From the archives

November 1960 From “Climate Control and the Oceans”: Without a clear picture of how the ocean overturns and with no accurate time scale for interaction with the atmosphere, oceanographers and meteorologists alike are at a loss to explain adequately the general mechanism of the earth’s climate. Now man, with his carbon-dioxide-producing industry, has become yet […]

The rare spots of good news on climate change

The deadly consequences of climate change only grew clearer this year, as record-shattering heat waves, floods, and wildfires killed thousands and strained the limits of our disaster responders. In the closing days of 2021, scientists warned that the eastern ledge of a Florida-size glacier is about to snap off of Antarctica and US legislators found […]

AWS suffers third outage of the month

reader comments 12 with 12 posters participating Share this story December has been a rough month for Amazon—at least for Amazon Web Services. The massively popular cloud computing platform suffered its third outage of the month Wednesday, affecting Slack, the Epic Games Store, and several other services.  The AWS Service Health Dashboard shows the problem […]

How to measure all the world’s fresh water

NASA and the French space agency CNES plan to launch a satellite with the Ka-band sensor in late 2022 as part of a joint mission called Surface Water and Ocean Topography (SWOT), with help from the Canadian and UK space agencies. Along with oceans, the SUV-size satellite will observe the planet’s lakes, rivers, and reservoirs […]

The secret Uganda deal that has brought NSO to the brink of collapse

Enlarge / A man walks by the building entrance of Israeli cyber company NSO Group at one of its branches in the Arava Desert on November 11, 2021, in Sapir, Israel. Amir Levy | Getty Images reader comments 82 with 61 posters participating Share this story In February 2019, an Israeli woman sat across from […]

The architect making friends with flooding

I got a chance to observe Yu in his natural habitat that evening. He escorted me and Geng into the club through a set of engraved metal doors and across the courtyard, where the traditional stone floor had been replaced with thick glass. Inside he ushered us downstairs to a massive table underneath that transparent […]

2021 was the year of monster AI models

What does it mean for a model to be large? The size of a model—a trained neural network—is measured by the number of parameters it has. These are the values in the network that get tweaked over and over again during training and are then used to make the model’s predictions. Roughly speaking, the more […]

14 cybersecurity predictions for 2022 and beyond

Ransomware threats will continue to grow unless governments and technological innovations can significantly change the cost-benefit calculation for attackers, as the crime is simply too lucrative. These kinds of attacks are also expected to rise in critical industries where paying cyber criminals is imperative to protect health and safety. New tactics are expected from attackers […]

El Paso was “drought-proof.” Climate change is pushing its limits.

While farmers rely on the Rio Grande for irrigation, much of the water that El Paso’s residents drink actually comes from aquifers deep below ground. These critical water sources are also in jeopardy.  In 1979, the Texas Water Development Board projected that El Paso would run out of groundwater by 2031. At that time, each […]

How to save our social media by treating it like a city

The work of integrity teams provides a different solution. We may be in the spotlight now, but we have a long history in the industry. We’ve learned a lot from approaches to fighting spam in email or search engines, and we borrow a lot of concepts from computer security.  One of the best strategies for […]