Water Vapor Detected In Atmosphere Of The Planet K2-18b

Researchers have detected water vapor in the air of K2-18b, a conceivably habitable alien world about double the size of Earth. The findings, announcement made today (Sept. 11), follows released different study published yesterday declaring the revelation of water vapor, and likely clouds and even rain, on the planet.

The far away planet (it’s around 110 light-years away) was found in 2015 by NASA’s Kepler space telescope. The alien world is around two times the size of Earth and eight times the mass. K2-18b circles a red small star in the “habitable zone” — the distances where liquid water could be stable on a surface of the planet.

Researchers from the study today published in the the journal Nature Astronomy utilized information from Hubble Space Telescope in 2016 and 2017. That info was gathered by the group behind yesterday’s study. This allowed the determination that the world has water vapor in its environment. K2-18b is so far the littlest exoplanet that water vapor has been found on.

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U.S. Air Force Holds Space Wargame, I Hope They Invited George Lucas

On September 4th at Maxwell Air Force Base in Alabama, the Air Force Space Command started a wargame scenario set in the year 2029. Around 350 experts from at least 27 agencies are part of this wargame. Says Space.com.

The scenario for the Space wargame is intended to address threats across diverse, operating environments. It’s intended to challenge civilian and military leaders. My deep hope is that George Lucas is one of the civilians involved in the wargames.

I say that the Air Force needs Lucas, because the news I’ve read this week, includes a recent story in The Atlantic about U.S. military testing of artificial intelligence able to autonomously select targets on a battlefield and a man in China who cloned his cat.

Those stories, individually, make me think of a line from the book The Indian in the Cupboard — “you should not do magic you do not understand” — But together, these stories paint a picture of humanity as solidly on track to create a real life reenactment of Lucas’ Star Wars prequels. My species is inching closer to a time when a clone army will fight a droid army. And I want the U.S. air force to be prepared.

This is the 13th Schriever Wargame held by The United States Air Force Space Command. The Schriever Wargame 2018 lasted two weeks, and did not involve the star wars creator. I hope very much that they haven’t made that mistake this time, because the threats the human race is building, are a variety only he is qualified to imagine.

Google Launches And Open-Sources Machine Learning

Google open-sources NLS (Neural Structured Learning), a machine learning framework to train neural networks with structured data and graphs.

Open-source software means the source code is released under a license where the rights holder grants anyone the right to study, change, and distribute the software. This is huge! Potentially letting more people play in the machine learning arena.

Being open-source isn’t the only reason this is a big deal. AI models often process are unstructured like images, video, and audio. But structured file types are useful for machine learning projects to train AI’s in pattern recognition. This could possibly be applied to medical data like MRI or X-ray.

NSL also let’s non developers play with AI, machine learning. As the framework requires very little code, in some cases only five lines to get something running.

This framework also let’s people create “adversarial examples: files that have manipulated pixels, that can corrupt an AI’s processing. Letting users build machine learning models that could fight off possible attacks.

It may be that AI, like this will lead to better human experience and longer lives thanks to medical advancement, or this could be the first step toward training a T-1000, but this time without Dutch around to save us all.

H/T Internet News Flash

European Space Agency Satellite Swerved Avoiding A Collision With SpaceX

Three months after Elon Musk’s SpaceX Corp. sent its first set of satellites into orbit, other operators are already veering to keep their own spacecraft out of harm’s way.

The European Space Agency tweeted that it moved it’s Earth observation satellite Aeolus to avoid a possible crash with one of SpaceX’s Starlink satellites. The Musk-backed company launched its first 60 satellites in May, getting a running start on the company of the other billionaire funding space exploration, Jeff Bezos.

For the first time ever, ESA has performed a ‘collision avoidance manoeuvre’ to protect one of its satellites from colliding with a ‘mega constellation’#SpaceTraffic pic.twitter.com/kmXvAgpj1U— ESA Operations (@esaoperations) September 2, 2019

The ESA said this is the first time it’s performed a maneuver to avoid a collision and protect its satellites, but they believe this will become so common that using a manual process will be impossible. The agency said in a tweet they are preparing artificial intelligence to automate avoidance maneuvers.

H/T Bloomberg