IS THERE LIFE OUT THERE? SPRAY ONCE FOR YES | The best chance for finding life on other planets may be hoping that extraterrestrials are spraying CFCs into their atmospheres, just like we did. Artist's conception by Lynnette Cook via NASA.

Scientists claim to have discovered something "earthshaking" on Mars

The Mars Science Laboratory team has hinted that they might have some big news to share soon. But like good scientists, they are waiting until they verify their results before saying anything definitive. More »

21 Pictures that Sum Up the Whole History of Science Fiction

Science fiction is the genre of ideas - but it's also given us some unforgettable pictures along the way. Every era in science fiction's history has shown us a new vision of the strange and futuristic, and one image can spawn a million reflections in your mind's eye. More »

Astronomers discover a planet so massive it defies classification

Scientists using the Subaru Telescope in Hawaii have discovered a "super-Jupiter" orbiting around the bright star Kappa Andromedae. The planet, which is about 13 times the size of Jupiter, glows with a reddish color and skirts the line between planet and star on account of its tremendous mass. More »

SNL reveals what happens when Hawkeye runs out of arrows

On last night's episode of Saturday Night Live, Jeremy Renner reprised his role as the Avengers' crack archer Hawkeye. But during the final battle, Hawkeye runs out of arrows. More »

The 10 Books You Absolutely Must Read to Understand the History of Earth

The Earth is 4.5 billion years old, and life began oozing across its boiling, methane-saturated surface about a billion years after our planet was born. More »

Holiday Ornaments That Make You Wonder What the Hell Hallmark Was Thinking

Every year Hallmark releases a treasure trove of Christmas ornaments, many of them nerdy as all get-out. This holiday season alone, there are ornaments from the Avengers movie, The Dark Knight Rises, Lord of the Rings, Star Wars and Star Trek, just to name a few! More »

Eight people who survived by performing surgery on themselves

We all hear about people hacking off their own arms or legs to free themselves, and that seems horrible enough. But what about the people who need to do more than sawing? More »

Guillermo del Toro explains the biggest mistake people make in telling stories for children

Guillermo del Toro has directed some of the coolest movies of the past decade or so, including Pan's Labyrinth and Hellboy, plus the upcoming monster/robot smackdown Pacific Rim. More »

Concept art reveals that RoboCop's new armor really does look (thankfully) like RoboCop

First there were the hideously generic black football pads, then there was the formidable suit of armor lurking in the darkness. Now, we finally get a good look at a silver version of the new cyborg suit from the upcoming RoboCop remake, and thank the Robot Devil, it's silver. More »

Remember that scary undersea "bloop" noise? At last we know what caused it.

Back in the late 1990s, NOAA's Acoustic Monitoring Project recorded a series of haunting, creepy noises from deep beneath the ocean's surface (you can hear it in the audio above). More »

Gift Ideas for the 8 Major Species Of Science Fiction Fan

What do you buy for the pop sci fan in your life? We've scoured the internet and found something for everyone. And we mean everyone. We dug up the most popular posters, sweatshirts and AT-AT dog costumes your favorite geeks didn't even know they were coveting, this holiday season. More »

Think twice before using "mankind" to mean "all humanity," say scholars

What's wrong with "mankind"? It's at the heart of one of the greatest semantic debates of our time. Some say the word is gender-neutral and means "all humanity." To others, "mankind" sounds gender specific and means "a bunch of men without women." They prefer "humanity" or "humankind." More »

A Book That Puts Most Fantasy Writers to Shame

Most fantasy stories contain only a small ration of magic or amazement. A flash of the uncanny, or a glimpse of supernatural wonders, no matter how many cheesy fantasy trappings they're clothed in. More »

Swedish woman charged for sexing herself with human skeletons

When authorities discovered knives and various human skeleton parts in a 37-year-old woman's living room back in September, she was arrested under suspicion of murder. That accusation has since been dropped, but a new one has cropped up in its place: Today she was formally charged with "brott mot griftesfriden" (disturbing the peace of the dead) for using the bones as sex toys. More »

Fan Fiction Friday: Iron Man and Captain America in "Hungry?"

Greetings! Welcome to the first installment of Fan Fiction Friday on io9. For those of you who don't know, I've devoted the last several years of my life to mocking the worst erotic fan fiction the Internet has to offer. More »