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New analyses bolster central tenets of evolution theory

 

When scientists announced last month they had determined the exact order of all 3 billion bits of genetic code that go into making a chimpanzee, it was no surprise that the sequence was more than 96 percent identical to the human genome. Charles Darwin had deduced more than a century ago that chimps were among humans' closest cousins.But decoding chimpanzees' DNA allowed scientists to do more than just refine their estimates of how similar humans and chimps are. It let them put the very theory of evolution to some tough new tests.If Darwin was right, for example, then scientists should be able to perform a neat trick. Using a mathematical formula that emerges from evolutionary theory, they should be able to predict the number of harmful mutations in chimpanzee DNA by knowing the number of mutations in a different species' DNA and the two animals' population sizes."That's a very specific prediction," said Eric Lander, a geneticist at the Broad Institute of MIT and Harvard in Cambridge, Mass., and a leader in the chimp project.

 

Sure enough, when Lander and his colleagues tallied the harmful mutations in the chimp genome, the number fit perfectly into the range that evolutionary theory had predicted.Their analysis was just the latest of many in such disparate fields as genetics, biochemistry, geology and paleontology that in recent years have added new credence to the central tenet of evolutionary theory: That a smidgeon of cells 3.5 billion years ago could -- through mechanisms no more extraordinary than random mutation and natural selection -- give rise to the astonishing tapestry of biological diversity that today thrives on Earth.

 

Source: Washington Post

 

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New sphere of virtual reality

 

 

VirtuSphere provides a mechnical basis for truly immersive virtual reality environments, permitting the user to move about in virtual space by simply walking. The device consists of a large hollow sphere which is mounted on a specially designed platform that allows the sphere to rotate freely as the user walks in any direction. (Note that the open hatch in the picture above is closed during use.) The user wears a head-mounted display, which provides the virtual environment. Sensors under the sphere provide subject speed and direction to the computer running the simulation. Users can even ineract with objects in virtual space using a special manipulator.

 

The ability to move physically and thereby control the simulation is one of the enabling technologies behind such science fictional devices as the Star Trek holodeck. The holodeck is a virtual environment that provides infinitely varied participatory, interactive entertainment in a very small space. On Federation starships, stressed crewmembers need to have some sort of outlet for exercise and entertainment.

 

 

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Source: Livescience.com

 

 

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'Most Haunted' to probe Dalby spook legend

 

 

Paranormal experts from Living TV's Most Haunted programme are to reopen the case of a Manx haunting which made headlines worldwide. Historian Richard Felix is to travel to the Island next month to investigate the infamous Dalby Spook – following in the footsteps of his hero, legendary psychical researcher Harry Price.He said: 'I've been a follower of Harry Price for many years and I can't wait to get started. The Isle of Man has a plethora of ghostly stuff, it's absolutely incredible – but the Dalby Spook is right up there with the best.'Richard and fellow Living TV star, parapsychologist Ciaran O'Keefe, visited the Island last month to give a talk to the newly formed Manx Paranormal Society.And it was during their visit that they first heard about the strange tale of Dalby's talking mongoose, detailed in Harry Price's book The Hunting of Cashen Gap.The case of the Dalby Spook surfaced in 1931 when a family living in a cottage at Doarlish Cashen heard strange sounds coming from behind panelling.Thirteen-year-old Voirrey Irving claimed a creature with yellow fur, bushy tail and flat snout, had introduced himself as 'Gef, an extra clever mongoose from Delhi'.Gef could sing as well as talk and, with Voirrey's tuition, his vocabulary grew rapidly. He roamed the area to relate gossip back to the Irvings.

 

Legendary paranormal investigator Harry Price travelled to the Island to probe the strange affair – but he failed to come to any conclusion as to the truth or otherwise of the sightings.Reports of Gef ended when the Irvings left Doarish Cashen in 1935. The next owner, a Mr Graham, said he snared and killed a strange-looking animal.Richard will begin his research when he travels to the Island on October 3 and 4 to film a DVD on the ghosts of the Isle of Man.He said: 'There is a great possibility of basing a new Most Haunted programme on the Dalby Spook.

 

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Source: Isle of Man Today

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On the trail of the werewolf

 

 

Werewolves. People who shapeshift into howling, bloodthirsty wolves by the light of the full moon. As Lord Byron noted, this affliction is also known as lycanthropy. It’s a superstition that dates back centuries and has been popularized by books of fiction and dozens of films. Virtually every culture on the planet has lore and traditions of were-creatures. But is there any truth to the werewolf legend? In medical terms, lycanthropy is applied to people who suffer from the delusion that they transform into wolves. And physically there is a genetic condition called hypertrichosis in which a person, male or female, is mostly or even entirely covered in thick dark hair.

 

All 32 members of the Aceves family in Mexico have this rare condition, for example. Some of them have become skilled acrobats and travel with a circus. Fajardo Aceves Jesus Manuel even bills himself as “Wolfman.” The family is currently under study by The Center of Biomedical Research in Guadalajara, Mexico.

