Victoria Brennan Fowler

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How to Make Friends, According to Science

To begin, don’t dismiss the humble acquaintance.<p>“What are friends for?” This isn’t a rhetorical question. Friendship is one of life’s most important features, and one too often taken for granted.<p>The human desire for companionship may feel boundless, but research suggests that our social capital is …

Psychology

Scientists find planets where life could have started just like it did on Earth

1/30 Earth from the ISS<p>2/30 Frosty slopes of Mars<p>3/30 Orion Capsule splashes down<p>4/30 The Soyuz TMA-15M rocket launch<p>5/30 Yellowstone from space<p>6/30 …

Astronomy

Asteroid zips by ahead of bigger one coming even closer

A bus-sized asteroid that was first discovered on September 24 ripped by Earth on Monday morning, coming as close as 54,100 miles (87,065 kilometers).<p>While 2017 SX17 sailed safely by us, the fly-by serves as a preview for an even bigger space rock set to pass even closer on the evening of October …

A hyperloop route may zip between Kansas City and St. Louis

The earliest hyperloop routes might not be limited to wealthy tech havens like California or the UAE. Missouri officials and Hyperloop One are seriously exploring the possibility of a hyperloop route that would run between Kansas City and St. Louis. In theory, the pod-based system would shuttle you …

An asteroid is about to squeak by Earth at an incredibly short distance

Giant, “planet-killer” asteroids are a huge concern for humanity simply because we don’t know if there’s anything we can actually do to stop them …

3 scientists just won the Nobel Prize for discovering how body clocks are regulated — here's why that's such a big deal

The thing that makes you a "morning person" or a "night owl" isn't an arbitrary preference or tendency. It's something that's fundamentally part of your biological makeup — and something that we ignore at our own peril.<p>On Monday, Jeffrey Hall, Michael Rosbash, and Michael Young were awarded the …

Nobel Prize

Sunken 8th continent reveals its buried secrets

A journey to plumb the remote ocean depths has revealed that Earth does indeed have an eighth continent.<p>A nine-week voyage took scientists from around the world to drill and explore the seafloor off New Zealand and Australia. They found evidence of land-based fossils, revealing that the ancient …

Try this trick to go straight to sleep

Each time you choose to stay up a little longer bingeing that Netflix show, you’re beckoning death, slowly cutting off years from your life. This was …

Body found at collapsed Mexico school; girl still trapped

MEXICO CITY (AP) — As painstaking attempts to reach survivors in quake-ravaged buildings across Mexico City stretched into a third day Thursday, desperation mounted among loved ones who earlier had high hopes for quick rescues and some complained they were being kept in the dark about search …

Natural Disasters

Are We About To See A Black Hole?

If there is one thing science is good for, it's going to extremes.<p>A lot of science's history is just one story after another of people figuring out how to do something that, just a few years before, was thought to be impossible.<p>The impossible was heavy on my mind last Wednesday as I found out just …

Scientists defy Einstein's prediction and use relativity to measure a star's mass

Astronomers scanning the skies with NASA's Hubble Space Telescope have pulled off a feat that even Albert Einstein had declared all but impossible: they've witnessed the subtle bending of one star's light by another star's gravity and used that distortion to measure a star's mass.<p>The findings, …

Universe

Scientists asked 5,500 Americans to reveal their 'relationship deal breakers' — here's what they learned

Apparently, many people do — and now those lists are not so secret anymore.<p>A series of studies on "relationship deal breakers," published last year in the journal Personality and Social Psychology Bulletin, represents "the first systematic and comprehensive attempt to understand the traits that …

Self-confidence

Scientists Discovered a New Type of Fire

When they appear in the wild they can be devastating, but in a controlled environment fire tornadoes are not only mesmerizing to watch, it turns out …

Elizabeth Lauten, GOP Aide Who Criticized Obama Daughters, To Resign

The Republican congressional aide who wrote a widely-disseminated Facebook post criticizing President Barack Obama's daughters says that she is resigning today.<p>Elizabeth Lauten, the communications director for Tennessee Rep. Steven Fincher, told NBC News by phone Monday that her resignation is …

