"Anything else you want to add? Don't do drugs kids?" "Yeah That's a good one."
In a highly (un)scientific experiment, BuzzFeed video producer Andrew Gauthier spent one night drunk and one night stoned while performing identical tasks. He filmed the results for our
British comedian Josie Long
explores All the Planet's Wonders in a very short series on BBC radio: Collecting
Your scientific Twitter hashtag of the week: #overlyhonestmethods [more inside]
is a free, downloadable
zombie film set entirely at the Large Hadron Collider at CERN
. [more inside]
In the late 1970s the UK's Anglia Television ran a respected weekly documentary series: Science Report.
But when the show was cancelled in 1977, the producers decided to channel Orson Welles in their final episode. The result was Alternative 3
. Over the course of the hour, the audience would learn that a Science Report
investigation into the UK "brain drain" had uncovered shocking revelations: man-made pollution had resulted in catastrophic climate change, the Earth would soon be rendered uninhabitable, and a secret American / Soviet joint plan was in place to establish colonies on the Moon and Mars. The show ended with footage of a US/Soviet Mars landing from May 22, 1962. After Alternative 3 aired, thousands of panicked viewers phoned the production company and demanded to know how long they had left to change planets. [more inside]
In 1973 and 1975, two one-hour television documentaries aired in the US: In Search of Ancient Astronauts
) and In Search of Ancient Mysteries
). The same producers also put out The Outer Space Connection
) in 1975. All were narrated by Twilight Zone's Rod Serling
. In 1976 a series was developed. Since Serling had passed away in 1975, popular actor Leonard Nimoy was chosen as host. In Search of...
ran for six seasons, from 1976 - 1982, and was devoted to discussing unusual mysteries and phenomena. All 144 episodes can be seen on YouTube. Playlists: Seasons 1 and 2
. Seasons 3 and 4
. Seasons 5 and 6
Qualcomm and the X Prize Foundation have launched a new contest: Envision and build the equivalent of Star Trek's medical tricorder
, a portable health monitoring device that can remotely diagnose patients. The winner will receive $10 million
. [more inside]
Four minutes of the best moments of stuff burning, breaking, freezing, exploding, melting, and generally reacting in interesting ways. [more inside]
Century 21 Calling
- Dreamily retro footage of the 1962 Seattle World's Fair
, AKA the Century 21 Exposition
, including a visit to the Bell Systems
pavilion. A slice of space age science propaganda
, the fair gave Seattle some of its most enduring landmarks in the form of the Space Needle
and the Alweg Monorail
, and, of course, brought Elvis to town
One of my favorite blogs
happens to be local to me. Eric Berger, the Houston Chronicle's "SciGuy" usually reports on the weather
. But he also posts entertaining and serious stuff as well. [more inside]
"is a unique comprehensive resource for all those with a personal or professional interest in food safety. Dr. [Doug] Powell of Kansas State University, and associates, search out credible, current, evidence-based information on food safety and make it accessible to domestic and international audiences through multiple media. Sources of food safety information include government regulatory agencies, international organizations such as the World Health Organization (WHO)
and the Food and Agriculture Organization of the United Nations (FAO)
, peer-reviewed scientific publications, academia, recognized experts in the field and other sources as appropriate." (Description from website.)
The folks responsible for bites also run the more entertainingly named barfblog
Today's issue of Nature contains
with a rather unusual author list. Read past the standard collection of academics, and the final author credited is... the FoldIt
multiplayer online gaming community. Even though most of them had no biochemistry experience, the human players of FoldIt turned out to be better at identifying three-dimensional protein structure patterns
than the algorithms of Rosetta@Home
. (Previously on MeFi
On July 17th, NASA's Wide-field Infrared Survey Explorer
(WISE) satellite completed its first survey of the entire sky viewable from Earth
. After just seven months in orbit, WISE -- a precursor to the planned James Webb Space Telescope
-- has returned more than a million images that provide a close look at celestial objects
ranging from distant galaxies
. The first release of WISE data, covering about 80 percent of the sky, will be delivered to the astronomical community in May of next year
, but in the meantime we can see some of the images and animations that NASA has released to date: Galleries (containing just a small selection of images)
. Videos and Animations: 1
, 2 [more inside]
Year On Earth
breaks it down, explaining the complicated mechanics involved in trying to determine how long a year really is, why seasons and ice ages happen, and how not all years are created equal.
