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(Jon sez:)

Your Writer: Jon Kilgannon He doesn't have a body or any actual facial expressions, but Chaucer really looks like someone just shoved a stick into the spokes of his mental bicycle in that last panel.

This is the second paragraph of my column, which means it's time for science. Webster Cash, an astrophysicist at the University of Colorado, has come up with the idea of using a fifty-meter-wide shade to artificially occult a star and bring its planets into view. The system would use a "starshade" that would meander around blocking out stars that scientists thought were good targets, and a space telescope several thousand kilometers away that would be aimed at the starshade. The article suggests that Earthlike planets could be seen over thirty light years away with current space telescope technology.

(Mark sez:)

Your Artist: Mark Sachs There are many new fanworks posted today to amuse and bewilder you, so by all means check them out. If we've missed any that we received, please don't hesitate to write in and remind us; it's been a busy couple of weeks.

OK, I'll lay some science on you too: The website of the Starfire Optical Range where anti-satellite laser technology is being used to take astronomical photographs, and this rather dramatic paper on describing the effects of a supernova.