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April 2009
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Intelligent Robots Will Explore Milky Way by 2020 -A Galaxy Insight

Shutterstock_2312404_2_3_2 Before the year 2020, scientists are expected to launch intelligent space robots that will venture out to explore the universe for us.

"Robotic exploration probably will always be the trail blazer for human exploration of far space," says Wolfgang Fink, physicist and researcher at Caltech. "We haven't yet landed a human being on Mars but we have a robot there now. In that sense, it's much easier to send a robotic explorer. When you can take the human out of the loop, that is becoming very exciting."

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Mega-Gadget: Igniting the Power of Stars on Earth

Nif The National Ignition Facility, a man-made machine designed to recreate the power source of stars, will be dedicated today. If all goes as planned, the facility’s 192 lasers — made of nearly 60 miles of mirrors and fiber optics, crystals and light amplifiers — will fire as one to smash a fleck of hydrogen fuel smaller than a match head. Compressed and heated to temperatures hotter than those of the Sun, the hydrogen atoms will fuse into helium, releasing bursts of thermonuclear energy.

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New 3-D Technology To Read Messages & Scrolls From Vesuvius Eruption in 79 A.D.

Mount_vesuvius Computer scientists are working on a way to read the unreadable - and we're not talking about silicon Zen masters, or building a machine to deal with Twilight novels the way we have ones for toxic waste.  A stockpile of papyrus scrolls pose the ultimate Roman Empire tease: they're an irreplaceable treasure trove of antiquity, but they're so fragile even unrolling will destroy them.  Modern technology might now open this ancient door.

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Ghost Beacon Signals Site of Massive Black Hole -One Billion Supernovas Massive!

Hdf_420 Bill Murray and Dan Aykroyd don't need to suit up for this one. NASA's Chandra X-ray Observatory has found a cosmic "ghost," and scientists think it is evidence of a huge eruption produced by a supermassive black hole equal in power to a billion supernovas. The source, HDF 130, is over 10 billion light years away and existed at a time 3 billion years after the Big Bang, when galaxies and black holes were forming at a high rate.

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Vulcans Nixed: You Can’t Have Logic Without Emotion -A Galaxy Classic

TPolnackt Fifty years ago some young MIT scholars delivered a radical notion to the world. They proposed that it is possible to scientifically study precise mechanisms and processes of human thought. The movement was the catalyst for many fields of study.

Now after a generation of productive research, a newer paradigm shift is taking place. Science is discovering that it is our emotions that make thought possible, not the other way around. We simply cannot understand thought without understanding emotion. This is a radical departure from the traditional perspective, which used to regard emotion as the antagonist of reason.

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Art of DNA Graffitti: Coding Bacteria With Secret Messages

Dnagraffiti1You might think an inner thigh tattoo is a fairly intimate piece of writing, but scientists at the J. Craig Venter Institute (led by the obviously modest Dr J. Craig Venter) authored a message far more personally placed than that.  Famous for creating the first piece of synthetic bacteria DNA, we've since learned that they've autographed it.

In the most amazing piece of graffiti since Neil Armstrong scratched "Neil Was Here" in the moon (and if he didn't, he should have), the researchers encoded the name of researchers involved in the project into the very genetic coding of the organism itself.  The translation between DNA and our alphabet is based on the system whereby various amino acids are represented by letters.

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Why Did Mars Lose Its Atmosphere? NASA Robotic Mission to Seek Answer

Marsmap

NASA has been making a lot of headlines with recent discoveries on Mars, and fans of the red planet are in for good news: they're going again, bigger and better than ever.  There's the Mars Surface Laboratory, the ExoMars rover, and flying above them all will be MAVEN< which will make definitive scientific measurements of present-day atmospheric loss that will offer clues about the planet's history
 
"The loss of Mars' atmosphere has been an ongoing mystery," Doug McCuistion, director of the Mars Exploration Program at NASA Headquarters in Washington, said.

Mars has been balding like a middle-aged banker for some time now, a presumably thick and lustrous atmosphere which allowed surface water having been lost some time ago. Just why this should have happened, and what the current rate of loss is, are questions the MAVEN will hope to find answers to.

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VIDEO Interview with Director Guillermo del Toro About "The Strain" - a Vampiric Virus That Invades NYC

Virus strainA case of perfect timing? With the swine flu outbreaks in Manhattan, Guillermo del Toro director of Pan's Labyrinth, will published his first novel on June 2nd. He signed with HarperCollins to write a trilogy of books called The Strain about a vampiric virus that invades New York. The trilogy is co-written with thriller writer Chuck Hogan.

The Strain opens with the arrival of a transatlantic flight at JFK airport. Upon touchdown, all power and communication to the aircraft are lost and a mysterious sliver of black appears – in the form of a slowly opening door – on the plane's fuselage.

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