When astrophysicist Carl Sagan said, “We’re made of star stuff,” he was speaking about the fact that human beings are quite literally composed of elements that were forged within the cores of stars that went supernova. “Some part of our being knows this is where we came from,” he posited, “because the cosmos is also within us.” Photographer Ignacio Torres wanted to illustrate this amazing concept, so he used glitter, dust, and dramatic lighting to produce a series of photos like this one, which “suggest [a] celestial creation.” Check out more of his stunning images, presented in GIF form, on his website. [Scientific American]
Finally a team of physicists has devoted the proper time and effort to answering the age old question, “Is it better to bite into a round piece of candy, or continually suck on it?” In a paper poetically titled, “Sticky physics of joy: On the dissolution of spherical candies,” researchers from the University of Graz in Austria described the results of an experiment in which they placed spherical candies in a water bath made to replicate the pH levels and movement of a human mouth and observed the way they dissolved over time. The researchers expected the candy to vanish exponentially, but their findings indicated that the candies dissolved at a constant linear rate instead. What does this mean for candy enthusiasts? Keep reading »
I am certain that I am a woman. Here’s proof: these two mammary glands, my monthly menstruation and, oh yes, I am utterly addicted to chocolate.
The way I eat chocolate — the way I fiend for it — you’d think there was some Darwinian motivation behind it. Throughout my life, I have always kept a bar in the freezer or surreptitiously brought the chocolate chips back to my bed for a midnight to three a.m. snack. And I’m not alone; the US consumer eats about 12 pounds of chocolate a year.
So, why am I craving the brown stuff almost every day? I know people dub themselves “chocoholics,” but is there any proof that doing cocoa is actually physically addictive? And if we’re chowing down the 3,400-year-old treat like it is going out of style, is it really that bad for us? It seems like I had only heard conflicting reviews of my go-to taste bud charmer, so I wanted to sit the jury down myself and get a verdict once and for all. Keep reading »
Want to know a neat trick? Apparently if you add pink lemonade concentrate to gin (or vodka) and tonic, you’ll have a pretty pink cocktail that turns into a crazy bright aquamarine OUTER SPACE DRINK under a black light. So round up your friends, mix up some of these Aurora Borealis cocktails, re-watch the footage of the Curiosity landing, and play a rousing game of “Pin the mohawk on Bobak Ferdowsi.” Cheers! [Boing Boing]
This Saturday — tomorrow! — night, the Earth will pass through a cloud of debris from the Swift-Tuttle comet, resulting in a fantastic display of meteors streaking across the sky (or through the atmosphere, if we want to get technical). Known as the Perseid meteor shower, this celestial show is like Christmas for space nerds, and I’ll definitely be heading out to the country to see it. Want to nerd out with me? Here are six tips and tricks for having the best stargazing experience! Keep reading »
So, how awesome was the successful landing of the Curiosity rover on Mars last night? As incredible as it was to watch space exploration happening live, we must admit we were a bit distracted–along with the rest of the nation–by a certain technician in the control room with a mohawk and immaculate bone structure. Turns out his name is Bobak Ferdowsi, and he’s the Flight Director on the Mars Science Laboratory Curiosity mission. Yesterday, he was a relatively unknown NASA employee; today he’s America’s dreamboat. So let’s get to know Mr. Ferdowsi a bit better, shall we? After the jump, five Mohawk Guy facts you should know… Keep reading »
Yeah, yeah, Mr. Wizard, Nickelodeon’s resident science guy, taught us all lots about how electricity worked, and gravity and all kinds of other stuff. But seriously? Sometimes he could be kind of jerky –I mean, he spent his life hanging out with 8-year-olds so it’s not like I blame him. This hilarious video shows us clips of some of Mr. Wizard’s bitchy behavior. [YouTube]
Dolphins are like humans in a lot of ways: they have sex for pleasure, mingle with different social groups, and enjoy looking at themselves in the mirror. They also spend a lot of time talking to each other in whistles, clicks, and pulses (coincidentally, this is how many of us communicate with our best friends). So here’s the million dollar question: will we ever be able to crack the dolphin language code? Scientists are hard at work studying dolphin vocalizations, a task which is as challenging as it is fascinating. George Dvorsky over at i09 sums up what they’ve learned so far… Keep reading »
Women hold less than 25 percent of STEM (science, technology, engineering and math) jobs within the field, and are less likely than males to work in a STEM occupation. But while I understand that there is a severe lack of women within the science field, this PSA out of the European Union of what my days would be like as a female scientist looks anything but appealing. Keep reading »