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The Colors of Mars

While Mars has long been considered the “Red Planet”, does that mean that even NASA’s blue “meatball” logo has to turn hot pink? Shifting, unusual colors have been the topic of considerable online discussion since NASA’s Mars Exploration Rovers landed…
February 10, 2004

While Mars has long been considered the “Red Planet”, does that mean that even NASA’s blue “meatball” logo has to turn hot pink? Shifting, unusual colors have been the topic of considerable online discussion since NASA’s Mars Exploration Rovers landed on the planet last month. Some, for example, point to images of a color calibration target on each rover: squares that should appear green and blue, such as in this image, instead appear brown and pink. Is this evidence of a problem with the rovers, a simple technical goof, or something more nefarious? As you might image, conspiracy theorists have tended to focus on the last explanation.

Tuesday’s New York Times provides the clearest and most succinct explanation for the shifting colors. Scientists create the color images by combining grayscale images taken through different filters. For “true color” images, scientists usually use images from green, blue, and red filters, but in many cases the red filter has been replaced with a near-infrared one. The result: blue turns to pink. Why the switch? The infrared filter allows scientists to discern several types of minerals in the rocks and soil.

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Five poems about the mind

DREAM VENDING MACHINE I feed it coins and watch the spring coil back,the clunk of a vacuum-packed, foil-wrappeddream dropping into the tray. It dispenses all kinds of dreams—bad dreams, good dreams,short nightmares to stave off worse ones, recurring dreams with a teacake marshmallow center.Hardboiled caramel dreams to tuck in your cheek,a bag of orange dreams…

Work reinvented: Tech will drive the office evolution

As organizations navigate a new world of hybrid work, tech innovation will be crucial for employee connection and collaboration.

lucid dreaming concept
lucid dreaming concept

I taught myself to lucid dream. You can too.

We still don’t know much about the experience of being aware that you’re dreaming—but a few researchers think it could help us find out more about how the brain works.

panpsychism concept
panpsychism concept

Is everything in the world a little bit conscious?

The idea that consciousness is widespread is attractive to many for intellectual and, perhaps, also emotional
reasons. But can it be tested? Surprisingly, perhaps it can.

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Illustration by Rose WongIllustration by Rose Wong

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