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10 unconventional stories that you might have missed this week (28.04.18)



When another week comes to an end, it's time to look at some of the remarkable stories you might have missed. Click here if you want to digest the important stuff.

Otherwise, read on for a dose of unique, curious strangeness. This week, we're learning some new things about planets, about animals, and about a few bizarre individuals.

10 The smell of Uranus

This week, a team of researchers at the Gemini Observatory in Hawaii confirmed what the rest of us had long suspected – Uranus is one of the most odorous objects in the solar system.

There we have cleared the obligatory joke out of the way. Using a powerful spectroscope, the near-infrared integral field spectrometer (NIFS), scientists were able to analyze samples of sunlight that were reflected from the planet's atmosphere. They discovered the chemical "fingerprint" of hydrogen sulphide, a compound with an unpleasant odor that can be found in rotten eggs and farting on Earth.

Until now, scientists were not sure if the planet's atmosphere was dominated by hydrogen sulfide or ammonia. as we find it on Jupiter and Saturn. The presence of the former gives us valuable clues to Uranus' education and his position.

It used to be theorized that the planet formed closer to the sun and wandered outward. However, the lack of ammonia shows that resources were scarce and Uranus (and probably Neptune) did not have the hydrogen and helium necessary to become a true gas giant like Jupiter and Saturn. This indicates that Uranus actually formed further outward and moved inward. [1]

9 Snake, Shark, and Bear

Dylan McWilliams of Grand Junction, Colorado, could be the most unhappy or happy person in the world, depending on your perspective on life. In recent years he has been attacked by a snake, a bear and a shark, surviving all three encounters with moderate injuries

It all began three years ago. McWilliams, an avid outdoorsman, was on a trek through Utah when he was bitten by a rattlesnake. The then 17-year-old believed it was a dry bite, so he did not go to the hospital. As it turned out, he was wrong. The snake poisoned, but the dose was so low that it only made Dylan ill for a few days.

Last summer, the young explorer was out again, this time with friends in Colorado. He was awakened at night by a black bear biting his skull. [2] However, he managed to hit him in the eye, and the animal ran away. McWilliams has nine staples in the back of his head and a few scars.

This brings us to the last weekend when Dylan completed the animal attack Trifecta while surfing in Hawaii. A big shark, probably a tiger shark, bit his leg. McWilliams kicked it a few times and went to the shore, where he received seven stitches for the cut in his penis.

8 Shyte Chocolate

A Canadian chocolate company has made a name for itself in the UK with the name Shyte Premium Protein Chocolate.

Master chocolatier Kevin Richards founded the company late last year. He claims that the name started out as a joke, but he thought it might work if he made it an acronym, so SHYTE stands for "Seriously. Helps you, Energize." [3] Then came the rather obvious slogan "Eat Shyte."

Attention to the product has increased sharply in recent days as the news of Shyte Chocolate spread in the United Kingdom, where the word "shyte" spread Variant of "sh-t" is.

Some described Richard's antics as harmless fun, while others called him marketing genius. Since it became viral, its product is sold out at all locations. The master chocolatier says that every few minutes he gets calls for orders, inquiries or just people who want to know if Shyte Chocolate is real.

7 The Monkey Selfie

The infamous Monkey Selfie lawsuit is finally here. An end to the San Francisco appeals court ruling that nonhumans can not own copyrights.

The whole ordeal began in 2011 when nature photographer David Slater traveled to the Tangkoko Reserve in Indonesia to shoot a few monkeys. While there, a naughty Celebes crested macaque called Naruto took his camera and accidentally took two selfies. Since then, a heated debate raged over who owned the photos.

Slater argued that while the monkey took the photos, he manipulated the situation, so he owned the copyright. The United States Copyright Office disagreed and decreed in 2014 that works created by nonhumans are not subject to copyright.

In 2015, the case took a new turn when PETER sacked Clater for using Naruto's images in his book. They wanted to set a legal precedent and designate the macaque as the copyright holder, with their organization managing the profits as a "friend" of Naruto.

A judge ruled against PETA in 2016, so the company appealed. A few days ago, the 9th US Court of Appeals upheld the original decision. Not only that, but also a statement was released that cursed PETA because it did not do justice to the monkey's "friend". [4]

6 The Journey to Bali


Most children go to their rooms after a row with their parents. This was not the case for a young Australian boy who was given the pseudonym "Drew". He went to Bali.

After a family quarrel, Drew stole his parents' credit card and persuaded his grandmother to give him his passport. Although he was only 12 years old, he was able to book a flight and a hotel room in Indonesia.

On Monday morning, he left his Sydney home with his scooter. His parents thought he was going to school, but Drew was actually on his way to the train station to drive to the airport. From there he flew to Perth, where he boarded his international flight to Bali. [5] He had researched an airline that allowed 12-year-olds to fly unaccompanied and use a self-service check-in to avoid staff whenever possible.

