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Science in the News Weekly

NASA Solicits Citizen Coders

NASA has launched a competition to find "space apps" to aid space exploration and education. The two-day event brought programmers together on seven continents to see how creative they could be with NASA's store of space data. Problems NASA wants solved include improving data sharing after disasters and spotting good lunar landing sites. ...

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Kentucky 'Godzillus' Fossil Puzzles Experts

A 150-pound fossil recovered last year in northern Kentucky is puzzling experts, who are trying to determine whether it was an animal, a mineral or a form of plant life from a time when the Cincinnati region was underwater. Scientists say the fossil is 450 million years old. ...

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Science at the Top of the News for April 23-27

An opinion piece from Wired Science on how science failed during the Gulf oil disaster was the most-viewed story last week by subscribers to Science in the News Daily. Other top stories included a look at six new molecules that can carry genes and how tiny electric cars are catching on in China. Subscribe for free daily updates.

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Early Peril for Newton's Principia

The Guardian recounted the story of how a book about fish nearly sank Isaac Newton's Principia. The lavishly illustrated Historia Piscium, or History of Fishes, by John Ray and Francis Willughby, was so expensive that it forced the Royal Society to withdraw from its promise to finance publication of Newton's Principia, one of the most important works in the history of science. ...

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At AAPA Meeting, a Fossil Show-and-Tell

The annual meeting of the American Association of Physical Anthropologists in Portland last week featured an exhibition of plaster casts of skulls, bones and teeth of important members of the human family. The fossils included the partial skeletons of Lucy from Ethiopia; Australopithecus sediba from South Africa; and the fingernail-size sliver of bone of a new type of archaic human from Siberia. ...

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A Glimpse of an Early Galaxy

By taking advantage of a rare cosmic zoom lens--in which the gravity of a large mass magnifies light from objects in the distant background--a team of researchers has spotted a galaxy so remote its light was emitted just 490 million years after the Big Bang, when the Universe was a mere 3.6% of its current age. ...

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Science at the Top of the News for April 16-20

The most-viewed news story last week by subscribers to Science in the News concerned a predator-proof fence that is helping to restore a corner of Hawaii to a pristine state and proving a boon for scientists and bird-watchers. The New York Times looked at an innovation in highway bridge-building that cuts months, if not years, off construction. And it has been revealed that Scottish people have extraordinary DNA. Subscribe for free daily updates.

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Audio: Harder-Than-Diamond Carbon

The invention of Q-carbon—widely reported about a year ago—is out of the lab. One of its first real-world tests: a go-kart race in North Carolina.... (click the link above to read more).

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