There’s a bit of science involved in this, but mostly it’s just grotesque.
The Huffington Post recently reported on a “hot new beauty trend” in Japan, although that description plays fast and loose with the word “beauty.”
Body modification enthusiasts — generally speaking, folks who get their whole bodies tattooed, split their tongues, stretch their earlobes and/or get Teflon implants under their skin — have found a new and temporary way to look different. All it takes is a sharp needle and a bunch of saline solution.
Practitioners inject the saline solution into patients’ foreheads. The solution gathers beneath the skin, forming a bulge so big it looks like a pimple swollen to about 500 times its normal size. Then the doctor pushes in the center of the bulge with his thumb. The saline is forced out of the center, leaving a ring-shaped protrusion on the forehead.
The bad news is that the whole thing seems painful and unpleasant. The good news is that the effect isn’t long-lasting; within about 16 hours, the saline is absorbed into the body and the protrusion disappears.
Take a good look at this beautiful photograph of a girl with red hair.
Now look closer. This isn’t a photograph at all. “OK,” you may be thinking, “it’s a painting. Or an image altered by PhotoShop. Maybe it’s entirely computer generated.”
But it’s not.
Instead, this image was drawn using eight different colors of ballpoint pen, according to Juxtapoz magazine. The guy who drew it isn’t even a full-time artist. Samuel Silva is an attorney in Portugal. Seems safe to say he probably draws better than any other lawyer there or here or anywhere.
To see a larger version, go here.
A boat ride in Greenland nearly turned deadly for an Australian tourist and the boat’s crew.
Jens Møller, who recorded video of the incident, posted this description on YouTube on July 19:
A tourist from Australia came to my uncle and asked if she could get a ride to the glacier just north of Ilulissat, Greenland, so he asked me if I wanted to be his translator. I am from another town where glaciers are fairytales, I was as much of a tourist as the Australian tourist, so I decided to join the crew.
The beautiful scenery was amazing, but the nature doesn’t care about anyone. That day almost became our last day.”
OurAmazingPlanet spoke to Jens, who said he started recording the scene when he heard light cracking noises coming from the glacier. Those on the 18-foot boat thought they might see a small portion of the glacier break away into the sea. They were half right; the ice fell, but it wasn’t a small amount.
The ice-fall generated waves so strong they nearly capsized the boat. Jens stopped recording and headed inside when he realized they were in danger, but the video he captured is pretty impressive. On the way back, OurAmazingPlanet reported, the boat’s engine struck a chunk of ice and was badly damaged. All things considered, they got off lightly.
That’s a Mola mola, a bizarre ocean sunfish that’s becoming a common sight in California waters.
Molas are huge, obviously – its size relative to the human diver isn’t a photographic trick. And they’re weird-looking. The one Botelho shot looks like a moon or a flattened Sprite can. Molas are the heaviest bony fish in the world, weighing an average of 2,200 pounds. Despite their bulk, they’re rather peckish; their mouths are relatively tiny, and they live primarily on jellyfish.
Botelho’s photo is a rare image of a mola in its natural environment. Apparently they’re skittish; they don’t like to be around humans. This one lingered long enough for Botelho to capture the amazing image above … which he mistakenly slipped into a folder of photos he didn’t intend to use.
The attack shut down the Natanz and Fordow nuclear facilities and caused infected computers to play AC/DC’s “Thunderstruck” at maximum volume — over and over again.
An Iranian scientist apparently contacted F-Secure, a Finnish cyber security site, and offered this explanation of the attack:
I am writing you to inform you that our nuclear program has once again been compromised and attacked by a new worm with exploits which have shut down our automation network at Natanz and another facility Fordo near Qom.
According to the email our cyber experts sent to our teams, they believe a hacker tool Metasploit was used. The hackers had access to our VPN. The automation network and Siemens hardware were attacked and shut down. I only know very little about these cyber issues as I am scientist not a computer expert.
There was also some music playing randomly on several of the workstations during the middle of the night with the volume maxed out. I believe it was playing ‘Thunderstruck’ by AC/DC.
No word on who is responsible for the attack. One possibility: Tony Stark. The guy’s smart enough to design a worm, and the song is featured prominently on the “Iron Man 2″ soundtrack. I’d be looking at Jon Favreau, too.
About 35 years ago, Earth came as close as it’s ever come to communicating with extraterrestrials.
