December 31, 2009


According to Scottish legend, visitors to your door on the night of Hogamanay, will determine your luck for the New Year.

December 30, 2009

Jonkonnu: Safety Valve

In the early 1800’s, letting off steam at the annual Jonkonnu celebrations may have been a social safety valve.

December 29, 2009

Jonkonnu: Reconstructing

A widely celebrated event during the 1800’s inspired historians and local residents of eastern North Carolina to reconstruct its spectacle.

December 28, 2009

Jonkonnu: Kome

Revelers of the Jonkonnu masquerade sing and dance through neighborhoods, visiting homes where their pageantry might be favored with a gift of money.

December 25, 2009

Christmas: History

Believe it or not, there was a time when the singing of Christmas Carols could land you in jail.

December 24, 2009

Christmas: Trees & Mistletoe

Some of our most enduring Christmas traditions may date back to the days before that holiday even existed.

December 23, 2009

Jonkonnu: Origins

In North Carolina, the festival of Jonkonnu is celebrated with influences from West Africa, England, and the Caribbean.

December 22, 2009

Kids’ Science Challenge: Forensics – Making a Match

While matching evidence to a suspect can be gratifying, proving a mismatch is equally important.

December 21, 2009

Kids’ Science Challenge: Forensics – Detective Science

Real-world forensic investigations can be exciting, but it’s quite different from what we’re exposed to on TV.

December 18, 2009

Sea Otter – Recovery

Once hunted for their fur, Sea Otters have been saved from extinction thanks to the efforts of conservation biologists.

December 17, 2009

Caves: Ancient Life

Tiny creatures found in salt water caves are giving scientists clues about an ancient super-continent.

December 16, 2009

Kids’ Science Challenge: Forensics – Deciphering a Hidden Message

A forensic document examiner takes us through the process of deciphering evidence from a blank pad of paper.

December 15, 2009

Kids’ Science Challenge: Forensics – Secret Message

When incriminating evidence is written on a pad of paper, forensic scientists can reveal that message long after the page is removed.

December 14, 2009

Kids’ Science Challenge: Forensics – Glass Mystery

How can you tell a shard of clear house window glass from a seemingly identical piece of auto glass? Density!

December 11, 2009

Geologist – Mapping

We know a lot about the world around us, but how much do we know about the ground beneath us? Geologists are mapping it out.

December 10, 2009

Caves: Living Fossils

While exploring underwater caves, divers made a startling discovery — primitive animals whose ancestors have been swimming in these waters for millennia.

December 9, 2009

Termites: Insect Hydro-Power

Could termites be the key to a clean energy future? Some think that this unpopular insect may be the solution for cheap hydrogen power.

December 8, 2009

Kids’ Science Challenge: Forensics – Super Prints

Using Super Glue? Be sure to keep it off your fingers! But for a forensic scientist keeping this adhesive handy is a good idea.

December 7, 2009

Kids’ Science Challenge: Forensics – Fingerprints

For more than a century, fingerprints have proven a useful tool in forensic science.

December 4, 2009

Kids’ Science Challenge: Mars – Dirty Chamber

To test equipment bound for Mars, JPL scientists head to their “dirty chamber,” a low-pressure tank that can handle abrasive Mars-like sand.

December 3, 2009

Caves – Mars Connection

Ancient salt water caves harbor ecosystems similar to what life on Mars might have once been like.

December 2, 2009

Termite – Guts

Termites keep the microbes in the family with a little rear-to-mouth-feeding.

December 1, 2009

Caves – Diving

Scientists investigating underwater caves must brave dangerous conditions.