Archive | Mystery

Project Elysium: VR to revive deceased loved ones

A development screenshot from Project Elysium.

A development screenshot from Project Elysium. Paranormal Games.

Mark Walton via Ars Technica:

How far is too far when it comes to pushing the boundaries of virtual reality? As VR devices grow ever more sophisticated—and the tools to create software for them ever more accessible—where do we draw the line between what’s ethically acceptable in the real world and what’s ethically acceptable in the virtual world?

One of the developers putting this question to the test is Australia-based Paranormal Games. Project Elysium, its entry into the upcoming Oculus VR Jam 2015, treads some shaky moral ground by promising to create a “personalized afterlife experience,” reuniting people with loved ones who have passed on. Exactly how the developer hopes to do this isn’t clear at this point (it will be required to showcase screenshots by April 27, followed by video footage the week after to be eligible for the jam’s grand prize), although a screenshot from Project Elysium’s development does show a friend of the studio being transformed into a 3D model.

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Brush with a Goddess

I burst into my home at about 1:30 AM, and there she was, John Tim in tow. Before I could even eek out a proper greeting, she let out a bellow, the kind you’d expect from a tortured owl. Planted herself into the middle of the living room, still howling she grabbed and tugged at the clothes of the four gentleman present. She was wobbly and reeked of peach schnapps, and we weren’t gonna have any part in it. After her first assault failed, she looked up and smiled, “Don’t you guys get it? I love you all equally!” and then continued howling, this time the shrieking of holy orgasm. She then tried to mount my roommate sitting at his computer desk, no take, so she went on to just spread her legs as wide as possible, still moaning. She tried removing her top, that attempt was stifled.… Read the rest

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Office Manager at Dental Practice Operated on Patients Behind the Dentist’s Back

Screen Shot 2015-04-18 at 1.49.32 PMAs if we all needed another reason to dread the dentist. An office manager at a Bronx dental practice, who is not a licensed dentist in New York or anywhere else, “inspected patients, diagnosed patients, took X-rays, injected patients with anesthetics, [and] even gave patients root canals.”

Via New York Daily News:

While the dentist was away, his office manager played one.

Valbona Yzeiraj, 45, was arrested Thursday on accusations of masquerading as a dentist at a Bronx dental office and charged in a 13-count indictment with pulling teeth and even performing root canals.

The paper-pusher who dubbed herself “Dr. Val” is not a licensed dentist in the state, or anywhere else in the nation. But that didn’t stop her from treating patients for cash.

“She inspected patients, she diagnosed patients, she took X-rays, she injected patients with anesthetics, she even gave patients root canals,” Bronx Assistant District Attorney Patrick McCadden said at Yzeiraj’s arraignment Thursday afternoon.

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Synesthetic Art: Artist Paints What She Hears

John Lennon – Imagine [Listen]

John Lennon – Imagine [Listen]

Artist Melissa S. McCracken has synesthesia, a phenomena in which sounds, mathematical numbers, and other abstract concepts evoke specific colors. Because McCracken finds it frustrating trying to describe the phenomenon, she has decided to paint what she hears. She explains at Bored Panda:

Synesthesia, although not disorientating, can sometimes leave me at odds trying to describe what I can see to others.

Painting in oils and acrylics is a way to express and exhibit the beautiful colors that I see on a day to day basis, whether it’s hearing someone’s name, or that song on the radio. I paint a variety of artists from Led Zeppelin to Stevie Wonder.

Radiohead - Bodysnatchers [Listen]

Radiohead – Bodysnatchers [Listen]

According to her bio:

“I paint music.

Until I was 15, I thought everyone constantly saw colors. Colors in books, colors in math formulas, colors at concerts. But when I finally asked my brother which color the letter C was (canary yellow, by the way) I realized my mind wasn’t quite as normal as I had thought.

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Evolution puts checks on virgin births

IMAGE: A LITTLE FIRE ANT WORKER FORAGES FOR FOOD. ALL WORKER ANTS IN THIS SPECIES ARE STERILE FEMALES.

IMAGE: A little fire ant worker forages for food. All worker ants in this species are sterile females.

Okinawa Institute of Science and Technology (OIST) Graduate University via Eureka Alert:

This news release is available in Japanese.

It seems unnatural that a species could survive without having sex. Yet over the ages, evolution has endowed females of certain species of amphibians, reptiles and fish with the ability to clone themselves, and perpetuate offspring without males. Researchers at the at the Okinawa Institute of Science and Technology Graduate University (OIST) found that in species where females have evolved the ability to reproduce without males relatively recently, fertilization is still ensuring the survival of the maximum number of healthy offspring and thus males are still needed. The research was published online in The Science of Nature.

A species can increase its numbers faster in harsh environments when its females do not have to find worthy males.

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Weird Relationships

"Rimbaud" by Étienne Carjat - Close-up from Arthur Rimbaud [1872] - foto de Étienne Carjat. Licensed under Public Domain via Wikimedia Commons.

Rimbaud” by Étienne Carjat | Licensed under Public Domain via Wikimedia Commons.

Most of us, at this point in our lives, have been in some odd relationships. What is weird to one person is different to another of course. We all have different baselines.

Some of us find it odd if our partner doesn’t really get into Christmas, or doesn’t think Breaking Bad is all that good. Others are totally comfortable being in polyamorous, master/slave relationships and using women as furniture. Read more about that here.

Personally I feel more comfortable with weird. I have been extremely close to a woman for years now who is odd — and also rather brilliant. The only people that make me feel uncomfortable are those that have a preconceived notion of what normal is.

With that said, one can go too far, as I certainly have in the past. One can always take things to a place that is a bit dark, and that maybe, just possibly, you need to back away from, to protect your own mental health and those around you.… Read the rest

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The Benign Weirdness of Seattle’s Mystery Machine

No, this isn’t some peculiar homage to Scooby Doo. This is something much weirder than some deranged fanboy or candy wielding creepazoid in a cartoon themed van.

Weirder, certainly, but in a curiously benign way. An Operation Mindfuck kind of way.

This tale is all about a slightly sinister soda machine on the streets of Seattle with a ‘Mystery’ button that dispenses random cans of soda pop.

mysterymachine1

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Who is behind it and why remain a mystery, but I’d like to think that some acid addled benevolent prankster or hilariously warped social scientist is behind the conspiracy.

Atlas Obscura has the details:

On the corner of John Street and 10th Avenue East, in the heart of Seattle’s Capitol Hill neighborhood lies the world’s most mysterious soda vending machine. Nobody knows the true history of the rusting machine, which looks like it was spat straight out of the Seventies, but locals continue to plunk down their change and the machine never seems to run out of stock.

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As Above, So Below: True Meaning of The Cross With Crichton Miller

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“We are on firmer ground when we reflect on how our ancestors used the stars — for timekeeping, calendar-making, and navigation at sea.”
The History of Astronomy by Heather Couper and Nigel Henbest, p.8

The Golden Thread of Time by Crichton E. M. Miller traces the history of the cross from Paleolithic and Neolithic hunter-gatherers to stone age seafarers and megalith masons. He argues that the cross was not merely a religious symbol, but a device used to measure time, navigate, make astronomical observations, and create architecture. He first came to this realization when attempting to discover an ancient theodolite capable of accuracy to 3 minutes of arc in order to measure the pyramids of Giza. He suddenly found himself kneeling before such a device in the form of a cross. It was this discovery, or rediscovery, that initiated his journey to understand the true meaning and history of the cross.

“How did the cross originate?” I asked.… Read the rest

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