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Denise Case

Denise Case 

The secret of life is two words: not always so :)

Occupation: “The master in the art of living makes little distinction between his work and his play, his labor and his leisure, his mind and his body, his information and his recreation, his love and his religion

Followers: 22,880

Cream of the Crop: 04/18/2012

Added to CircleCount.com: 12/28/2011That's the date, where Denise Case has been indexed by CircleCount.com.
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Denise Case has been at 1 events

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Science on Google+904,937Can you believe it! The +Science on Google+ community is approaching 200k members! We'll have reached that number by this weekend, so we're going to have a huge community celebration! Join your hosts +Scott Lewis and +Buddhini Samarasinghe as they start the celebration of being the #1 science community and the #10 community in *all of Google+*!!  During our Hangout On Air, you'll get a chance to meet the moderators  who dedicate so much time and energy into making sure that good, high quality science content is showcased in the community.  After we hear from the moderators on *who* they are, we'll have a discussion on what the curator team looks at for community posts to get put on the *Curator's Choice*.  We are all extremely excited to be celebrating with all 200,000 of you! Let's stay curious and find new and better ways to understand this amazing Universe we all live in! #ScienceSunday   #STEM   #ScienceEveryday   #SoGp200k  200,000 member community celebration!2014-01-12 22:00:00184  

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Top posts in the last 50 posts

Most comments: 9

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2016-11-09 00:54:22 (9 comments; 1 reshares; 10 +1s; )Open 

+The New York Times​​​ provides amazing live data graphics as the election unfolds.http://www.nytimes.com/elections/results/president

Most reshares: 8

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2017-02-25 03:19:15 (0 comments; 8 reshares; 48 +1s; )Open 

Here is a very clear GIF of the recent Space X landing. 

Most plusones: 54

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2016-09-12 23:44:18 (1 comments; 6 reshares; 54 +1s; )Open 

Latest 50 posts

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2017-06-18 12:54:18 (0 comments; 1 reshares; 13 +1s; )Open 

for later reading :D

for later reading :D___

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2017-06-17 12:42:08 (0 comments; 0 reshares; 5 +1s; )Open 

Solar fuel research. Exploring renewable options for concentrated energy demands.

#clean #energy #research #sciencesunday

Solar fuel research. Exploring renewable options for concentrated energy demands.

#clean #energy #research #sciencesunday___

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2017-06-16 18:58:47 (0 comments; 0 reshares; 7 +1s; )Open 

New Google Scholar Classic Papers, a collection of highly-cited papers that have stood the test of time. Each area lists the ten most-cited articles published ten years earlier.[1]

Link: https://scholar.google.com/citations?view_op=list_classic_articles&hl=en&by=2006

[1] https://scholar.googleblog.com/2017/06/classic-papers-articles-that-have-stood.html


New Google Scholar Classic Papers, a collection of highly-cited papers that have stood the test of time. Each area lists the ten most-cited articles published ten years earlier.[1]

Link: https://scholar.google.com/citations?view_op=list_classic_articles&hl=en&by=2006

[1] https://scholar.googleblog.com/2017/06/classic-papers-articles-that-have-stood.html
___

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2017-06-15 13:22:34 (0 comments; 0 reshares; 3 +1s; )Open 

A lukewarmer's confession

The Earth's temperature is now in the middle of the range projected by climate models. When it was at the lower end of this range, lukewarmers believed this would continue. Now they're less sure.

What are lukewarmers? Ross Douthat explains:

Like a lot of conservatives who write about public policy, my views on climate change place me in the ranks of what the British writer Matt Ridley once dubbed the “lukewarmers.”

Lukewarmers accept that the earth is warming and that our civilization’s ample CO2 emissions are a major cause. They doubt, however, that climate change represents a crisis unique among the varied challenges we face, or that the global regulatory schemes advanced to deal with it will work as advertised. And they raise an eyebrow at the contrast between the apocalyptic, absolutist rhetoricwith ... more »

A lukewarmer's confession

The Earth's temperature is now in the middle of the range projected by climate models. When it was at the lower end of this range, lukewarmers believed this would continue. Now they're less sure.

What are lukewarmers? Ross Douthat explains:

Like a lot of conservatives who write about public policy, my views on climate change place me in the ranks of what the British writer Matt Ridley once dubbed the “lukewarmers.”

Lukewarmers accept that the earth is warming and that our civilization’s ample CO2 emissions are a major cause. They doubt, however, that climate change represents a crisis unique among the varied challenges we face, or that the global regulatory schemes advanced to deal with it will work as advertised. And they raise an eyebrow at the contrast between the apocalyptic, absolutist rhetoric with which these schemes are regularly defended and their actual details, which seem mostly designed to enable the globe’s statesmen to greenwash the pursuit of economic and political self-interest.

More specifically, lukewarmers look at the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change’s official projections and see a strong likelihood that rising temperatures will drag on G.D.P. without leading to catastrophe. They look at the record of climatological predictions and see a pattern in which observed warming hugs the lower, non-disastrous end of the spectrum of projections. And they look at the substance of the Paris accord, which papered over a failed attempt to set binding emission rules with a set of fine-sounding promises, and see little to justify all the anguish and despair over Donald Trump’s decision to abandon it.

The despairing are unlikely to be convinced by this quick description, so for a better sense of the lukewarmist case, I recommend two recent essays by Oren Cass of the Manhattan Institute: First, “The Problem With Climate Catastrophizing,” from Foreign Affairs, and second, “How to Worry About Climate Change,” from National Affairs.

But while inviting readers to ease their pain over Paris with the balm of lukewarmism, I also want to concede two problems with this approach. The first is that no less than alarmism, lukewarmism can be vulnerable to cherry-picking and selection bias, reaching for any piece of evidence — and when you’re dealing with long-term trends, there’s a lot of evidence to choose from — that supports its non-catastrophic assumptions, even if the bulk of the data starts to point the other way.

This means that every lukewarmer, including especially those in positions of political authority, should be pressed to identify trends that would push them toward greater alarmism and a sharper focus on the issue.

I’ll answer that challenge myself: My own alarm over climate change has gone up modestly since the Obama-era cap-and-trade debates, as the decade or more in which observed warming was slow or even flat — the much-contested warming “pause” — has given way to a clearer rise in global temperatures.

If you chart this spike against the range of climate change projections, it brings the trend up into the middle of climatologists’ scenarios for the first time in some years. Maybe that will be temporary and it will fall back. But the closer the real trend gets to the worst-case projections, the more my lukewarmism will look Pollyannish and require substantial reassessment.

But this is where the second objection to lukewarmism comes in, which is that such reassessment might happen on op-ed pages but not in actual right-wing politics, because in actual right-wing politics no serious assessment of the science and the risks is taking place to begin with. Instead there’s just a mix of business-class and blue-collar self-interest and a trollish, “If liberals are for it, we’re against it” anti-intellectualism. So while lukewarmers may fancy ourselves serious interlocutors for liberals, we’re actually just running interference on behalf of know-nothing and do-nothingism, attacking flawed policies on behalf of a Republican Party that will never, ever advance any policies of its own.

This critique is … not necessarily wrong. A Republican Party that was really shaped by lukewarmism would probably still oppose the Paris deal and shrink from sweeping carbon taxes. But it would be actively debating and budgeting for the two arenas — innovation and mitigation — where the smartest skeptics of regulatory solutions tend to place their faith.

This is not what the G.O.P. seems inclined to do. Instead it lets lukewarmers poke holes in liberal proposals for climate insurance policies, and then sits back satisfied that no insurance policy, no extra effort, is necessary at all.

Earlier I recommended reading Oren Cass’s essays; now I’ll quote his tweet when Trump pulled out of the Paris accord. “Hopefully someday,” he wrote, “we’ll get a reality-based climate agreement that helps prepare for and adapt to whatever climate change brings.”

The problem is that while Paris was not sufficiently rooted in reality, the anti-Paris sentiments that moved Trump weren’t entirely reality-based either. And a clear Republican plan for how to “prepare for and adapt to whatever climate change brings” does not actually exist.

In its absence, lukewarmism is a critique without an affirmative agenda, a theory of the case without a party that’s prepared to ever act on it. So its claim to offer a fully-credible policy alternative to climate alarmism awaits a different president, and a very different G.O.P.

I disagree with a lot of this. For example, calling Trump's attitude "not entirely reality-based" is an outrageous understatement. Nonetheless, it's so rare to see someone straddling this particular fence that I find Douthat's position quite interesting. How often does someone admit that they're "actually just running interference on behalf of know-nothing and do-nothingism"?

#climateaction___

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2017-06-14 01:36:34 (0 comments; 0 reshares; 4 +1s; )Open 

Concise Visual Summary of Deep Learning Architectures

Concise Visual Summary of Deep Learning Architectures___

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2017-06-10 03:22:04 (0 comments; 0 reshares; 9 +1s; )Open 

Planetary stewardship :)

"France just launched https://www.makeourplanetgreatagain.fr/
and is offering grants of up to 1.5 million Euro for climate scientists to move there."
___Planetary stewardship :)

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2017-06-03 12:50:49 (0 comments; 1 reshares; 13 +1s; )Open 

Dereliction of Duty. Public service here is not what it used to be...

