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Virgin Galactic’s New Flight Test to Soar Closer to Edge of Space

Virgin Galactic is preparing for a new flight test Thursday that aims to fly higher and faster than before toward the edge of space.

The U.S. company run by British tycoon Richard Branson is aiming to be the first to take tourists on brief trips into microgravity.

Virgin Galactic’s fourth flight test on the VSS Unity is scheduled for Thursday, weather permitting.

The flight will take off from a spaceport in Mojave, California.

The vessel does not launch from Earth but is carried to a higher altitude — about nine miles (15 kilometers) high — attached to an airplane.

Then, two pilots on the VSS Unity fire the engines toward the frontier of space, typically defined as an altitude of 62 miles (100 kilometers).

In July, after burning the rocket motor for 42 seconds, the VSS Unity reached a height of 32 miles, a part of the atmosphere called the mesosphere.

Commercial airplanes typically fly at an altitude of about six miles.

The VSS Unity reached a top speed of over 1,530 miles per hour, or beyond Mach 2.

“Overall the goal of this flight is to fly higher and faster than previous flights,” said a statement from Virgin Galactic.

“If all goes to plan our pilots will experience an extended period of microgravity as VSS Unity coasts to apogee, although — being pilots — they will remain securely strapped in throughout.”

Another U.S. rocket company, Blue Origin, founded by Amazon CEO Jeff Bezos, is also racing to be the first to send tourists to space, but using a small rocket to get there.

Virgin’s first flight date has been pushed back multiple times, following a test flight accident that killed a co-pilot in 2014.

Branson told CNN in November he hoped to send people to space “before Christmas.”

More than 600 clients have already paid $250,000 for a ticket.

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iDnipro

Virgin Galactic’s New Flight Test to Soar Closer to Edge of Space

Virgin Galactic is preparing for a new flight test Thursday that aims to fly higher and faster than before toward the edge of space.

The U.S. company run by British tycoon Richard Branson is aiming to be the first to take tourists on brief trips into microgravity.

Virgin Galactic’s fourth flight test on the VSS Unity is scheduled for Thursday, weather permitting.

The flight will take off from a spaceport in Mojave, California.

The vessel does not launch from Earth but is carried to a higher altitude — about nine miles (15 kilometers) high — attached to an airplane.

Then, two pilots on the VSS Unity fire the engines toward the frontier of space, typically defined as an altitude of 62 miles (100 kilometers).

In July, after burning the rocket motor for 42 seconds, the VSS Unity reached a height of 32 miles, a part of the atmosphere called the mesosphere.

Commercial airplanes typically fly at an altitude of about six miles.

The VSS Unity reached a top speed of over 1,530 miles per hour, or beyond Mach 2.

“Overall the goal of this flight is to fly higher and faster than previous flights,” said a statement from Virgin Galactic.

“If all goes to plan our pilots will experience an extended period of microgravity as VSS Unity coasts to apogee, although — being pilots — they will remain securely strapped in throughout.”

Another U.S. rocket company, Blue Origin, founded by Amazon CEO Jeff Bezos, is also racing to be the first to send tourists to space, but using a small rocket to get there.

Virgin’s first flight date has been pushed back multiple times, following a test flight accident that killed a co-pilot in 2014.

Branson told CNN in November he hoped to send people to space “before Christmas.”

More than 600 clients have already paid $250,000 for a ticket.

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iDnipro

OMG: California Regulators Consider Charge on Text Messaging

California regulators are considering a plan to charge a fee for text messaging on mobile phones to help support programs that make phone service accessible to the poor.

The Mercury News reports Wednesday that the proposal is scheduled for a vote next month by the state Public Utilities Commission.

The wireless industry and business groups have been working to defeat the plan.

Jim Wunderman of the Bay Area Council, a business-sponsored advocacy group, says it would essentially put a tax on conversations.

The newspaper says it’s unclear how much money individual consumers would be asked to pay their wireless carrier for texting services under the proposal. But it likely would be billed as a flat surcharge — not a fee per text.

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iDnipro

OMG: California Regulators Consider Charge on Text Messaging

California regulators are considering a plan to charge a fee for text messaging on mobile phones to help support programs that make phone service accessible to the poor.

The Mercury News reports Wednesday that the proposal is scheduled for a vote next month by the state Public Utilities Commission.

The wireless industry and business groups have been working to defeat the plan.

Jim Wunderman of the Bay Area Council, a business-sponsored advocacy group, says it would essentially put a tax on conversations.

The newspaper says it’s unclear how much money individual consumers would be asked to pay their wireless carrier for texting services under the proposal. But it likely would be billed as a flat surcharge — not a fee per text.

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iDnipro

Sports, Deaths Among 2018’s Top Google Searches

Sports, disaster and death were among the top searches on Google last year.

Each December, the technology company releases it’s top trending searches of the year. Topics that drew the interest of Americans included the World Cup, Hurricane Florence and three people who died in 2018 — rapper Mac Miller, designer Kate Spade and TV host and author Anthony Bourdain.

Google does not come up with its lists based on the number of total searches. Instead, the company looks at the search terms that enjoyed the highest spike compared to the previous year.

“Black Panther” topped the list of most searched movies, while rising stars in the Democratic party dominated the list of most searched politicians.