 

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Source: about.com

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Strange egg-shaped skulls mystify scientists

 

 

Russian media outlets have recently covered a story about yet another mystery of the ancient period of human civilization, when archaeologists discovered plates with drawings in South America. The plates or the so-called Iki stones are about 70 million years old. The drawings show people with disproportionately large heads. There are skulls of the same shape in the local museums. But archeologists find the elongated skulls in Russia too, in the North Caucasus. The Pyatigorsk museum of regional studies has them on display. Do those skulls have anything in common? And who started "the fashion?""The Pyatigorsk skull was found at the excavation site of the Khasaot burial ground in the vicinity of Kislovodsk," says Doctor of Historical Sciences Vladimir Kuznetsov, the author of numerous studies of history of the North Caucasus. "The skull is part of culture of the ancient Alani. Approximately, it dates back to the 3rd - 5th centuries A.D.

 

These strange skulls appeared at the same time when the Sarmatian and Alani hordes came around. Some of the nomads moved for the North Caucasus in 15th century.""Researchers have repeatedly proved that the skulls had been deformed on purpose," says Mr. Kuznetsov. "Ropes or special blocks were tied tightly round the heads of infants, over the temples. The custom went out of fashion by 17th century. The reason behind the deformation phenomenon is still unknown. It is hard to say whether the methods worked effectively or not since nobody ever conducted scientific experiments regarding the binding of the infants' heads. But "aliens" are not likely to be involved in this case," says the researcher.

 

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Source: Pravda.ru (english Version)

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Did a blood clot kill Jesus ?

 

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Jesus may have died from a blood clot that reached his lungs, an Israeli physician said Wednesday, challenging the popular conception that he died of asphyxiation and blood loss during his crucifixion. Dr. Benjamin Brenner, a researcher at the Rambam Medical Center in the Israeli port city of Haifa, said he was publicizing his theory to raise awareness about pulmonary embolism, a potentially fatal disorder often associated with long-distance air travel.However, the author of an earlier in-depth medical report into the cause of Jesus’ death dismissed the theory, and Bible scholars said that while establishing the physical cause of Jesus’ death was interesting, it ignored the spiritual dimension.“It is known that the common cause of death in the setting of multiple trauma, immobilization and dehydration is pulmonary embolism,” Brenner wrote in the Journal of Thrombosis and Haemostasis. “This fits well with Jesus’ condition and actually was in all likelihood the major cause of death of crucified victims.”A pulmonary embolism is caused when a blood clot travels to the lungs, usually from the leg, causing an acute shortness of breath and chest pains. It is frequently fatal.

 

Based on scripture and scientific papersBrenner based his understanding of Jesus’ condition at the time of his death on a 1986 paper published in the Journal of the American Medical Association, which referred to the New Testament and contemporary religious sources.That paper found that before his crucifixion, Jesus went 12 hours without food or water, was under emotional stress, was beaten and forced to walk to the crucifixion site carrying the heavy cross beam of the cross on which he was crucified. He also was scourged before being nailed to the cross, leading to some blood loss.

 

 

Source: MSNBC

wooooooooooooow....

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Why do we believe in God ?

 

 

Faith in a higher being is as old as humanity itself. But what sparked the Divine Idea? Did our earliest ancestors gain some evolutionary advantage through their shared religious feelings? In these extracts from his latest book, Robert Winston ponders the biggest question of them all. The Dolley Pond Church of God With Signs Following was founded in Tennessee in 1909 by one George Went Hensley. This former bootlegger took to the pulpit in a rural Pentecostalist community in Grasshopper Valley. One Sabbath, while he was preaching a fiery sermon, some of the congregation dumped a large box of rattlesnakes into the pulpit (history does not record whether they were angry or just bored). Without missing a beat, in mid-sentence, Hensley bent down, picked up a 3ft-long specimen of this most venomous of snakes, and held it wriggling high above his head.

 

Unharmed, he exhorted his congregation to follow suit, quoting the words of Christ: "And these signs will follow those who believe ... in my Name ... they will take up serpents."News of Hensley's sermon spread through Grasshopper Valley; others joined him in handling snakes, and the practice caught on. There have since been around 120 deaths from snakebite in these churches, but most of the congregants tend to refuse medical help if they are bitten, preferring to believe that divine intervention will be more efficacious. Sadly, Hensley himself perished from a snakebite in 1955, and shortly afterwards the US government wisely acted to prevent the practice - although it is still legal in parts of the States.

 

 

 

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Source: The Guardian

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Archimedes Death Ray device put to the test

 

 

Massachuessets Institute of Technology: Ancient Greek and Roman historians recorded that during the siege of Syracuse in 212 BC, Archimedes (a notably smart person) constructed a burning glass to set the Roman warships, anchored within bow and arrow range, afire. The story has been much debated and oft dismissed as myth. TV's MythBusters were not able to replicate the feat and “busted” the myth.Intrigued by the idea and an intuitive belief that it could work, MIT's 2.009ers decided to apply the early product development ‘sketch or soft modeling’ process to the problem. Our goal was not to make a decision on the myth—we just wanted to assess if it was at least possible, and have some fun in the process. Jumping ahead, you can see the result… but let’s start at the beginning of the process.

