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Morning Cup of Links: 11 Links

Oxford Dictionaries’ Word of the Year Is GIF. It was always a noun, but now it is also used as a verb.
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Here Are 40 Animals Who Are More Ready For Thanksgiving Than You Are. Of course, they don't have to cook or clean the house -they just wear funny hats and eat!
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In the wake of General Petraeus' resignation from the CIA, here's a gallery of Eight Famous Military Affairs. Famous, because nothing stays a secret forever.
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In 1985, a woman told the horrifying tale of her haunted toaster. It spoke with the devil's voice, which sounded like Eli Wallach.
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Helen Keller: Vaudeville Star. It wasn't your usual song and dance routine, but audiences loved it.
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Our collective attention span is growing shorter by the minute. Some folks lose patience and give up if they have to wait as little as two seconds for a video to load.
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A reader wrote to Cake Wrecks that the bakery at her local supermarket has a new policy prohibiting photography. She heard that it was because the management was afraid the cakes would show up on "that bad cake site."
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Meet the Girl Who Has to Drink Six Pints of Milk a Day Just to Survive. And if she'd been born in any other era, she wouldn't have lived to see a diagnosis.
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What if the Earth had rings like Saturn? Roy Prol shows us what that would look like (hint: beautiful).
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How Black Friday ate Thanksgiving: A brief history. But only for those who prefer shopping to turkey and family time.
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8 Unusual College Scholarships. Not that you care how odd they are as long as they pay at least a little tuition.

Original image
Ian Hitchcock/Getty Images
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Space
Can’t See the Eclipse in Person? Watch NASA’s 360° Live Stream
Original image
Ian Hitchcock/Getty Images

Depending on where you live, the historic eclipse on August 21 might not look all that impressive from your vantage point. You may be far away from the path of totality, or stuck with heartbreakingly cloudy weather. Maybe you forgot to get your eclipse glasses before they sold out, or can't get away from your desk in the middle of the day.

But fear not. NASA has you covered. The space agency is live streaming a spectacular 4K-resolution 360° live video of the celestial phenomenon on Facebook. The livestream started at 12 p.m. Eastern Time and includes commentary from NASA experts based in South Carolina. It will run until about 4:15 ET.

You can watch it below, on NASA's Facebook page, or on the Facebook video app.

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Art
Cephalopod Fossil Sketch in Australia Can Be Seen From Space

Australia is home to some of the most singular creatures alive today, but a new piece of outdoor art pays homage to an organism that last inhabited the continent 65 million years ago. As the Townsville Bulletin reports, an etching of a prehistoric ammonite has appeared in a barren field in Queensland.

Ammonites are the ancestors of the cephalopods that currently populate the world’s oceans. They had sharp beaks, dexterous tentacles, and spiraling shells that could grow more than 3 feet in diameter. The inland sea where the ammonites once thrived has since dried up, leaving only fossils as evidence of their existence. The newly plowed dirt mural acts as a larger-than-life reminder of the ancient animals.

To make a drawing big enough to be seen from space, mathematician David Kennedy plotted the image into a path consisting of more than 600 “way points.” Then, using a former War World II airfield as his canvas, the property’s owner Rob Ievers plowed the massive 1230-foot-by-820-foot artwork into the ground with his tractor.

The project was funded by Soil Science Australia, an organization that uses soil art to raise awareness of the importance of farming. The sketch doubles as a paleotourist attraction for the local area, which is home to Australia's "dinosaur trail" of museums and other fossil-related attractions. But to see the craftsmanship in all its glory, visitors will need to find a way to view it from above.

[h/t Townsville Bulletin]

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