At 11:16 p.m. eastern time on Aug. 15, 1977, the Big Ear radio telescope in Ohio detected a narrow band radio transmission from what appeared to be outer space. Jerry R. Ehman discovered the signal a few days later, while examining computer printouts from the telescope.
There it was, a combination of six letters and numbers: “6EQUJ5.”
To most, the output would’ve been gibberish. But Ehman had written much of the software. To him, the letters and numbers spelled out a series of signal-to-noise ratios — the same ratios scientists expected to see if an alien culture, somewhere in the vastness of space, aimed a radio transmission at Earth. It could, Ehman knew, be first contact.
He scrawled a single word in the margin beside the output code: “Wow!” And thereafter, the transmission became known as the Wow! signal.
What the signal represents is ambiguous. Big Ear never detected the signal again, despite repeated attempts. Analysis indicated the signal probably lasted no longer than 150 seconds.
Was it really an alien transmission, or was it something more prosaic — a coded transmission from a satellite or spacecraft, a ground-based signal somehow picked up by the telescope, planetary noise or a one-time quirk, like a terrestrial radio transmission that had bounced off of a piece of space junk for a couple minutes? If it was alien, why didn’t it repeat? Were the aliens doing like Big Ear and searching an ever-changing grid? Could the telescope have happened upon it just before the transmission turned to focus on a different slice of space?
What is sure is that the signal was 30 times stronger than any other detected before or since by SETI, the Search for Extra-Terrestrial Intelligence.
“To this day it remains unexplained,” according to a news release from the National Geographic Channel, “and more importantly, unanswered. But if the Wow! signal really was a cosmic ‘tweet’ from our nearest neighbors, we think it’s high time we send an @reply.”
From 7 p.m. to 2 a.m. central time on June 29, National Geographic will collect tweets that bear the hash tag #ChasingUFOs. On Aug. 15, the tweets and videos from earthly notables will be packaged together and transmitted into space by the Arecibo Observatory, a massive radio telescope in Puerto Rico.
The effort ties in with National Geographic’s new television series, “Chasing UFOs,” which looks really cheesy (see videos below). But even if it’s a publicity stunt, it’s kind of cool to send a tweet into outer space.
For more information, go online to www.thewowreply.com.
The folks at Deadspin.com described this perfectly. I can’t do any better. This happened during last night’s Giants’ game.
Oh, Matt Cain threw a perfect game? Sorry, didn’t notice. Was too busy having my head explode after seeing a secret agent fly around the Bay on his personal water-powered jetpack. This was the first inning. You knew it was going to be a special game.”
“Happy Feet” and “March of the Penguins” don’t seem so pleasant anymore.
A long-buried report by an Antarctic explorer has surfaced, painting penguins as sexual opportunists whose appetites can only be described as extreme.
George Levick, a surgeon and medical officer on Capt. Robert Falcon Scott’s 1910-1913 south polar expedition, penned a four-page pamphlet in 1915 relating his observations of Adelie penguins at Cape Adare. He was so scandalized by what he’d seen that he labeled the pamphlet “Not for Publication.”
It remained hidden for almost 100 years before researcher Douglas Russell recently discovered it at a British natural history museum. Levick’s notes have now been published in the Polar Record journal, according to Fox News.
Turns out our favorite tuxedo patterned flightless birds aren’t so civilized after all.
Levick watched male penguins gang up to abuse their female counterparts and commit necrophilia, among other things.
“I saw another act of astonishing depravity today,” he wrote in 1911. “A hen which had been in some way badly injured in the hindquarters was crawling painfully along on her belly. I was just wondering whether I ought to kill her or not, when a cock noticed her in passing, and went up to her. After a short inspection he deliberately raped her, she being quite unable to resist him.”
At another point, Fox reported, he wrote: “There seems to be no crime too low for these penguins.”
Of course, Levick was anthropomorphizing, taking the penguins to task for actions that would’ve been criminal in humans. Among the things that shocked him was seeing penguins having homosexual intercourse — something that is far from rare in the animal kingdom.
“Homosexual behaviors in animals are no longer cause for hiding data, or even a blush,” according to the Fox story. “Plenty of animals are out of the closet, so to speak, from dolphins and killer whales to bonobos and greylag geese. Some estimates put the number of animal species that practice same-sex coupling at 1,500.”