Athena: a Tiny, Wearable Device That Could Help Prevent Sexual Assault

With depressing statistics revealing sexual assault to occur every 107 seconds in the United States, it’s not unusual to carry some form of protection at all times — whether it’s pepper spray, a stun gun or a cute, cat-shaped keychain meant to gouge out the eyes of an attacker. A problem with these self defense products is having to fumble in a purse or pocket for them during a moment of need. A wearable safety device called Athena may help with this issue.

Athena, designed by a startup called ROAR For Good, is compact in size and only weighs an ounce, so it can be clipped onto a pocket or worn as a necklace. When pressed for three seconds, Athena will emit a loud alarm and send text messages to the wearer’s emergency contacts, alerting them to their location. There’s also a silent feature which allows the alarm to be sent without the attacker knowing it has been activated.

ROAR’s co-founder, Yasmine Mustafa, spent six months on a solo trek across South America, meeting victims of sexual violence. When she returned home to Philadelphia, a woman in her neighborhood was assaulted after going outside to put money in her parking meter. “Our goal is to start a movement where every woman can live their lives boldly and without fear,” Mustafa said in a statement to Jezebel. She says they want to make make existing self defense tools safer, because most women find the existing tools bulky and intimidating. ROAR worked with self-defense instructors and police officers to develop the product.

Athena’s Indiegogo campaign is currently at more than $239,000. Their initial goal of $40,000 was met within the first two days. “At the end of the day, our goal is that devices like these will no longer be needed,” said Mustafa.

Source: Athena: a Tiny, Wearable Device That Could Help Prevent Sexual Assault

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Koenigsegg Regera: The first robotized car looks like a transformer | BGR

As a prime example, feast your eyes upon the Koenigsegg Regera, a limited edition (only 80 models will be built) hybrid supercar that costs approximately $2.34 million and was just unveiled at the Geneva Motor Show earlier this year. Designed by Christian von Koenigsegg, the Koenigsegg Regera can go from 0 to 62 mph in just 2.8 seconds and maxes out 255 mph.

Source: Koenigsegg Regera: The first robotized car looks like a transformer | BGR

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A Funding Battle is Tearing the Arecibo Observatory Apart

After 52 years of groundbreaking science, the renowned Arecibo Observatory in Puerto Rico faces an uncertain future. According to a Nature News report, operations director Robert Kerr has resigned after a bitter dispute with the National Science Foundation over funding cuts.

click below to read more…

Source: A Funding Battle is Tearing the Arecibo Observatory Apart

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World’s Largest Fusion Reactor is About to Switch On 

If “The Stellarator” sounds like an energy source of comic book legend to you, you’re not that far off. It’s the largest nuclear fusion reactor in the world, and it’s set to turn on later this month.

Housed at the Max Planck Institute in Germany, the Wendelstein 7-X (W7-X) stellarator looks more like a psychotic giant’s art project than the future of energy. Especially when you compare it with the reactor’s symmetrical, donut-shaped cousin, the tokamak. But stellarators and tokamaks work according to similar principles: In both cases, coiled superconductors are used to create a powerful magnetic cage, which serves to contain a gas as it’s heated to the ungodly temperatures needed for hydrogen atoms to fuse.

Stellarators are ridiculously hard to build, a fact which should be self-evident after one glance at the W7-X. Its 16 meter-wide ring is bristling with devices and cables of all shapes and sizes, including 250 access ports. The guts of the beast are no less chaotic: Fifty 6-ton magnetic coils, twisted and contorted like clocks in a Dalí. By comparison, the tokamak is an engineer’s dream.

But complexity aside, stellarators have certain qualities that make them better suited for commercial applications. Tokamaks can only be turned on for short bursts, and they’re prone to magnetic disruptions that can destabilize the entire reactor. As Science News explains in a great long-read on fusion, differences in how the magnetic fields are imposed render stellarators immune to these issues.

It took 19 full years to build W7-X. By the end of the month, approval to turn the reactor on is expected to come from Germany’s nuclear regulators. If all goes well and the stellarator is able to hold onto its heat, this crazy device could steer a new course for fusion power. Humanity’s energy future: Solar panels, wind turbines, and 300-ton miniature star cores that look like giant katamari. I kinda like it.

Source: World’s Largest Fusion Reactor is About to Switch On 

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More Nightmare Stories of Your Worst IT Jobs Ever

After we published reader IT job horror stories, we received more than a 1000 comments, and you kicked it up to a whole other level. From finding porn on church systems to working IT in actual warzones, you’ve been to computerized hell and back.

Source: More Nightmare Stories of Your Worst IT Jobs Ever

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Hey Ted Cruz, You’re Holding Your Gun Backwards

Staunch gun rights advocate Ted Cruz is here seen holding a shotgun while being interviewed by CNN. Can you see what he’s doing wrong? That’s right, he’s violating the first two rules of gun safety.

When you learn to shoot, apply for a hunting or carry license and any time you’re at a gun range, there’s four basic rules of gun safety that — and this is impressed on you very strongly — must be observed at all times:

  1. Treat all guns as if they are loaded.
  2. Never point a firearm at something you’re not willing to destroy.
  3. Keep your finger off the trigger until you are ready to shoot.
  4. Be sure of your target and what is beyond it.

Properly observed, these rules are almost entirely capable of preventing accidental shootings. And I can’t emphasize how thoroughly they are drilled into shooters both as they’re learning and as they visit any gun range, gun store or participate in any organized hunt.

Source: Hey Ted Cruz, You’re Holding Your Gun Backwards

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Watch this mega machine erect a bridge

There’s a lot of moving parts when it comes to the construction of a bridge. Like, how do you build a bridge without the help of a bridge? The easiest way? This SLJ900 machine. It moves in coordinated parts to deftly erect a bridge or viaduct, balancing its weight on the beams before laying out the groundwork. It’s really cool to see it slide across and pop out.

Source: Watch this mega machine erect a bridge

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