#climatechange #maketheplanetgreatagain #publicservice #principles #integrity #honesty #wisdom

Pants on fire.___Dereliction of Duty. Public service here is not what it used to be...

#climatechange #maketheplanetgreatagain #publicservice #principles #integrity #honesty #wisdom

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2017-06-02 12:58:14 (0 comments; 0 reshares; 3 +1s; )Open 

USA to withdraw from Paris Agreement. I had hoped he would do the right thing (and earn heartfelt accolades here and around the world). The international discussion in the comments is worth a read.

States are agreeing to uphold the agreement.
https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/United_States_Climate_Alliance

#climatechange #maketheplanetgreatagain 

USA to withdraw from Paris Agreement. I had hoped he would do the right thing (and earn heartfelt accolades here and around the world). The international discussion in the comments is worth a read.

States are agreeing to uphold the agreement.
https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/United_States_Climate_Alliance

#climatechange #maketheplanetgreatagain ___

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2017-05-31 17:59:51 (1 comments; 0 reshares; 4 +1s; )Open 

How did we get here (so quickly)? Built on a foundation of public schools, public libraries, and public service, we took a geographically large area and connected all of us with interstates and telephones. We believed in the power of education and innovation, and built a thriving middle class.

Recent policies being proposed - and sometimes implemented - are short-sighted, punitive, regressive, and sometimes even cruel.

I believe there are more principled people than irrationally greedy or gullible ones. We will turn this around.

Read this.___How did we get here (so quickly)? Built on a foundation of public schools, public libraries, and public service, we took a geographically large area and connected all of us with interstates and telephones. We believed in the power of education and innovation, and built a thriving middle class.

Recent policies being proposed - and sometimes implemented - are short-sighted, punitive, regressive, and sometimes even cruel.

I believe there are more principled people than irrationally greedy or gullible ones. We will turn this around.

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2017-05-30 03:17:13 (5 comments; 0 reshares; 5 +1s; )Open 

Interesting question: "Why do so few people major in computer science?"

#coding #cs #computerscience #highereducation #scienceeveryday

Interesting question: "Why do so few people major in computer science?"

#coding #cs #computerscience #highereducation #scienceeveryday___

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2017-05-29 21:17:47 (1 comments; 4 reshares; 4 +1s; )Open 

Interesting project. :)

This Summer, Build the Self-Sovereign Internet

The world is in flux. The institutions of yesterday are breaking before our eyes, but the new systems we need haven’t yet emerged. And yet, you may have a sense that we are on the verge of an entirely new reality that could be both empowering and regenerative for all. In pursuit of that possibility, we’re building Ceptr – the next version of the internet – designed to push power down and increase individual sovereignty while creating new avenues for collaboration. Based upon the design patterns that nature relies on for creating resilient living systems, Ceptr will run alongside and “play well” with the existing internet.

This summer, come help us continue laying the foundation for a truly thriving world. We have opportunities for remote participation as well as onsite residencies in New Mexico, Oregon and California. Together we have the potential to transform billions of lives by creating the conditions for new forms of self-governance, vibrant communities, and a more equitable society.

http://ceptr.org/participate/residencies

+Michel Bauwens I wonder if the residencies page is appropriate to repost in the p2pfoundation blog or if it would be best to write something with more context and also shae the opportunities for residency?

#blockchain #holochain #globalbrain #summer

+John Abbe +Michael Maranda +Michael Margolis +Magenta Ceiba +Maia Conty +John Verdon +John Kellden +Nicholas Perrin +Jean-François Noubel +Jack Park +Jamaica Stevens +Ishan Shapiro +Liz McLellan

___Interesting project. :)

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2017-05-28 01:47:36 (1 comments; 1 reshares; 26 +1s; )Open 

___

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2017-04-16 11:10:39 (0 comments; 1 reshares; 6 +1s; )Open 

SciTech Digest by Mark Bruce. Another fascinating week of noteworthy news in science and technology. :)

Thanks +Mark Bruce​!

#robotics #ai #intelligentagents

SciTech Digest - 16/2017.
Permalink here: http://www.scitechdigest.net/2017/04/creating-negative-mass-solar-water.html

Creating negative mass, Solar water harvesting, CRISPR diagnostics, Complex 2D microchips, Complex cellular biocomputers, Cellular reprogramming for Parkinson’s, Generative adversarial networks, Prototype magnonic device, Chatbots that empathise, Adaptive robotic grasping.

1. Creating Negative Mass
An experimentally verified physical system exhibiting properties of negative mass has been achieved by cooling a Bose-Einstein condensate to a superfluid state and using a second laser to change the spin of atoms; pushing the system results in it accelerating backwards https://news.wsu.edu/2017/04/10/negative-mass-created-at-wsu/.

2. Solar Powered Water Harvesting
Porous metal-organic framework materials have been configured such that any suitable heat or light source causes the material to remove and condense water from the air, even at very low humidity levels http://news.mit.edu/2017/MOF-device-harvests-fresh-water-from-air-0414. 1 kg of material would be able to provide approximately 3 liters of water from dry air with only 20% humidity.

3. CRISPR Diagnostics
A modified CRISPR enzyme that targets and cleaves RNA has been developed into the SHERLOCK diagnostics platform for rapid point-of-care testing for specific viruses, bacteria, and other relevant mutations http://news.mit.edu/2017/scientists-unveil-crispr-based-diagnostic-platform-0413. CRISPR is also being used to mine bacterial genomes for pharmaceuticals https://news.illinois.edu/blog/view/6367/486265.

4. Complex 2D Microchip
The most complex two-dimensional microprocessor chip with more than 100 transistors has been demonstrated from the three-atom thick material molybdenum disulfide http://spectrum.ieee.org/nanoclast/semiconductors/devices/the-most-complex-2d-microchip-yet.

5. Cellular Biocomputers with Logic Circuits
New synthetic biology tool BLADE uses DNA-recombinase enzymes to function as molecular logic gates in human cells, and currently demonstrating over 100 different Boolean logic functions for regulating gene activity based on environmental cues https://singularityhub.com/2017/04/12/scientists-hacked-a-cells-dna-and-made-a-biocomputer-out-of-it/.

6. Cellular Reprogramming for Parkinson’s
New cellular reprogramming techniques manipulate an animal’s cells in vivo and in tests in mice appear to convert one type of cell (brain support cell in this case) into a dopamine producing cell to reverse Parkinson’s symptoms https://www.fightaging.org/archives/2017/04/cellular-reprogramming-approach-reverses-parkinsons-symptoms-in-a-mouse-model/.

7. Generative Adversarial Networks
Generative Adversarial Networks pit two neural networks against one another in order to come up with much better and more accurate solutions than either would be able to do so on their own and might one day deliver forms of unsupervised learning https://www.wired.com/2017/04/googles-dueling-neural-networks-spar-get-smarter-no-humans-required/.

8. Prototype Magnonic Device
Competing with conventional prototype spintronics devices, a prototype magnonic device has been demonstrated that instead manipulates oscillating spin-waves that travel throughout magnetic materials without requiring electric currents http://spectrum.ieee.org/nanoclast/semiconductors/devices/move-over-spintronics-here-comes-magnonics-to-the-rescue-of-electronics.

9. Chatbots that Empathise
Chatbots have been developed that assess the emotional content of a user’s text and can respond appropriately by conveying specific emotions https://www.technologyreview.com/s/604157/emotional-chatting-machine-assesses-your-emotion-and-copies-it/.

10. Adaptive Robotic Grasping
Soft Robotics has a new adaptive grasping system able to handle arbitrarily-shaped objects with uneven surfaces http://www.roboticgizmos.com/soft-robot-adaptive-grasping/ - this modular robotic gripped could benefit a range of different robotics platforms.
___SciTech Digest by Mark Bruce. Another fascinating week of noteworthy news in science and technology. :)

Thanks +Mark Bruce​!

#robotics #ai #intelligentagents

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2017-04-08 11:20:31 (1 comments; 1 reshares; 9 +1s; )Open 

Humans are amazing.

Thank you +Charles Filipponi​ for sharing!

#extraordinary #music #Rachmaninoff

Rachmaninoff was an April Fool's baby. A day late, but one of my favorite piano pieces by him.

Yuja Wang is exhilarating to watch.

Happy Sunday, friends. :)

#musicalmelange #classicalmusic #piano #rachmaninoff #yujawang___Humans are amazing.

Thank you +Charles Filipponi​ for sharing!

#extraordinary #music #Rachmaninoff

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2017-04-04 04:33:17 (0 comments; 3 reshares; 10 +1s; )Open 

Explore Mount Everest in 3D. :)

Experience the harrowing trek to the summit of the Earth’s highest mountain.