 

(btw, the boat is made of 1" thick red oak and this is a photoshop-free zone!)When the 2.009 class was given a 5 minute challenge to assess technical feasibility, about 95% (of 80 students) deemed the death ray infeasible. In a democracy this would probably doom the idea. However, since ‘the bosses’ thought it might work, further exploration and sketch model tests to learn more were merited.

 

 

| Source: Massachuessets Institute of Technology

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Why do we believe in God ?

 

 

Faith in a higher being is as old as humanity itself. But what sparked the Divine Idea? Did our earliest ancestors gain some evolutionary advantage through their shared religious feelings? In these extracts from his latest book, Robert Winston ponders the biggest question of them all. The Dolley Pond Church of God With Signs Following was founded in Tennessee in 1909 by one George Went Hensley. This former bootlegger took to the pulpit in a rural Pentecostalist community in Grasshopper Valley. One Sabbath, while he was preaching a fiery sermon, some of the congregation dumped a large box of rattlesnakes into the pulpit (history does not record whether they were angry or just bored). Without missing a beat, in mid-sentence, Hensley bent down, picked up a 3ft-long specimen of this most venomous of snakes, and held it wriggling high above his head.

 

Unharmed, he exhorted his congregation to follow suit, quoting the words of Christ: "And these signs will follow those who believe ... in my Name ... they will take up serpents."News of Hensley's sermon spread through Grasshopper Valley; others joined him in handling snakes, and the practice caught on. There have since been around 120 deaths from snakebite in these churches, but most of the congregants tend to refuse medical help if they are bitten, preferring to believe that divine intervention will be more efficacious. Sadly, Hensley himself perished from a snakebite in 1955, and shortly afterwards the US government wisely acted to prevent the practice - although it is still legal in parts of the States.

 

 

 

christ.jpg

 

 

Source: The Guardian

very interesting :friends:

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666: What's in a number?

 

 

Are you afraid of the number 666? If you were issued an automobile license plate or a telephone number that included a string of three sixes would you ask for a different number? Do you think the number 666 is inherently evil? Do you believe any number can in and of itself be evil?The issue of FATE magazine that you are holding in your hands right at this moment is issue number 666. The 666th word in this article is "dead." Does this make you just a little bit nervous?If it does, you are not alone. There is a name for your condition - "Hexakosioihexekontahexaphobia" - the fear of the number 666.Everyone has at least one or two superstitions that we feel somehow comfortably obliged to observe. My father was a geologist and a high-degree Freemason. He was for the most part a very logical and scientific man. Still, he was oddly superstitious about little things like spilling salt and walking under ladders.For a lot of people the number 666 is particularly terrifying. After all, it's the devil's number, isn't it? For the better part of 2,000 years many in the Western world have certainly thought so.

 

What is it about these three digits that makes so many of us uncomfortable?The dreaded number makes its first and only appearance in the last book of the New Testament, the Revelation of Saint John the Divine (often mistakenly called Revelations) - a book that for centuries has been interpreted by theologians as a document prophesying the terrible events that will take place at the end of the world.Early Church fathers decided that John, the author of the Revelation, was the same John who wrote the Gospel According to John (the last of the Four Gospels). Modern experts from a wide range of religious and non-religious persuasions agree this is probably not the case. The style of the Greek writing and other obvious differences suggest the two books were penned by different individuals.

 

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Source: FATE Magazine

 

Human living vampires

 

Forensic nurses, regardless of their practice area, will at times come in contact with the same types of deviant behavior. Some of these behaviors may be considered rare or even non-existent. It is to our benefit that we share our investigative experiences with these cases. Vampirism is one such behavior. In the modern age, vampires have become media stars. The word "vampire" became a household name in 1897 after the publication of "Dracula."1 More recently, the vampire novels by Anne Rice have become best sellers.2 Television shows such as "Buffy: The Vampire Slayer" and movies with vampire themes are increasingly popular. However the popularity of these characters can lead some people, teenagers in particular, down a dangerous road. A 17-year-old white male was found unresponsive in his bedroom by his parents. He was on his knees, on the floor, with his head resting on the bed. A call was placed to 9-1-1 and emergency medical services (EMS) transported him to a local hospital.

 

He was pronounced dead in the emergency room (ER). The deceased was noted to have a history of ADD and had been prescribed Prozac and Adderral. He was a very popular teenager who was active in many high school activities. He had recently lost Internet privileges and the Internet name he used was "Vampireboy." During the scene investigation a black and white composition book was found next to his bed. In this 40-page journal, which was written in long hand, the deceased described himself as a "Vampiresis." In great detail, he described how he became a Vampiresis and instructs others to do the same. A sample bottle of Zoloft was found in his bathroom. At autopsy it was noted that the canine teeth appeared to have been filed. Sixteen ounces of blood was found in the stomach and 4 ounces of mucoid bloody fluid was found in the duodenum. There were no signs of ulceration or other cause for bleeding.

