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Woman Wakes Up After 27-Year Coma

Munira Abdulla, who was 32 years old at the time of her traffic accident in which she was seriously injured in 1991, woke up after 27 years from her coma.

… [she] suffered a severe brain injury after the car she was travelling in collided with a bus on the way to pick up her son from school.
Omar Webair, who was then just four years old, was sitting in the back of the vehicle with her, but was left unscathed as his mother cradled him in her arms moments before the accident.
Ms Abdulla - who was being driven by her brother-in-law - was left seriously injured, but last year regained consciousness in a German hospital.

Omar shared this story to give hope to the people who have family members or friends who are in a coma. He pleads that they do not consider the person dead yet.

Find out more about the miracle on BBC.

(Image Credit: Science Photo Library / BBC)


Dinosaur Discovery the Cause of the Loch Ness Monster Delusion

The discovery of the dinosaurs may have led to the “Loch Ness monster delusion”. The Loch Ness monster legend in 1933 when George Spicer, a Londoner, claimed to have seen ‘the most extraordinary form of animal’ as he drove along a new road at Loch Ness, cross the street.

Standing four feet tall, and with a long wavy neck slightly thicker than an elephant's trunk the creature lurched off into the undergrowth and vanished, leaving behind only a legend that has endured for nearly 100 years.

Full story at the Telegraph.

(Image Credit: Robert Kenneth Wilson / Daily Mail April 21, 1934)


Time To Wear Those Floral Shirts

It's spring and floral shirts seem to be in style especially for men. Though they are usually associated with feminine appeal, men can wear them too. Some women even think it looks cool on men.

Twitter user Sarah Kelly has this to say about floral shirts:

One of the perks of wearing a floral shirt is that it generally goes well with any type of clothing so you can mix and match them without have to worry about your clothes not matching.

Like lavender or pink, florals have a traditionally feminine reputation in fashion and design, so they look especially modern with the most masculine stuff in your closet. Leather jacket? 100 percent. Perfectly worn-in brown suede boots? Yes, please. Black jeans, suits, beards, tattoos, Oh baby yes—they all look amazing with a floral shirt.

(Image credit: Nick Karvounis/Unsplash)


Decoding Brain Signals To Synthesize Speech

There have been efforts to allow people who have been paralyzed or those who have lost their ability to speak such that they may regain that ability once again, though artificially.

This time, a team from UCSF are conducting a study on decoding brain signals which a computer will process in order to synthesize speech.

It's somewhat similar to how the late Dr. Stephen Hawking communicated but this time, they are trying eliminate the need for typing such that there is a direct vocal output from the brain signals, thus speeding up the communication process.

But spelling out letters "is not the most efficient way to communicate," says Dr. Edward Chang, a neurosurgeon at UCSF and an author of the study. That approach allows a person to type fewer than 10 words a minute, compared with speaking about 150 words per minute with natural speech.
So Chang and a team of scientists have been looking for a way to let paralyzed patients produce entire words and sentences as if they were talking. The team studied five volunteers with severe epilepsy. As part of their treatment, these patients had electrodes temporarily placed on the surface of their brains.

The volunteers then read sentences out loud and a computer processed the data from the signals and used that to speak.

Chang was "shocked" at how intelligible and natural the simulated speech was. And a test on volunteers found that they could understand what the computer was saying most of the time. The technology doesn't try to decode a person's thoughts. Instead it decodes the brain signals produced when a person actually tries to speak.

(Image credit: geralt/Pixabay)


Water-Walking Spheres

You’ve read it correctly. These are spheres that can “walk”, or rather, “glide” on water. Utah State University Splash Lab’s researchers discovered this new mode of water surface skipping.

In collaboration with scientists at the Naval Undersea Warfare Center in Newport, R.I., and Brown University, Utah State University Assistant Professor of Mechanical Engineering Tadd Truscott and his associates at USU's Splash Lab have unraveled the physics of how elastic spheres "walk" on water. Their findings were recently published in the prestigious research journal Scientific Reports.

Using high-speed cameras, Truscott recorded the elastomeric spheres as they skip over the tank of water.

"Although this has been a long study, the new modes we discovered make it easier for us to envision using the technology for practical uses like water-walking drones," Truscott said.