Website:
http://www.explore-everest.com/mt-everest-journey.html

Himalayan Foundation:
https://www.himalayan-foundation.org/

Discovery: Everest Rescue
http://www.discovery.com/tv-shows/everest-rescue/

Discovery: VR
http://www.discoveryvr.com/watch/route-to-everest

#everest #mountainclimbing #3D




Explore Mount Everest in 3D. :)

Experience the harrowing trek to the summit of the Earth’s highest mountain.

Website:
http://www.explore-everest.com/mt-everest-journey.html

Himalayan Foundation:
https://www.himalayan-foundation.org/

Discovery: Everest Rescue
http://www.discovery.com/tv-shows/everest-rescue/

Discovery: VR
http://www.discoveryvr.com/watch/route-to-everest

#everest #mountainclimbing #3D


___

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2017-03-28 11:02:26 (0 comments; 1 reshares; 4 +1s; )Open 

I Took the AI Class Facebookers Are Literally Sprinting to Get Into


http://flip.it/Q0DoXg

I Took the AI Class Facebookers Are Literally Sprinting to Get Into


http://flip.it/Q0DoXg___

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2017-03-22 02:39:10 (0 comments; 0 reshares; 9 +1s; )Open 

Mars: virtual flight, real images. Getting ready for our manned mission. :)

Martian Flyby Simulated

Using the static, high-resolution, but greyscale images provided by NASA's HiRise Mars-orbiting camera, Finnish filmmaker and self-confessed Space enthusiast, Jan Fröjdman, has gone to the trouble of manually selecting and interpolating more than 33,000 reference points between images, and then rendering a coloured, dynamic, 3D simulation of the view one might get if, rather being in orbit, we were to be in a futuristic spacecraft with a viewing portal, flying over the surface of Mars.


📖🖼🎬
To fully appreciate the Martian landscape, one needs dimension and movement. In the video you see here, Finnish filmmaker Jan Fröjdman transformed HiRISE imagery into a dynamic, three-dimensional, overhead view of the Red Planet—no glasses required.

For Fröjdman, creating the flyover effect was like assembling a puzzle. He began by colorizing the photographs (HiRISE captures images in grayscale). He then identified distinctive features in each of the anaglyphs—craters, canyons, mountains–and matched them between image pairs. To create the panning 3-D effect, he stitched the images together along his reference points and rendered them as frames in a video. “It was a very slow process,” he says.

More here (article): https://goo.gl/qpyGh2


🎬📖
The anaglyph images of Mars taken by the HiRISE camera holds information about the topography of Mars surface. There are hundreds of high-resolution images of this type. This gives the opportunity to create different studies in 3D. In this film I have chosen some locations and processed the images into panning video clips. There is a feeling that you are flying above Mars looking down watching interesting locations on the planet. And there are really great places on Mars! I would love to see images taken by a landscape photographer on Mars, especially from the polar regions. But I'm afraid I won't see that kind of images during my lifetime.

More text and video (Vimeo ~ 5mins.): https://goo.gl/Szcx4O
Please watch the film in 2K if possible for greater details.



📖🖼🖼🎬
Jan Fröjdman (blog post): https://goo.gl/xZ1GvP


HiRise: https://goo.gl/b3UjX8


Image from article.
Originally HiRise NASA/JPL/University of Arizona___Mars: virtual flight, real images. Getting ready for our manned mission. :)

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2017-03-21 11:25:49 (0 comments; 2 reshares; 4 +1s; )Open 

Quantum app.. Great way to explore this amazing phenomenon.

https://play.google.com/store/apps/details?id=brychta.stepan.quantum_en

https://youtu.be/2Lf9ByVLUG8

See also:

http://spaceexplorer.eu

Beautiful website by the creator of the Quantum app.

http://spaceexplorer.eu

#science #physics #education

Quantum app.. Great way to explore this amazing phenomenon.

https://play.google.com/store/apps/details?id=brychta.stepan.quantum_en

https://youtu.be/2Lf9ByVLUG8

See also:

http://spaceexplorer.eu

Beautiful website by the creator of the Quantum app.

http://spaceexplorer.eu

#science #physics #education___

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2017-03-17 03:42:22 (4 comments; 0 reshares; 17 +1s; )Open 

It's not family values when you don't value families. We can do better.

#parentalleave

Bernie Sanders 'Quote Of The Day'
"The reality is that when it comes to supporting real family values like paid leave, the United States lags behind every major country on earth, and virtually all poor countries as well. Out of 188 countries, the U.S and Papa New Guinea are the only two that don’t provide some form of paid leave. Or, to put that another way: the citizens of every other major industrialized country get more protection for their families than we do here in the United States."

#StillSanders #leading #OurRevolution #MyDailyBernie
___It's not family values when you don't value families. We can do better.

#parentalleave

2017-02-26 05:49:30 (1 comments; 2 reshares; 7 +1s; )Open 

Linux kernel creator Linus Torvalds weighs in on git and SHA1.

#computer #science #code #SHA1 #git

I thought I'd write an update on git and SHA1, since the SHA1 collision attack was so prominently in the news.

Quick overview first, with more in-depth explanation below:

(1) First off - the sky isn't falling. There's a big difference between using a cryptographic hash for things like security signing, and using one for generating a "content identifier" for a content-addressable system like git.

(2) Secondly, the nature of this particular SHA1 attack means that it's actually pretty easy to mitigate against, and there's already been two sets of patches posted for that mitigation.

(3) And finally, there's actually a reasonably straightforward transition to some other hash that won't break the world - or even old git repositories.

Anyway, that's the high-level overview, you can stop there unless you are interested in some more details (keyword: "some". If you want more, you should participate in the git mailing list discussions - I'm posting this for the casual git users that might just want to see some random comments).

Anyway, on to the "details":

(1) What's the difference between using a hash for security vs using a hash for object identifiers in source control management?

Both want to use cryptographic hashes, but they want to use them for different reasons.

A hash that is used for security is basically a statement of trust: and if you can fool somebody, you can make them trust you when they really shouldn't. The point of a cryptographic hash there is to basically be the source of trust, so in many ways the hash is supposed to fundamentally protect against people you cannot trust other ways. When such a hash is broken, the whole point of the hash basically goes away.

In contrast, in a project like git, the hash isn't used for "trust". I don't pull on peoples trees because they have a hash of a4d442663580. Our trust is in people, and then we end up having lots of technology measures in place to secure the actual data.

The reason for using a cryptographic hash in a project like git is because it pretty much guarantees that there is no accidental clashes, and it's also a really really good error detection thing. Think of it like "parity on steroids": it's not able to correct for errors, but it's really really good at detecting corrupt data.

Other SCM's have used things like CRC's for error detection, although honestly the most common error handling method in most SCM's tends to be "tough luck, maybe your data is there, maybe it isn't, I don't care".

So in git, the hash is used for de-duplication and error detection, and the "cryptographic" nature is mainly because a cryptographic hash is really good at those things.

I say "mainly", because yes, in git we also end up using the SHA1 when we use "real" cryptography for signing the resulting trees, so the hash does end up being part of a certain chain of trust. So we do take advantage of some of the actual security features of a good cryptographic hash, and so breaking SHA1 does have real downsides for us.

Which gets us to ...

(2) Why is this particular attack fairly easy to mitigate against at least within the context of using SHA1 in git?

There's two parts to this one: one is simply that the attack is not a pre-image attack, but an identical-prefix collision attach. That, in turn, has two big effects on mitigation:

(a) the attacker can't just generate any random collision, but needs to be able to control and generate both the "good" (not really) and the "bad" object.

(b) you can actually detect the signs of the attack in both sides of the collision.

In particular, (a) means that it's really hard to hide the attack in data that is transparent. What do I mean by "transparent"? I mean that you actually see and react to all of the data, rather than having some "blob" of data that acts like a black box, and you only see the end results.

In the pdf examples, the pdf format acted as the "black box", and what you see is the printout which has only a very indirect relationship to the pdf encoding.

But if you use git for source control like in the kernel, the stuff you really care about is source code, which is very much a transparent medium. If somebody inserts random odd generated crud in the middle of your source code, you will absolutely notice.

Similarly, the git internal data structures are actually very transparent too, even if most users might not consider them so. There are places you could try to hide things in (in particular, things like commits that have a NUL character that ends printout in "git log"), but "git fsck" already warns about those kinds of shenanigans.

So fundamentally, if the data you primarily care about is that kind of transparent source code, the attack is pretty limited to begin with. You'll see the attack. It's not silently switching your data under from you.

"But I track pdf files in git, and I might not notice them being replaced under me?"

That's a very valid concern, and you'd want your SCM to help you even with that kind of opaque data where you might not see how people are doing odd things to it behind your back. Which is why the second part of mitigation is that (b): it's fairly trivial to detect the fingerprints of using this attack.

So we already have patches on the git mailing list which will detect when somebody has used this attack to bring down the cost of generating SHA1 collisions. They haven't been merged yet, but the good thing about those mitigation measures is that not everybody needs to even run them: if you host your project on something like http://github.com or kernel.org, it's already sufficient if the hosting place runs the checks every once in a while - you'll get notified if somebody poisoned your well.

