Boeing’s engineers are breathing a sigh of relief today following the mostly successful launch of the CST-100 Starliner late on Thursday. This is a high water mark for the vessel, which failed a similar test in late 2019. That lead to a cascading series of hardware issues that have delayed its certification in NASA’s Commercial Crew Program. Next stop, the International Space Station (ISS). Starliner is one of two designs chosen by NASA to replace the Space Shuttle. That spacecraft was retired in 2011, and NASA relied on Russian Soyuz launches to reach the ISS for several years after.
(Photo: Brett Jordan/Unsplash)The drama surrounding Elon Musk’s attempt to purchase Twitter has now taken on the form of a reality show. First he just wanted shares in the company, then he wanted the whole company. Then the company didn’t want him to buy it, then it did. Back and forth they went, before they finally came to an agreement. Now that there’s a contract in place, Elon seems to be getting cold feet. To hear Musk say it the deal’s terms don’t apply as the company wasn’t honest with him about the number of bots on the platform. To hear the board say it though, that doesn’t matter; Elon still has to pay up at the original price of the agreement.
Right from the start, Android has allowed users to install software from outside the Google ecosystem. That stands in stark contrast to Apple, which limits people to the App Store. Google has pared back some of these freedoms over the years, adding additional hurdles between users and third-party app installation. In some ways, Google has become downright hostile to the process, and the users of a popular file manager are paying the price. According to the developer behind , Google has forced the removal of APK installation after a series of warnings, . For those who don’t know Total Commander has been around since the 90s, when it was released for Windows.
NASA launched Voyager 1 and 2 in 1977 on a mission to explore the outer solar system. The mission has run much longer than anyone expected, but 45 years is a long time for a piece of hardware exposed to the harsh environment of deep space. Therefore, it’s not a big surprise that NASA is reporting that Voyager 1 . Engineers are investigating, but all science operations are still ongoing, at least for now. Voyager 1 was actually launched a few months after Voyager 2, which leveraged a rare alignment of the outer planets to execute the “Grand Tour,” visiting Jupiter, Saturn, Uranus, and Neptune.
(Photo: Marcelo Leal/Unsplash)Researchers at California’s City of Hope National Medical Center have created a virus that kills cancer cells, and its first human trial is officially underway. The CF33-hNIS virus (referred to as Vaxinia) is an oncolytic virus, a genetically-engineered variety that habitually targets cancer cells while ignoring healthy cells. But beyond infecting and killing cancer cells, Vaxinia works overtime by specially-engineered white blood cells, known as CAR T cells, to solid tumors. While CAR T cells are vital to helping the body’s immune system recognize cancer cells as a threat, solid tumors possess immunosuppressive microenvironments that act as barriers, preventing the CAR T cells from entering and doing their job.
Good morning, fellow space cadets, and welcome to the latest edition of your weekly space news briefing. It’s finally Friday! This week, NASA has been the main mover and shaker. Today, we’ve got NASA mission updates from Voyager and Perseverance, and an updated launch timetable for Artemis. We’ll hear from the ESA’s Great Mission Control Bake-Off. Finally, we’ll leave you with some can’t-miss photos and video of Sunday’s Super Flower Blood Moon lunar eclipse. (Whew. Say that five times fast!) Starliner Takes Off For the International Space Station Yesterday evening, Boeing’s Starliner capsule launched from Canaveral atop an Atlas V rocket.
(Photo: Harpreet Singh/Unsplash)A new type of contact lenses capable of detecting pressure build-up and releasing drug reserves could be used to treat glaucoma. Glaucoma—which is technically a group of ophthalmic conditions—typically occurs in older adults and results in gradual vision loss, with some patients experiencing total blindness. The most common form of the condition is called open-angle glaucoma and begins when the patient’s drain structure (located at the inner corner of the eye) loses its effectiveness. This results in fluid build-up that increases pressure in the eye. The pressure damages the eye’s optic nerve and prevents the nerve from conveying visual messages to the brain.
Most multi-billion dollar business deals are not carried out in public on social media, but that’s how is handling his attempt to acquire Twitter. Weeks after tweeting his way to a , Musk is now casting doubt on the deal (via tweet), saying that he first needs to verify Twitter’s bot count is really as low as it claims. The Twitter saga began last month When Musk , making him the largest single shareholder (for a brief time). He also made his offer to purchase the rest of the company at a premium of $54.20 per share, amounting to $44 billion total.
(Photo: Miguel Tomás /Unsplash)Researchers have proven it’s possible to run malware on an iPhone even after it’s been turned off. Engineers and security experts at Germany’s Technical University of Darmstadt created wireless malware and loaded it onto a Bluetooth chip to test its effect on an iPhone that had been powered off. Executing the Bluetooth chip inflicted the iPhone with the malware, proving the popular smartphone isn’t safe from attack just because it isn’t on. This is possible thanks to what Apple calls “low-power mode,” or LPM, which keeps most of the phone’s wireless chips running even after the device has been powered off.