"'There are recognizable patterns of each person’s body odor that remain steady….Therefore, every person has his/hers own odor and this would allow his/her identification within a group of people at an accurate rate higher than 85%. This result leads the way to improve personal identification that is less aggressive than other biometric techniques being used today.' The system could eventually be installed in airport to 'sniff' passenger as they pass through."
You know what, if you had a bunch of people from Science come to my house and lecture me about slumber I would probably fall fast asleep too.
"Scientists have developed an algorithm which can analyse a book and predict with 84 per cent accuracy whether or not it will be a commercial success," and Jennifer Weiner has already accused them of sexism.
"A whisky sipped in a room smelling of fresh-cut grass with the sound of sheep 'baa-ing' in the background tastes different from having the same drink in a sweet-smelling, red room with piano music playing, research suggests."
In 2002, RZA of the Wu-Tang Clan told a reporter from Blender about his post-9/11 health routine: drinking colloidal silver daily. "During the Black Plague, a lot of rich people didn't get sick… because of the metal intake—the silver in their bodies from their silverware and dishes," he said. Blender published the article under the excellent headline "IS THE RZA TURNING BLUE?" He has not, as far as we know.
Recently I sent an email to Silver List, a listserv of colloidal silver enthusiasts who share their experiences and advice about making and taking the liquid, asking for people who would talk to a journalist. I included a [...]
You know, I already have enough people in my life hassling me to get my shit together, I don't need a fruit bowl on my ass to boot.
"As a side project, [anthropologist Andrew Irving] decided to record the inner dialogues of people walking in New York City—to map part of the city’s thoughtscape, layered beneath its audible soundscape. He approached strangers at different points in the city [and asked them] to wear a microphone headset attached to a digital recorder and speak aloud their thoughts as he followed closely behind with a camera. He would not be able to hear what they were saying, Irving explained, and they would be free to walk wherever they liked and continue their business as usual. 'I was surprised by how many said Yes,' Irving says—about 100 in all. By [...]
Sometimes when we walk through the mall, my boyfriend Scott will whisper: “How many people here do you think have held a human heart?” Or: “Do you think that guy ever removed a brain?” Scott has held a human heart and he says it's heavier and whiter than you would think. He will remove a brain from a female cadaver in March.
Scott is in his second year of pre-med. He, along with two other students, based on their high grades in anatomy class, are the body preppers for this semester’s anatomy lectures. The dissections are supervised by two part-time anatomy professors. One practices as a physician’s assistant, [...]
In November, Knopf bought a 900-page debut novel by Garth Risk Hallberg for almost $2 million. It’s a tremendous gamble, regardless of the book’s quality, if one that many publishers were happy to make: more than 10 houses bid more than $1 million, according to the Times. Predicting a novel’s fate in the commercial or critical marketplace is a fool’s gambit, as indicated both by works like the first Harry Potter novel, which was repeatedly rejected before becoming, well, Harry Potter, and by expensive flops like Charles Frazier’s Thirteen Moons. The novelist Curtis Sittenfeld said, "People think publishing is a business, but it’s a casino."
But what if publishers [...]
"[Y]ou may be surprised to learn that there’s no scientific evidence whatsoever to support the idea that alcohol makes you put on weight. That’s hugely counter-intuitive, I know, because alcohol certainly is said to contain lots of calories. But the curious fact remains that alcohol isn’t fattening. Here’s just some of the evidence." — Now you could click through to see what this evidence says and decide for yourself whether or not Science writer Tony Edwards' claim that alcohol is actually good for [...]
A few months ago, Awl Music switched over to a new kind of curation. (Yes, sorry, "curation." You know: choosing videos.) Instead of picking videos one at a time, by hand (by mouse?) we started picking shows from YouTube and Vimeo, and set the site up to automatically post new episodes from the shows that we like. Right now there are 8 shows that get fed into the stream: La Blogotheque, a live music series produced by the French music website of the same name; Beat Making Lab, a PBS Digital Studios program in which some guys introduce a compact electronic music studio to various cultures [...]
We didn't learn that much from the massive "Economic Impacts of Tax Expenditures" study that gets a big spread in the Times today, except: if you want them to be rich, have your children in Seattle, Salt Lake City or New York City, and don't have them in Atlanta, Miami or Memphis. But we already knew that.
On June 11th, 1993, I had my one and only "religious experience." It began, as is tradition, by staring into the cold hard eye of a raptor. It lasted for 127 minutes, in which I was in a complete state of raptor—sorry, rapture (these words are synonyms to me). I emerged from the movie theatre a changed person. I was like Saint Paul after he fell off his horse and realized, "Holy crap, Jesus is a god-man-thing!" Only my revelation was about dinosaurs, and so is obviously superior.
I had borne witness to the birth of Jurassic Park. I had seen it bite through the fence of public anticipation and [...]
• In Impotence: A Cultural History, Angus McLaren, and leave it to a scholar named Angus, found a 17th century French midwife with a suggestion: "An enchanted husband should drink water from the mouth of a 'young stone horse.'" (To be performed, apparently, while the horse himself is drinking.) My new favorite euphemism for horny and limp is now "enchanted," but better yet: try "due benevolence" for sex. In the same study, "Nicholas Culpeper and midwife Jane Sharp recommended that a man, who due to magic could not give his wife 'due benevolence,' should piss through her wedding ring." That can’t be good for the ring. Culpeper’s Complete Herbal [...]
"Shivering in the cold sparks a series of biochemical reactions deep within the body that alters fat cells and bolsters metabolism, much as formal exercise does, according to a fascinating series of new experiments. The findings intimate that exercise and shivering are related in ways not previously suspected." —Unfortunately, this study also finds that working out in the cold is no better than working out in a comfortable environment. Also God clearly does not want us to be healthy; every conceivable route to a fitter body is littered with land mines of pain and discomfort. Just stay in bed and order a delivery meatball sandwich. It's what He [...]
"Caffeine enhances consolidation of long-term memories in humans," says some guy who comes from Science, which is all well and good until you remember that your long-term memories are full of disappointment, sadness and outright horror, at which point you may also recall that there is a solution to erasing those memories, [...]
A good six thousand or so years ago, Northern Europe was covered in swamp-like, stagnant pools of dead plant. These bogs happened to be great places to get rid of stuff, and so our ancestors, being not much different than we are today, really, filled them with refuse and the occasional body.
We're not exactly sure why those bodies were put there. The prevailing theory is they were human sacrifices, but it's entirely possible that bogs were just convenient places to store dead people. Either way, there they stayed, buried and preserved for thousands of years, just waiting for the chance to scare the crap out of an eight-year-old girl [...]
Are you stupid about science and things? I am! I can barely do math. So after several years of study, I can tell you, fellow dingbat, what you need to know about space before seeing terrifying and wonderful space movie Gravity. It really is as good as everyone says. Here's one tip about seeing this film: when you can, keep your eyes on the horizon line. I was worried I was gonna heave a little, in part from visual orientation problems but also from anxiety. Throwing up in a movie theater is the third worst place to throw up. The second worst is the subway. We'll get to the [...]
Somehow Still-Alive Guy is not a doctor, and he does not provide medical advice. But he has seen all the doctors! And is currently still alive, and here to answer questions from you. Remember, there are no stupid medical questions—only answers that can get you killed.
Dear Somehow Still-Alive Guy,
I'm 34 and I just got health insurance for the first time since being on my parents' plan after college. I never go to the doctor. I actually don't even have a doctor. But all kinds of things could be wrong with me. I feel pretty normal but I started noticing some stuff. I think I might be depressed. [...]