1/4/2004:

Intermediate Word: 
apropos  (a) appropriate  (b) proposed  (c) dissimilar  (d) falling short of a goal
Difficult Word: - declassť - (a) passť  (b) down-classed  (c) hard to categorize  (d) upper-class

Planetary Survivor Strategy: Outeat, "Outweigh," Outlast! - SpaceDaily  Left:  By Jove, survival is hard work!  Of the first 100 stars found to harbor planets, more than 30 stars host a Jupiter-sized world in an orbit smaller than Mercury's, whizzing around its star in a matter of days (as opposed to our solar system where Jupiter takes 12 years to orbit the Sun). Such close orbits result from a race between a nascent gas giant and a newborn star. In the October 10, 2003, issue of The Astrophysical Journal Letters, astronomers Myron Lecar and Dimitar Sasselov showed what influences this race. They found that planet formation is a contest, where a growing planet must fight for survival.
Earth's Inconstant Magnetic Field - SpaceDaily  Left:  The movement of Earth's north magnetic pole across the Canadian arctic, 1831--2001. More at Geological Survey of Canada  Every few years, scientist Larry Newitt of the Geological Survey of Canada goes hunting. He grabs his gloves, parka, a fancy compass, hops on a plane and flies out over the Canadian arctic. Not much stirs among the scattered islands and sea ice, but Newitt's prey is there--always moving, shifting, elusive. His quarry is Earth's north magnetic pole. At the moment it's located in northern Canada, about 600 km from the nearest town: Resolute Bay, population 300, where a popular T-shirt reads "Resolute Bay isn't the end of the world, but you can see it from here." Newitt stops there for snacks and supplies--and refuge when the weather gets bad. "Which is often," he says. At the moment it's located in northern Canada, about 600 km from the nearest town: Resolute Bay, population 300, where a popular T-shirt reads "Resolute Bay isn't the end of the world, but you can see it from here." Newitt stops there for snacks and supplies--and refuge when the weather gets bad. "Which is often," he says. The pole kept going during the 20th century, north at an average speed of 10 km per year, lately accelerating "to 40 km per year," says Newitt. At this rate it will exit North America and reach Siberia in a few decades. Earth's magnetic field is changing in other ways, too: Compass needles in Africa, for instance, are drifting about 1 degree per decade. And globally the magnetic field has weakened 10% since the 19th century. A typical headline: "Is Earth's magnetic field collapsing?" Probably not.These changes are mild compared to the past.   

New-Generation Autonomous Helicopter To Create New Era Of Human Safety  - SpaceDaily  Australian scientists have developed a 'brain', which enables the production of a world-first low-cost, intelligent small helicopter, set to end many difficult and dangerous tasks undertaken by humans. The CSIRO Mantis can simply be told where to go and what to do, and it will go off, do the job and find its own way home, unassisted. Dr Peter Corke of CSIRO Complex Systems Integration says, "Mantis makes it possible for fleets of small drone helicopters to do jobs now done by conventional aircraft. This could lead to a quantum leap in the speed of air sea rescue efforts."

 




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