Home Authors Posts by Amandeep Singh

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He spends part of his days wondering how to combine his two loves, technology and science. The rest of his time he spends trying to design killer user interfaces.

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The world’s governments reached a global agreement at the Climate Conference in Paris to cap global warming at 2 degrees Celsius (4 degrees Fahrenheit), but the effort may be up against a big hurdle: mathematics.

As per analysis by scientists at the National Center for Atmospheric Research (NCAR) in Boulder, Colorado, even if countries adhere to the Paris climate agreement hammered out last fall, capping global warming at 2 degrees Celsius (4 degrees Fahrenheit) would likely require net zero greenhouse gas emissions by 2085 and actually negative carbon emissions over the long term. More than 100 participants to the Paris Agreement committed to cut greenhouse gas emissions by 2025 or 2030.

Even if all the countries follow through on their commitments, steeper cuts would be necessary after 2030 and by the end of the century, total emissions would need to become negative, meaning more greenhouse gases would be removed from the air than are emitted into the atmosphere to stay below 2 degrees Celsius..

It means we need to remove 15 gigatons of carbon dioxide equivalent greenhouse gases yearly to stay on track. Presently, Greenhouse gas emissions are about 50 gigatons..

“The emissions targets in the Paris Agreement are an important first step, and it’s known that additional action will be required to meet the goal of limiting warming to 2 degrees,” said NCAR scientist Benjamin Sanderson, lead author of the study. “This paper provides details of what the next steps would need to look like in order to actually hit that target.”

ParisGraph

This graph represents eight possible pathways that society could take to have a two-in-three chance of limiting warming to 2 degrees Celsius. The blue line represents our current emissions trajectory. The red line represents the path that society will be on if countries adhere to the Paris Agreement. The gray lines represent other possibilities, all of which require more stringent emissions cuts in the near term but fewer negative emissions later.

Responsibility for the Future

Even before the Paris agreement was finished, it was clear that the pledged emissions cuts by 2030 would not be sufficient on their own to meet the target of limiting warming to 2 degrees.

“We created a wide range of possible global emissions pathways that would allow us to have a decent shot at limiting warming to two degrees,” Sanderson said. “We found that very small increases in the rate at which we cut greenhouse gases now could lead to very large decreases in the amount of negative emissions we need later.”

Negative emissions in the future will require the massive deployment of technologies that are still hypothetical to draw down greenhouse gases from the atmosphere. To make this world a better place, we would require near-term cuts that are much more aggressive than those proposed in the Paris agreement.

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Wall Gardens

Regardless of whether you have a small garden, a huge garden or no garden at all, there should be no excuse for not growing plants. You can build a big garden feature or a subtler indoor hanging garden or wall; either way, it won’t only provide you with wonderful smells that will be emanating from your little plants, but it’ll also brighten up your home. Here are 5  Creative Ideas for Plant Lovers.

1. Empty Jar Herbs Garden

JarGarden

Image Credit : camillestyles

2. Classy Cactus Pot

A Classy Cactus Pot

Image Credit : notonthehighstreet.com

3. Spiral Garden

Spiral Garden

Image Credit : Fancy.com

4. Plastic Bottles Hanging Garden

Bottle Planter

Image Credit : rosenbaum.com

5. Tea Cup Garden

Tea Cup Garden

Image Credit : acultivatednest.com

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Facing heat from huge popularity of Twitter’s Periscope and Facebook Live, YouTube is throwing its hat into the ring. Better late than never, the company just announced that it is soon going to allow users to broadcast live video from their mobile devices with the touch of a button.

YouTube Live Streaming

YouTube Live Streaming

Faster & Reliable

YouTube’s mobile streaming interface looks similar to Periscope’s, with viewer comments scrolling up the screen over the broadcast, but YouTube says its existing infrastructure gives it an advantage over competitors, with streamers and their viewers able to search live broadcasts just as they can search recorded videos.

Mobile live streaming, baked right into the core

Simplicity is the name of the game when going live with video streaming, and YouTube is taking it very seriously making things quite minimal.  According to YouTube Creator Blog “YouTube mobile live streaming will be baked right into the core YouTube mobile app. You won’t need to open anything else, just hit the big red capture button right there in the corner, take or select a photo to use as a thumbnail, and you can broadcast live to your fans and chat in near real time.”

The app lets you decide whether or not you want a chat feature to be enabled, and you can also elect to notify your subscribers when you go live. YouTube has promised to bring it to general users “soon.” Meanwhile, only a handful of big-name channels will be able to broadcast live from their YouTube apps, including political news show The Young Turks and vlogger Alex Wassabi.

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The Nexus line-up has always been criticized for its average camera quality. And again in yesterday’s announcement from Google, no one was expecting something exciting in this front. Furthermore, users started getting worrisome once Google started talking about the lack of OIS (optical image stabilization) in new flagship.

