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Obama Has Signed a Bill Erasing the Words 'Oriental' and 'Negro' From Federal Legislation

May 23, 2016 Starting May 20, “Oriental” will no longer be used as shorthand for Asian Americans in US federal law. The word “Negroes,” too, is out. President Barack Obama signed the bill during Asian Pacific American Heritage Month and ahead of a trip to Vietnam and Japan. “At long last this insulting...

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The CIA Only Follows One Non-U.S. Account on Twitter

May 16, 2016 The United Kingdom’s Government Communications Headquarters (GCHQ), an intelligence and security agency, joined Twitter today. Among its new social media friends, it now counts fictional martini-drinking spy 007, and a fellow intelligence organization: the United States’ Central Intelligence Agency (CIA). The CIA has been active on Twitter since 2014, tweeting...

CIA Only Follows One Non-US Account on Twitter

May 16, 2016 The U.K.'s Government Communications Headquarters, an intelligence and security agency, joined Twitter today. Among its new social media friends, it now counts fictional martini-drinking spy 007, and a fellow intelligence organization: the U.S. CIA. CIA has been active on Twitter since 2014, tweeting historical facts and tidbits from its museum,...

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FBI to Public: Have You Seen These Missing Warhols?

April 12, 2016 Even in death, Andy Warhol is probably smirking at America. The US government is offering a $25,000 reward for information about missing prints by the misfit turned mega-art star. Early on April 7, seven prints from Warhol’s iconic Campbell Soup series were stolen from the permanent collection at Springfield Art...

ISIS Is Destroying Cultural Artifacts. Here’s How Programmers and 3-D Printers Fight Back

January 22, 2016 Last year, it took the militant group ISIL only a few months to destroy hundreds of years of architectural history when it reduced Palmyra’s nearly 2,000-year-old Temple of Bel and 1,800-year-old Arch of Triumph to rubble. Since then, artists and engineers have been fighting to preserve the memories of these...

The Wikipedia Pages We Look Up Most, Globally

January 16, 2016 Who was mad at whom at the start of World War II? Or right now in Westeros, for that matter? Questions about TV, news, or history would once require dusty Britannica volumes. Now, we have Wikipedia. The world’s 7th most-used site turns 15 years old today, but even for those...

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The National Park Service Is Hiring for the Next Ansel Adams

December 11, 2015 Ansel Adams may soon have a successor. The National Park Service, an agency within the Interior Department, is hiring for a new in-house photographer. The job calls for someone to produce “large-format photographic documentation” of U.S. buildings, bridges, and landscapes for the Library of Congress. Legendary landscape photographer Ansel Adams...

This Is What Happens When an AI System Learns to Talk

December 4, 2015 Linguists and scientists have debated for decades whether humans are born with an innate ability for language, or whether we simply learn it from the examples of parents and peers. A new paper published Nov. 11 in PLOS ONE may hold a clue to the answer. Researchers from the University...

Google Glass Could Help Autistic People 'See' Emotions

October 21, 2015 This post has been corrected. “OK, Glass: What are other people feeling?” This is the thrust behind a new tool that helps kids on the autism spectrum understand other people’s emotions. The Autism Glass Project, as it’s called, uses Google Glass, machine learning, and artificial intelligence to recognize other people’s...

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This is What 365 Days Without a Vacation Does to Your Health

September 8, 2015 If you live in the US, the odds are high that you haven’t taken a vacation this year (or last year, for that matter). Before enduring another year without an official getaway, either because of work commitments or an otherwise hectic routine, consider the following: A growing body of literature...