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ALCHEMY WITH LIGHT Researchers at MIT have demonstrated ultimate control over light-shifting its frequency to any desired colour. If the effect can be harnessed, it will revolutionise a range of fields by turning light into heat, for example, or x-rays into radio waves. Pages 14-15

HUMAN NATURE SPECIAL (PART 2): New Scientist has invited top thinkers and researchers to take an in-depth look at what it means to be human. Pages 37-56...this week's dose includes: GENDER: NEW RULES FOR AN OLD GAME From her knowledge of primate societies, professor of anthropology, Sarah Blaffer Hrdy paints a very different picture to the way we usually understand motherhood. Pages 46-49...and, THE DALAI LAMA ON THE LUMINOSITY OF BEING The Dalai Lama explains the Buddhist view of the mind, and its approach to perception, cognition and emotions. He would like to see scientists "expand the parameters that brain science has set itself". Pages 42-43

FILL HER UP WITH CAGED HYDROGEN American engineers are moving closer to making safe, low pressure fuel tanks for the next generation of cars powered by hydrogen fuel cells. They have developed a new material which can be used to store vast amounts of hydrogen safely at room temperature, but releases it easily when fuel is needed. Page 18

KEEP AN EYE ON ELECTRICITY AS IT FLOWS THROUGH CIRCUITS We can now watch electricity as it flows through the tiniest circuits. The technology should allow manufacturers to scan microchips for faults, as well as revealing microscopic defects in anything from aircraft to banknotes. Page 21

DIM FUTURE FOR RESEARCH AT LEADING OBSERVATORY ANU's plan to rebuild one of the Mt Stromlo telescopes at the original site has become the subject of intense debate - because the observatory is now just 10 km from the lights of Canberra. Page 7

CRACKING THE DNA LINK TO LIFESPAN A direct link has at last been found between an animal's lifespan and the size of the DNA sequences called telomeres in chromosomes. Telomeres are known to play a key role in cancer and ageing. Page 19

WILL ELECTRIC SHOCK WEAPONS GO WIRELESS? A weapon that delivers a debilitating electric shock to its victim without the need for wires is being developed in Germany. The "Plasma-Taser" fires a spray of gas towards the target, which creates a conductive channel for the shock current. Page 19

THIS BUS WILL RUN AND RUN To make electric buses really efficient, you need a system which avoids lugging around heavy batteries that continually require recharging. US engineers have now come up with a system that transfers electricity whenever the bus stops for passengers through power points beneath the road. Pages 32-35

ANTIPODES: UNCLEAR FALLOUT Ian Lowe looks at reaction to the Budgets delivered on both sides of the Tasman last week. Page 59

ANGRY KIDS AT GREATER RISK OF HEART DISEASE Hostile children are up to three times more prone than their quieter peers to key risk factors for cardiovascular disease, an American study suggests. See also... Radiation sickness drug; Faster Googling; Neutrino disarmament. New Scientist's free public website at

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