Radiation levels on Mars are safe for humans (and other things we didn't cover)

NASA/JPL-Caltech/Ashima Research/SWRI

It’s the Tuesday edition of GeekBytes. Today we'll take a look at yet another weird building project in China, the homework that spies on you, news from NASA, and more.

E-textbooks can tattle when you don't do your homework [The Chronicle of Higher Education]

School is going to suck even more in the future with robot teachers that literally have eyes behind their head and homework that tracks itself. CourseSmart, a major publisher of e-textbooks, is rolling out a new tool that will track a student’s reading habits—or if they are actually reading in the first place. This could very well eliminate the excuse of saying your dog ate your homework because everything is digital and it'll know if you actually did the assignment at all. [via Mashable]

Mars radiation is safe for astronauts [NASA]

For future astronauts, life on Mars will probably be extremely hard thanks to an atmosphere that contains barely any air at all, and the lack of protection from the sun. On the bright side, the Curiosity rover has taken the first off-world Radiation Assessment Detector test and discovered that the radiation levels on Mars are safe for humans. According to NASA, the radiation levels detected on the surface of Mars are similar to those experienced on the International Space Station. So now we know astronauts could survive Mars in spacesuits—that is, until terraforming tech is perfected. [via Engadget ]

Turn a Raspberry Pi into XMBC hardware [Hack a Day]

Hack a Day has put together a handy guide on how to set up your Raspberry Pi into dedicated media PC running XMBC. You can already put together your own media center PC for fairly cheap, but this takes the cake with a sub $100 remote-controlled Linux machine on a stick.

Nothing could possibly go wrong with building a skyscraper in three months [Construction Week Online]

As you may know, China is no stranger to weird architectural feats . Apparently, now a construction company there is planning to build the world’s largest skyscraper in just 90 days. It almost sounds too stupid to be true, but if it isn’t a hoax, it will either end in a tragedy of hubris or a baffling engineering achievement. [via Gizmodo]

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