Forty-five years ago, we thought colonizing the moon was surely in our future. But once the space race was won, the moon was found to be not useful enough to justify the expense. And the expense of getting there was astronomical. Maybe that’s where the word came from. Our dream of living on the moon would be even more expensive.
This video from Whendover Productions (previously at Neatorama) explains the economics of space colonization. The planned Mars mission looks different when you look at it from the financial side. The Apollo missions also look different. Did we really spend that much money just to beat the Soviets to the moon? -via Digg
3D printing is revolutionizing a lot of industries, but perhaps no other use of the technology is quite as fascinating as its use in medicine. While its applications in human medicine are amazing, we can't help but be enthralled when we see animals getting a new lease on life thanks to a little 3D printing. Here are a few stories of animals who were saved thanks to the new technology.
1. Fred the Tortoise
Fred is a female red-footed tortoise from Sao Paulo who was injured in a forest fire that destroyed most of her shell. Rescuers thought the poor tortoise looked like Freddy Krueger, hence the not-traditionally-feminine name. By taking pictures of her shell from all angles and comparing them to a healthy tortoise, veterinarians were able to create a 3D model of a shell, which they then printed in four individual pieces from a corn-based plastic. It took 3 months all together for the shell to be made into a reality and, unfortunately, Fred came down with pneumonia just after her surgery. Fortunately, she survived the ordeal and artists began to come forward offering to help paint the rescued animal's shell so she looked like a traditional, healthy red-footed tortoise. The team took their time to ensure they could find the right paint that wouldn't damage the shell or present a health risk to poor Fred.
Eventually, Fred will need a new shell, but for now, she's cruising in style and couldn't be happier with her new mobile home.
2. AKUT-3 the Sea Turtle
In 2015, a loggerhead sea turtle, scientifically named AKUT-3, was found in Turkey with a damaged jaw that left it unable to eat on its own in the wild. He was quickly taken in by the Sea Turtle Research, Rescue and Rehabilitation Center at Pamukkale University and the director of the center immediately recognized that 3D printing might be the turtle's best hope. The center then partnered with BTech Innovation and used CT scans to create a 3D model of the turtle's damaged jaws, which allowed for a custom-fitted implant made from 3D printed titanium.
You can’t lose when you 1. think outside of the box, and 2. tell the people what they want to hear, even if it’s something they haven’t thought of before. That may even work on your opponent! This is the latest from Raynato Castro and Alex Culang at Buttersafe.
In 1900, the city of San Francisco decided not to bury any more dead people in the city limits. In 1914, they decided to move the existing cemeteries, which meant digging up thousands of remains. All San Francisco residents were to be buried instead in Colma, a small community south of the city.
Today, Colma is home to 1,800 living residents and 1.5 million dead including some of America’s most famous personalities such as the denim trouser pioneer, Levi Strauss, newspaper tycoon William Randolph Hearst, and business tycoon Amadeo Giannini, the founder of Bank of America.
The large number of under-the-ground population have earned the town the somber moniker “the City of the Silent”. Colma’s residents, however, take their situation with humor. The town’s official slogan is “It’s great to be alive in Colma.”
Mercury is a dense metal, but it’s also liquid, which makes it a rather odd substance to play experiment with. The same volume of mercury is 13 times heavier than water. Mad scientist CodyDon Reeder wondered if you could flush mercury down a toilet. No, not your toilet, because it’s dangerous to put mercury in the sewer system. But a working toilet with a closed water system? Let’s see.
He also wondered how much mercury it would take to stop up a toilet, and then what would it be like to flush a toilet with mercury and no water! A toilet tank of mercury weighs about 240 pounds, so that in itself presented challenges, but Cody managed to do it. This is way more interesting than you might think. YouTube commenters say he should be nominated for an Ig Nobel next year. -via Metafilter
Jared Leto's portrayal of The Joker in Suicide Squad was not well received by fans and critics, but kids who don't know better think this System Of A Clown version of The Joker is the coolest thing since pre-torn skinny jeans.
