1.26.2017

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1.26.2018
We scour 100+ sources so you don't have to. Culture, science, sports, politics, business, and more - all packaged in a 5-minute read below.
 
NEED TO KNOW.
Trump Speech at Davos Today.
President Trump arrived at the World Economic Forum in the small ski resort village of Davos, Switzerland, set to give a speech to multinational CEOs and financiers from around the world (today at 8am ET). While the speech will focus on the President's America First agenda observers anxiously await how Trump will frame trade issues - including any potential new tariffs or barriers. The issue took on new urgency for the US after this week's news that the 11 countries remaining in the Trans-Pacific Partnership reached their own agreement (the US pulled out last year). Trump - who is the first sitting US president to attend the conference since Bill Clinton in 2000 - also took time to mend fences with British Prime Minister Theresa May. The Forum - which runs from January 23rd to 26th - draws more than 2,500 business, political and academic leaders from around the globe. Read more about what it is and why it's important here.

Ancient Jawbone Revises Human Timeline.  
In a report released yesterday, scientists said they've found fossilized fragments of a jawbone estimated to be between 177,000 and 194,000 years old. The bone was found in a collapsed cave in Israel, making it the oldest known remains of a modern human ever found outside of Africa. Researchers have long thought that Homo sapiens (see 101) emerged in East Africa about 200,000 years ago and that a small group successfully migrated out around 60,000 years ago. Previous remains suggested that some groups may have expanded out of Africa (but died off) between 90,000 and 120,000 years ago - the new discovery pushes that timeline back by at least 50,000 years. DNA testing is required to determine whether this early explorer's group went on to populate the rest of the world. 

Russia Probe Escalates.
The probe of potential Russian meddling into the 2016 election may be reaching its final stages, as reports say Special Counsel Robert Mueller's office interviewed over 20 White House employees, including senior officials, in recent weeks. The news follows the questioning of Attorney General Jeff Sessions, the first cabinet member to be interviewed. In a related story contested by the White House, President Trump reportedly threatened to dismiss Mueller in the early weeks of the investigation, arguing he had conflicts of interest. Top White House counsel Donald McGahn in turn threatened to resign over the move. The President denied the news and McGahn declined to comment. Separately, the Justice Department said it had recovered months of missing texts between two FBI agents accused of anti-Trump bias. 
 
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IN THE KNOW.

Sports, Entertainment & Culture.

> Vince McMahon, CEO of WWE, announces return of XFL football league in 2020 (More)
> Nelly accused of sexual assault by two women (More) | Casey Affleck will not present at Oscars due to sexual harassment allegations (More)
> Captains LeBron James, Stephen Curry make NBA All-Star draft selections; full roster here (More)


Science & Technology.

> Hepatitis C drug found to be effective in fighting Zika virus (More)
> Plastic trash can increase coral reef disease by 20x, as big a threat to reefs as climate change (More)
> New method of controlling qubits - the building block of quantum computing - may allow 1000x longer computation times (More)
 

Business & Markets.

> Economic bellwether Caterpillar beats estimates, sees equipment sales surge 35% in Q4 (More)
> Starbucks earnings disappoint due to lackluster holiday sales, shares fall 4% (More)
> Sources: Viacom, CBS discussing potential merger (More)
 

Politics & World Affairs.

> Trump rolls out plan for path to citizenship for 1.8 million 'dreamers' (More)
Fire at South Korea hospital kills at least 37 (More)
> Report says Iran has fired at least 23 ballistic missiles since start of 2015 nuclear deal, missiles are nuclear-capable but not in violation of deal (More)
WEEKEND READS.

The Kill Chain. 

The Guardian | Roy Wenzl. Inside the unit - sitting out in the fields of Kansas - that tracks targets for US drone attacks, and the emotional toll war-at-a-distance takes on the operators. (Read)
 

Facebook's Downward Spiral. 

Vanity Fair | Nick Bilton. Maybe a dramatic statement, maybe not - but long after recognizing the world was increasingly divided, Facebook is just now realizing it may be a main contributor to it. It's just unsure what to do about it. (Read)
 

Life After Leaving a Polygamous Sect. 

Buzzfeed | Anne Helen Petersen. For women who've left the Fundamentalist Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints - a polygamous, unrecognized sect of the Mormon Church - the long struggle is to not let their experience define them. (Read)
 

The Church that Thrives in a Ghost Town. 

BBC | Owen Amos. You may have heard of Centralia, PA - the town burning from the bottom up, sitting on top of a never-ending coal fire. With 6 remaining residents, somehow a single church continues to thrive. (Read)
ETCETERA.
Burger King's flame-grilled take on net neutrality goes viral.

Doggos: Somehow...this German Shepard and tiny owlet are best friends (amazing photos). 

Doomsday clock moves 30 seconds closer to midnight.

MIT makes a meta chart of all the jobs that will be automated in the future

Grumpy Cat wins $710,000 in copyright lawsuit.

Mathematically, water through a hose is more complicated than black holes (and you can win $1 million if you solve the problem). 

Vandals go on a joy ride, damage the Field of Dreams in Iowa

Oprah is probably not going to run for President

Job Creation: More exorcists needed due to increase in demonic activity.

Historybook: Australia Day: 1st penal colony arrives, effectively founding Australia (1788); HBD Paul Newman (1925); HBD Ellen DeGeneres (1958); RIP Bear Bryant (1983).
"IT'S NOT THE WILL TO WIN THAT MATTERS - EVERYONE HAS THAT. IT'S THE WILL TO PREPARE TO WIN THAT MATTERS."
Paul 'Bear' Bryant
 
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