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Shoppers shelled out a record $110.6 billion online between Nov. 1 and Dec. 19, about $17 billion more than in the same period last year, data from Adobe Analytics show. Half of website traffic this year came from shoppers on the go using their smartphones, Adobe said, but most Americans still prefer to close the deal using their computers. The Adobe report measured transactions from 80 of the top 100 U.S. online retailers.
Flying over the frigid northern reaches of Mars, the orbiting Mars Express satellite captured images of the 50-mile wide Korolev crater filled with ice. Korolev is an especially alluring sight, not just because it's a well-preserved impact crater but because it's loaded with ice over a mile deep year round. Launched 15 years ago by the European Space Agency (ESA), Mars Express often focuses on glaciers and ice in the Martian polar regions. The Korolev crater's ice is resistant to melting during the warmer summer seasons because the massive plain of ice creates a "cold trap," ESA explains. When air travels above the crater, it cools and sinks over the ice, building a sort of cool "shield" over the ice. The Mars Orbiter looking down upon the Korolev crater.Image: esaSo even as the seasons change, Korolev remains brimming with ice. Most Martian craters, even in cooler regions, don't remain full year-round. As Mars Express zips over the desert planet, it takes photos of different strips of land, and then transmits the pictures back to Earth. ESA scientists then combine the images together to build a coherent picture of different Martian landforms, dried-up lakes, and masses of frozen water. These Korolev images above are composites of five different photos, each taken during a separate orbit across Mars. SEE ALSO: Scientists spot the farthest known object in our solar system, and it's pink Korolev is named for a giant in space history: rocket scientist Sergei Korolev. Korolev headed the Soviet space program and famously beat the Americans into space. The Soviets, under Korolev's leadership, sent both the first human and satellite into space. "He’s a key figure in space history — though he died much too early," space historian Robert Pearlman said. Mars Express continues to actively scour the red Martian terrain and transmit truly brilliant extraterrestrial images back to Earth. WATCH: NASA announces its servers were hacked
Discovered in August 2017 within a small building, possibly a shrine, at the site of Zincirli (called "Sam'al" in ancient times), in Turkey, the incantation is inscribed on a stone cosmetic container. Written by a man who practiced magic who is called "Rahim son of Shadadan," the incantation "describes the seizure of a threatening creature [called] the 'devourer,'" wrote Madadh Richey and Dennis Pardee in the abstract of a presentation they gave recently at the Society of Biblical Literature annual meeting. The blood of the devourer was used to treat someone who appears to have been suffering from the "fire" of the devourer, said Richey, a doctoral student in the Department of Near Eastern Languages and Civilizations at the University of Chicago.
Investigators from the Scottish Universities Environmental Research Centre used carbon-dating to sample 55 bottles of Scotch bought through the secondary market, discovering that 21 were outright fakes or not distilled in the year declared, Rare Whisky 101, which commissioned the study, said. The sale of rare collectors' whiskies is more and more popular, and this October a 60-year-old The Macallan Valerio Adami 1926 was sold for record 848,750 pounds ($1.08 million) at auction. "It is our genuine belief that every purported pre-1900 - and in many cases much later - bottle should be assumed fake until proven genuine, certainly if the bottle claims to be a single malt Scotch whisky," said David Robertson, co-founder of Rare Whisky 101, which publishes insight and intelligence for whisky collectors.
In life, it was the biggest, most ferocious dinosaur of its era. In death, it was ripped to pieces by ancient sharks as they fought over its remains on the seabed. Scientists have announced the discovery of a new species of carnivorous dinosaur that roamed Italy nearly 200 million years ago. Saltriovenator zanellai was a 25ft-long, hulking beast that weighed at least a tonne, meaning that when it lived in the early Jurassic Period, it was the largest-known carnivorous dinosaur that had ever existed. The discovery pushes back by 25 million years the known existence of big predator dinosaurs, although in later periods it was succeeded by even bigger dinosaurs. “Saltriovenator predates the massive meat-eating dinosaurs by over 25 million years,” said Cristiano Dal Sasso, a paleontologist from the Natural History of Museum of Milan, who led the research which was published in PeerJ, the Journal of Life and Environmental Sciences. The bones of Saltriovenator bear bites (green arrows) and other feeding marks (red arrows) produced by fish and other marine creatures Credit: Giovanni Bindellini/SWNS The dinosaur’s fossils were found in a marble quarry near the village of Saltrio – hence the creature’s Latin appellation – which lies about 50 miles north of Milan in northern Italy, in the foothills of the Alps. The discovery was made, close to the Swiss border, in 1996 but it has taken more than 20 years to extract the fossils from huge slabs of rock and to subject them to detailed analysis. The