Science & Technology

  • Homegrown apps capture 40% market share of TikTok since ban
    New Delhi, December 25 (IANS) Homegrown short-video making apps led by Josh have captured 40 per cent market share of their Chinese rival TikTok since the Indian government banned it along with other apps in June this year, according to a new report. Post ban on TikTok, a huge void was created and nearly 170 million TikTok users were left searching for options to entertain themselves at low cost. TikTok which had nearly 85 million users in India in June 2018, surged to reach over
  • Internet users can be manipulated into sharing private info: Study
    New York, December 24 (IANS): Online users are more likely to reveal private information based on how website forms are structured to elicit data, new research has found. The researchers at Ben-Gurion University of the Negev (BGU) in Israel showed that by using digital "foot-in-the-door" techniques, such as requesting personal information from less important to more private (ascending privacy-intrusion order), websites can successfully entice users to reveal more of their
  • Now stream Netflix on Amazon Echo Show devices
    New Delhi, December 23 (IANS): Amazon on Tuesday said that content streaming platform Netflix is now available on Echo Show devices globally including in India. The Echo Show users will have access to the full Netflix catalog to search, browse, pause, resume and stream movies or TV shows, including Netflix Originals such as Queen's Gambit, Jingle Jangle and The Crown using just their voice. "Customers tell us that they love the convenience of Alexa and being able to use
  • Indian pharma firms at high ransomware attack risk in 2021
    New Delhi, December 23 (IANS): Targeted ransomware attacks on the healthcare and pharma sector will surge in India in 2021 as companies finalise their vaccines to fight Covid-19, a new report said on Wednesday. Healthcare and pharma sector companies that have been in the front lines working to fight against the pandemic in the country are facing a new wave of ransomware attacks and extortion demands lately. According to the 'threat prediction 2021' report by Seqrite, an e
  • Brain cell that can help track distance discovered
    London, December 22 (IANS): Scientists have discovered that there is a type of brain cell that can track how far we have travelled and remember where things are, which are added to our memory map of the places we have been. The existence of GPS-like brain cells, which can store maps of the places we've been, like our kitchen or holiday destination, was already widely known, but this discovery shows there is also a type of brain cell sensitive to the distance and direction of obj
  • Pandemic put no limit to space exploration in 2020
    New Delhi, December 21 (IANS): If one thing triumphed in 2020 despite all the challenges, it was science. While scientists from around the world worked at a break-neck speed to find a solution to beating Covid-19, the pandemic could not slow down the human pursuit to explore space objects. This year specially proved to be great for bringing back samples from distant space objects that can significantly augment our understanding of the evolution of the universe. Chinese scientists
  • ‘Christmas star’: Closest Jupiter-Saturn pairing in centuries from December 21
    The next super-close pairing: March 15, 2080 Cape Canaveral (US), December 21 (AP): Jupiter and Saturn will merge in the night sky Monday (December 21), appearing closer to one another than they have since Galileo's time in the 17th century. Astronomers say so-called conjunctions between the two largest planets in our solar system aren't particularly rare. Jupiter passes its neighbour Saturn in their respective laps around the sun every 20 years. But the one coming
  • Watch Jupiter-Saturn conjunction at Bengaluru planetarium
    Bengaluru, December 20 20 (IANS): State-run Jawaharlal Nehru Planetarium in the city centre has made arrangements to watch the celestial conjunction of Jupiter and Saturn planets on Monday between 6.30-7.30 p.m., an official said on Sunday. "We have set up telescopes in our premises to watch the conjunction of Jupiter and Saturn on Monday evening if weather conditions permit," said the planetarium official in a statement here. Due to the Covid-induced restrictions
  • NASA to fly deep-space capsule despite power unit component issue
    Washington, December 19 (IANS): NASA has decided to fly its Orion spacecraft which is designed to carry humans to deep space without fixing a failed power unit component. During their troubleshooting, engineers evaluated the option to "use as is" with the high-degree of available redundancy or remove and replace the box, NASA said on Friday. As a spacecraft designed to carry humans to deep space, Orion is built with significantly more redundancy to protect against failu
  • WhatsApp to soon roll out audio, video calls for PC users
    New Delhi, December 18 (IANS): Instant messaging app WhatsApp is reportedly rolling out a new feature where a user can make or receive audio and video calls right on the desktop screen. According to WABetaInfo, a website that tracks WhatsApp, the audio and video calls are now rolling out to the WhatsApp Desktop app. Unfortunately, this seems to be a very limited launch for now, with the buttons also getting beta labels according to the tipster. The options to make audio and video
