Archive for October, 2010

Could Microscopic Parasites Be Responsible For Transforming Dogs Into Chupacabras?

Friday, October 22nd, 2010

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Most Chupacabra sightings/corpses can be easily identified as mangey, feral dogs who unpredictably roam desolate areas attacking livestock. But why are these dogs being transformed into legendary monsters?

We might have an answer!

In a recent “Monster Talk” podcast posted on Skeptic magazine’s website, OConnor explained that the mite responsible for the extreme hair loss seen in “chupacabras syndrome” is Sarcoptes scabiei, which also causes the itchy rash known as scabies in people. Human scabies is an annoyance, but not usually a serious health or appearance problem, partly because our bodies are already virtually hairless and partly because the population of mites on a given person usually is relatively small — only 20 or 30 mites.

Does this mean we can now we can consider Chupacabras as a werewolf equivalent to dogs? Once they’re bitten is there any coming back?

This just go so much more awesome.

[Science Daily]

[Monster Talk on iTunes]

Fermilab Builds “Holometer” To Prove Your Eyes Are Really 3D Glasses

Friday, October 22nd, 2010

Is our reality really 2D? Is our concept of third dimensional space really an optical illusion? Are our eyes deceiving us to believe we are anything other than Super Mario sidescrolling through life?

Is the above commercial featuring Peyton Manning and Justin Timberlake really a frightening prophecy?

Fermilab is currently building a Holometer to determine the answer to all these questions. Or something. To be honest, I really can’t even wrap my head around what they are talking about but here is open season for you kind readers to take your stab at it.

[Pop Sci]

Breakthrough Could Lead To Printable Body Armor Tougher Than Kevlar

Friday, October 22nd, 2010

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Israeli researchers have discovered a way to assemble transparent nanospheres that unite to form the stiffest biological material the world has ever seen. This could lead to printable body armor, tougher steel and more bullet-proof bulletproof glass.

Frank Castle wants to know the shipping cost from Tel Aviv to Brooklyn.

[Pop Sci]

Zombie Outbreak & Infection: A Mathematical Study

Wednesday, October 20th, 2010

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I am not nearly smart enough to take all of this in, but many of your surely are. Several math wizards finally broke down the hard numbers on a zombie outbreak. How fast would it spread? When is it statistically hopeless for survivors? At what rate and frequency do we need to merc zombies to have any chance?

Numbers! Zombies! Read it all AFTER THE JUMP!

(more…)

Military Pay $9 Million To Develop Flying Humvee

Wednesday, October 20th, 2010

A flying Humvee? Don_t scoff, Pentagon wants one | Technology | Los Angeles Times.jpg

Finally, jerks of 2024, you know what car you’ll be driving. DARPA has awarded $9 million in contracts to develop a flying war time vehicle that can drop supplies and engaged in limited air to ground combat.

[LA Times]

Frightening New Carnivorous Mammal Discovered In Madagascar

Monday, October 18th, 2010

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New, toothy, endangered mammal discovered in Madagascar. Dreamworks already in talks with John Tuturro to voice to the creature in Madagascar 3: The Undiscovered Country.

[Discovery]

Robotic Jetpacks? They’re Real

Monday, October 18th, 2010

According to Martin Aircraft, they’ve developed a fully robotic jetpack that can be used to drop supplies to troops or bombs on enemies. It uses regular fuel and can take off from the back of a flat-bed truck.

[Fox News]

Did History Vindicate Ruined Pilot’s Incredible Survival Story?

Monday, October 18th, 2010

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Air Force Lt. David Steeves died in 1965, a liar. According to popular thought, his claim to fame was a hoax at best and treason at worst. He was divorced, slandered and wound up in court suing a publisher who’d once courted him to write a book about his miraculous story of survival.

13 years later, a gang of Boy Scouts stumbled upon proof that corroborated Steeves’ story. A missing piece of the puzzle that could have silenced decades of doubters had finally been found.

So what was the story?

On May 9, 1957, Air Force Lt. David Steeves, piloting a T-33 training jet, took off from Hamilton Air Force Base, near San Francisco, on a flight to Arizona. Then, like a character in the television show the “Twilight Zone,” he disappeared.

Days passed, then weeks. When no trace of Steeves or the plane was found, the Air Force declared the 23-year-old pilot officially dead.

But, 54 days after he vanished, a gaunt, bearded Steeves, filthy clothing hanging from his body, hobbled into a camp in the remote backcountry of Kings Canyon National Park, east of Fresno. He told an almost unbelievable tale of survival.

Get the full, insane, heartbreaking story here.

[LA Times]

The Bear That Mauled HItler [WeirdThingsTV]

Friday, October 15th, 2010

Podcast: Rogue Robot Division

Thursday, October 14th, 2010

weird things podcast SM

The trio announce their plans to start their own rogue robot SWAT team. Brian describes how to break earth-shattering news to the world and totally not have people think you’re a crackpot. Comrade Justin cheers on the military prowess of America’s rivals.

