Samsung Electronics unveils ARTIK, a new platform to make smart devices faster

Samsung Electronics unveils ARTIK, a new platform to make smart devices faster

Washington, May 14 : Samsung Electronics has released a new open platform called ARTIK that can develop smart devices faster and easier.

According to the TechCrunch web site, ARTIK includes three circuit boards, software support, developer tools and embedded encryption for security.

Alex Hawkinson, chief executive of SmartThings, which was acquired by Samsung, announced SmartThings Open Cloud to help developers create apps for their devices.


Astrology and celeb: How birth month influences personality traits

Astrology and celeb: How birth month influences personality traits

Washington, May 14 - A statistical analysis of birth month and celebrity has found that individuals born under certain astrological signs are likelier to become famous.

People's personalities tend to vary somewhat depending on the season in which they are born, and astrological signs may have developed as a useful system for remembering these patterns, as per an analysis by University of Connecticut researcher Mark Hamilton.

Such seasonal effects may not be clear in individuals, but can be discerned through averaging personality traits across large cohorts born at the same time of year.


Uber poaches head of US's biggest tech lobby from Google

Uber poaches head of US's biggest tech lobby from Google

Washington, May 14 : Uber has reportedly roped in Rachel Whetstone, the veteran head of Google's public policy and communications unit, as its new SVP of policy and communications in a bid to help it navigate the choppy waters ahead as it faces a slew of legal cases in myriad countries around the globe.

Whetstone will replace another big name, former Obama advisor David Plouffe, who joined Uber last year. Plouffe will now move on to become a chief advisor and board member, reported The Verge.

The former Google public policy and communications head has previously worked on the tech giant's issues with the EU and FTC in the United States.


Amazon launches new ad platform for mobile app developers

Amazon launches new ad platform for mobile app developers

Washington, May 14 : Amazon has announced that it is launching a new advertising platform for mobile app developers.

The new advertising platform is for mobile app developers who distribute their Android apps by way of Amazon's Appstore or Google Play.

According to the TechCrunch web site, the new platfprm is called 'Advertise Your App with Amazon' allows developers to promote their app across Amazon's network of Fire tablet wake-screens, as well as through mobile placements on the Amazon Mobile Ad Network.

The program is aimed at developers who are looking to acquire loyal users for their application.


Various financial incentives help smokers 'kick the butt'

Various financial incentives help smokers 'kick the butt'

Washington, May 14 : A new study has suggested that people are likelier to quit smoking if they are offered various financial incentives.

Four different financial incentive programs, each worth roughly 800 dollars over six months, all help more smokers kick the habit than providing free access to behavioral counseling and nicotine replacement therapy. Further, the way in which equally-sized payouts are structured influences their effectiveness.

The findings are the result of a year-long randomized trial among CVS Caremark (now CVS Health) employees that was conducted by researchers at the Perelman School of Medicine at the University of Pennsylvania.


Previously unseen `subatomic process` detected

Previously unseen `subatomic process` detected

Washington, May 14 - Two experiments at the Large Hadron Collider at the European Organization for Nuclear Research (CERN) in Geneva, Switzerland, have combined their results and observed a previously unseen subatomic process.

A joint analysis by the CMS and LHCb collaborations has established a new and extremely rare decay of the Bs particle (a heavy composite particle consisting of a bottom antiquark and a strange quark) into two muons. Theorists had predicted that this decay would only occur about four times out of a billion, and that is roughly what the two experiments observed.


Wechat will have more news feed ads

Wechat will have more news feed ads

Washington, May 14 : Tencent has announced that it is putting more news feed ads inside WeChat to increase monetization.

According to the TechCrunch web site, the company first tested advertising inside Moments, the app's social network like feed where users share photos and links with friends, earlier this year. Now, it is going to expand the program.

James Mitchell, Chief Strategy Officer is quoted as saying on an investor call that they will progressively expand the number and range of advertising formats as they move through the year. Advertisers are very happy with results of the first sequence of ads.

The app is hugely popular in China. Unlike WhatsApp, WeChat has a lot more features than messages and calls between friends.


Seniors with lingering depression double their stroke risk despite treatment

Seniors with lingering depression double their stroke risk despite treatment

Washington, May 14 : A new study has suggested that long-term depression may double the risk of stroke in adults over 50 and stroke risk remains higher even after symptoms of depression go away.

Lead author Paola Gilsanz of Harvard University said that the findings suggest that depression may increase stroke risk over the long term.

The study documented 1,192 strokes over 12 years. Compared to people without depression at either interview and found that people with high depressive symptoms at two consecutive interviews were more than twice as likely to have a first stroke and people who had depressive symptoms at the first interview but not the second had a 66 percent higher stroke risk.


Water was probably `abundant` in first billion yrs of universe

Water was probably `abundant` in first billion yrs of universe

Washington, May 14 - In a new research, scientists have claimed that water could have been plentiful in the early years of universe.