Nexus-camera-sensor

But Google spent a good deal of time talking about the new camera sensor in the Nexus 6P. Google claims its new phones have such a big camera sensor, that it doesn’t need image stabilization. The large 1.55 (1/2.3”-type sensor) is bigger than the original Nexus 6, and even bigger than the new iPhone 6s Plus, which Apple made a big splash about. Large sensor enables to capture more light even in dark environments, something similar to what we have seen with HTC’s UltraPixel  method and result in an overall excellent image, and top quality video recording.

These reports have now been confirmed by at least one reliable source – camera experts DxOMark. It is a popular website that tests cameras, and breaks everything down into two categories, which are photo and video. Each part of how the camera performs gets a score, and is rounded out for one overall result. You will be surprised to learn that Google’s Nexus 6P scored an 84 on the benchmark, just behind the Galaxy S6, placing it on second position in best camera smartphones ahead of even the iPhone 6 and even the LG G4 and its 16 megapixel camera with OIS.

The all new Nexus 6P is available starting today at the Google Store, starting at $499. Right now Google is accepting pre-orders, and should start shipping before the end of October.

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The complete LG Nexus 5X specs have been leaked out along with feature highlights. Seems like leaked features and specs are intended for use on the 5X’s product page. According to leaked images Nexus 5X will offer a 5.2-inch full HD 1920×1080 display, A 12.3 MP rear camera with dual flash and optical image stabilization, and a 5-megapixel front-facing camera. There’s also a fingerprint sensor on the back of the phone. Seems like fingerprint sensor will become a new norm in future android flagships.

The handset will be powered by a hexa-core Snapdragon 808 processor. It will support 2GB of LPDDR3 RAM which does seem a bit small for a new phone coming out in late 2015, but as Nexus 5X will be a mid range device, it will not disappoint with the performance in its class. It will support 16 & 32 GB memory options and a USB Type-C connector. The Nexus 5X will support a slim profile with only 7.9 mm thickness. Meanwhile, the lack of wireless charging is puzzling since that feature was in the Nexus 4, 5, and 6.

According to multiple news outlets, the Nexus 5X is also said to be priced starting at $380 for the 16GB model, or $100 more for 32GB.

All will fully be revealed tomorrow at 9:00 AM PT/12:00 PM ET.

Update : We have got a hands on video on Nexus 5X Prototype 

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NASA has confirmed for the first time that liquid water, flowing on the surface of Mars, is not just thing of the past, it’s also present on the planet’s surface today.

“This is tremendously exciting,” James L. Green, Director, NASA’s planetary science division

“We haven’t been able to answer the question, ‘Does life exist beyond Earth?’ But following the water is a critical element of that. We now have, I think, great opportunities in the right locations on Mars to thoroughly investigate that.” – James L. Green

NASA is also thinking about sending a spacecraft in the 2020 to one of these regions to directly look for life.

The water we are talking about is in form of hydrated salts, but as per Alferd S. McEwen,  a professor of planetary geology at the University of Arizona “There pretty much has to have been liquid water recently present to produce the hydrated salt.”

By “recently,” Dr. McEwen said he meant “days, something of that order.”

We knew that the large amounts of water is present in form of frozen solid in the polar ice caps. Also there have been hints of liquid water, but none have proved convincing.

In 2011, the photographs from the orbiter  shows dark streaks descending along slopes of mountains. The streaks lengthened during summer, faded in winters, then reappeared the next year.

Scientists suspected that water played a critical role in this behaviour,  similar to the way concrete darkens when wet and returns to its original color when dry. But that was just a guess.

But now, the signs of the salt disappeared when the streaks faded is very definitive that there is some sort of liquid water.

So how does the water remains liquid on Mars?

The salts lower the freezing temperature, and the water remains liquid. The average temperature of Mars is about -70 degrees Fahrenheit, but in summers the temperature at Equator can reach an almost 70 degrees.

The scientists are still not sure about where the liquid water might be coming from on Mars. The current readings of the planet’s atmosphere point to very low humidity near the surface, but there’s also a chance that it might be coming from underground aquifers on the planet, which seep out when things warm up.

What about presence of Life?

Christopher P. McKay, an astrobiologist at NASA’s Ames Research Center in Mountain View, Calif., does not think the recurring slope lineae are a promising place to look. For the water to be liquid, it must be so salty that nothing could live there, he said. “The short answer for habitability is it means nothing,” he said.

He pointed to Don Juan Pond in Antarctica, which remains liquid year round in subzero temperatures because of high concentrations of calcium chloride salt. “You fly over it, and it looks like a beautiful swimming pool,” Dr. McKay said. “But the water has got nothing.”

We’ve known for a while now that Mars currently holds large reserves of frozen water at its poles, and that it had large oceans billions of years ago. But this discovery will have a huge impact on Martian missions in near future.

