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Time to evolve in to NASA astronaut and fly to Mars

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Want to become an astronaut and fly to red planet? NASA is now providing auspicious opportunities, accepting applications for future explorers and the final selection list will be announced in mid-2017.

Those chosen may fly on any of four different US spacecraft during their careers – the International Space Station (ISS), two commercial crew spacecraft currently in development by the US companies and NASA’s Orion deep-space exploration vehicle to Mars.

“NASA is on an ambitious journey to Mars and we’re looking for talented men and women from diverse backgrounds and every walk of life to help get us there,” said NASA administrator and former astronaut Charles Bolden in a statement.

“Today, we opened the application process for our next class of astronauts, extraordinary Americans who will take the next giant leap in exploration. This group will launch to space from US soil on American-made spacecraft and blaze the trail on our journey to the Red Planet,” he added.

NASA astronauts will again launch to the International Space Station (ISS) from Florida’s Space Coast on American-made commercial spacecraft — Boeing’s CST-100 Starliner and the SpaceX Crew Dragon.

These spacecraft will allow NASA to add a seventh crew member to each station mission, effectively doubling the amount of time astronauts will be able to devote to research in space, expanding scientific knowledge and demonstrating new technologies.

Astronauts also will lift off again from NASA’s Kennedy Space Center in Florida aboard the Orion spacecraft, launched on the agency’s Space Launch System rocket, to unprecedented missions in lunar orbit.

There, the space agency will learn more about conducting complex operations in a deep space environment before moving on to longer duration missions as it progresses on its journey to Mars.

To help accomplish this work, NASA will select qualified astronaut candidates from a diverse pool of US citizens with a wide variety of backgrounds, including engineers, scientists and physicians.

Astronaut candidates must have a bachelor’s degree from an accredited institution in engineering, biological science, physical science, computer science or mathematics. An advanced degree is desirable.

Candidates also must have at least three years of related, progressively responsible professional experience, or at least 1,000 hours of pilot-in-command time in jet aircraft.

Astronaut candidates must pass the NASA long-duration astronaut physical.

The astronaut candidate application website now is live and accepting submissions till February 18.

wefornews bureau

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Twitter acts on inactive accounts, new verification soon

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Micro-blogging platform Twitter has started removing blue verification badges from inactive and incomplete accounts and will begin the new verification process for its users in few weeks.

Twitter, which paused its public verification process or that elusive Blue Badge three years ago, in November announced to relaunch verification, including a new public application process, in early 2021.

“Last call! As part of our new verification policy, we’ll remove verification badges from inactive and incomplete accounts,” Twitter Safety said in a tweet.

The company is reading out directly to users who have issues with their accounts.

“We’ve reached out directly to those who need to take action to stay verified,” it added.

Twitter had said it would relaunch verification, including a new public application process, in early 2021.

Verified accounts on Twitter will have a blue check next to the display name throughout the app.

“When we relaunch the public application process in early 2021, there will be a link to the application in the Twitter apps and on twitter.com”.

Over three years ago, the platform paused the public verification programme after hearing feedback that it felt arbitrary and confusing to many people.

A year later, the company deprioritised this work further to focus on protecting the integrity of the public conversation around critical moments like the 2020 US election.

The company has identified six types of accounts in its draft policy as Notable Accounts — government; companies, brands and non-profit organisations; news; entertainment; sports and activists/organisers and other influential individuals.

According to the proposed policy, “the blue verified badge on Twitter lets people know that an account of public interest is authentic. To receive the blue badge, your account must be notable and active.”

Twitter had admitted that there are many verified accounts on its platform that should not be there.

The new verification policy is a starting point, and “we intend to expand the categories and criteria for verification significantly over the next year”.

The draft verification policy is available in English, Hindi, Arabic, Spanish, Portuguese, and Japanese.

“We are also working with local non-governmental organisations and our Trust and Safety Council to ensure as many perspectives are represented as possible,” Twitter said.

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Twitter locks account of Chinese Embassy in US over Uyghur tweet

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Twitter has locked the official account of China’s Embassy in the US over a controversial post that referred to Muslim Uyghur women as “baby-making machines” prior to government intervention.

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Microsoft brings Surface Laptop Go to India

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Microsoft on Thursday announced the Surface Laptop Go will be available in India from January 22 via commercial authorised resellers, authorised retail and online partners at a starting price of Rs 63,499.

According to the company, the Surface Laptop Go extends the Surface line-up by delivering standout design along with the features most loved by our Surface Laptop customers at a more affordable price.

“With the new Surface Laptop Go, we want to give every person in the household or organisation a laptop that’s not just something you need to use, but something you want to use. The Surface Laptop Go is our lightest and most affordable Surface laptop yet that offers the perfect balance of performance, battery life and style,” Rajiv Sodhi, Chief Operating Officer, Microsoft said in a statement.

The Surface Laptop Go runs on Windows 10 Home in S mode. It features a 12.45-inch PixelSense Display with 3:2 aspect ratio and 1,536×1,024 pixels resolution.

Under the hood, the Surface Laptop Go is powered by 10th-Gen Intel Core i5-1035G1 processor and comes with Intel UHD graphics.

It can be equipped with 4GB, 8GB, or 16GB of LPDDR4x RAM. The base model carries 64GB of eMMC storage but comes with options for 128GB and 256GB SSDs.

Connectivity options include a USB Type-C port, a USB Type-A port, a 3.5mm headphone hack, Wi-Fi 6: 802.11ax, and Bluetooth 5.0.

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