News Briefs 31-03-2006KatFriday, March 31st23 Comments7 min read Most of us English-speakers weren’t able to see the recent total eclipse first hand, but we may yet get our chance to stare upward in awe from the path of totality – in Oz on Nov. 13, 2012, from Darwin to near Cairns and onward across the Great Barrier Reef; and in the U.S. on Aug. 21, 2017, in a 70-mile wide path beginning in Salem, Oregon, reaching the eclipse maximum near Paducah, Kentucky, and onward to Charleston, South Carolina. Thrill-seekers with ample funds have more opportunites. Also, watch out for Jeff’s curve balls at Rigorous Intuition – he rarely ends up where you think he’s going. Rare Dan Brown lecture is an immediate sell-out. Pharaonic hall unearthed in Luxor. Stonehenge: Eclipse Computer? Winged Sun over Egypt: why there’s not a single reference to an eclipse, either of the Sun or the Moon, in ancient Egyptian history. Popular image of Jesus’ crucifixion may be quite erroneous: 1st century eyewitness descriptions show the Romans had a broad and cruel imagination. Archaeologist links ancient palace with warrior-king Ajax, hero of the Trojan War. Grave mysteries: Aleister Crowley, the occult and High Weirdness, parts one & two, which includes a molecular biologist’s take on Pablo Amaringo’s ayahuasca-inspired paintings. How Myths Are Made: An excerpt from Ronald Hutton’s Witches, Druids and King Arthur. Amazon US & UK. The UK paperback is due out in July. Dramatic and unexpected warming of air temperature over Antarctica brings into question the reliability of climate models, which failed to simulate the rise in temperatures. Heat-loving bacterium found beneath frozen lake in Antarctica. NASA restarts canceled asteroid mission. Contradicting accepted ideas of planetary behavior, computer simulations suggest hot Jupiters do not rule out alien Earths. Life waxes and wanes with bobbing of the Solar System. Thunderbolts revisits the Columbia disaster, and asks, what are we to think about giant lightning bolts to space? Alien Bases: The Mystery of the Moon. New study says Himalayas are far, far older than previously thought. GeneDupe’s chief science officer says Muggles may soon own pet dragons, other mythological creatures. That on top of Voldemort, and the the Ministry of Magic will really have its hands full! Why Some Animals Are So Smart: The unusual behavior of orangutans in a Sumatran swamp suggests a surprising answer. Cat stuck in wall waves paw for help. Rooster in Kyrgyzstan saves itself from the pot by crowing ‘Allah, Allah’. Skeptical? Just check out this BBC audio. Cockroaches make group decisions democratically. Evidence suggests some women with menstrual cycle disorders like asthma and migraine headaches may be allegic to their own estrogen and progesterone hormones. Oz researchers say extreme laziness is a medical condition called motivational deficiency disorder. No doubt a world-wide epidemic caused by those bacterial parasites in our brains. Depression breakthrough: “When we turn the current on, the patients report the emptiness suddenly disappears.” Biotech firm says it’s blood-cleaning technology can cure bird flu and a slew of other infections, including anthrax, Marburg, smallpox, and Ebola. When a gene regulating long-term memory is knocked out of operation in mice, they can retain information for much longer than normal. Brains of very intelligent children develop differently than less intelligent children. Frictionless motion observed in water. Watching new blood vessels grow using engineered viral nanoparticles. Why spiders’ silk threads don’t twist. Warbots to replace human soldiers: the days of crewed vehicles – both on the ground and in the air – are numbered. Breakthrough technique for growing replacement cartilage offers hope of replacing the entire articular surface of knees damaged by arthritis. Still lusting after that ancient sword, Roman helmet, or jewelry you saw in a museum or on the web? Life’s short – buy a copy. ET’s flown home – chased off by the internet. Disinfo, or just the usual mass media idiocy? Primary voting-machine troubles raise concerns for Nov. ’06 elections. The curious case of Sirhan Sirhan, the occult, and MKULTRA. The secret world of anagrams. For my full name, the trial version of the anagram software came up with ‘Harry trivia, knowingly’, which fits amazingly well. Thanks Greg Quote of the Day: Eclipse Dance The Sun and the Moon are dancing, circles in the sky, The shadow is advancing, the dragon passes by. And in the darkest moment, in the soul’s dark night, Great Mystery reveals itself, and the darkness turns to light. Bryan Brewer, author of Eclipse.