And finally, the "yes, git will eventually transition away from SHA1". There's a plan, it doesn't look all that nasty, and you don't even have to convert your repository. There's a lot of details to this, and it will take time, but because of the issues above, it's not like this is a critical "it has to happen now thing".___Linux kernel creator Linus Torvalds weighs in on git and SHA1.

#computer #science #code #SHA1 #git

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2017-02-25 03:19:15 (0 comments; 8 reshares; 48 +1s; )Open 

Amazing work by SpaceX. :)

#space #exploration #boldlygo

Here is a very clear GIF of the recent Space X landing. ___Amazing work by SpaceX. :)

#space #exploration #boldlygo

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2017-02-18 14:13:18 (6 comments; 0 reshares; 9 +1s; )Open 

President Trump wants your input. Take a moment to share your opinion regarding the media.

#media #press #facts #propaganda

I just learned about this survey being taken by Trump.
https://www.donaldjtrump.com/lp/mainstream-media-accountability-survey
I answered it, not the way he would like to hear. They ask for your name and email at the end, and I was happy to supply mine, but do be warned that you need to do so.___President Trump wants your input. Take a moment to share your opinion regarding the media.

#media #press #facts #propaganda

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2016-12-31 12:10:21 (2 comments; 2 reshares; 12 +1s; )Open 

Russian hackers penetrated U.S. electricity grid through a utility in Vermont
http://wapo.st/2hDurhl

Russian hackers penetrated U.S. electricity grid through a utility in Vermont
http://wapo.st/2hDurhl___

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2016-12-21 00:46:24 (6 comments; 1 reshares; 11 +1s; )Open 

Interesting times. We should be investing in the birth of a new scientific Renaissance - our human potential is collectively greater than ever. Instead, we seem to cheer the expression of the more base aspects of our humanity: selfishness, greed, vanity. If we lose sight of the principles and values that form the foundation of the republic and if we fail to uphold the desire and resolve to practice them, then our experiment may have been heartbreakingly brief.

How Republics End http://nyti.ms/2hYluPc

Interesting times. We should be investing in the birth of a new scientific Renaissance - our human potential is collectively greater than ever. Instead, we seem to cheer the expression of the more base aspects of our humanity: selfishness, greed, vanity. If we lose sight of the principles and values that form the foundation of the republic and if we fail to uphold the desire and resolve to practice them, then our experiment may have been heartbreakingly brief.

How Republics End http://nyti.ms/2hYluPc___

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2016-12-19 02:45:09 (1 comments; 0 reshares; 6 +1s; )Open 

The use of Python as a data science tool has been on the rise over the past few years: 54% of the respondents of the latest O'Reilly Data Science Salary Survey indicated that they used Python. The results of the 2015 survey indicated that 51% of the respondents used Python.

The use of Python as a data science tool has been on the rise over the past few years: 54% of the respondents of the latest O'Reilly Data Science Salary Survey indicated that they used Python. The results of the 2015 survey indicated that 51% of the respondents used Python.___

2016-12-19 02:25:04 (4 comments; 0 reshares; 4 +1s; )Open 

Last Wednesday I attended the first meeting of the Data-Science Education Roundtable. This is a group initially put together by the Statistics branch of the National Research Council, but later joined by the Computer-Science branch and also ACM, so there was a bit of balance in the viewpoints.

The first meeting was devoted to getting the lay of the land, and there were presentations from four viewpoints: Stat. CS, Engineering, and Math, as well as presentations from various potential employers of the students to be educated. The entire proceedings will eventually be posted at nas.edu/data-science-education-roundtable-1. At the moment, it is just a skeleton, however.

Interestingly, there was little disagreement about the components of DS degrees, which I might summarize as Algorithms + Statistics + Machine Learning + Cloud Computing (i.e., MapReduce and the things that followed). A... more »

Last Wednesday I attended the first meeting of the Data-Science Education Roundtable. This is a group initially put together by the Statistics branch of the National Research Council, but later joined by the Computer-Science branch and also ACM, so there was a bit of balance in the viewpoints.

The first meeting was devoted to getting the lay of the land, and there were presentations from four viewpoints: Stat. CS, Engineering, and Math, as well as presentations from various potential employers of the students to be educated. The entire proceedings will eventually be posted at nas.edu/data-science-education-roundtable-1. At the moment, it is just a skeleton, however.

Interestingly, there was little disagreement about the components of DS degrees, which I might summarize as Algorithms + Statistics + Machine Learning + Cloud Computing (i.e., MapReduce and the things that followed). A surprise that there seemed to be many participants who viewed a PhD program in DS as premature. I disagree, and surely at Stanford and many other places I know about, students are gaining PhD's with theses that are squarely in the DS area.___

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2016-12-02 20:09:38 (0 comments; 1 reshares; 13 +1s; )Open 

The writing is on the wall

This is the main building of the Environmental Protection Agency or EPA, right across from Trump Hotel in Washington DC.   A lot of us are protesting the guy Trump hired to demolish the EPA.  His name is  Myron Ebell.  He's a climate change denier whose work has long been funded by fossil fuel industries.

Join the battle:

http://climatetruth.org/rebelagainstebell
http://petitions.moveon.org/sign/keep-myron-ebell-from

George Monbiot provides more detail:

Yes, Donald Trump’s politics are incoherent. But those who surround him know just what they want, and his lack of clarity enhances their power. To understand what is coming, we need to understand who they are. I know all too well, because I have spent the past 15 years fighting them.

Over this time, I have watched as tobacco, coal,oil, ... more »

The writing is on the wall

This is the main building of the Environmental Protection Agency or EPA, right across from Trump Hotel in Washington DC.   A lot of us are protesting the guy Trump hired to demolish the EPA.  His name is  Myron Ebell.  He's a climate change denier whose work has long been funded by fossil fuel industries.

Join the battle:

http://climatetruth.org/rebelagainstebell
http://petitions.moveon.org/sign/keep-myron-ebell-from

George Monbiot provides more detail:

Yes, Donald Trump’s politics are incoherent. But those who surround him know just what they want, and his lack of clarity enhances their power. To understand what is coming, we need to understand who they are. I know all too well, because I have spent the past 15 years fighting them.

Over this time, I have watched as tobacco, coal, oil, chemicals and biotech companies have poured billions of dollars into an international misinformation machine composed of thinktanks, bloggers and fake citizens’ groups. Its purpose is to portray the interests of billionaires as the interests of the common people, to wage war against trade unions and beat down attempts to regulate business and tax the very rich. Now the people who helped run this machine are shaping the government.

I first encountered the machine when writing about climate change. The fury and loathing directed at climate scientists and campaigners seemed incomprehensible until I realised they were fake: the hatred had been paid for. The bloggers and institutes whipping up this anger were funded by oil and coal companies.

Among those I clashed with was Myron Ebell of the Competitive Enterprise Institute (CEI). The CEI calls itself a thinktank, but looks to me like a corporate lobbying group. It is not transparent about its funding, but we now know it has received $2m from ExxonMobil, more than $4m from a group called the Donors Trust (which represents various corporations and billionaires), $800,000 from groups set up by the tycoons Charles and David Koch, and substantial sums from coal, tobacco and pharmaceutical companies.

For years, Ebell and the CEI have attacked efforts to limit climate change, through lobbying, lawsuits and campaigns. An advertisement released by the institute had the punchline “Carbon dioxide: they call it pollution. We call it life.”

It has sought to eliminate funding for environmental education, lobbied against the Endangered Species Act, harried climate scientists and campaigned in favour of mountaintop removal by coal companies. In 2004, Ebell sent a memo to one of George W Bush’s staffers calling for the head of the Environmental Protection Agency to be sacked. Where is Ebell now? Oh – leading Trump’s transition team for the Environmental Protection Agency.

It's not just Ebell: Trump is hiring lots of creatures from the swamp of fake industry-funded "research institutes".  For details, and links providing evidence, go here:

https://www.theguardian.com/commentisfree/2016/nov/30/donald-trump-george-monbiot-misinformation___

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2016-11-12 19:58:38 (0 comments; 0 reshares; 13 +1s; )Open 

The loser won

Having lost the popular vote, Trump is busy deleting tweets from 2012 in which he falsely claimed that Obama did the same - and argued that therefore "We should have a revolution in this country!" 

http://www.theverge.com/2016/11/11/13596932/trump-protestors-electoral-college-tweets

The loser won

Having lost the popular vote, Trump is busy deleting tweets from 2012 in which he falsely claimed that Obama did the same - and argued that therefore "We should have a revolution in this country!" 

http://www.theverge.com/2016/11/11/13596932/trump-protestors-electoral-college-tweets___

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2016-11-10 23:07:29 (0 comments; 0 reshares; 12 +1s; )Open 

American leadership. Climate change is becoming expensive in the short-term as well as the long-term. Fiscal conservatives around the world should be supporting a solid plan for working together to address this issue. American needs to lead the effort, not run from it.

