SpaceX is pushing back the target launch date for its first Mars mission

The company was aiming for 2018 but is now looking to 2020

Last year, SpaceX announced a bold plan to launch its Dragon spacecraft to Mars as soon as 2018 — in what would be the first ever private mission to the Red Planet. But now it looks like the company is pushing back the mission by a couple years. SpaceX president Gwynne Shotwell confirmed today that SpaceX is now targeting the year 2020 for the Mars trip, a move that will allow the company to better focus on its other ambitious projects.

We were focused on 2018, but we felt like we needed to put more resources and focus more heavily on our crew program and our Falcon Heavy program,” Shotwell said at a pre-launch press conference in Cape Canaveral, Florida. “So we’re looking more for the 2020 timeframe for that.”

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Trump says cyberattacks had “no effect” on election outcome after briefing

Four top intelligence officials briefed the president-elect Friday on a classified report on Russian hacking and interference in the election

 

Top intelligence officials briefed President-elect Donald Trump Friday on Russia’s hacking efforts to interfere with the U.S. election.

Following the briefing at Trump Tower in New York, Mr. Trump released a statement on what he called a “constructive meeting and conversation” saying that the cyberattacks had “no effect on the outcome of the election.”

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German Vice Chancellor Sigmar Gabriel calls for ban on Islamist mosques

Social Democrats leader and German Vice Chancellor Sigmar Gabriel has called for tougher measures against Islamist trends in Germany. His demands come just weeks after the “Islamic State”-claimed terror attack in Berlin.

German Vice Chancellor Sigmar Gabriel

In an interview with German weekly Der Spiegel, German Vice Chancellor Sigmar Gabriel said that “Salafist mosques must be banned, communities dissolved, and the preachers should be expelled as soon as possible.”

“Those who encourage violence do not enjoy the protection of religious freedom,” the leader of the Social Democrats (SPD) added, stressing that he had “zero tolerance” in combating Islamism.

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Vermont power company finds malware linked to Russian hackers

A malware signature linked to ‘Grizzly Steppe’ by the FBI and DHS was found on a single laptop.

Just a few days ago, the FBI and the Department of Homeland Security released a report detailing their assessment that Russian hackers were behind a series of attacks on US agencies and citizens. While the Obama administration issued sanctions, code linked to those hackers has been shared with other agencies, and on Friday, the Burlington Electric Department found malware with a matching signature on one of its laptops. The discovery raises more questions than it answers, but with recent reports of Russian hackers attacking the power grid in Ukraine, it obviously has raised alerts all over.

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Giant Avatar-style robot takes first steps in South Korea 

A giant South Korean-built manned robot that walks like a human but makes the ground shake under its weight has taken its first baby steps.

Designed by a veteran of science fiction blockbusters, the four-metre-tall (13-foot), 1.5 ton Method-2 towers over a room on the outskirts of Seoul.

An employee controls the arms of a manned biped walking robot "METHOD-2" during a demonstration in Gunpo, South Korea

The hulking human-like creation bears a striking resemblance to the military robots starring in the movie “Avatar”.

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Terror attack on Istanbul nightclub leaves 35 dead

Terror attack on Istanbul nightclub leaves 35 dead

An assailant dressed in a Santa Claus costume opened fire at a nightclub in Istanbul during New Year’s celebrations, killing at least 35 people and wounding several others, Istanbul governor Vasip Şahin said early Sunday.

A police officer was among the killed in the attack targeting the popular Reina nightclub in Istanbul’s Ortaköy district. More than one assailant may have been involved in the attack, sources said. Over 500 people were inside the club at the time.

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What’s their angle? Breaking down the Putin, Trump and Obama spy games

A tweet from the Russian government responding to US sanctions is shown.

President Barack Obama and his first secretary of state, Hillary Clinton, entered the White House in 2009 with visions of a “Russian reset.” But Obama will leave office next month in the midst of a shadowy Cold War-era fever dream, as Washington and Moscow are, once again, beset by accusations of diplomatic chicanery and outright espionage.

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Watch Tesla’s Autopilot Brake for a Crash Before It Even Happens

Since Tesla released Version 8.0 of its Autopilot system this summer, CEO Elon Musk has touted its lifesaving potential. Today, dashcam footage from the Netherlands showed just how powerful the new safety feature can be.

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In the video, the Tesla can be heard warning of a potential collision due an (unseen) braking vehicle one car ahead. The Autopilot then hits the brakes—while the middle vehicle zooms forward and causes a wreck.

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Obama announces sanctions for Russian election hacking

The Obama administration announced today that it will impose sanctions on Russian intelligence services and officials in response to the hacks of American political institutions during the election season.

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Carrie Fisher has died at the age of 60

Remembering a brilliant actress, author, and human

Carrie Fisher, best known for her role as Princess Leia Organa in the Star Wars series, has died at age 60. Fisher suffered a heart attack on a flight from London to Los Angeles on Friday, according to TMZ. An EMT on board administered CPR until the flight landed, and she was rushed to a nearby hospital. A family spokesperson confirmed her death this morning to People Magazine and said,She was loved by the world and she will be missed profoundly.”

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