TWIS: Google’s Embarrassing Error Plunged Share Prices, Evidence Of Human Ancestors Chowing Down On Hippos, And Much More This Week

All the biggest science news stories of the week.


Charlie Haigh

Social Media and Marketing Assistant

All the biggest science news stories of the week.

Image credit: Edited by IFLScience

This week, researchers are using artificial intelligence (AI) to decipher ancient Babylonian texts, the sky over Hawai’i appears to glitch like the title screen of The Matrix, and we ask the question: is your phone heavier when it’s full of data?

Google's Rival To ChatGPT Makes Embarrassing JWST Error That Wipes $100 Billion Off Shares

Google’s wannabe rival to ChatGPT is off to a shaky start after its launch video featured a glaring error about JWST and exoplanets. As a result of the blunder, shares in parent company Alphabet plunged by around $100 billion on Wednesday. Read the full story here


AI Deciphers Ancient Babylonian Texts And Finds Beautiful Lost Hymn

Researchers have crafted an AI system capable of deciphering fragments of ancient Babylonian texts. Dubbed the “Fragmentarium”, the algorithm holds the potential to piece together some of the oldest stories ever written by humans, including the Epic of Gilgamesh. Read the full story here

2.9-Million-Year-Old Butchery Reveals Human Ancestors Had A Taste For Hippo

Along the shores of Lake Victoria in Africa, archaeologists have uncovered the oldest ever evidence of human ancestors using tools to butcher the meat of ancient hippopotamuses. Dating to roughly 2.9 million years old, the Stone Age toolkit shows the earliest found evidence of hominins chowing down on very large animals. Read the full story here

No, The Matrix Did Not Glitch Over The Sky Of Hawai’i

January 28 saw a peculiar event taking place above the sky of Hawai’i. Green lights were seen coming down from the heavens. The bizarre effect, reminiscent of the computer-inspired title screen of The Matrix, was not proof that we live in a simulation. However, it wasn't a NASA satellite taking observations, as previously thought, either. Read the full story here

New Giant Extinct Penguin Could Be The Largest Of All Time

The fossil remnants of 57-million-year-old giant penguins were found on the east coast of New Zealand’s South Island. As scientists unscrambled the finds, it became clear there were three new species, one of which was probably larger than any known member of the penguin family. Read the full story here


Feature of the week: 

Is Your Phone Heavier When It's Full Of Data? We've Done The Math

Here’s a weird question: does your phone weigh more when it’s “full” than when it’s “empty”? The answer is surprisingly complex. Read the full story here

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