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NASA’s 1st Moon Crew In 50 Years Includes 1 Woman, 3 Men

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NASA

NASA on Monday named the four astronauts who will fly to the moon by the end of next year, including one woman and three men.

The three Americans and one Canadian were introduced during a ceremony in Houston, home to the nation’s astronauts and Mission Control.

“This is humanity’s crew,” said NASA Administrator Bill Nelson.

The four astronauts will be the first to fly NASA’s Orion capsule, launching atop a Space Launch System rocket from Kennedy Space Center no earlier than late 2024. They will not land or even go into lunar orbit but rather fly around the moon and head straight back to Earth, a prelude to a lunar landing by two others a year later.

Victor Glover, an African American naval aviator, Christina Koch, who holds the world record for the longest space flight by a woman; and Jeremy Hansen from Canada will work alongside mission commander Reid Wiseman. All are space veterans except Hansen.

nasa

They select crew for fly-by moon mission

“This is a big day. We have a lot to celebrate, and it’s so much more than the four names that have been announced,” said Glover.

This is the first moon crew to include a woman and someone not from the U.S. — and the first crew in NASA’s new moon program, named Artemis. Late last year, an empty Orion capsule flew to the moon and back in a long-awaited dress rehearsal.

Apollo, NASA sent 24 astronauts to the moon from 1968 through 1972. Twelve of them landed. All were military-trained test pilots except for Apollo 17′s Harrison Schmitt, a geologist who closed out that moon landing era alongside the late Gene Cernan.

Provided this next 10-day moonshot goes well, NASA aims to land two astronauts on the moon by 2025.

NASA picked from 41 active astronauts for its first Artemis crew. Canada had four candidates.

SOURCE – (AP)

Business

AI Chip Firm Nvidia Valued At $2tn

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nvidia

Nvidia’s market value has reached $2 trillion (£1.58 trillion), marking a new milestone in the chipmaker’s meteoric rise to the ranks of the world’s most valuable corporations.

Shares of the Silicon Valley corporation gained more than 4% in opening trading on Friday before falling slightly.

The gains built on the company’s impressive earnings announcement earlier this week.

nvidia

AI Chip Firm Nvidia Valued At $2tn

The company is profiting from improvements in artificial intelligence (AI), which has boosted demand for its processors.

The company’s turnover doubled last year to more than $60 billion, and CEO Jensen Huang told investors this week that demand was “surging” worldwide.

The corporation, which became worth $1 trillion less than a year ago, is now the world’s fourth most valuable publicly traded company, trailing Microsoft, Apple, and Saudi Aramco.

nvidia

AI Chip Firm Nvidia Valued At $2tn

After shares fell from their early Friday highs, the company’s market capitalization ended the day just under $2 trillion.

Nvidia was founded in 1993 and was originally recognized for producing computer processors that processed images, primarily for computer games.

Long before the AI revolution, it began adding capabilities to its chips that it claims to aid in machine learning, which has helped it acquire market dominance.

It is currently regarded as a vital company to monitor how quickly AI-powered technology spreads throughout the commercial world.

The firm’s stock price has more than tripled the previous year, from less than $240 per share to about $800 in midday trading on Friday.

On Thursday, the day after its earnings release, purchasers snapped up shares, boosting its value by $277 billion, the greatest one-day rise in Wall Street history.

He research has also contributed to a larger market rise, appearing to persuade investors that, as Derren Nathan of Hargreaves Lansdown put it, the AI boom is “living up to the hype”.

nvidia

AI Chip Firm Nvidia Valued At $2tn

“It’s being used in automotive for design, in telecommunications for network planning, and in mainstream companies to figure out and get insights into data that they haven’t been able to get before,” Bob
O’Donnell, a technology analyst based in the United States, told the BBC earlier this week.

“This is now really starting to hit the kinds of companies across the board, not just specialized tech companies and that’s a real tipping point for the industry.”

SOURCE – (BBC)

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The Tesla Cybertruck Is Impressive And Worrying

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cybertruck

There was a time when an electric Tesla truck, built to compete with America’s most popular goods, the Ford F-150 and Chevrolet Silverado, appeared to be the perfect way to propel Tesla into the mainstream.

Then, in 2019, Elon Musk revealed the Tesla Cybertruck, a bare metal box with wheels. It is the furthest thing from the mainstream. This truck has ardent fans and much more ardent detractors. However, it has good towing and hauling capabilities despite its edgy design limiting its usability. For some clients, the sacrifice is unquestionably worthwhile.

However, it is possible that Ford and GM are overly concerned.

If it’s a popularity contest, they win. Even after I put a rented Tesla Cybertruck next to a hot-pink McLaren supercar in a shopping centre parking lot in California, the McLaren drivers couldn’t stop chatting about the Cybertruck. The large, bright silver truck drew a crowd everywhere I went, attracting both young people waiting to see one in person and others, usually older, who had no idea what it was.

cybertruck

The Tesla Cybertruck Is Impressive And Worrying

The Tesla Cybertruck resembles nothing else on the road. Its size, which is not quite as long as a Ford F-150 but appears even larger, is also striking. Of course, once the Cybertruck has been on the market for a time, its appeal will fade.

