Answer the door on Halloween and every fifth kid will be dressed as a ninja. There's just something about the legend of the ninja — secretive assassins who move silently in black robes and covered faces, leaping from rooftops and killing with throwing stars (shuriken) — that captures our popular imagination, like pirates or Robin Hood. But just like those other legendary figures, our image of the stealthy Japanese warriors is based largely on nuggets of historical truth buried under mountains of myth. … [Read more...] about Research Center Seeks to Separate Ninja Fact From Fiction
Star wars across the stars piano
It's a system that's been around since ancient times. "The idea of celestial coordinates does assume that the sky is a sphere that surrounds the Earth. This is the idea that traces back to the early belief that the Earth was the center of everything," Christopher Palma, a teaching professor and associate head for undergraduate programs in the Department of Astronomy and Physics at the Pennsylvania State University, says in an email. "Even though we now know that to not be true, it is still true that the sky appears to be a sphere surrounding us, so we can use spherical coordinates to identify any location on the sky." … [Read more...] about How Do We Find Things in the Blackness of Space?