GOP congressional majority likely to change way it crunches numbers

The incoming Republican majority in Congress is preparing to give number-crunching a controversial twist, and the new math could make it easier for the GOP to cut taxes.<p>For years, leading GOP lawmakers have wanted to change the way that the nonpartisan congressional staff calculates — or, in …

U.S. Congress

Lack of immigration plan flusters GOP

Party dithers while Obama pounds message defending action.<p>The GOP went to bed on Thursday night livid at President Barack Obama’s executive actions that would shield millions of undocumented immigrants from deportation. They warned the president is setting up a “constitutional crisis,” panned his …

The House Republicans Finally Sued Obama

Speaker John Boehner responded to the president's immigration announcement by filing his long-promised legal challenge over the Affordable Care Act.<p>How did House Republicans respond to President Obama's speech announcing his decision to circumvent Congress on immigration? They sued him, but not …

Sen. Jeff Sessions: 'We're Not Going To Impeach President Obama'

WASHINGTON -- Sen. Jeff Sessions (R-Ala.) took impeachment over President Barack Obama's immigration action off the table on Friday.<p>"No, we're not going to impeach President Obama. Or have a move to impeach," Sessions said at a Heritage Foundation event and then added, "The president has certain …

For Obama, a long road to immigration order

WASHINGTON (AP) — President Barack Obama's carefully cultivated Hispanic coalition was starting to splinter.<p>Immigration legislation on Capitol Hill …

Senate Fails To Curtail NSA Monitoring Of Citizens

Intelligence agency can keep collecting bulk phone data about Americans, for now.<p>The National Security Agency still has the authority to collect wide-ranging metadata about your phone calls—at least for now. A controversial bill aimed at reforming the intelligence agency failed to pass the U.S. …

Legal Challenges To Obama's Deportation Relief Are Probably Doomed, Experts Say

President Barack Obama's planned executive action that would reportedly offer deportation relief to millions of undocumented immigrants is based on uncontroversial and widely accepted legal foundations, experts said.<p>It won’t be possible to fully assess Obama’s executive action until Thursday, when …

Obama to announce immigration plan Thursday

WASHINGTON — President Obama will use a Thursday speech to roll out new executive orders that could grant legal status to millions of migrants now in the country illegally, officials said Wednesday.<p>In a video announcement posted on Facebook and on the White House website, Obama said he will address …

Keystone bill dies in the Senate -- for now

The Senate blocked a measure Tuesday that would have authorized construction of the Keystone XL pipeline as Democrats chose their pro-environment base over an old friend -- embattled Louisiana Sen. Mary Landrieu.<p>The vote could just be a speedbump for the Keystone project, with Republicans ready to …

It's Official: Mitch McConnell (Unanimously) is Senate Majority Leader-Elect

Sen. Mitch McConnell of Kentucky has been elected unanimously as Majority Leader-elect by the Senate Republican Conference during their closed-door leadership elections.<p>McConnell was nominated by Sen. Kelly Ayotte of New Hampshire, and his nomination was seconded by Sen-elect Tom Cotton of Arkansas.<p>…

HUFPOLLSTER: A Closer Look At Voter Turnout

<i>Turnout emerges as a theme in explaining what went wrong for Democrats last week. We round up some initial looks at how it affected the most surprising midterm results. And if you're not already ready for 2016, apparently you're in the minority. This is HuffPollster for Monday, November 10,</b> …

The turnout statistic Republicans hate most

In his post-election press conference, President Obama mentioned in his opening remarks, “[T]o everyone who voted, I want you to know that I hear …

Voter Turnout in Midterm Elections Hits 72-Year Low

The last time voter turnout for a national election was as low as it was on Nov.4, Hitler was still in power, and Mitch McConnell was only nine …

Republican concedes San Diego congressional race to incumbent Democrat

Republican challenger Carl DeMaio has conceded defeat in the tough, expensive race against incumbent Rep.<p>Scott Peters(D-San Diego).<p>DeMaio made his concession in an interview Sunday with the Associated Press, which on Friday had declared Peters the winner in the 52nd Congressional District.<p>DeMaio …

What 2014 Means for 2016 Congressional Elections

The 2014 elections probably won’t have any effect on the 2016 presidential contest, but they will have an effect on that year's congressional races. …