Do you think they might make water-walking shoes in the future?

(Image Credit: Utah State University)


Antibacterial Brands Now Want to Promote Bacteria

Oh, the irony!

This whole story by a man named David Whitlock, a 54-year old man who spent every money he had just to get patent filings on a type of bacteria that he hypothesized “would improve skin disorders, hypertension, and other health problems.”

“It was the most important thing I could work on,” Whitlock says. “But I knew I needed patents, otherwise I wouldn’t be able to get anyone interested.” 

He even transformed his Dodge Grand Caravan into his house by squeezing his queen-size bed inside. He stored his lab equipment, on the other hand, inside the barn of his good friend, Walter “Hilly” Thompson. Whitlock would later then depend on Thompson to look for investors willing to invest in his crazy ideas, since Whitlock suffers from autism spectrum disorder.

Now Whitlock now lives in an apartment, and his ideas turned into a $100 million fortune, through the form of a startup company AOBiome Therapeutics, Inc.

The company is seeking to become the first to get Food and Drug Administration approval for pharmaceutical-grade topical live bacteria, with six clinical trials under way to treat acne, eczema, rosacea, hay fever, hypertension, and migraines.
AOBiome’s cosmetics branch, Mother Dirt, already counts tens of thousands of customers for its products, including the spray Whitlock developed from his bacterial elixir; they’re sold online, at natural beauty and food retailers, at Whole Foods Market stores in the U.K., and, starting in June, in the U.S. Several of Whitlock’s early investors are so enthusiastic about AOBiome that they’ve adopted his hygiene habits. “I haven’t used soap or shampoo or antiperspirant or deodorant or toothpaste or mouthwash in five or six years,” says entrepreneur and venture capitalist Lenny Barshack.

And now, big companies also want to do the same.

See the full story at Bloomberg.

(Image Credit:Brea Souders for Bloomberg Businessweek)


“Chalking” Of Tires May Be Violating Fourth Amendment of the U.S Constitution

Do parking enforcement enforcers use chalk to mark your tires? Did you know that they may violating the Constitution when they do that? No? Now you know.

A federal appeals court ruled Monday that "chalking" is a violation of the Fourth Amendment.
The case was brought by Alison Taylor, a Michigan woman whom the court describes as a "frequent recipient of parking tickets." The city of Saginaw, Mich., like countless other cities around the country, uses chalk to mark the tires of cars to enforce time limits on parking.

Alison already received 15 tickets in just a few years. As she received the 15th, she decided to go after the city, specifically to the one who issued her 15 tickets, the parking enforcement officer and “prolific” chalker, Tabitha Hoskins.

"Trespassing upon a privately-owned vehicle parked on a public street to place a chalk mark to begin gathering information to ultimately impose a government sanction is unconstitutional under the Fourth Amendment," Taylor's lawyer, Philip Ellison, wrote in a court filing.

How did the proceedings go? Find out on NPR.

(Image Credit: Raban Haajik/ Unsplash)


Best marketing strategy ever! Steve Jobs Think different / Crazy ones speech

Words of wisdom that are hard to turn down.


Must-see Photos Of Days Gone By

Here is a series of images covering some of the most interesting oddities, rarities and wonders that occurred during the course of history. Enjoy them

via Amaze


The Companies Disney Owns

Disney already owns a lot of your entertainment: Walt Disney Studios, of course, and all that implies, plus Marvel, Pixar, Lucasfilm, ABC, A&E, ESPN, and a host of their subsidiaries.  The House of Mouse is expected to complete the takeover of Fox this summer. That will add 20th Century Fox, Fox Sports Network, Fox Searchlight Pictures, FX, and National Geographic to the Disney lineup, as well as a bunch of of overseas production companies. TitleMax has produced a graphic that shows the companies Disney owns. It's quite crowded. You might be surprised to find out how much Disney you've been consuming without even realizing it.

Click to enlarge the graphic here so that you can read the details. -via Digg


Men and Their Cats

My dad tends to hold the cat's hands when he nods off. (Image credit: rupinjapan)

A dog may be man's best friend, but there's nothing cuter than a bond between a man and his cat. Even men who tell you they don't like cats can be wrapped around a little furry paw.