#climatechange #usEPA #sciencematters

This man must be stopped

Trump has said on Twitter that:

the concept of global warming was created by and for the Chinese in order to make US manufacturing non-competitive.

While he later denied saying this, he is now threatening to put Myron Ebell in charge of his Environmental Protection Agency "transition team".  Transition team?  Yes, apparently Trump wants to weaken or destroy this agency.  And if you don't know Myron Ebell, you'd better learn about him now!

Myron Ebell has said:

I don’t want to say it’s a disaster, but I think it is potentially a disaster for humankind and not necessarily any good for the planet.

What's he talking about?  Global warming?  No, he's talking about the Paris agreement to fight global warming.  He claims global warming is, on the whole, a good thing.  Why?

In fact, there is no question that most people prefer less severe winters.

After running an organization devoted to eliminating protection for endangered species, he switched to heading the Global Warming and International Environmental Policy project at an institute funded by Exxon.  His job was to sow doubt and create confusion about climate change.

But he burst into fame in 2002.  That's when he helped Bush's "council on environmental policy" water down a key report on global warming.  He was caught by Greenpeace, and a scandal erupted.  

He also tried to get the head of the Environmental Protection Agency fired.  Back then it was Christine Todd Whitman.   In a secret memo to Philip Cooney, head of Bush's anti-environmental council, Ebell wrote:

It seems to me that the folks at the EPA are the obvious fall guys, and we would only hope that the fall guy (or gal) should be as high up as possible. I have done several interviews and have stressed that the president needs to get everyone rowing in the same direction. Perhaps tomorrow we will call for [Christine Todd Whitman] to be fired. I know that that doesn't sound like much help, but it seems to me that our only leverage to push you in the right direction is to drive a wedge between the President and those in the Administration who think they are serving the president's best interests by publishing this rubbish.

"This rubbish" was a report put out by the EPA warning people of the dangers of climate change.

So, get ready: this guy will be working full-time to cause trouble!

Here's a good Scientific American article to get you up to speed:

https://www.scientificamerican.com/article/trump-picks-top-climate-skeptic-to-lead-epa-transition/

Here's Myron Ebell on Wikipedia:

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Myron_Ebell

Here's Myron Ebell rewriting scientific reports:

https://www.theguardian.com/environment/2005/jun/09/science.environment

Myron Ebell saying global warming is, on the whole, a good thing:

http://www.forbes.com/forbes/2006/1225/038.html

Here's Trump's claim that climate change is a notion invented by the Chinese:

http://www.theverge.com/2016/9/26/13067918/donald-trump-presidential-debate-2016-climate-change-hoax

#savetheplanet___American leadership. Climate change is becoming expensive in the short-term as well as the long-term. Fiscal conservatives around the world should be supporting a solid plan for working together to address this issue. American needs to lead the effort, not run from it.

#climatechange #usEPA #sciencematters

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2016-11-09 11:26:15 (0 comments; 0 reshares; 6 +1s; )Open 

Progress in Alzheimer's understanding. Discovering how Alzheimer's harms the brain can help us alleviate it. #Alzheimers #research #sciencematters

Brain Cell ‘Executioner’ Identified
Despite their different triggers, the same molecular chain of events appears to be responsible for brain cell death from strokes, injuries and even such neurodegenerative diseases as Alzheimer’s. Now, researchers at Johns Hopkins say they have pinpointed the protein at the end of that chain of events, one that delivers the fatal strike by carving up a cell’s DNA. The find, they say, potentially opens up a new avenue for the development of drugs to prevent, stop or weaken the process.

The new experiments, conducted in laboratory-grown cells, build on earlier work by research partners Ted Dawson, M.D., Ph.D., now director of the Institute for Cell Engineering at the Johns Hopkins University School of Medicine, and Valina Dawson, Ph.D., professor of neurology. Their research groups found that injury, stroke, Alzheimer’s disease, Parkinson’s disease and the rare, fatal genetic disorder Huntington’s disease share a distinct form of “programmed” brain cell death they named parthanatos after the personification of death in Greek mythology and PARP, an enzyme involved in the process.

Source & further reading:
http://www.hopkinsmedicine.org/news/media/releases/brain_cell_executioner_identified

Image: Nucleus of a cell undergoing parthanatos.
Credit: Yingfei Wang and I-Hsun Wu/Johns Hopkins Medicine

#neuroscience   #research   #humanbrain   #genetic   #parthanatos  ___Progress in Alzheimer's understanding. Discovering how Alzheimer's harms the brain can help us alleviate it. #Alzheimers #research #sciencematters

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2016-11-09 00:54:22 (9 comments; 1 reshares; 10 +1s; )Open 

+The New York Times​​​ provides amazing live data graphics as the election unfolds.http://www.nytimes.com/elections/results/president

+The New York Times​​​ provides amazing live data graphics as the election unfolds.http://www.nytimes.com/elections/results/president___

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2016-11-04 22:21:29 (0 comments; 0 reshares; 8 +1s; )Open 

Physics Tweak Solves Five of the Biggest Problems in One Go

Unifying inflation with the Axion, dark matter, baryogenesis and the Seesaw Mechanism

Dubbed SMASH, the model is based on the standard model of particle physics, but has a few bits tacked on. The standard model is a collection of particles and forces that describes the building blocks of the universe. Although it has passed every test thrown at it, it can’t explain some phenomena.

SMASH is several theories smashed together, says co-author Andreas Ringwald at the German Electron Synchrotron, DESY, in Hamburg. It builds on Shaposhnikov’s model from 2005, which added three neutrinos to the three already known.
This field includes two particles: the Axion, a dark horse candidate for dark matter, and the Inflaton, the particle behind inflation.
A... more »

Physics Tweak Solves Five of the Biggest Problems in One Go

Unifying inflation with the Axion, dark matter, baryogenesis and the Seesaw Mechanism

Dubbed SMASH, the model is based on the standard model of particle physics, but has a few bits tacked on. The standard model is a collection of particles and forces that describes the building blocks of the universe. Although it has passed every test thrown at it, it can’t explain some phenomena.

SMASH is several theories smashed together, says co-author Andreas Ringwald at the German Electron Synchrotron, DESY, in Hamburg. It builds on Shaposhnikov’s model from 2005, which added three neutrinos to the three already known.
This field includes two particles: the Axion, a dark horse candidate for dark matter, and the Inflaton, the particle behind inflation.

As a final flourish, SMASH uses the field to introduce the solution to a fifth puzzle: the strong CP problem, which helps explain why there is more matter than antimatter in the universe.

#ParticlePhysics #Cosmology #AstroParticlePhysics #Astrophysics #StandardModel #Inflation #DarkMatter #SeesawMechanism___

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2016-11-04 22:19:10 (1 comments; 0 reshares; 5 +1s; )Open 

Via NASA's +Bobak Ferdowsi​ :) Go student scientists!

#mars #stem #education #nasa

Students, we need your help! Design an object that could be used by astronauts to stay physically healthy on a 3-year #JourneyToMars. Get the details: http://go.nasa.gov/2ezdBxb___Via NASA's +Bobak Ferdowsi​ :) Go student scientists!

#mars #stem #education #nasa

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2016-10-09 13:16:27 (1 comments; 0 reshares; 25 +1s; )Open 

___

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2016-10-07 23:30:47 (0 comments; 0 reshares; 8 +1s; )Open 

Systems of systems

In January of this year, I was contacted by a company called Metron Scientific Solutions. They asked if I’d like to join them in a project to use category theory to design and evaluate complex, adaptive systems of systems.

What’s a system of systems?

It’s a system made of many disparate parts, each of which is a complex system in its own right. The biosphere is a system of systems. But so far, people usually use this buzzword for large human-engineered systems where the different components are made by different organizations, perhaps over a long period of time, with changing and/or incompatible standards. This makes it impossible to fine-tune everything in a top-down way and have everything fit together seamlessly.

So, systems of systems are inherently messy. And yet we need them.

Metron was applying for a grantfrom ... more »

Systems of systems

In January of this year, I was contacted by a company called Metron Scientific Solutions. They asked if I’d like to join them in a project to use category theory to design and evaluate complex, adaptive systems of systems.

What’s a system of systems?

It’s a system made of many disparate parts, each of which is a complex system in its own right. The biosphere is a system of systems. But so far, people usually use this buzzword for large human-engineered systems where the different components are made by different organizations, perhaps over a long period of time, with changing and/or incompatible standards. This makes it impossible to fine-tune everything in a top-down way and have everything fit together seamlessly.

So, systems of systems are inherently messy. And yet we need them.

Metron was applying for a grant from DARPA, the Defense Advanced Research Projects Agency, which funds a lot of cutting-edge research for the US military. It may seem surprising that DARPA is explicitly interested in using category theory to study systems of systems. But it actually shouldn’t be surprising: their mission is to try many things and find a few that work. They are willing to take risks.

Metron was applying for a grant under a DARPA program run by John S. Paschkewitz, who is interested in new paradigms and foundational approaches for the design of systems of systems.