Researchers at the Tel Aviv University and Harvard University have revealed that the universe's first reservoirs of water may have formed much earlier than previously thought - less than a billion years after the Big Bang, when the universe was only 5 percent of its current age.

According to the study, led by PhD student Shmuel Bialy and his advisor Prof. Amiel Sternberg at TAU, the timing of the formation of water in the universe has important implications for the question of when life itself originated.


Kabul guesthouse siege ends with 5 foreigners killed, 6 injured

Kabul guesthouse siege ends with 5 foreigners killed, 6 injured

Washington, May 14 - At least five people were killed and six others injured after gunmen attacked a guesthouse in the Afghan capital, which was hosting a party for foreigners. Authorities said that 54 hostages were rescued after an hours-long siege that ended early Thursday morning.

Kabul police chief General Abdul Rahman Rahimi said the attack began at 8:30 p. m. local time Wednesday when gunmen opened fire at the restaurant of the Park Palace Hotel. While the nationalities of the victims are not known, a U. S. Embassy spokeswoman said an American was among those dead, reported ABC News.

Sporadic gunfire and two explosions were heard around the guesthouse which is located in a central neighborhood of Kabul and is home to United Nations compounds and a foreign-run hospital.


Pak intelligence had no role in tracing Osama: US

Pak intelligence had no role in tracing Osama: US

Washington : The US Wednesday dismissed as untrue reports that a former Pakistani intelligence officer provided information about the hideout of Osama bin Laden to the CIA, saying an unilateral American operation traced and killed the al-Qaeda chief in 2011.

"It was an years of painstaking effort of the American intelligence community and an unilateral operation that traced and killed Osama bin Laden in 2011," White House Press Secretary Josh Earnest told reporters at his daily news conference.

"The reporting is specific that a Pakistani intelligence walk-in revealed Osama bin Laden's location to the United States, and that is not true," Earnest told reporters.


Duet Display now lets iPad be used as a monitor for a Windows PC

Duet Display now lets iPad be used as a monitor for a Windows PC

Washington, May 13 : Duet Display has added a feature that lets the iPad work as a screen for Windows.

According to the Verge, there is no complex setup and it is just plug and play to turn the iPad into a monitor.

The app supports Windows 7 and Windows 8 machines and user connect up to the iPad through the lightning connector. Since the iPad works as a monitor, Windows lets user extend or mirror itself onto the display.

It works the same way as the Mac version and user can even use the touch-screen on the iPad to navigate around Windows and tap to click.

Although, it has the limitation of a 1024 x 768 resolution, as Windows detects the display as a generic plug-and-play monitor. So it is not suitable for viewing HD video.

The Duet can be downloaded for USD 9.99. (ANI)


'Thinning' Antarctic ice shelf attacked from above and below

'Thinning' Antarctic ice shelf attacked from above and below

Washington, May 13 : A new study has revealed that the Larsen C Ice Shelf, whose neighbours Larsen A and B collapsed in 1995 and 2002, is thinning from both its surface and beneath.

For years scientists were unable to determine whether it is warming air temperatures or warmer ocean currents that is causing the Antarctic Peninsula's floating ice shelves to lose volume and become more vulnerable to collapse. This new study takes an important step forward in assessing Antarctica's likely contribution to future sea-level rise.

The research team combined satellite data and eight radar surveys captured during a 15-year period from 1998-2012 and found that Larsen C Ice Shelf lost an average of 4 metres of ice and had lowered by an average of one metre at the surface.


North Korean defector says Jong-un's days in power 'numbered'

North Korean defector says Jong-un's days in power 'numbered'

Washington, May 13 : A North Korean defector has reportedly said that Kim Jong-un's leadership may implode within three years as he takes ruling by fear to a new level.

The defector, who is one of the highest officials to escape the isolated nation in years and who chose to be indentified simply as Park, said that the Supreme Leader's cruelty was shocking those around him, reported the CNN.

He said that while the deceased Kim Jong Il imprisoned his enemies, his son and current North Korean leader Jong-un simply executes them. During the first three years after he assumed power, the leader killed hundreds of the elite. Such cruelty , Park said, was shaking an already weak support base.

He added that the leader doesn't know politics, economy, culture or diplomacy.


Sun-like stars with large starspots can experience superflares

Sun-like stars with large starspots can experience superflares

Washington, May 13 : A team of astronomers has used the High Dispersion Spectrograph on the Subaru Telescope to conduct spectroscopic observations of Sun-like "superflare" stars first observed and cataloged by the Kepler Space Telescope.

The investigations focused on the detailed properties of these stars and confirmed that Sun-like stars with large starspots can experience superflares.

The team, made up of astronomers from Kyoto University, University of Hyogo, the National Astronomical Observatory of Japan (NAOJ), and Nagoya University, targeted a set of solar-type stars emitting very large flares that release total energies 10-10000 times greater than the biggest solar flares.


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