Of course, there will be people dressed as Leto's Joker who will wear the costume with pride, so try not to grab your head and scream in their face when you see them standing there looking cool in that cheesy costume!
Michigan State professor and urological surgeon David Wartinger noticed that some of his patients tended to come home from vacation with fewer kidney stones, mainly because they told him about passing kidney stones while visiting the Disney theme parks in Orlando. One man passed three kidney stones, one every time he road the Big Thunder Mountain Railroad. Wartinger decided to investigate by going to Florida himself.
First, Wartinger used a 3-D printer to create a clear silicone model of that three-time-stone patient’s kidney. He then filled the kidney with stones and urine. (Not real urine, I assumed, as I know the park already has plenty.) Then he and colleague Marc Mitchell bought two tickets and flew to Orlando.
Of course, the researchers had to get permission from Disney World before bringing the model kidney onto the rides. “It was a little bit of luck,” Wartinger recalls. “We went to guest services, and we didn't want them to wonder what was going on—two adult men riding the same ride again and again, carrying a backpack. We told them what our intent was, and it turned out that the manager that day was a guy who recently had a kidney stone. He called the ride manager and said, do whatever you can to help these guys, they're trying to help people with kidney stones.”
Amazingly, the fake kidney passed the stones in the real urine, in 16.67 percent of the rides in the front of the coaster and 63.89 percent of rides in the back of the coaster.
Most animals don't understand the words that come out of human mouths, but they've all learned to listen for one particularly rewarding word- "food". When critters hear the word "food" they come running, and even if the critter in question is a bit skittish around humans they'll stick around to see if they can score a free meal when the human's not looking. Urban critters like rats and raccoons have learned another important word that makes their hungry little lives much easier-"free". And when a city dwelling critter hears the words "free" and "food" used together in a sentence they know they won't be dumpster diving for their daily meal!
Celebrate the animal kingdom's bottomless appetite with this Free Food t-shirt by NemiMakeit & Licunatt, it's the cutest way to tell the urban wildlife you're down to throw some scraps their way!
Corporations and other large companies are still figuring out how to use social media to help them create a buzz and make money, and just when they start to get their online act together they blow it big time, often via Twitter.
And yet, as this Rock Paper Cynic comic shows, these large companies still expect their social media managers to work internet miracles, convinced they hold the secret to creating a viral video...
Sam Klemke recorded some footage of himself every year from 1977 through at least 2011 (and probably since then as well). In this video, small clips are shown in reverse order. This project was eventually made into a documentary.
While we see him getting younger, he constantly talks about how old he is getting. I suppose that’s normal. Today is my birthday, and I can’t help but think about how I’ve never been this old. Yet I think the same thought every year. -via reddit
“Curry” has become the unofficial cuisine of England, which has boosted that country’s culinary reputation considerably. It was once considered exotic, but shouldn’t have been, since it is eaten around the world and even appeared in an American cookbook as far back as 1824. In fact, the only place that doesn’t have a curry tradition is India.
That word “curry,” now as then, has a meaning as vague and inclusive as its ingredients. It can mean any stew made with “Indian” spices, as well as the yellow spice powder (usually a mixture of turmeric, coriander, cumin, and fenugreek) used in raisin-studded chicken salads. It’s not difficult to trace the spread of curry—it traveled by sea, following traders and slavers and laborers, the ancient vectors of colony and conquest—but the word itself is an altogether different beast, a bastard with many potential parents and no clear pedigree.
The Portuguese first came to India’s palm-toothed southern shores in 1498, in search of cardamom, cloves, and black pepper, each among the world’s most valuable commodities. Lacking a word to describe the spicy, coconut-thickened stews they found there, they went ahead and made one up: carel, taken from the Tamil word kari.
From those early traders, the Indian dishes we call curry followed the spread of imperialism. Read about how curry took over the world at the A.V. Club.
