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Science in Aggregate: Week 21

The views expressed are those of the author and are not necessarily those of Scientific American.


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I have dug through the Internet this week and uncovered all this geeky goodness. You can find the thousands of links from previous weeks here.


I have marked my favorite links with a. Enjoy.


The wonderful continuation of the “If Vader was a good dad” series

The Bobbit worm is beautiful, but also nightmare fuel, and probably the real animal analog for Tremors

How your eyes track faces

One of my favorite evolution diagrams. Radiant radiation

Stephen Colbert nails our “Christian nation

That one time when a cicada was used to rob a restaurant

Have you ever seen a Flamboyant Cuttlefish walk across the sea floor? It’s weird/awesome

Could the MythBusters Lift a Manhole Cover With an Indy Car?

Awesome optical illusion for a green space in Paris

How big is the biggest black hole? It should go without saying

Woahdude, you’re telling me we can see the orbitals of a hydrogen atom now?

The GIF of all the Miguel Cabrera homers is mesmerizing

The most clever national crossword was the day before the 1996 presidential election

Obviously the best way to relight a candle. How it works.

Any other geeks recognize the ship’s core in Star Trek Into Darkness? It’s the world’s most powerful laser array: The National Ignition Facility!

Engineer as we might, we are only a few extra molecules away from realizing that we merely endure nature

Don’t just be a Kirk or a Spock, embrace the information processing styles of both. Psychology!

How do we find out if slugs can survive a trip through your gullet? Kill a dog!

How do black holes die? With a burst and a whimper

Killer whales punt dolphins into the air, like assholes, then eat them

PSA: Whales are huge and they blow huge bubble rings. That is all.

NASA’s new view of the Ring nebula unleashes the Eye of Sauron

Scour: Why Most Bridges Fail

You: Nice fly face close-up! Science: We can always go closer!

It’s hard to see what planes do to the surrounding air, unless the air has mysterious red stuff in it. Vorticies FTW!

XKCD has the right view on “Sticks and Stones

One of those videos where if you play guitar, it encourages you not to quit you day job. She didn’t miss one note of Van Halen’s “Eruption”

Neil deGrasse Tyson on how Stak Trek admirably tries to get the physics right

Have you ever looked at the grooves of a vinyl record up close?

The honeycomb of bees who slurped on M&Ms

A supercell storm GIFified. Fake but fun

Largest LEGO model in history is a life-size X-Wing, obviously

Science Communication Is About Knowing Who You’re Talking To

Fantastic longread to end your day: The Girl Who Turned to Bone

Hell yeah Star Wars/Mass Effect crossover art

Slo-mo footage of a pistol shrimp’s strike? Yes please

The Obesity Apologists. Nuanced piece on the ethics of fatness

Getting To Know Your Inner Mushroom

Need a smile? Watch how crazy-good chickens are at keeping their heads still

Frozen methane bubbles in Abraham Lake, Canada are just another reason to relocate to the North

Are Unvaccinated Kids Really Causing The Whooping Cough Resurgence? As always, it’s complicated

In case you were wondering: Why orange juice and toothpaste just don’t mix

You guys, latte foam art is nearing critical-mass good

Watch this delightful video on how fast the Earth rotates. It’s science communication that’s actually funny

XKCD on how to sound insightful about tech when you’re not

If you wish to draw a woman from scratch, you must first draw her skeleton

Why Portland Is Wrong About Water Fluoridation

“I think the fact that the posts do well means that others like to nerd-out too.” I talk about how and why I write

I’m glad someone finally figured out the Easter Island heads and Stonehenge

Why Rational People Buy Into Conspiracy Theories. Skeptics can’t stress these points enough.

A parasite has never been so beautiful. Featuring the awesome work of fellow Scientific American blogger Alex Wild

Vital for arguing on the Internet: The Hierarchy of Disagreement

If the Earth was a bowling ball, its finger holes would change your view of the moon

I got smarter today, and I thank this video about dragonfly flight

How humans handle “If”

Carl Sagan“–Neil deGrasse Tyson

Completely accurate path diagrams for the Indiana Jones and Star Wars trilogies

Lovely: The Universe in a Glass, a comic featuring Richard Feynman

This model of the Enterprise is 0.0000088 meters long. Trek in Nanoness

If space had a voice, what song would it sing?

In case you didn’t know, Alexander Semenov is the greatest underwater photographer ever

Man vaporizes thousands of ants by pouring liquid aluminum down their homes. Worth it

Making apparent 3D movement out of 2D. Your brain is funny like that

It’s safe to say that I had no chance of getting into Harvard in 1899

Watching this dinosaur ninja its way between these trees somehow makes the world a better place

Where’s the Transformer noise to go along with this amazing mimic octopus?

What species of geek are you? I’m a few

“Silk frost” is just lovely

You know that dolphins can blow bubble rings, but did you know they are bubble ring *wizards*?

The sun is a giant blueberry

How many rubber bands can you put around a watermelon before it explodes? This many

The Overwhelming Odds of Climate Change. A thought experiment shows the scientific consensus

Everyone is saying how weird this centipede’s legs look, but no one seems to notice the awesome handlebar mustache

A GIF of the battle between a crazy coefficient of friction and the enormous torque put on drag racing tires

A long read to challenge you tonight: The Case Against Empathy

Kyle Hill About the Author: Kyle Hill is a freelance science writer and communicator who specializes in finding the secret science in your favorite fandom. Follow on Twitter @Sci_Phile.

The views expressed are those of the author and are not necessarily those of Scientific American.





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  1. 1. Adrian Morgan 6:42 am 05/28/2013

    I’ve decided to give this one a miss — it’s a busy week, and I’m still working my way through the pages I bookmarked after the last linkfest I read.

    I notice you’re using shortened URLs for the links, and wonder if you’ve thought through all the advantages and disadvantages of doing so.

    For me as a reader, a big disadvantage is that there’s no way for my browser to know which links point to pages I’ve already read. By turning off page styles I can see at a glance which links I’ve already visited, but because they’re shortened URLs they are all unvisited as far as my browser is concerned.

    It may be that I’ve already seen most of the pages you’ve linked to, and if I knew that to be the case it might not feel so daunting to read the few that remain. So I’d be more likely to do so.

    I’m not in any way suggesting you shouldn’t manage your blog exactly how you want to, but a decision like that between using shortened vs original URLs involves comparing the pros and cons of both options, and I want to be sure your decision is as informed as possible.

    Link to this

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