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May 18 2015

UFO Spotted Circling Mysterious Lights on Ceres


The mysterious lights on the dwarf planet Ceres are apparently of interest to more than just the Dawn spacecraft currently in orbit around it. New photographs of the lights show what appears to be a UFO circling the area and performing some impressive maneuvers. Is NASA going to make a statement on this one or resort to another viewer poll?


Related: UFO Over San Diego Unexplained, TV Station Uncooperative
Related: Past Tense Oregon: UFO photos taken near McMinnville in 1950 still raise questions
Related: UFO expert spots disk-shaped craft speeding high above the Australian desert - and says he has had 500 close encounters

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May 18 2015

Computer program rivals top poker players in complex card game


The inaugural battle between human and machine in heads-up no-limit Texas Hold’em poker has ended in a statistical draw.

After playing 80,000 hands between April 24 and May 8, a computer program called Claudico amassed slightly fewer chips than its opponents, four top-10 poker professionals; however, the deficit was not large enough to determine conclusively that the computer was the weaker player.

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May 18 2015

Wounded turtle can return to the ocean thanks to a 3D-printed beak


Look, we know this sea turtle's prosthetic beak has a tragic backstory, but it sure makes the reptile look like it has a future as a badass pizza-loving mutant. According to 3D Printing Industry, Turkish animal rescuers found it almost lifeless at sea, after a boat propeller shaved off a huge part of its snout. It escaped the clutches of death thanks to those kind folks, but a turtle that has to be hand-fed can never survive back in the wild.

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May 18 2015

After 10,000 years giant Antarctic ice-shelf will be gone by 2020, Nasa report says


Antarctica's Larsen B ice-shelf is on course to disintegrate completely within the next five years, according to a new study by Nasa, the US space agency.

The 10,000-year-old ice shelf, which partially collapsed in 2002, is “quickly weakening” and likely to “disintegrate completely” before the end of the decade, researchers predicted, after observing warning signs including large developing cracks and faster-flowing tributary glaciers.

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May 18 2015

How to make oxygen on Mars: Nasa plans to use bacteria and algae to help support a human colony


If humans land on Mars in the 2030s as planned, one thing that will be essential to their survival will be self-sufficiency, as they won’t be able to take too much cargo with them.

With this in mind Nasa is testing whether oxygen can be created from Martian soil, without having to carry it all the way from Earth.

The innovative method would see bacteria or algae use the soil as fuel, pumping out usable oxygen in the process for astronauts on the surface.

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May 18 2015

Rocky Planets May Have Formed from Tiny Particle Clusters


Clumps of small, glassy particles may be responsible for the formation of giant asteroids and the planetary "embryos" that collided to form rocky planets like Earth, a new study suggests.

Asteroid fragments that fall to Earth as meteorites often contain tiny, round pellets known as chondrules that formed when molten droplets quickly cooled in outer space during the solar system's early years. Chondrules are found in 92 percent of all meteorites.

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May 18 2015

Make you famous: Can your star sign predict your chance of becoming a celebrity?


Your month of birth could affect whether or not you become a celebrity, according to one academic study.

The implication is that astrological signs could indicate how likely a person is to be successful.

While the study concludes that "distant star clusters do not exert mystical effects on earthly events", it does suggest that astrological signs may be a guide to potential celebrity.

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May 18 2015

To perform under pressure, research finds that welcoming anxiety is more helpful than calming down


Imagine that you work for an organization with hundreds of employees and you’re about to give a presentation to the entire group. The CEO and all the board members are in the audience. You’ve been anxious about this talk all week, and now your heart is pounding. Your palms are sweating. Your mouth feels dry.

What is the best thing to do in this moment? Should you try to calm down or try to feel excited?

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May 18 2015

Kids know to use ‘indoor voice’ at age 2


Toddlers as young as two understand that the noises they make can affect people around them—and know how to adapt the loudness of the sounds they make depending on what they’re doing and where they are.

“This research tells us more about what young children are capable of understanding,” says lead author Rebecca Williamson, assistant psychology professor at Georgia State University. “It means that it’s developmentally appropriate to talk to two-year-olds about hearing and ask them to be quiet—it’s not out of their grasp to understand this.”.

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May 18 2015

On a noisy airplane, some foods taste different


In noisy situations—like the 85 decibels passengers are exposed to while on an airplane—foods rich in umami flavor get a major boost, but sweet tastes are suppressed.

Umami describes the savory taste of amino acids such as glutamate in foods like tomato juice.

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May 17 2015

Mozart-loving chickens may answer quest for healthier nugget


In barns filled with classical music and lighting that changes to match the hues outside, rows of chickens are fed a diet rich in probiotics, a regimen designed to remove the need for the drugs and chemicals that have tainted the global food chain.

As food giants face growing pressure to offer healthier produce, Southeast Asian poultry firm Kee Song Group says its use of "good" bacteria in feed and water means it can meet one the industry's biggest challenges: how to mass produce drug and hormone-free poultry at a reasonable price.

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May 17 2015

Researchers find equines express emotion through their whinnies


Horses express their emotions through whinnies - and are surprising adept at it, researchers have found.

Swiss researchers found horse whinnies are made of two different fundamental frequencies.

This allows horses to express both positive and negative emotions, and at the same time convey the strength of these emotions.

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May 17 2015

Bad memories drive lab rats to rescue drenched companions faster


Looking like a drowned rat? Never fear, a dry rat may come to your rescue.

An experiment testing whether empathy can drive behaviour in rats has found that, when a dry rat observes a distressed rat trapped in a wet chamber, it will free it from its cage.

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May 17 2015

New Japan volcano island 'natural lab' for life


A brand new island emerging off the coast of Japan offers scientists a rare opportunity to study how life begins to colonise barren land—helped by rotting bird poo and hatchling vomit.

Researchers say bird waste will be the secret ingredient to kickstart Mother Nature's grand experiment on what is a still active volcano that only poked its head above the waves in November 2013.

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May 17 2015

Ecuador Breaks Guinness Reforestation Record


Ecuador broke a world record for reforestation Saturday, as thousands of people pitched in to plant 647,250 trees of more than 200 species, President Rafael Correa said.

"I have just been informed that we have broken the Guinness record for reforestation," the president said in his weekly address.

Correa said the seedlings were planted all over Ecuador, which boasts varied geography from its Pacific coast, high Andean peaks and low Amazon basin areas.

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May 17 2015

Yoga and chronic pain have opposite effects on brain gray matter


Chronic pain is known to cause brain anatomy changes and impairments, but yoga can be an important tool for preventing or even reversing the effects of chronic pain on the brain, according to a National Institutes of Health (NIH) official speaking at the American Pain Society's annual meeting.

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May 17 2015

How Aboriginal plant extracts might treat diabetes


A new study has found that traditional Aboriginal and Indian plant extracts could be used to manage type 2 diabetes by reducing instances of weight gain, hypertension and immune suppression.

Diabetes is one of the fastest growing metabolic diseases in the world, so coming up with better treatment options has never been more important. Especially since current drugs are known to cause weight gain, making them far from optimal for patients to use long-term.

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