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Watching science on the Web

  Click for video: The
  primate fossil known
  as "Ida" has caused
  a scientific stir.

A growing number of online ventures are serving up regular doses of science video to fill the gaps in TV coverage - including some ventures that are led by media-hopping TV types.

The latest entrant in the field is "Science Nation," a weekly video series funded by the National Science Foundation and created by former CNN producers. The first installment, released Monday, focuses on Earth's "alien" species - that is, extremophile organisms that can survive in Antarctica's frozen deserts or volcanic vents at the bottom of the ocean.

You'll find video clips that focus on NASA researcher Richard Hoover's work as well as a feature story by CNN alumna Kate Tobin and an extremophile slideshow. Another ex-CNNer, Peter Dykstra, is also contributing to the project. Future installments of "Science Nation" will explore the science of tornadoes, artificial retinas, hydrogen cars and environmental cleanup in rural China. NSF's news release provides more of a preview.

Miles O'Brien, another widely respected science/space journalist who was forced out of the CNN fold, has several irons in the fire: You can watch him hold forth on the nation's infrastructure crisis on PBS' "Blueprint America" series. You can read his "Uplinks" blog at True/Slant. And during last month's Hubble repair mission, he did the anchoring duties for Spaceflight Now's online video coverage.

All this is just the tip of the video iceberg: Here are the beginnings of a mini-TV guide for science video online. Please feel free to pass along your favorites as comments, and I'll add them to the list:

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