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John Carmack, lead programmer for Doom
John Carmack, lead programmer for Doom

Doom is a first-person shooter game developed and published by id Software, released on December 10, 1993. The player assumes the role of a space marine fighting through hordes of undead humans and invading demons. The game is presented with 3D graphics, with 2D enemies and objects. John Carmack (pictured) created the 3D game engine, with action-heavy design by John Romero and Sandy Petersen. Despite controversy over its graphic violence, Doom was a critical and commercial success, earning a reputation as one of the best and most influential games of all time and shifting the public perception of the entire medium. It sold an estimated 3.5 million copies by 1999, and up to 20 million people played it within two years of launch. Termed the "father" of first-person shooters, Doom sparked the rise of online games and communities. It led to an array of imitators and clones, as well as a robust Doom modding scene. Doom has been ported to a variety of platforms, and spawned a long-running franchise. (Full article...)

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Adult female Varroa mite
Adult female Varroa mite

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Swen Vincke in April 2018
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December 10: Human Rights Day; Nobel Banquet in Stockholm, Sweden

Raúl Alfonsín
Raúl Alfonsín
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Today's featured picture

Illustration 4 for "The Raven" by Édouard Manet

"The Raven" is a narrative poem by the American writer Edgar Allan Poe. The poem describes a narrator who is half asleep, poring over ancient books at midnight on a dreary winter night. He hears a tapping sound, and finds a raven at the window, which flies into his room and perches on a bust of Athena. The narrator asks the bird a series of questions, to which the bird replies only "nevermore". Eventually, the narrator falls into despair and ends with his final admission that his soul is trapped beneath the raven's shadow and shall be lifted "nevermore". Originally published in 1845, the poem was widely popular but did not bring Poe much financial success. It has influenced many modern works and is referenced throughout popular culture. This lithographic illustration by Édouard Manet is the last in a set of four plates that depict different stages in "The Raven". Describing this plate, the art historian James H. Rubin wrote: "In the fourth plate, shadow has itself taken on life, becoming the most prominent form. At its bottom it resembles that cast by the bird perched upon the bust, but then in much freer strokes it becomes a dense vapour rising and trailing into oblivion."

Illustration credit: Édouard Manet; restored by Adam Cuerden

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