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Matt’s Favorites: A Look At The Solar Impulse, Screaming Volcanoes, Algae Biofuel Study Broke, And Much More

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Solar Impulse
mattroush Matt Roush
Matt Roush joined WWJ Newsradio 950 in September 2001 to spearhead the...
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SOUTHFIELD (WWJ) – So what’s the latest and greatest from the wonderful world of high tech? Stick around, kids — let’s take a look!

* Here’s a look at the Solar Impulse, the sun-powered plane that made history by becoming the first aircraft to fly across America day and night without fuel. The Impulse finished its two-month journey from NASA’s Moffett Field in Mountain View, Calif. to JFK airport on July 6, where it is currently parked.

* As Alaska’s Redoubt volcano grew closer and closer to erupting in 2009, the earth seemed to start screaming. Scientists were intrigued — this was unusual, even for the myriad noises typical of a volcanic eruption. Four years later, two studies attempt to explain the noises.

* Meanwhile, Ecuador’s Tungurahua volcano erupted Sunday, sending a large plume of gas, stones and ash nearly 45,000 feet into the sky. The plume was visible more than 90 miles northeast, in Ecuador’s capital city of Quito.

* And here’s a look at some promising research into algae biofuel — that is, of course, being shut down for lack of funding.

* The world’s oldest calendar has been discovered in a field in Scotland, a group of British archeologists believe. The twelve excavated pits in an Aberdeen field seem to mimic phases of the moon to track months over a year.

* Speaking of early civilization, Europe’s first farmers helped spread a revolutionary way of living across the continent. They also spread something else. A new study reveals that these early agriculturalists were fertilizing their crops with manure 8000 years ago, thousands of years earlier than previously thought.

* Well, wouldn’t this be a handy ability: In the July issue of The Journal of Experimental Biology, researchers from Tufts University studied memory regeneration in a small, yellow flatworm known as a planarian. The results show that when a planarian’s head is decapitated, it can grow it back — along with the memories inside — within two weeks.

* Apple and Samsung’s relationship is apparently not so strained as to prevent the South Korean electronics giant from providing the chips that will power future iPhones, a recent report claimed.

* The White House and eight major tech companies unveil best practices for online ad networks aimed at cutting off revenue to Web sites “selling counterfeit goods or engaging in copyright piracy.”

* We’ve seen dresses that tweet before, but never one as political as this one that displays messages on gender equality, racism, and overpriced rents. Creative agency Deportivo developed the Internet-connected Twitter Dress as a way to help Sweden’s youth be heard at Almedalen Week, an annual political summit that draws thousands of politicians, lobbyists, celebrities, and PR folk to the Swedish island of Gotland.

* Take a scroll through the amazing images that came out on top in this year’s David Malin Awards, a prestigious Australian contest honoring excellence in astrophotography.

* FYI, here’s the latest Apple iPhone 5 rumor roundup.

* And here’s a look at the broader context of a California nuclear power plant shutdown.

* Since one of my all time favorite holiday movies, Scrooged!, has a funny running bit on television for cats, I had to throw in this fun little piece on TV for dogs.

* Samsung has upped the ante in smartphone screen size to 6.3 inches.

* Widely deployed in Iraq and promoted by military leaders, BusinessWeek reports the ADE 651 bomb-detecting device had one little problem: it wouldn’t detect explosives.

* Only 10 percent of internet entrepreneurs across the world are women, according to Startup Compass, a firm that tracks such things. Except in Amman, Jordan and other Middle Eastern cities, it seems. There, the share of women entrepreneurs is said to average 35 percent. The reasons are complex and not always positive, including the fact that the Web makes it easy to work from home.

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