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NASA’s Starship Project aims to make interstellar travel a reality

It would be hard enough these days to find a human capable of playing a 12-inch LP, let alone an alien. So perhaps it is time for Nasa to update its welcome pack for extraterrestrials. The agency announced earlier this month that its Voyager 1 probe has left the solar…

Edward Snowden reveals new information about NSA spying on India

The US National Security Agency may have accessed computers within the Indian embassy in Washington and mission at the United Nations in New York as part of a huge clandestine effort to mine electronic data held by its south Asian ally. Documents released by the US whistleblower Edward Snowden also…

Zimbabwe poachers jailed 15 years for elephant poisoning

A Zimbabwe court on Wednesday sentenced three poachers to at least 15 years in prison each for poisoning and killing 81 elephants, state radio reported. A provincial magistrate sentenced 25-year-old Diyane Tshuma to 16 years in prison for poisoning elephants with cyanide at in Hwange National Park, in the west…

Senator Cruz’s 21-hour ‘Ted talk’ was one of the longest Senate speeches since 1900

Most US senators expect to pass a stopgap spending bill this week, but one lawmaker is so against it he took to the Senate floor for a marathon 21 hours. Few knew when Republican Senator Ted Cruz started speaking Tuesday afternoon that he would still be engaged in his talkathon,…

Engineers build computer of one-atom-thick carbon tubes

American engineers said Wednesday they had built the first computer made entirely of microscopic carbon “nanotubes” — a big step in the quest for faster, ever-smaller electronic devices. While performing only basic functions at speeds likened to a 1950s computer, the tiny machine was hailed as a breakthrough in the…

French socialists vow ‘unprecedented’ spending cuts in 2014 budget

France vowed “unprecedented” cuts in public spending to rein in its deficit without compromising much-needed growth, as it unveiled its draft 2014 budget on Wednesday. The pledge came as new figures showed the number of registered job seekers in France fell for the first time in more than two years.…

Police: Colorado woman beat to death homeless man she suspected of molesting child

A Colorado woman is accused of beating to death a homeless man she suspected of molesting a child. Police said 33-year-old Forsythia Owen admitted to killing Denzel Rainey after a child told her the man had sexually abused her. The 42-year-old Rainey’s body was found early Sunday in an Englewood,…

Ted Cruz declines Reid’s offer to continue speaking so he can make Limbaugh appointment

Sen. Ted Cruz (R-TX) and some of his Republicans ended their filibuster-style speech Wednesday against Obamacare after more than 21 hours. The tea party-backed Texas senator began speaking at 2:41 p.m. Tuesday and continued until shortly after noon Wednesday, in a speech that covered a wide range of unrelated topics,…

Stocks fall over fear of government shutdown and debt ceiling showdown

US stocks Wednesday moved lower as investors remained cautious amid a partisan budget squabble in Washington. About 40 minutes into trade, the Dow Jones Industrial Average was down 35.75 (0.23 percent) to 15,298.84. The broad-based S&P 500 lost 4.98 (0.29 percent) at 1,692.44, while the tech-rich Nasdaq Composite Index dropped…

Vatican says Jesus Christ ‘used tweets before everyone else’

Jesus Christ was the world’s first tweeter because his pronouncements were “brief and full of meaning”, Vatican cardinal Gianfranco Ravasi said Wednesday. Christ “used tweets before everyone else, with elementary phrases made up of fewer than 45 characters like ‘Love one another’”, said Ravasi, the Vatican’s equivalent of a culture…

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