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Old 10-05-2014, 01:21 AM   #26
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Humans aren't the only ones who enjoy Florida oranges.
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Old 10-05-2014, 11:45 AM   #27
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Quote:
The researchers would now like to feed fruit to crocodilians to see what happens to the seeds.
For some reason this quote was hilarious
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Old 10-07-2014, 01:31 PM   #28
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Apparently the fate of a male angler fish is horrifying.
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Old 10-07-2014, 01:56 PM   #29
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Ahhhh the angler fish, one of nature's failed misogynists.
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Old 10-07-2014, 04:31 PM   #30
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Old 10-08-2014, 08:13 AM   #31
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This neat map suggests an interesting phenomenon: people on immediately opposite sides of a time zone border go to bed at around the same point in real time (and thus almost exactly one hour apart by their respective clock times), suggesting that the Sun, night sky, time since sunset, etc. is a greater influence on sleep schedules than the other influences on our decision of when to go to bed (such as work schedules or any transcontinental biases or cultural beliefs). Put another way, the emergence of date lines / time zones mixed with human instinctual biases about when to go to sleep have given rise to local (i.e. regional; non-transcontinental) cultural values that sharply adjust by one hour as you cross a date line and gradually return to their previous value as you approach the next date line.

Disclaimer: everything written above except the words "this neat map" is my interpretation of the data. Draw your own conclusions. But it's a neat map all the same.
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Old 11-24-2014, 08:49 AM   #32
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(This post contains spoiler links for The Life of Brian.)

The current most popular funeral song in the UK is Monty Python's "Always Look on the Bright Side of Life," reports the BBC.
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Old 12-11-2014, 02:26 PM   #33
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Found this cleaning up my image folder:

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Old 12-11-2014, 02:29 PM   #34
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The hormones are working!
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Old 12-12-2014, 11:34 PM   #35
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When Wikipedia goes full-on TVTropes.

This one is too hilarious:

Quote:
Originally Posted by Wikipedia
The Great Chicago Fire of 1871 was not caused by Mrs. O'Leary's cow kicking over a lantern. A newspaper reporter invented the story to make colorful copy.
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Old 12-17-2014, 04:35 AM   #36
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Interesting article linked in Wikipedia citation. Groupers have been observed teaming up with moray eels to hunt prey. It's pretty rare to see different animal species cooperate together, and it's never been observed before in fish. The footage is pretty dang incredible, the grouper shakes its head and the moray follows as if understanding what the shaking means.
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Old 12-17-2014, 09:01 AM   #37
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Octaazacubane

A hypothetical nitrogen allotrope that's modeled after the very real compound cubane. This takes eight nitrogen molecules and turns them into a cubic structure with bond angels of exactly 90 degrees. N8 hasn't been created yet, but if it was, it would likely be the strongest chemical explosive known to man (or at least that I know of), with an energy density over five times TNT and a detonation velocity that's at least 4000 m/s more than escape velocity.

Science is wonderful.
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Old 12-23-2014, 12:55 AM   #38
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The European mouflon was long thought to be a wild ancestor of modern domesticated sheep. However, it turns out they are in fact an ancient species of feral sheep. When humans were first domesticating sheep from the wild Asian mouflon, some of those sheep escaped and became the European mouflon. Domestication continued for the captive animals who eventually evolved into modern sheep.
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Old 01-28-2015, 07:07 AM   #39
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Populations and land areas of Russia and Bangladesh.

Everyone knows the latter. It's the former that'll probably surprise you.
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Old 01-28-2015, 07:54 AM   #40
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On the same vein, here are some fun stats:

If the entire USA had the same population density as New York City, the population of the USA would be nearly 106 billion. Just the USA.

Let's step it up. Suppose Russia had the same population density as Manilla(the most densely populated city in the world). The population of Russia would be 733 billion. Or a hundred times our current population.
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Old 03-23-2015, 12:13 AM   #41
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Jurassic Park when?

Soon.

