Buzz Aldrin hosts virtual reality experience on how to get to Mars

Astronaut Buzz Aldrin suits up for a countdown demonstration test prior to the launch of Apollo 11 on July 5, 1969.

Astronaut Buzz Aldrin suits up for a countdown demonstration test prior to the launch of Apollo 11 on July 5, 1969.  (NASA)

Buzz Aldrin, the second man to set foot on the moon, is looking to keep humanity going and get to Mars.

The 87-year old astronaut is hosting a virtual reality experience to discuss his plan on how to get astronauts to Mars. The experience, named Cycling Pathways to Mars, debuted at the tech conference South by Southwest earlier this week.

In the experience, Aldrin is placed on a lunar landscape, then goes on to show how humanity could get to Mars. The Apollo 11 astronaut thinks there could be two ships going back and forth between Earth and Mars on six months schedules in order to do so.

In addition to the experience, Aldrin participated in a panel at the conference on how to get to Mars, taking questions from the media to further expand his thoughts.

For years, Aldrin has been a vocal supporter of having a manned mission to Mars.

In June 2013, he wrote an op-ed for The New York Times, detailing his thoughts on a potential mission. In August 2015 — Aldrin, along with the Florida Institute of Technology — gave a “master plan” to NASA on how to colonize Mars prior to 2040.

‘Long Island Medium’ Theresa Caputo had her brain tested to prove she has a gift

 

NOW PLAYING’Long Island Medium’ Theresa Caputo talks overcoming grief

Theresa Caputo was determined to prove the world she has a gift.

The 50-year-old star of TLC’s reality TV series, “Long Island Medium,” appeared on FOX & Friends Thursday where she recalled getting her brain tested by a doctor in front of cameras to show there was something different about her.

“They did find that I do access a part of my brain that we typically don’t and that my brain actually goes blank,” explained Caputo on what the medical scans showed while she was channeling. “It almost like it flat lines. Like, it’s clear as I’m channeling.”

‘LONG ISLAND MEDIUM’ THERESA CAPUTO TALKS OVERCOMING GRIEF

Caputo said she was not surprised by the results.

“I always said that my brain doesn’t work like everyone else’s,” she explained. “I always said since I was a young child, ‘Mom, I don’t feel right. I don’t feel like I belong. I feel different.’”

Caputo added that it wasn’t until her late 20s and early 30s when she fully realized her psychic abilities. Before then, she assumed anyone could speak to the dead just like her.

“I thought everyone saw what I was sensing and feeling,” said Caputo.

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The celebrity medium has received backlash from some critics, questioning her reported abilities to communicate with the dead. However, the comments don’t phase Caputo, who insisted her goal is to help people move forward after tragedy.

“You know, everyone is entitled to their own opinion. But you speak to the people that I channeled their loved ones and it has changed their lives in a positive way,” she said. “And look, there are common things that spirits have me say. That’s not my fault that there are only so many different ways that people can die. Those things are common. But spirits talk about unique things that there’s no way I would know about.”

Search is on for 10-foot crocodile who ate a man while fishing in Mexico

 (Reuters)

Mexican authorities are looking for a 10-foot crocodile that reportedly ate a young man who was fishing in southern Mexico.

The attack was reported by three of the victim’s friends who were there and watched the whole thing unfold. They were able to escape unharmed.

VIDEO SHOWS HUGE CROCODILE JOINING SHARKS TO STALK BOAT

The gruesome incident occurred Sunday in La Encrucijada reserve in southern Chiapas, a protected area they had entered without authorization.

“Most of these events are caused due to unawareness of people coming to unauthorized fishing grounds,” an official with the Commission on Natural Protected Areas told El Universal.

TOURIST ATTACKED BY CROCODILE IN THAILAND AFTER TRYING TO
SNAP PHOTO WITH REPTILE

According to the Environment and Natural Resources Office (Semarnat), they have experts combing the marshy area and have put up warning signs.

The goal is to capture all 10-foot crocodiles and pump out their stomachs to find the victim’s remains, officials said.

