About – NOSTER & Science Microbiome Prize

Prize Details
• About
• How to Enter
• Winners
• Latest Press Release
About the Prize
No one walks alone. Every human is enveloped by and contains trillions of microorganisms. The past decade’s research has revealed the essential nature of the relationships with these other organisms for healthy development and adult life. Research on the microbiome has blossomed thanks to technological advances in genomics and bioinformatics. Already, many surprising discoveries have been made about the fundamental role the microbiota play in inflammation, cancer, obesity and many other chronic non-communicable diseases that assail humans. The groundwork has been laid for a shift of gear from mapping microbial associations with health and disease states to working out the mechanistic details and the dynamics of the interactions between hosts and their microbiota. This growing field promises to translate fundamental discoveries and help answer questions about healthy human development, metabolism, and immunity.
The NOSTER Science Microbiome Prize has been established to reward innovative research by young investigators working on the functional attributes of the microbiota of any organism that has potential to contribute to our understanding of human or veterinary health and disease or to guide therapeutic interventions.
Grand Prize winner receives:
Each Grand Prize winner will be awarded a cash prize in the amount of US$25,000 and travel and accommodation for the prize ceremony.
The Grand Prize winner will also receive a free five (5) year digital subscription to Science, and will have their winning essay published in Science (print and online).
Runner(s) Up receives:
Each Runner up will receive an award plaque and travel and accommodation for the prize ceremony.
The Runner(s) Up will also receive a free one (1) year digital subscription to Science, and will have their winning essay published in Scienceonline. Maximum number of Runners Up is 2.
About Science/AAAS
The American Association for the Advancement of Science (AAAS) is the world’s largest general scientific society and publisher of the journal Science, as well as Science Translational Medicine; Science Signaling; a digital, open-access journal, Science Advances; Science Immunology; and Science Robotics. AAAS was founded in 1848 and includes more than 250 affiliated societies and academies of science, serving 10 million individuals. Science has the largest paid circulation of any peer-reviewed general science journal in the world. The nonprofit AAAS is open to all and fulfills its mission to “advance science and serve society” through initiatives in science policy, international programs, science education, public engagement and more.
Noster was incorporated on May 15, 2020, in Kyoto, Japan, specializing in the research and development of gut microbiome–based treatments with the vision of “connecting life and gut microbiome.” The company’s mission is to elucidate the functions of over 1,000 species of human gut microorganisms—numbering over 100 trillion—that exist symbiotically with humans, and to contribute to scientific advances in microbiotics to improve the health of people worldwide. Recent research shows that immune and digestive diseases as well as certain cancers are linked to the gut microbiome, making it an obvious target for the development of new biotherapy treatments based on manipulating the abundance and biology of gut microorganisms. To solidify its future, Noster is exploiting its deep understanding of the gut microbiome by building a unique library of intestinal microbes and their metabolites, referred to as “postbiotics.” Using this library, company scientists are working passionately to realize breakthroughs in drug discovery and to develop innovative therapeutic treatments targeting the gut microbiome. To learn more about NOSTER, click here.

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About – Travelers’ Choice Best of the Best

2020 Award Winners










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About – 35 Extraordinary Contemporary House Design Ideas – Engineering Discoveries

People who choose to make contemporary-style homes are only limited by their imagination in determining what floor plans to 2use for their way of life and family needs. A contemporary style house is believed to be rather progressive in its design. Houses can be very adorable and fun to live, if well decorated. In here check out 35 extraordinary contemporary house design ideas.

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What are the 4 Vs of Big Data?