This program is called CASCADE, short for Complex Adaptive System Composition and Design Environment.  Here’s the idea:

Complex interconnected systems are increasingly becoming part of everyday life in both military and civilian environments. In the military domain, air-dominance system-of-systems concepts, such as those being developed under DARPA’s SoSITE effort, envision manned and unmanned aircraft linked by networks that seamlessly share data and resources in real time. In civilian settings such as urban “smart cities”, critical infrastructure systems — water, power, transportation, communications and cyber — are similarly integrated within complex networks. Dynamic systems such as these promise capabilities that are greater than the mere sum of their parts, as well as enhanced resilience when challenged by adversaries or natural disasters. But they are difficult to model and cannot be systematically designed using today’s tools, which are simply not up to the task of assessing and predicting the complex interactions among system structures and behaviors that constantly change across time and space.

To overcome this challenge, DARPA has announced the Complex Adaptive System Composition and Design Environment (CASCADE) program. The goal of CASCADE is to advance and exploit novel mathematical techniques able to provide a deeper understanding of system component interactions and a unified view of system behaviors. The program also aims to develop a formal language for composing and designing complex adaptive systems.

“CASCADE aims to fundamentally change how we design systems for real-time resilient response within dynamic, unexpected environments,” said John Paschkewitz, DARPA program manager. “Existing modeling and design tools invoke static ‘playbook’ concepts that don’t adequately represent the complexity of, say, an airborne system of systems with its constantly changing variables, such as enemy jamming, bad weather, or loss of one or more aircraft. As another example, this program could inform the design of future forward-deployed military surgical capabilities by making sure the functions, structures, behaviors and constraints of the medical system — such as surgeons, helicopters, communication networks, transportation, time, and blood supply — are accurately modeled and understood.”

CASCADE could also help the Department of Defense fulfill its role of providing humanitarian assistance in response to a devastating earthquake, hurricane or other catastrophe, by developing comprehensive response models that account for the many components and interactions inherent in such missions, whether in urban or austere environs.

“We need new design and representation tools to ensure resilience of buildings, electricity, drinking water supply, healthcare, roads and sanitation when disaster strikes,” Paschkewitz said. “CASCADE could help develop models that would provide civil authorities, first responders and assisting military commanders with the sequence and timing of critical actions they need to take for saving lives and restoring critical infrastructure. In the stress following a major disaster, models that could do that would be invaluable.”

The CASCADE program seeks expertise in the following areas:

• Applied mathematics, especially in category theory, algebraic geometry and topology, and sheaf theory

• Operations research, control theory and planning, especially in stochastic and non-linear control

• Modeling and applications responsive to challenges in battlefield medicine logistics and platforms, adaptive logistics, reliability, and maintenance

• Search and rescue platforms and modeling

• Adaptive and resilient urban infrastructure

Metron already designs systems of systems used in Coast Guard search and rescue missions. Their grant proposal was to use category theory and operads to do this better. They needed an academic mathematician as part of their team: that was one of the program’s requirements. So they asked if I was interested.

I had mixed feelings.

On the one hand, I come from a line of peaceniks including Joan Baez, Mimi Fariña, their father the physicist Albert Baez, and my parents. I don’t like how the US government puts so much energy into fighting wars rather than solving our economic, social and environmental problems. It’s interesting that ‘systems of systems engineering’, as a field, is so heavily dominated by the US military. It’s an important subject that could be useful in many ways. We need it for better energy grids, better adaptation to climate change, and so on. I dream of using it to develop ‘ecotechnology’: technology that works with nature instead of trying to battle it and defeat it. But it seems the US doesn’t have the money, or the risk-taking spirit, to fund applications of category theory to those subjects.

On the other hand, I was attracted by the prospect of using category theory to design complex adaptive systems — and using it not just to tackle foundational issues, but also concrete challenges. I liked the idea of working with a team of people who are more practical than me. In this project, a big part of my job would be to write and publish papers: that’s something I can do. But Metron had other people who would try to create prototypes of software for helping the Coast Guard design search and rescue missions.

So I was torn.

In fact, because of my qualms, I’d already turned down an offer from another company that was writing a proposal for the CASCADE program. But the Metron project seemed slightly more attractive — I’m not sure why, perhaps because it was described to me in a more concrete way. And unlike that other company, Metron has a large existing body of software for evaluating complex systems, which should help me focus my theoretical ideas. The interaction between theory and practice can make theory a lot more interesting.

Something tipped the scales and I said yes. We applied for the grant, and we got it.

And so, an interesting adventure began. It will last for 3 years, and I’ll say more about it soon.

There's some interesting discussion about this on my blog:

https://johncarlosbaez.wordpress.com/2016/10/02/complex-adaptive-system-design-part-1/

I decided to simply copy my blog post from there to here, word for word.  So just go down to the comments!___

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2016-10-02 21:33:12 (0 comments; 1 reshares; 5 +1s; )Open 

Google released a dataset of 9 million image annotated with labels spanning over 6,000 categories. The labels cover more real-life entities than the 1,000 ImageNet classes, there are enough images to train a deep neural network from scratch, and the images are listed as having a Creative Commons Attribution license.

The annotations in turn were created automatically with a vision model similar to Google Cloud Vision API, but validated by human raters.

Google released a dataset of 9 million image annotated with labels spanning over 6,000 categories. The labels cover more real-life entities than the 1,000 ImageNet classes, there are enough images to train a deep neural network from scratch, and the images are listed as having a Creative Commons Attribution license.

The annotations in turn were created automatically with a vision model similar to Google Cloud Vision API, but validated by human raters.___

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2016-09-25 11:22:45 (1 comments; 0 reshares; 10 +1s; )Open 

Another fascinating week in science and technology - thanks +Mark Bruce​!

SciTech #ScienceSunday Digest - 39/2016.
Permalink here: http://www.scitechdigest.net/2016/09/fixing-dna-damage-modular-synbio.html

Fixing DNA damage, Modular synbio pellets, Towards head transplant, Custom acoustic holograms, Advanced drone systems, Wireless emotion detection, Atomically precise molecular syntheses, Metastasis gene therapy, Wireless MEMS, Sewing robot.

1. Compensating for DNA Damage
New work by the SENS Research Foundation has successfully achieved stable allotropic expression (in the nucleus), import (into mitochondria), and assembly into functional protein complexes able to rescue the cell and metabolism from mutations in the mitochondrial copies of these genes http://nar.oxfordjournals.org/content/early/2016/09/04/nar.gkw756.full. With some additional work and tricks the group hope the demonstration will allow all 13 mitochondrial genes to be moved to the nucleus and so solve one of the seven causes of aging damage, which will be important for things like sarcopenia https://www.fightaging.org/archives/2016/09/mitochondria-in-muscle-aging-and-sarcopenia/. In related work human cells engineered to contain a copy of the Dsup gene from tardigrades suffered 50% fewer DNA mutations as a result of prolonged exposure to X-rays http://www.u-tokyo.ac.jp/en/utokyo-research/research-news/demystifying-the-resilience-of-water-bears.html; the group hope to discover related protective genes that grant tardigrades their resilience and the possibility is open to gene therapies to reduce DNA mutation rates in humans.

2. Modular DNA Expression Pellets
You can now produce bulk freeze-dried pellets containing the key cellular components needed for translating DNA to proteins - all of the enzymes, ribosomes, tRNA, etc that you need to do this basic protein production process http://news.mit.edu/2016/to-produce-biopharmaceuticals-on-demand-just-add-water-0922. The idea is that you’d have a supply of these pellets (room temp shelf-life > 1 year) and when you needed to conduct a test or produce a protein you’d synthesise your gene or DNA of interest and add it to a pellet in some water. Such cell-free synthesis is an exciting technology, another tiny step towards atomically-precise synthesis, and something that would be immediately useful for remote or at-home applications above and beyond those demonstrated: protein vaccines, antimicrobial peptides, multi-enzyme production for metabolic pathway to create a complex organic drug molecule, antibodies for diagnostics, etc.

3. Towards Human Head Transplant
Recent previous work in mice and recent work in dogs a modified solution of polyethylene glycol has been used to at least partially restore the neural connections in animals whose spines have been almost completely severed https://www.newscientist.com/article/2106382-head-transplant-teams-new-animal-tests-fail-to-convince-critics/. In the recent dog experiment the dog apparently regained the ability to walk after about three weeks. Surgeon Sergio Canavero plans to use these result to press forward with the first ever human head transplant next year, using the technique to help reconnect the severed spine of the patient’s head with the donor body. Others demand that at the lack of detailed histology data of the supposedly repaired spinal interface damages the case for proceeding in humans.

4. Custom Acoustic Holograms
Three dimensional acoustic holograms take a big step forward with a new system that uses a single powerful ultrasound transducer onto which is placed a 3D printed block that has been precisely patterned to form an acoustic hologram; ultrasound passing through the block is forced into the desired custom waveform, to levitate objects for example http://spectrum.ieee.org/tech-talk/computing/hardware/3d-printed-plastic-blocks-generate-complex-acoustic-holograms. Such a device produces an acoustic hologram with a resolution 100 times greater than previously possible with separate transducer systems. While working in air or water it can’t produce a dynamically changing waveform to move objects, although movement along fixed paths is possible. One possible way around this is to encode multiple sound fields at different frequencies to add some dynamic options.