Here are the Top 10:

1. World Cup

2. Hurricane Florence

3. Mac Miller

4. Kate Spade

5. Anthony Bourdain

6. Black Panther

7. Mega Millions Results

8. Stan Lee

9. Demi Lovato

10. Election Results

Other categories include:

News

1. World Cup

2. Hurricane Florence

3. Mega Millions

4. Election Results

5. Hurricane Michael

People

1. Demi Lovato

2. Meghan Markle

3. Brett Kavanaugh

4. Logan Paul

5. Khloe Kardashian

Politicians

1. Stacey Abrams

2. Beto O’Rourke

3. Ted Cruz

4. Andrew Gillum

5. Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez

Movies

1. Black Panther

2. Incredibles 2

3. Deadpool 2

4. Avengers: Infinity War

5. A Quiet Place

All of the 2018 Google top trending search lists can be found here.

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iDnipro

Sports, Deaths Among 2018’s Top Google Searches

Sports, disaster and death were among the top searches on Google last year.

Each December, the technology company releases it’s top trending searches of the year. Topics that drew the interest of Americans included the World Cup, Hurricane Florence and three people who died in 2018 — rapper Mac Miller, designer Kate Spade and TV host and author Anthony Bourdain.

Google does not come up with its lists based on the number of total searches. Instead, the company looks at the search terms that enjoyed the highest spike compared to the previous year.

“Black Panther” topped the list of most searched movies, while rising stars in the Democratic party dominated the list of most searched politicians.

Here are the Top 10:

1. World Cup

2. Hurricane Florence

3. Mac Miller

4. Kate Spade

5. Anthony Bourdain

6. Black Panther

7. Mega Millions Results

8. Stan Lee

9. Demi Lovato

10. Election Results

Other categories include:

News

1. World Cup

2. Hurricane Florence

3. Mega Millions

4. Election Results

5. Hurricane Michael

People

1. Demi Lovato

2. Meghan Markle

3. Brett Kavanaugh

4. Logan Paul

5. Khloe Kardashian

Politicians

1. Stacey Abrams

2. Beto O’Rourke

3. Ted Cruz

4. Andrew Gillum

5. Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez

Movies

1. Black Panther

2. Incredibles 2

3. Deadpool 2

4. Avengers: Infinity War

5. A Quiet Place

All of the 2018 Google top trending search lists can be found here.

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iDnipro

Twitter CEO Acknowledges Suffering of Myanmar’s Rohingya Muslims

Twitter chief executive officer Jack Dorsey is under fire for failing to address the humanitarian crisis involving the Rohingya Muslims during his recent meditation retreat in Myanmar.

Dorsey published a thread on his Twitter page Sunday praising Myanmar’s people as “full of joy,” and heaping equal praise on the nation’s cuisine.

Critics angrily accused Dorsey of ignoring the plight of more than 700,000 Rohingyas who fled from northern Rakhine state into neighboring Bangladesh to avoid a scorched earth campaign launched by the military in response to a series of attacks by Rohingya militants on security outposts.

A special United Nations fact-finding mission said the military acted “with genocidal intent” against the Rohingyas, based on interviews with hundreds of Rohingyas, who revealed numerous atrocities, including gang rapes, the torching of entire villages and extrajudicial killings.

Dorsey responded Wednesday that he was “aware of the human rights atrocities and suffering in Myanmar,” and that he did not “intend to diminish them by not raising the issue.” But he conceded that he “could have acknowledged that I don’t know enough and need to learn more.”

Critics have also pointed the finger at Twitter for allowing virulent anti-Rohingya hate speech onto the site during the height of the crackdown. Dorsey said people can use Twitter “to share news and information about events in Myanmar, as well as to bear witness to the plight of the Rohingya and other peoples and communities.”

This is not the first time the Twitter boss has gotten into hot water during his overseas travels. Dorsey caused a stir in India last month when a photograph emerged of him holding a poster that read “Smash Brahminical patriarchy,” a reference to India’s highest Hindu caste.

 

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iDnipro

Twitter CEO Acknowledges Suffering of Myanmar’s Rohingya Muslims

Twitter chief executive officer Jack Dorsey is under fire for failing to address the humanitarian crisis involving the Rohingya Muslims during his recent meditation retreat in Myanmar.

Dorsey published a thread on his Twitter page Sunday praising Myanmar’s people as “full of joy,” and heaping equal praise on the nation’s cuisine.

Critics angrily accused Dorsey of ignoring the plight of more than 700,000 Rohingyas who fled from northern Rakhine state into neighboring Bangladesh to avoid a scorched earth campaign launched by the military in response to a series of attacks by Rohingya militants on security outposts.

A special United Nations fact-finding mission said the military acted “with genocidal intent” against the Rohingyas, based on interviews with hundreds of Rohingyas, who revealed numerous atrocities, including gang rapes, the torching of entire villages and extrajudicial killings.

Dorsey responded Wednesday that he was “aware of the human rights atrocities and suffering in Myanmar,” and that he did not “intend to diminish them by not raising the issue.” But he conceded that he “could have acknowledged that I don’t know enough and need to learn more.”

Critics have also pointed the finger at Twitter for allowing virulent anti-Rohingya hate speech onto the site during the height of the crackdown. Dorsey said people can use Twitter “to share news and information about events in Myanmar, as well as to bear witness to the plight of the Rohingya and other peoples and communities.”

This is not the first time the Twitter boss has gotten into hot water during his overseas travels. Dorsey caused a stir in India last month when a photograph emerged of him holding a poster that read “Smash Brahminical patriarchy,” a reference to India’s highest Hindu caste.

 

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