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Dinosaurs - New Scientist

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Long strand of DNA from Neanderthals found in people from Melanesia

Most humans have small snippets of DNA inherited from ancient hominins like Neanderthals. Now the first study shows some people have long stretches of it

Google gets green light to access five years of NHS patient data

A freedom of information request by New Scientist shows that Taunton and Somerset NHS Foundation Trust will grant Google five years of historical data on patients

SpaceX plans to put more than 40,000 satellites in space

Documents show Elon Musk's firm SpaceX wants to launch another 30,000 satellites - more than triple the total amount humans have ever launched

Early mouse fetuses generated without sperm or eggs for first time

For the first time, artificial mouse embryos have started growing into early fetuses, but we are still a long way off making babies without sperm or eggs

Technology’s future isn’t gleaming, it’s dirty and biological

We’ve always thought of tech as conquering nature, but the climate crisis is changing everything – not least what future advances will look like, argues Annalee Newitz

How well do you cope with uncertainty?

Complete this questionnaire to find out what your “intolerance of uncertainty” is, and what that means for how you can better cope with life’s limbos

In the age of fake news and manipulation, you are the new battlefield

With states, political parties and individuals jockeying for ever-greater influence online, you and your clicks are now the front line in the information war

Archaeologists are racing to find a lost city before it's ransacked

Ancient tablets from the lost city of Iri-Sagrig are being recovered from smugglers. Now archaeologists are racing to trace it before it is completely ransacked

How to use the Orion constellation to find Sirius the dog star

Some of the sky's brightest stars including Rigel and Betelgeuse are located in the iconic constellation Orion. Here's how to find it and then star-hop to Sirius

Desert ant runs so fast it covers 100 times its body length per second

Saharan silver ants only have 10 minutes a day to find food in the searing desert heat, so they have evolved to run at almost a metre per second

A second mutation that makes people need less sleep has been found

A genetic mutation that lets people feel fully rested with less than six hours sleep has been identified, months after a similar discovery

Mother’s attention may shape baby’s hormone system and temperament

Babies who are touched, talked to and paid more attention by caregivers develop more receptors for the "cuddle chemical" oxytocin over their first 18 months

Strange sand dunes on Titan could be made by cosmic rays hitting ice

Saturn’s largest moon Titan has strange sand dunes that seem to be full of organic molecules, which may form when radiation from space hits ice on the ground

Damping down brain cell activity may help us to live longer

Centenarians and other long-lived humans have higher levels of a protein in their brain that seems to reduce neural activity. The discovery could pave the way for longevity drugs

Humans evolved to think faster by slowing down brain development

Using stem cells to grow mini brains in a dish has let us compare the way brains develop in humans, chimpanzees and monkeys, and spot the differences

UK scraps plan to enforce age checks on pornography websites

The UK government has dropped plans to introduce age verification measures designed to prevent children from accessing pornography online, which had sparked concerns about privacy

These evidence-based strategies may turn the tide on domestic violence

Deaths due to domestic violence have surged in the UK. Evidence suggests that a mixture of programmes to switch attitudes and help violent men change can help

A curved invisibility screen could hide soldiers or buildings

An invisibility screen that bends light can make objects look like they've disappeared. It could hide tanks or troops, or remove eyesores from a landscape

Brexit, exams, trying for a baby: How to cope when life is in limbo

Living with uncertainty can be excruciating, whether it’s climate change, the next Brexit blow or wondering what’s making your partner late. Fortunately there are ways to build resilience

Deadly frog fungus now thrives where we thought it couldn’t survive

A notorious fungus that is devastating amphibian populations is far more common than first thought, leaving biologists wondering why only some infected animals die

Humpback whales use their flippers to swat salmon into their mouths

Humpback whales use their flippers to create a barrier that traps gathered prey, which they can then usher towards their mouths by swatting the water

The best of the 2019 Wildlife Photographer of the Year winning photos

The winners of the 2019 Wildlife Photographer of the Year competition include pictures of a surprised marmot, a lichen-covered tree and sheep in a fierce embrace

Nightjars time their epic migration flights using a lunar calendar

Nightjars are the first animal found to time migration by the moon, using its phases to know when to take flight on the journey from northern Europe to sub-Saharan Africa

Extreme snow stopped plants and animals breeding in parts of Greenland

Abnormally heavy snowfall in 2018 stopped almost all plants and animals breeding in parts of Greenland, and some migratory birds starved to death waiting for snow to melt

Extremely dexterous robot can solve a Rubik's cube one-handed

Artificial intelligence has learned to control a single robot hand with enough dexterity to solve a Rubik’s cube in around 3 minutes