 

Source: Forensic Nurse Magazine

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Exhibit out to show truth about UFOs

 

It's all there in black and white -- at least for those who believe in such things. In the summer of 1947, a UFO allegedly crashed near Roswell.For those who believe in UFOs, it was the undeniable proof of the existence of Unidentified Flying Objects, which was subsequently covered up by the government. And for those who don't believe, it was all an elaborate misunderstanding. El Pasoans can judge for themselves by visiting the Roswell Exhibit, on display through Oct. 31 at the Art Junction, 500 W. Paisano."A lot of people ask me 'Do you believe?' and I tell them to look at the faces of the people involved and read their testimony and to make up their own minds," said Albert Acosta of the El Paso Natural History Museum who worked with the UFO museum in Roswell to create the traveling exhibit.

 

The exhibit features large canvas photographs, sculptures and replica artifacts.The exhibit shows different items that document when the crash was called a UFO crash by the government to subsequent claims by the government that it was not a UFO but debris from a weather balloon.Also included in the exhibit are a cast of the alien prop used in the Showtime movie "Roswell," as well as toys inspired by the UFO phenomenon."I think of it as American mythology," said Marty Martin, who is co-director of the El Paso Natural History Museum with Acosta. "It is a popular subject, like paleontology."The exhibit has drawn inquiries elsewhere in the country after record-breaking attendance at the Southwest Florida Museum of History in Fort Myers, Fla., where it was previously displayed.

 

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Source: El Paso Times

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Time travel for beginners

 

 

 

Since the publication of H.G Wells’ ‘The Time Machine’ in 1895, the prospect of time travel has fired the imagination of writers, provided controversy amongst the scientific community and encouraged philosophers, scientists, metaphysicians and dreamers to engage in passionate debate. In recent years, we’ve seen people claiming to be visitors from the future, others claiming that we have evidence that time travel has happened and inevitably we now have time travel conventions where ideas about time travel can be discussed and developed.It seems as though a myriad of people have an interest in the possibility of travelling through time. If the past exists, does the future already exist, and if it does, is our future already predetermined?So what’s the story? Is time travel possible or should such romantic notions be confined to the movies? In November 2000, a man named John Titor suddenly appeared on an internet newsgroup claiming to be a soldier from 2036. Over a period of around sixteen months, he amassed quite a following with his accounts of how the world and, America in particular, would be changing during the next several years. Some of his reports included information about a global nuclear war in 2015, civil war in America that starts in 2004/5 and reaches its worst point in 2008, the exhaustion of oil reserves and numerous wars and other man made and natural disasters.It remains to be seen if the mysterious John Titor was for real or whether he was an educated hoaxer looking to amuse himself.

 

Opinion is divided, certainly when asked specific questions, Titor was able to demonstrate a sound knowledge of the subject area. When describing his method of time travel, he described it as a government issue “Time Distortion Gravity Displacement Unit” which was manufactured by General Electric. He went on to explain that it used two spinning dual-positive micro-singularities or mini black holes which would distort gravity around them; by distorting gravity the micro-singularities also distort time, enabling the traveller to travel through time. He went on to post instruction manuals and photographs of his equipment.

 

Source: Thothweb

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Sensations rise around Dwarf of Kerman (Iran)

 

 

The 25-centimeter dwarf near Shahdad city of Kerman province and the rumors of the existence of an ancient dwarf city in Kerman province has brought a lot of questions to archaeologists and caused great sensations among the public. Kerman’s Police Department and the provincial office of Iran’s Cultural Heritage and Tourism Organization (ICHTO) have asked for the clarification of the situation of the discovered mummified corpse in Shahdad to settle the issue as soon as possible.Two months ago, illegal excavations in the historical fortress of Gudiz in Kerman province near Shahdad city, which dates back to the Sassanid era, led to the discovery of a 25-centimeter corpse known as the “mummified dwarf” facing archaeologists with a mystery since then. Forensic studies have not been able to determine the sexuality and the exact age of the corpse at the time of its death so far.

 

“Regarding the rumors and the sensitivity of the issue of the existence of an ancient dwarf city in Kerman province, the Cultural Heritage and Tourism Organization of Kerman has asked for more anthropological studies to end the rumors,” says Hossein Rashidzadeh, an official with the Cultural Heritage and Tourism Organization of Kerman. Regarding the fact that no mummies have been found in Iran from any historical periods, ICHTO archaeologists have denied the corpse being a mummified one. On the other hand, the Organization anthropologists believe that that the corpse may have been mummified under natural processes. Police Department of Kerman province has arrested two smugglers with regard to this corpse; the smugglers wanted to sell the mummy for about more than 3 million U.S. dollars in Germany.

 

dwarf.jpg

 

Source: CHN

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The curse of Tutankhamun

 

 

“I heard his call and I will follow him” – after speaking this words, Lord Carnarvon. perished in the city of Aswan at 1:50 a.m., on the 5th of April 1923. At the same time, his dog, Susie was also dying at Highclere Castle, the family estate in England.The city of Cairo fell into complete darkness after an energy shortage that lasted for five minutes, nobody at the power station knew how to explain the return of electricity after the short breakdown as no one had time to fix the fault; its cause was also unknown, and so it remains until today…Coincidence?! For some perhaps, but for many others this was the beginning of several unfortunate events known as “The curse of the Pharaoh”. When Marie Corelli wrote in one of her romances “the most horrible punishment will fall upon the trespassers of a sealed tomb” she probably never thought that this passage of her book would fill many newspapers so soon after its publication.

