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Disney Workers Find Peace with Yoga at Cinderella Castle

Fla. (AP) — They arrived before the sunrise, their yoga mats in hand as they headed toward the Cinderella Castle, three hours before Disney’s Magic Kingdom opened. The world’s busiest theme park briefly became a yoga studio as more than 1,000 Disney cast members took a free, 45-minute class as part of the company’s wellness program. Behind them, Main Street USA was almost deserted. No lines. No strollers to dodge. No vendor selling giant balloons. Just silence. “This is night and day,” said cast member Erica Zeyn, 22, of Orlando, […]

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We haven’t been giving Neanderthals enough credit

New evidence suggests they were skilled hunters. When Neanderthals are depicted in artistic reconstructions, they often have a spear in hand. Most archaeologists believe that Neanderthals were adept hunters, and we have found spears at Neanderthal sites. But our knowledge of how they used spears and how that compares with our own species has been inconclusive. Rather than using the spears for hunting, Neanderthals could have used them for self-defense or scavenging. But it turns out they didn’t. New research, published in Nature Ecology and Evolution, shows that Neanderthals did indeed use spears to hunt animals. The paper describes a collection of 120,000-year-old deer bones from the Neanderthal site of Neumark-Nord in Germany—two of which have perforations that clearly show impacts from a spear. These unusual artifacts prove that the earliest spears were effective hunting weapons. In a paper accompanying the new study, I discuss what the findings mean for our knowledge of the lives of the Neanderthals. Neanderthals evolved in part of Europe and Asia around 400,000 years ago, while our own species evolved in Africa. Scientists have traditionally thought that there were stark cultural and behavioral differences between Neanderthals and Homo sapiens, but recent discoveries have clarified that Neanderthals were more sophisticated than originally thought. For example, they cared for the vulnerable, buried their dead, and engaged in symbolic behaviors. It would therefore make sense that Neanderthals also hunted using weapons—even some chimpanzees do this today. Previous research […]

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Archery on Horseback Becomes Popular Again-As a Sport

It’s not just a method of hunting or a strategy for battle anymore, and the athletes’ training regimen is intense. By Heather Brady PUBLISHED May 22, 2018 An ancient sport is making a comeback among younger generations. Mounted archery, a tradition with roots in empires like the Ottomans and the Mongols, has become popular again in Indonesia. While ancient warriors used the practice of shooting arrows from horseback for hunting and combat, its resurgence has become friendlier: Archers from different countries go through an intense training regimen to compete locally and internationally. The sport involves shooting arrows at a target while riding a horse. Successfully hitting a target with arrows is tricky when an athlete is standing or sitting on stable ground; when an archer is riding a horse, it requires even more balance, a high level of coordination, and a connection between the horse and archer. Mounted archery was used by many ancient cultures around the world, including Native Americans, European nomads, and Asian empires. It appears across cultural images and texts for several millennia and continued to be used until gunpowder and firearms were developed. As guns became popular, using a bow and arrow became less advantageous, and mounted archery was largely abandoned as a battlefield strategy. As communities in countries like Mongolia began honoring their predecessors and history by exploring ancient traditions, and after the sport appeared in mainstream pop culture through franchises like the Hunger Games, […]

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Let’s Watch Mark Zuckerberg Testify in Front of Congress

Get ready for the wildest couple hours C-Span has to offer. By Stan Horaczek April 10, 2018 By now, you’re all brushed up on the Facebook news. You’ve read our story about how we got to the point where Mark Zuckerberg needs to testify in front of Congress. You’ve checked your own account to see if Cambridge Analytica got your data. You contemplated deleting Facebook completely. Now, it’s time to see what Zuckerberg has to say. You can watch the stream of the video above or check out the official page for the committee here. 2:35 pm: We’re getting started with comments from Science and Transportation Committee chair, Sen. John Thune of South Dakota. He’s laying out the details of the issue as well as a top-level analysis of why people feel victimized by this scandal. “I’m not convinced that Facebook’s users have the information they need to make meaningful choices.” 2:40 pm: Democratic Senator Dianne Feinstein now providing commentary. She’s focusing on the Russian Internet Research Agency issue, which Thune mostly avoided. 2:45 pm: Senator Chuck Grassley now making his points to Zuckerberg. Almost everyone is explicitly reminding Zuckerberg of how many users the service has. Grassley is calling out specific revenue numbers. Now, he called out other tech companies like Google, Apple, and Amazon. Nice reminder of the possible scope of this thing. Grassley seems to steer clear of Russia as well, but he did mention the Obama […]

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Why are US mass shootings getting more deadly?

By Tara McKelvey How US mass shootings are getting worse Three of the worst five shootings in modern US history have happened in the last 16 months. It began – more or less – with 13, the number killed in 1949 in Camden, New Jersey, one of the earliest mass shootings in the US. An army veteran, Howard Unruh, killed his neighbours. Over the next several decades, the numbers went up: 16 in Austin, Texas, on a campus in 1966, and 21 slain at a McDonald’s in San Ysidro, California, […]

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Six Grand Ideas To Fight The End Of Antibiotics

Overuse of antibiotics has led them to becoming less and less effective to treat us when we’re sick – leaving scientists scrambling for a fix. Here are some of the best ideas to tackle one of the 21st Century’s biggest challenges. The world is nearing a moment when antibiotics no longer work to treat infections. We are severely over-using the antibiotics we have – and that system is causing bacteria to evolve and develop resistance to the drugs intended to kill them. Appropriately, the phenomenon is referred to as antibiotic […]

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The Tiny Island Traded For Manhattan

Banda Run is a place where history meets legend, where traditional ships still sail past live volcanoes to a forgotten island that once changed the world. By Diane Selkirk 11 October 2017 We sailed out of the Arafura Sea, through the Timor Sea and into the Savu Sea. Soon we’d be in the Flores Sea and then the Banda Sea – home of the Banda, or Spice Islands, a cluster of 11 lush islands in eastern Indonesia. In the early days of sail exploration, these seas were known by Arabic […]

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California fires: Scores missing as death toll rises to 17

Fire survivor: ‘I don’t have any neighbours any more.’ More than 150 people are missing in wildfires that have ravaged northern California’s wine region, police say. At least 17 people are now confirmed dead and more than 2,000 buildings have been destroyed by the fires which broke out on Sunday. Eleven of the deaths have been in Sonoma County. One of the worst affected towns there is Santa Rosa, north of San Francisco, where entire districts have been destroyed. The Sonoma County sheriff’s office said 155 people were still unaccounted […]

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The female code-breakers that were left out of the history books

Over the last 100 years, women have had significant, high-level roles in breaking secret codes – from Nazi ciphers to the secret messages of Al Capone’s gang – but their contribution is only just emerging. By Chris Baraniuk 10 October 2017 Picture this. In 1917, the United States is just entering World War One. But to begin with, it’s military is small and its capacity for intelligence gathering is severely limited. There is no NSA or CIA. In fact, military code-breaking is being done on a small but intense scale […]

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