By the end of this news briefs you may just have put some black tape over your webcam...
- Physicist's weird reverse-causality experiment goes in a new direction.
- While other physicists look for time-travelers on Facebook.
- Dogs poop in alignment with Earth's magnetic field.
- 10 extraordinary sacred sites around Britain.
- Californian crop circle hoax shows human propensity for pattern recognition and belief confirmation.
- Esquire magazine's (previously paywalled) hit piece on Proof of Heaven author Eben Alexander is now available freely online.
- And in case you forgot that we should be skeptical of skepticism too, here's why we should be careful believing the 'facts' in the Esquire article.
- Satanists seek to place a 7-foot tall goat headed statue at the Oklahoma state capitol.
- Stumbling into the world of Creepypasta: With a flood of dark memes and viral horror stories, the internet is mapping the contours of modern fear. Bonus: the article quotes TDG editor Cat Vincent and his Darklore article on Slenderman!
- Esquire profiles legendary occultist and underground film-maker Kenneth Anger.
- Weird London, mapped.
- Looted 1000-year-old treasure discovered in British Museum storage room.
- Putting a face to 'Stonehenge Man'.
- If you think the gear at this year's CES looks futuristic and super-cool, it might be worth reminding yourself what it will look like in 2034.
- Human ingenuity has created a world that the mind can no longer master. Have we finally reached our limits?
- Your New Year's resolution should be to believe in free will.
- How to make atheism less awful in 2014.
- In the tough guy world of an American prison, a former inmate returns to teach mindfulness meditation.
- No form, feelings, perceptions, mental formations, consciousness: A Buddhist perspective on AI.
- Drug may help adults acquire perfect pitch and learn language like kids.
- Total Information Awareness: If you weren't paranoid before, you will be after watching this.
- Frostquake! Sharknadoes can't be far off now.
- Image of the Day: A giant twisting serpent skeleton emerges from the Loire River in France. More here.
Quote of the Day:
The first correlation is with the unbalance between technological acceleration and political retrogression, which has proceeded earth wide at ever widening danger levels since 1914 and especially since 1964. The breaking apart is fundamentally the schizoid and schismatic mental fugue of lawyer-politicians attempting to administrate a worldwide technology whose mechanisms they lack the education to comprehend.
Hexagram 23, interpreted by the First Universal Cybernetic-Kinetic-Ultramicro-Programmer, in Robert Anton Wilson and Robert Shea's Illuminatus! (published 1975)
2014 is the new black.
- Did Roger Ebert have a deathbed vision?
- Very close encounter: Pilot tells of near-miss with UFO at Heathrow Airport.
- Californian crop circle was a publicity stunt by computer chip company Nvidia.
- A movie about Stanley Kubrick faking the Moon landing? Yes, please.
- Ronald Reagan and the occultist: The amazing story of the thinker behind his sunny optimism.
- Outsider Colin Wilson skated over knowledge, it's true, but he also exhilarated a generation with the bold possibilities of life.
- Cryptozoology in Australia: where the wild things aren't?
- Bigfoot hunter claims he killed the hairy beast and will take it on tour. Even if it were true, would any decent person claim this proudly?
- The Vatican is training up a new generation of exorcists to meet growing demand.
- SETI is a bargain.
- The new field of plant neurobiology.
- Human body parts fall from the sky over Saudi Arabia.
- Why brain death isn't a simple on-off switch.
- What is the origin of the iconic medieval 'plague mask'?
- Cyclopean Masonry: A Mystery of the Ancient World.
- An atheist meets the masters of the universe. Spoiler: does not involve He-Man or Skeletor.
- Is religion a product of psychotropic drug use?
- Unique neolithic child cemetery found in Egypt.
- The 20 most astonishing additions to Atlas Obscura in 2013.
Thanks Jason and Rick.
Quote of the Day:
If you ever start taking things too seriously, just remember that we are talking monkeys on an organic spaceship flying through the universe.
Back on the Grail bike we hop, with a weekend news briefs collection to get through some of the things we've missed over the break...
- Researchers levitate objects and manipulate them in three dimensions using ultrasonic waves.
- Do foxes use a 'magnetic sense' to hunt in the winter snow?
- Patients in a vegetative state respond emotionally to pictures of loved ones.
- Does everything have consciousness?
- Losing one's head: a frustrating search for the truth about how long a person remains conscious after decapitation.
- New research contradicts the standard biological model of animal cell communication, with the discovery that cells, like neurons, have the ability to transmit and receive biological signals by making physical contact with each other, even at long distance.
- People who can only see half the world can't reason about the past.
- Signs of the coming robot rebellion: US military predicts the rise of autonomous drone swarms, coming to a sky near you.
- Intricate Californian crop circle draws crowds.
- Four creatures unknown to science found off Scotland coast.
