On Tuesday, NASA made an exciting announcement: Its Voyager 1 spacecraft, which was first launched in 1977, is cruising interstellar space, which the agency describes as “a region between the stars filled with a thin soup of charged particles, also known as plasma.” While Voyager 1 still technically remains within the solar system, this is the furthest that a human spacecraft has ever traveled — and the first time that one has ever entered a new cosmic realm.

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(Source: micdotcom)

How did our online quiz-takers compare with the results of our nationally representative telephone survey? One unsurprising finding: If you take a quiz called “What kind of library user are you?”, you probably know the answer.

Wisdom from Susannah Fox.

I believe there’s an error here. Should it be one of every two?

Right you are about the typo — should be 2 of every 5. Very different meaning otherwise! Thanks so much.

Tags: mcchris

2 of every 5 U.S. households have only wireless phones, but the growth rate of wireless-only households slowed last year.

2 of every 5 U.S. households have only wireless phones, but the growth rate of wireless-only households slowed last year.

"To realize its full potential, the Internet, as a medium and infrastructure (cables, etc.), has to be redefined, legislated, and maintained as a public domain where freedom of speech operates fully. Access to the Internet should be guaranteed globally in the same way as education, healthcare, food, and housing are guaranteed now in some countries."

— An associate professor at Concordia University in Montreal, Canada, on future threats to the Net by 2025

More expert thoughts on Net threats in the future

Tech experts hope the open structure of the internet will prevail in the coming decade. But they also fear threats to the internet’s connectivity will arise from efforts by nations to restrict content, increased surveillance, and commercialization of too much online activity.

We’ve got a NEW REPORT from our expert series out today, and we’ll be spending the day talking all things future of the internet, the Web at 25, and the threats that face the Net in the coming decade. Follow along here and on Twitter with #web25.

New on the Fact Tank blog: Rich Morin discusses Facebook’s “emotional content” newsfeed experiment — what did they actually find? Was it ethical?

Tags: Facebook

Calling all librarians, educators, civic leaders, or members of the public who are interested in your local public library’s role in your community: 

We have new quiz tool that allows you to create your own version of our library user quiz and invite members of your community to take it. You can learn how your community’s members use their local public library, how they think about their library’s impact on the community, and how they view the importance of libraries in the digital age. 

This post offers helpful information on the quiz and how to take it. Click here to go directly to the quiz.

Did you know:

  • Older Americans are least likely to use libraries
  • Just 4% of Americans are “e-book only” readers
  • Those who use libraries are more likely than others to be book buyers

7 surprises about libraries found in our surveys


The Curiosity rover on Mars, taking a selfie.

In light of the SCOTUS cellphone privacy ruling today, here’s a helpful guide through some of our numbers on cellphones, smartphones, and all things mobile tech.

People aren’t walling themselves off behind their cellphone or computer screen in an effort to avoid face-to-face interaction.

But is that always the case?

According to our 2012 survey, 67% of cellphone owners found themselves checking their phone for messages, alerts or calls — even when they didn’t notice their phone ringing or vibrating; and 29% of cell owners described their phone as “something they can’t imagine living without.”

Tags: mobile