Paleontologists discover the skull of a massive predatory whale (Leviathan melvillei
) in Peru. Discovery News presents this finding with the best of all possible illustrations
High End Monitors Medical Imaging" presents: Pin-Up 2010
, an x-ray pinup calendar. (Possibly NSFW)
A nearly 25-year study
has concluded that children raised in lesbian households were psychologically well-adjusted
and had fewer behavioral problems than their peers
. Results were published this month in Pediatrics
: the Journal of the American Academy of Pediatrics. (Abstract
. Free PDF
). [more inside]
What do Singing in the Rain
, Live Is Life
, Don't Worry, Be Happy
, I Will Survive
and Ça fait rire les oiseaux
have in common? In a study, French-speaking Internet users identified these five pop songs out of 100, as the most pernicious earworms
. Here are their top 25 picks
, including audio clips. [more inside]
"So I called my dad over and about five metres away he started swearing, and I was like 'what did I do wrong?' and he's like, 'nothing, nothing - you found a hominid'."
The remarkable remains
of two ancient human-like creatures
(hominids) have been found in South Africa.
Some researchers dispute that the fossils are of an unknown human species,
but others say they may help fill a key gap
in the fossil record of human evolution
. [more inside]
""Anti-Gravity Hills" (also known as "Gravity Hills
", "Spook Hills", or "Magnetic Hills
") are natural places where cars put into neutral are seen to move uphill on a slightly sloping road, apparently defying the law of gravity. Typically, the "spooky" stretch of road is rather short (50-90 m), only a few meters wide, and surrounded by a natural hill landscape, without nearby buildings. Such places are found in several countries all around the world, and have been tourist attractions for decades. They should not be confused with the "Mystery Spots
found in amusement parks. These are generally tilted cabins, purposely built as such; a person walking inside feels disoriented, getting a very strong impression of standing at an angle in a perfectly normal room." CSICOP
and Discovery News
explain the phenomenon, and here's the paper on which the CSICOP article was based (PDF)
Quest for a true 3D Mandelbrot Fractal
- a very nice exploration of Mandelbrot/Julia set fractals in various kinds of 3D space.
The observable universe just got a bit smaller.
Johan Mauritsson and his colleagues at Lund University in Sweden have released what appears to be a video of an electron oscillating on a wave of light
Quantum Mechanics: Myths and Facts (pdf)
, a recently-updated paper on the Cornell arXiv
peer-review site. By Hrvoje Nikolić of the Rudjer Bošković Institute in Croatia. [more inside]
The Guardian discusses homeopathy: Jeannette Winterson
supports it, Ben Goldacre
A topographical bedtime story. (Warning, contains spheres!)
The Buckminster Fuller Institute is now accepting submissions for it's new, annual design challenge contest.
Submissions must be applicable with real-world technology, solving real-world problems with a minimum of ecological impact. The offered prize is $100,000, on par with some of NASA's challenges. ( Buckminster Fuller on Wikipedia
, and E2
Wi-fi Routers: Silent blinking death
. Via badscience.net, where it was posted in response to what sounds like a truly awful show
. Electrosensitivity previously discussed here
Bay Area Yuri's Night 2007
Bay Area Yuri's Night 2007 Yuri's Night Bay Area will be held at Moffett Field in the NASA Ames Research Center's
massive SOFIA hangar
, home to the world's largest aerial observatory. Our host for the evening is pioneering space traveler Anousheh Anasari
, the first privately funded female to reach orbit. She is joined by Dr. Chris McKay
, world renowned expert in astrobiology and terraformation with the Space Science Division of NASA Ames Research Center, as they welcome you to a dazzling array of interactive art installations and science demos, interwoven with musical and acrobatic performances by some of the world's finest entertainers. Complete write up. Partially via MeFi's own lannanh.
Female koalas indulge in lesbian "sex sessions",
rejecting male suitors and attempting to mate with each other, sometimes up to five at a time, according to researchers.
PhET - Physics Education Technology
offers this astoundingly large library of online physics simulations
. Play orbital billiards. Land on a cheesy moon.
Experiment with sound.
Or try more advanced quantum physics simulators
. Still bored? Try the "cutting edge" catagory.
Here's the complete index
Wired: What We Don't Know
How did life begin? What's the universe made of? Why do we sleep? Is the universe actually made of information? How does the brain produce consciousness? Why do we still have big questions? 42 of the biggest unanswered questions in science.