How do you know if the data you have is considered big data? There are generally four characteristics that must be part of a dataset to qualify it as big data—volume, velocity, variety and veracity. Value is a fifth characteristic that is also important for big data to be useful to an organization.
Our world has become datafied. From data that shows activity such as our Google searches and online shopping habits to our communication and conversations through text, smartphones and virtual assistants, and all the pictures and videos we take to the sensor data collected by internet-of-things devices and more, there are 2.5 quintillion bytes of data created each day. The better companies and organizations manage and secure this data, the more successful they are likely to be. How do you know if the data you have has the characteristics that qualify it as “big”? Most people determine data is “big” if it has the four Vs—volume, velocity, variety and veracity. But in order for data to be useful to an organization, it must create value—a critical fifth characteristic of big data that can’t be overlooked.
The first V of big data is all about the amount of data—the volume. Today, every single minute we create the same amount of data that was created from the beginning of time until the year 2000. We now use the terms terabytes and petabytes to discuss the size of data that needs to be processed. The quantity of data is certainly an important aspect of making it be classified as big data. As a result of the amount of data we deal with daily, new technologies and strategies such as multitiered storage media have been developed to securely collect, analyze and store it properly.
Velocity, the second V of big data, is all about the speed new data is generated and moves around. When you send a text, check out your social media feed and react to posts on Facebook, Instagram or Twitter or make a credit card purchase, these acts create data that need to be processed instantaneously. Compound these activities by all the people in the world doing the same and more and you can start to see how velocity is a key attribute of big data.
Today, data is generally one of three types: unstructured, semi-structured and structured. The algorithms required to process the variety of data generated varies based on the type of data to be processed. In the past, data was nicely structured—think Excel spreadsheets or other relational databases. A key characteristic of big data is that it not only is structured data but also includes text, images, videos, voice files and other unstructured data that doesn’t fit easily into the framework of a spreadsheet. Unstructured data isn’t bound by rules like structured data is. Again, this variety has helped put the “big” in data. We are able to use technology to make sense of unstructured data today in a way that wasn’t possible in the past. This ability has opened up a tremendous amount of data that have previously not been accessible or useful.
The veracity of big data denotes the trustworthiness of the data. Is the data accurate and high-quality? When talking about big data that comes from a variety of sources, it’s important to understand the chain of custody, metadata and the context when the data was collected to be able to glean accurate insights. The higher the veracity of the data equates to the data’s importance to analyze and contribute to meaningful results for an organization.
While this article is about the 4 Vs of data, there is actually an important fifth element we must consider when it comes to big data. This is the need to turn our data into value. In fact, organizations that have not created a data strategy to yield insights and to drive data-driven decision-making are going to fall behind competitors. Big data that’s analyzed effectively can provide important understanding of customers and their behaviors and desires, how to optimize business processes and operations and to improve a nearly endless amount of applications. Whether you use data to create a new product or service or to understand a way to cut costs, it is incredibly important that big data creates value. This value is why organizations of every size must have a data strategy in place in order to ensure the data needed to achieve the business objectives they adopted are being collected and analyzed.
Where to go from here
If you would like to know more about technology during COVID-19, check out my articles on:
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Sentinel-6 Michael Freilich Satellite Launch – Virtual NASA

Earth is changing and we’re sending the Sentinel-6 Michael Freilich satellite to space to help us monitor those changes.
The Sentinel-6 Michael Freilich mission is a U.S.- European cooperative effort designed to carry the record of global sea level rise—a significant effect of climate change—into its fourth decade.
We’re in final preparations for launch as the satellite and its SpaceX Falcon 9 rocket get ready for liftoff from Vandenberg Air Force Base in Central California on November 10, 2020.
Sentinel-6 Michael Freilich is named in honor of the former director of NASA’s Earth Science Division, who was instrumental in advancing ocean altimetry. It follows the most recent U.S.-European sea level observation satellite, Jason-3, which launched in 2016 and currently is providing high-precision and timely observations of the topography of the global ocean.
While we cannot invite the public to a face-to-face NASA Social event due to COVID-19 restrictions, we are excited to have you participate virtually in #SeeingtheSeas with us!
NASA Social participants will get a chance to:
– Connect virtually with like-minded space and Earth enthusiasts
– Receive a NASA Social badge that you can share online or print at home
– Interact with NASA, NOAA, ESA and EUMETSAT team members in real-time
– View the launch of the SpaceX Falcon 9 rocket that will boost Sentinel-6 Michael Freilich into orbit for its journey #SeeingTheSeas

Your Home, Our Mission.
Sentinel-6 Michael Freilich is being developed jointly by NASA, the European Space Agency (ESA), in the context of the European Copernicus program led by the European Commission, the European Organisation for the Exploitation of Meteorological Satellites (EUMETSAT), and the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA).

No registration is necessary. By attending this virtual event, you are agreeing to the event’s moderation policy as set forth by NASA.

NASA welcomes your comments. To encourage free-flowing discussion while maintaining the decorum appropriate to a taxpayer-funded organization, we will moderate comments using these guidelines:
Stay on topic. Other readers expect the comments about a post to deal with the topic at hand. If your comment is not relevant to the post, please post it as a Discussion topic.
No personal attacks. Criticism of decision-making and operational management, including the names of the individuals involved, is legitimate. Criticism on a purely personal level is not.
No profanity. No spam. No sexually explicit or discriminatory material.
Comments about politics and politicians must, like everything else, be on-topic and free from personal attacks.

