I'm back from the Thanksgiving holiday and trying to catch up on the news; fortunately, there were few press releases issued last week, so I should be able to come up to speed pretty quickly. In the meantime, please check out Carnival of Space #30 over at Bad Astronomy. I also want to point out an entry of his from last week that totally astonished me: apparently most Americans think that NASA receives a quarter of the federal budget. A quarter? The actual fraction is closer to one two-hundredth -- it's 0.58% of the federal budget. No wonder many Americans (including, apparently, Katie Couric) think NASA is a waste -- if it were a quarter of the budget it certainly would be a waste. This seems like a good question to trot out at a social event -- poll your friends and family and see how much money they think NASA gets.
I've also just posted the fifth anniversary Planetary Radio show, which features an interview of Berkeley astronomer Geoff Marcy on the discovery of a fifth planet at 55 Cancri. I can't believe Mat has been producing this show week in, week out, for five years. Even I've taken a break from Q and A's now and then -- but Mat posts 51 shows a year, taking only one holiday. Please listen to the show, and if you appreciate it, send some anniversary props to Mat.