Dooms Dage

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APOD: The Sombrero Galaxy from Hale (2013 Jul 15) Image Credit & Copyright: Caltech/Palomar Observatory/ Paul Gardner, Salvatore Grasso, and Ryan Hannahoe Explanation: What's going on in the center of this spiral galaxy? Named the Sombrero Galaxy for its hat-like resemblance, M104 features a prominent dust lane and a bright halo of stars and globular clusters. Reasons for the Sombrero's hat-like appearance include an unusually large and extended central bulge of stars, and dark prominent dust lanes that appear in a disk that we see nearly edge-on. Billions of old stars cause the diffuse glow of the extended central bulge visible in the above image from the 200-inch Hale Telescope. Close inspection of the central bulge shows many points of light that are actually globular clusters. M104's spectacular dust rings harbor many younger and brighter stars, and show intricate details astronomers don't yet fully understand. The very center of the Sombrero glows across the electromagnetic spectrum, and is thought to house a large black hole. Fifty million-year-old light from the Sombrero Galaxy can be seen with a small telescope towards the constellation of Virgo. Starship Asterisk* • APOD Discussion Page #APOD

The Best LeMons Race Car So Far: The Homer from "The Simpsons"! – Feature

We love it when LeMons teams build a piece of vehicular sculpture so amazing that we don’t even care how well it performs on the race track— say, the Spirit of LeMons road-racing Cessna 310 or the Nutjob Racing air-stairs race car— and in fact those cars mostly prove weirdly competent on a road …

Google Street View adds abandoned Japanese island that inspired 'Skyfall'

Google Street View has extended its reach to the abandoned island of Hashima, Japan, which served as the setting for Raoul Silva's "Dead City" retreat in <i>007: Skyfall</i>, the latest James Bond movie. Also known as Gunkanjima (Battleship Island) because of its resemblance to a warship when seen in …

Infographic: The Literal Meaning Of Every State Name In The U.S.

Washington translates to “Marsh Farm Land, Missouri to “Land of the People with Dugout Canoes.” What does your state or city name mean? You may not want to know.<p>The New Navel of the Moon. It’s so poetic, isn’t it? (And sure, maybe a bit anatomically confusing.) That’s the real meaning behind the …

The Evolution of Superman

If Henry Cavill's Superman in the new <i>Man of Steel</i> looks unfamiliar to you – both in his new suit (in muted colors, without the traditional red outer …

Man of Steel

How to Find the Best Sunglasses for Your Face Shape

Everyone looks good in wayfarers, but find out who looks great in aviators.<p>Finding a flattering pair of sunglasses can be slog, but with this advice you'll be able to pick the frames that complement your face in a snap. And if you're still unsure, here's a pro top: <i>everyone</i> looks good in a classic …

Miu Miu

What the Night Sky Would Look Like If the Other Planets Were as Close as the Moon

It's not always easy to imagine just how big the other planets are. Here, a space artist's thought experiment turns into a lesson in Earth's relative size.<p>Space artist Ron Miller has created a series of images that illustrate the sizes of the other planets in our solar system in a way that makes …

Watch 6 Wondrous Clouds Float Inside Museum Walls

Like a magician, Berndnaut Smilde conjures up miniature indoor clouds.<p>Anyone who has tried drawing or painting clouds knows that they’re incredibly difficult to reproduce in pictorial form. Well, that can’t actually be tougher than making them, right? In the last few years, artist Berndnaut Smilde …

There's a super moon at the end of the road

Beautiful Games: drag-racing fever

AMMO: Cross Section Photos of Bullets

In October of 2012, LA-based photographer Sabine Pearlman found herself ensconced in a Swiss WWII bunker photographing 900 different “specimens” of …

The Evolution of King James

LeBron explains how he transformed himself into a ruthlessly efficient scoring machine<p>Just a few months after his 28th birthday, LeBron James is on …

Best Trips 2013

Got wanderlust? We’ve got your ticket. The National Geographic Traveler editors present the new year's 20 must-see places.

Travel Photography

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Congrats LeBron James on the back-to-back championship wins.

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