Can you turn CO2 on Mars into sugar? NASA will give $1 million to the person who can.

Calling all enterprising scientists who are dying to retire ... or just put some cool cash into the bank.

Looking to turn carbon from the planet Mars into useful compounds such as sugar, NASA is offering up to a cool $1 million to anyone who can solve how to accomplish such a process.

The conundrum is that spacecraft heading to the planet—or any other, for that matter—will have limited space to bring equipment and materials to accomplish something like creating sugar from carbon dioxide, which is quite abundant on Mars.

An employee poses with a pipe used to carry liquid CO2 on September 08, 2008 at the 'Schwarze Pumpe' ('Black Pump') power station run by Europe's biggest power company Vattenfall in Werder near Berlin. (Photo credit MICHAEL URBAN/AFP/Getty Images)

Why sugar, though?

Because carbon and oxygen combine to make sugar—and glucose from sugar is the easiest for, say, microbe-milking bioreactors to metabolize, and therefore, the most efficient. 

LinkedIn meets Tinder in this mindful networking app

Swipe right to make the connections that could change your career.

Getty Images
Swipe right. Match. Meet over coffee or set up a call.

No, we aren't talking about Tinder. Introducing Shapr, a free app that helps people with synergistic professional goals and skill sets easily meet and collaborate.

Keep reading Show less

4 reasons Martin Luther King, Jr. fought for universal basic income

In his final years, Martin Luther King, Jr. become increasingly focused on the problem of poverty in America.

(Photo by J. Wilds/Keystone/Getty Images)
Politics & Current Affairs
  • Despite being widely known for his leadership role in the American civil rights movement, Martin Luther King, Jr. also played a central role in organizing the Poor People's Campaign of 1968.
  • The campaign was one of the first to demand a guaranteed income for all poor families in America.
  • Today, the idea of a universal basic income is increasingly popular, and King's arguments in support of the policy still make a good case some 50 years later.
Keep reading Show less

Why avoiding logical fallacies is an everyday superpower

10 of the most sandbagging, red-herring, and effective logical fallacies.

Photo credit: Miguel Henriques on Unsplash
Personal Growth
  • Many an otherwise-worthwhile argument has been derailed by logical fallacies.
  • Sometimes these fallacies are deliberate tricks, and sometimes just bad reasoning.
  • Avoiding these traps makes disgreeing so much better.
Keep reading Show less
  • Facebook and Google began as companies with supposedly noble purposes.
  • Creating a more connected world and indexing the world's information: what could be better than that?
  • But pressure to return value to shareholders came at the expense of their own users.
Keep reading Show less