There’s much to enjoy about the Cybertruck, but it also represents a terrible amount of personal arrogance in cold, unforgiving steel. Elon Musk, the CEO of Tesla, has prioritized design and technical goals over customer needs and concerns for other drivers’ safety. As Walter Isaacson’s latest biography of Musk explains, Musk’s obsession with this structure, built from the same steel SpaceX uses for rockets, resulted in the rectilinear mass of naked metal that I was driving through the southern California hills.

It was the most enjoyable electric truck I’d ever driven. I’ve driven practically all of the other electric trucks on the market, including Fords and Rivian, and I don’t anticipate any of them outperforming Cybertruck’s sports-car-like performance. Normally, it is not a priority in a pickup. It has exceptional acceleration and steering that feels quick, sensitive, and agile. Its powerful acceleration, fast steering, and custom-designed Goodyear truck tyres reminded me of driving the Lamborghini Huracán Sterrato, a high-performance sports vehicle outfitted with off-road tyres and higher suspension. However, the Cybertruck is significantly larger and heavier.

Even a light tap on the accelerator swiftly pushed everyone else behind. With its drive-by-wire steering system, a tiny turn of its small, rectangular steering wheel produced tight bends at lower speeds, but it was easy to keep the truck in its lane at greater speeds. With four-wheel steering, it can turn around in a smaller area than one may imagine.

Tesla did not provide CNN with a Cybertruck for testing. Instead, we rented one for more than $1,000 daily from Turo, a-to-peer vehicle rental service. (Turo does not determine the rates; vehicle owners do, and Cybertruck charges have decreased slightly since then.) My Turo host guided me through the Cybertruck’s several unusual controls – by non-Tesla standards.

Instead of a stalk, steering wheel buttons control the turn signals. (Again, this is comparable to a Lamborghini or Ferrari.) I swiped up and down on a truck icon on the centre screen to shift the truck into drive or reverse. (If the screen ever goes blank, there is a row of gear selector buttons on the ceiling, right over the windscreen.) And I had to hunt around on the touchscreen to find the control for the Cybertruck’s single massive windscreen wiper. Everything made sense after driving the vehicle for an hour.

So, what’s with the rearview mirror?
It features a rearview mirror on the windscreen, but it is largely ineffective. With the bed cover closed, nothing is visible from the back window.

Many current SUVs include rearview mirrors that double as video screens, displaying a view from a camera installed in the rear. Tesla could have employed a comparable technology but didn’t. The Cybertruck’s back video view is presented in a small rectangle on the truck’s centre screen. It’s always there while you’re driving.

cybertruck

The Tesla Cybertruck Is Impressive And Worrying

This seemingly trivial element reveals Tesla’s approach to car controls. The only justification for having the rearview video display within the rearview mirror is that this is where drivers are accustomed to viewing. Similarly, the only purpose for a turn signal stalk is because it is what people expect. For better or worse, Tesla is okay with what you’re used to.

There are indicators that this mentality contributes to greater crash rates, yet if Tesla were designing a vehicle from the start, the unusual choices would be entirely understandable.

Then there’s the Cybertruck’s unusual shape. Other firms have been producing pickup trucks for well over a century, and there are reasons why they are rarely shaped like wedges. In this case, the Cybertruck’s obvious and unnecessary desire to stand out is a hindrance.

Not suitable for freight.
If you load the cargo bed in the Cybertruck and decide you want to reach anything in the front or back window, you’ll need to begin unpacking. It is not accessible by reaching over the side of the bed. The side wall is too high.

Unlike other large trucks, the Cybertruck has nowhere to put your foot to help you reach over the cargo bed’s edge to save the back tyre, which may be sticky with mud and filth. There isn’t even much room to stand on the rear bumper.

The “frunk,” or front trunk, is a rather ineffective afterthought compared to the one on the Ford F-150 Lightning. Ford’s is just larger and has plenty of power outlets, making it a truly useful office. The Cybertruck is useful as a place to sit. However, there is a reasonably sized storage bin.

For now, the Cybertruck is also more expensive than the Lightning. The Foundation Series truck that I drove cost more than $100,000. It will be next year before Tesla says it will begin building trucks for under $60,000.

Most problematic, however, is the manufacturing quality. The cabin is relatively good, although spartan, but that’s the easy part, especially because Tesla eliminates most switches. The difficult element is creating a body from stainless steel, particularly one with relatively straight edges that do not conceal misalignments.

