Originally published on Tue October 1, 2013 11:34 am
Scientists are reasonably sure that it's a cloudy day on Kepler-7b, a planet that orbits its star about 1,000 light-years away from us.
Using NASA's orbiting space telescopes, researchers publishing in Astrophysical Journal Letters say that for the first time they've been able to make a rudimentary map of the atmosphere of an extrasolar planet.
The team used faint visible light and infrared reflections from Kepler-7b to make their cloud map.
The quartet on jazz bassist Dave Holland's new album Prism is more electrified, and usually louder, than bands he's led before. Some reviewers see its music coming out of his early work with the electrified Miles Davis, but the parallel doesn't go far. Holland played bass guitar with Davis, not his usual bass violin. Plus, early electric Davis was gloriously unruly, while Holland loves the elegance of interlocking rhythm cycles, wheels within wheels.
Originally published on Tue October 1, 2013 10:29 am
Edward Snowden, the former NSA contract worker who leaked documents detailing America's secret and broad surveillance activities, is on the short list of nominees for Europe's Sakharov Prize, which recognizes those who fight for human rights.
Other finalists include Malala Yousafzai, the Pakistani schoolgirl who survived being shot in the head; and three political prisoners in Belarus.
Originally published on Tue October 1, 2013 9:53 am
A team of chemical weapons experts has arrived in Syria, where they will begin the long and complicated task of destroying the country's chemical weapons arsenal. Under a plan endorsed by the U.N. Security Council, the weapons are to be destroyed by next June.
Syria is wracked by a civil war that has killed more than 100,000 people and forced more than 2 million others to flee the country, according to recent U.N. figures.
Eugene Rakow is a carpenter who shot himself in the heart with a nail gun. Doctors removed the nail and gave it to him as a souvenir. According to the Minneapolis Star-Tribune, the surgeon said Rakow was amazingly lucky. "Nine out of 10 people won't make it," according to the surgeon.