 

The world was only a few days away from getting to know about one of the biggest archaeological discoveries of all times. Two days before entering the tomb of Tutankhamun, Egyptologist Howard Carter had received a painful scorpion bite to one of his hands. Unbeknown to him, the infection from the bite would trouble him considerably while opening the tomb.… During the same night, an even stranger event took place; a snake entered the tent and ate Carter’s canary. As dawn broke on the morning that the tomb was to be opened, a majestic hawk was seen flying around the area, disappearing into the west. This sighting was considered a bad omen, a warning that left the fellahs (the Egyptian workers) fearful and whispering amongst themselves that very soon the foreign explorers would find “gold and death”.

 

tut.jpg

 

Source: ThothWeb

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Why people believe in alien abductions

 

Would you like to help with a study of a strange sleep phenomenon that may shed light on memory, the contents of our dreams and even alien abduction?The study has been triggered in part by the emergence in recent decades of "a most bizarre phenomenon", according to Prof Chris French, head of the Anomolistic Psychology Research Unit at Goldsmiths College in London. People around the world have reported being taken from their beds or from their cars by aliens. "These beings were often around four feet high, with spindly arms and legs and oversized heads," he said. "The most striking thing about them was their large black eyes through which they appeared to communicate telepathically."The abductees, or 'experiencers' as they prefer to be known, would describe how they had found themselves on board an alien spaceship where they were subjected to (often painful) medical examination, during which sperm or ova might be extracted."To investigate, Prof French compared 19 alleged "abductees" and 19 age- and gender-matched volunteers. Last week, he told a meeting in the Science Museum's Dana Centre that these "experiencers" scored more highly in a number of areas, including belief in the paranormal and a tendency to hallucinate.

 

Many had a history of sleep paralysis, a penumbra of consciousness when sufferers sense the presence of a nearby threat, either when falling asleep or awakening."These findings show that it is possible to carry out good science in this controversial area, and start to discover what lies behind these unusual reports," said Prof Richard Wiseman, University of Hertfordshire. ''Of course," he added, "it is always possible that Prof French has been abducted by aliens, and unknowingly had these ideas put into his head to prevent the real truth emerging.''

 

 

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Source: The Telegraph

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Bacteria methane bolsters Mars life theories

 

 

 

A Keck School scientist and his collaborators are the first to find methane-producing bacteria in arid desert soils, providing a springboard for future experiments on the distant planet. Evidence of methane-producing organisms can be found in inhospitable soil environments much like those found on the surface of Mars, according to experiments undertaken by scientists and students from the Keck School of Medicine of USC and the University of Arkansas and published online in the journal Icarus. The results, they said, provide ample impetus for similar “biodetection experiments” to be considered for future missions to Mars. “Methane-producing organisms are the ones most likely to be found on Mars,” noted Joseph Miller, associate professor of cell and neurobiology in the Keck School and one of the study’s lead researchers. “And, in fact, methane was detected on Mars last year.” Methane is considered to be a biological signature for certain living organisms that metabolize organic matter under conditions of low or no oxygen. Terrestrial methanogens (methane-producers) are typically found in environments largely protected from atmospheric oxygen, such as peat bogs, oceanic methane ices and anoxic levels of the ocean. But they previously had not been detected in an arid desert environment.

 

To see if methane could be found in Mars-like soil, the investigators collected soil and vapor samples from the arid environment of the Mars Desert Research Station in Utah and then compared them with vapor samples taken from the Idaho High Desert and soil samples from Death Valley, the Arctic and the Atacama desert in Chile. Three of five vapor samples from the Utah site showed the presence of methane; there was no methane found in any of the vapor samples from Idaho. Similarly, while five of 40 soil samples from Utah produced methane after the addition of growth medium to the samples – indicating that the methane was being given off by a biological organism, most likely a bacterium – none of the other soil samples showed signs of methane production.

Source: USC.edu

 

mars3.jpg

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Giant apes co-existed with early humans

 

gigantic ape standing 10 feet tall and weighing up to 1,200 pounds lived alongside humans for over a million years, according to a new study. Fortunately for the early humans, the huge primate's diet consisted mainly of bamboo.Scientists have known about Gigantopithecus blackii since the accidental discovery of some of its teeth on sale in a Hong Kong pharmacy about 80 years ago. While the idea of a giant ape piqued the interest of scientists – and bigfoot hunters – around the world, it was unclear how long ago this beast went extinct.Now Jack Rink, a geochronologist at McMaster University in Ontario, has used a high-precision absolute-dating method to determine that this ape – the largest primate ever – roamed Southeast Asia for nearly a million years before the species died out 100,000 years ago during the Pleistocene period. By this time, humans had existed for a million years."A missing piece of the puzzle has always focused on pin-pointing when Gigantopithecus existed," Rink said.

