Scientists excavated the skeletons of more than 140 children and 200 baby llamas from part of Peru's northern coast, in what they think may have been the world's largest known child sacrifice. They believe the ritual slaughter took place 550 years ago in an attempt to combat rising sea temperatures and coastal flooding.
Thai lawmakers voted to pass an amendment that legalizes the medical use of marijuana and kratom, a tropical tree native to Southeast Asia that is traditionally consumed for its stimulant and painkiller properties.
Researchers used a bacteria-infecting virus to manufacture tiny wires in a computer's memory. This advance makes it possible to move data from memory to a hard drive in nanoseconds instead of milliseconds, which could help create faster supercomputers.
A metropolis of at least 200 million active termite mounds—covering an area the size of Great Britain—was discovered in northeastern Brazil. The cone-shaped structures, connected by vast tunnel networks and hidden by scrubby forests, date from about 700 to nearly 4,000 years ago.
Before-and-after radar images show that a flank of Indonesia's Anak Krakatau volcano disappeared—possibly in a landslide—during an eruption. This may have triggered the tsunami that killed hundreds of people last December.
Government authorities used deadly force against students who were protesting social security tax increases and reduced pensions; they also fired professors and scientists who criticized the crackdown. The president of the Nicaraguan Academy of Sciences was forced to flee the country.