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How did turtles get their shells?

Ever wonder how a turtle got its shell? You're not the only one. Evolutionary biologists and paleontologists have long been stumped by the question. But a recently unearthed turtle fossil, the oldest on record, may hold the answer...

November 26, 2008 — Susannah F. Locke

Rocket pack pilot soars sans parachute

Rocket pack technology got a real boost today when daredevil Eric Scott used his to fly 1,500 feet (457 meters) across the 1,053-foot (321-meter) deep Royal Gorge on the Arkansas River, Denver's Rocky Mountain News reports...

November 25, 2008 — Larry Greenemeier

Smut spammer ordered to pay Facebook record $873 million

The never-ending war against spam scored a rare victory recently when a federal judge in San Jose, California ordered a prolific spammer to pay Facebook a whopping $873 million in damages for unleashing a torrent of unsavory messages on the social network's members...

November 25, 2008 — Susannah F. Locke

Simple no-risk prenatal blood test may detect vast range of genetic disorders

Prenatal genetic tests such as amniocentesis (drawing some amniotic fluid from around a 16-week fetus) always carries a small risk of miscarriage. Now, a partnership between a group of Chinese researchers and a San Diego biotech company may result in a simple no-risk blood test that detects defects caused by single-gene mutations...

November 25, 2008 — Gary Stix

Thanksgiving: The scientific explanation

You might be wondering what science has to do with Thanksgiving. Its only complexity should involve family feuds and kitchen disasters, right? Have we got news for you: there are myths to be shattered about this most American of holidays, including the alleged soporific effects of turkey and the assumption that gratitude has nothing to do with good health...

November 25, 2008 — Jordan Lite

NASA: All systems go for space urine recycling system

After five days of ill-fated attempts, International Space Station (ISS) astronauts today ran two successful tests of equipment on board designed to turn urine, sweat and moisture from the air into drinking water, reports...

November 25, 2008 — Larry Greenemeier

Ocean turning to acid at lightning speed

Increased carbon dioxide (CO2) in the atmosphere is making the Pacific coast acidic far more rapidly than previously believed, potentially wreaking havoc for creatures living in it that are unable to tolerate the swiftly changing environment.  

Ecologists at the University of Chicago tracked the acidity of the Pacific off an island close to Washington state over the course of eight years...

November 24, 2008 — Susannah F. Locke

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