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HDYK and other contest updates

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So we've selected a random winner for the Jackie Hoffman CD, Kristin Beach, who was one of dozens with the right answer from my malapropism post: "The "˜malaprop man' from the movie Kissing Jessica Stein "“ "˜Normally I'm a pretty self-defecating guy.' "“ in the comments section."

Congrats Kristin! We'll be in touch and send you the CD.

Perhaps more importantly: the next How Did You Know? trivia hunt will be starting this coming Tuesday, as we shake it up a bit this month. Instead of a Mon-Fri contest, we'll be posting the four main challenges Tue-Fri, giving you the weekend to work on your answers for the main puzzle, which will now go up on Monday at 8:00 pm ET. We had a few complaints from people who said it was often hard to fire off that winning e-mail during work hours because a meeting would be stuck on the calendar at the last minute, or a phone call would interrupt them. In addition to the usual winner, we'll also be selecting one random winner (that is, someone with all the correct answers). Mr. or Mrs. Random will get a pick of any t-shirt in our store.
So hopefully this will give more people an opportunity to play. And not a moment too soon because our winners, Avery Dale, Ken Laskowski, Colin Utley, and Hayley Wells, are going for the big trifecta this month.

Is there anyone out there smart enough, fast enough, dare I say CRAZY enough to knock them off?

Tune in on Tuesday and find out as we kick off another fun HDYK?

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

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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