NASA – National Aeronautics And Space Administration

NASA Jet Propulsion Laboratory

ESA – European Space Agency

NASA Earth

Vandenberg Air Force Base



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About Snap’s storied revenge – Robinhood Snacks/

BROAD CITY, (from left): Abbi Jacobson, Ilana Glazer, ‘Mushrooms’, (Season 4, ep. 404, airs Oct. 11, 2017). photo: ©Comedy Central / Courtesy: Everett Collection

Snap getting freaky with the filters
Dow Jones
28,211 (-0.35%)
S&P 500
3,436 (-0.22%)
11,485 (-0.28%)
$12,759 (+4.12%)
Hey Snackers,
If you thought your Trader Joe’s haul was pumpkin-extreme, think again: a man just won the “Pumpkin Super Bowl” with a 2,350-pound gourd named Tiger King. A lot to digest there.
Stocks ticked down yesterday as stimulus deal talks continued without any concrete progress (as usual). The White House is aiming to have some kind of deal done by tomorrow.
1. Snap hits a record on a wow-worthy quarter (it got its Facebook revenge)
Who didn’t get corona-ghosted last quarter… Snap stock soared ~30% to an all-time high after the little ghost reported expectation-smashing earnings. You probably noticed more ads appearing every 5 seconds as you tried to watch “Kylie sizzles on Capri beach” and “Oddly Satisfying.”
• Sales shot up 52% as advertisers started spending again, compared to growth of 17% in the previous quarter.
• Daily users grew 18% to 249M — that’s equivalent to 75% of the US population.
• Snap’s loss shrank 12%, but the 9-year-old company still isn’t profitable.
Zucking revenge… Snap’s growth slowed big time after Facebook’s Instagram copied its game-changing Stories back in 2016. But last quarter, Snap profited off FB’s misfortune: earnings were boosted by the FB ad boycott, as marketers shifted spend to Snap. Also: since TikTok was banned in India, Snap more than doubled its users in the world’s 2nd most populous country.
• Snap has done a lot this year, launching new features from Mini apps to TikTok rivaling Sounds to the (in)famous anime filter.
• There’s a lot you can do on Snap now besides sending double chin pics, from meditating with Headspace to Shazaming songs to identifying plant species.
Snap got lucky… with the FB boycott and the TikTok ban saga. Now the question is: can it keep up the growth and users it gained last quarter? Snap’s CFO said that it’s not clear whether pumped-up ad demand will stick. But investors ignored that, boosting the stock on the surprising growth.
2. Netflix stock slumps on slowing subscriber growth and subscripturation
Just like Emily in Paris… Netflix’s quarter didn’t go as planned. Netflix added just 2.2M subscribers in its third quarter, less than the 2.5M it forecast and waaay less than the 3.6M analysts expected. Netflix stock dropped 7% because in the markets, everything is relative:
• Netflix added nearly 16M subscribers in the 1st quarter of this year, and over 10M in Q2, making its latest quarter look even worse.
• It’s forecasting just 6M new subs this quarter, and expects paid subscriber additions to be down for the first half of 2021.
The boom is over… Netflix saw explosive growth during the first half of the year, as we hibernated with our laptops and instant ramen. It became a utility (gas, electric, and Flix) — but that also led to more subscripturation (aka: subscription saturation).
• Netflix already takes up 72% of US home streaming time. Plus, consumers are now spoilt for choice with newbie streamers like Disney+ (RIP Quibi). That’s why…
• Netflix added only 180K subscribers in the US and Canada. Subscribers in the Asia-Pacific region were the largest growth contributors, making up 46% of all newbie additions.
Netflix needs to get creative to reach non-streamers… It has 200M paying subscribers, but its next 100M will probably be streaming virgins — everyone else is over-subscribed. That’s why Netflix is looking to emerging markets like India and Brazil for future growth. It’s even offering a free, 48-hour streaming event in India — and it probably won’t even ask for payment info.
3. After 10 years, GM resurrects the gas-guzzling Hummer as an EV monster
Are We There Yet?… Like the 2005 Ice Cube family classic, the mid-2000s were filled with gas-guzzling cars that could fit entire football teams (RIP Lincoln Navigator). Now GM is bringing bulky back by reviving the Hummer, which it discontinued in 2009 when it went bankrupt. But now it’s the opposite of a gas-guzzler:
• The world’s first all-electric supertruck: What GM unveiled in a (mildly terrifying) commercial during the World Series on Tuesday.
• GM’s Hummer EV will be an electric pickup beast with 1K horsepower that goes zero to 60 in three seconds. BTW: LeBron is repping.
Smells Musky… GM has made big moves in the EV world, and is now competing against Tesla with the Hummer. It’s set to go on sale in a year – likely ahead of Elon’s Cybertruck.
• $20B: How much GM plans to invest in autonomous and all-electric vehicles through 2025, led by the Hummer pickup.
• $2B: How much GM just said it’s pouring into factories to build its Cadillac EV. It plans to launch 22 new electrified vehicles by 2023.
• $2B: How much GM was going to hand over to produce cars for e-truck startup Nikola. That’s on ice after fraud allegations against the startup.
This is a mainstream milestone for EVs… Everyone’s talking about Tesla, but EVs were just 2.6% of global car sales in 2019. GM’s sustainable version of its nostalgic, ultra-unsustainable car could lure more non-EV people to the electric side.
What else we’re Snackin’
• S3XY: Tesla reported expectation-beating earnings in its fifth-straight profitable quarter — it notched a record 139K deliveries.
• Quiti: Mobile streaming app Quibi, which raised a whopping $1.75B before launching, is shutting down after a lackluster 6-month run.
• Revv: AutoNation, the US’ largest auto dealership, had its “absolute best quarter ever” as we swapped subway rides and Ubers for cars.
• E-drama: Shares of troubled electric truck startup Nikola jumped after a GM exec ignited hopes of keeping their partnership deal alive.
• Sad: Disney says CA has set “unworkable” rules for theme park reopenings. The Happiest Place on Earth has to stay closed for now.
• Pill: OxyContin-maker Purdue Pharma reaches an $8.3B settlement after agreeing to plead guilty to fueling the opioid crisis.
Thanks for Snacking with us! Want to share the Snacks? Invite your friends to sign up here.
Snacks Daily Podcast
It’s the first ever I-IPO — Influencer Initial Public Offering.
Italian social media star Chiara Ferragni wants to take her 22M followers public. But will her “clothing-to-lifestyle persona” go viral as a stock?
Tune into our trendy 15-minute pod to hear why this is the biggest test yet for the influencer business model (pun intended).