How deadly disease outbreaks could worsen as the climate changes

Environmental destruction risks increasing the spread of deadly diseases including Ebola and malaria, with serious consequences for future public health

US green economy has 10 times more jobs than the fossil fuel industry

The green economy, covering renewable energy to environmental consultancy, is now so large in the US that it employs 10 times as many people as the fossil fuel industry

Extinction Rebellion protests should be embraced, not banned

The move to haul protesters off London’s streets reflects a scientifically and economically illiterate political and media elite in denial about the climate

Ancient jungle capital of the Khmer Empire mapped for the first time

The ancient city of Mahendraparvata has been hidden in the mountain forests of Cambodia for centuries, but thanks to airborne lasers we now have a detailed map of it

Maggie Aderin-Pocock on space travel and humanity's future

Space scientist and presenter Maggie Aderin-Pocock sees our future in space, even though it will take thousands of years to reach neighbouring solar systems

Huge fire blankets can protect houses from destructive wildfires

Wrapping a wooden house in a fire-resistant blanket can protect it from a wildfire for around 10 minutes - enough to let it survive fast-moving blazes

Astronomer Royal: We're destroying the book of life before reading it

In a talk on energy policy, artificial intelligence and space exploration Astronomer Royal Martin Rees called for urgent action at a crucial turning point for humanity

High levels of air pollution seem to be linked to early miscarriages

Pregnant women who live and work in places with a lot of air pollution appear to be more likely to experience missed miscarriages

Eliud Kipchoge's sub-2 hour marathon may herald even faster times

Eliud Kipchoge has completed a marathon in under 2 hours, a feat that shows just how far sports science has come. Other elite runners may now go even faster

Joseph Plateau’s spinning disc illusions were the forerunner of cinema

Joseph Antoine Ferdinand Plateau was a Belgian physicist whose research on visual perception laid the foundations of film, television and animated gifs

Renewables overtook fossil fuels in UK electricity mix for first time

Wind farms, solar panels and biomass have outcompeted gas and coal power stations for the first time ever over a whole quarter, in a significant milestone

Lee Berger: We have made another major discovery about early humans

Fossil skeletons found embedded in rock at a site near Johannesburg, South Africa, could shake up humanity's family tree

Cannabis extract may work as a treatment for cannabis addiction

An extract from cannabis called cannabidiol or CBD helped some people who were addicted to smoking the drug quit

Netflix's Criminal strips police drama down to its raw psychology

The laboratory-like setting of new Netflix show Criminal provides the perfect foil for stories that focus with clinical precision on the mind, says Chelsea Whyte

These New Scientist-inspired Twitter bots are surrealist art

Bots on social media get a bad rap, but they can be used for good and for art, like in these three headline bots revealed at New Scientist Live

Your heartbeat may shape how likely you are to have a car crash

A virtual reality driving game suggests that drivers’ reaction times are slower if they encounter an obstacle at the same time as a heartbeat

Data trial identifies vulnerable children who may otherwise be missed

A trial using data to prevent child abuse helped a UK police force drastically cut the time it takes child protection experts to review cases

Trevor Paglen exhibition highlights how prejudice is tainting AI

The epic expanse of photos in a new show at London’s Barbican Centre reveals a human side to artificial intelligence – and it isn’t pretty

Live: UK's first space rover, Tim Peake and the real life rocket man

We'll be live streaming several talks from New Scientist Live including British astronaut Tim Peake's question and answer session, the full announcement of SpaceBit's plans for the first British lunar rover and the real life rocket man Sam Rogers

Crabs are being found in the Thames with stomachs full of plastic

Crabs in the Thames are ingesting “shocking” amounts of plastic and may be passing it on in high doses to other species in the river, researchers have found

Cancelled Dyson electric car project received £5m from UK government

UK taxpayers gave around £5m to the company Dyson to support the electric car project that it announced this week will be scrapped

NASA engineer's 'helical engine' may violate the laws of physics

A NASA engineer has published plans for an engine that could accelerate a rocket without using propellant. But there are questions over whether it could work

Born in the big bang: How ancient black holes could save cosmology

Exotic primordial black holes born in the moments after the universe began could be the key to solving some of cosmology’s biggest problems… if only we can find them.

