Competition for mates between prehistoric human women may have contributed to'concealed ovulation' – a lack of any notable physical clues that a woman is fertile, experts say. Using computational models, US researchers found evidence that concealed ovulation in humans – which is unusual in the animal kingdom – evolved to allow women to hide their fertility status from other females. This would have helped avoid female conflict, perhaps driven by aggression towards potential rivals for male mates. Previously, scientists have thought women evolved to conceal ovulation from males to encourage them to help with looking after children. The new research shows that the origin of concealed ovulation might have actually have been much more female-oriented than previously thought. 'The study of human evolution has tended to look at things from a male perspective,' said senior study author Athena Aktipis, associate professor of psychology at Arizona State University in the US.
Scientists have found an'exquisitely preserved' skull of a herbivorous dinosaur species in New Mexico, known for its weird head adornment. The skull belongs to the iconic tube-crested dinosaur Parasaurolophus, which lived during the Late Cretaceous Period, about 76.5 million to 73 million years ago. The huge herbivorous reptiles sported trumpet-like nasal passages which they blew air into through the so-called tube on their head. This particular skull belonged to one particular species of the Parasaurolophus genus – Parasaurolophus cyrtocristatus. Despite its extreme morphology, details of the specimen show that the crest is formed much like the crests of other, related duckbilled dinosaurs. Tube-crested dinosaurs, known as Parasaurolophus, lived during the Late Cretaceous Period, about 76.5 million to 73 million years ago.
Growing up in a bilingual home can provide unexpected cognitive benefits later in life – especially if exposed to two or more languages from birth. UK experts found that adults who were exposed earlier to two languages in their lives were the highest performers in cognitive tests. 'Early bilinguals' – those who learn a second language as an infant or young child – have cognitive advantages over those who learn a second language later, suggesting the earlier we're exposed to two languages, the better for our brains. In the experiments, early bilinguals were found to be quicker at shifting attention and detecting visual changes compared to adults who learnt their second language later in life (late bilinguals). Both early and late bilinguals performed better than those people who spent their early lives in single-language homes.
If you've made some resolutions to improve your health and fitness for 2021 or want to get the family more active during lockdown 3.0, then a fitness tracker is a brilliant gadget for helping you stay accountable. You may previously have been put off by their high price point, but thousands of Amazon shoppers have discovered an incredibly affordable option - and it's a pretty decent dupe of the more expensive models including the Fitbit Versa. The TEMINICE High-End Fitness Tracker is just £31.44 yet comes with an impressive amount of features including all-day activity tracking like steps, distance, calories burned and active minutes, as well as heart and sleep monitoring. It even receives calls and notifications. The TEMINICE High-End Fitness Tracker is the number one bestselling pedometer on Amazon - and it only costs £31.44 The list of features and the full-touch colour screen has meant it's scored highly with shoppers.
Vulnerable elephant populations are now being tracked from space using Earth-observation satellites and a type of artificial intelligence (AI) called machine learning. As part of an international project, researchers are using satellite images processed with computer algorithms, which are trained with more than 1,000 images of elephants to help spot the creatures. With machine learning, the algorithms can count elephants even on'complex geographical landscapes', such as those dotted with trees and shrubs. Researchers say this method is a promising new tool for surveying endangered wildlife and can detect animals with the same accuracy as humans. Elephants in woodland as seen from space.
A swimming robot that mimics the super-effective way that jellyfish move about underwater could soon be used to explore coral reefs and archaeological sites. Experts use a measure called the'cost of transport' to compare the movement efficiency of different species from across the animal kingdom. Such studies have show that nature's more efficient mover -- easily beating out running and flying animals and bony fish -- is the moon jellyfish, Aurelia aurita. These soft-bodied creatures move by squeezing their bodies in order to expel a jet of water that propels them forward. Inspired by this, engineers from Southampton and Edinburgh built a jet-driven robot that is around 10–50 times more efficient that its propeller-driven peers.
People tend to make snap judgments on each other in a single look and now an algorithm claims to have the same ability to determine trustworthiness for obtaining a loan in just two minutes. Tokyo-based DeepScore unveiled its facial and voice recognition app last week at the Consumer Electronics Show that is touted as a'next-generation scoring engine' for loan lenders, insurance companies and other financial institutions. While a customer answers 10 question, the AI analyzes their face and voice to calculate a'True Score' that can be help companies with the decision to deny or approve. DeepScore says its AI can determine lies with 70 percent accuracy and a 30 percent false negative rate, and will alert companies that fees need to be increased if dishonesty is detected. However, scientists raise concerns about bias saying the app is likely to discriminate against people with tics or anxiety, resulting in these individuals not receiving necessary funds or coverage, Motherboard reports.
Combining living tissue with cold metal robots may sound like a plot from the James Cameron film'Terminator,' but the idea is being developed for real-world machines at the Army Research Laboratory (ARL). The US military group is working on a series of'biohybrid robotics' that integrates living organisms into mechanical systems that'produces never-seen-before agility and versatile.' The team envisions growing muscle tissue in a lab that would be added to robotic joints in place of traditional actuators – components responsible for moving and controlling mechanisms. The project aims to give robots the same agility and precision that muscles offer biological systems, allowing these futuristic machines to venture into spaces too risky for human soldiers. The US military group is working on a series of'biohybrid robotics' that integrates living organisms into mechanical systems that'produces never-seen-before agility and versatile.'
Eyesight tests could be used to identify which people with Parkinson's disease are likely to suffer from cognitive impairment and possible dementia 18 months later. UK researchers have found that people with Parkinson's who perform less well in eye tests show worse cognitive performance a year and a half later. The study is one of two by University College London (UCL) published this month looking at people with Parkinson's – the progressive nervous system disorder that causes shakiness and stiffness. The second study found structural and functional connections of brain regions become'decoupled' throughout the entire brain in people with Parkinson's disease, particularly among people with vision problems. The findings support previous evidence that vision changes precede the cognitive decline that occurs in many, but not all, people with Parkinson's.
While face masks were once rare sightings, they're now compulsory in a range of settings across the UK. The face coverings play a key role in stopping the spread of Covid-19, yet many iPhone users have been frustrated that their masks have prevented them from unlocking their iPhones using Apple's facial recognition technology, Face ID. Now, a report indicates that Apple could be bringing back its Touch ID technology in its 2021 iPhone, in the form of an in-screen fingerprint reader, to help users unlock their smartphones without having to remove their masks. Rather than being a replacement for Face ID, Touch ID would be an additional method of unlocking the iPhone, according to the report. Many iPhone users have been frustrated that their masks have prevented them from unlocking their iPhone using Apple's facial recognition technology, Face ID (stock image) The report, by Bloomberg, indicates that changes to this year's iPhone will be minor.