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SFMTA 'Never Considered' Paying Ransom to Hackers

November 29, 2016 It’s never a good sign when your transit agency’s work terminals start saying, “You Hacked,ALL Data Encrypted,Contact For Key.” And indeed news surfaced this weekend that the San Francisco Municipal Transportation Agency’s computer network had been infected with ransomware, with hackers demanding 100 bitcoins (about $73,100) to decrypt locked files....

Watch the Grim, Ongoing Loss of the Arctic's Historical Ice

November 4, 2016 The Arctic’s sea ice has been diminishing so much there’s a good likelihood in future summers the region will be completely liquid, allowing the ocean to absorb more sunlight and accelerate global warming. While 2016 hasn’t been the worst year, it’s certainly close to the record lowest-extent for sea ice...

NASA: The Earth Gets Scorched With Back-to-Back Hottest Months

September 15, 2016 The planet’s transformation into an oven in which you could steam a ham draws closer with news that August tied for the warmest month in known history. The global average temperature was 0.98 degrees Celsius above the mean temperature for August, and 0.16 degrees warmer than the last record-hot August...

What Peak Hurricane Season Looks Like From the Space Station

September 2, 2016 The Atlantic and Pacific are in their peak hurricane seasons, windows within the normal seasons with high chances of frequent, dangerous storms. And true to history, there’s great violence in the waters, as seen in these time-lapse shotsfrom the International Space Station. The footage first shows Hurricane Lester on its...

San Francisco Begs People Not to Assault Muni Drivers

September 1, 2016 If you had been aboard San Francisco’s inbound Muni 47 bus at 4 p.m. last Tuesday, you would’ve seen a man smash the driver in the head with a skateboard, causing havoc among the passengers and ultimately sending the bleeding victim to the hospital. The incident was the latest in...

San Francisco Wants You to Design Its Future Transit System

August 19, 2016 A subway station near the buffalo paddock in Golden Gate Park, a tunnel to Alcatraz Island—feasible or not, you can have San Francisco review your ideas for transit expansion, thanks to a tool that lets you design and submit your “dream” subway system. The “Subway Vision” map plots existing major...

NASA: July 2016 Was the Hottest Month in Recorded History

August 17, 2016 There might’ve been a time, back in the mists of prehistory, when the oceans boiled and the ground was hot enough to render bacon. But in the modern era, it’s safe to say we’re living in the warmest period known to humankind, with July 2016 going down as the hottest...

A Space-Station View of 2016's Perseid Meteor Shower

August 16, 2016 Consider yourself lucky if you looked up to catch this year’s extremely active Persied meteors—or luckier still, if you looked down to see them tracing fiery streaks over a darkened planet. Crew on the International Space Station could do just that last week when the shower hit its peak. This...

Seattle to Roll Out a 'Pac-Man'-Themed Pavement Maze

July 21, 2016 Rejoice, people who cosplay as the planet’s favorite insatiable mouth-orb: Seattle is planning a ‘Pac-Man’-themed “pavement maze,” where you can pretend to hunt ghosts and inhale pellets to your heart’s content. The city’s Department of Transportation, as part of its Pavement to Parks initiative, held a recent community vote about...

NOAA: The Earth Has Endured 14 Straight Months of Record-Breaking Heat

July 20, 2016 The lower part of South America, the Beijing region, and a little patch of far-east Russia: These were the landmasses that experienced abnormally cool temperatures in June. The vast majority of the Earth’s surface, however, was either warmer than usual or scalding with record-breaking heat, according to NOAA’s latest global...

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