Want to regrow organs and defy cancer? Just copy these awesome animals

Creatures with incredible superpowers including the ability to survive being frozen and suffocated and resist ageing could revolutionise medicine, space travel and even war

Life may have begun with simple genes made out of urine

Urea, a chemical found in urine, can be used to make simple genetic molecules similar to DNA – which could have been the basis of the first life on Earth

Quantum weirdness could allow a person-sized wormhole to last forever

We were unsure if wormholes could exist long enough to allow a person through. Now calculations indicate they are extremely rare, but could last the age of the universe

Fridges made from twisty materials could be better for the environment

Cooling powered by twisting materials could make more efficient and sustainable fridges that don't rely on compressing greenhouse gasses

Wealthy families in prehistoric Europe may have had live-in slaves

Ancient DNA suggests that during the Bronze Age, wealthy families once lived with poorer individuals, suggesting live-in slavery could be 1300 years older than we thought

Depression may reduce the amount of white matter in the brain

Depression appears to cause changes to the structure of the brain, as well as the other way around. That may be due to behaviour changes that can shrink unused brain pathways

Will a ban on snacking on public transport really help combat obesity?

A proposal to ban snacks on public transport has appeared in a UK government report. But it doesn't seem based on evidence, and the government won't discuss it

Plans for UK's first moon rover announced at New Scientist Live

A UK-based space start-up is planning to send the smallest rover ever to the moon in 2021, and it will walk around on legs instead of rolling on wheels

You probably score worse than monkeys on questions about the world

New Scientist readers are more knowledgeable than the general public and experts on the state of the world, but still score worse than monkeys would on some questions

If we label eco-anxiety as an illness, climate denialists have won

The UK media reports a “tsunami” of cases of eco-anxiety in children. It is no medical condition, though, it is a rational response to the state of the climate, says Graham Lawton

Cold-blooded mammals roamed Earth for tens of millions of years

Two protomammals from the dinosaur era were still cold-blooded like their reptile ancestors, even though their skeletons and brains were mammal-like

Deep-sea anglerfish may shed luminous bacteria into the ocean water

Bacteria in deep-sea anglerfish give the predators a luminescent glow – but despite being adapted to this lifestyle the microbes leave for the open water

How to find the Apollo landing sites and dramatic craters on the moon

The moon’s surface can tell us much about the solar system's history, and our own. Here’s how to spot its craters and more, with Abigail Beall

Bees are better at counting if they are penalised for their mistakes

We had evidence that bees could count up to four. But it seems they can go further - if prompted with both rewards for correct answers and penalties for errors

Return of warm water 'blob' in the Pacific threatens marine life

The reappearance of a vast blob of abnormally warm water in the Pacific, around seven times the size of Alaska, has raised the prospect of impacts on marine ecosystems and weather systems  

Ancient humans planned ahead and stored bones to eat the marrow later

Patterns of markings from skinning preserved bones are the first evidence that humans living 200,000 to 400,000 years ago stored food to eat later

Mini organs grown from tumour cells can help us choose the best chemo

Miniature clumps of cells grown from a person's tumour biopsy can be used to test different cancer treatments so medics can decide which one is best for the individual

Some corals ‘killed’ by climate change are now returning to life

Warm water can leave corals looking dead – but in some cases polyps still survive deep in the coral skeleton and in time they can return the coral to life

Chronic Lyme disease may be a misdiagnosis of chronic fatigue syndrome

People who think they have a long-lasting form of Lyme disease are taking antibiotics for many months and may be treating the wrong disease

Longer life, flying, mind-bending drugs: Dreams that science made real

Robert Boyle's 17th-century wish list of innovations shows the world-changing power of basic research – and why we must invest more in it, says historian David Cannadine

UK space academy boss Anu Ojha on what finding aliens might mean

Anu Ojha, UK National Space Academy director, on the coolest moons in the solar system, finding alien life and why the best discussions happen with the young  

Takeaway food packaging may be source of synthetic chemicals in blood

The food packaging used in some takeaway and fast food meals, as well as microwave popcorn, appear to be a source of potentially harmful chemicals leaching into people’s bodies

We've discovered 20 more moons of Saturn – and you can help name them

We have discovered 20 new moons orbiting Saturn, all of them less than 5 kilometres across. This means Saturn has 82 moons, the most of any known planet

UK launched passport photo checker it knew would fail with dark skin

Documents released by the Home Office show it was aware of problems with its website’s passport photo checking service for people with very dark or very light skin, but decided to use it regardless

Experiments show us how animal minds work – but should we do them?

We've now found that budgies have empathy and macaques use logic. But such experiments mean keeping animals in unnatural conditions, raising questions about their value

Nobel prize in chemistry goes to developers of lithium-ion batteries

The 2019 Nobel prize in chemistry has been awarded to John Goodenough, Stanley Whittingham and Akira Yoshino for the development of lithium-ion batteries.

