• Anxiety surrounding mass shootings closes ideological divides -- briefly

    People who feel anxious surrounding mass shootings tend to abandon their political ideology on typically divided issues, according to a study. Yet policymakers — especially those seeking gun law reforms trying to stem the number of mass shootings — in recent years have largely failed to capitalize on attitudes surrounding this type of anxiety.

  • More evidence dossier did not start Russia investigation

    ABC News’ latest reporting corroborates the now well-known fact: The Christopher Steele’s dossier was not the impetus for the FBI’s Russia investigation.

  • Government hacking raises new security concerns

    News of governments such as Russia and North Korea deploying their tech teams to hack into companies for political reasons has made headlines (think Sony after release of the movie The Interview). But what about when the U.S. government “hacks” to get around security measures designed to protect consumers? Can those hacks backfire and put us all at risk?

  • An elevator tech that could save lives in a high-rise fire

    When there’s a fire in a high-rise building, safety rules dictate that you don’t take the elevator. You head for the stairs instead. But what if using the elevator could actually be the fastest – and safest – way to evacuate a building on fire? Seventeen years after 9/11, an Israeli startup is testing its solution to turn the elevator into a traveling ‘safe room’ that can facilitate rescue operations.

  • UN confirms 33 chemical attacks, constituting war crimes, by Syrian regime since 2013

    The United Nations reported Wednesday that the Assad regime in Syria continues to use chemical weapons against civilian targets, including three chlorine gas attacks on a rebel-held Damascus suburb and on Idlib province this year that constitute war crimes.

  • U.K. charges Russians in novichok case, May says “not a rogue operation”

    British prosecutors have announced charges against two Russian men they believe poisoned former spy Sergei Skripal and his daughter with a deadly nerve agent, and Prime Minister Theresa May says the government has concluded the suspects were officers of Russia’s military intelligence agency.

  • Microwave weapons suspected as cause of U.S. envoys' illnesses

    Doctors and scientists increasingly suspect that weaponized microwaves were the cause of unexplained noises and illnesses that afflicted U.S. diplomats and their families in Cuba and China in the last year. While a medical study of 21 Cuba victims published in March did not mention microwave weapons as a cause, its lead author told the New York Times that microwave weapons were now considered a primary suspect and that his investigative team was increasingly certain the diplomats suffered brain injury.

  • Gun owners are more politically active: study

    American gun owners in recent years have exhibited higher levels of political participation, not only in voting but in donating money to candidates and contacting elected officials, according to a new study. “Part of the reason majority opinions on gun control legislation aren’t turning into policy is that gun owners are a very strong political group who hold a lot of weight and hold a lot of influence despite being a minority in American politics,” said one researcher.

  • New technology may help police tackle emergencies at public events

    Medical emergencies for fans during athletic events can quickly turn into life-or-death situations. Researchers are using technology to help police monitor emergency and public safety information on game day. “Police departments and first responders can use the social media posts to reach people in need of assistance, including medical emergencies, disaster emergencies or criminal activity. During the start of football season, it can be used to find fans having heat-related medical issues,” says one researcher.

  • Global gun deaths reach 250,000 annually: Study

    A study conducted by the Journal of the American Medical Association (JAMA) has found that there are a quarter of a million gun deaths globally yearly. It says gun deaths are “a major public health problem for humanity.” The JAMA study notes that of the 250,000 annul gun deaths, almost two-thirds were homicides. The United States, home to 4 percent of the world’s population, accounted for more than a third of its gun suicides in 2016.

  • The first line of defense against acts of targeted violence

    Tragic events at the Boston Marathon, African Methodist Episcopal Church in Charleston, and Pulse nightclub in Orlando remind us that ideologically motivated violent extremists pose a persistent threat to Americans of all backgrounds. Our first defense against attacks is grounded in our understanding and response to terrorism within our country. While the ideologies that support acts of targeted violence are diverse, so too are our responses and prevention activities.

  • Better integration of big data, ICT in disaster response

    A comprehensive review of studies of the use of Information and Communications Technology (ICT) and big data in disaster response, identified some important gaps: more information is needed on the use of technologies. Most articles discussed the use of ICT in natural disasters which were mainly hurricanes and earthquakes. What was underreported was data on extreme temperatures and flooding, even though these events account for 27 percent and 26 percent of global deaths respectively.

  • Germany creates cybersecurity R&D agency

    The German government today (Wednesday) announced the creation of a new federal agency to develop cutting-edge cyber defense technology. The agency would resemble the U.S. Defense Advanced Research Projects Agency (DARPA), which is credited with developing the early internet and GPS. The German agency, unlike DARPA, will focus on cyber defense ad cyber protection. DARPA’s range of defense-related research and development is much broader.

  • Blocked from giving away 3D-printed gun blueprints, Texas man says he's selling them instead

    An Austin resident and self-described “crypto-anarchist” said Tuesday he’ll begin selling blueprints that would allow users to 3D print their own plastic guns — a day after a federal judge extended a temporary block preventing him from making the plans available on the web for free. In other words: If he can’t be the “Napster” of crypto-guns, he’ll be the “iTunes,” Wilson told reporters at a press conference Tuesday in Austin.

  • Napoleon's defeat at Waterloo partly caused by Indonesian volcanic eruption

    Electrically charged volcanic ash short-circuited Earth’s atmosphere in 1815, causing global poor weather and Napoleon’s defeat, says new research. Historians know that rainy and muddy conditions helped the Allied army defeat the French Emperor Napoleon Bonaparte at the Battle of Waterloo. The June 1815 event changed the course of European history. Two months prior, a volcano named Mount Tambora erupted on the Indonesian island of Sumbawa, killing 100,000 people and plunging the Earth into a ‘year without a summer’ in 1816.