June 27, 2018

How to survive if you’re trapped in a cave

Thailand cave rescue: How would you survive in a cave? Image copyright AFP/Getty Image caption The teenagers and their coach have been trapped in the Thai cave for days A group of 12 teenagers have been trapped underground in Thailand with their football coach for the last four days. Heavy rain has flooded the cave system, hindering the authorities' attempts at a rescue. But what are the best ways to survive in a cave? We spoke to cavers, who emphasised the need to stay warm, keep hydrated, and stay out of danger when trapped underground. What to do if you're trappedAnmar Mirza, national co-ordinator of the US National Cave Rescue Commission, says the first thing to do is make sure you're not in any immediate danger. Rockfalls pose a risk, but the major worry is flooding. "You want to seek the highest point in the cave," Mr Mirza said. His advice is to try to guess where water had risen to in previous floods. "There's a number of ways to determine that point - loo..
June 27, 2018

Can India become an AI hub for the developing world?

Can India become an AI hub for the developing world? Image copyright Getty Images Image caption India is the latest country to join the race to lead in AI A recent report on artificial intelligence (AI) by an Indian government think tank foresees the country as an AI hub for the developing world. Research analyst Shashank Reddy writes about the possibility of that happening. India is the latest country to join the race to lead the AI revolution, which is still in the making. The world's richest - and most powerful - countries have long been in this competition. It cuts across all spheres of national power, from the economy to the military, because the idea is that leadership in AI will enable global dominance. The two biggest powers so far have been the United States and China, with each investing heavily in AI and its applications. So does India stand a chance? Yes, according to a report released this month by think tank Niti Aayog. Why automation could be a threat to India&#03..
June 27, 2018

Australian police acknowledge 27 deaths as probable hate crimes

Australian police acknowledge 27 deaths as probable hate crimes Image copyright Reuters Image caption Police say confirmed and suspected gay hate led to the deaths of 27 men in Sydney in previous decades The killings of 27 men in Australia between 1976 and 2000 were most likely homophobic hate crimes, police say. A New South Wales police taskforce has spent three years reviewing 86 cases in Australia's most populous state. It was prompted by a report from the Australian Institute of Criminology that questioned whether police had investigated some cases sufficiently. On Wednesday, police acknowledged that they had previously played a part in "marginalising" the LGBT community. "[New South Wales Police] acknowledges without qualification both its and society's acceptance of gay bashings and shocking violence directed at gay men, and the LGBT community between 1976 and 2000," it said in a statement. It added: "There were certainly people murdered because of their sexuality duri..
June 27, 2018

Malaysia 1MDB: Seized tiaras, cash and Hermes bags ‘worth $273m’

Malaysia 1MDB: Seized tiaras, cash and Hermes bags 'worth $273m' Image copyright EPA Image caption 12,000 pieces of jewellery were seized from properties in Kuala Lumpur Malaysian police have seized a trove of jewellery, handbags and cash worth up to $273m (£206m) from properties linked to former prime minister Najib Razak and his wife Rosmah Mansor. A $1.6m gold and diamond necklace, 14 tiaras and 272 Hermes bags were taken as part of corruption investigations into state investment fund 1MDB. Billions of dollars are unaccounted for from the fund, set up by Mr Najib. He has been under investigation since his shock election loss in May. Police describe the seizure of valuables as the biggest in Malaysian history. Jewellery accounted for the biggest portion, with 12,000 items gathered - the most expensive being the $1.6m necklace. Malaysia politics: $4 sandals vs luxury Birkin bags Corruption, money and Malaysia's election A total of 567 handbags containing almost $30..
June 27, 2018

Myanmar military leaders ‘guilty of crimes against humanity’

Myanmar military leaders 'guilty of crimes against humanity' Image copyright AFP Image caption Myanmar's army is accused of a systematic campaign of ethnic cleansing Amnesty International has said top officials in Myanmar's military should be tried for crimes against humanity. The rights group released what it says is detailed evidence of the military's crimes during the brutal crackdown on the Muslim Rohingya minority. Amnesty says soldiers targeted villagers in a co-ordinated campaign of rape, torture and murder. It also says the military had prepared its offensive before the attacks it has always said were the trigger. There has been no immediate reaction from the Myanmar military but it has always denied accusations of ethnic cleansing and using excessive force. What happened in Myanmar?In August 2017, Rohingya militants - the Arakan Rohingya Salvation Army(Arsa) - attacked several police posts in Rakhine state. The military responded by launching a ma..
June 27, 2018