Snack Fact of the Day
Air conditioning was invented to make ink stick better at a printing plant — not to help us sweat less
• Weekly jobless claims
• Earnings expected from Gilead, Intel, Coke, Kimberly-Clark, and Southwest
Disclosure: Authors of this Snacks own shares of Snap, Tesla, and Disney
ID: 1379683
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About – NASA’s OSIRIS-REx Spacecraft Successfully Touches Asteroid

NASA’s OSIRIS-REx mission readies itself to touch the surface of asteroid Bennu.
Credits: NASA/Goddard/University of Arizona
NASA’s Origins, Spectral Interpretation, Resource Identification, Security, Regolith Explorer (OSIRIS-REx) spacecraft unfurled its robotic arm Tuesday, and in a first for the agency, briefly touched an asteroid to collect dust and pebbles from the surface for delivery to Earth in 2023.
This well-preserved, ancient asteroid, known as Bennu, is currently more than 200 million miles (321 million kilometers) from Earth. Bennu offers scientists a window into the early solar system as it was first taking shape billions of years ago and flinging ingredients that could have helped seed life on Earth. If Tuesday’s sample collection event, known as “Touch-And-Go” (TAG), provided enough of a sample, mission teams will command the spacecraft to begin stowing the precious primordial cargo to begin its journey back to Earth in March 2021. Otherwise, they will prepare for another attempt in January.
“This amazing first for NASA demonstrates how an incredible team from across the country came together and persevered through incredible challenges to expand the boundaries of knowledge,” said NASA Administrator Jim Bridenstine. “Our industry, academic, and international partners have made it possible to hold a piece of the most ancient solar system in our hands.”
At 1:50 p.m. EDT, OSIRIS-REx fired its thrusters to nudge itself out of orbit around Bennu. It extended the shoulder, then elbow, then wrist of its 11-foot (3.35-meter) sampling arm, known as the Touch-And-Go Sample Acquisition Mechanism (TAGSAM), and transited across Bennu while descending about a half-mile (805 meters) toward the surface. After a four-hour descent, at an altitude of approximately 410 feet (125 meters), the spacecraft executed the “Checkpoint” burn, the first of two maneuvers to allow it to precisely target the sample collection site, known as “Nightingale.”
Ten minutes later, the spacecraft fired its thrusters for the second “Matchpoint” burn to slow its descent and match the asteroid’s rotation at the time of contact. It then continued a treacherous, 11-minute coast past a boulder the size of a two-story building, nicknamed “Mount Doom,” to touch down in a clear spot in a crater on Bennu’s northern hemisphere. The size of a small parking lot, the site Nightingale site is one of the few relatively clear spots on this unexpectedly boulder-covered space rock.
“This was an incredible feat – and today we’ve advanced both science and engineering and our prospects for future missions to study these mysterious ancient storytellers of the solar system,” said Thomas Zurbuchen, associate administrator for NASA’s Science Mission Directorate at the agency’s headquarters in Washington. “A piece of primordial rock that has witnessed our solar system’s entire history may now be ready to come home for generations of scientific discovery, and we can’t wait to see what comes next.”
“After over a decade of planning, the team is overjoyed at the success of today’s sampling attempt,” said Dante Lauretta, OSIRIS-REx principal investigator at the University of Arizona in Tucson. “Even though we have some work ahead of us to determine the outcome of the event – the successful contact, the TAGSAM gas firing, and back-away from Bennu are major accomplishments for the team. I look forward to analyzing the data to determine the mass of sample collected.”
All spacecraft telemetry data indicates the TAG event executed as expected. However, it will take about a week for the OSIRIS-REx team to confirm how much sample the spacecraft collected.
Real-time data indicates the TAGSAM successfully contacted the surface and fired a burst of nitrogen gas. The gas should have stirred up dust and pebbles on Bennu’s surface, some of which should have been captured in the TAGSAM sample collection head. OSIRIS-REx engineers also confirmed that shortly after the spacecraft made contact with the surface, it fired its thrusters and safely backed away from Bennu.
“Today’s TAG maneuver was historic,” said Lori Glaze, Planetary Science Division director at NASA Headquarters in Washington. “The fact that we safely and successfully touched the surface of Bennu, in addition to all the other milestones this mission has already achieved, is a testament to the living spirit of exploration that continues to uncover the secrets of the solar system.”