Your body's hidden language: How smell reveals more than you ever knew

We can sniff out fear, find solace in the smell of a loved one, breathe in the scent of happiness. How we're deciphering the subliminal signals of human scent

Real time badger tracking shows culling could increase spread of TB

First study of individual badger movements in the UK finds that culling animals prompts others to range further afield, increasing the risk of spreading disease

Tea and banana plants have been genetically modified by bacteria

Around 1 in 20 flowering plants are naturally transgenic, with added bacterial genes that can make them produce unusual chemicals

Buddhist monk Gelong Thubten on the science of mindfulness

Meditation and mindfulness are useful for modern life, says Gelong Thubten, because they can help us be less controlled by stressful thoughts and emotions

Nobel prize in physics for discovery of exoplanet orbiting a star

The Nobel prize in physics has been jointly awarded to  James Peebles, Michel Mayor and Didier Queloz for their contributions to our understanding of the evolution of the universe and Earth’s place in the cosmos.

UN agency meant to be limiting flying emissions votes to limit action

The agency’s own scheme will not stop greenhouse gas emissions soaring, yet members have voted to block all other efforts to slow the growth

Supercomputer simulates 77,000 neurons in the brain in real-time

A brain-inspired computer can simulate part of the sensory cortex in real time, using tens of thousands of virtual neurons. It is the first time such a complex simulation has run this fast

What the quark?! Why matter's most basic building blocks may not exist

Quarks are the subatomic particles thought to make up nearly everything we can see. Now it turns out they could be an illusion created by quantum trickery

UK scientists join the Extinction Rebellion climate change protests

New Scientist spoke to members of Extinction Rebellion who are scientists to find out why they are taking to the streets of London to protest climate change inaction

The key to a long life may be genes that protect against stress

Long-lived animals like the grey whale and naked mole rat have genes that protect them from stress and cancer

Sea of Shadows: Film documents demise of the world's smallest porpoise

Decimated by illegal fishing for the totoaba fish, the vaquita is the victim of global organised crime. Can a powerful new documentary improve its chances?

Microbial life might drift in the atmospheres of failed stars

Brown dwarfs are too large to be planets and too small to be stars, but they have gaseous atmospheres that may have all the ingredients needed for life

Nobel prize for medicine goes to discovery of how cells sense oxygen

The Nobel prize in physiology or medicine has been jointly awarded to William Kaelin of Harvard University, Peter Ratcliffe of Oxford University and Gregg Semenza of Johns Hopkins University, for their discovery of how cells sense and adapt to oxygen availability

New Scientist Live: How massive sewer-clogging fatbergs are made

Rafaella Villa will explain at New Scientist Live this month how fat, oil and grease can become huge underground fatbergs

We can send a probe to interstellar comet Borisov – but not until 2030

Astronomers are racing to learn about only the second interstellar object ever seen. We now know it contains cyanide gas – and we could send a probe to visit it

Gamechanger: L. X. Beckett’s latest sci-fi novel lives up to its name

Does sci-fi have a moral obligation to guide society rather than scare it? L. X. Beckett’s latest book Gamechanger shows how “adaptation lit” can lead us to a better future

Volcanoes and Wine: Why a match made in hell tastes like heaven

From Etna to Vesuvius, Santorini to Stromboli, volcanoes have long been linked to excellent wines. New book Volcanoes and Wine explores this unlikely terroir

Oldest ever illustrated book is a guide to Ancient Egyptian underworld

The Book of Two Ways is a 4000-year-old illustrated guide to the Ancient Egyptian underworld, and fragments of the earliest known copy have now been found

Anti-evolution drug may help treat resistant breast cancers

Some breast tumours evolve resistance to chemotherapy, but a new drug already in human trials could restore the effectiveness of the main existing treatment

Weird repeating signals from deep space may be created by starquakes

Fast radio bursts are mysterious signals from space. Some of them repeat many times - and these may be caused by powerful starquakes

Home aquarium hobbyists are helping save 30 rare fish from extinction

The pet trade often harms wildlife but some dedicated amateur fish-keepers are working to keep many species of fish from extinction

The hunt for dark matter is heating up at New Scientist Live

The hunt for dark matter is heating up. At New Scientist Live next week, astrophysicist Chamkaur Ghag will explain how to look for this elusive stuff

A mind-controlled exoskeleton helped a man with paralysis walk again

A man who has paralysis has managed to walk again using an exoskeleton he controls with his mind. The suit is directed by electrodes that rest on the brain's surface, but it can't yet allow independent walking  

Humans may be trading far more species of wildlife than we thought

Estimates based on two wildlife databases suggest 5000 species are traded around the world, with larger, more distinctive animals most at risk

We've had our best glimpse of a web of matter that spans the universe

A vast spider web of matter is thought to stretch across the universe. Now astronomers have seen its filaments between several galaxies for the first time

Thousands of UK wildlife and plant species are in decline

The most comprehensive assessment yet of the state of nature in the UK has found the area occupied by more than 6500 species has shrunk by 5 per cent since 1970