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Study: Children who eat lots of fast food more likely to develop asthma

Children who frequently eat fast food are far likelier to have severe asthma compared to counterparts who tuck into fruit, a large international study published on Monday said. Researchers asked nearly half a million teenagers aged 13-14 and children aged six and seven about their eating habits and whether in…

DNA test reveals hair and eye color of unnamed Nazi prison victims

A new DNA test can restore at least part of the identity of long-dead people who left no trace of their image, scientists reported on Monday. The technique has revealed the hair and eye colours of unknown individuals slaughtered as sub-humans by the Nazis and of a mystery woman buried…

Tens of millions could face droughts and floods due to carbon emissions: report

Tens of millions of people may be spared droughts and floods by 2050 if Earth-warming carbon emissions peak in 2016 rather than 2030, scientists said on Sunday. Climate researchers in Britain and Germany said emission cuts now would delay some crippling impacts by decades and prevent some altogether. By 2050,…

Fire threatens top Australian telescope site Siding Spring Observatory

Australia’s top research observatory home to several telescopes used by scientists from around the world was under threat from wildfires on Sunday as hot weather and lightning storms stoked scores of new blazes. The Rural Fire Service (RFS) of New South Wales, Australia’s most populous state, issued an emergency warning…

Is there life on moons?

In “Avatar,” James Cameron envisaged an alien moon supporting life. Now, scientists believe such a scenario is as likely as life on another planet, writes Robin McKie. The inhabitants of Pandora, in James Cameron’s science-fiction epic Avatar, were a remarkable lot. Blue-skinned giants living in harmony with nature, they give…

Why IBM’s ‘Watson’ supercomputer can’t speak slang

A supposedly sophisticated computer failed to correctly use the risque terms in Urban Dictionary. So is slang the last frontier for artificial intelligence? “OMG, that’s a bullshit question. Eat one, you doofus.” One as-yet-to-be-determined day in the future, computers will talk back to us in this manner. But, thankfully, it…

Climate change deniers skeptical of 2012 data

A Fox News article on Thursday featured skeptics of a report from the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Agency that 2012 was “the warmest year ever for the nation.” The agency said that 2012 was a full degree Fahrenheit hotter than the previous record set in 1998. One climatologist from the…

Draft report from NCA makes clear link between climate change and extreme weather as groups urge Obama to take action

Future generations of Americans can expect to spend 25 days a year sweltering in temperatures above 100F (38C), with climate change on course to turn the country into a hotter, drier, and more disaster-prone place. The National Climate Assessment, released in draft form on Friday , provided the fullest picture…

America is totally sick right now: Flu, whooping cough and ‘winter vomiting disease’

The United States is currently in the grip of three separate epidemics.  According to LiveScience.com, influenza, whooping cough and norovirus –a stomach virus that causes diarrhea, vomiting and cramping — are all currently storming through the population, and some experts warn that the flu season is just getting started and…

New fossils confirm existence of ‘Hobbit humans’

New fossils discovered on an Indonesian island further point to the existence of a separate species of “Hobbit humans,” Discovery reported on Thursday. “The tiny people from Flores were not simply diseased modern humans,” said the lead author on the findings, Caley Orr. “The new species of human stood approximately…

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