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Judean_date_palm
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Silene_stenophylla
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Pithovirus
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Old 07-11-2015, 04:34 PM   #42
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Shenhua: At a place like this with a clear spring, there are fireflies.
Ryo: They're beautiful.
Shenhua: Yes. It's like being surrounded by stars.
Ryo: It's my first time seeing so many fireflies.
Shenhua: Aren't there fireflies in Japan?
Ryo: When I was a child I saw some. But there are only a few of them now.

So I'm watching Shenmue II and this comes up. I have never heard of fireflies, hotaru, being rare in Japan before. But then again I hadn't heard of them being common either. So I decided to look into it.

According to one blogger:

Quote:
Abe went on to say that because of pollution, the fireflies are sadly decreasing as they only live in clean streams.
Huh. How 'bout that. This seems to fit the Shenmue scene nicely and neatly. You have the fireflies mentioned side by side with the clean streams and the declining population. Interesting.

I did not realize that fireflies were an indicator of an ecosystem's water's cleanliness.

I attribute(d) it more to me being an adult now who's always indoors and is used to seeing fireflies, but now I have to wonder: the decline in my personal firefly sightings ... is that attributable to an increase in pollution in Indiana?
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Old 07-13-2015, 06:13 PM   #43
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Heartbreaking. The lesson here is, exterminating rodents with poison endangers the lives of owls and other wildlife in the area.

Poor owl.

EDIT: One commenter shares this:

Quote:
Safe, non lethal way to keep mice away from your home: Obtain dried peppers that are habenero or hotter; grind to powder, and coat baseboard
Not sure how practical this is though. I'd say that if you're in an area and/or line of work where vermin are a chronic problem that there's no way around the grim but necessary approach of trapping them and subsequently exterminating them one way or another.
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Old 07-16-2015, 10:16 AM   #44
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One species of Rafflesia, the Rafflesia lagascae has no chloroplast genome, making it the first land plant in the world discovered missing it.

Only found this out from Wikipedia so reliability and what not but this is still really cool. What no this research venture had nothing to do with YGO.
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Old 07-16-2015, 10:31 AM   #45
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I wonder what is meant by "no chloroplast genome" though. Given my own light research into the topic just now, I would assume it means quite literally, "No DNA housed inside of chloroplasts." Which does not have to mean "no chloroplasts":

Quote:
Of the approximately three-thousand proteins found in chloroplasts, some 95% of them are encoded by nuclear genes.
Quote:
The chloroplast genome most commonly includes around 100 genes which code for a variety of things, mostly to do with the protein pipeline and photosynthesis.
So out of 3,000 chloroplast proteins, only 5% in your average plant will have their blueprints for manufacture stored inside of the chloroplast itself. That 5% (or 150) roughly corresponds with the 100 genes "commonly" housed inside of the chloroplast. It's not a big stretch of the imagination to think that many of these 100 or so genes might have migrated out of the chloroplast in Rafflesia and into the nucleus. I'd have to read the study in detail to see whether they were looking for relevant genes in the entire cell extract or whether they centrifuged off the nuclear DNA and were only looking at DNA that exists inside of chloroplasts and mitochondria.

All this stated, I'm probably barking up the wrong tree and it's probably exactly what it would sound like on a superficial read to most people: Rafflesia probably has truly lost its cpDNA. This is reflected by the fact that Rafflesia is an obligate parasite that cannot conduct photosynthesis. If it could still conduct photosynthesis but had lost its chloroplast genome, well then obviously we'd be thinking to look elsewhere for the missing genes. But given that it can't even do photosynthesis, I really don't see the need to go looking for the missing genes inside of the nucleus: it's more probably the case that the plant went parasitic first (while still boasting chloroplasts), was parasitic for a long, long time, and because it flat out wasn't relying on its chloroplasts anymore there came a day where it straight out lost them ... and it didn't even fucking matter because yay parasitism. ^^;

Thanks for the info, Emi!
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Old 07-17-2015, 11:06 PM   #46
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Only the Japanese could think of something scarier than sharks.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Tumblr
The Ningen, a Japanese cryptid, is a very large animal allegedly sighted by Japanese fishers. The name Ningen literally means “human”. The creature not only has a face, but arms and hands as well.
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Old 09-12-2015, 03:25 PM   #47
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In 1993, the domestic dog was classified as a subspecies of the Gray Wolf. Recent evidence suggests, however, that all the genetic material which makes the dog similar to the gray wolf was acquired by dog species via interbreeding with the gray wolf. While they are closely related, it's not because dogs evolved from gray wolves.

