The Frightful Truth About Halloween Pumpkins

Every October, families rush to pumpkin patches to pick out the perfect gourds. Some use them to carve spooky jack-o'-lanterns, while others place them outside their homes as decor. Unfortunately, the fascination with the colorful fruit fades once Halloween ends, and most pumpkins end up in the trash.

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Diwali, The Indian Festival Of Lights Explained

Few Indian festivals are as anticipated, or as widely celebrated, as Diwali. Also called Deepavali, or Festival of Lights, the five-day event, which starts on November 2, 2021, is observed by over a billion people worldwide. The ancient tradition dates back over 2,500 years and is one of the major holidays celebrated by Hindus, Jains, Sikhs, and some Buddhists.

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The World's First Space Hotel Hopes To Welcome Visitors in 2027

Thanks to the hard work of companies like SpaceX, Virgin Galactic, and Blue Origin, space tourism is well on its way to becoming a reality. Now, California-based Orbital Assembly Corporation (OAC) envisions a chance for galactic visitors to extend their "out-of-the-world" experience by checking into a luxurious hotel in low Earth orbit.

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The Origin Of Some Spooky Halloween Traditions

Few countries celebrate Halloween with as much fervor and excitement as the US. Children and adults alike observe the occasion by dressing in creative costumes, gorging on candy, and decorating homes and front yards with spooky skeletons and jack-o’-lanterns. Meanwhile, enterprising entrepreneurs cash in on the holiday with creative haunted houses, corn mazes, and hayrides. So, how did all the fun customs come about? Read on:

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Artificial Intelligence Helps Complete Beethoven's Unfinished Symphony

Ludwig van Beethoven is undoubtedly one of the greatest musicians that ever lived. The German composer and pianist completed 722 musical works— including nine symphonies — despite being completely deaf during the last decade of his life. Unfortunately, the maestro died while still working on his 10th Symphony. Now, a team of musicians and scientists have used artificial intelligence (AI) to complete the artist's final masterpiece.

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British Columbia Resident Gets Rudely Awakened By A Falling Meteorite

Halloween may be a few weeks away, but Ruth Hamilton has already been subjected to a spooky "trick." On October 3, 2021, the Golden, British Columbia, resident was in deep slumber when she heard a massive explosion. Shortly after, Hamilton felt some debris on her face. She jumped off the bed and turned on the light only to find a melon-sized boulder on the pillow and a huge hole in her ceiling.

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Massachusetts 8th Graders Instigate Legislation To Clear The Name Of The Final Salem "Witch"

The infamous Salem witch trials, which took place in colonial Massachusetts between 1692 and 1693, were a dark period in America's legal history. More than 200 people were wrongfully accused of practicing witchcraft, and 20 were executed. In the 328 years since, most of the accused have been cleared of any crimes. However, for reasons unknown, Elizabeth Johnson Jr., who was just 22 at the time, was never pardoned. Now, thanks to the hard work of an eighth-grade class from North Andover Middle School, MA, her name may finally be cleared.

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2,191-Pound Mega Gourd Takes Top Prize At The "Super Bowl" Of Pumpkin Competitions

For most Americans, fall is synonymous with pumpkins. Some use the fruit to make delicious soups and bread, others to carve out scary jack-o-lanterns. Then there are those that spend months nurturing massive gourds for pumpkin weigh-off contests. Though there are numerous competitions nationwide, the most impressive pumpkins usually end up at the Safeway World Championship Pumpkin Weigh-Off in Half Moon Bay, CA.

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Russian Crew Is The First To Film A Fiction Movie In Space

Space-related films have come a long way since A Trip to the Moon — a silent movie with no camera movement or close-ups — was released in 1902. Filmmakers now use the extensive technology at their disposal to immersively transport fans to alien worlds. However, no one has attempted to shoot a feature film in space — until now! On October 5, 2021, astronauts at the International Space Station (ISS) welcomed their first fiction film crew — Russian actress Yulia Peresild and director Klim Shipenko.

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Oil Spill Off The Coast Of California Closes Beaches And Threatens Wildlife

A ruptured undersea oil pipeline off the coast of Huntington Beach, CA, has leaked thousands of gallons of oil into the Pacific Ocean, threatening fish and wildlife and causing numerous beach closures. The spill, caused by a 13-inch tear in a pipeline that transports crude oil from an offshore drilling platform to a pump station in Long Beach, CA, was first reported by locals on October 1, 2021. Experts are still trying to determine the amount of oil leaked before the pipeline was shut down on October 3, 2021. The estimates range anywhere from 25,000 gallons to 136,000 gallons.

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Should A Blank Canvas Be Considered Art? One Dutch Artist Certainly Thinks So!

A mirror coated in red paint, a banana stuck to the wall with duct tape, and an invisible sculpture — these are just a few of the abstract artworks that have recently sold for astounding amounts. Now, Dutch artist Jens Haaning has taken the genre to a whole new level. His aptly named "TAKE THE MONEY AND RUN" masterpiece, comprising two empty frames, have set a local museum back 534,000 Danish krone ($84,000)!

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The Columbus Day Debate

The second Monday in October has traditionally been known as Columbus Day in honor of the Italian explorer's "discovery" of the Americas on October 12, 1492. However, the US federal holiday, which will be celebrated on October 11 this year, has always been controversial due to the European settlers' cruel treatment of the Native American people.

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Chain Mail-Inspired Fabric Can Stiffen On Demand

Many superheroes wear capes. But Batman's imposing floor-length cloak is legendary. The twisting sheath not only adds to the Dark Knight's mystique but also transforms into a rigid fabric that allows him to fly for extended periods. Now, engineers at the California Institute of Technology (Caltech) and Nanyang Technological University (NTU) in Singapore have replicated the shape-shifting material in real life.

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Canary Island Volcano Continues To Erupt After Two Weeks

La Palma, one of Spain's Canary Islands, has been feeling the wrath of the Cumbre Vieja volcano since September 19, 2021. The explosive volcano, which came to life shortly after 3:00 pm local time, has been spewing out large amounts of molten lava, sometimes up to 20 feet (6 meters) high. The slow-moving rivers of magma have destroyed nearly 400 homes, buried dozens of kilometers of roads, and consumed hundreds of acres of farmland.

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Pig-Faced Shark Found In The Mediterranean Sea Becomes An Overnight Sensation

A fish with the body of a shark and the face of a pig may sound like something straight out of a science fiction movie. But that precisely describes the dead shark retrieved from the waters off Italy's Elba Island on August 15, 2021. Not surprisingly, photos of the unusual animal, posted on the Elba Island App Facebook page on September 3, 2021, have caused a stir worldwide. However, locals are not impressed.

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This Ingenious Portable Desalination Device Makes Seawater Drinkable

Humans have flown to the Moon and may even make it to Mars. But providing clean water to all remains a challenge. The World Health Organization estimates that one in three people globally still do not have easy access to clean water. While desalinating ocean water is an obvious solution, the current process is both expensive and harmful for the environment. Now, some Malaysian students may have found a cheaper, more sustainable way to transform seawater into drinkable water.

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