 

"This is a primate that co-existed with humans at a time when humans were undergoing a major evolutionary change. Guangxhi province in southern China, where some of the Gigantopithecus fossils were found, is the same region where some believe the modern human race originated."Since the original discovery, scientists have been able to piece together a description of Gigantopithecus using just a handful of teeth and a set of jawbones. It may not be much, but the unusually large size of these teeth indicates they belonged to one big ape.

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Noah's Ark rests in Iran?

 

Army officer stationed in Irain in 1943 thinks he's found the landing place of Noah's Ark in mountainous region

 

 

Despite popular speculation that Noah's Ark rests on Turkey's Mount Ararat, there are a few believers seeking elsewhere. Specifically, Iran.

 

Evangelical explorer, author and lecturer Bob Cornuke has followed the Exodus route of Moses, dived the Red Sea in search of Pharaoh's chariots, searched for the lost Ark of the Covenant in Israel and Ethiopia, sought in Malta's ocean beds the four anchors from the shipwreck of St. Paul, and traveled through Eastern Turkey with Apollo 15 astronaut James Irwin.

 

To the above, his research and findings regarding Mt. Sinai have been chronicled by Discovery, the History Channel, and National Geographic Television.

 

This past summer Cornuke, a former crime scene investigator turned relic hunter, culminated more than 20-years of painstaking research and reconnaissance by climbing Iran’s Mt. Soleiman in search of Noah’s Ark.

 

Decades of previous expeditions by noted historians, scientists, and explorers have centered the focus of the search on Mt. Ararat in Turkey which, to-date, has been widely-believed, but never proven, to be the landing site of the Ark. But Cornuke has always been focused on the mountainous regions of Iran as the likely landing place for he Ark; retracing the steps and accounts of Ed Davis, an army officer stationed in Iran in 1943.

 

Davis, who passed a lie detector test, claims to have been taken to the Ark's resting place, and was able to offer both a detailed verbal account, and drawings of what he had seen. Relying on instincts honed from years in law enforcement, and a Biblical interpretation that points toward the Ark's ultimate destinations being further east than traditionally thought, as well as the disappointing lack of progress in finding any evidence of boats that other alleged eyewitnesses claimed to see on Mount Ararat - which Cornuke has climbed several times - led him to believe that Davis' story was worth investigating.

 

Braving treacherous climbing conditions, and a hostile political environment, Cornuke says he discovered evidence of an altar site, and a structure that geological experts theorize could have been “hand-hewed.”

 

He returned from Mt. Soleiman with numerous samples, photos, and video footage, and has chronicled the journey in a new book, Ark Fever (Tyndale House Publishers).

 

Testing of rock and shell samples were conducted by BETA Analytic Inc., the largest professional radiocarbon dating laboratory in the world, which routinely services world governments and major academic and historical institutions such as the Smithsonian Institute. Results of this carbon dating, which is still on-going, indicate the presence of abundant organic material consistent with coming from a quiescent deep-water environment – in layman’s terms, possibly from a world once immersed in water.

 

Evidence of petrified wood was also brought back, and a world-wide team of experts is studying all materials.

 

As for Cornuke, he awaits a break in the harsh Iranian winter so that he and a team can return to Mt. Soleiman for further investigation, where he is optimistic that a veil will be lifted on a centuries-long quest for the greatest Bible legend ever chronicled.

 

Cornuke believes the discovery of the ark would rock the archaeological world, and cause many skeptics to take a renewed look at the historical authenticity of the bible.

 

As Dr. Mellville Bell Grovesnor, the late editor of National Geographic once said, “If the ark of Noah is discovered, it will be the greatest archaeological find in human history, the greatest event since the resurrection of Christ, and it would alter the currents of scientific thought.”

 

 

Satanic curses

 

In September this year, a woman in Guyana was convicted of bludgeoning a friend to death. Her friend, she explained, was possessed, and she was trying to beat the Devil out. In Romania, meanwhile, a priest and four nuns from the Romanian Orthodox Church are on trial, accused of murdering a 23-year-old novice. In his defence, the priest who led the exorcism has claimed his approach was better than the medical treatment she had been receiving for her schizophrenia. It's an older story, though, that inspired a film out this month, The Exorcism of Emily Rose. It concerns the death of Anneliese Michel, a Bavarian woman who died in 1976, aged 23, also after an exorcism. The two priests involved were charged with negligent homicide. So were the woman's parents. Born in 1952, Michel was raised in a strict Catholic family. While other teenagers were experimenting with sex and rebelling against authority, she tried to atone for the sins of wayward priests by sleeping on a bare floor in the middle of winter.

 

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In 1969, according to court findings, Michel experienced her first epileptic fit; by 1973 she was suffering from depression and considering suicide. As her feelings of torment grew stronger, she reported seeing faces of demons on the people and things around her (a phenomenon eerily portrayed in the film) and hearing voices informing her that she was damned.

