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The Power of Thank You

We've long maintained that things like Love, kindness and gratitude are what's needed to create a healthy and happy humanity. Not only in some vague, spiritual sense, but also in a very practical, tangible and easily observable sense. There is a wisdom in Love that goes beyond the mind's ability to rationalize. It's an inherent sense of right and wrong that transcends the old, religion-based moralistic systems that have failed to deliver on their promises.

Modern science has recently been discovering more and more to back this up as well. A recent study from the University of Georgia has found that "spousal expression of gratitude was the most consistent significant predictor of marital quality."

"It goes to show the power of ‘thank you,'" said the study's lead author Allen Barton, a former doctoral student in the College of Family and Consumer Sciences and current postdoctoral research associate at UGA's Center for Family Research. "Even if a couple is experiencing distress and difficulty in other areas, gratitude in the relationship can help promote positive marital outcomes."

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Unbelievably intense Northern Lights superstorm

"The Northern Lights have an index for activity strength, from a 0-9 KP index. It is very rare that it reaches 9, but in March of 2015 it did just that. Here is a real time video of what it looked like, and at the end you will also see a beautiful shooting star with the aurora in the background."

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Astronomers may have found giant alien 'megastructures' orbiting star near the Milky Way

A star identified by the Kepler Space Telescope may harbour structures which could point to an adanced technological civilisation

A large cluster of objects in space look like something you would "expect an alien civilization to build", astronomers have said.  

Jason Wright, an astronomer from Penn State University, is set to publish a report on the “bizarre” star system suggesting the objects could be a “swarm of megastructures”, according to a new report.

"I was fascinated by how crazy it looked," Wright told The Atlantic. "Aliens should always be the very last hypothesis you consider, but this looked like something you would expect an alien civilisation to build."

The snappily named KIC 8462852 star lies just above the Milky Way between the constellations Cygnus and Lyra. It first attracted the attention of astronomers in 2009 when the Kepler Space Telescope identified it as a candidate for having orbiting Earth-like planets.

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Micro-satellite to inspect if Americans did land on Moon

This is often a hotly debated topic, were the moon landings faked? In an attempt to settle the controversy once and for all, a group of Russian citizens have started a project to launch a micro-satellite to visit the areas of the apparent moon landings and send back photos. They've launched a successful crowdfunding campaign and the micro-satellite will hopefully be finished soon. More information in the following video from

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Premature birth and problem pregnancies near fracking wells - The Ecologist

A new study in the US's 'fracking capital' Pennsylvania has found that pregnant women who live near gas fracking wells are far more likely to give birth prematurely or develop problems during their pregnancies.

Expectant mothers who live near natural gas fracking wells are 40% more likley to give birth prematurely and a 30% increased incidence of 'high-risk' pregnancies.

The finding comes in a new study by Johns Hopkins Bloomberg School of Public Health published in the journal Epidemiology which examines the health of Pennsylvania residents both near to and far from gas fracking operations.

"The growth in the fracking industry has gotten way out ahead of our ability to assess what the environmental and, just as importantly, public health impacts are", says study leader Brian S. Schwartz, MD, a professor in the Department of Environmental Health Sciences at the Bloomberg School.

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Nasa scientists find evidence of flowing water on Mars

We don't necessarily trust anything NASA says, but this is interesting nevertheless:

Liquid water runs down canyons and crater walls over the summer months on Mars, according to researchers who say the discovery raises the chances of being home to some form of life.

The trickles leave long, dark stains on the Martian terrain that can reach hundreds of metres downhill in the warmer months, before they dry up in the autumn as surface temperatures drop.

Images taken from the Mars orbit show cliffs, and the steep walls of valleys and craters, streaked with summertime flows that in the most active spots combine to form intricate fan-like patterns.

Scientists are unsure where the water comes from, but it may rise up from underground ice or salty aquifers, or condense out of the thin Martian atmosphere.

“There is liquid water today on the surface of Mars,” Michael Meyer, the lead scientist on Nasa’s Mars exploration programme, told the Guardian. “Because of this, we suspect that it is at least possible to have a habitable environment today.”

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Supermoon Total Lunar Eclipse: A Complete Viewing Guide for Skywatchers

What can observers expect to see happen during a lunar eclipse? Check out our guide to learn about the different phases of this celestial event.

No enthusiastic skywatcher ever misses a total eclipse of the moon. People are often surprised by how beautiful and engaging the spectacle is. Because of this hypnotizing beauty, during the time that the moon is going into, and later emerging from, the Earth's shadow, secondary phenomena may be overlooked.

To help prepare for the upcoming supermoon lunar eclipse of Sept. 27 to 28,’s Joe Rao, a veteran of sixteen total lunar eclipses — has prepared an eclipse chronology. It is likely that not all of the events mentioned will occur, because no two eclipses are exactly alike. But many will, and those who know what to look for have a better chance of seeing them! [Supermoon Lunar Eclipse: When and How to See It]

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Man fitted with robotic hand wired directly into his brain can 'feel' again

A new advanced robotic hand that is wired directly into the brain has been successfully tested, allowing paralysed man to “feel”.

The hand, developed by the Applied Physics Laboratory at Johns Hopkins university, is part of a research project into advanced replacement limbs funded by the US military’s Defense Advanced Research Projects Agency (Darpa).

The 28-year-old man, who has been paralysed for more than a decade after a spinal-cord injury, had electrodes from the prosthetic hand inserted into his sensory and motor cortexes. This allowed him to both control the hand with thought and sense when the fingers of the hand were touched individually.

Sensors in the hand detect pressure applied to any of the fingers and create electrical signals to mimic touch sensations. When blindfolded, the volunteer could determine which finger on the hand was touched with nearly 100% accuracy, according to Darpa.

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Baby Tortoises Found On Galapagos Island For First Time In Over 100 Years

After more than a century without a single baby tortoise sighting on the Galapagos island of Pinzón, a small group of the tiny, shelled youngsters have been spotted again.

The recent births are helping to pull the critically endangered animals back from the brink of extinction after they were nearly laid to waste as a result of human activity.

"I'm amazed that the tortoises gave us the opportunity to make up for our mistakes after so long," researcher James Gibbs who was among the first to see the hatchlings in December, told The Dodo.

When sailors first landed on Pinzón Island in the mid-18th century, they inadvertently triggered an environmental catastrophe that has taken generations to correct. Rats aboard those early vessels quickly gained a foothold in the fragile ecosystem, feasting on the eggs and hatchlings of the island's tortoises who, up until then, had few natural predators.

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Ants Instinctively Seek Out Natural Medicines

Healthy ants wanted nothing to do with free-radical-rich foodstuff, but ants exposed to a pathogenic fungus sought it out, which upped their odds of survival.

We humans take medicine when we're sick. As do our primate cousins. Chimps, for example, snack on a bitter African shrub to combat intestinal worms. But the habit extends even to invertebrates. Take fruit flies—which sip alcohol to ward off parasitic wasps. Or wood ants, which line their nests with antifungal, antibacterial tree sap. Now researchers in Finland report that ants there that have encountered a pathogenic fungus appear to fight the infection by eating foods high in free radicals. Those are molecules with a talent for causing cell damage, in this case, to the cells of the fungus. That's according to a study in the journal Evolution. [Nick Bos et al, Ants medicate to fight disease]


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