Jack the Ripper mystery: Researchers hit roadblock

 Image result for Jack the Ripper mystery: Researchers hit roadblock

Mary Jane Kelly's grave marker (Carl Vivian University of Leicester).

Mary Jane Kelly’s grave marker (Carl Vivian University of Leicester).

Researchers looking to identify the last known victim of Jack the Ripper have hit a low-tech roadblock that will likely prevent them from unleashing their DNA testing technology on any potential remains.

Experts from the U.K’s University of Leicester that identified the remains of King Richard III have embarked on the project to identify Jack the Ripper’s last known victim – Mary Jane Kelly, who was also known as Marie Jeanette Kelly.

The infamous murderer is thought to have killed at least five young women in the Whitechapel area of London between August and November 1888.

SCIENTIFIC BREAKTHROUGH LOST? UNIQUE METALLIC HYDROGEN SAMPLE DISAPPEARS

The scientists were commissioned by crime author Patricia Cornwell to examine the feasibility of finding Kelly’s exact burial location and her remains as a precursor to possible DNA analysis. In a statement, the University explained that the effort to establish Kelly’s true identity follows contact with Wynne Weston-Davies who believes that Mary Jane Kelly was actually his great aunt, Elizabeth Weston Davies.

In his 2015 book “The Real Mary Kelly,” Weston-Davies claims that the woman known as Mary Jane Kelly was living under a pseudonym and was actually his great-aunt.

As part of ‘The Mary Jane Kelly Project’ researchers have already assessed Kelly’s burial location, visiting St. Patrick’s Catholic Cemetery in Leytonstone, London last year. The team studied the cemetery’s burial records and surveyed marked graves near Kelly’s modern grave marker.

PHOTOGRAPHER CAPTURES INCREDIBLE IMAGES OF ISOLATED AMAZON TRIBE

But finding Kelly’s actual remains poses a massive challenge, with the grave marker likely having little relevance to her actual grave. Dr. Turi King, reader in genetics and archaeology at the University of Leicester explained that the precise location of Kelly’s grave is unknown; making it highly likely that other remains would have to be disturbed in any exhumation. King noted that the communal gravesite where Kelly was buried was reused in the 1940s, making the researchers’ job extremely difficult, if not impossible.

“For the DNA testing to go ahead, it’s crucial that we know the remains we have are those of Mary Jane Kelly and given what we know, the likelihood of even finding her remains, let alone identifying them accurately, appears highly unlikely,” she told Fox News, via email.

To complete an exhumation application to the U.K.’s Ministry of Justice, researchers would have to make a compelling case for the exhumation as well as provide detailed information on the grave’s location, as well as determining whether other remains might be disturbed, according to King.

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The University of Leicester team estimates that, in order to locate Kelly’s remains, they would have to excavate an area potentially encompassing hundreds of graves.

“As information presently stands, a successful search for Kelly’s remains would require a herculean effort that would likely take years of research, would be prohibitively costly and would cause unwarranted disturbance to an unknown number of individuals buried in a cemetery that is still in daily use, with no guarantee of success,” said King, in the University’s statement. “Most human remains found during excavations remain stubbornly, and forever, anonymous and this must also be the fate of Mary Jane Kelly.”

Follow James Rogers on Twitter @jamesjrogers

Trump, Community Bankers Team Up to Boost Lending to Small Business

 

How regulations are affecting community banks

American Bankers Association CEO Robert Nichols weighs in on his meeting with President Trump over financial reform efforts that affect community banks.

President Trump met with community bankers from across the country to find out the potential regulatory reforms and other steps the federal government could take to help boost lending to U.S. small businesses as well as consumers.  American Bankers Association CEO Robert Nichols discussed how the meeting went on the FOX Business Network’s Cavuto Coast to Coast.

According to Nichols, community bankers were optimistic about Trump’s potential appointments to the government’s federal regulator posts.

“We had a great exchange with the president about the need to have people with real world experience in a number of those positions.”

When asked if the bankers in the meeting offered the president any advice, Nichols responded, “They all did Neil, that’s a great question, we talked in some specificity about a series of rules again, some legislative, some regulatory that are kind of getting in the way of additional lending.”

