Life

Granted this video is a promo for the New Scientist‘s recent issue on “existence”, it’s pretty interesting, if you are OK with incomplete answers. (Figuring out how the universe got so large is still a serious head-scratcher.) My takeaway after watching this, is if “something” is not really that different from “nothing” (according to our human perception) then, well, there is still much to ponder …


Shotgun ShellVia Neatorama:

If you’d like to go out with a bang, Holy Smoke LLC offers to pack your cremated ashes (or those of your loved ones) into ammunition cartridges. You tell them the caliber or gauge, ship the remains to them, and they’ll load the cartridges:

Once the caliber, gauge and other ammunition parameters have been selected, we will ask you (by way of your funeral service provider) to send approximately one pound of the decadent’s ash to us. Upon receiving the ashes our professional and reverent staff will place a measured portion of ash into each shot-shell or cartridge.[…]

Our return shipment to the sender will be the finished ammunition, boxed in available labeled ammunition boxes. We also offer mantle-worthy wooden carriers with engraved name plates. Your return shipment will also include any unused ash in a separate, labeled container.












Sounds a bit like panspermia but occurring within our inner solar system. Interesting post from David L. Chandler of MIT News Office: According to many planetary scientists, it’s conceivable that all life…




The magical thing about the United States is that our nation is a rich tapestry — of gonorrhea cases and bankruptcy, that is. Find out what surprising, ignominious category your home state…


SupercontinentAlasdair Wilkins on io9.com has a great post about the past and future of our planet’s continents. Definitely worth a read:

Earth’s continents are constantly changing, moving and rearranging themselves over millions of years — affecting Earth’s climate and biology. Every few hundred million years, the continents combine to create massive, world-spanning supercontinents.

Here’s the past and future of Earth’s supercontinets.




Another portion of “the miracle of life” mastered by scientists? Science Daily reports: Researchers at Brown University and Women & Infants Hospital have invented the first artificial human ovary, an advance that…






Clark KentI’m not suggesting that “shyness” means you secretly are an alien from the planet Krypton, who has to disguise one’s true nature from everyone around you … but it can feel like that at times. Reports LiveScience:

The brains of shy or introverted individuals might actually process the world differently than their more extroverted counterparts, a new study suggests.

About 20 percent of people are born with a personality trait called sensory perception sensitivity (SPS) that can manifest itself as the tendency to be inhibited, or even neuroticism. The trait can be seen in some children who are “slow to warm up” in a situation but eventually join in, need little punishment, cry easily, ask unusual questions or have especially deep thoughts, the study researchers say.

The new results show that these highly sensitive individuals also pay more attention to detail, and have more activity in certain regions of their brains when trying to process visual information than those who are not classified as highly sensitive.