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Iranian teacher builds robot to teach prayer

Source : AP / 26 Feb 2014

An Iranian schoolteacher has innovated an amusing way of encouraging young children to say their daily prayers — robotics.

Akbar Rezaie, 27, attended private robotics classes and learned to develop and assemble customized humanoid robots.

He teaches the Qur’an to boys and girls at Alborz elementary school in the town of Varamin, 35 kilometers (20 miles) southeast of Tehran.


Pakistan opens the tap on hydropower projects

Source : Trust.org / 19 Feb 2014

Faced with a chronic power shortage that is stymieing economic growth, Pakistan has announced plans to tap some of the enormous potential for hydropower in the country’s north.

The government aims to add 13,000 megawatts (MW) of electricity to the national grid system through a series of hydro projects ranging in size from 10 to 1,000 MW, according to officials in the federal water and power ministry. This will represent a nearly eightfold increase in hydro capacity.


Nazis considered malaria-infected mosquitoes as weapon

Source : World Bulletin / 17 Feb 2014

Researchers have found out that Nazi scientists at the Dachau concentration camp were looking into ways on how to use malaria-infected mosquitoes as a method of biological warfare during World War II.

Files from the archives at the Entomological Institute were examined by Dr Klaus Reinhardt of Tuebingen University said that the Nazis were researching ways to keep mosquitoes alive outside of their natural environment, claiming that they may have been considering dropping them on enemy targets.


Robots to replace human laborers ‘in 10 years’

Source : Al Arabiya / 12 Feb 2014

Artificial intelligence and robots are expected to replace humans in the next 10 years, an expert revealed at the United Arab Emirates Government Summit on Tuesday.

“The world is no longer changing every 100 years,” said Dr. Peter Diamandis, Co-Founder of Singularity University and Founder of the X-Prize.


Fires create a hazy future for Indonesia's carbon emissions targets

Source : Trust.org / 11 Feb 2014

Forest fires that ravaged parts of Indonesia in mid-2013 and caused regional tensions have made it harder for the government to meet its goals for reducing carbon emissions, according to a report by climate scientists – and experts and activists are warning that further fires are likely without better government regulation of land clearance in forest and peatland areas.


Turkey´s fifth satellite to be launched

Source : World Bulletin / 10 Feb 2014

Turkey's TURKSAT 4A Communication Satellite - Turkey´s fifth satallite - will be launched with a Proton rocket on 15 February 2014 from Baykonur Space Centre in Kazakhstan.

The Turksat 4A telecommunication satellite was produced jointly with Turkish and Japanese engineers.


Kazakhstan to launch three satellites into space

Source : AA / 07 Feb 2014

Kazakh National Space Agency (KazCosmos) announced on Thursday that it would launch three satellites into space in 2014.

One of the devices sent to space is for telecommunication to allow transmission to remote regions, whereas the other two will be remote sensing satellites, according to a statement by KazCosmos.


2013 sixth-hottest year: UN

Source : AFP / 06 Feb 2014

Last year tied for the sixth-hottest on record, confirming that Earth’s climate system is in the grip of warming that will affect generations to come, the UN’s weather agency said Wednesday.

“This is confirmation of the trend of global warming of the planet,” World Meteorological Organization (WMO) chief Michel Jarraud told AFP.


Starving hives: Pesticides cause bees to collect 57 percent less pollen, study says

Source : RT / 3 Feb 2014

Bees exposed to "field-realistic" doses of insecticides gather less than a half the pollen that they normally do, dooming their young to starvation, UK researches have said. While some scientists hailed the findings, pesticide makers remained unimpressed

In a spin-off of their earlier study, a team of British scientists have revealed how the neurotoxic chemicals contained in agricultural neonicotinoids affect the very basic function of the honeybees – the gathering of pollen, or flower nectar.


Pakistan to build six nuclear power plants

Source : IINA / 30 Nov 2013

Pakistan Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif announced Tuesday that his country will build six civil nuclear power plants.

Speaking at a function, Coastal Power Project K-II and K-III in Karachi, Sharif said the country’s Atomic Energy Commission has identified six sites where civil nuclear power plants could be built, The News International reported. According to the prime minister, Pakistan would produce 40,000 MW of power from nuclear plants till 2050 and the government’s priority was to start work on power projects to overcome the energy shortage.


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