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50 Years After First Interplanetary Probe, NASA Looks To Future

Mariner 2's 1962 mission to Venus was the first time any spacecraft had gone to another planet. Before the mission, very little was known about the planets, and much of what was believed to be true turned out to be wrong.
NPR

Brewers Prepare Beer For The End Of Time, Mayan Or Otherwise

Dec. 21 marks the end of the Mayan calendar — a time of celebration for the ancient people, scientists say, although some modern day folks worry it's a sign of the apocalypse. It may not be the end of the world as we know it, but beer masters inspired by the end of days feel fine.
NPR

Alan Alda's Challenge to Scientists: What is Time?

Alan Alda founded The Flame Challenge last year to promote better science communication, and he started by asking scientists to come up with a kid-friendly explanation for a flame. Now, Alda is back with round two of the popular contest, and kids want to know: What is time?
NPR

Using Science to Care for Your Christmas Tree

Nothing beats the smell of a live Christmas tree in your home, but how can you keep the needles on your tree and off your carpet? Rick Bates, professor of horticulture at Penn State University, offers tips for how to properly care for your Christmas tree this holiday season.
NPR

A View from the Flip Side

Could you handle a world that looked upside down? Marc Abrahams, editor and co-founder of The Annals of Improbable Research, shares a case study in which the subject was made to wear vision-flipping goggles. Ten days later, the man was riding a bicycle and playing catch in the park--his only impairment the strange headgear itself.
NPR

'Instant' Looks At Polaroid's Land

Writer Christopher Bonanos tells the story of analog instant photography and the man who invented it--Edwin Land, the scientist and co-founder of the Polaroid Corporation. Plus Flora Lichtman visits New York's 20x24 Studio to capture a super-sized Polaroid camera in action.
NPR

Is It Possible To Create A Mind?

Siri can make an appointment for you. IBM's Watson beat a human contestant on Jeopardy. But will they ever really think? Futurist Ray Kurzweil shares his thoughts on the nature of the brain and describes how biological and technological advances might augment the human mind.

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