Health & Science

Researchers say they might have figured out how Easter Islanders managed to move carved stones weighing many tons across the island and to the top of the famous statues known as moai.

Back in 2012, the research team came to the conclusion that the statues — some of which are as tall as a three-story-building — had been "walked" into place from the quarry.

It. Just. Doesn't. Stop.

Facebook is embroiled in a snafu that exposed users' private postings and made them public, the company admitted Thursday.

For four days, between May 18 to 22, Facebook tested a new feature that inadvertently switched the default settings for 14 million users from private to public allowing anyone on the Internet view status updates that were intended only for private audiences.

The story has a semi-biblical tone: A man and woman together in a garden come across a serpent. The serpent awakens them to their own mortality and their lives are changed forever.

But that's where the similarities end, because in this story, the man grabbed a shovel to decapitate the snake — a 4-foot-long Western diamondback rattlesnake — after it spooked his wife. And when he went to pick up the severed head, it sank its fangs into his flesh and released a near deadly dose of venom.

For the first time, scientists say they have clear evidence that the chemical building blocks of life exist on Mars.

What they can't say yet is whether there is, or ever was, life on the Red Planet.

Honeybees understand that "nothing" can be "something" that has numerical meaning, showing that they have a primitive grasp of the concept of zero.

That's according to a newly published study in Science, which shows that bees possess a mathematical ability once thought to exist only in dolphins, primates, birds and humans who are beyond the preschool years.

Suicide rates have increased in nearly every state over the past two decades, and half of the states have seen suicide rates go up more than 30 percent.

Suicide is a major public health issue, accounting for nearly 45,000 deaths in 2016 alone. That is why the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention in Atlanta decided to take a comprehensive look at suicides from 1999 to 2016.

The debate over the health risks of Juul, vaping and e-cigarettes is now spilling into the public square. In one of the most restrictive measures nationwide, San Francisco voters this week upheld by what looks to be a large majority — nearly 70 percent in a preliminary tally — a ban on the sale of flavored vaping products, as well as conventional menthol cigarettes.

Updated at 12:18 p.m. ET

Commerce Secretary Wilbur Ross on Thursday announced a deal with Chinese telecommunications company ZTE that includes a $1 billion fine — a move that may indicate progress in high-stakes trade talks between the U.S. and China.

On the third floor of a big Soviet-era apartment building in Kharkiv, Ukraine, the mother of one of the world's first babies created with DNA from three different people cracks open her door.

"Hello; my name is Tamara," she whispers, to avoid waking her son from his nap.

What do you go to Facebook for? Given how many of us use it — 68 percent of Americans, according to the Pew Research Center, with 74 percent of them visiting the site at least once a day — it's striking that, anecdotally at least, using the site evokes a sort of dissociative muscle memory, the ritual of dutifully giving posts from family and close-enough friends a thumbs-up.

Copyright 2018 NPR. To see more, visit http://www.npr.org/.

MARY LOUISE KELLY, HOST:

Artificial Intelligence. Real News?

Jun 6, 2018

Close your eyes and try to picture a journalist. You’re probably imagining someone holding a pencil and a skinny notebook, shouting questions at lawmakers. Or a reporter in front of a camera bringing you the latest from a scene? Or maybe you’re thinking of our show, with Joshua interviewing guests in our Washington, D.C. studio.

Well, what if all of that was replaced … by robots?

Passenger jets in the future will be lighter, more fuel-efficient and faster — partly because they won't have windows.

That's the prediction of Tim Clark, the president of Emirates airline. He says video screens that mimic windows through live camera feeds — as used in some Emirates first-class suites — are effective replacements for actual windows.

Copyright 2018 Fresh Air. To see more, visit Fresh Air.

DAVE DAVIES, HOST:

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