Supercomputer Aurora 21 will map the human brain, starting in 2021

Aurora 21 will help the US keep pace among the other nations who own the fastest supercomputers. Scientists plan on using it to map the connectome of the human brain.

Between your ears lies a miracle of nature, with more connections than our galaxy has stars. In the past, the idea of mapping the connectome—or the interconnected neuronal pathways of the brain (the white matter), was thought impossible. Now, a group of scientists are planning to do just that. How? They plan on using an oncoming supercomputer with tremendous power. Should they be successful, it could stand as one of the greatest achievements in the history of science. And that’s just one of the project's scientists at Argonne National Laboratory are planning, with Aurora 21 (A21).

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Sexbots are coming and experts say the results won’t be good

“Sexbots” are coming. They're supposed to fill in the gap for the career focused, help undermine sex trafficking and abuse, and even curb STI rates, but are these claims true?

Healthy sex is good for the body and our psychology, too. It boosts the immune system, lowers blood pressure, improves sleep, and eases stress and anxiety, giving us an overwhelming sense of well-being. In today’s hectic world, it can be hard to find a suitable partner. This is truer for millennials. A 2016 study, published in the journal Archives of Sexual Behavior, finds a surprising fact about the latest adult generation: they’re having less sex than the two previous ones, baby boomers and Gen Xers.

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We now know what a spiritual awakening looks like inside the brain

Neuroscientists are now beginning to unravel the neurobiological processes that take place inside the brain, during a spiritual awakening.

We often think of spirituality as something wholly outside of science. Though they seem diametrically opposed, could there ever be a marriage between the two? Might not science inform spirituality and vice-versa? One problem is, there’s a great range of opinions on what exactly spirituality is. It also varies across cultures and has been interpreted differently at different times in history. Generally speaking, a spiritual experience is one that transcends the self and connects the person to the universe in a profound and meaningful way. This is separate from religion which often includes dogma, religious texts, and some sort of institution.

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Heavy drinking increases the risk of Alzheimer’s, and now we know why

Drinking heavily over a long period of time has been known to cause early onset Alzheimer’s. But the forces behind this phenomenon have been a mystery, until now.

One in 14 people ages 65 and older develop Alzheimer’s. Experts say we are all at risk, although some of us are far more likely to develop it than others. Its origin is complex. The neurodegenerative disorder is thought to have both genetic and environmental components. New research shows that alcohol consumption is more weighty a cause than first thought, particularly heavy drinking on a consistent basis.

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