rocks in which the fossils were contained had been blown apart by dynamite used by quarry workers, making the task of reconstruction even harder. In the end, the paleontologists found 130 bone fragments, including pieces of the creature’s jaw, ribs, pectoral bones and a single tooth. “The sort of paleontology you see in Indiana Jones films works well for cinema, but in reality the piecing together of a dinosaur skeleton is for the most part monotonous and repetitive work,” said Prof Dal Sasso. Fossilised remains of the new species of dinosaur were found in the far north of Italy, close to the Swiss border Credit: Giovanni Bindellini/SWNS The quarry in which the fossils were found has been producing marble since the 15th century and provided marble for the building of Milan’s La Scala Opera House in the late 18th century. The dinosaur, which had sharp serrated teeth and formidable claws, lived in a coastal, humid environment around 198 million years ago in what is today the northern Italian region of Lombardy. It was 24 years old when it died – not yet fully grown – and somehow ended up in the sea, perhaps carried down to the coast after falling into a river. Marks on its fossilised bones suggest its body was feasted on by sharks and fish as well as urchins and marine worms. A skeletal reconstruction of Saltriovenator zanellai, which was around 25ft long and weighed a tonne Credit: Marco Auditore/SWNS “This is absolutely unique," said Prof Dal Sasso. “In the scientific literature, there is mention of some dinosaur bones (being) scavenged by terrestrial animals, such as other dinosaurs, and, more rarely, insects. (But) at least three kinds of marine animals left traces on the bones of Saltriovenator.” Saltriovenator – the name means “the hunter from Saltrio” - walked on two legs and is thought to have stalked smaller carnivorous dinosaurs as well as herbivorous dinosaurs. The second half of the name is a tribute to Angelo Zanella, the amateur fossil hunter who found the remains while exploring the quarry two decades ago.
Outbreak response experts at the World Health Organization (WHO) and at the vaccines alliance GAVI are already talking to the leading Ebola vaccine manufacturer, Merck, to reassess just how much larger global stocks need to be. "We're actively engaged with the World Health Organization and with groups like GAVI, the U.S. government and others to try to understand what will be an appropriate sized stockpile in the future," Merck's head of vaccines clinical research, Beth-Ann Coller, said in a telephone interview. Supply of the Merck shot, which is currently being used to fight a large and spreading outbreak of Ebola in eastern Democratic Republic of Congo, is not a problem right now, according to the WHO's deputy director-general of emergency preparedness and response, Peter Salama.
Altria announced Thursday that it invested $12.8 billion in Juul, valuing the firm at roughly $38 billion. Assuming the transaction dilutes the holdings of current shareholders, the founders each own stakes of 3.6 percent, or $1.36 billion apiece, according to the Bloomberg Billionaires Index. Bowen, 43, and Monsees, 38, each controlled 5.6 percent of Juul after a July funding round that valued each of their holdings at $843 million.
Scientists in Sierra Leone have found live bats infected with Marburg virus, a deadly hemorrhagic fever similar to Ebola and so far undetected in West Africa, a U.S. government statement said on Thursday. The African fruit bat is the reservoir host of the virus, which has caused at least 12 outbreaks of hemorrhagic fever on the continent. Angola suffered the worst epidemic in 2005, when 90 percent of the 252 people infected in the southern African country died.
Using its robotic arm, the InSight lander gingerly placed a hexagonal device onto the smooth Martian surface yesterday. It marks the first time in history that a seismometer has ever been placed on Mars—or the surface of another planet for that matter.
On an adjusted basis, the company said it earned 5 cents a share, beating the average analyst estimate of 2 cents. Key InsightsEnterprise software and services revenue, a key growth metric, was $98 million in the third quarter on an adjusted basis, according to a statement Thursday, down 7.5 percent from a year earlier. The company previously said it expects software revenue to underperform through fiscal 2019 due to a change in accounting standards.BlackBerry has pivoted away from making phones in recent years, reinventing itself as a security software provider under Chief Executive Officer John Chen.
Here's How We're Recreating Alien Atmospheres on Earth To Search for Life Beyond the Solar System
NIH Funding Opportunities
- Development, Implementation, and Management of a Funding System to support the Grade A Milk Safety Program and National Shellfish Sanitation Program (U18)
- Notice of Correction to RFA-CA-19-008 "The Experimental Therapeutics Clinical Trials Network (ETCTN) Pharmacokinetic Resource Laboratories (U24 Clinical Trial Not Allowed)"
- Development of Standard Core Clinical Outcomes Assessments (COAs) and Endpoints (UG3/UH3 Clinical Trial Optional)
- Notice of Removal of Matching Requirement Instructions for RFA-EB-18-003 "HEAL Initiative: Translational Development of Devices to Treat Pain (U18 Clinical Trial Not Allowed)"
- Notice of Intent to Publish a Funding Opportunity Announcement for Trans-Agency Blood-Brain Interface Program (R61/R33 - Clinical Trials Not Allowed)