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Seeing things that aren’t there

Seeing animals in clouds, or a face in the moon, are examples of pareidolia. Look here for photos to test your own ability to see things that aren’t there.

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Can you see lights of Diwali from space?

The Hindu festival of Diwali was October 30, 2016. It’s a festival of light! But can you see the light of Diwali from space?

Photo via Kurt Magoon/Flickr

Halloween is an astronomical holiday

Halloween, derived from Samhain, a festival of the ancient Celts and Druids, is a cross-quarter day – midway between the autumn equinox and winter solstice.

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Science fights to control fire ants

Thinking of the ant colony as a superorganism, entomologist Patricia Pietrantonio is searching for the master regulator genes that may help control them.

October 30, 2016 earthquake in Italy via USGS

6.6-magnitude earthquake rocks Italy

Felt in Rome, it’s the strongest earthquake to hit Italy in 36 years and the largest in an on-going sequence of damaging earthquakes in Italy in 2016.

Brown Mountain Lights via spookyplaces.us.

Ghost lights: Believe if you dare

In folklore, ghost lights were strange lights seen over swamps or bogs. But we’re more sophisticated today. Aren’t we?

Penguins jumps onto an ice shelf after their feeding swim. Photo by Robin Waserman, National Science Foundation, via NOAA.

Huge new Antarctic marine reserve

The new Antarctic safe zone in the Ross Sea will encompass 600 thousand square miles (1.5 million square km) and be the largest marine protected area in the world.

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Astronomers to observe Tabby’s Star

Observations begin tonight with the Green Bank radio telescope. Astronomers are seeking evidence of an extraterrestrial civilization.

Do we contain the most elaborate set of instructions? Image via theconverstation /shutterstock

How many genes to make a person?

The answer – fewer than are in a banana – has implications for the study of human health and raises questions about what generates complexity anyway.

The photo illustrates the small size of the tarsier compared to a child. Imag via Thinkstock

Tiny tarsier is our distant cousin

This little guy looks like a big-eyed mouse, but a new genetic analysis puts tarsiers on the branch of the primate evolutionary tree that leads to great apes and humans.