The posts below were among the most popular of '07 and syndicated on Reuters News or featured on Digg.
There is a strange door-like structure at the base of the mountain formation from a NASA image of that is causing a stir. The first person to notice it wasn’t a NASA scientist, however, but rather a Russian reader of the portal R&D.Cnews, Alexander Novgorodov. Taking a closer look at an image taken by the spacecraft Reconnaissance Orbiter, he noticed an unusual morphology, which looks strikingly like a manmade doorway.
Since stories have started surfacing more recently, many have wondered, if the rumors are true. Are there really 'continents', or massive
floating garbage patches residing in the pacific ocean? Apparently, the rumors are true, and these unsightly patches are reportedly
killing marine life and releasing poisons that enter the human food chain, as well. However, before you start imagining a plastic version of Maui, keep in mind that these plastic patches certainly aren'tsolid surfaced islands that you could build a house on! Ocean currents have collected massive amounts of garbage into a sort of plastic "soup" where countless bits of discarded plastic float intertwined just beneath the surface. Indeed, the human race has really made its mark. One enormous plastic patch is estimated to weigh over 3 million tons altogether and cover an area roughly twice the size of Texas.
Ten days ago it was reported that there was a small chance of us witnessing an asteroid collision with Mars. According to NASA's Near-Earth Object Office at the Jet Propulsion Laboratory in Pasadena, Calif., asteroid 2007 WD5 was on a trajectory to intersect with sometime this coming January.
Can dolphins sue a Japanese Firm? A legal debate is brewing in the Philippines where two lawyers are acting in behalf of resident sea mammals. The “petitioners” include “toothed whales, dolphins, porpoises and other cetacean species” whose habitat has been disturbed by underwater blasting and drilling from a Japanese oil exploration firm.
Freeman Dyson -Institute for Advanced Studies, Princeton
Cornell University Professor Emeritus Thomas Gold, who for 20 years directed the Cornell Center for Radiophysics and Space Research, proposes the striking and controversial theory that "a full functioning... , feeding on hydrocarbons, exists deep within the earth, and that a primordial source of hydrocarbons lies even deeper."
In a follow up to our recent post "MIT Asks: Could Extraterrestrial Astronomers Detect Life on Earth," Eric Ford, an assistant professor of astronomy at the University of Florida asks: what if aliens were hunting life outside their own planet? Armed with telescopes only a bit bigger and more powerful than our own, could they peer through the vastness of space and zero in on Earth as a likely home to life?
Going ice-skating this winter? If so, you will be participating in the oldest known human powered means of transport. But hopefully you’ll be using more updated equipment then our ancient forebears enjoyed. Archaeological evidence shows that bone skates (skates made of animal bones) are the oldest human powered means of transport, dating back to 3000 BC. Most likely when an ancient Finn glided along on his rugged homemade bone skates, he never imagined his clever innovation was destined to evolve into a precise, competitive winter sport and art-form beloved the world over.
In what will be a great boon to the fields of chemistry, biology, and physics among others sciences, a unique electron microscope has been developed that can create four-dimensional “movies” of actual molecules. This laser-lined ultrafast electron microscope is located at California Institute of Technology, and is the world’s first and only microscope that can perform such a feat, according to an article in Chemical & Engineering News. Scientists used to have to rely on models and representations for such images, but can now see actual pictures showing exactly what molecules, cells, and proteins really look like and how they move and interact.