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11:00 am
Fri December 7, 2012

Blue Whale Barrel Roll Caught On Camera

Transcript

FLORA LICHTMAN, BYLINE: We're ending this hour into the sea, Ira. Could you tell?

IRA FLATOW, HOST:

Ooh, yeah. I like it.

LICHTMAN: The noise you're hearing comes from a blue whale; that's an animal that can reach 90 feet in length, which is longer than a tennis court. Biologist...

JEREMY GOLDBOGEN: Hands down, these are largest animals of all time. And so one of the questions we're interested in is how do they sustain such an extreme body mass and why don't we see anything bigger than a blue whale?

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NPR Story
11:00 am
Fri December 7, 2012

No Joke

Originally published on Fri December 7, 2012 12:03 pm

Why Even Tragedy Gets A Laugh — When comedian Tig Notaro found out she had breast cancer, she incorporated the grim news into her stand-up routine--and got quite a few laughs from the audience. Notaro and neuroscientist Robert Provine discuss the origins of laughter, what separates the amusing from the truly funny, and why even tragedy sometimes gets a laugh.

NPR Story
11:00 am
Fri December 7, 2012

Curiosity 2.0? NASA Announces New Mars Rover Plans

Originally published on Fri December 7, 2012 12:03 pm

Transcript

FLORA LICHTMAN, BYLINE: Up next, more spacey news.

IRA FLATOW, HOST:

All right.

All right. Can't get enough?

Mm-hmm.

LICHTMAN: Earlier this week, NASA announced plans to launch another rover to Mars in the year 2020. And there's some buzz, there's some speculation that this one could have a wheel up on Curiosity. Maybe it wouldn't just analyze samples there but could shift them back to Earth.

FLATOW: You know, I've heard that before.

LICHTMAN: Don't be downer, Ira.

(LAUGHTER)

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NPR Story
11:00 am
Fri December 7, 2012

Ask an Astronaut: NASA Spaceflyers Open Up

Originally published on Fri December 7, 2012 12:03 pm

Transcript

IRA FLATOW, HOST:

Next up, who didn't, at one time or another, now think about it, who didn't want to be an astronaut when they were growing up, especially those of us, the children of the space-age space race? Well, for those of us whose lives are a bit more Earthbound, we've got a fun edition to our Ask an Expert series. How about Ask an Astronaut? Everything you wanted to ever ask an astronaut, Flora.

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NPR Story
11:00 am
Fri December 7, 2012

(for scifri) Unlocking A Lake's Bacterial Secrets, Beneath 20 Meters Of Ice

Originally published on Fri December 7, 2012 12:03 pm

What does life truly need to survive? Writing in the Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences, Alison Murray and colleagues describe a community of unusual bacteria that survive under 20 meters of ice in the dark, salty, sub-freezing waters of Lake Vida, Antarctica.

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