Friday, January 5, 2017

Fake signs removed from California highways

At least two fake posters placed beneath longstanding “Welcome to California” signs on state freeways have been removed, according to a Caltrans spokesperson. The signs, first noticed by a handful of Twitter users, read “Official Sanctuary State,” and “Felons, Illegals, and MS13 Welcome! Democrats Need The Votes!” One sign was found and promptly removed Monday on Interstate 15 near Mountain Pass, just west of the California-Nevada border. Another was removed from I-40 in the Needles area near the California-Nevada border. California became a sanctuary state on Monday (1/1), following a bill signed by Governor Jerry Brown in October. The bill prevents state law enforcement officers from inquiring about a person’s immigration status, from arresting persons because of civil immigration warrants, or from participating in a joint task force with federal officials to enforce immigration laws. (SFGate)


Lost Native American Ancestor Revealed in Ancient Child’s DNA

Researchers say they have new evidence of how some Native American ancestors first came to North America. A few years ago, they discovered the remains of a young girl in Alaska who’d lived more than 11,000 years ago. They were able to figure out her genetic profile. Turns out, she was part of a previously unknown population that was related to modern Native Americans. They likely came to North America during the last ice age – roughly 11,700 years ago – when there was a land bridge connecting Siberia and Alaska. (National Geographic)


Taco Bell to roll out $1 nacho fries

Starting on January 25, Taco Bell will begin selling $1 nacho fries in a limited release. The fries will feature “bold Mexican seasoning” and include a side of nacho cheese dipping sauce, according to the company. Taco Bell been beefing up its dollar menu as it competes with other fast food chains for penny pinching customers. Last month it added the $1 “Stacker,” a quesadilla-like egg sandwich, to its Dollar All Day menu, and says it plans to add 20 new $1 items this year. Chains such as Taco Bell and Jack in the Box have been in a dollar menu war of sorts to compete with McDonald’s, which has been aggressively lowering its prices. Some experts say restaurants don’t make much money from heavily discounting fast food prices in the face of food inflation. But the restaurants can profit if the discounts lure customers to higher-priced items, or bundles of low cost items offered at restaurants like Burger King, Wendy’s and KFC. (CNN)


Researchers Discover Two Major Flaws in the World’s Computers

Two security vulnerabilities have been discovered that affect nearly all personal devices ranging from computers to smartphones. “Meltdown” and “Spectre,” discovered in Intel, AMD and ARM processors, allow hackers to steal sensitive information, including passwords. Companies including Google and Amazon have started rolling out patches, although there are no signs the vulnerability has been exploited. Patches for Meltdown could slow computers up to 30%, while Spectre has no real fix — and could lead to an overhaul in how processors are made.  (NY Times)


Bomb cyclone?

A “bomb cyclone” is poised to strike the East Coast, dumping up to 18 inches of snow on parts of the region and hurling 40- to 60-mph gusts. The storm, also called a “bombogenesis,” has caused at least 2,700 US flight preemptive cancellations, and 12 cold weather-related deaths this week. Some parts of the Northeast are expected to reach colder temperatures than Mars — whose latest high was negative 2 degrees Fahrenheit — by the end of the week. (Fox News) 


Crew Begins 2018 Studying How Living in Space Affects Humans

Expedition 54 crew on the International Space Station is starting the New Year studying how humans adapt to living in space for months and years at a time. NASA and its international partners are also learning how to support crews on longer missions with less help from the ground. The astronauts and cosmonauts on the International Space Station orbit Earth 16 times a day affecting their circadian rhythms, or biological clocks. Other projects include:

  • helping doctors understand how being away from the normal 24-hour sunrise-sunset cycle impacts the human body,
  • helping engineers design closed-loop systems keeping crews self-sufficient on longer missions beyond low-Earth orbit. He swapped experimental containers in the Biolab Incubatorcontaining bacteria cultures that could be used for carbon dioxide removal and oxygen production.
  • testing how a synthetic material integrates with bone cells to address bone fractures and bone loss in space and on Earth.



White House barring employees from using personal cellphones at work

The White House is going to start barring employees from using their personal cellphones at work, press secretary Sarah Huckabee Sanders said yesterday (1/4). Sanders said in a statement that the “security and integrity of the technology systems at the White House is a top priority for the Trump administration.” Therefore, she said, the use of “all personal devices for both guests and staff will no longer be allowed in the West Wing.” “Staff will be able to conduct business on their government-issued devices and continue working on behalf of the American people,” she added. The change means aides in the Trump administration won’t be permitted to use their personal cellphones on the White House campus. (The Hill)


US to end policy that let legal pot flourish

Attorney General Jeff Sessions is going after legalized marijuana. Sessions is rescinding a policy that had let legalized marijuana flourish without federal intervention across the country. The move will leave it to U.S. attorneys where pot is legal to decide whether to aggressively enforce federal marijuana law. The move likely will add to confusion about whether it’s okay to grow, buy or use marijuana in states where it’s legal, since long-standing federal law prohibits it. The decision comes days after California began selling recreational marijuana. Sessions compares marijuana to heroin and blames it for spikes in violence. (MSN)


FINALLY FRIDAY!! The First Friday of 2018 showers us with:

  • National Screenwriters Day
  • National Bird Day
  • National Whipped Cream Day
  • Twelfth Night

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