How Ebola works


The MicrobeWiki has a really detailed explanation of the biological mechanisms behind an Ebola infection. It gets a little technical in places, but it's a good read if you've ever wondered how the virus creates hemorrhaging and why it's hard to treat.

One of the reasons that Ebola is so deadly is that it has multiple ways of interfering with or avoiding the human immune system. While the virus is busy destroying the human body, the immune system is either still in the process of discovering that there is a problem, or is in such disarray that it would be next to impossible to mobilize a unified effort to fight off the invader.

Humans are eating a scaly anteater into extinction


Never underestimate omnivores with a penchant for animal-based traditional medicine.

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Read Dune with public radio's Science Friday

If you liked learning about the science of Tatooine, you'll enjoy reading Dune with the Science Friday bookclub.

The Art of Fred Gambino: Dark Shepherd

Fred Gambino has worked as a diverse illustrator and artist, providing sci-fi book covers for publishing houses and high-profile concept art for a wide array of television programs, films and video games.

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A starry night sky, from the Boing Boing Flickr Pool


"All in a Row," a lovely night shot by Diablo_119 of Tacoma, WA, shared in the Boing Boing Flickr Pool.

Inquiry reveals two decades of errors in FBI forensic lab

Reuters / Mike Brown

Reuters / Mike Brown

"Nearly every criminal case reviewed by the FBI and the Justice Department as part of a massive investigation started in 2012 of problems at the FBI lab has included flawed forensic testimony from the agency," reports the Washington Post.

U.S. officials began the inquiry after The Washington Post reported two years ago that flawed forensic evidence involving microscopic hair matches might have led to the convictions of hundreds of potentially innocent people. Most of those defendants never were told of the problems in their cases.

The inquiry includes 2,600 convictions and 45 death-row cases from the 1980s and 1990s in which the FBI’s hair and fiber unit reported a match to a crime-scene sample before DNA testing of hair became common. The FBI had reviewed about 160 cases before it stopped, officials said.

More: "Federal review stalled after finding forensic errors by FBI lab unit spanned two decades"

Apple to fire about 200 workers at Beats

Photo: Reuters

Photo: Reuters

"Apple will fire about 200 workers at Beats Electronics LLC following its $3 billion acquisition of the headphone and music company," reports Bloomberg, citing an anonymous source. "The jobs to be cut are in human resources, finance and other roles where there’s overlap between the two companies."

San Jose, CA approves drone purchase by police with no public input

From the ACLU of Northern California: "The San Jose City Council has approved a police request to acquire a drone – without public debate – illustrating the surreptitious way in which local law enforcement agencies have obtained sophisticated surveillance technology since 9/11."

White House 'accidentally emailed' torture report talking points to AP reporter

 U.S. President George W. Bush and Secretary of State Colin Powell applaud at the North Atlantic Council Summit in Prague November 21, 2002.   Between them is Secretary of State Condoleezza Rice, to their right, Defense Secretary Donald Rumsfeld. [REUTERS/Kevin Lamarque]

U.S. President George W. Bush and Secretary of State Colin Powell applaud at the North Atlantic Council Summit in Prague November 21, 2002. Between them is Secretary of State Condoleezza Rice, to their right, Defense Secretary Donald Rumsfeld. [REUTERS/Kevin Lamarque]

A White House staff member 'accidentally emailed' non-classified talking points about a classified torture report to an Associated Press reporter.

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Mimi Pond: "MAD was our communist manifesto"

This episode of Gweek is brought to you by Bombfell, the glorious clothing service for men that sends handpicked outfits to your door. Go to to get $10 off your first purchase. And by — get a $110 sign-up bonus with the offer code GWEEK!

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Camel's milk: Can it get over the hump and become the next big superfood?


"Make every day a humpday," reads the logo on Desert Farms camel's milk bottles.

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US Army developing 'pocket-sized' video surveillance drone


The US Army has developed a "pocket-sized aerial surveillance device" for combat troops operating in "challenging ground environments."

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Turkish deputy prime minister tells a joke that has women howling with laughter

Turkish Deputy Prime Minister Bulent Arinc. [Reuters]

Turkish Deputy Prime Minister Bulent Arinc. [Reuters]

Bülent Arinç, deputy prime minister of Turkey, told a good joke on Monday.

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Cool Tools Show 007: Lloyd Kahn, Editor-in-Chief of Shelter Publications

On the latest episode of the Ask Cool Tools Show, Kevin Kelly and I interviewed Lloyd Kahn, editor-in-chief of Shelter Publications. He shared with us many useful tips, ranging from how to get the most out of your camera lenses, to alternative activities for the senior surfer.

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iOS app Signal promises free, 'strongly encrypted' mobile voice calls



The open source software group Open Whisper Systems has announced the release of Signal, "the first iOS app designed to enable easy, strongly encrypted voice calls for free."

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