Today in Tech
  • Math class just got a whole lot easier

    If you think Google's search engine is only good for finding cute cat videos or hunting down other people with the same name as you, think again: The company has just launched a built-in scientific calculator to the list of tricks its search feature can pull off.

    Ok, the calculator functionality isn't exactly brand new — you've been able to type equations into the search bar and have Google give you the result for some time now. What is new, however, is a full calculator keypad that pops up as soon as the search engine realizes you need a little bit of math help. Simply type "calculator" into the search bar and the new 34-button interface pops up instantly.

    You can even use the speech recognition function built into Google to produce math results without ever touching a key — a feature that will undoubtedly come in handy for hasty homework sessions. In fact, the intuitive math tool even works on mobile browsers, meaning you now have a free alternative if your smarphone's built-in

    Read More »from Google adds built-in scientific calculator to search engine, complete with voice activation
  • Paint absorbs harmful chemicals and can be easily scrubbed off of vehicles

    The possible use of chemical weapons in war is something no one in the military wants to think about, but if the worst does happens they need effective ways to deal with the fallout. Troops can remove their uniforms and be scrubbed down with hydrogen peroxide fairly easily, but what about their vehicles and other gear? That's where a unique new type of paint comes in.

    Developed jointly by the U.K.'s Defence Science and Technology Laboratory (DSTL) and AzkoNobel, the paint contains silica gel that absorbs chemicals and traps them. It's sprayed onto vehicles on top of a sticky coating described as being like the adhesive on a Post-It Note. This allows the paint to be easily scrubbed off after it's done its job.

    The paint is expected to be used on the British Army's Warrior tanks initially, but could theoretically be used on other vehicles and equipment. Now that it's been perfected, the next step in the development of this unique paint is to create one that can change colors to alert

    Read More »from New paint could help soldiers clean up after chemical attacks
  • Mars One wants to send you to the red planet, but it's a one-way trip

    If you've always wanted to live on a distant world, Dutch company Mars One wants to give you your chance to settle on the red planet. There's only one catch: You'll never be able to return to Earth.

    Next year, Mars One will hold a worldwide lottery to select 40 people to train to be civilian astronauts. That group will be sent to live in a desert simulation for three months, after which the initial pool will be whittled down to 10. By 2023, this group will be sent to Mars to form the first permanent human settlement.

    According to Bas Lansdorp, founder of Mars One, "We will send humans to Mars in 2023. They will live there the rest of their lives. There will be a habitat waiting for them, and we'll start sending four people every two years."

    Once the new settlement has begun to thrive, the possibility for a return visit to Earth may open up. Still, that's not guaranteed. Says Lansdorp, "our astronauts will be offered a one-way trip. We have no idea when it will be possible to offer

    Read More »from Want a one-way ticket to Mars? A Dutch company is looking for you

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  • FIFA official says England had best bid for 2018 World Cup

    LONDON (Reuters) - England's failed bid to host the 2018 World Cup "was by far the strongest contender", FIFA official Harold Mayne-Nicholls was quoted as saying on Sunday. "How could England have only got two votes? It was a big surprise," Mayne-Nicholls was quoted as saying in The Sunday Times. The 53-year-old, a former Chilean football federation president, was chairman of a FIFA group tasked with assessing the strength and feasibility of the various bids for the 2018 and 2022 World Cup finals. ...

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