Stupid people tend to overestimate their competence, while smart people tend to sell themselves short. As Shakespeare put it in As You Like It: “The fool doth think he is wise, but the wise man knows himself to be a fool.”   That conventional wisdom is backed up by a Cornell University study conducted by social psychologists
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Humanity just made a weighty decision. On Friday, representatives of more than 60 nations, gathered in Versailles, France, approved a new definition for the kilogram. Since the 19th century, scientists have based their definition of the fundamental unit of mass on a physical object — a shining platinum iridium cylinder stored in a locked vault
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The architectural design behind Japan’s new space research center is mind-boggling. The futuristic building will incorporate elements of spacecraft design, which emphasize light weight and high functionality.   The whole thing will be suspended over a man-made, Moon-like crater. The building will be a robotics research center that’s part of the Avatar X space research campus
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Every now and then, Earth’s protective magnetic cage changes its stripes, sending explosive showers of charged particles spilling into the atmosphere. NASA’s quartet of orbiting Magnetospheric Multiscale (MMS) satellites has finally recorded one in high detail on the planet’s night side, providing vital information on a phenomenon that stirs the winds of space throughout the
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For a brief moment earlier this year, a small spot in China blazed with such heat, the Sun would have been staring down at Earth feeling mightily jealous. Scientists announced this week that the Experimental Advanced Superconducting Tokamak (EAST) reactor in Hefei has finally achieved a temperature exceeding 100 million degrees Celsius, setting a new
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Scientists behind a major study that claimed the Earth’s oceans are warming faster than previously thought now say their work contained inadvertent errors that made their conclusions seem more certain than they actually are.   Two weeks after the high-profile study was published in the journal Nature, its authors have submitted corrections to the publication.
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China has halted a directive that partially legalized the domestic trade in farmed rhinoceros and tiger parts, two weeks after the move drew a torrent of criticism from conservation groups.   A senior official in China’s cabinet said in a state media interview published Monday that implementation of an October directive reviving the market for
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The image you see above is something theoretical physicists have described as groundbreaking: a type of fractal called a Sierpinski triangle, created out of electrons on the quantum scale. It’s unbelievably small – and it could reveal new and strange things about electrons.   Electrons are a fundamental subatomic particle found in all atoms. They
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Humans have a hard-wired habit of seeing patterns, shapes, and faces in all kinds of objects. For some these phenomena are conspiracy fuel, but it’s really just our brains trying to make sense of the world.   Case in point, the Mars Warrior Women, the Mars Face, or any half decent optical illusion. This time, however, we’ve gone a
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Over 100 captured whales are being held in small, crowded enclosures in a so-called ‘whale jail’ off the coast of Russia, where they await suspected sale to Chinese theme parks, according to local media reports.   The discovery of the marine containment facility near the city of Nakhodka in Russia’s south-east is being investigated by
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Comic-book creator Stan Lee has died, aged 95. The visionary behind huge swathes of the Marvel Universe and the much-loved superheroes that came with it – Spiderman, Black Panther, The Hulk, Black Widow, and the engineering genius Tony Stark just to name a few – has inspired generations of people with his imagination.    His
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Since Thursday, at least 31 people have died from three wildfires burning in California. The Camp Fire charred the entire town of Paradise in northern California. As of Sunday evening, the blaze covered 110,000 acres and was 25 percent contained. Officials have declared it the most destructive wildfire in California history based on the loss
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The evolutionary arms race between predator and prey has given rise to many impressive defence mechanisms; as it turns out, the lowly moth is no exception. These unassuming creatures may not have the charming appearance of their butterfly cousins, but their furry facade conceals some tricks that would impress the most advanced military division.  
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Researchers at Yale University have developed a seriously confusing optical illusion that is proving our human nature has some bizarre quirks. As part of the Neural Correlate Society’s annual optical illusions contest, the Yale researchers developed what they call the “Who’s Chasing Whom?” illusion.   Take a look at the video the team developed. What
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On Friday, Apple announced that two of its products – the iPhone X and the 13-inch MacBook Pro (non Touch Bar) – have known hardware issues. Bloomberg first reported on these issues after being posted on Apple’s support pages on Friday.   Apple said that on some iPhone X devices, display screens are experiencing touch issues. Those issues include:
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Poachers that kill or maim elephants for their ivory tusks have decimated world elephant populations. According to new research, that activity has placed such a strain on elephant populations in Mozambique that it’s forcing the hand of evolution. Historically, only 2 to 4 percent of female African elephants were naturally tuskless — and now nearly
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