Nichols then pointed out the impact of mortgage and other lending rules on small business job creation in America.

“So we talked about some of the mortgage rules, we talked about some small business lending rules, which of course are so important to the small business communities all across the United States, which are a huge labor force driver in the United States.”

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Though Treasury Secretary Steven Mnuchin anticipated tax reform by August of this year, Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell (R-Ky.) said he thought it would take longer.  According to Nichols, bankers hoped lawmakers would pick up the pace on tax reform.

“The desire to get our tax code more internationally competitive vis-a-vis our peers and to reduce some of those rates, clear out the underbrush and get rid of some of those kind of loopholes… we hope that can occur expediently as well.”

Underwater video from 2013 ended up capturing an elusive whale

NOW PLAYINGFirst-ever underwater video of elusive True’s beaked whales

A group of students got an unforgettable science lesson in May 2013—but just how unforgettable is only now coming to light. While on an expedition in the Azores some 950 miles west of Portugal, as many as four beaked whales surfaced and spent about 10 minutes near a small inflatable boat, giving the instructors time to capture underwater footage of the whales.

But not just any whales: A study in PeerJ reports they turned out to be the rarely seen True’s beaked whales, which were first described in 1912 and had never been filmed underwater.

Only seven live sightings had previously been recorded—and New Scientist points out not all were verified—in part because of the elusive whales’ behavior: a brief surfacing followed by dives that can last up to two hours and take the creatures as deep as two miles down.

True’s beaked whales are identifiable by a white patch on their head that looks like a beanie, but the video shows new markings, including one with a white mask, reports Seeker.

That discovery could be a sort of wrench, explains senior author Emma Carroll, who says “it might be more difficult to tell the different beaked whale species apart in the wild than previously thought” as the Cuvier’s beaked whale bears similar coloration.

But there’s a flip side to the coin: More data on their markings could also make it easier for scientists to identify the whales. New Scientist explains that most such data to date comes from stranded whales, whose coloration can be darkened by the sun.

Getting better at identifying them could allow scientists to do something they’ve never done before: estimate just how many True’s beaked whales are out there. (This is the deepest-diving mammal on the planet.)

This article originally appeared on Newser: Underwater Video From 2013 Ended Up Being a Big Deal

Biblical king’s palace uncovered beneath shrine destroyed by ISIS

The remains of the Tomb of Prophet Yunus, destroyed by Islamic State militants, in Mosul, Iraq, January 28, 2017. (REUTERS/Azad Lashkari)

The remains of the Tomb of Prophet Yunus, destroyed by Islamic State militants, in Mosul, Iraq, January 28, 2017. (REUTERS/Azad Lashkari)

Archaeologists in Mosul have made a stunning find beneath the Tomb of the Prophet Jonah that was destroyed by Islamic State militants in 2014: the long-hidden palace of ancient Assyrian King Sennacherib.

Experts were documenting the jihadists’ destruction of the tomb’s ruins when they located the palace, which dates back to 600 B.C. ISIS had dug tunnels into the site in a search for ancient artifacts to plunder, according to media reports.

The Telegraph reports that Iraqi archaeologist Layla Salih found a marble cuneiform inscription of Assyrian King Esarhaddon inside one of the tunnels. The inscription is believed to date to 672 B.C. when the palace was part of the ancient Assyrian city of Nineveh.

TREASURE HUNTERS STRIKE GOLD WITH ANCIENT JEWELRY FIND

One of the earliest forms of writing, cuneiform harnesses wedge-shaped marks and was widely used in ancient Mesopotamian civilizations.

The palace was built for the Assyrian King Sennarcherib, expanded by his son Esarhaddon, and renovated by his grandson King Ashurbanipal, according to the Telegraph, which notes that the palace was partly destroyed during the sack of Nineveh in 612 B.C. Sennacherib’s invasion of the ancient kingdom of Judah is extensively documented in the Bible. Esarhaddon and Ashurbanipal are also mentioned in scripture, although feature less prominently.

Elsewhere in the tunnel, archaeologists found ancient Assyrian stone sculptures of a demi-goddess, the Telegraph reports.

