The spiral galaxy known as NGC 3521 lies in the constellation of Leo, a mere 35 million light-years away. Now go flush and see if you understand the connection between the two. O. Maliy/ESO hide caption

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This artist's impression shows the surroundings of the supermassive black hole at the heart of the active galaxy NGC 3783 in the southern constellation of Centaurus. M. Kornmesser/ESO hide caption

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Swarms of locusts in Madagascar, or clouds of elementary particles, without sound, odor, flavor or color? Reality is harder to pin down than you first might think. Bilal Tarabey/AFP/Getty Images hide caption

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Gold exists, just as it really is, just as the physicist knows it to be, and that has nothing to do with us. Michal Cizek/AFP/Getty Images hide caption

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Physicists searching for a "Theory Of Everything" are like kayakers paddling against the current, in search of the water's source. hide caption

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High-energy physics in action: an image of an event in CERN's CMS detector during the search for the Higgs boson. CERN hide caption

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Girls are more likely to take high school physics if they see women in their communities working in science, technology, engineering and math, a new study finds. Dominik Pabis/ hide caption

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T.S. Eliot (1888 - 1965), winner of the 1948 Nobel Prize in Literature Hulton Archive/Getty Images hide caption

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