Captured on Aug. 11, 2020 during the second rehearsal of the OSIRIS-REx mission’s sample collection event, this series of images shows the SamCam imager’s field of view as the NASA spacecraft approaches asteroid Bennu’s surface. The rehearsal brought the spacecraft through the first three maneuvers of the sampling sequence to a point approximately 131 feet (40 meters) above the surface, after which the spacecraft performed a back-away burn.
Credits: NASA/Goddard/University of Arizona
“It’s hard to put into words how exciting it was to receive confirmation that the spacecraft successfully touched the surface and fired one of the gas bottles,” said Michael Moreau, OSIRIS-REx deputy project manager at NASA’s Goddard Space Flight Center in Greenbelt, Maryland. “The team can’t wait to receive the imagery from the TAG event late tonight and see how the surface of Bennu responded to the TAG event.”
The spacecraft carried out TAG autonomously, with pre-programmed instructions from engineers on Earth. Now, the OSIRIS-REx team will begin to assess whether the spacecraft grabbed any material, and, if so, how much; the goal is at least 60 grams, which is roughly equivalent to a full-size candy bar.
OSIRIS-REx engineers and scientists will use several techniques to identify and measure the sample remotely. First, they’ll compare images of the Nightingale site before and after TAG to see how much surface material moved around in response to the burst of gas.
“Our first indication of whether we were successful in collecting a sample will come on October 21 when we downlink the back-away movie from the spacecraft,” Moreau said. “If TAG made a significant disturbance of the surface, we likely collected a lot of material.”
Next, the team will try to determine the amount of sample collected. One method involves taking pictures of the TAGSAM head with a camera known as SamCam, which is devoted to documenting the sample-collection process and determining whether dust and rocks made it into the collector head. One indirect indication will be the amount of dust found around the sample collector head. OSIRIS-REx engineers also will attempt to snap photos that could, given the right lighting conditions, show the inside of the head so engineers can look for evidence of sample inside of it.