ANCIENT HONORS: INSCRIPTIONS UNCOVERED AT SYNAGOGUE IN ISRAEL

The Tomb of Jonah, or Nebi Yunus in Arabic, is located on a hill in Eastern Mosul. The site was recaptured from ISIS by the Iraqi army last month during its Mosul offensive.

Jonah is revered in Christian, Muslim, and Jewish traditions. The Prophet’s tomb, which was located within a Sunni mosque, was destroyed by ISIS militants in July 2014.

Dr. Paul Collins, Chair of The British Institute for the Study of Iraq, which is working with the Iraqi State Board of Antiquities and Heritage and UNESCO to protect Iraq’s cultural heritage, told Fox News that there could be more damage at the site. “The tunnels, probably dug for looting, are in imminent danger of collapse,” he explained, via email. “If this happens the result will be even more destruction at a site that had already been devastated by the explosions that destroyed the ancient Shrine of Jonah – in effect we will lose a place where Iraq’s ancient, medieval and modern cultural heritage rests one above the other.”

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Archaeologists have been aware since the nineteenth century that ancient Assyrian royal buildings are beneath the shrine, according to Collins, who notes that inscriptions and a relief from a dig in the 1870s are now in the British Museum. “Iraqi excavations in the 1950s revealed an entrance to an Assyrian royal arsenal and in 1990 a large Assyrian building to the east of the mosque guarded by colossal human-headed winged bulls was excavated, but this work came to an end with the Iraq/Kuwait war,” he said.

Follow James Rogers on Twitter @jamesjrogers

Rabbit hole leads to incredible 700-year-old Knights Templar cave complex

 

 

A picture taken inside the cave complex  (MICHAEL SCOTT/CATERS NEWS)

A rabbit hole in the UK conceals the entrance to an incredible cave complex linked to the mysterious Knights Templar.

New photos show the remarkable Caynton Caves network, which looks like something out of the movie “Indiana Jones and the Last Crusade.” The shadowy Knights Templar order is said to have used the caves.

The Sun reports that the caves are hidden beneath a farmer’s field in Shropshire. The site was visited by photographer Michael Scott after he saw a video of the caves online. “I traipsed over a field to find it, but if you didn’t know it was there you would just walk right past it,” Scott said.

BIBLICAL KING’S PALACE UNCOVERED BENEATH SHRINE DESTROYED BY ISIS

Once inside, Scott encountered arches, walkways, and carved niches. He described the caves as cramped, noting that anyone nearing six-feet tall has to bend down inside the complex. “I had to crouch down and once I was in it was completely silent,” he said. “There were a few spiders in there but that was it.

Said to be 700 years old, the caves have been long been linked to the Knights Templar – a Catholic military order that played a key role during the Crusades. Named after Jerusalem’s Temple Mount, where the order was based, the order was founded in 1119 protect pilgrims visiting the Holy Land.

With the loss of the Holy Land, the Templars’ military influence waned, although they still held great economic sway in medieval Europe. In 1307 the French King Philip IV, who wanted to wipe out his debts to the order, launched a plot to bring the Knights Templar down. Many Templars were arrested on charges including heresy and dozens were later burned at the stake.

TREASURE HUNTERS STRIKE GOLD WITH ANCIENT JEWELRY FIND

Pope Clement V disbanded the order in 1312.

The caves had been closed for a number of years before Scott’s visit. Black magic ceremonies reportedly forced the owners to seal up the entrance to the caves in 2012.

While some people believe the caves are 700 years old, others think that the complex was carved out by followers of the Templars in the 17th century.

Treasure hunters strike gold with ancient jewelry find

The Leek Frith Torcs (Staffordshire County Council).

The Leek Frith Torcs (Staffordshire County Council).

An incredible haul of ancient gold jewelry has been unearthed the U.K. by two treasure hunters using metal detectors.

Detectorists Mark Hambleton and Joe Kania found the four torcs, a form of ancient necklace or bracelet, on farmland in Staffordshire in December. The finds, which were handed over to the U.K. government-funded Portable Antiquities Scheme, were announced Tuesday.

