January 13, 2005

The head of the UN's cultural and scientific agency said a $30 million tsunami early warning system for the Indian Ocean could be in place by June 2006, with a global one to follow a year later.

The Deep Impact probe has a date with Comet Tempel 1 on July 4 more than 82 million miles from Earth. The 820-pound, camera-equipped chunk of copper will be placed in the comets' path and ultimately slam into it at about 23,000 miles an hour. Now that's some cool science.

A pair of “Mesozoic dogs” that hunted small dinosaurs 130 million years ago has been discovered in China, overturning standard theories about the earliest mammals. It had been thought that the mammals of the Mesozoic era were insect-eating or herbivorous creatures no bigger than modern mice, rats and shrews. The smaller of the two dog-sized fossils still has the remains of its last meal — a juvenile dinosaur — in its stomach area, while the larger is the biggest mammal ever found from its age.

Spending on home improvements rose 52% to $233 billion in 2003 from $153 billion in 1995. Coincidentally, that about the same amount the Bush administration has spent on Iraq "improvement."

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