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It’s been a long day …

  • It’s a new moon, a perfect opportunity to observe 2006’s lunar standstill, a phenomenon that only appears once every 18 years. The Lunar Times is a good place for moonwatching and lunacy.
  • After 60 years, the monster responsible for mysterious tracks in a Gulf of Mexico beach is revealed.
  • A 10-year-old boy from the Phillipines came back to life 17 hours after being declared dead, and claims Jesus woke him up.
  • Persecuted for centuries, alchemy and its practitioners are increasingly becoming the focus of serious scholarship.
  • Mayan experts are worried about the historical accuracy of Mel Gibson’s new film about the collapse of Mayan civilisation, Apocalypto. No one really knows what happened to the Maya, so a Hollywood film really isn’t that far off from an expert’s guesswork.
  • Mystery continues to shroud an egg-shaped sculpture discovered in New Hampshire in 1872.
  • Archaeological data suggests climate change forced early humans out of the Sahara 6000 years ago and into the land of the Nile, giving rise to the civilisation of Egypt.
  • An American executive accidentally dobs in his boss for having an Ancient Egyptian sarcophagus in his office – in front of Zahi Hawass.
  • Egypt plans to build an offshore underwater museum, possibly near Alexandria.
  • Archaeologists in India claim that a centuries-old temple is submerged two kilometers from the Visakhapatnam coast.
  • Chinese experts argue whether to excavate the 1300-year-old Qianling imperial tomb, carved out of a mountainside and never broken into by tombrobbers.
  • After half a century, China and India have reopened an historic Himalayan trade route that was once part of the Silk Road.
  • Google, Yahoo and MSN have been slammed by an Amnesty International report for allowing China to censor the web, but do we have the right to judge? Here’s a link to the report (Adobe Acrobat).
  • A leader’s ability to identify and diffuse innovations is critical to corporate success, and such traits should be developed and encouraged in leaders, according to research. It should be encouraged in all areas of life, not just corporate.
  • Innovation we don’t need – new technology linking laundries to cell phones, computers, and TVs will tell you when the washing is done. Personally, I just check the time.
  • Sharing a bed makes men stupid, according to research. And sharing a bed with a stupid person makes you even stupider.
  • A team of American and German scientists launched a two-year project to decipher the genetic code of Neanderthals.
  • A new theory suggests early primates evolved to avoid poisonous snakes. That explains Steve Irwin.
  • A whistleblowing medic claims to have hard evidence of an attempt to produce a cloned human baby, and his name isn’t Mulder.
  • The electromagnetic fields that (supposedly) give us auras could send bacteria to colonise other planets. Or did they colonise us?
  • The molecular DNA switch has been found to be the same in all life, preserved for eons by evolution.
  • UCLA scientists have strengthened the case for life beginning more than 3.8 billion years ago.
  • The highlands of Saturn’s moon Titan may be riddled with caves.
  • Astronomers are excitedly watching a star that is about to explode and turn supernova.
  • A spacecraft taking off from a private West Texas spaceport being bankrolled by Amazon dot com founder Jeff Bezos would take off and land vertically.
  • An Iranian-US multimillionaire who grew up watching Star Trek will be the first female space tourist.
  • A firm arranging private trips to the International Space Station is now offering a bonus spacewalk – if you’re willing to pay more than the initial $20 million.
  • Here’s a great article about space entrepeneur Robert Bigelow. The Genesis 1 spacecraft is performing well, by the way.

Thanks David, Pam, Badeye and Kat.

Quote of the Day:

Without glasnost there is not, and there cannot be, democratism, the political creativity of the masses and their participation in management.

Mikhail Gorbachev