These images show the OSIRIS-REx Touch-and-Go Sample Acquisition Mechanism (TAGSAM) sampling head extended from the spacecraft at the end of the TAGSAM arm. The spacecraft’s SamCam camera captured the images on Nov. 14, 2018 as part of a visual checkout of the TAGSAM system, which was developed by Lockheed Martin Space to acquire a sample of asteroid material in a low-gravity environment. The imaging was a rehearsal for a series of observations that will be taken at Bennu directly after sample collection.
Credits: NASA/Goddard/University of Arizona
A couple of days after the SamCam images are analyzed, the spacecraft will attempt yet another method to measure the mass of the sample collected by determining the change in the spacecraft’s “moment of inertia,” a phrase that describes how mass is distributed and how it affects the rotation of the body around a central axis. This maneuver entails extending the TAGSAM arm out to the side of the spacecraft and slowly spinning the spacecraft about an axis perpendicular to the arm. This technique is analogous to a person spinning with one arm extended while holding a string with a ball attached to the end. The person can sense the mass of the ball by the tension in the string. Having performed this maneuver before TAG, and now after, engineers can measure the change in the mass of the collection head as a result of the sample inside.
“We will use the combination of data from TAG and the post-TAG images and mass measurement to assess our confidence that we have collected at least 60 grams of sample,” said Rich Burns, OSIRIS-REx project manager at Goddard. “If our confidence is high, we’ll make the decision to stow the sample on October 30.”
To store the sample, engineers will command the robotic arm to place the sample collector head into the Sample Return Capsule (SRC), located in the body of the spacecraft. The sample arm will then retract to the side of the spacecraft for the final time, the SRC will close, and the spacecraft will prepare for its departure from Bennu in March 2021 — this is the next time Bennu will be properly aligned with Earth for the most fuel-efficient return flight.
Video: http://bit.ly/2HdphXm
This (silent) animation shows the OSIRIS-REx spacecraft deploying its Touch-and-Go Sample Acquisition Mechanism (TAGSAM) to collect a sample of regolith (loose rocks and dirt) from the surface of the asteroid Bennu. The sampler head, with the regolith safely inside, is then sealed up in the spacecraft’s Sample Return Capsule, which will be returned to Earth in late 2023. Scientists will study the sample for clues about the early solar system and the origins of life.
Credits: NASA/Goddard
If, however, it turns out that the spacecraft did not collect enough sample at Nightingale, it will attempt another TAG maneuver on Jan. 12, 2021. If that occurs, it will touch down at the backup site called “Osprey,” which is another relatively boulder-free area inside a crater near Bennu’s equator.
OSIRIS-REx launched from Cape Canaveral Air Force Station in Florida Sept. 8, 2016. It arrived at Bennu Dec. 3, 2018, and began orbiting the asteroid for the first time on Dec. 31, 2018. The spacecraft is scheduled to return to Earth Sept. 24, 2023, when it will parachute the SRC into Utah’s west desert where scientists will be waiting to collect it.
Goddard provides overall mission management, systems engineering and the safety and mission assurance for OSIRIS-REx. Dante Lauretta of the University of Arizona, Tucson, is the principal investigator, and the University of Arizona also leads the science team and the mission’s science observation planning and data processing. Lockheed Martin Space in Denver built the spacecraft and is providing flight operations. Goddard and KinetX Aerospace are responsible for navigating the OSIRIS-REx spacecraft. OSIRIS-REx is the third mission in NASA’s New Frontiers Program, which is managed by NASA’s Marshall Space Flight Center in Huntsville, Alabama, for the agency’s Science Mission Directorate in Washington.
For more information on OSIRIS-REx:
Grey Hautaluoma / Joshua Handal
Headquarters, Washington
202-358-0668 / 202-358-2307
grey.hautaluoma-1@nasa.gov / joshua.a.handal@nasa.gov
Nancy Neal Jones
Goddard Space Flight Center, Greenbelt, Md.
Erin Morton
University of Arizona, Tucson
Last Updated: Oct. 21, 2020
Editor: Sean Potter

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Cost-Effectiveness in Health and Medicine – 9780195108248 – Medicine & Health Science Books

Product Description

A unique, in-depth discussion of the uses and conduct of cost-effectiveness analyses (CEAs) as decision-making aids in the health and medical fields, this volume is the product of over two years of comprehensive research and deliberation by a multi-disciplinary panel of economists, ethicists, psychometricians, and clinicians. Exploring cost-effectiveness in the context of societal decision-making for resource allocation purposes, this volume proposes that analysts include a “reference-case” analysis in all CEAs designed to inform resource allocation and puts forth the most explicit set of guidelines (together with their rationale) ever defined on the conduct of CEAs. Important theoretical and practical issues encountered in measuring costs and effectiveness, evaluating outcomes, discounting, and dealing with uncertainty are examined in separate chapters. Additional chapters on framing and reporting of CEAs elucidate the purpose of the analysis and the effective communication of its findings. Cost-Effectiveness in Health and Medicine differs from the available literature in several key aspects. Most importantly, it represents a consensus on standard methods–a feature integral to a CEA, whose principal goal is to permit comparisons of the costs and health outcomes of alternative ways of improving health. The detailed level at which the discussion is offered is another major distinction of this book, since guidelines in journal literature and in CEA-related books tend to be rather general–to the extent that the analyst is left with little guidance on specific matters. The focused overview of the theoretical background underlying areas of controversy and of methodological alternatives, and, finally, the accessible writing style make this volume a top choice on the reading lists of analysts in medicine and public health who wish to improve practice and comparability of CEAs. The book will also appeal to decision-makers in government, managed care, and industry who wish to consider the uses and limitations of CEAs.
” … clearly written with an excellent glossary and index. It is primarily for researchers and teachers, but is also accessible to those consumers and providers without a research background who are interested in how CEAs may contribute to health policy decisions.” Physiotherapy Canada (Fall

