October 10th, 2007


Want to be an Astronaut?

Nasa wants a few good recruits for its elite astronaut corps. A background in math or science is essential. Test piloting is a plus. And, as the application warns, "Frequent travel may be required." Just not any time soon.


NASA has begun a nine-month search to find 10 to 15 astronauts to start training in 2009. But there are now 91 astronauts competing for seats on the remaining dozen or so scheduled shuttle flights through 2010.


And given that the first mission of the agency's next-generation manned spacecraft isn't scheduled until 2015, that means this rookie class has almost no chance of flying any time soon. "If I'm a person of the caliber that NASA wants, I have to ask myself: 'Why would I go apply if I'm going to sit on my butt for six years or more to do something once?'" said Roger Handberg, an expert on space policy at the University of Central Florida.


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10. Get ahead faster in corporate America.

9. Get a blow job.

8. Find out what is so fascinating about beating the meat.

7. Pee standing up while talking to other men at a urinal.

6. Determine WHY you can't hit the bowl consistently.

5. Find out what it's like to be on the other end of a surging orgasm.

4. Touch yourself in public without thought as to how improper it may seem.

3. Jump up and down naked with an erection to see if it feels as funny as it looks.

2. Understand the scientific reason for the light refraction which occurs between a man's eyes and the ruler situated next to his member which causes two inches to be added to the final measurement.

1. Repeat number 9....

The Future

Girl Scouts [Heart] Science

The secretary of education wants to draw support for science education from some unusual quarters.

When DISCOVER magazine approached Margaret Spellings, the U.S. Secretary of Education, for this interview, they experienced firsthand the frustrations of government bureaucracy. The secretary’s office was excited to speak to the magazine and were intrigued by the chosen interviewer: Wes McCoy, an award-winning teacher who is the chairman of the science department at
North Cobb High School in Kennesaw, Georgia.


But as the date of the interview drew nearer, political reality intruded. Spellings had many other commitments she considered more pressing than discussing the state of American education with a science teacher. In the end, they managed to catch her between speeches at the Mickelson ExxonMobil Teachers Academy in Fairfax, Virginia, where Spellings was attending a conference.

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Artificial Life

Gene Pioneer to Announce Artificial Life

Craig Venter, the controversial DNA researcher involved in the race to decipher the human genetic code, has built a synthetic chromosome out of laboratory chemicals and is poised to announce the creation of the first new artificial life form on Earth.


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Quote of the Day

"An education isn't how much you have committed to memory, or even how much you know. It's being able to differentiate between what you do know and what you don't."


Anatole France (1844 - 1924)


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Image of the Day

Opportunity Rover

The venerable Opportunity Mars rover is busy at work inside Victoria Crater at Meridiani Planum. This NASA robot is being controlled from Earth to study a layer of light-toned rock exposed inside the large crater. That survey is expected to be a trip back through time as scientists can explore many millions of years ago when an impact excavated the crater.

Kemo D. (a.k.a. no.7)