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Since 1978, when the first IVF baby was born, the rise of “designer babies” was predicted. In the 40 years since, we have mapped the human genome and have been using this knowledge to screen for various genetic diseases, culminating in this week’s announcement by Chinese scientist He Jiankui that the first twins with their DNA genetically edited to make them resistant to HIV infection, have been born.

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In a world where scientific advancements like stem cell therapies and the Hadron Collider have become so-called water cooler conversations, it seems that very few scientific mysteries remain. However, the tiny island of Mayotte, situated between the northern tip of Madagascar and Malawi, provided the world’s seismologists with a mystery that so far only has a theoretical solution.

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Science fiction is full of stories about androids and robots who help enable space travel for humans. The first step has just been taken to make this a reality, with the world’s first artificial intelligence (AI)-enabled astronaut assistant making its debut aboard the International Space Station (ISS).

With the festive season around the corner, there has already been a marked increase in both online and physical scams designed to rob people of their money. The South African Banking Risk Information Centre (Sabric) has warned people to exercise increased caution this holiday season due to the prevalence of scams and crime, including ATM fraud, phishing, and various social engineering attacks.

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South Africa’s Cradle of Humankind boasts some of the oldest hominid fossils found in the world, as does east Africa, leading scientists to believe that Africa was the original wellspring of humanity. Research conducted by Quentin Atkinson, a cultural anthropologist at Auckland University in New Zealand, also promotes this theory, finding that the world’s 6000 modern languages can be traced back to a single “mother tongue”, an ancestral language spoken in Africa 50 000 to 70 000 years ago.

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These days, we cannot imagine our lives without our smartphones. Research shows that 93% of South Africans now have access to smartphones, joining The Netherlands, Norway, Ireland and Luxembourg on the short list of countries that have surpassed the 90% threshold.

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Since the discovery of penicillin, medicine has used the latest technologies available at the time to help cure diseases and ailments. Today, stem cell research promises to fundamentally change how treatments are designed and administered, but we are still years away from stem cell therapies becoming common.

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The world has slowly become aware of the dangers of plastics to the environment, with recycling initiatives becoming more prevalent over the last decade. While we have all seen the pictures of clogged landfills and birds choking on plastic, human beings have been unaware of the detrimental effect these polymers have been having on us.

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China is set to launch an artificial moon into space in 2020 with the aim to replace street lights. Wu Chunfeng, chairman of space contractor Chengdu Aerospace Science and Technology Microelectronics System Research Institute Co (CASC) has told media that the country is two years away from sending a lighting satellite to space, and that the satellite will complement the light of the moon at night.

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South Africa has been in the international news a great deal lately, with even President Donald Trump publicly weighing in on the land redistribution question. One woman has put the country back in the limelight across the globe for a completely different – and much brighter – reason.

Magazines

African Fusion

AfricanFusionAfrican Fusion, the official publication of the Southern African Institute of Welding (SAIW), aims to provide up-to-date insight into welding technology and the welding industry.

Capital Equipment News

Capital Equipment News is dedicated to the application of equipment and modes of transport that are used in the mining, construction, quarrying, and transport industries.

Construction World

ConstructionWorldConstruction World was first published in 1982 and has grown to become a leader in its field, offering a unique mix of editorial coverage to satisfy the diverse needs of its readers.

Electricity + Control

ElectricityandControlE + C publishes innovative, technical articles that provide solutions to engineering challenges in measurement, automation, control, and energy management.

Lighting in Design

LightingandDesignLighting in Design is a glossy, upmarket publication aimed at lighting professionals. It is the only B2B magazine in SA that is dedicated solely to the subject of lighting.

MechChem Africa

MechChemJanuary2017cover MechChem Africa supports African engineering and technical managers across the full spectrum of chemical and mechanical disciplines.

Modern Mining

ModernMiningEstablished in 2005, Modern Mining is one of SA's leading monthly mining magazines, noted for the quality and accuracy of its writing and the breadth of its coverage.

Modern Quarrying

ModernQuarryingModern Quarrying is firmly entrenched as a leading industry-specific magazine. It focuses on promoting the science and practice of quarrying and processing in southern Africa.

Sparks Electrical News

SparksElectricalNewsReadable and informative, Sparks Electrical News is the newspaper for those involved in installing and maintaining electrical supplies and equipment.

 
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