Israel’s first spacecraft to moon sends selfie

JERUSALEM, Undefined (AFP) — An Israeli spacecraft on its maiden mission to the moon has sent its first selfie back to Earth, mission chiefs said on Tuesday. The image showing part of the Beresheet spacecraft with Earth in the background was beamed to mission control in Yehud, Israel — 37,600 kilometres (23,360 miles) away, the project’s lead partners said in a statement. The partners, NGO SpaceIL and state-owned Israel Aerospace Industries, launched the unmanned Beresheet […]

Google fights European copyright overhaul

  BRUSSELS, Belgium (AFP) — Internet giant Google on Monday urged the European Parliament to resist approving a planned overhaul of the bloc’s online copyright law that the company said would hurt Europe for “decades to come”. European lawmakers could vote as soon as next week on the landmark legislation that is intended to modernise copyright for the digital age but has set off a furious lobbying war in Brussels. Tech giants, artistic creators and […]

SpaceX Dragon capsule successfully docks with ISS

by Ivan Couronne Agence France Presse WASHINGTON, United States (AFP) — The demonstration mission of SpaceX’s new Crew Dragon capsule successfully docked Sunday on the International Space Station, passing a key test before it can begin taking US astronauts into space. The docking of the capsule, which has only a dummy on board, was concluded at 1051 GMT, nearly 250 miles (400 kilometers) over the surface of the Earth, NASA and SpaceX confirmed during a […]

Dragon capsule successfully separates from rocket: SpaceX

  CAPE CANAVERAL, United States (AFP) — SpaceX’s new Crew Dragon astronaut capsule was on its way to the International Space Station Saturday after it successfully launched from Florida on board a Falcon 9 rocket. With only a dummy named Ripley on board, the launch was a dress rehearsal for the first manned test flight — scheduled for later this year with two NASA astronauts. The rocket blasted off without incident at 2:49 am (0749 […]

YouTube to block comments on most videos showing minors

  SAN FRANCISCO, United States (AFP) — YouTube said Thursday it will disable user comments on a broad array of videos featuring children to thwart “predatory behavior” after revelations about a glitch exploited for sharing of child pornography. The Google-owned video sharing service announced further steps to crack down on inappropriate comments a week after an investigation showing how comments and connections on child porn were being displayed alongside innocuous videos. “We recognize that comments […]

Canada ‘going to the Moon’: Trudeau

OTTAWA, Canada (AFP) — Canada will join NASA’s space mission to put an orbiter around the Moon in a few years, Prime Minister Justin Trudeau announced Thursday. “Canada is going to the Moon,” Trudeau told a press conference that included a live video link from the International Space Station with Canadian astronaut David Saint-Jacques. NASA plans to build a small space station, dubbed Gateway, in the Moon’s orbit by 2026. It will serve as a […]

Mini miracle: ‘Record-breaking’ preemie leaves Tokyo hospital

  TOKYO, Japan (AFP) — A baby born in Tokyo weighing the same as a large onion has gone home healthy, becoming the smallest newborn boy in the world to leave hospital safely. The tiny tot weighed just 268 grams — under 10 ounces — when he was delivered at 24 weeks, reportedly after he stopped growing in the womb. He was so small he fit in an adult’s cupped hands. But after five months […]

Elon Musk tweet may cost him job as Tesla CEO

NEW YORK, United States (AFP) — The standoff between US stock regulators and mercurial Tesla chief Elon Musk has taken a dramatic turn over a tweet that could cost the entrepreneur his job as CEO of the electric carmaker. Musk, 47, is a visionary and inventive boss but is also highly unpredictable, especially on social network Twitter, where he often communicates in defiance of rules imposed on executives of publicly-traded companies. The Securities and Exchange […]

Foldable phone outlook hinges on price

by Daniel SILVA Agence France-Presse BARCELONA, Spain (AFP) — Handset makers are racing to launch their first smartphones with folding screens but analysts warn the technology is still too rudimentary — and expensive — to woo consumers in large numbers for now. Samsung, the world’s biggest seller of smartphones, unveiled a handset that folds open like a book to be a tablet at an event in San Francisco on Wednesday, becoming the first major manufacturer […]

Touchdown: Japan probe Hayabusa2 lands on distant asteroid

by Kyoko HASEGAWA Agence France-Presse TOKYO, Japan (AFP) — A Japanese probe sent to collect samples from an asteroid 300 million kilometers away for clues about the origin of life and the solar system landed successfully on Friday, scientists said. Hayabusa2 touched down briefly on the Ryugu asteroid, fired a bullet into the surface to puff up dust for collection and blasted back to its holding position, said officials from the Japan Aerospace Exploration Agency […]