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November 29 2014

Time cloak used to hide messages in laser light


A "time cloak" that conceals events rather than objects can hide secret messages through a trick of light, making information invisible to all but the intended recipient.

Like an invisibility cloak that makes something disappear in plain sight, a time cloak makes an event disappear in time. It works by manipulating light traveling along an optical fibre.

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November 29 2014

Female termites found to clone themselves via asexual reproduction


A pair of researches with Kyoto University has found how the queen of one species of termite, Reticulitermes speratus, ensures her genetic lineage continues by creating duplicate copies of herself.


Related: Hermaphrodite snail named after marriage equality

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November 29 2014

More Than 300 Spiders Pretend to Be Ants


Tarantulas and black widows may cause human Miss Muffets to get off their tuffets, but several studies show that many spiders themselves run for their lives if they encounter Myrmarachne melanotarsa, a gregarious jumping spider that pretends to be an ant.


Related: Bumba lennoni: New Species of Tarantula Discovered in Brazil, Named after John Lennon
Related: Mysterious 'Glow Worm' Found in Peruvian Rainforest

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November 29 2014

Robot subs find Antarctic sea ice thicker than expected


The plot thickens, or should it be the ice? The most detailed and comprehensive 3D map so far of Antarctica's winter sea ice shows that big parts of it are much thicker and more smashed-up than we thought, in fact, three times as thick. Data from this map will help us fill in some of the biggest gaps in our global climate models.


Related: Underwater robot produces first precise map of Antarctic sea ice depth

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November 29 2014

Geoengineering the planet: first experiments take shape


Proposals for the first trials to cool the planet include cloud brightening and spraying aerosols into the ozone layer. They might start in just two years.


Related: Geoengineering our climate is not a 'quick fix'

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November 29 2014

Explaining Rare 'Hole Punch' Cloud With Rainbow in the Middle


Residents of Wonthaggi, Australia (map) snapped pictures of a rare, rainbow-filled "hole punch" cloud on Monday. By the next day, the photos had gone viral with speculation about the unusual phenomenon overhead.


Related: A Month of UFO Sightings in Colorado’s San Luis Valley
Related: Another UFO Over a Nuclear Plant, This Time in Arkansas
Related: Boomerang UFO Zigzags Over NH
Related: Ex-NASA Worker Claims She Saw Humans on Mars in 1979

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November 29 2014

14 students “possessed”


CEBU, Philippines - At least 14 students of Toong Integrated School in the mountain barangay of Toong, Cebu City were allegedly possessed by evil spirits yesterday noon.


Alt: Mass Exorcisms Performed on Students in the Philippines
Related: Priest Confirms Exorcism Recorded Through Keyhole is Real

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November 29 2014

Does Gratitude Bring Happiness?


When Americans sit down to their Thanksgiving feast, many will take a moment to focus on what they are grateful for.

But psychologists, religious leaders and scientists have said that this practice should be more than a once-a-year tradition. In fact, many think that gratitude is the key to happiness.

“Grateful attention is the key to joy,” said Br. David Steindl-Rast, co-founder of A Network for Grateful Living.

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November 29 2014

How baby talk gives your child the best start in life


THERE is only one real rule to conversing with a baby: talking is better than not talking. But that one rule can make a lifetime of difference.

That's the message that the US state of Georgia hopes to send with Talk With Me Baby, a public health programme devoted to the art of baby talk. Starting in January, nurses will be trained in the best way to speak to babies to help them learn language, based on what the latest neuroscience says. Then they, along with teachers and nutritionists, will model this good behaviour for the parents they meet.

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November 29 2014

Prehistoric conflict hastened human brain’s capacity for collaboration, study says


Warfare not only hastened human technological progress and vast social and political changes, but may have greatly contributed to the evolutionary emergence of humans’ high intelligence and ability to work together toward common goals, according to a new study from the National Institute for Mathematical and Biological Synthesis (NIMBioS).

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November 29 2014

Aztec manuscript under the microscope


This extraordinary document, referred to as the Codex Borbonicus in reference to the Palais Bourbon, seat of the lower house of the French parliament, is one of France’s national treasures. It is one of six documents – an original parchment dating from the trial of Joan of Arc, a ninth-century Bible, two Rousseau manuscripts and the Serment du Jeu de Paume (Tennis Court oath) – that have not been allowed out of the country since the 1960s. Does it predate Cortés? Or, as suggested by the catalogue of a 2008 exhibition at Quai Branly, is it a colonial-era manuscript, resulting from the clash between Meso-American and western cultures?

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November 29 2014

3,500-Year-Old Dagger Found Being Used As A Doorstop


One person's trash turned out to be a national treasure. Back in 2002, a farmer leaving near East Rudham, Norfolk, in the United Kingdom, dug up a large bronze object that looked like a bent sword.

Not thinking much of it, the unnamed farmer used it as a doorstop for 12 years before deciding to throw it away, according to Dr. Tim Pestell, senior curator of archaeology at Norwich Castle.

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November 29 2014

Stone age axe found with wood handle


Archaeologists in Denmark have uncovered an incredibly rare find: a stone age axe held within its wooden handle.

The 5,500-year-old Neolithic axe was found during archaeological surveys ahead of a multi-billion euro tunnel project.

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November 29 2014

Ancient dental plaque: a ‘whey’ into our milk drinking past?


We drink milk because it is good for us, but we rarely stop to think “Why?” Archaeologists and geneticists have been puzzling this question since it was revealed that the mutations which enable adults to drink milk are under the strongest selection of any in the human genome.

These mutations cause the intestinal enzyme lactase - which digests lactose milk sugar during infancy - to continue to be produced long after weaning. This lactase persistence is prevalent only in some populations around the world such as in Northern Europe.

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November 29 2014

New age of the Lantian Homo erectus cranium extending to about 1.63 million years ago


According to paper published online November 20 in the Journal of Human Evolution, the age of the Lantian Homo erectus cranium from Gongwangling, Lantian County, Shaanxi Province, China, is likely half a million years older than previously thought. Earlier estimates dated this important fossil, which was found in 1964, to 1.15 million years ago. A research team of Chinese and British scientists, have provided compelling evidence that the fossil should be dated to 1.63 million years ago, making it the oldest fossil hominin cranium known in northeast Asia, and the second oldest site with cranial remains outside Africa.

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November 28 2014

"Great Surprise"—Native Americans Have West Eurasian Origins


Nearly one-third of Native American genes come from west Eurasian people linked to the Middle East and Europe, rather than entirely from East Asians as previously thought, according to a newly sequenced genome.

Based on the arm bone of a 24,000-year-old Siberian youth, the research could uncover new origins for America's indigenous peoples, as well as stir up fresh debate on Native American identities, experts say.

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November 28 2014

23,000-year-old statue of woman with large breasts and buttocks found in France


A 23,000-year-old statue of a woman hailed as a “masterpiece” has been discovered in France

The 12cm sculpture was found on an archaeological site in Amiens. It shows a woman with large breasts and buttocks, the AFP news agency reported, adding that the head and arms were less detailed.

Nicole Phoyu-Yedid, the head of cultural affairs in the area, told the news agency: “The discovery of this masterpiece is exceptional and internationally significant.”.

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