3/23/2004:

Intermediate Word:  antipasto  (a) appetizer assortment  (b) type of chili pepper  (c) guerrilla resistance movement  (d) defiant pronunciamento
Difficult Word: - dudeen  (a) tightly woven wool cloth  (b) hot-air activated stove pipe damper  (c) clay pipe  (d) Scottish dish


War of the Words: Scientist Attacks Alien Claims - Space.com  Astronomer Philip Plait is tired of radio personality Richard Hoagland's claims. He's had enough of Hoagland's assertions that NASA is covering up evidence of extraterrestrial life, that the infamous Face on Mars was built by sentient aliens and, of late, that otherworldly machine parts are embedded in the red planet's dirt. Hoagland has since 1983, he says, led "an outside scientific team in a critically acclaimed independent analysis of possible intelligently-designed artifacts" 
Sedna, Nasa Astronomers discover 'new planet'  - BBC  Left:  Sedna is currently about 13 billion kilometers (about 8 billion miles, compared to Pluto's 3.6 billion miles) from Earth. Astronomers have detected what could be the Solar System's 10th planet. It was first seen by astronomers using California's Mount Palomar Observatory, and has been given the name "Sedna" after the Inuit goddess of the ocean. 
Observations show it measures about 1,180-2,360km (730-1,470 miles) across, making it similar in size to Pluto. Astronomers now say they have evidence that Sedna has its own moon, although this needs to be confirmed, and is also very red in colour.  

Nanotechnology is soaring, but early applications likely to be modest - Seattle Times  Left:  Nobel Prize winner Richard Smalley sees the potential of nanotechnology for the world's energy problems, among many other possibilities. He is a founder of Carbon Nanotechnologies and a Rice University professor. The blue steel column stands bolt upright in a warehouse in Houston. The blue column contains a weird new furnace of sorts, evidently the largest of its kind in the world. The furnace makes fluffy black stuff that "looks like soot," said Bob Gower, head of the company building the device. "But it's very sophisticated soot." Right now it sells for 39 times the price of gold. The black stuff consists of exceedingly small tubes of carbon, "the strongest thing you'll ever make out of anything in the universe," said Richard Smalley, the scientist who won a Nobel Prize for helping to discover similar objects. Someday, when the price falls and the quality improves, this black stuff might be woven into a cable thinner than a human finger yet capable of carrying the world's entire supply of electricity. Or it might be used in computers hundreds of times more powerful than those now available but tiny enough to wear on a wrist. Or in impossibly thin, graceful bridges over which the heaviest trucks would roar without making a dent.





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