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DNA may reveal who can claim Columbus

 

He gave new meaning to the phrase "world-class celebrity," but like Garbo, Christopher Columbus had little interest in talking about himself and dismissed queries about his origins with a rhetorical shrug: " Vine de nada" -- "I came from nothing." It was never enough. For centuries, scholars have wondered about this enigmatic mariner whose compulsion to travel east by traveling west altered the course of Western civilization and effectively ended the Middle Ages.He may have been born in Genoa, but he wrote in indifferent Latin or in good Spanish -- never in Italian. He had French connections, married a Portuguese woman, may have been Jewish, may have lived in Catalonia and died May 20, 500 years ago this week, in the Spanish city of Valladolid.To commemorate this event, researchers led by Spanish forensic pathologist José Antonio Lorente Acosta are comparing the DNA of Columbus's illegitimate son, Fernando, with DNA from hundreds of possible Columbus descendants in at least three countries.

 

The goal is to determine once and for all whether Columbus, as traditionalists hold, was the son of Genoese wool weaver Domenico Colombo, or was instead a Spaniard named Colon; or a Catalan Colom, from Barcelona; or a French Coulom or Colomb; or perhaps Corsican or Mallorcan."We'll get something, but it will be complicated," Lorente said in a telephone interview from his University of Granada office. "The trick is to differentiate between the Columbuses from different places -- and there's no guarantee."Lorente's original idea was to examine purported Columbus remains in Seville, Spain, and at the Faro a Colon monument in the Dominican Republic to find out where Columbus was truly buried.

 

Source: Washington Post

 

columbus.jpg

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Very Interesting Siamak Jan! Keep it up! :clap2: :k

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Very Interesting Siamak Jan! Keep it up! :clap2: :k

 

I would like but nobody read it :c ...

 

 

Tooth gives up oldest human DNA

 

 

Scientists have recovered DNA from a Neanderthal that lived 100,000 years ago - the oldest human-type DNA so far. It was extracted from the tooth of a Neanderthal child found in the Scladina cave in the Meuse Basin, Belgium. The study, reported in Current Biology, suggests our distant cousins were more genetically diverse than once thought. Their diversity had declined, perhaps because of climate change or disease, by the time early humans arrived in Europe about 35,000 years ago. French and Belgian researchers isolated the genetic material from mitochondria. These are "power pack" structures in cells which contain their own DNA. The scientists decoded the sequence of 123 DNA "letters" (base-pairs, or bp) and compared it with other known Neanderthal DNA sequences from specimens dated between 29,000 and 42,000 years old.

 

"The Scladina sequence has revealed that the genetic diversity of Neanderthals has been underestimated," a team led by Dr Catherine Hanni of Ecole Normale Superieur in Lyon, France, wrote in the journal Current Biology. "Thus, more Neanderthal sequences than the six presently available and longer than 100 bp are needed to fully understand the extent of the past diversity of Neanderthals."

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How to turn yourself into a genius

 

What if I were to tell you that just one year from now your IQ could be double what it is today? And what if I told you that all you needed to do was perform a simple daily exercise that would make it happen? In fact, there is strong evidence that by doing this one simple exercise, you can dramatically increase your IQ -- and even make yourself a genius!So what is this simple, easy and fantastic “genius exercise” that will supercharge your brain? This: Keep a daily journal or dairy. Every day, or several times a day, write down all your thoughts on paper. Do it faithfully for one complete year, and you will rapidly grow more intelligent -- guaranteed.

 

Consider:

 

• Researcher Catherine Cox studied the habits of 300 geniuses — luminaries such as Isaac Newton, Einstein, Thomas Jefferson — and discovered that all of them were “compulsive” journal or diary keepers.

• A study determined that only 1 percent of the world’s population habitually engaged in daily journal writing. The study also found that that same 1 percent were almost always super high achievers, and that they almost always lived longer than the average for their time, place and era.

• Thomas Edison wrote an incredible 3 million pages of notes, letters and personal thoughts in hundreds of personal journals throughout his life.

• The brilliant cosmologist Steven Hawking contracted Lou Gehrig’s disease more than 30 years ago and was give just two years to live. Hawking is a shriveled up lump of a human being confined to an electronic wheelchair. He cannot speak, write, or even move more than just a trifle. But 32 years after contracting his disease, Hawking is considered among the world’s greatest thinkers. He remarried a few years ago after a divorce, and shows no signs of slowing down with his contributions to cosmology and quantum relativity theory. Although unable to physically keep a journal, Hawking has used computers and other mechanical aides to constantly record not only new ideas and scientific theories, but his own inner reflections.

• When he was a young man, Albert Einstein took a young woman sailing for a date. The date didn’t go very well. The young woman was frustrated because Einstein hardly said a word to her -- but instead spent the whole day scribbling in a small journal he carried with him.

