Jane Doe

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Steam's Winter Sale is hiding something, and the internet's on the case

Detectives are digging up clues for Valve's secret alternate reality game<p>When Valve launched its annual Steam Winter Sale just before Christmas, it secretly introduced something alongside it: an alternate reality game, which some customers-turned-amateur detectives are just now taking a crack …

North Pole

Getting Ready to Move to Mars

Scientists are hard at work preparing to create humanity’s second home.<p>One day, when earth is destroyed by war or rising seas or a wayward asteroid, humanity will be extinguished—and along with it reality television, baseball stadiums, and thousands of recipes for guacamole, with and without …

Women in Science

The Most Mysterious Star in Our Galaxy

Astronomers have spotted a strange mess of objects whirling around a distant star. Scientists who search for extraterrestrial civilizations are scrambling to get a closer look.<p>In the Northern hemisphere’s sky, hovering above the Milky Way, there are two constellations—Cygnus the swan, her wings …


Snake? Nope! A caterpillar that looks and acts like a snake for camouflage

You Don't Have To Kill Prostitutes In 'GTA V'

Here’s a small fact: You don’t have to go around killing everyone in <i>Grand Theft Auto V</i>. The game gives you an enormous amount of choice, at least outside of the main missions, in who you help shuffle off this mortal coil. It’s a game largely about choices, actually.<p>You can choose to abduct people …

11 Google Tricks That Will Change the Way You Search


APOD: The Infrared Visible Andromeda (2014 Dec 13) Image Credit: Subaru Telescope (NAOJ), Hubble Space Telescope (NASA, ESA, STScI), Mayall 4M Telescope (KPNO, NOAO), Digitized Sky Survey, Spitzer Space Telescope; Processing & Copyright: Robert Gendler http://apod.nasa.gov/apod/ap141213.html Explanation: This remarkable synthetic color composite image was assembled from archives of visible light and infrared astronomy image data. The field of view spans the Andromeda Galaxy (M31), a massive spiral a mere 2.5 million light-years away. In fact, with over twice the diameter of our own Milky Way, Andromeda is the largest nearby galaxy. Andromeda's population of bright young blue stars lie along its sweeping spiral arms, with the telltale reddish glow of star forming regions traced in space- and ground-based visible light data. But infrared data from the Spitzer Space Telescope, also blended directly into the detailed composite's red and green color channels, highlight the the lumpy dust lanes warmed by the young stars as they wind even closer to the galaxy's core. Otherwise invisible at optical wavelengths, the warm dust takes on orange hues. Two smaller companion galaxies, M110 (below) and M32 (above) are also included in the frame. http://www.naoj.org/ http://hla.stsci.edu/ http://www.noao.edu/kpno/ http://archive.stsci.edu/dss/ http://www.spitzer.caltech.edu/ http://www.robgendlerastropics.com/ Starship Asterisk* • APOD Discussion Page http://asterisk.apod.com/discuss_apod.php?date=141213 #APOD

Engineers create 'superomniphobic' texture capable of repelling all liquids

(Phys.org) —A pair of researchers from the UCLA Henry Samueli School of Engineering and Applied Science has created the first surface texture that …

Mysterious Roman God Baffles Experts

A sculpture of a mysterious, never-before-seen Roman deity has been unearthed in an ancient temple in Turkey.<p>The 1st century B.C. relief, of an …

Microsoft to unveil Windows 10 consumer features at January event

Consumer Preview is on the way<p>Microsoft is planning to detail the consumer features of Windows 10 at an event in January. While Microsoft will be present at the Consumer Electronics Show in early January, sources familiar with the company’s plans tell <i>The Verge</i> that Microsoft will hold a separate …

APOD: Portrait of NGC 281 (2014 Nov 28) Image Credit & Copyright: Martin Pugh http://apod.nasa.gov/apod/ap141128.html Explanation: Look through the cosmic cloud cataloged as NGC 281 and you might miss the stars of open cluster IC 1590. But, formed within the nebula, that cluster's young, massive stars ultimately power the pervasive nebular glow. The eye-catching shapes looming in this portrait of NGC 281 are sculpted columns and dense dust globules seen in silhouette, eroded by intense, energetic winds and radiation from the hot cluster stars. If they survive long enough, the dusty structures could also be sites of future star formation. Playfully called the Pacman Nebula because of its overall shape, NGC 281 is about 10,000 light-years away in the constellation Cassiopeia. This sharp composite image was made through narrow-band filters, combining emission from the nebula's hydrogen, sulfur, and oxygen atoms in green, red, and blue hues. It spans over 80 light-years at the estimated distance of NGC 281. http://www.martinpughastrophotography.id.au/ Starship Asterisk* • APOD Discussion Page http://asterisk.apod.com/discuss_apod.php?date=141128 #APOD

APOD: The Cat's Eye Nebula from Hubble (2014 Nov 09) Image Credit: NASA, ESA, HEIC, and The Hubble Heritage Team (STScI/AURA) http://apod.nasa.gov/apod/ap141109.html Explanation: To some, it may look like a cat's eye. The alluring Cat's Eye nebula, however, lies three thousand light-years from Earth across interstellar space. A classic planetary nebula, the Cat's Eye (NGC 6543) represents a final, brief yet glorious phase in the life of a sun-like star. This nebula's dying central star may have produced the simple, outer pattern of dusty concentric shells by shrugging off outer layers in a series of regular convulsions. But the formation of the beautiful, more complex inner structures is not well understood. Seen so clearly in this digitally sharpened Hubble Space Telescope image, the truly cosmic eye is over half a light-year across. Of course, gazing into this Cat's Eye, astronomers may well be seeing the fate of our sun, destined to enter its own planetary nebula phase of evolution ... in about 5 billion years. http://www.nasa.gov/ http://www.esa.int/ESA http://www.spacetelescope.org/about_us/heic/ http://heritage.stsci.edu/ http://www.stsci.edu/ http://www.aura-astronomy.org/ Starship Asterisk* • APOD Discussion Page http://asterisk.apod.com/discuss_apod.php?date=141109 #APOD