Video: This Robot Fly is Straight Out of a Spy Novel

May 31, 16 Video: This Robot Fly is Straight Out of a Spy Novel

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A Harvard research team has unveiled an exciting new innovation in robotics technology, which they say will greatly expand the amount of time flying robots can spend in the field. Just as birds, bees, and bats can’t fly indefinitely, neither can drones, so the Harvard researchers went looking for a way for insect-sized robots to cling to surfaces as needed. In a new study published this May in Science, the Harvard Microrobotics Lab and the Harvard School of Engineering and Applied Sciences showed off their new creation. The robo-bee uses static electricity to cling to a wide variety of surfaces. The robot hangs upside down like a bat thanks to an electrostatic landing patch, which evenly distributes the static electric charge. The robo-bee weights about 100 milligrams, only slightly more than an actual bee. There’s just one problem. Microrobots are often so small that they can’t carry a power source, meaning they have to be “tethered” to an electrical source. So while the lab was showing off their new sticky robot, another team was unveiling their “flying moth,” an untethered microrobot. Or, in technical terms, an “insect-scale flapping-wing micro-air vehicle.” It’s an exciting time for the field of robotics, which have recently gone mainstream with the popularity of consumer drones. And while the Harvard Microrobotics Lab tries to make robots smaller, NASA scientists are building robots that could one day roam the surface of Mars. Already, roboticists are designing robots that can handle extreme temperatures and pressures, for underwater, volcanic, or outer space applications. Already, even commonly available robotics components can handle temperatures ranging from negative 450 degrees Fahrenheit to 450 degrees Fahrenheit. In preparation for a future trip to the Red Planet, the NASA Johnson Space Center in Houston has sent some of its prized anthropomorphic Valkyrie robots to labs in Massachusetts and Scotland. Right now, the humanoid robots are robotics center at the University of Massachusetts-Lowell, where professors and students are working hard to expand their capabilities. With a time delay between...

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‘PMS Bites’: Chocolate Medicine For Women During Their Period

Women love chocolate. While this is indeed a cliche, it’s backed up by hard statistics. In fact, 91% of women prefer to eat chocolate, and during “that time” of the month, women stereotypically reach for chocolate — and for good reason, it turns out. According to research, chocolate is rich in magnesium, which actually helps to alleviate cramps and increase energy. It also contains endorphins, which result in an increase of “happy hormones,” adjusting any hormonal imbalances that might be present due to menstruation. Tania Green, CEO and founder of PMS Bites, understood this firsthand, and decided to make a chocolate treat that would not only satisfy the deepest of chocolate cravings, but would medicinally soothe PMS symptoms. Last month, PMS Bites entered the television show “Shark Tank,” presenting the specialty chocolates. The bite-sized beauties are all-natural, vegan, and gluten-free and contain herbs that help to decrease PMS symptoms such as bloating and cramping. So far, Green says that women are rejoicing in the luxury of luscious chocolate that’s made specifically for their time of the month. “I love when women try these, tilt their heads back and say ‘Oh my God! So good!’ It’s like an orgasmic experience for us. Most women suffer from PMS, so when women reach out to tell me that the product brightens their week, satisfies their sweet tooth, and makes them feel better, I feel like I have done my job.” As for the future? Green hopes to expands her product, making them available for purchase in yoga and fitness studios and gyms, as well as major grocery chains like Whole Foods. Next year, the CEO and founder plans to expand her product line, introducing several lines of bites, including Menopause Bites, Insomnia Bites, Hangover Bites, and Diet Bites under her parent company, Everything...

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Newlyweds Divorce Hours After Wedding Ceremony

