6/17/2005:

Intermediate Word:  allegory -  (a) a story that symbolizes a point one is trying to make  (b) a tone poem  (c) a deep ravine  (d) a transitive relationship
Difficult Word: - hackamack   (a) two-wheeled buggy used as 19th-century taxi  (b) fermented guava juice beverage  (c) larch tree  (d) Scottish broadsword

Honey, I Shrunk the PC  - Wired News  Scientists at the University of Arizona have discovered how to use quantum mechanics to turn molecules into working transistors in the lab, a breakthrough that might one day lead to high-powered computers the size of a postage stamp. Results of the as-yet-unpublished study came together just weeks before Canadian researchers performed a similar feat using chemical means. That experiment appeared in the journal Nature last week. Together, the two studies could bring the final frontier in nanocomputing -- a single-molecule transistor -- considerably closer to reality. "This is the only proposal that I'm aware of ... to use quantum interference effects in a device at room temperature," said Arizona physicist Charles Stafford. "It's a rather big advance, because I don't think anybody has done anything quite that well-controlled with a single molecule," Kirczenow said of the Wolkow transistor. "In this case we have the ultimate efficiency," he added. "A single electron."  
Stowaway's Survival on Mars? - SpaceDaily  Some hardy Earth microbes could survive long enough on Mars to complicate the search for alien life, according to a new study co-authored by University of Florida researchers. Though scientists looking for life on Mars worry about contamination from stowaway spores clinging to spacecraft, the inhospitable Martian environment is actually an effective sterilizing agent: The intense ultraviolet rays that bombard the Martian surface are quickly fatal to most Earth microbes. However, the new study shows that at least one tough Earth species, a type of blue-green algae called Chro-ococci-diopsis, could live just long enough to leave a biological trace in the Martian soil - creating a potential false positive.    

Florida Tech Receives $430,000 From NASA For Lunar Oxygen Project - SpaceDaily  Left:  Liquid oxygen is by far the largest component of rocket fuel, forming as much as 85 percent by weight. Its production on the moon would enable rockets to re-fuel on their way to far-flung corners of the earth's solar system. The goal of the study ultimately is to produce oxygen on the moon using the FFC Cambridge process, which uses electrochemical reduction of metal oxides in a molten salt electrolyte. "Locally produced oxygen for rocket propulsion promises by far the greatest cost and mass savings. It is crucial to achieving a sustained and affordable human robotic program to explore the solar system and beyond," said Whitlow. The FFC process will possibly produce lower cost metals on earth, most notably titanium.   




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