Rebel Wilson ordered to repay millions in defamation case

Rebel Wilson ordered to repay millions in defamation case Image copyright EPA Image caption Rebel Wilson won a defamation lawsuit against Bauer Media last year An Australian court has ordered actress Rebel Wilson to repay the majority of her record defamation payout from a magazine publisher. Wilson had received A$4.7m (£2.6m; $3.5m) in damages and interest from Bauer Media over articles that she said portrayed her as a serial liar. But a court reduced the sum to A$600,000 earlier this month following an appeal by the publisher. On Wednesday, Wilson was ordered to pay back A$4.1m and A$60,000 in interest. She will also have to cover 80% of what Bauer spent on its appeal. Wilson, an Australian star of Hollywood films including Pitch Perfect and Bridesmaids, has vowed to give all of her compensation to charity. In its original finding, the Supreme Court of Victoria awarded her A$650,000 in general damages and $A3.9m for film roles she had lost out on. She was later paid A$180,000 in int..
June 27, 2018

Thailand cave rescue: Troops race to reach youth football team

Thailand cave rescue: Troops race to reach youth football team Image copyright EPA Image caption Soldiers, divers and special troops are working around the clock to look for the missing group. Heavy rains are hampering efforts to reach 12 teenagers and their football coach who have been trapped in a cave in Thailand for four days. Rising water levels caused by overnight rains frustrated hundreds of rescue workers as they worked to drain water from inside the cave. Officials are now trying to find another opening into the cave, after the main entrance became inaccessible. There has been no contact with the group since Saturday. But on Tuesday, navy divers reported seeing fresh footprints inside the cave complex, raising hopes for the group's safety. Image caption The Tham Luang Nang Non cave in Thailand's Chiang Rai province runs for many kilometres underground. Image caption Thailand is susceptible to flooding during its rainy season, which runs from now until October. Th..
June 27, 2018

Is your beauty routine killing the beasts?

Palm oil: Are your beauty products killing orangutans? Image copyright EPA Does your lipstick threaten the future of one of our closest living relatives, the orangutan? Is that slobbering slice of pizza you're having in front of the World Cup on TV worth the life of a tiger? Pizza, biscuits, and beauty treatments are some of the thousands of products that contain palm oil, which threaten iconic species through deforestation. But this new study says that planting alternative oils could pose an even bigger danger to living things. Why is this story important?Palm oil has often been held up as a truly terrible blight on the environment, responsible for the clearing of tropical forests and posing huge threats to iconic species. But this report says the reality is very complex. While palm oil is only responsible for 0.4% of global deforestation it is having dramatic impacts in some locations in Indonesia and Malaysia, causing 50% in some locations. Simply banning palm wouldn't ..
June 26, 2018

Japan’s Hayabusa 2 spacecraft reaches cosmic ‘diamond’

Japan's Hayabusa 2 spacecraft reaches cosmic 'diamond' Image copyright Jaxa et al. Image caption Scientists will map Ryugu with a view to choosing the best location to sample A Japanese spacecraft has arrived at its target - an asteroid shaped like a diamond or, according to some, a spinning top. Hayabusa 2 has been travelling toward the space rock Ryugu since launching from the Tanegashima spaceport in 2014. It is on a quest to study the object close-up and deliver rocks and soil from Ryugu to Earth. It will use explosives to propel a projectile into Ryugu, digging out a fresh sample from beneath the surface. Dr Makoto Yoshikawa, Hayabusa 2's mission manager, talked about the plan now that the spacecraft had arrived at its destination. "At first, we will study very carefully the surface features. Then we will select where to touch down. Touchdown means we get the surface material," he told me. A copper projectile, or "impactor" will separate from the spacecraft, ..
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