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Submission + - What could have been in the public domain January 1, but isn't (duke.edu)

An anonymous reader writes: What could have been entering the public domain in the US on January 1, 2013? Under the law that existed until 1978 Works from 1956. The films Godzilla, King of the Monsters!, The Best Things in Life Are Free, Forbidden Planet, The Ten Commandments, and Around the World in 80 Days, the stories 101 Dalmations and Phillip K. Dick’s The Minority Report, the songs Que Sera, Sera and Heartbreak Hotel, and more What is entering the public domain this year? Nothing.

Submission + - Ask Slashdot: What is your New Years Eve tradition? 1

skade88 writes: What does the /. community do to celebrate New Years Eve? Does your city do something cool and unique to celebrate? Do you celebrate with fireworks in front of your house or in your fav MMO (Wow... Minecraft... etc..)?

Submission + - Black Hole's Spinning Heart of Darkness (sciencemag.org)

sciencehabit writes: Like all invisible things that are only partly understood, black holes evoke a sense of mystery. Astronomers know that the tremendous gravitational pull of a black hole sucks matter in, and that the material falling in causes powerful jets of particles to shoot out of the hole at nearly the speed of light. But how exactly this phenomenon occurs remains a matter of conjecture, because astronomers have never quite managed to observe the details – until now.

Astrophysicists have taken the closest look to date at the region where matter swirls around a black hole. By measuring the size of the base of a jet shooting out of the supermassive black hole at the center of the M87 galaxy, the researchers conclude that the black hole must be spinning and that the material orbiting must also be swirling in the same direction. Some of the material from this orbiting "accretion disk" is also falling into the black hole, like water swirling down a drain.


Submission + - Bearing Sons Can Change Your Brain (sciencemag.org)

sciencehabit writes: Giving a whole new meaning to "pregnancy brain," a new study shows that male DNA—likely left over from pregnancy with a male fetus—can persist in a woman's brain throughout her life. Although the biological impact of this foreign DNA is unclear, the study also found that women with more male DNA in their brains were less likely to have suffered from Alzheimer's disease—hinting that the male DNA could help protect the mothers from the disease.

Submission + - One common ancester for blue eyed people (livescience.com) 3

Pyrotech7 writes: Live Science reports People with blue eyes have a single, common ancestor, according to new research. A team of scientists has tracked down a genetic mutation that leads to blue eyes. The mutation occurred between 6,000 and 10,000 years ago. Before then, there were no blue eyes. "Originally, we all had brown eyes," said Hans Eiberg from the Department of Cellular and Molecular Medicine at the University of Copenhagen

"The question really is, 'Why did we go from having nobody on Earth with blue eyes 10,000 years ago to having 20 or 40 percent of Europeans having blue eyes now?" Hawks said. "This gene does something good for people. It makes them have more kids."

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