These Dell Inspiron Chromebooks are only $179.99 and you should probably get one

by Chris Rierson, Mashable

Back-to-school time means back to lugging your laptop everywhere (except maybe the shower — don’t make it weird). If you’re a student, you are already saddled with a metric ton of textbooks to haul around, no sense adding to the burden of an already bursting backpack. What you need is an affordable laptop that is both compact and lightweight, but still has all the tech you need to get your stuff done.

Continue reading These Dell Inspiron Chromebooks are only $179.99 and you should probably get one

Scientists detect a black hole swallowing a neutron star ‘like Pac-man’

by Doyle Rice, USA Today

More wild news from outer space:

For the first time, scientists have detected a black hole devouring a neutron star, according to a report released Monday.

“About 900 million years ago, this black hole ate a very dense star, known as a neutron star, like Pac-man – possibly snuffing out the star instantly,” said Susan Scott, a scientist with the Australian National University, in a statement.

Continue reading Scientists detect a black hole swallowing a neutron star ‘like Pac-man’

‘Evil-Genius’ Neutrino Gun Could Finally Unmask the Tiniest Particles in the Universe

by Paul Sutter, LiveScience

These giant experiments are searching for the most-elusive ghost particles in the universe.

Neutrinos are perhaps the most underrated particles known to humankind. Physicist, smart guy and smart aleck Wolfgang Pauli first proposed their existence in 1930 as a missing puzzle piece — certain nuclear reactions had more going in than they had coming out. Pauli reasoned that something tiny and invisible had to be involved — hence, the neutrino, which is kind of Italian for “little neutral one.”

Continue reading ‘Evil-Genius’ Neutrino Gun Could Finally Unmask the Tiniest Particles in the Universe

How to efficiently charge your devices

by Harry Guinness, Popular Science

Back in the good old days of the early 2000s, every device had one charger. Some gadgets were a little more practical and used one of a variety of USB connections, but it almost felt like there were as many standards as manufacturers. Almost 20 years later, most of the industry is moving toward USB-C, and even Apple, known for doing its own thing, uses USB-C for its latest MacBooks and iPad Pros. Now, it’s possible to plug the same charger into your smartphone, tablet, laptop, and soon, I’m sure, your toothbrush.

Continue reading How to efficiently charge your devices

Prehistoric Monster Penguins: Awesome, Terrifying, or Both?

by Daisy Hernandez, Popular Mechanics

Scientists have discovered fossil evidence of a giant penguin (Crossvallia waiparensis) in New Zealand. The “monster penguin,” as the Canterbury Museum in Christchurch affectionately calls it, was the size of a human, standing at 5’3″ and weighing a mighty 176 pounds. (For comparison, today’s largest penguin species is the Emperor, who stands around 4 feet tall.)

Continue reading Prehistoric Monster Penguins: Awesome, Terrifying, or Both?

FAA threatens $25,000 fine for weaponizing drones

by Devin Coldewey, TechCrunch

It’s perfectly natural for a red-blooded American to, once they have procured their first real drone, experiment with attaching a flame thrower to it. But it turns out that this harmless hobby is frowned upon by the biggest buzzkills in the world… the feds.

Yes, the FAA has gone and published a notice that drones and weapons are “A Dangerous Mix.” Well, that’s arguable. But they’re the authority here, so we have to hear them out.

Continue reading FAA threatens $25,000 fine for weaponizing drones

Here’s how to view, download, and delete your personal information online

by Stan Horaczek, Popular Science

Set aside lots of time and extra hard-drive space.

Social media networks know a lot about you. In fact, that’s their primary job. They want to collect information about you and use that to sell advertisements that you can’t resist. In return for your data, these companies give you a chance to interact with other users and share your life no matter how interesting or banal. Recently, instructions have been floating around the web about how to see the secret interests Instagram thinks you want to see ads about. The results are sometimes hilariously wrong, but they can also be worryingly accurate. Your information is a product that companies leverage.

Continue reading Here’s how to view, download, and delete your personal information online

More Evidence that Planet 9 is Really Out There

by Evan Gough, Universe Today

What’s going on in the distant reaches of our Solar System? Is there a Planet 9 out there?

Out in the frigid expanse of our System, there are bodies on orbital paths that don’t make sense in terms of our eight-planet Solar System. There seems to be an undiscovered body out there, several times more massive than Earth, shaping the orbits of some Kuiper Belt Objects (KBOs), and driving astronomers to look deeper and more thoroughly into the extreme reaches of our System.

Continue reading More Evidence that Planet 9 is Really Out There