After another series of attacks by President Donald Trump against the 17 agencies and organizations of the United States Intelligence community, politicians, pundits and even people outside the government questioned the implications of a President who disregards the evidence and advice of intelligence experts any time they contradict his rhetoric and false claims.

California Democratic Representative Ted Lieu offered some guidance to the President over reliable and unreliable sources of information.

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Helmut Corneli / Alamy

Animals’ ability to recognize themselves in a mirror — long considered the ultimate test of self-awareness — has historically been limited to great apes like chimpanzees and, more recently, young dolphins. However, an international group of researchers working in Japan recently tried “the mirror test,” as it’s known, with fish, and the results were shocking.

The fish passed.

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At the National Aquarium in Baltimore, Maryland, Allison Ginsburg, manager of dolphin training, feeds Spirit, one of the mothers who gave birth to a calf this spring, June 1, 2011. (Algerina Perna/Baltimore Sun/MCT via Getty Images)

The first time children can recognize themselves in a mirror is a significant developmental milestone. However, a new study has found that young bottlenose dolphins reach this stage sooner than human infants.

Human babies typically develop self-awareness, or the ability to recognize that the reflection in a mirror is themselves and not just another baby, around 12–18 months. In contrast, according to a study published this month in PLOS One, bottlenose dolphins (Tursiops truncatus) gain this awareness around seven months.

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[DIGEST: DiscoveryKids, ScienceAlert, Cell, Wired, GenomeResearch, FrontMolNeurosci, NEJM]

A four-year-old octopus may be smarter than a four-year-old child, depending on how you define intelligence and adaptability. Tool use, forethought, reasoning and puzzle-solving skills have all been observed in elephants, chimpanzees, dolphins, birds and octopi.

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Phone records and intercepted calls of U.S. Intelligence agencies show that members of Donald Trump's presidential campaign had repeated communication with senior Russian intelligence officials in the year before the election, the New York Times reported last night. The report cites four current and former American officials who spoke to The Times on condition of anonymity because the continued investigation is classified.

American law enforcement and intelligence agencies intercepted the communications around the time they discovered evidence Russian hackers had attempted to influence the election outcome by hacking the Democratic National Committee, according to three of the officials. The intelligence agencies then sought to learn whether the Trump campaign was colluding with the Russians on hacking or other efforts to influence the election. The officials interviewed in recent weeks said that, so far, they had seen no evidence of such cooperation.

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The CIA concluded in a secret assessment presented to lawmakers that Russia intentionally interfered in the 2016 presidential election––specifically to help Donald Trump win. In previous assessments, the CIA characterized Russia's motivations as an attempt to undermine the electoral process. But those assessments always stopped short of saying that Moscow's goal was to help elect Trump.

According to officials briefed on the matter who spoke to The Washington Post, intelligence agencies have identified individuals with connections to the Russian government who provided WikiLeaks with thousands of emails from the Democratic National Committee and others, including those of John Podesta, Hillary Clinton's campaign chairman. U.S. officials described these individuals as "actors" known to the intelligence community who are part of a larger Russian espionage operation targeting the presidential race.

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