“Well-referenced chapters…A comprehensive glossary and index round out this well-organized book. The book comprehensively examines the methods of cost-effectiveness analysis…Worthwhile addition to the library…”–The New England Journal of Medicine

“At last we have a book that can serve as a manual of operations to assure a level playing field when comparing the cost-effectiveness of a preventive service with a treatment intervention or when comparing two or more prevention strategies for the same condition.”–American Journal of
Preventive Medicine

Abstract in The American Journal of Public Health

“Should be required reading for health economists, policy researchers, and clinical researchers.”–Canadian Journal of Public Health

“An impressive volume which is likely to be referenced in the economic evaluation literature for some years to come….This book makes an important contribution.”–Health Economics

“A “must-have” book for practitioners and students of economic evaluation or “cost-effective analysis”. It represents a milestone in the maturation of the discipline….A major step forward…Represents the collective wisdom (consensus judgement) of the tall foreheads in
discipline…instructive and practical.”–Annals of RCPSC

“A major step forward….This [book] represents the collective wisdom…of the tall foreheads in the discipline….Instructive and practical.”–Murray Krahn, MD, MSc, FRCPC, Annals of the Royal College of Physicians and Surgeons of Canada

“The book is clearly written with an excellent glossary and index. It is primarily for researchers and teachers, but is also accessible to those consumers and providers without a research background who are interested in how CEAs may contribute to health policy decisions.”–Physiotherapy
From the Back Cover
A unique, in-depth discussion of the uses and conduct of cost-effectiveness analyses (CEAs) as decision-making aids in the health and medical fields, this book is the product of over two years of comprehensive research and deliberation by a multi-disciplinary panel of economists, ethicists, psychometricians, and clinicians appointed by the U.S. Public Health Service. Exploring cost-effectiveness in the context of societal decision making for resource allocation purposes, the authors propose that analysts include a “reference-case” analysis in all CEAs designed to inform resource allocation, and they put forth the most explicit set of guidelines (together with their rationale) ever defined on the conduct of CEAs. Important theoretical and practical issues encountered in measuring costs and effectiveness, evaluating outcomes, discounting, and dealing with uncertainty are examined in separate chapters. Additional chapters on framing and reporting of CEAs elucidate the purpose of the analysis and the effective communication of its findings.
About the Author
Marthe R. Gold is at U.S. Public Health Service. Joanna E. Siegel is at U.S. Public Health Service. Louise B. Russell is at Rutgers University. Milton C. Weinstein is at Harvard University.

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25 Top Modern Home Exterior Designs – Engineering Discoveries

The modern home exterior design is the most popular among new house owners and those who intend to become the owner of a modern house. Even though it is one of the most popular design styles out there, modern design is getting more popular day by day.
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In Wyoming, An Ecologist Seeks A New Niche As A U.S. Senator


More than 10 years ago, Merav Ben-David encountered a bureaucratic blizzard when she launched a study of polar bears in Alaska. She had to comply with a host of regulatory policies, obtain permits from regional, federal, and tribal agencies, and plot out the team’s trip through the Artic Ocean. So, days after receiving her U.S. citizenship, the Israeli-born conservation ecologist says she found herself “neck deep” government affairs.
Now, Ben-David is once again neck deep in governance—but this time, she’s aiming to craft policy, not simply follow it. On 18 August, the University of Wyoming professor won the state’s Democratic primary for Senate. Now, she’s running for a U.S. Senate seat as an underdog against Republican Cynthia Lummis, Wyoming’s former representative to Congress.
Ben-David’s interest in ecology started on a farm. Growing up in Nahalat Yehuda, she tended to young animals—nestlings, bunnies, hedgehogs, and the like—that she found in the fields of her father’s farm. By her early 20s, she had a master’s degree in zoology and was leading wildlife tours in Kenya. In 1990, she began a doctoral program at the University of Alaska, Fairbanks. She became fascinated by the state’s marine ecosystems, occupied by mink, martens, otters, salmon, and polar bears. In 2000, she won a faculty job at the University of Wyoming.