5. Delivery, Security, Navy, Surveillance Drones
First, a cool new long range delivery drone combines a biplane design with VTOL and fixed-wing capabilities to get the best of both worlds http://spectrum.ieee.org/automaton/robotics/drones/tu-delft-tailsitter. Second, Aptonomy is launching a large security drone to monitor protected areas and intercept tresspassers https://www.technologyreview.com/s/602412/drone-security-guard-scolds-intruders-from-the-sky/. Third, the Navy’s Blackwing drone platform is designed to be launched by submarine to provide wide-area surveillance and control of other drone and communications assets https://www.avinc.com/resources/view/press-releases/united-states-navy-demonstrates-cross-domain-communications-command-and-con. Finally, DARPA’s Aerial Dragnet system is being designed to provide persistent wide-area surveillance of areas such as cities via networked drone swarms http://www.kurzweilai.net/darpas-plan-for-total-surveillance-of-low-flying-drones-over-cities.

6. Detecting Emotions with Wireless Signals
EQ-Radio is a system that uses wireless signals and reflections to measure subtle changes in a person’s breathing and heart rhythms in order to determine their emotional state http://news.mit.edu/2016/detecting-emotions-with-wireless-signals-0920. In recent tests the system was able to correctly predict whether the person was excited, happy, angry, or sad 87% of the time. Capturing human emotional states in such a way, particularly when not visibly obvious, would have uses in a wide range of different areas including security monitoring crowded events, entertainment, health care, consumer preferences, etc. The system measures heartbeats as accurately as an ECG monitor with an error margin of 0.3%.

7. Atomically Precise Molecular Chains
The size of alternative atomically precise materials that can be synthesised keeps getting larger with this recent creation of atomically precise gold nanoparticles enshrouded with a functional molecular shell and linked via a precise molecular bridge https://www.jyu.fi/en/news/archive/2016/09/tiedote-2016-09-22-15-15-43-527149. Progressively building up such units would allow the creation of ever-larger precise crystalline materials with novel electrochemical properties given that the electron clouds of the metal cores become coupled. There are also efforts to build more sophisticated catalysts by precisely combining palladium with ruthenium in different mixed or shelled structures http://phys.org/news/2016-09-combining-elements-palladium-ruthenium-industry.html.

8. Gene Therapy Stops Cancer Metastasis
A gene therapy technique involving the delivery of microRNAs of a specific sequence into cancer cells is successful in preventing those cancer cells from undergoing metastatic spread through the body http://news.mit.edu/2016/gene-therapy-technique-prevent-cancer-metastasis-0919. These microRNAs specifically regulate and block the expression of the Palladin protein that helps drive metastasis, and was delivered in this case from microRNAs embedded in nanoparticles that were loaded into a hydrogel scaffold that was subsequently implanted into the mice. Such a tool is a viable approach to cancer treatment in combination with other cancer-killing approaches. In related gene editing news, Synthego launches a CRISPR kit for labs and DIYers to make CRISPR editing easier http://synbiobeta.com/news/synthego-announces-first-kind-crispr-kit/.

9. Wireless MEMS
A microelectromechanical device has been built that can be turned on and off with a nanowatt of power from three feet away, with the concept being to use the nanoresonator itself as the antenna for the device http://www.bu.edu/research/articles/wireless-microelectromechanical-systems/. The device achieved an efficiency of 15% and the group believes it might find application in optogenetics to provide a route for wireless power and communications to devices implanted in and interfaced to the brain. But such wireless MEMS could be used everywhere: for example a modified router might monitor wireless MEMS sensors placed on movable objects all over the house.

10. A Sewing Robot
Sewbo has launched a robot to automate garment sewing, such as the sewing that typically takes place en masse in sweatshops https://www.technologyreview.com/s/602423/a-robot-that-sews-could-take-the-sweat-out-of-sweatshops/. It doesn’t have the versatile flexibility of human sewing of course, and the key innovation is a method to temporarily hold the garment fabric in solid sheet form (it uses off-the-shelf sewing machines and robotic arms) that can be more easily picked up and guided by automated systems, but which when plunged into warm water removes the polymer to return it back to the soft flexible garment for sale and use. This gets us towards fully automated garment production.

SciTech Tip Jar: http://www.scitechdigest.net/p/donate.html
___Another fascinating week in science and technology - thanks +Mark Bruce​!

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2016-09-12 23:44:18 (1 comments; 6 reshares; 54 +1s; )Open 

___

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2016-08-22 16:06:10 (2 comments; 4 reshares; 10 +1s; )Open 

Leaked NSA hacking tool gets a lackluster review. From the article:
Stephen Checkoway, an Assistant Professor at the Department of Computer Science at the University of Illinois at Chicago, has analyzed some of the exploit code included in the recent Equation Group leak, and his verdict is "not impressed."

Over the past weekend, a person or group named The Shadow Brokers published a set of hacking tools they claim to have stolen from the Equation Group, a name given by security vendors to a cyber-espionage group believed to be linked to the US National Security Agency (NSA).

The hackers dumped a small sample of the tools so that security researchers can verify the dump's validity. The rest of the data is available in a password-protected encrypted archive.

The Shadow Brokers are currently holding an auction to sell the rest of the data to the... more »

Leaked NSA hacking tool gets a lackluster review. From the article:
Stephen Checkoway, an Assistant Professor at the Department of Computer Science at the University of Illinois at Chicago, has analyzed some of the exploit code included in the recent Equation Group leak, and his verdict is "not impressed."

Over the past weekend, a person or group named The Shadow Brokers published a set of hacking tools they claim to have stolen from the Equation Group, a name given by security vendors to a cyber-espionage group believed to be linked to the US National Security Agency (NSA).

The hackers dumped a small sample of the tools so that security researchers can verify the dump's validity. The rest of the data is available in a password-protected encrypted archive.

The Shadow Brokers are currently holding an auction to sell the rest of the data to the highest bidder.

#computerscience #hacking   #nsa  #security #exploit #espionage #ethics #ShadowBrokers #code

Read more: http://news.softpedia.com/news/computer-science-professor-gives-failing-grade-to-newly-leaked-nsa-hacking-tool-507482.shtml#ixzz4I4rQYHXn

Via +CodeProject Daily Developer News
http://www.codeproject.com/script/Mailouts/View.aspx?mlid=12379&_z=11048811___

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2016-08-13 21:51:23 (1 comments; 3 reshares; 19 +1s; )Open 

Interactive map shows comparative country size. Nicely done.

#geography #world #interactive #data #visualization #map

One of our most popular posts of the past week: Your country might be bigger - or smaller - than you thought.___Interactive map shows comparative country size. Nicely done.

#geography #world #interactive #data #visualization #map

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2016-08-04 13:37:44 (2 comments; 3 reshares; 26 +1s; )Open 

Have a wonderful 2-day! :)

Thanks +Amine Benaichouche​

In the format DD/MM/YY.
There is no special meaning or superstitious interpretations for this day. This remark is just for fun.

#Mathematics #MathematicsForFun ___Have a wonderful 2-day! :)

Thanks +Amine Benaichouche​

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2016-08-03 21:09:30 (0 comments; 0 reshares; 11 +1s; )Open 

The Sustainable Economic Development Assessment index tracks 160 countries across three elements: economic, sustainability and investment. These elements are made up of 10 dimensions, which include factors such as income equality, health, education and infrastructure.

#progress #policy #investment #economics #sustainability

And which countries are making the most progress?___The Sustainable Economic Development Assessment index tracks 160 countries across three elements: economic, sustainability and investment. These elements are made up of 10 dimensions, which include factors such as income equality, health, education and infrastructure.

#progress #policy #investment #economics #sustainability

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2016-08-03 12:46:00 (0 comments; 1 reshares; 7 +1s; )Open 

State of the Climate report. Environmental records shattered as climate change 'plays out before us'

"The world is careening towards an environment never experienced before by humans, with the temperature of the air and oceans breaking records, sea levels reaching historic highs and carbon dioxide surpassing a key milestone, a major international report has found."

"The “state of the climate” report, led by the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (Noaa) with input from hundreds of scientists from 62 countries, confirmed there was a “toppling of several symbolic mileposts” in heat, sea level rise and extreme weather in 2015."

http://www.theguardian.com/environment/2016/aug/02/environment-climate-change-records-broken-international-report

#climatechange 

State of the Climate report. Environmental records shattered as climate change 'plays out before us'

"The world is careening towards an environment never experienced before by humans, with the temperature of the air and oceans breaking records, sea levels reaching historic highs and carbon dioxide surpassing a key milestone, a major international report has found."