 

Now here’s some more good news: to get all of the IQ building effects of daily journaling, you don’t even have to write down anything that is even coherent!This fact is demonstrated in the the journal of one of the great minds of the 19th Century, English inventor Thomas Faraday, a man much admired by Einstein himself. Faraday filled thousands of notebooks with seeming utter nonsense. Many have studied the journals of Faraday hoping to discover the key to his brilliant mind. All have been frustrated. In Win Winger and Richard Poe’s book, The Einstein Factor, one researcher wrote:“(Faraday's) Diaries have the irritating form of ideas jotted down, repeated and forgotten … a morass or articulated and unarticulated principles, concepts, observations and physical facts.”In fact, the best method to build your IQ seems to be carrying your journal with you throughout the day and writing down any random thoughts as they come into your head.Now an added bonus: Keeping a daily “random thoughts” journal will not only make you smarter, but may also increase your life span! The evidence for this come from a fascinating study of a group of unusual nuns in Mankato, Minnesota.

 

The nuns are unique in that just about all of them live well past the average age of death for women in Minnesota. Most of them live well into their 90s, and some top the 100-year mark. Few or none of them have ever suffered from senile dementia or Alzheimer's Disease.What do the sisters all have in common? That’s right -- they are all obsessive journal keepers. Keeping a journal is a requirement of their particular order. And yes, a study of the nuns’ IQs showed that they were all well above average. Of course, there were other variables in the nuns’ clean and serene lifestyle that most likely contributed to their intelligence and long life -- but journal keeping is the one key element they all had in common.So there you have it. Buy a notebook, get a pen and carry them wherever you go. Jot down your random thoughts, reflect upon what you write, and soon, you’ll be enjoying your shiny new super-powered IQ!

 

"I've found God" says genome scientist

 

The scientist who led the team that cracked the human genome is to publish a book explaining why he now believes in the existence of God and is convinced that miracles are real. Francis Collins, the director of the US National Human Genome Research Institute, claims there is a rational basis for a creator and that scientific discoveries bring man “closer to God”. His book, The Language of God, to be published in September, will reopen the age-old debate about the relationship between science and faith. “One of the great tragedies of our time is this impression that has been created that science and religion have to be at war,” said Collins, 56. “I don’t see that as necessary at all and I think it is deeply disappointing that the shrill voices that occupy the extremes of this spectrum have dominated the stage for the past 20 years.” For Collins, unravelling the human genome did not create a conflict in his mind. Instead, it allowed him to “glimpse at the workings of God”. “When you make a breakthrough it is a moment of scientific exhilaration because you have been on this search and seem to have found it,” he said.

 

“But it is also a moment where I at least feel closeness to the creator in the sense of having now perceived something that no human knew before but God knew all along. “When you have for the first time in front of you this 3.1 billion-letter instruction book that conveys all kinds of information and all kinds of mystery about humankind, you can’t survey that going through page after page without a sense of awe. I can’t help but look at those pages and have a vague sense that this is giving me a glimpse of God’s mind.” Collins joins a line of scientists whose research deepened their belief in God. Isaac Newton, whose discovery of the laws of gravity reshaped our understanding of the universe, said: “This most beautiful system could only proceed from the dominion of an intelligent and powerful being.”

 

Source: Times Online

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Thanks Siamak... I'm learning new things! Thanks to you! :DD

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U R Welcome Kourosh jan :).

 

- - -

 

The birth of the CIA and UFOs

 

There's been a lot of speculation in regards to the irony of the "birth of the CIA" (formerly, The Central Intelligence Group [CIG]) in September of 1947, coinciding with all the "flying saucer (UFO) activity" beginning (publicly speaking) in June of that year; starting with Kenneth Arnold's sighting near Mt Rainier, to the "crashed discs" in the area of Roswell, New Mexico. Some have claimed, that the sole purpose in creating the CIA was to investigate the "flying saucer" (UFO) phenomenon. That, of course is not the case. “CIG” and then later the “CIA,” were born primarily out of the realization of the importance of a "post war" intelligence gathering agency, similar to it's "war time" predecessor, the "OSS," and President Truman's frustration with being "out of the intelligence loop," as "Vice-President." In addition to the difficulty it had been for him to obtain information from the various government departments, each of which seemed "walled off" from the others.At that time, by many accounts, he had been surprised to discover how much information relating to intelligence and national security matters had been "withheld" from him.

 

The most dramatic evidence of how ill-informed he was came on his 12th day in office when "Secretary of War Henry Stimson" briefed him for the first time on the “Manhattan Project” (atomic bomb), about which Truman had heard only hints while serving as Vice-President and on key Senate committees. (David McCullough, Truman, Simon and Shuster, New York, 1992, pgs. 376-378.)It is interesting to note however, that both CIG and the OSS did in fact investigate UFOs individually. The OSS investigated what US pilots had nicknamed "Foo Fighters" (UFOs trailing our aircraft during World War II), fearing that these objects could be a “new secret weapon” from either Germany or Japan. The OSS also investigated possible sightings of German V-1 and V-2 rockets before their operational use during the war. (Jacobs, UFO Controversy, p. 33.) The Central Intelligence Group, the predecessor of the CIA, also monitored reports of "ghost rockets" in Sweden in 1946. (CIG, Intelligence Report, 9 April 1947.)

 

Source: American Chronicle

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