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Elon Musk is considered as a real-life Tony Stark from Marvel’s Iron Man comics for his role in cutting-edge companies including Space X, a space exploration company that holds the first private contracts from NASA for resupply of the International Space Station, and the electric car company Tesla.

During an interview at the AeroAstro Centennial Symposium, talking about computer science, AI, space exploration and the colonisation of Mars. Elon Musk has spoken out against artificial intelligence (AI), declaring it the most serious threat to the survival of the human race.

“With artificial intelligence we are summoning the demon”

Musk said “I think we should be very careful about artificial intelligence. If I had to guess at what our biggest existential threat is, it’s probably that. So we need to be very careful,” . “I’m increasingly inclined to think that there should be some regulatory oversight, maybe at the national and international level, just to make sure that we don’t do something very foolish.”

“With artificial intelligence we are summoning the demon. In all those stories where there’s the guy with the pentagram and the holy water, it’s like – yeah, he’s sure he can control the demon. Doesn’t work out,” said Musk.

Musk is one of the high-profile investors, alongside Facebook’s Mark Zuckerberg and the actor Ashton Kutcher, in Vicarious, a company aiming to build a computer that can think like a person, with a neural network capable of replicating the part of the brain that controls vision, body movement and language.

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People have tumbled down the steps of the Taj Mahal, fallen off bridges and been electrocuted in an effort to take the perfect selfie.

In fact, Selfies have killed more people than sharks this year. According to media reports, at least 12 people have been killed in selfie-related incidents so far in 2015 and many more injured, while only eight have died as a result of shark attacks.

The latest selfie-related death was of a 66-year-old Japanese tourist, who reportedly suffered a heart attack while posing with a selfie stick at the Taj Mahal in India last week. Other deaths have been caused by distracted photo-takers falling off cliffs, crashing their cars & being hit by trains. In Russia, a teenager shot himself in the head, posing for a selfie, few weeks back. In another incident two men in the Urals were killed while taking a selfie of themselves holding a hand grenade with the pin pulled out.

Some governments have introduced measures to reduce the risk of accident. The selfie craze has proven so dangerous that officials in Australia had to fence off a 16-storey high rock that looks like a wedding cake because people wouldn’t stop taking selfies on it, despite fears of its collapse any time.

“It’s all about me. It’s putting me in the frame. I’m getting attention and when I post that to social media, I’m getting the confirmation that I need from other people that I’m awesome,” lead researcher Jesse Fox told Reuters“You don’t care about the tourist attraction you’re destroying; you don’t care about annoying people in your social media feed … you’re not even thinking about the consequences of your actions, so who cares if you’re dangling off the side of the Eiffel Tower?”

The moral of the story seems to be not only that fatal shark attacks are far less common than you might think, but to think twice before you do something reckless in the hope the photo will win you some approval online.

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We’re at least a one step closer to creating the “Star Trek”-style Teleportation. The concept of Quantum teleportation, the act of reconstructing quantum data somewhere else, is impressive just by itself. A team of  scientists at the US’ National Institute of Standards and Technology have managed to one-up that feat. They’ve shattered the distance record for quantum teleportation.

Sounds like a real time Sci-Fi

The team successfully  managed to transfer the information from one photon to another across 63 miles of optical fiber. That may not sound like much, but it’s a remarkable achievement as 99 percent of photons would never make the complete trip. It was only possible thanks to newer detectors that could pick up the faint signal of the lone light particle.

Real time teleportation, as seen in sci-fi movies, is still a long way to go, but the achievement does open the door to many possibilities in quantum computing. You could use unbreakable quantum encryption at inter-city distances, for instance. Imagine a future with more instantaneous communication with astronauts in space or rovers on Mars alongside unprecedented network speed and security thanks to quantum encryption.

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Taking out the trash is an inherently dirty job, but someone’s gotta do it. If Volvo’s ROAR project has its way, garbage men will be replaced by autonomous, two-wheeled robots.

ROAR (Robot-based Autonomous Refuse handling)

According to Volvo’s press release “Imagine a robot that quietly and discreetly enters your neighbourhood, collects bin and empties it into the refuse truck. It is done without waking the sleeping families and without heavy lifting for the refuse truck’s driver. This is the purpose of ROAR, a joint project with the aim to develop tomorrow’s smart transport solutions.”

This joint project involves Volvo, the Chalmers University of Technology, Mälardalen University in Sweden, Penn State University, and waste recycling company Renova, all with the goal of producing safe, quiet machines that streamline the trash collection process and reduce lifting strains on humans.

“Within Volvo Group we foresee a future with more automation,” says Per-Lage Götvall, Volvo Patent Coordination Manager. “This project provides a way to stretch the imagination and test new concepts to shape transport solutions for tomorrow.”

As far as ROAR goes, a working prototype will be tested in June 2016 on a real garbage truck manufactured by Renova.

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