The Lord of the Rings showed us the cozy underground homes of the Shire, where Hobbits live. They were intriguing, how they meshed with the surrounding natural world, and their Middle-Earth details. There are quite a few Hobbit homes in the real world, either specifically designed to be Tolkien or that happen to share the esthetic. Underground homes are quite eco-friendly and energy-efficient, and some of these houses fit into the landscape so well that you might not even realize they are there, like the Dune House in Florida.
Look too quickly, and you may miss the fact that a house is built under all of the greenery. It’s called the Dune House, is located in Atlantic Beach, Florida, and is practically hidden in the landscape. As far as Hobbit houses go, this one is completely decked out. It’s a two story building and was built in 1975 by famed architect William Morgan — that means he had a jump on the trend before LOTR was even a thing. The home is worth $1.4 million dollars, and it definitely looks expensive inside.
Well, The Hobbit was published in 1937 and The Lord of the Rings trilogy in the ‘50s, but most of the ten homes on this list are relatively recent and resemble the Hobbit homes in the movies. You can even visit and sleep in a couple of them!
Role players love their dice, but not all die are created equal. While percentile dice require you to roll two different dice, it's still less unwieldy than using a D100 like the one pictured above. I'm sure you can imagine it doesn't stop roling very easily.
The Robot's Voice has compiled a list of the 10 most shameful dice of all time and while I don't agree with all of their decisions (I'm a sucker for crystal dice no matter what anyone says), their criticisms are hilarious.
The following is an article from The Annals of Improbable Research, now in all-pdf form. Get a subscription now for only $25 a year!
by Marc Abrahams, AIR staff
In the film Good Will Hunting, a college janitor came to be recognized as a genius. Something vaguely -- very vaguely -- akin to that happened during the 2005 Ig week.
For some time now, Roy Glauber has been a vital participant in the annual Ig Nobel Prize Ceremony. By spontaneous tradition, the Ig audience throws paper airplanes at the stage during the entire ceremony (and the people on stage waft some of them right back). The airplanes accumulate so rapidly that it is necessary to have two people spend the entire ceremony sweeping them off. Roy, a Harvard physics professor, has nobly, stylishly, and vigorously swept the stage for ten long years. Like Gandhi, Roy patiently pursued humble tasks in the long years before the world at large came to appreciate his greatness. Two days before the 2005 Ig Nobel Ceremony came the news: Roy Glauber has been awarded a Nobel Prize in physics.
First, try to answer this question from your own experience. Don’t spend too much time thinking about it. I immediately said Hamlet, maybe because that was the first of Shakespeare’s plays I ever knew about. My mother had to read it for college, and she read most of it out loud to me. It was years before I knew there were any others. We studied a half-dozen or so of Shakespeare’s plays in school, but not the one play that is the most performed now. According to data from the site Shakespearances, these are the William Shakespeare plays most often performed by professional troupes since 2011.
Way before a game called GO made people want to go out and catch pocket monsters there was a portable game called Catch The Demogorgon, but it didn't last very long due to numerous fatalities. The game involved tracking down a creature many people thought to be imaginary, but since the game was in 8-bit it didn't include information on catching or killing the creature so kids were at its mercy when they finally managed to track it down. Things got even stranger when kids who'd played the game started claiming they had traveled to a parallel dimension called the Upside Down, supposedly the home of the Demogorgon. But parents blamed the whole thing on Dungeons & Dragons, and in a misguided attempt to save their children D&D was banned but the Demogorgon was allowed to go about its business...
Show the world why it's okay to catch pocket monsters but real monsters should be left alone by wearing this Catch The Demogorgon t-shirt by Haplo, it's strangely appealing!
Visit Haplo's NeatoShop for more old chool cool designs:
While the alien race we know as the Klingons appeared in the original Star Trek TV series, they only achieved the iconic look and used their own language in the first Star Trek feature film in 1979. The language they spoke in Star Trek: The Motion Picture consisted of words made up by James Doohan, who played Engineer Scott. The role of non-human species and their languages would expand for further movies. About that time time, Marc Okrand of the National Captioning Institute was preparing to do close-captioning in real time for the 1982 Academy Awards.
