Month: August 2014

More unusual optical illusions will blow your mind

If last week’s optical illusions didn’t blow your mind then this week’s illusions will surely finish you off.  Below is the second part of our collection of mind-blowing optical illusions including an explanation of the “spinning woman” optical illusion that so many readers argued with Reeko about. Spinning woman (explained) Come on guys, do you really think Reeko would put up a picture that was wrong?  Per the deluge of email reported by the lab monkeys last week, here's a three-part picture of the spinning lady optical illusion which should convince you.  See - she spins both ways! (and tell your teacher there are only fourteen shades of gray in the background, not fifty).     Moving train – which direction is it moving? If you stare at this optical illusion

Cool science pictures that make you go “huh?”

It is said that a picture is worth a thousand words.  In these interesting science pictures, they are worth a single word – “huh?”.  Check out the cool science pictures below.  If they don’t cause you to scratch your head in wonder, they will at least put things in perspective. The sun in a different light This picture of the sun was taken using a different wavelength filter giving us an entirely different perspective.   How big is the moon? The surface area of the moon is 37.9 million square kilometers.  How big is that?  Here’s a true-scale image of the United States superimposed over the moon.   How do astronauts eat in space? Below is a food tray used aboard the Space Shuttle.  Notice the velcro used to hold the food in

Uh oh – more African elephants being killed than are born!

Africa’s elephants have just crossed into a pretty scary area. Researchers recently that found more African elephants are being killed than are born. They warn that at this rate, the animals could be wiped out in 100 years. African elephants are killed for their tusks. Called “poaching”, the elephants are killed, their tusks removed, and their bodies left behind. The tusks, which are made of ivory, are sold by the poachers for thousands of dollars. Researchers say about 7% of the elephant population was killed between 2010 and 2013. Births on the other hand, only increase the elephant population by 5% each year. At this rate, there won’t be any elephants left on the planet by the year 2100. What you can do about this? The trade

New temporary tattoo makes electricity from sweat (but only makes you cool temporarily)

Like marriage, tattoos often seem like a good idea at the time. But teens often fail to realize that the cool barbed wire tattoo is going to be little more than a picket fence when they get old. Now you can get a temporary tattoo that eventually wears off (hopefully by the time you have to go out and get a job) and serves a useful purpose while you wait for it to disappear. Researchers at the University of California San Diego have designed a sensor which can be imprinted onto temporary tattoo paper and when affixed to a person’s arm, can not only monitor a person’s progress during exercise, but generates electricity from the person’s sweat. The sensors works by detecting lactate, which is naturally

Lone Star tick bite causes bizarre allergy to all forms of meat

Physicians interviewed by Popular Science believe a bizarre new allergy, which causes a potentially deadly allergic reaction to all forms of meat, is caused by the bite of a tick - and it's spreading pretty fast. One physician said that he had seen an increase of 200 alpha-gal allergy cases in the past three years – up from practically zero in 2011. The condition is believed to be caused by the bite of the Lone Star tick, a species of tick that is widespread in the United States ranging from Texas to Iowa in the Midwest and east to the coast where it can be found as far north as Maine. The bite of the tick cause a person to develop a meat allergy to all forms

Watch what happens when astronauts on the moon drop a hammer and feather at the same time

For a long time, Reeko has been trying to convince his readers that despite mind-boggling implications, Galileo was correct – all objects fall at the same rate regardless of how heavy they are. In other words, mass does not affect gravitational pull. Theoretically, in a vacuum, if you dropped a school bus (yes, yes, imagine the principal inside if you really must add dramatic effect) and a feather from a tower, both would hit the ground at the same time (and the principal would be very unhappy). Wait – don’t leave yet! We’re not making this stuff up! In 1971, on his last day on the moon, Apollo 15 Commander David Scott tested this theory. In one hand, he took a heavy 1.32kg geological hammer. In

Who’s your mummy? How (and why) ancient Egyptians preserved their dead.

  Unlike gangsters and politicians who go to great lengths to hide dead bodies, ancient Egyptians did everything they could to ensure the dead body stuck around. At the time, Egyptians believed survival of the body after death was necessary in order to “live again” in the afterlife. Thus the preservation of their dead was extremely important to the people of ancient Egypt (Editor note: Reeko said we were specifically forbidden to mention the “double your mummy back” guarantees offered by the ancient Egyptian funeral homes). Surprisingly, researchers this week found that the Egyptian practice of mummification was being carried out much earlier than previously thought. They found that embalming substances from the oldest-known Egyptian cemeteries showed mummy-making from as early as about 4300 BC – about 6,000