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The SciFri Book Club Tours 'The Planets'

The SciFri Book Club is touring the solar system, with Dava Sobel's 2005 The Planets. Call in with a review of the book. Plus Jim Green, director of planetary science at NASA, joins the club to give an update on what's happened planet-wise since the book was published.
NPR

Birding for the Holidays

The Audubon's 113th Christmas Bird Count is underway, and thousands of volunteers are taking part this year. Ornithologist David Bonter, and Gary Langham, Audubon's chief scientist, share tips on which species to look out for, and how even birding beginners can get involved.
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Why Some Kids Have An Inflated Sense Of Their Science Skills

A massive analysis of some 350,000 students in 53 countries has uncovered a paradox: Students in many countries that are mediocre at science have an inflated sense of good they are.
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Drought, Economics And Your Holiday Feast

The Great Drought of 2012 dominated headlines this summer, but so far, it has not had a major impact on the prices of food on your holiday table, except the dairy products. That prime rib is more expensive for other reasons.
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Big Food And The Big, Silent Salt Experiment

Food manufacturers have been quietly reducing sodium by tiny amounts in popular foods like crackers for years now. That's because if products are marked "low sodium," consumers won't buy them. But companies are also working on ways to deliver more salt taste with less sodium.
NPR

In Calif. Gold Country, A Rush That's Out Of This World

When a meteorite crashed down in April on the exact spot where gold was discovered in 1848, professional and amateur meteorite hunters alike fanned out to collect small chunks. Now more than 50 scientists have published an analysis of the rare space rock.
NPR

Next In Line For A Fracking Boom, California Looks At The Rules

The state is known for its tough environmental rules, but it has largely ignored hydraulic fracturing until now. Though California's concerns are like those of many other places, there's also the question of how the growing fracking industry might affect earthquakes.
NPR

Elixirs Made To Fight Malaria Still Shine On The Modern Bar

Many modern day liqueurs, like Campari and Pimm's, started off as 19th century medicinal tonics made to cure an array of ailments, including malaria. So if you're sipping a French aperitif or an absinth cocktail this holiday season, chances are you're also imbibing a bit of malaria history.

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