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New Zealand-Launched Rocket Reaches Space, Not Orbit

California-based company Rocket Lab said Thursday it had launched a test rocket into space from its New Zealand launch pad, although the rocket didn’t reach orbit as hoped.

The company said its Electron rocket lifted off at 4:20 p.m. Thursday and reached space three minutes later.

“It has been an incredible day and I’m immensely proud of our talented team,” company founder Peter Beck said in a statement.

Beck, a New Zealander, said the early stages of the mission went well.

“We didn’t quite reach orbit and we’ll be investigating why, however reaching space in our …read more

New Generation of Companies Looks to Create New Kind of Plant-based Food

In a San Francisco kitchen, chefs are re-creating everyday foods, such as eggs, mayonnaise, salad dressings and cookies from unconventional sources.

“Playing with ingredients that are totally different in the food system is a lot like walking on the moon. We’re doing things no one has ever done before so it’s challenging,” said chef Chris Jones, who heads product development at the Hampton Creek technology company.

While vegetarian foods have been around as long as there have been vegetarians, a new generation of companies, mostly from California, is using new technology to look for alternative protein sources that do not …read more

Using the Internet to Monitor the Elderly at Home

According to the National Institutes of Health, 17 percent of people around the world will be 65 or older by 2050. Currently it is just more than 8 percent. That expected flood of elderly people is prompting authorities to think about new ways to care for them, and no surprise, the internet is involved. VOA’s Kevin Enochs reports. …read more

Using Technology to Create New Kind of Plant-Based Food

Whether it’s for religious, ethical or health reasons, people who don’t eat meat have had vegetarian options with the help of some creativity in the kitchen. Plants may also hold the key to solving global food problems. That’s the mission of a new generation of plant-based foods created with technology’s help. These mostly California-based companies are finding shelf space in U.S. grocery stores and beyond. VOA’s Elizabeth Lee visited a few of these test kitchens. …read more

Instagram, Snapchat Rated ‘Worst’ Platforms for Young People

Instagram and Snapchat are the worst social media platform for young people’s mental health, and YouTube is the most positive, a new study suggests.

The ranking comes in a report from the British Royal Society for Public Health, which ranked the sites’ impact on young people.

“Social media has been described as more addictive than cigarettes and alcohol, and is now so entrenched in the lives of young people that it is no longer possible to ignore it when talking about young people’s mental health issues,” said Shirley Cramer, the chief executive of the RSPH.

“It’s interesting to see Instagram and Snapchat ranking …read more