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How to watch SpaceX’s first crew dock with the International Space S

On Saturday afternoon, SpaceX launched its first human crew to space for NASA on the company’s new Crew Dragon spacecraft — but the mission isn’t over yet. After spending nearly a full day in orbit, the two passengers on board SpaceX’s vehicle, NASA astronauts Bob Behnken and Doug Hurley, will attempt to dock with the International Space Station this morning.

SpaceX’s Crew Dragon has an automatic docking system, which uses a series of sensors and cameras to help the vehicle approach the ISS and then grab on to an existing docking port. The Crew Dragon successfully tested out this technique last year when SpaceX launched a test version of the vehicle to the ISS without crew on board. But this time, the Crew Dragon will carry very precious...

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Watch NASA astronauts fly SpaceX’s Crew Dragon using touchscreens

Nearly two hours after NASA astronauts Bob Behnken and Doug Hurley became the first astronauts launched to space on a privately-owned rocket, they also became the first to pilot a spaceship using only touchscreen controls.

SpaceX’s Crew Dragon eschews the famous maze of manual controls and switches found on retired spacecraft like the Space Shuttle or the Apollo command modules. Instead, Crew Dragon pilots have just three large touchscreen panels in front of them and a few spare buttons below. So during the few times that they have to manually control the spacecraft, they do so using a video game-style interface on those screens.

Behnken and Hurley got to take that interface for a brief test ride Saturday afternoon when SpaceX had them...

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SpaceX successfully launches first crew to orbit, ushering in new er

Image: SpaceX / NASA

After nearly two decades of effort, Elon Musk’s aerospace company, SpaceX, successfully launched its first two people into orbit, ushering in a new age of human spaceflight in the United States. The flight marked the first time astronauts have launched into orbit from American soil in nearly a decade, and SpaceX is now the first company to send passengers to orbit on a privately made vehicle.

The two astronauts — veteran NASA fliers Bob Behnken and Doug Hurley — rode into space inside SpaceX’s new automated spacecraft called the Crew Dragon, a capsule designed to take people to and from the International Space Station. Strapped inside the sleek, gumdrop-shaped capsule, the duo lifted off on top of SpaceX’s Falcon 9 rocket from NASA’s...

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Meet the cute stuffed dinosaur that hitched a ride on SpaceX’s histo

Astronauts Bob Behnken and Doug Hurley had some company on their historic flight to space today: a stuffed dinosaur tucked into one of the seats on SpaceX’s Crew Dragon.

Behnken and Hurley each have a son, and both boys are dinosaur enthusiasts. Before the flight, the boys gathered all their dinosaur toys together, and Tremor, a sparkly apatosaurus was selected to accompany Behnken and Hurley to space. “That was a super cool thing for us to get a chance to do for both of our sons who I hope are super excited to see their toys floating around with us on board,” Behnken said during an tour of the capsule in orbit. “I’m sure they would rather be here, given the opportunity, but hopefully they’re proud of this as well.”

The toy was...

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Microsoft lays off journalists to replace them with AI

Illustration by Alex Castro / The Verge

Microsoft is laying off dozens of journalists and editorial workers at its Microsoft News and MSN organizations. The layoffs are part of a bigger push by Microsoft to rely on artificial intelligence to pick news and content that’s presented on MSN.com, inside Microsoft’s Edge browser, and in the company’s various Microsoft News apps. Many of the affected workers are part of Microsoft’s SANE (search, ads, News, Edge) division, and are contracted as human editors to help pick stories.

“Like all companies, we evaluate our business on a regular basis,” says a Microsoft spokesperson in a statement. “This can result in increased investment in some places and, from time to time, re-deployment in others. These decisions are not the result of the...

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The Air Force weather team that keeps canceling your rocket launches

Bad weather at Cape Canaveral forced SpaceX to postpone its first launch attempt on Wednesday, May 27th. | Photo by Joel Kowsky / NASA

With less than 20 minutes to go before SpaceX’s first crewed flight, weather conditions remained miserable, forcing meteorologists at the Air Force’s 45th Weather Squadron to deliver bad news to NASA and SpaceX.

“It definitely hurts, especially when we have those hard requirements that when something hits, there’s nothing we can do about it,” Capt. Jason Fontenot, the space lift weather operations flight commander at the 45th Weather Squadron, said during a press call. “And we just kind of have to pass on the information, saying, ‘Even though we’re not at the launch window yet, this is very unlikely that we will see this take off today.’”

Military personnel who work at the Squadron in Cape Canaveral, Florida are used to being the ones...

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How to watch the SpaceX Crew Dragon mission

The Falcon 9 rocket set to carry SpaceX’s Crew Dragon to the ISS. | SpaceX

On Saturday, May 30th, SpaceX’s Crew Dragon is set to become the first private spacecraft to carry humans into orbit. The launch, scheduled for 3:22PM ET, will also mark the first time in nearly a decade that NASA astronauts have launched into orbit from Cape Canaveral, Florida.

For NASA astronauts Bob Behnken and Doug Hurley, this will be their second attempt at this historic launch. The first launch attempt, on Wednesday, May 27th, was scrubbed due to poor weather conditions less than 17 minutes before launch. They’ll get another chance today. If today’s launch is delayed for any reason, the next launch attempt will be on Sunday, May 31st, at 3PM ET.

NASA plans to cover today’s event live, starting at around 11AM ET. If all goes...

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The Verge’s favorite hobbies to do while stuck at home

Putting things in jars is a surprisingly therapeutic activity. | Photo by William Poor / The Verge

If you’re anything like us, over the past couple of months you’ve probably finished every “must watch” TV series on Netflix, cleaned your apartment from top to bottom, and completed every video game in your backlog. We get it: social distancing can get pretty boring.

So if you’re finding yourself with a lot of time to kill, why not spend it on learning something completely new? With some basic supplies and online resources, it’s possible to learn a lot of cool and sometimes downright useful skills, like knitting, calligraphy, or even taking care of a bicycle.

We’re a tech site (obviously) so we’re not claiming to be experts in all of the hobbies we’re recommending below. But what we are good at is locating a lot of very specific and...

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SpaceX Crew Dragon launch live blog

Follow along as the astronauts suit up and board the Crew Dragon

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Waymo’s robot minivans are ready to roll in the Bay Area for the fir

Self-propelled car from Google sister company Waymo Photo by Andrej Sokolow/picture alliance via Getty Images

Waymo’s self-driving cars are returning to Bay Area roads for the first time since the company halted its public testing in early March because of the coronavirus outbreak. The Alphabet-owned company plans to return its fleet of autonomous minivans to service starting June 8th, according to an email obtained by The Verge.

Waymo’s self-driving cars will be put to use delivering packages for two Bay Area non-profits: illustrator Wendy McNaughton’s #DrawTogether, which provides art kits to Bay Area kids; and Lighthouse for the Blind and Visually Impaired.

The company is the latest autonomous vehicle operator to discover that doing deliveries allows it to sidestep restrictions that would otherwise require them to keep their autonomous...

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