UNITED STATES – NOVEMBER 23: A line of dark rain clouds moves over the U.S. Capitol in Washington on Wednesday, Nov. 23, 2011, the deadline for the Joint Select Committee on Deficit Reduction to reach an agreement on addressing the nation’s debt. (Photo By Bill Clark/CQ Roll Call)0

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Ben-David’s research, which includes highly cited studies of diet changes in Alaskan wildlife, the role of salmon runs in fertilizing river-side vegetation in the Alexander Archipelago, and the effects of the Exxon Valdez oil spill on otters in the Prince William Sound, frequently takes her back to Alaska, where she has witnessed the impacts of climate change. Peering off the stern of an icebreaker on that 2009 trip, for example, she had a realization: There was no ice on the normally frozen seas. The hastening pace of warming, she says, “made me realize we are simply running out of time.”
Around the same time, she found that the “context” of her work was evolving. “I felt a pressure to inform the public,” especially people living in Wyoming, about the threat of climate change. She began to juggle an active research program (she has published 114 articles and counting) with activism, writing letters, giving lectures, and lobbying for legislation. Some colleagues, she says, expressed concern that those activities would compromise her scientific work. But Ben-David arrived at a different conclusion: “I came to understand those efforts would be a lot more effective—more than just a conversation or a debate—if I was in the decision-making process.” Eventually, she decided to run for office.
Hostile political terrain
Wyoming’s political landscape is not particularly friendly for Ben-David, whose platform includes calls for stronger environmental regulation. Extractive industries—including mining, quarrying, oil, and gas—are dominant. And deeply Republican Wyoming hasn’t backed a Democrat for federal office since 1976. As a presidential candidate in 2016, Donald Trump won it with more than 67% of the vote.
Then there’s Ben-David’s opponent. Lummis is a household name in Wyoming; she’s held a number of elected positions, including as the state’s treasurer. Lummis received nearly 64,000 votes in winning the Republican primary with some 60% of the vote. Ben-David, in contrast, received just under 10,000 votes to win the Democratic primary with 40% of the vote.
Despite such numbers, Ben-David is optimistic. “Navigating hostile terrain has always been my day job,” she says. And colleagues admire her tenacity. “Her resolve is inspirational,” says Henry Harlow, a zoologist and director of National Park Service Research Center at the University of Wyoming.
To woo voters, Ben-David is leaning into her differences with Lummis. Whereas Lummis’s campaign has decried “attacks from the environmental left” that threaten the state’s major industries and “market opportunities at home,” Ben-David advocates “futureproofing” the state’s economy, which is facing its biggest downturn since 2005. Ben-David is calling for greater investment in infrastructure, education, and job transitioning programs. Such efforts, she says, will not only “rescue Wyoming” from crippling recent job losses, but “reimagine and rebuild it.”
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She also supports federal investments in alternative energy and wildlife protection, and stiffer regulation of greenhouse gas emissions. “This is about preserving our way of life,” she says. “Mother Nature is not going to wait anymore.” Wyoming residents, Ben-David believes, are now seeing both the economic and ecological the impacts of climate change, such as shorter, warmer winters (limiting the ski seasons) and drier, hotter summers (extending the fire seasons). “People are seeing in their own backyards that we are not immune” to global warming, she says.
The importance of science in the senate
Ben-David, who has emphasized her scientific training during her campaign, says it offers a useful and pragmatic lens through which to see politics. Scientists are “forward-facing” she says, relying on prospective experimentation and observation, whereas politicians are often “backward-referencing,” for example by looking to the law for precedents.
The Senate, she says, could use a few more scientists. Congress “simply lacks people who understand the facts, and how those facts should—or should not—influence policy.” And she hopes her run will inspire peers and students to participate in politics as well. “Laws, like the ecosystems, are fragile,” she says. “Conservationists, ecologists, scientists—we need to join this critical civic process more than ever.”
If Ben-David pulls off an upset, other researchers believe she has the qualities needed to do the job. Ben-David is “fearless in the quest for truth,” says Terrie Williams, a mammalian physiologist at the University of California, Santa Cruz. “She will not be intimidated,” Harlow says, “by self interest groups or seasoned politicians with threatening agendas.”
Ben-David, meanwhile, says her run is also a learning experience. “Politics, it’s a science,” she says. “Now, I’m a student of that science, too.”

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