Drew booked a room at the All Seasons Hotel in Bali. At check-in, he claimed to travel with his older sister, who was late.

Back in Australia, Drew's family learned of his escapade after the school called to say he was absent. His mother Emma flew to Bali to fetch him.

5 The Colossal Egg

One of the largest bird eggs in history was discovered by curators of the Buffalo Museum of Science in New York. While they were browsing through their extensive collection, a researcher came across an object called a replica of an elephant bird's egg. On closer examination, however, it turned out that the egg was actually real.

The elephant bird was a giant Racine extinct from Madagascar in the 17th century. As the name suggests, the animal was huge and reached up to 500 kilograms and over 3 feet. The egg found in the museum weighed 1.4 kilograms and was 30 centimeters long. By volume, it was 150 times larger than a chicken egg.

Museum staff were enthusiastic about the find, as there are only about 40 such eggs in public institutions, and many of them are not as complete as their recent discoveries. A subsequent X-ray not only confirmed the find, but also showed that the egg had been fertilized.

The staff then tried to figure out how long it had been sitting in a locked cupboard. In their collection, they finally found the actual replica as well as records of the purchase of elephant birdhoppers by a London merchant in 1939. [6]

4 The Jellyfish Solution


The waters of the world deal with a new, enigmatic problem – they have too many jellyfish. Marine researchers are not sure of the cause of this increase in jelly populations, especially if it is a natural or artificial vibration. Their presence has influenced the tourism and fishing industries, and in Sweden they have even shut down the power plant by plugging the cooling tubes.

A group of scientists welcomed the philosophy "When life gives lemons, make lemonade" and began to look for ways to benefit from this jellyfish boom. The result was a collaboration between eight different countries on a project titled GoJelly that explores new jellyfish-based products.

Possible applications include: jellyfish collagen in anti-wrinkle creams, jelly fertilizers and food for plants and fish, and jellyfish snack chips for human consumption.

Perhaps the most promising research is conducted in Israel and involves the use of jellyfish mucus to reduce microplastics. [7] As the name implies, microplastics are very small and bypass typical sewage treatment plants and end up in the ocean. However, jelly slime adheres to them, so GoJelly wants to make water filters out of the substance that would catch even the tiniest plastic particles.

3 The Dark Planet

Researchers at Keele University in England stumbled upon one of the darkest planets ever seen. The celestial body in question, called WASP-104b, absorbs between 97 and 99 percent of the light.

WASP-104b is classified as a hot Jupiter. This means that it is a gas giant that is about the same mass as our own Jupiter planet, but is orbiting near its star, making it extremely hot. In this case, the star is a 466 light-years distant yellow dwarf in the Leo constellation. [8]

Usually, hot Jupiter are darker than other planets and absorb about 60 percent of starlight that reaches them. Last year, scientists found an exoplanet named WASP-12b that absorbed 94 percent of the light, but even this is surpassed by the latest discovery. Nevertheless, the cosmologists are not sure what gives this giant its Stygian quality.

The leading hypothesis is that this is due to its proximity to its star. WASP-104b is locked, which means that an orbit around the yellow dwarf lasts as long as a rotation around its own axis. Therefore, one side of the planet is constantly facing the star. However, being so close, it is too hot for the formation of reflective clouds. In addition, scientists speculate that WASP-104b has a thick atmosphere of atomic sodium and potassium that would absorb light even further.

2 The giant robot


Transformers are now a reality, thanks to the Japanese company Brave Robotics. They've released a video teaser that introduces their first prototype – a robot that can turn into a full-featured two-door sports car.

The bot is called J-side RIDE and is 3.7 meters high. According to Kenji Ishida, CEO of Brave Robotics, look and color remind of Anime Transformers from his childhood. The morphing process takes about a minute, after which the robot transforms into an electric car that can carry two people.

Ishida admits that at the moment, such a machine is usually just a very expensive toy that he hopes will inspire others and enhance their imagination. [9] The company does not intend to turn the prototype into a road-legal vehicle. Instead, they believe the technology is best used in the entertainment industry for amusement parks or parades.

1 The End of the World


If you read this, then the world is unlikely to end April 23, despite reports to the contrary. In a shocking turn of events, another prediction of the Last Judgment turned out to be wrong.

If the world had come to an end, it would be the fault of the annoying Nibiru, the mythical planet X, who is on a collision course with Earth. Since 1995, Nibiru has been involved in several disasters that threatened to destroy our planet, most notably the horror of the Mayan calendar in 2012. Of course, all these failed predictions have done little to dissuade true believers who still claim that Nibiru is on his way.

Strangely enough, this doomsday prediction was even denounced by its creator, the conspiracy theorist David Meade, before it turned out to be wrong. Many media claimed that Meade said the world would end on April 23, but he dismissed these reports as "false news." According to Meade, the rapture will happen sometime between May and December of that year, but he would call no specific date. [10]



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