"The “state of the climate” report, led by the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (Noaa) with input from hundreds of scientists from 62 countries, confirmed there was a “toppling of several symbolic mileposts” in heat, sea level rise and extreme weather in 2015."

http://www.theguardian.com/environment/2016/aug/02/environment-climate-change-records-broken-international-report

#climatechange ___

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2016-08-02 13:55:14 (0 comments; 0 reshares; 4 +1s; )Open 

#67P looking very dramatic. Image shot from a distance of 8km by #OSIRIS camera on board #Rosetta . Image taken on 27 July 2016.

More here: https://planetgate.mps.mpg.de/Image_of_the_Day/public/OSIRIS_IofD_2016-08-02.html

Credit: ESA/Rosetta/MPS for OSIRIS Team MPS/UPD/LAM/IAA/SSO/INTA/UPM/DASP/IDA

#67P looking very dramatic. Image shot from a distance of 8km by #OSIRIS camera on board #Rosetta . Image taken on 27 July 2016.

More here: https://planetgate.mps.mpg.de/Image_of_the_Day/public/OSIRIS_IofD_2016-08-02.html

Credit: ESA/Rosetta/MPS for OSIRIS Team MPS/UPD/LAM/IAA/SSO/INTA/UPM/DASP/IDA___

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2016-07-21 00:53:55 (0 comments; 0 reshares; 23 +1s; )Open 

We Chose to Go To The Moon. Forty-seven years ago, on July 20, 1969, a curious courageous species stepped onto the surface of a distant world. After surviving the explosive force needed to escape Earth's gravity and enduring a three-day ride through nearly empty space to enter lunar orbit, Neil Armstrong and Buzz Aldrin piloted a lander down to the surface, descended a ladder, and spent two hours working on the moon. Then, perhaps even more amazing, on July 21, they launched part of the Eagle lander back up to dock with Michael Collins in the orbiting Columbia, blasted out of lunar orbit and rode the tiny return craft back home, falling into the Pacific Ocean near Hawaii. Hundreds of thousands of mission contributors helped us cross the final frontier - and got us back safely.

"Over the next three and a half years, 10 astronauts [would follow] in their footsteps. Gene Cernan,... more »

We Chose to Go To The Moon. Forty-seven years ago, on July 20, 1969, a curious courageous species stepped onto the surface of a distant world. After surviving the explosive force needed to escape Earth's gravity and enduring a three-day ride through nearly empty space to enter lunar orbit, Neil Armstrong and Buzz Aldrin piloted a lander down to the surface, descended a ladder, and spent two hours working on the moon. Then, perhaps even more amazing, on July 21, they launched part of the Eagle lander back up to dock with Michael Collins in the orbiting Columbia, blasted out of lunar orbit and rode the tiny return craft back home, falling into the Pacific Ocean near Hawaii. Hundreds of thousands of mission contributors helped us cross the final frontier - and got us back safely.

"Over the next three and a half years, 10 astronauts [would follow] in their footsteps. Gene Cernan, commander of the last Apollo mission leaves the lunar surface with these words: "We leave as we came and, God willing, as we shall return, with peace, and hope for all mankind." [1]

Apollo 11 Introduction (2 min video)

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=8il6rx-9a3c

Apollo 11 Flight Log, July 21, 1969: Launching from the Moon
with Apollo 11 Retrospective: 'One We Intend to Win' (4 min video)

http://www.space.com/26585-apollo-11-flight-log-july-21-1969.html

[1] https://www.nasa.gov/mission_pages/apollo/apollo11.html


#nasa   #apollo11   #lunarlanding   #spaceexploration   #humansareamazing  ___

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2016-07-14 03:21:57 (0 comments; 0 reshares; 7 +1s; )Open 

Global warming: demand the truth

After announcements that 2015 was the hottest year on record and February 2016 was the hottest month, the news station CNN aired five times more fossil fuel advertising than actual climate reporting!

So, please sign this petition to CNN.  Tell them: start reporting on climate change.   And please reshare this message.

A study by the group Media Matters showed that the American Petroleum Institute is getting more coverage than actual news about global warming.  This doesn't even include the ads from individual fossil fuel companies and the Koch brothers.

Here's some actual news, in case you hadn't heard:

1) The extent of Arctic sea ice in June was the lowest in recorded history for that month of the year: 260,000 square kilometers less than ever before!   It's on track to break allrecor... more »

Global warming: demand the truth

After announcements that 2015 was the hottest year on record and February 2016 was the hottest month, the news station CNN aired five times more fossil fuel advertising than actual climate reporting!

So, please sign this petition to CNN.  Tell them: start reporting on climate change.   And please reshare this message.

A study by the group Media Matters showed that the American Petroleum Institute is getting more coverage than actual news about global warming.  This doesn't even include the ads from individual fossil fuel companies and the Koch brothers.

Here's some actual news, in case you hadn't heard:

1) The extent of Arctic sea ice in June was the lowest in recorded history for that month of the year: 260,000 square kilometers less than ever before!   It's on track to break all records this year.

2) Recently every month from October until May has been the hottest on record worldwide.  June was the second hottest, since the El Niño is fading.

3) India recorded its hottest day ever on May 19th. The temperature in Phalodi hit 51 degrees Celsius (124 degrees Fahrenheit), and a nationwide drought has affected more than 300 million people marched on, leaving armed guards at dams, and reservoirs well below their usual levels.

4) Alaska, along with the rest of the Arctic, has experienced record-breaking heat this year.  Its average year-to-date temperature has been 5.5C above the long term average.

5) In the atmosphere, carbon dioxide has been increasing every year for decades - but this year the speed of increase is also record-breaking!   The increase for 2016 is expected to be 3.1 parts per million, up from an annual average of 2.1.

6) The Great Barrier Reef, a natural wonder and world heritage site, recently experienced its worst ever coral bleaching event.  An aerial study found that just 7% of the reef escaped bleaching. 

7) A new study in Nature argues that even despite the actions pledged in the Paris Agreement, the Earth is still on course for a temperature increase of 2.6 - 3.1C by the end of this century.  Read this:

http://www.nature.com/nature/journal/v534/n7609/full/nature18307.html

The Paris agreement is a step in the right direction, but we need to ratchet it up.  We can't afford to slack off now.  One piece of the puzzle is clear information about the crisis we're in.

----------------------------------------------

Media Matters writes:

In Week After Hottest Year Announcement, CNN Aired Less Than One Minute Of Climate-Related Coverage And 13.5 Minutes Of Oil Industry Ads.

From January 20 to January 26, CNN morning, daytime and primetime programming included only 57 seconds of coverage about climate change or the announcement that 2015 was the hottest year on record. Over that same time period, CNN aired 13.5 minutes of American Petroleum Institute ads. The climate-related segments included one on the January 21 edition of Early Start, in which anchor Christine Romans reported that 2015 was the hottest year on record and that officials say “the planet is still warming with no apparent change in the long term global warming rate.” Additionally, CNN senior legal analyst Jeffrey Toobin briefly mentioned Republican climate science denial during a discussion of Hillary Clinton’s emails on Anderson Cooper 360, and CNN host Fareed Zakaria noted that the “The World Economic Forum said this year that the greatest global risk is the failure of climate change mitigation and adaptation,” during a Fareed Zakaria GPS segment about a study finding that humans have entered a new geological epoch known as the Anthropocene.

Following Announcement That February 2016 Was Most Unusually Hot Month Ever, CNN Aired Four Minutes Of Climate-Related Coverage And 10 Minutes Of Fossil Fuel Ads.

In the one-week period beginning March 17, when NOAA released data showing that February 2016 was the most unusually hot month ever recorded, CNN aired only four minutes of coverage about climate change or the temperature record during its morning, daytime, and primetime coverage. During that same time period, CNN aired ten minutes of American Petroleum Institute ads. On March 18, CNN anchors Christine Romans and John Berman delivered nearly-identical reports on February’s “astounding” temperature record during the 4 a.m. and 5 a.m. editions of Early Start, respectively, but neither explicitly mentioned climate change or the role fossil fuel pollution and other human activities play in driving climate change. The March 20 edition of Fareed Zakaria GPS featured an interview with astronaut Piers Sellers about his climate change advocacy, followed by a brief report about International Energy Administration (IEA) data showing a decline in carbon emissions from energy production, which Zakaria described as “some good news on the climate front” and a “welcome update in the climate battle.” Finally, on the March 20 edition of New Day Sunday, anchor Christi Paul reported that major cities around the world were participating in Earth Hour, an event meant to bring awareness to climate change, by switching off their lights.

For more details see:

http://mediamatters.org/research/2016/04/25/study-cnn-viewers-see-far-more-fossil-fuel-advertising-climate-change-reporting/209985

Here's the data for the statements 1)-6):

https://www.theguardian.com/environment/2016/jun/17/seven-climate-records-set-so-far-in-2016

https://www.theguardian.com/environment/2016/jul/07/arctic-sea-ice-crashes-to-record-low-for-june

http://www.netnewsledger.com/2016/07/05/june-2016-second-hottest-june-ever/___

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