained” while others are “left-brained.” The answer lies in how certain genes on each side of the brain are switched “on” and “off” through a process called epigenetic regulation. The findings may explain why Parkinson’s disease and […]
Shorter work week may be needed to save planet’s biodiversity

Posted: 15 Apr 2020 06:47 AM PDT

The increase in resource consumption and polluting emissions as a result of economic growth is not compatible with biodiversity conservation. However, most international policies on biodiversity and sustainability advocate economic growth. These are the main conclusions of the study ‘Biodiversity policy beyond economic growth‘, published this week in the scientific journal Conservation Letters. This contradiction became […]
Physically active older veterans fall more, but hurt themselves less

Posted: 15 Apr 2020 06:36 AM PDT

Active older veterans fall more often than their more sedentary peers who never served in the armed forces, but they’re less likely to injure themselves when they do, says a University of Michigan researcher. A new study by Geoffrey Hoffman, U-M assistant professor of nursing, compared risks of noninjury falls and fall-related injuries in veterans […]
Brain immune cell defect may help explain social impairments in males with autism

Posted: 15 Apr 2020 06:33 AM PDT

Many cases of autism spectrum disorders (ASDs) may result from problems in immune cells that normally work to trim back unneeded brain connections in early life, suggests a new study led by scientists at Scripps Research. The study, published April 14 in Nature Communications, examined the effects of a set of gene mutations that account for […]

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Until next time,

Russ Roberts

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