Body panel alignments are primarily cosmetic in most automobiles and trucks. Having large, irregular gaps between different body portions does not look nice. However, most automobiles are not composed of thick, hard-edged stainless steel. Our Cybertruck’s front corners had openings large enough to see daylight through and hard edges protruding from the body.

cybertruck

The Tesla Cybertruck Is Impressive And Worrying

I was concerned that if this vehicle collided with a pedestrian or if someone slid while climbing over the bedside, the unforgiving metal might inflict serious injury. It’s not knife-edged, but it appears to rip through the skin when it hits soft flesh with enough force. I emailed Tesla to see if they had any issues, but I am still awaiting a response. Tesla has been waiting to respond to CNN’s questions for years.

This is not a truck that customers will buy in large numbers, and it’s not simply because Tesla still needs to produce them. It’s entertaining and engaging, but there’s little need to acquire this instead of something more ordinary and useful for those who want to get the job done. It doesn’t do much better – or at least anything significant – than a Ford F-150 Lightning or a Chevrolet Silverado EV, and it will undoubtedly be worse in several critical respects.

If you want to attract a crowd, this is your ride. At least as long as the novelty lasts.

SOURCE – (CNN)

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Electronics

Elon Musk Says Neuralink Implanted Wireless Brain Chip

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neuralink

A tech tycoon, Elon Musk, has claimed that his Neuralink company has successfully implanted one of its wireless brain chips in a human.

In a post on X, formerly Twitter, he stated that “promising” brain activity had been observed following the treatment and that the patient was “recovering well”.

The company aims to connect human brains to computers to better treat complex neurological diseases.

A handful of competitor companies have already implanted similar devices.

neuralink

Elon Musk Says Neuralink Implanted Wireless Brain Chip

“For any company producing medical devices, the first test in humans is a significant milestone,” said Professor Anne Vanhoestenberghe of King’s College London.

“For the brain computer interface community, we must place this news in the context that whilst there are many companies working on exciting products, there are only a few other companies who have implanted their devices in humans, so Neuralink has joined a rather small group.”

However, she cautioned that “true success” could only be measured over time.

“We know Elon Musk is very adept at generating publicity for his company,” she said.

Other firms that have made similar achievements in the sector include Switzerland’s École Polytechnique Fédérale in Lausanne (EPFL), which has enabled a paralysed man to walk simply by thinking.

Electrical implants in his brain and spine that wirelessly transfer thoughts to his legs and feet allowed for this.

neuralink

Elon Musk Says Neuralink Implanted Wireless Brain Chip

The breakthrough was reported in the peer-reviewed journal Nature in May 2023.

There has been no independent verification of Mr Musk’s assertions, and Neuralink has not disclosed any details about the technique he claims occurred.

BBC News has contacted Neuralink and the US Food and Drug Administration (FDA) for comment.

Neuralink testing has been condemned, with Reuters reporting in December 2022 that the corporation killed almost 1,500 animals, including sheep, monkeys, and pigs.

In July 2023, the chairman of the US Department of Agriculture, which examines animal welfare allegations, stated that there had been no violations of animal research guidelines at the corporation.

However, the agency is currently conducting a separate probe.

The FDA allowed Mr Musk’s business to test the chip on humans in May 2023.

That cleared the way for the six-year project, in which a robot will surgically implant 64 flexible threads, thinner than a human hair, into a portion of the brain that governs “movement intention,” according to Neuralink.

neuralink
Elon Musk Says Neuralink Implanted Wireless Brain Chip

According to the company, these threads enable their experimental implant, which runs on a wirelessly rechargeable battery, to record and transmit brain impulses to an app that decodes how the person wishes to move.

“[It] has great potential to help people with neurological disorders in the future and is an excellent example of how fundamental neuroscience research is being harnessed for medical advances,” Professor Tara Spires-Jones, president of the British Neuroscience Association, stated.

“However, most of these interfaces require invasive neurosurgery and are still in experimental stages; thus, it will likely be many years before they are commonly available.”

In another post on X, Mr Musk stated that Neuralink’s initial product will be Telepathy.

He claimed Telepathy would allow “control of your phone or computer, and through them almost any device, just by thinking”.

“Initial users will be those who have lost the use of their limbs,” he said.

Referring to the late British scientist who suffered from motor neurone illness, he remarked, “Imagine if Stephen Hawking could communicate faster than a speed typist or auctioneer.” “That is the goal.”

While Mr Musk’s involvement enhances the visibility of Neuralink, several of his competitors have a history extending back two decades. In 2004, Utah-based Blackrock Neurotech implanted the first of many brain-computer connections.

Precision Neuroscience, founded by a Neuralink co-founder, likewise seeks to assist patients with paralysis. Its implant resembles a very thin piece of tape that rests on the surface of the brain and can be inserted through a “cranial micro-slit,” which it claims is a much simpler procedure.

Existing equipment also produced findings. In two independent recent US research investigations, implants were used to record brain activity while a person attempted to talk, which could subsequently be decoded to aid communication.

SOURCE – (BCC)

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