May 23, 16 Newlyweds Divorce Hours After Wedding Ceremony

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A newlywed couple filed for a newly-divorce hours after they were married. The New York Post reports that a woman spent her entire wedding night staring at her phone, texting, instead of paying attention to her big night. That can be stressful on a date over dinner, but a wedding? That’s gotta hurt. The groom quickly realized that maybe this wasn’t the relationship he had hoped for. He filed for divorce hours after the wedding. “When he asked her if her friends were more important than he was, the bride answered that they were,” a relative told a local newspaper. Maybe that answer would be fine any other day in a lifetime, but on a wedding day? On average, marriages that end in divorce last about nine years. This one is certainly going to bring down that average. After the soon-to-be-ex-bride said that her friends are, in fact, more important than her husband on their special day, the newly-married, future-divorced man stormed out of his hotel room and told his wife he was ending it. Gulf News reports that a court tried to get the couple to work out their first fight as newlyweds and not just jump right into a divorce, but the husband was adamant. He was getting a divorce. “Marriages are bound to fail when there are no robust foundations or trust,” Ahmad Al Maabi, a legal expert, said. “The approach to marriage without a deep appreciation of the responsibilities are among the major causes for divorce among young people.” Perhaps young people should wait a little while longer before they go through with a wedding and vow to spend the rest of their lives together with one person. Maybe have an argument first — that might help. According to MaselliWarren.com, regarding couples who are between the ages of 20 and 25, wholly 60% of those marriages end in...

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Why Do College Students Keep Making False Reports?

May 13, 16 Why Do College Students Keep Making False Reports?

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This May, the University of Albany announced that a Student Conduct Board had expelled two students and suspended another for lying about a hate crime. Three young black women claimed that they were attacked by a group of 12 to 20 people during a midnight bus right. Immediately after stepping off the bus, the women called the police and claimed they were physically attacked by a group of white men shouting racial slurs. The incident caused a national uproar, a police investigation, and a solidarity rally on campus, in which one of the alleged victims tearfully spoke about the painful experience. In reality, the police investigation revealed none of what the women said was true and that they were the aggressors in the fight. The school’s disciplinary action follows misdemeanor criminal charges for assault, attempted assault, and false reporting. “Did it occur to you that you weren’t a woman of one (or three, since Ariel Agudio and Alexis Briggs are part of this, too) crying wolf, but rather your actions, your decisions, your choices will make people — the public, and otherwise — think many who come after you with their own legitimate, fair, honest claims of assault are also lying?” wrote Kristi Barlette in an open letter to one of the women in Albany newspaper The Times Union. Unfortunately, the University of Albany hate crime hoax is just one of many similar incidents that have occurred at colleges across the country. At a time when the college culture wars are obsessed with safe spaces, microaggressions, and trigger warnings, many conservative critics say these incidents are indicative of a culture of victimhood and hair-trigger offense seeking. Of course, college students have always made dumb, alcohol-fueled mistakes. At another college in upstate New York, Syracuse University, students have misused the campus’s Blue Light Alarm System so often that the number of false reports is approaching 10,000. A typical false alarm requires two police officers and 20 minutes to investigate; meanwhile, security experts estimate that 94...

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New Smoking Regulations Affecting Beaches, Parks, and Electronic Smokers

May 13, 16 New Smoking Regulations Affecting Beaches, Parks, and Electronic Smokers

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Just a few days into May, a new bill has been approved that will ban smoking in parks and on beaches in New Jersey. The bill was approved by the state Senate committee and prohibits smoking in any state, county, and local parks and on all of New Jersey’s beaches. Some of these densely packed beaches in New Jersey can draw more than one million people in a single day. However, many of those who are non-smokers do not want to be bothered by second-hand smoke and all the discarded cigarette butts that tend to litter public spaces. “This legislation will not only help us all breathe easier but it will also help to protect parks and beaches from damages and fires caused by careless smokers,” Jeff Tittel, Director of the New Jersey Sierra Club, said. “We believe banning smoking in public parks and beaches is an important step forward for the environment and our health,” Tittel said, who testified for the bill. According to NJ.com, the new bill exempts golf courses, and communities will still be allowed to reserve 15% of their property for a designated smoking section. “That is fair enough, considering we only have 15% (of New Jersey residents) or so who are continuing this unhealthy habit,” state Senator Shirley Turner, who sponsored the new bill, said. Some were pleased that the bill made exceptions to an all-out ban. “I’ve never had a cigarette in my life,” Senator Robert Gordon said. “It’s important to have 15%.” The new bill passed the Senior Citizens Committee, Human Services, and the Senate Health by an 8-0 vote, and now heads to the full Senate for more consideration. According to NJ Spotlight, the new smoking laws aren’t just targeting cigarette smokers but electronic smokers as well. During the second week of May, the U.S. Food and Drug Administration will publish new rules that require electronic cigarettes and other smokeless devices to meet the same federal regulations that govern cigarettes. “At last,” Harold P. Wimmer, National...

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