X: A history of failure

Plus: Organs
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The Futurist is your daily tech, cosmic, and science (both weird or otherwise) newsletter with articles and content curated just for you.

In today's edition:

// X

// Aliens

// Superconductor

// IRL Reardon Steel

Scientists create new material five times lighter and four times stronger than steel | SciTechDaily

"Materials possessing both strength and lightness have the potential to enhance everything from automobiles to body armor. But usually, the two qualities are mutually exclusive. However, researchers at the University of Connecticut, along with their collaborators, have now crafted an incredibly strong yet lightweight material. Surprisingly, they achieved this using two unexpected building blocks: DNA and glass."

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Scientists race to test claimed room-temperature superconductor | NewScientist

"When researchers claimed recently that they had created a material that perfectly conducts electricity – a superconductor – and that it does so at room temperature and pressure, many people were understandably skeptical. Such a finding would be transformative to many areas of science and technology. Now, labs around the world have kicked into action in a race to create and test the new material, called LK-99, to see if it really is what its creators claim."

If Aliens Actually Crashed Into Earth, Would We Know About It? | Inverse

"If aliens actually crashed here on Earth, what would happen?

Would the debris, and the aliens themselves, vanish behind a massive government cover-up, only to emerge as classified military technology years later? Or would altruistic civilian scientists work together to study the alien artifacts for the good of humanity?

These questions seem like fodder for very trope-y science fiction, but last week, a former U.S. Air Force intelligence officer told Congress last week, with a straight face, that an unnamed source had told him that the U.S. Department of Defense (or possibly its contractors) has debris and "nonhuman biologics" from a crashed UFO."

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Elon Musk wants a second chance to fail at X | The Verge

"There's some history here with Musk and X: when Peter Thiel defenestrated him from PayPal, it was because Musk wanted to rename PayPal. You are never going to guess what he wanted to change the name to.

Musk started the business X.com in 1999, which — reading it now — sounds like an early version of what Musk is trying to do with the artist formerly known as Twitter: electronic payments, checking accounts, stock trades, mutual funds. About the only thing it's missing is quote-tweet dunks. If you are thinking, 'This sounds kind of like WeChat,' you are right!"

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//Quiz: What is the smallest organ in the human body?

What is the smallest organ in the human body?

In researching this question, we were reminded just how many organs we have and it's a lot.