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  • NASA Rover Finds Mysterious Methane Emissions on Mars

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    NASA's Mars Curiosity rover has measured a tenfold spike in methane, an organic chemical, in the atmosphere around it and detected other organic molecules in a rock-powder sample collected by the robotic laboratory’s drill.
    "This temporary increase in methane -- sharply up and then back down -- tells us there must be some relatively localized source," said Sushil Atreya of the University of Michigan, Ann Arbor, and Curiosity rover science team. "There are many possible sources, biological or non-biological, such as interaction of water and rock."
    Researchers used Curiosity’s onboard Sample Analysis at Mars (SAM) laboratory a dozen times in a 20-month period to sniff methane in the atmosphere. During two of those months, in late 2013 and early 2014, four measurements averaged seven parts per billion. Before and after that, readings averaged only one-tenth that level.
    Curiosity also detected different Martian organic chemicals in powder drilled from a rock dubbed Cumberland, the first definitive detection of organics in surface materials of Mars. These Martian organics could either have formed on Mars or been delivered to Mars by meteorites.
    Organic molecules, which contain carbon and usually hydrogen, are chemical building blocks of life, although they can exist without the presence of life. Curiosity's findings from analyzing samples of atmosphere and rock powder do not reveal whether Mars has ever harbored living microbes, but the findings do shed light on a chemically active modern Mars and on favorable conditions for life on ancient Mars. [ NASA ]

    Woman Walks Dog Dressed as Abominable Snowman

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    FOX 11 found the woman dressed as an abominable snowman and her poodle, Blizzard, on Libal Street in Allouez.

    Harris Tweed Hebrides created a 'Smart Fabric' Infused With the Scent of Johnnie Walker Black Whisky

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    Two of Scotland's iconic brands - Johnnie Walker Black Label and Harris Tweed Hebrides - have collaborated to create a 'fabric of flavour', where the material smells of whisky. The aroma will even be able to withstand dry cleaning. The tweed is said to have key notes of 'rich malt, golden vanilla, red fruit and the trademark dark chocolate tones.'
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    Orion Is Going Home

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    Captured on December 5th, somewhere on the infinite Pacific Ocean,  this image shows the Orion crew module in the well deck of the amphibious transport dock ship USS Anchorage after Navy divers recovered it following the first and flawless exploration flight test.
    "PACIFIC OCEAN (Dec. 5, 2014) The Orion crew module is in the well deck of the amphibious transport dock ship USS Anchorage (LPD 23). Navy divers assigned to Explosive Ordnance Disposal Mobile Unit  (EODMU) 11 and Mobile Diving and Salvage Company 11‐7, recovered the module during the Orion Program's first exploration flight test. (U.S. Navy photo by Mass Communication Specialist 1st Class Gary Keen/Released)"
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    Shell 'art' made 300,000 years before humans evolved

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    THE artist – if she or he can be called that – was right-handed and used a shark's tooth. They had a remarkably steady hand and a strong arm. Half a million years ago, on the banks of a calm river in central Java, they scored a deep zigzag into a clam shell.
    We will never know what was going on inside its maker's head, but the tidy, purposeful line (pictured above right) has opened a new window into the origins of our modern creative mind.
    It was found etched into the shell of a fossilised freshwater clam, and is around half a million years old – making the line by far the oldest engraving ever found. The date also means it was made two to three hundred thousand years before our own species evolved, by a more ancient hominin, Homo erectus.
    Big Pic.

