2012 YEAR IN REVIEW

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  • Scientists find Earth-sized world in orbit friendly to life

    The discovery, announced on Thursday, is the closest scientists have come so far to finding a true Earth twin. The star's outermost planet, designated Kepler-186f, receives about one-third the radiation from its parent star as Earth gets from the sun, meaning that high noon on this world would be roughly akin to Earth an hour before sunset, said astronomer Thomas Barclay, with NASA's Ames Research Center in Moffett Field, California. "This planet is an Earth cousin, not an Earth twin," said Barclay, who is among a team of scientists reporting on the discovery in the journal Science this week. NASA launched its Kepler space telescope in 2009 to search about 150,000 target stars for signs of any planets passing by, or transiting, relative to the telescope's point of view.

  • A nutty finale for 'Scandal,' TV's craziest show
    A nutty finale for 'Scandal,' TV's craziest show

    NEW YORK (AP) — "Scandal" is arguably the nuttiest show on the air. But there's a method to its madness, demonstrated every week with OMG intensity.

  • Reservoir to be flushed because of urinating teen
    Reservoir to be flushed because of urinating teen

    PORTLAND, Ore. (AP) — The mix of 38 million gallons of treated water and one teen's urine has proven unacceptable to Portland officials who plan to flush away the whole lot — the second time in less than three years the city has gone to such lengths to keep its water pure.

  • A Conservative Think Tank Shoots Down the Obamacare Census Conspiracy Theory
    A Conservative Think Tank Shoots Down the Obamacare Census Conspiracy Theory

    We can now pinpoint the exact moment when the Obamacare Census Bureau conspiracy theory lost its intellectual credibility on the right. On Wednesday night, Michael R. Strain, a resident scholar at the right-leaning, pro-business, and anti-Obamacare think tank American Enterprise Institute, argued that the change to the Census survey's health insurance questions was dumb, but not a conspiracy.

  • Powerful earthquake rattles Mexico, shakes buildings
    Powerful earthquake rattles Mexico, shakes buildings

    By Dave Graham MEXICO CITY (Reuters) - A powerful earthquake struck Mexico on Friday, shaking buildings in the capital and sending people running out into the street, although there were no early reports of major damage. The magnitude 7.2 quake was centered in the southwestern state of Guerrero, close to the Pacific beach resort of Acapulco, the U.S. Geological Survey (USGS) said. Luis Felipe Puente, head of the Mexican government's emergency services, said there were no immediate reports of damage and the U.S. Pacific Warning Center said it did not expect the quake to trigger a destructive tsunami. Nevertheless, residents of the capital were shaken by the quake, one of the biggest to hit Mexico in several years.

  • PETA Enlists Kids To Tell First Lady Easter Egg Policy is Rotten

    While the annual White House Easter Egg Roll celebration isn’t one typically embroiled in controversy, three young girls are letting First Lady Michelle Obama know they aren’t happy about it. Well, three young girls on behalf of PETA, or the People for the Ethical Treatment...

  • Wal-Mart jumps into the money transfer biz, loudly
    Wal-Mart jumps into the money transfer biz, loudly

    Wal-Mart is delving deeper into financial services at its stores and shaking up the money transfer business. The world's largest retailer introduced a new money transfer service Thursday that it says will ...

  • Students trapped in sinking ferry send heartbreaking text messages
    Students trapped in sinking ferry send heartbreaking text messages

    Ferry Survivors Describe Sliding Bodies, Grabbing at Railings, Wall of Water

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