So, it turns out we really don't know where dogs came from, yet at least.
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Old 09-12-2015, 04:07 PM   #48
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Doppleganger View Post
In 1993, the domestic dog was classified as a subspecies of the Gray Wolf. Recent evidence suggests, however, that all the genetic material which makes the dog similar to the gray wolf was acquired by dog species via interbreeding with the gray wolf. While they are closely related, it's not because dogs evolved from gray wolves.

So, it turns out we really don't know where dogs came from, yet at least.
Iiiiiiiiiinteresting. But I have to wonder: say we find out that dogs are actually domesticated jackals or some other canid ... wouldn't it still be highly probable that these ancestors themselves are offshoots of wolves? (Or a geologically recent common ancestor shared by them and wolves?) Like ... let's put some numbers to it:
  • Say the gray wolf is 100% gray wolf.
  • Say a species of African jackal is 100% jackal, but that in turn jackals can be shown to be 95% gray wolf and 5% mutations.
  • And say that studies find that dogs are 70% jackal and 30% gray wolf, and it's believed that the gray wolf bits are because of attempts to breed early domesticated dogs with wild gray wolves.
  • Then wouldn't it still mean that a dog is:
    • 30% raw gray wolf
    • 95% of 70% derived gray wolf, as 95% of jackal DNA is gray wolf DNA
    and therefore signify that dogs are 30% + 0.95*70% = 96.5% gray wolf?
If instead the science will show that gray wolves and dogs' ancestor's common ancestor is, say, some utterly non-canid mammal that goes way way back, and that even though wolves and dogs' ancestor are both classified as canids they in no way came from a nearby same source ... then sure, that would be revolutionary. But I feel like all this study will end up showing is, "Dogs came from a sub-Saharan canid that wasn't a wolf .............. who in turn, OF COURSE, came from wolves several million years earlier."

I mean, I guess they might find that wolves and (say it's jackals) jackals diverged a really long time ago, and that it's wrong to think of jackals as descendants of wolves when really they're more like cousins. And thus we also should quit thinking of dogs as descendants of wolves when really they're more like nephews of wolves. But man ... I guess we'll just have to wait and see!
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Old 09-13-2015, 12:28 PM   #49
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I think the major wrench in your probability estimate is that "gray wolf" is actually not 100% gray wolf - modern gray wolves differ genetically from 'ancestral' gray wolves, so it's difficult to therefore conclude that jackals are 95% gray wolf and 5% mutations.

After that, the gray wolf actually evolved from a common ancestor with the coyote. It's a fairly recent split, rather than an ancestral one. Jackals are descended from the more basal animal that eventually split off into the coyote, wolf, and dog(?). The only basis behind the wolf-dog split is because of the shared DNA and how recently gray wolves split off from the coyote lineage. If you assume that the wolf DNA was actually due to breeding with wolves, then dogs may have indeed derived after jackals emerged or from a candid species predating that.

This touches on a research project of mine I've been doing when I'm bored at work - do any ancestral species exist on Earth alongside modern day descendants? The vast majority of species right now only share a common ancestor with a fossil or their direct ancestor is a fossil. The famous coelacanths, for example, are not the same species as the fossil coelacanth, but are two species in a genus that last shared a common ancestor with a fossil specimen.

There exist some examples with plants - such as the giant sequoia and ginko biloba, but both of those organisms are unchanged for thousands of years because they've lived thousands of years. And a couple thousand years is a flash in the pan for evolutionary genetics. So my quest will take some time to analyze.
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Old 09-13-2015, 01:19 PM   #50
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Cats are better than dogs because they upgrade all the way to lions and tigers, whereas dogs only get up to wolves and hyenas.
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