    This is What Astronauts Will Eat For Thanksgiving

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    This is what the American astronauts aboard the ISS will be feasting on today.
    "NASA Commentator Pat Ryan talks with International Space Station Food System Manager Vickie Kloeris about the types of food that are prepared for crews on orbit and the selections available for the Expedition 42 Thanksgiving celebration."
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    Gaint Atlantic Halibut

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    This huge Atlantic halibut whopping weight 233kg (515 lbs), seems to exceed the length 2.6m. (Until the record 190kg)(Google translated)

    Amazon Echo

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    Amazon has announced Echo, a voice-activated digital assistant device. A pleasant robotic voice to answer your questions.
    "Amazon Echo is always ready, connected, and fast. Just ask for information, music, news, weather, and more. Echo is controlled by your voice for hands-free convenience and is connected to the cloud so it's always getting smarter."
    Amazon is currently offering invite-only sales of Echo at the price of $199. Amazon Prime users can buy one for $99, but will also have to request an invitation.
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    HairCuts with a Samurai Sword

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    Nguyen Hoang Hung is a hairstylist in Vietnam. He cut hair without scissors, uses a Samurai sword Wakizashi —a short sword of Japanese origin. Check out the video!
    [ Photo: Ngoisao ]
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    2014 Beard and Mustache Championships

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    The 2014 World Beard and Moustache Championships crowned 18 title winners, took place on  October 25th at the Keller Auditorium in Portland, Oregon. The competition was held at the Portland Marriott Downtown Waterfront and Keller Auditorium. Judges ranked contestants in a variety of categories ranging from "Dali," "Fu Manchue," "Freestyle Full Beard" among many others. The competition features 18 categories across three divisions; Moustaches, Partial Beards and Full Beards. Each category features three prizes for the best facial hair. More pics after more.
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    Want to Prove You're a Man? Wearing These Gloves Will Turn You Into A Real Man

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    When can a man declare that he is already a man? How's this for a manhood initiation? A tribe in the Amazon forest has you put your hand into a glove that has bullet ants.
    "These ants look like black, wingless wasps and their length can range between half-an-inch to an inch. The scarier thing about this bullet ant's sting is the toxins, neurotoxin and poneratoxin, which freeze the transmission of information by the nerve cells. The venom also causes uncontrollable shaking and throbbing pain that'll last for days. The scariest is, the Mawé boys don't need to get stung only once but many times more, from months to years"
    [ Pic: Pennsylvania State University]
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    Paralysed man walks again after cell transplant

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    Darek Fidyka, who was paralysed from the chest down in a knife attack in 2010, can now walk using a frame.
    The treatment, a world first, was carried out by surgeons in Poland in collaboration with scientists in London
    .
    Details of the research are published in the journal Cell Transplantation.
    How the injury was treated
    1) One of the patient's two olfactory bulbs was removed and the olfactory ensheathing cells (OECs) were grown in culture
    2) 100 micro injections of OECs were made above and below the damaged area of the spinal cord
    3) Four strips of nerve tissue were placed across an 8mm gap in the spinal cord. The scientists believe the OECs acted as a pathway to stimulate the spinal cord cells to regenerate, using the nerve grafts as a bridge to cross the severed cord

    NASA Considers Hibernation Option To Reach Mars

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    You've seen it in several science fiction movies: Hibernation, or deep sleep. Nasa is backing plans to potentially put astronauts in a deep sleep during manned missions to Mars.
    The proposal would see a crew 'hibernate' for up to 180 days, allowing them to make the journey of 350 million miles (560 million km) with a reduced need for food and water. The crew would be kept alive through intravenous feeding, before being woken at their destination by inhalation of a coolant gas.
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    New SCUBA dive depth record set: 1090 feet

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    Egyptian diver Ahmed Gabr dove to 1090 feet, setting a new SCUBA record. He spent 12 minutes achieving the depth, and the next 14 hours decompressing.
    "The record-breaking dive took place last week, when Ahmed Gabr plunged about 1,090 feet into the Red Sea off the coast of Dahab, Egypt. "

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    Skeleton Couple Still Holding Hands After 700 Years

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    From Discovery: The skeletal remains of two lovebirds were uncovered, after being locked in a romantic embrace for the past 700 years.
    Archeologists found the happy couple holding hands in an earthen grave during an excavation of a "lost" chapel in Leicestershire, England, researchers reported Thursday (Sept. 18).
     "We have seen similar skeletons before from Leicester where a couple has been buried together in a single grave," Vicki Score, University of Leicester Archaeological Services (ULAS) project manager, said in a statement.