Dubbed the Leek Frith Torcs, the finds may date as far back as 400 B.C. and could be the earliest examples of Iron Age gold ever discovered in Britain, experts say. The torcs, which include three neck torcs and one bracelet, are thought to be from continental Europe, possibly Germany or France.

HUGE 3,000-YEAR-OLD GOLD ‘BELT’ UNEARTHED IN THE UK

Dr. Julia Farley, curator of the British & European Iron Age Collections at the British Museum, assessed the items. “This unique find is of international importance. It dates to around 400–250 BC, and is probably the earliest Iron Age gold work ever discovered in Britain,” she said, in a statement. “The torcs were probably worn by wealthy and powerful women, perhaps people from the continent who had married into the local community. Piecing together how these objects came to be carefully buried in a Staffordshire field will give us an invaluable insight into life in Iron Age Britain.”

The site in the Staffordshire Moorlands area was investigated by archaeologists from Stoke-On-Trent City Council, who described the find as “complete” with no evidence of other pieces.

The BBC reports that the pieces will be on display at the Potteries Museum and Art Gallery in Stoke for the next three weeks.

ALTAR OF VIKING SAINT-KING DISCOVERED IN NORWAY

“This amazing find of gold torcs in the North of the county is quite simply magical and we look forward to sharing the secrets and story they hold in the years to come,” said Staffordshire County Council Leader Philip Atkins in the statement.

An inquest Tuesday declared that the find was treasure, the BBC reports, with the artifacts deemed the property of the Crown, or British state. The UK Government’s Treasure Valuation Committee will offer a value to the metal detectorists that found the haul, the landowner where the discovery was made, and any museum that wants to acquire the torcs, according to the BBC.

Once the parties agree on the valuation, the museum would have to raise the money to pay for the artifacts. The finders say they will share the proceeds with the landowner.

FARMER’S FIELD YIELDS HOARD OF ENGLISH CIVIL WAR COINS

This is the latest stunning ancient jewelry find in the U.K. In 2015 a huge 3,000-year-old gold belt, described as one of the largest ever discovered, was unearthed in Cambridgeshire.

‘Wind jewel’: Archaeologists find incredible Mayan jade pendant

jade

 (UC San Diego)

Archaeologists have discovered a remarkable jade pendant fit for a king. Covered on one side with hieroglyphs, the buried jewelry belonged to a Mayan king who would have sported it on his chest ceremonially, the University of California, San Diego announced.

Not only is the hieroglyph-filled item itself fascinating to experts, but so is the fact that it was found in a rainy, parrot-filled corner of Belize, at the periphery—  and not the hub— of the ancient Mayan world. There, archaeologists have excavated a Mayan palace and tomb.

“We would expect something like it in one of the big cities of the Maya world,” Geoffrey Braswell, a professor of anthropology at UC San Diego, said in a statement about the discovery. “Instead, here it was, far from the center.”

Braswell is the coauthor of a recent study on the find (described in the paper as a “wind jewel”) in the journal Ancient Mesoamerica as well as the author of another forthcoming study on the archeological site where it was found.

RESEARCHERS UNCOVER NEW CLUES ABOUT MAYAN CIVILIZATION’S COLLAPSE

In 2015, Braswell and others excavated the jade pendant— as well as pottery and a couple of teeth— in a tomb that dates to around the year 800 A.D and is located in a place called Nim Li Punit in the south of Belize. According to Braswell, in the year 672, the jade pendant was used for the first time in a ritual focused on summoning wind and rain, which was essential for Mayan crops. Eventually, the precious artifact—which “had immense power and magic,” Braswell said— was buried.

Measuring over seven inches across, about four inches high, and just over a quarter inch thick, the jade pendant is the second-biggest of its kind to be found in Belize. On one side are the hieroglyphs, and on the other, a T-shape. That T, according to the statement on the find, is a glyph known as “ik,” meaning “wind and breath.”

So what do the hieroglyphs say? While Braswell and another expert aren’t precisely sure, they do think they know the king’s name, Janaab’ Ohl K’inich, as well as information about his parents.

“It literally speaks to us,” Braswell said, about those hieroglyphs. “The story it tells is a short but important one.”