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Engineering
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May 25, 2018

SAVING THE RAINFOREST WITH OLD CELL PHONES

After a visit to the rainforests of Borneo, physicist and engineer Topher White was struck by the sounds of the forest. In particular, the noises he couldn’t hear.

While on a walk, White and others came across an illegal logger sawing down a tree just a few hundred meters away from a ranger station.

This incident set White thinking that perhaps the best way to save the Earth’s precious rainforest is to listen to its loggers and poachers. The innovation he came up with, Rainforest Connection, uses old cell phones to help to save the planet in a big way.

Source: https://everwideningcircles.com/2016/04/04/saving-the-rainforest-with-old-cellphones/

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March 16, 2018

ENERGY DEPT NEEDS R1 TRILLION FOR NUCLEAR PLANS

Finance Minister Nhlanhla Nene confirmed that nuclear plans will remain on the table but will only be implemented at a pace the country can afford.

Finance Minister Nhlanhla Nene says the Energy Department will need a budget of R1 trillion for its nuclear plans.

Nene confirmed that nuclear plans will remain on the table but will only be implemented at a pace the country can afford.

The Finance Minister gave his first public address in Tshwane on Monday at a Fedusa conference.

“Which means we must not move away from the existing plans and we’re sitting with the IPPs as we speak on renewable energy, some of them that are due to be signed quite soon, some of [...]

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March 16, 2018

‘Quantum supremacy will soon be ours!’, says Google as it reveals 72-qubit quantum chip

Don’t panic: ‘supremacy’ is the point at which quantum kit trumps classical computers

Google scientist Marissa Giustina installs a Bristlestone chip

Google reckons it’s on the cusp of demonstrating “quantum supremacy” with the development of a 72-qubit processor.

Quantum supremacy refers to the point at which a quantum computer should outperform a classical computer, without incurring the performance costs of error correction (as described in this 2016 paper).

Google demonstrated a nine-qubit design in 2014 (published in Nature in 2015), and Julian Kelly, a research scientist at the company’s Quantum AI Lab explained that the [...]

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March 13, 2018

Bringing 4G to the moon

Nokia, Vodafone and other partners look to deploy 4G to support data transmissions from lunar rovers.

“That’s one small step for man, one giant leap for mankind. Now come over here, Buzz. I want to get a selfie of this up on Insta; my ex-girlfriend’ll freak.” That’s not something astronaut Neil Armstrong ever said, but, if Nokia, Vodafone and partners work to realize the goal of establishing a 4G network on the moon, perhaps future generations of astronauts will be able to live tweet their lunar experiences.

The plan here is set up a 4G network on the moon that will use Nokia equipment to connect Audi lunar rovers with the network needed to transmit scientific data and [...]

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