Join Starfleet Academy at New York’s Intrepid Sea, Air & Space Museum

Our trip through the academy, Star Trek history, and “artifacts” (not “props”!). Shot and edited by Jennifer Hahn. (video link)

New York’s Intrepid Sea, Air & Space Museum here in sweltering New York City has a new Star Trek exhibition running through until the end of October: the Starfleet Academy Experience.

As a cadet at the academy, a wide range of interactive exhibits allow you to diagnose injured Klingons in sick bay, set phasers to stun in security, investigate the unknown at the science station, and more. After completing and signing in to each interactive portion with your RFID wristband, all Starfleet cadets must take the Kobayashi Maru test from the bridge of the Enterprise. At the conclusion of your training, the system says which part of Starfleet you’d be best at: are you captain material, or would you be better off as the next Mr. Spock? I learned that I’m not really cut out for security, because phasers are actually hard to aim. Gun-shaped guns turn out to be much easier!

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Turkey’s Erdogan shuts schools, charities in first state of emergency decree

ISTANBUL/ANKARA (Reuters) – President Tayyip Erdogan tightened his grip on Turkey on Saturday, ordering the closure of thousands of private schools, charities and other institutions in his first decree since imposing a state of emergency after the failed military coup.

UPDATE 1-Canadian authorities seek to contain oil spill moving down river

July 23 (Reuters) – Authorities are building a new
containment boom to fight an oil spill in a major western
Canadian river, officials said on Saturday, after the spill
breached a previous barrier…

Federal regulators says car makers “cannot wait for perfect” on automation

On Friday, head of the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) Mark Rosekind told an audience in Detroit, Michigan that car makers “cannot wait for perfect” when it comes to developing and deploying self-driving car technology. The Wall Street Journal reported that Rosekind said automation would “save people’s lives” in a time when auto fatalities have been up 8 percent since 2014.

Rosekind’s comments come after a man using Tesla’s autopilot system fatally crashed into a left-turning truck in Florida. The incident is believed to be one of the first involving a car in autonomous mode. Tesla has said that the car’s sensors didn’t register the image of the left-turning truck in the glare of the bright Florida sun. Although Rosekind didn’t address the Tesla crash explicitly, he noted that the NHTSA’s mandate is to reduce fatalities. Taking human error out of the process of driving could theoretically reduce fatal crashes.

Despite Tesla’s most recent crash, regulators seem enthusiastic about getting more autonomous vehicles on the road in the near future. Earlier this week, Department of Transportation Secretary Anthony Foxx told an audience in San Francisco that “autonomous doesn’t mean perfect,” but that “we need industry to take the safety aspects of this very seriously.”

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Canadian authorities seek to contain oil spill moving down river

July 23 (Reuters) – Authorities are building a new
containment boom to fight an oil spill in a major western
Canadian river, officials said on Saturday, after the spill
breached a previous barrier…

The assimilation of robots into the workforce as peers, not replacements

robot handshake One might ask why we would ever want to create robots that can do human work when we have so many people who need jobs. The goal of robotics should not be to replace humans with robots, but rather to improve productivity and safety, removing humans from harm’s way and enabling them to focus on things that humans should be doing. Read More

Pokemon GO blamed for illegal border crossing from Canada to U.S.

(Reuters) – Two youths unaware of their surroundings when they were playing Pokemon GO on their cell phones made an illegal border crossing this week from Canada into the United States in a remote part of Montana, U.S. Customs and Border Patrol said.

Aeropostale accuses Sycamore Partners of ‘loan to own’ scheme

July 23 (Reuters) – Bankrupt U.S. teen retailer Aeropostale
filed a motion against its lender, private equity
firm Sycamore Partners, in bankruptcy court late on Friday,
accusing it of plotting a…