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26,000 people applied to move to Arkansas and get $10,000

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26,000 people applied to move to Arkansas and get $10,000

If you’ve ever thought about a move to the Ozarks, you’re not alone.

More than 26,000 people have applied for a program that will pay them to move to northwest Arkansas.

The Northwest Arkansas Council’s “Life Works Here” program is offering the money to remote workers willing to move to the region, Fox News previously reported. The program will also provide the new residents with a bicycle to enjoy the region’s miles of trails or a membership to a local art or cultural institution.

The program has already selected its first 25 recipients, it announced this week. They include an executive chef and James Beard Foundation Impact Fellow from Atlanta, a digital marketing manager from Denver, a music producer and “creative community curator” from Los Angeles, a gaming producer from Los Angeles and a cloud technology manager from San Francisco, according to the announcement.

“This first wave of new talent to the northwest Arkansas region generated by the ‘Life Works Here’ campaign is just a sampling of the exceptional individuals we’ve been able to attract to our region with the incentive program,” Northwest Arkansas Council CEO Nelson Peacock said in a press release.

Peacock said the group had been “overwhelmed by the unbelievable response.” The applicants included people from all 50 states and more than 115 countries.

“This program is not only a benefit to the recipients and new talent for our region, but it also contributes to the vibrancy of our existing, growing market and our local economy,” he said.

The program launched last November, thanks to support from the Walton Family Foundation. It had $1 million to offer to new residents and the program is still accepting applicants.

“Professionals all over the country are starting to see the benefits of life in the Heartland and Bentonville and Northwest Arkansas are at the top of the list,” Steuart Walton said in a press release. “This region welcomes innovators and thought leaders to a community defined by world-class biking, cultural experiences and a true entrepreneurial spirit.”

The area isn’t just known for its recreation opportunities. It’s also home to the headquarters of major businesses like Walmart, Tyson Foods and J.B. Hunt Transport Services.

To qualify for the program, one needs to be able to move within six months, sign a lease for local housing or buy a home, be 24 or older, have at least two years of work experience and be employed full time. Candidates must also be US citizens or be able to work legally in the US and currently live outside Arkansas.

Ideal candidates will also be STEAM professionals or entrepreneurs, according to the program’s website. And they’re looking for people “who will add to the vibrancy of our community.”

The announcement comes the same week that a similar program in Tulsa, Oklahoma announced that it was renewing itself and offering $10,000 up front for new residents who buy a home in the city. Previously, the Tulsa Remote program had only paid out the money in installments over the course of a year.

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Bill Gates said to be growing potatoes for McDonald’s fries

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Bill Gates said to be growing potatoes for McDonald's fries

Next time you savor a McDonald’s french fry, remember to thank Bill Gates for the tasty spud.

As reported in The Post, the soon-to-be single computer magnate happens to own more farmland than anyone else in the United States. Known for loving fast food — although his burger of choice comes from the Washington-based chainlet Burgermaster — Gates, according to NBC News, grows potatoes for McDonald’s in fields so vast they can be scoped from outer space.

Although Gates has focused his energies on saving our climate, he has made clear that the tater patches are strictly money-making operations.

“My investment group chose to do this,” stated Farmer Bill during an AMA on Reddit. “It is not connected to climate.”

Considering that Gates is said to own 269,000 acres of fertile land in 18 states, it’s easy to imagine him keeping track of it all on some souped-up series of spreadsheets. If so, gangs of divorce lawyers — including some who worked on the Jeff Bezos bust-up — have surely been scrutinizing the potato haul. Gates, the fourth-richest person in the world, married his impending ex, Melinda, without a prenuptial agreement, so they will be splitting property via a so-called “separation contract.”

No word on whether or not she will soon reign as McDonald’s potato queen.

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Honeybee worker can produce millions of identical clones, study shows

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Honeybee worker can produce millions of identical clones, study shows

A South African subspecies of the honeybee is reportedly able to produce millions of clones of itself. 

According to new research published in the journal Current Biology and Proceedings of the Royal Society B, one such insect – known as the Cape honeybee or Apis mellifera capensis– has managed to do so many times over the past 30 years. 

It’s a process called thelytokous parthenogenesis, which a group of international scientists said is akin to the “virgin birth of a female.” 

While asexual reproduction is fairly common, genetically identical offspring is not. 

The exchange of genetic material between different organisms, or “recombination,” normally leads to the production of offspring with combinations of different traits.

If there even is only one parent, New Scientist noted, offspring born from thelytokous parthenogenesis will still be born with a slightly different genetic makeup.

And yet, the worker Cape honeybee has reportedly found a way to reduce recombination and remain genetically healthy, whereas asexual reproduction has been lethal in honeybees before, resulting in inbred larvae that don’t survive. 

“For workers, it is important to reduce the frequency of recombination so as to not produce offspring that are homozygous.”

In order to learn more, the paper’s authors “experimentally manipulated” Cape workers and Cape queens to reproduce thelytokously.

“The two female castes of the Cape honeybee, Apis mellifera capensis, differ in their mode of reproduction. While workers always reproduce thelytokously, queens always mate and reproduce sexually,” the researchers explained in the paper’s abstract.

Performing fieldwork at South Africa’s Plant Protection Research Institute in Stellenbosch, the team instrumentally inseminated a queen with the semen of a single male and then introduced a brood comb holding several hundred eggs laid by the queen into a colony to be reared. 

Queens were made to reproduce asexually using what researchers said amounted to a “chastity belt.”

“When the queens were 5 days post eclosion we constrained them in an artificial insemination apparatus [37] without narcosis. We then glued a 5 mm piece of surgical tape (Micropore, 3M, Minnesota) over the sting chamber using nail varnish,” the paper explained. 

The researchers monitored the queens, confirming the chastity belts were intact after each flight around the colony and, eventually, compared asexually reproduced larvae of the queen to those of the workers.

“We monitored the queens closely for the next two weeks, to determine if and when oviposition had commenced. We collected larvae as soon as they appeared into ethanol,” the researchers wrote.

“Not all queens flew, not all returned from mating flights, and not all laid. In the end, we were able to harvest one queen and 25 of her larval progeny into ethanol.”

The group also genotyped four workers and 63 of their larvae.

Ultimately, the authors found that the queen showed levels of genetic recombination 100 times more than seen in the cloned offspring of the worker bees.

“Using a combination of microsatellite genotyping and whole-genome sequencing we find that a reduction in recombination is confined to workers only,” the abstract concluded.

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Russia’s navy kicks off large-scale drills in Pacific ocean

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Russia's navy kicks off large-scale drills in Pacific ocean

Large-scale drills of Russia’s Pacific Fleet began in the central part of the Pacific Ocean, the Russian Ministry of Defense reported on Thursday, June 10.

According to the ministry, 20 warships, submarines and support vessels are taking part in the exercises. In particular the missile cruiser “Varyag”, the large anti-submarine ship “Admiral Panteleev”, the frigate “Marshal Shaposhnikov” as well as other military and support vessels.

In addition, about 20 aircraft are involved in the exercise, including Tu-142mz long-range anti-submarine aircraft and MiG-31BM high-altitude fighter-interceptors.

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