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Science:

Scientists Watch Atom’s Electrons Moving in Real Time

For the first time ever, scientists at the Max Planck Institute of Quantum Optics in Germany and Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory in Berkeley, Calif. have been able to watch an atom’s electrons move around in the atom’s outer shell. This marks a breakthrough that has the potential to shape and direct our current understanding of chemical processes towards a much better understanding.

The team of scientists were able to time the slight oscillations between the quantum states of valence electrons by using very short flashes of laser light in a process called attosecond absorption spectroscopy. By watching how electrons move, scientists can begin to understand the mechanics of these tiny particles in order to learn how they bond and laws that govern how they bond to make up everything around us. Until now, this has been impossible due to the tremendous speed of electrons.

“With a simple system of krypton atoms, we demonstrated, for the first time, that we can measure transient absorption dynamics with attosecond pulses,” says Stephen Leone of Berkeley Lab’s Chemical Sciences Division, who is also a professor of chemistry and physics at UC Berkeley. “This revealed details of a type of electronic motion – coherent superposition – that can control properties in many systems.”

Bottom line is that this is a huge breakthrough in the study of the properties of the particles that make up everything we see around us. By understanding the mechanics of atoms, we may be able to learn more about the four major forces, and possibly, in time, learn how to bend them.

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Mobile:

New iPhone App Guides Thirsty to Water Fountains

Summer is hot, really hot, especially hot this year it seems as temperatures pass 100 degrees without looking back. What’s the best way to cool off in the heat? Water, of course, but finding a water fountain to hydrate and cool off isn’t exactly easy, well, until now.

Thermos, the insulated beverage bottle manufacturer has just released it’s free application for the iPhone called, “OasisPlaces.” The new app helps users track and add locations of water sources all across the U.S. You can even post pictures and submit ratings, you know, since you’re a water fountain aficionado.

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last update: October 2, 2014

Mobile:

RIM Unveils New BlackBerry to Rival iPhone

Research In Motion unveiled a new BlackBerry aimed at wooing consumers away from Apple’s iPhone and other rivals, but analysts said the handset won’t blow away the competition.

Even though the main features of the BlackBerry Torch, including a touchscreen and slideout keyboard, were well-known within the industry, investors registered their disappointment, driving RIM’s Toronto-listed shares down 4 percent.

The Torch will go on sale in the United States on August 12 for $199.99 with a two-year contract — about the same price as an iPhone. The new BlackBerry uses a revamped operating system and has a faster and easier-to-use Web browser.

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Social:

Virgin America Teams With Twitter For Charity

Today, Twitter and Virgin America are teaming up to raise funds for educational causes. The 24-hour “Fly Forward, Give Back” event encourages flyers to book a flight and tweet it. For the next 24 hours, Virgin America will donate five dollars per booking to education-focused charities and nonprofits.

So, if you’ve got a flight to book, do it today and get your donate on. Here’s a list of available flights:

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Science:

Study Shows Women Attracted to Men in Red

What could be as alluring as a lady in red? A gentleman in red, finds a multicultural study published Aug. 2 in the Journal of Experimental Psychology: General.

Simply wearing the color red or being bordered by the rosy hue makes a man more attractive and sexually desirable to women, according to a series of studies by researchers at the University of Rochester and other institutions. And women are unaware of this arousing effect.

For another way to attract women, or at least grab some attention, you’ll need a  Game Pad.

The cherry color’s charm ultimately lies in its ability to make men appear more powerful, says lead author Andrew Elliot, professor of psychology at the University of Rochester. “We found that women view men in red as higher in status, more likely to make money and more likely to climb the social ladder. And it’s this high-status judgment that leads to the attraction,” Elliot says.

Why does red signal rank? The authors see both culture and biology at work. In human societies across the globe, red traditionally has been part of the regalia of the rich and powerful. Ancient China, Japan and sub-Saharan Africa all used the vibrant tint to convey prosperity and elevated status, and Ancient Rome’s most powerful citizens were literally called “the ones who wear red.” Even today, the authors note, businessmen wear a red tie to indicate confidence, and celebrities and dignitaries are feted by “rolling out the red carpet.”

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Gadgets:

Game Pad Turns Your iPhone into Game Controller

Gaming is HUGE on the iPhone, and what better way to enhance your game play than turning your iPhone into a full on game controller. Well, with the iPhone Game Pad you can do just that. The Game Pad slides over the iPhone and lets you play your favorite arcade style games. Right now, it’s only a prototype for the first generation iPhones, but in time, Game Pad could change the way we game on smart devices.

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Gadgets:

Apple Gets in the Battery Game

Apple’s got a new product, again, but this time it’s not a computer, digital music device, or tablet, it’s… a battery charger. Yup, Apple just got into the battery game. Their new battery charger comes with 6 AA nickel-metal hydride (NiMH) rechargeable batteries.

Apple has also brought these products to market with the environment in mind. The new battery charger not only keeps you from buying and throwing away tons of toxin spewing batteries, but it also cuts off power after the batteries come to a full charge. Clever.

The charger comes with a removable AC plug so you can swap it out for other types of plugs if necessary. You can also use any AA NiMH rechargeable battery, not just the ones that come from Apple. You may never buy another battery again, or at least for the next decade, as Apple says their batteries last for 10 years and for hundreds of charges.




Science:

Brown Dwarf Found Orbiting Young Sun-like Star

A new discovery sheds light on the early stages of solar system formation as astronomers image a young brown dwarf in a close orbit with a nearby sun-like star. A team of astronomers and graduate students made the rare discovery using the NICI (Near-Infrared Coronagraphic Imager) and the 8-meter Gemini-South Telescope in Chile.

The distance between the sun-like star and its brown dwarf companion is what makes this discovery exciting. The 36 Jupiter-mass brown dwarf (PZ Tel B) and the sun-like star (PZ Tel A) are only 18 AUs (Astronomical Units) apart, similar to the distance between our sun and the planet Uranus.

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