My dad fixing the pool. His cat likes to help. He would tell you otherwise, but he loves that cat! (Image credit: jchristena)

A ranked gallery at Bored Panda shows us 30 men with their beloved cats. Some are really attractive, and the cats are adorable, too. In between the images is an interview with Chris Poole, who Neatorama readers are familiar with through his cats Cole and Marmalade. I didn't use the number one picture here because it may cause you to go into emotional overload.


Downsides of Working at a Bookstore

It must be a delight for any bibliophile to be surrounded by books every hour of every single day, but there are certainly drawbacks to working in a bookstore and any book lover would know exactly what they are.

Steph Coelho sums it up with five points in which she tries to convince one why they shouldn't work at a bookstore. Half-jokingly, she enumerates these reasons based on her own experiences of working at a bookstore. Here's one of them:

You’ll spend your days wondering how in the world you’re going to be able to read all those books. You look at the tall shelves surrounding you and quickly realize that the truth is you’ll never read all the books, and you panic and fall into a hole of existential dread.

(Image credit: Susan Yin/Unsplash)


The Perfect Question To Strike Up A Conversation At Parties

"Would you rather be a dog or a ghost?"

Just with this one question, without having any context whatsoever, you will know more about the person you are talking to and strike up some interesting small talk with them.

Of course, the interesting part of this question is that the respondent would know just as much about themselves in thinking about their answer more than anything.

According to Tomer Ullman, a professor at MIT’s Department of Brain and Cognitive Sciences, answers to this question (and all far-fetched Would You Rather-type choices) are barely at all affected by a person’s personality, or any demographic information.
The most exciting conclusion of Ullman’s study is the self-revelatory consequences of answering dog or ghost: That we learn more about ourselves upon answering.

There is a mechanism that works in our psyche that steers us toward one answer or another and we are usually not aware of it but this "black box" mechanism as Ullman says, processes those inputs instinctively to arrive at an output.

The most exciting conclusion of Ullman’s study is the self-revelatory consequences of answering dog or ghost: That we learn more about ourselves upon answering. Upon answering, we learn something about this unknowable mechanism within us, and thus we learn something about the inscrutable inner workings of our psyche.

(Image credit: Alicia Tatone/GQ)


The Yodeler Who Sued Yahoo

Wylie Gustafson grew up in Montana and practiced the art of yodeling. He became so good at it that he made a decent living in the late 1980s and early '90s doing voiceovers for commercial ads in Los Angeles. He had already moved to a farm in Washington when he got a call from an ad agency to do a yodel for a small startup named Yahoo.

Founded two year earlier as “Jerry’s Guide to the World Wide Web,” Yahoo was one of the “pioneers of the early internet era.” At the time, they had just had their initial public offering (IPO): Their shares were up 270%, and they were basking in the success of the tech boom.

Gustafson was told the company wanted to run a regional TV ad, and was asked to come up with a yodel — “something light, funny, and ear-catching.”

For national campaigns, Gustafson received union-scale pay, which meant lucrative residuals every time a commercial aired. But since the Yahoo spot was supposedly a regional commercial, he accepted a one-time payment of $590.38.

“I went down to a studio in LA, and in 10 minutes I knocked out probably 20 to 30 different 3-second yodels,” he says. “Then, I went home and forgot all about it.”
Gustafson at Yahoo (via Yahoo)

Two years later, on January 31, 1999, Gustafson was watching the Super Bowl when — lo and behold — he heard his yodel in a national Yahoo ad.

Gustafson was not happy that what he was told was a regional ad was now nationwide... and he learned that Yahoo was using it for the company's signature on everything from the internet to a company-branded bottle opener. Unable to get satisfaction fro the company, Gustafson sued Yahoo for $5 million. Read the story of Wylie Gustafson, the Yahoo yodeler, at the Hustle. -via Metafilter, where you'll find more links about yodelers.   

(Image credit: Yodelking59425)


Cooking Techniques You Might Want To Apply

Become a better cook by incorporating the knowledge of how to sear, poach, blanch etc. Here are 6 techniques of how to perfect these cooking methods.

Via Amuse | Image: Jon Sullivan/Wikimedia

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