  • How NASA is planning to bring Mars samples back to Earth
    Washington, December 18 (IANS): NASA has approved the Mars Sample Return (MSR) multi-mission effort to advance to the next phase in preparation to bring the first pristine samples from Mars back to Earth. During this phase, the programme will mature critical technologies and make critical design decisions, as well as assess industry partnerships, NASA said on Friday. The first endeavour of this campaign is in progress as the NASA's Mars 2020 Perseverance rover, launched in Ju
  • Malware hidden in 28 Chrome, Edge extensions hits 30 lakh people
    New Delhi, December 17 (IANS): Threat Intelligence researchers from cybersecurity firm Avast have identified malware hidden in at least 28 third-party Google Chrome and Microsoft Edge extensions that may have affected 30 lakh users worldwide. The Chrome and Edge extensions are associated with some of the world's most popular platforms like Instagram, Facebook and Google Chrome. The malware has the functionality to redirect user's traffic to ads or phishing sites and to st
  • WhatsApp Pay now live with 4 top banks in India
    New Delhi, December 16 (IANS): WhatsApp Pay on Wednesday announced it is now live with State Bank of India, HDFC Bank, ICICI Bank and Axis Bank for its up to 20 million users in India. After two years of waiting, Facebook-owned WhatsApp payment service received approval from the National Payments Corporation of India (NPCI) in November to go live on Unified Payment Interface (UPI) with over 160 supported banks. WhatsApp can expand its UPI user base in a graded manner starting wit
  • 46% Indians taking online medical consultation amid Covid fear: Survey
    New Delhi, December 16 (IANS): At least 46 per cent Indians still prefer to connect to their doctors over call for medical consultation instead of physical visits to the doctors, a new survey has revealed on Wednesday. The survey conducted by online doctor consultation platform -- Mount Virtual Hospital -- was done across metros covering Delhi-NCR, Mumbai, Kolkata, Chennai, Uttar Pradesh and Bihar. The data was collected from age group of 20 to 85 years. The total respondents in
  • Don't miss the Geminid meteor shower peak
    New York, December 13 (IANS) Widely recognised as the best annual meteor shower a stargazer can see, the Geminids are occurring between December 4 to December 17, with the best nights for viewing on December 13 and 14, according to NASA. Sky watchers in the Northern Hemisphere can see Geminids starting around 7.30-8 p.m. local time on Sunday, with rate of meteors increasing as 2 a.m. approaches. In the Southern hemisphere, good rates will be seen between midnight and dawn local t
  • More Indians now hiding real identities on Facebook, YouTube
    New Delhi, December 12 (IANS): There has been a substantial increase in social media profiles by Indians who hide their real names, photos and personally identifiable information (PII), in order to not only harness free speech but also conduct malicious and harmful activities, a new report warned on Saturday. The platform being used the most by Indian users who want to keep their identities anonymous are Facebook (76 per cent), YouTube (60 per cent), Instagram (47 per cent) and Twit
  • Flavours added to vaping devices can damage the heart: Study
    New York, December 12 (IANS): Researchers have revealed the appealing array of fruit and candy flavours that entice millions of young people to take up vaping are cardiotoxic and disrupt the heart's normal electrical activity. Mounting studies indicate that the nicotine and other chemicals delivered by vaping, while generally less toxic than conventional cigarettes, can damage the lungs and heart. "But so far there has been no clear understanding about what happens when
  • Now edit Office documents directly from Gmail attachments
    New Delhi, December 11 (IANS): Google has announced a new integration of Gmail with Microsoft Office files to allow users to directly edit documents that they receive in attachments. Now one can edit Word, Excel, and PowerPoint files without ever leaving Gmail, and while maintaining the document's original file format. "Starting today, you can also open Office files for editing directly from a Gmail attachment, further simplifying your workflows. For example, when you re
  • This strange exoplanet behaves like 'Planet Nine'
    Washington, December 11 (IANS): NASA and European Space Agency's Hubble Space Telescope has helped astronomers identify a strange planet outside our solar system that behaves like the long-sought "Planet Nine". The exoplanet called "HD106906 b" occupies an unlikely orbit around a double star 336 light-years away, according to the study published in the Astronomical Journal. This is the first time that astronomers have been able to measure the motion of a m
  • Indian-American Raja Chari picked by NASA for Artemis Moon missions
    Washington, December 10 (IANS): NASA has selected an initial team of 18 astronauts, including Indian-American astronaut Raja Chari, to form the Artemis Team and help pave the way for the next lunar missions, including sending the first woman and next man to walk on the lunar surface in 2024. Vice President of the US Mike Pence introduced the members of the Artemis Team on Wednesday during the eighth National Space Council meeting at NASA's Kennedy Space Centre in Florida. &qu