During preparations in L.A., Okrand was having lunch with an old friend when serendipity struck. The friend was working on what would become Star Trek II: The Wrath of Khan, and the film just so happened to need a linguist to dub a conversation between Vulcans Spock and Saavik (played by a young Kirstie Alley). Using clues from the little bit of Vulcan spoken in the first film, Okrand got to work. But Vulcan at this time wasn't really a language. "The scene was filmed with the actors speaking English. My job was to make up gobbly-goop that fit the lip movements and then was dubbed in," Okrand says. Two years later, he was asked backed to work on the third Star Trek movie, but this time the task was a bit more complex: to develop the Klingon language.
Russian history in U.S. schools is usually limited to Lenin, Stalin, the space race, and maybe now they include the fall of the Soviet Union. Depending on your age, you likely learned about Nicholas II, the last Tsar and his family from movies, because it was a very dramatic story. There were several movies about Rasputin, and I would recommend the 1971 film Nicholas and Alexandra. But even more people recall the movies Anastasia (1956) or Anastasia (1997), neither of which tell us much about the family or the Russian revolution. They are about Anna Anderson, who was presented as the youngest of the Tsar’s four daughters, Grand Duchess Anastasia Nikolaevna. Anderson was only taking advantage of the rumors that Anastasia was the only member of the family who had survived the assassination of 1918 and had been missing ever since. How did those rumors ever get started? Probably because, despite the Soviet Union's refusal to say anything about the Tsar's fate, there were a few people who knew that not all the Romanovs were buried together.
In the spring of 1979, Alexander Avdonin and Geli Ryabov discovered the pit in which five of the seven Romanovs (and four of their servants) had been buried. Since the Communists were still ruling Russia at the time, Advonin and Ryabov decided to keep the finding a secret. The pit wouldn’t be officially opened until 1991, the same year that the Soviet Union dissolved.
DNA and skeletal analysis matched the remains in the pit to Tsar Nicholas II, Tsarina Alexandra, Yevgeny Botkin, Alexei Trupp, Ivan Kharitonov, Anna Demidova, and three of the four grand duchesses. William R. Maples (a forensic expert) concluded that the two bodies missing from the family grave were that of Tsarevitch Alexei and Anastasia. However, Russian scientists believed that it was the body of Maria that was missing. Using a computer program to compare photos of the youngest grand duchess with the skulls of the victims from the mass grave, they identified one the bodies in the pit as that of Anastasia.
People tell you to follow your dreams when you're young, but if you get too old before you've turned your dreams into a monetary reality those same advice happy people start calling you a dreamer.
Dreams don't have an expiration date but we print one on them anyway, and then, as this comic from Blazers At Dawn shows, the expiration date arrives and we're forced to torch those dreams and draw up new ones.
This morning, redditor twilling8 found a skunk wandering around his neighborhood in Ontario with a Coke can stuck on his head. What to do? He could ignore the skunk, and go about his business, but that could return to haunt him later. Or he could risk getting sprayed.
Right now signs are littering lawns across the U.S. urging us to vote in the upcoming election, but we don't have to restrict the statements made by our lawn signage to political matters- we can tell people to scram too.
Plain or fancy, the addition of crown molding can make a cheap home suddenly look established and well-built, but only if it’s done right. There are a lot of factors to consider: the size and shape of the room, the size and shape of the molding, the cost of the materials and labor, and the final look you are aiming for. Get some design tips and see 100 examples of what crown molding can do for a room at Housely.
Japanese comedian Kosaka Daimaou, whose real name is Kazuhiko Kosaka, has a character he does named Piko-Taro. Here, Piko-Taro sings a little ditty about pens and pineapples. It doesn’t make a bit of sense, but since he posted it one month ago, it’s been covered and remixed by dozens of YouTubers.