Astronauts aboard the International Space Station have successfully grown the first flowers in space.
The NASA team have been trying for nearly two years to cultivate edible plants in microgravity, but after a few failed growth cycles, it seems the team's efforts are finally blossoming, with their first ever bunch of zinnia flowers blooming in space.
The flower was grown “aeroponically” - that is, in an air environment without soil. Plants grown aeroponically require far less water and fertilizer, don't need pesticide, are much less prone to disease, and grow up to three times faster than plants grown in soil.
The plant growing project aboard the ISS is part of a bigger fact-finding mission for building a colony on Mars and other planets, and how to grow food effectively in space.
The Robot Threat
Image via Ikon Images/Rex/Shutterstock
While technology is generally designed to make our lives easier, there are also increasing fears that robots will one day take our jobs.
According to a World Economic Forum report released this week, economists predict that the next 5 years will bring the “4th industrial revolution” – which could see five million jobs in the world's leading economies becoming obsolete because of advances in technology.
Administrative and office jobs will account for two-thirds of the losses, with "routine white-collar office functions at risk of being decimated", but there will be gains in computer, mathematical, architecture and engineering-related fields.
Around 65% of children starting primary school today will end up working in jobs that don't yet exist, and their future training is crucial, according to the report.
Are you afraid that the robots will take your job?
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