Subscribe to the Weird Things podcast on iTunes
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Download url: http://www.itricks.com/upload/WeirdThings101410.mp3

Listen now

 

This episode brought to you by:

Bill Meeks @billmeeks MeeksMixedMedia.com
Joel Pickard designer & illustrator JoelPickard.com
Vincent 404 @vincent404

Weird Things book club picks:

Justin’s pick: The Walking Dead Compendium

Andrew’s pick: Star Trek VI

Brian’s pick: The Luck Factor

Links:

UFO over Mongolian airport
Space and aeronautics historian James Oberg JamesOberg.com

Has The Air Force Landed Their Top Secret Space Plane?

Thursday, October 14th, 2010

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Conspiracy nuts, on your mark! The top-secret X-37B space plane has already gone missing once this year (proving the craft to be far more agile than amateur military tech experts predicted) and now it has again disappeared. Many now suggest that the plane is preparing to land or has landed already.

The Air Force is not saying anything, because after all it is a top-secret military space plane.

Our guess? Invisibility shield. But then again, we run a blog about Nazi-fighting bears.

[Fox News]

Scots Honor Poland’s Nazi-Bashing Bear Soldier

Thursday, October 14th, 2010

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From the grim depths of World War II shown spires of inspiration bright enough to pierce the darkness. Bravery, honor and humanity rarely seen beyond the bleakest of situations.

Among them: Private Wojtek the bear that beat the Nazis.

(Oct. 13) — The accomplishments of the ursine allies of World War II are often overlooked, but not by the city of Edinburgh. They’re building a $318,000 monument to honor “Private Wojtek,” a 500-pound brown bear that served in the Polish Army in the fight against the Axis before retiring to the Edinburgh zoo.

“Wojtek” translates to “the happy warrior,” and the bear’s contribution to the Polish military effort was largely noncombative. He was an unofficial mascot for the 22nd Army Corps, providing much-needed entertainment and distraction during brutal desert warfare.

We can just see the posters now, flitting along the Warsaw streets: Thanks to Private Wojtek, Hitler has to grin and BEAR it!

Also, in this Daily Mail story, Wojtek is also remembered for his voracious beer and cigarette habit, officially making him more of a man than you.

[AOL]

Peruvian Pilot Recounts Insane 1980 Dogfight With UFO

Thursday, October 14th, 2010

On April, 11 1980 a Peruvian pilot came across a UFO. They locked into combat and this is what followed:

When the Peruvian Sukhoi was already near the UFO, the object made a sudden stop, violating the laws of inertia. The fighter-bomber flew past it, with both vehicles at an altitude of 11,000 meters (36,000 feet) “the object pulled away quickly, gaining altitude at the same time. Later, it stopped abruptly, and I had to maneuver to avoid colliding with it,” said Santa María.

It was thus that Lt. Santa María and his aircraft went from being hunters to prey. He was being pursued by the UFO at 19,000 meters (62,000 feet), nearly 1000 meters beyond the aircraft manufacturer’s specifications. Furthermore, his fuel supply was running low.

Faced with this situation, Oscar Santa María decided to abandon his mission and withdraw, even as the UFO continued to ascend, losing itself in space. He was eighty-four kilometers away from his base, and 22 minutes had elapsed since his first contact with the UFO.

After landing, the UFO reappeared, remaining visible to the air base for nearly two hours.

AND the UFO showed off for two hours? Glad that on the way to inventing space travel and superior flight technology they stopped to pick up a little good sportsmanship.

This particular story has apparently been repeated for years amongst Peruvian pilots but has only been made public now thanks to government declassification.

[Inexplicata]

Seal Species Declared Dead In 1892 Makes Dramatic Return

Thursday, October 14th, 2010

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Russian and American traders could not kill Guadalupe Fur Seals fast enough through the 1890s. Kill, kill, kill, kill, was the order of the day. But try as we might, you can’t keep a good seal down. Although apparently we can lose track of them for a century and change.

15,000 of the thought-to-be-totally-wiped-out species were found straight chilling in a few caves off the coast of Mexico.

[Guardian]

Chinese Researchers Want YOU To Hunt For Their Bigfoot

Thursday, October 14th, 2010

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Got a hankering to hunt down a Chinese Bigfoot? Your ship has come in, sailor!

The Hubei Wild Man Research Association (HWMRA) in China’s Hubei province announced they are recruiting researchers from around the world to join its team in relaunching the search for the Bigfoot creature in the Shennongjia forest region. Luo Baosheng, vice president of HWMRA, told Xinhua, China’s state run news agency, that team members must be in good physical health and it is preferred they are between the age of 25 and 45 years old. “Most importantly, we want the team members to be devoted, as there will be a lot of hard work in the process”, he said.

No word on how to submit your application.

[Seer Press]

Michael J. Fox Goes Back to ‘Back to the Future’

Wednesday, October 13th, 2010

From the Too Cool Not To Share file, first the first time in decades Michael J. Fox has returned to his most beloved role as Marty McFly for this promo for the 2010 Spike TV Scream Awards, which will feature a 25th Anniversary Back to the Future cast reunion. The promo is an obvious homage to the original teaser trailer for the film. Here’s hoping the reunion is as awesome as it appears.  Get ready to go back in time!