- The naturalisation of the poltergeist phenomenon.
- Prayer can help even non-believers resist temptation.
- Incubus: the medieval nightmare disease.
- Do schizophrenics live in parallel universes?
- 22 incredibly strange underground realms found in science fiction.
- Hear the sound of the Earth moving from the deepest hole on the planet.
- Is Earth surrounded by dark matter?
- King Tut's mummified erect penis may point to ancient religious struggle. Hopefully literally, like a clue for Nick Cage to follow in the next instalment of National Treasure.
- What happens when you scream out your window at night in Sweden.
Quote of the Day:
Our myths matter a good deal, and how we think of elves is of vital importance to how we think of ourselves
Happy New Year to you all! To start 2014, a look back at the year that was...
- Wired's top science stories of the year.
- Scientific American's top 10 science stories of 2013.
- And…Discover Magazine's top ten science stories of 2013.
- How 2013 looked in archaeology.
- Look! Up in the sky! It's 2013's most bizarre UFO and paranormal stories.
- The top 20 weird news stories of 2013.
- Or, check out Cosmic Log's weirdest news stories of 2013.
- What 2013's top esoteric stories mean.
- The biggest stories on io9 in 2013.
- 10 awesome new species discovered in 2013. Sadly, or happily, no Bigfoot on the list.
- A round-up of the top Bigfoot, cryptozoology, new species and other news lists of 2013.
- The top ten brain science and psychology studies of 2013.
- Bleeding Cool's 11 best graphic novels of 2013.
- The best movies of last year.
- The 20 best psychedelic videos of 2013.
- 40 astonishing photos that won awards in 2013.
- In Memoriam: Notable deaths in the skeptical and alternative communities.
- The top ten evil clown stories of 2013.
Quote of the Day:
Considering modern data, it is likely that many of the fakirs of the past, who are now known as saints, did, or to some degree did, perform the miracles that have been attributed to them. Miracles, or stunts, that were in accord with the dominant power of the period were fostered, and miracles that conflicted with [it]…were discouraged, or were savagely suppressed…And that, in the succeeding age of Materialism—or call it the Industrial Era—there is the same state of subservience to a dominant, so that young men are trained to the glory of the job, and dream and invent in fields that are likely to interest stockholders, and are schooled into thinking that all magics, except their own industrial magics, are fakes, superstitions, or newspaper yarns.
Charles Hoy Fort
- Titan’s seas in totality.
- Highlights --scientifically-- for 2013.
- Europa’s tectonic shift.
- Lift-off for Europe’s Gaia.
- Our kaleidoscopic sun.
- Valve repair on ISS leads to Gravity-like spacewalk. Don’t. Let. Go.
- Exoplanets gain mass.
- Your own Carbonite Solo?
- Ozone hole healing under heat lamp.
- U.nidentified F.loating… A.rk?
- The waters of Mars.
- Alternative Three-esque ‘batch consignments’?
- Kimberlite and Antarctic diamonds.
- Electron shape, recalibrated.
- If I could turn back time…
- Soundwaves & windshield-wipers.
- Evolving the definition of being human.
- Quietly moving toward fusion. But is it cold?
- U.K. from B.C.
- Antarctica’s about to get more crowded.
- Lost data creates new mysteries.
- The winners of Nat Geo’s 2013 photo contest.
- On an ice-free Iceland?
- Table salt: Forbidden Alchemy.
- Human vs. nonhuman progress.
- EVP evidence remains intriguing but elusive.
- Lego cars for bigger kids.
- Olympus Bioscapes photo competition--Ready for its close-up.
- Video of Jade Rabbit’s deployment.
- Evidence of the looming robot uprising…
Quote of the Day:
"Ho ho ho! Come on Dasher, Dancer, Prancer, Vixen, Comet, Cupid, Dronner & Blitzen!"
- The DARPA Robotics Challenge trials are next week. Who will take the gold & who will destroy all humans?
- Samantha West: The first robotic telemarketer? --Not exactly…
- Can a human fall in love with a computer? Only if she's blue & you're surrounded by the Covenant.
- How are you gonna power up all your electronic implants? With edible batteries, of course!
- Increase your 5D energy with the End of the Year Mysterious Universe special broadcast! --episode bonus: Dinosaur Porn.
- 'Tis the season to give: Miriam Delicado offers her book Blue Star Fulfilling for free on PDF.
- Get in a festive --& creative-- mood with the amazing greeting cards of Disney legend Ward Kimball.
- 1 in 200 American moms became pregnant without having sex --That dove sure likes to fly around!
- Things I look forward in 2014: Dawn of the Planet of the Apes.
- Vaclav Smil: The man Bill Gates thinks you should read.
- Brain scans suggest patients in vegetative state can still emotionally react to their loved ones.
- Edward Snowden used to wear EFF anti-NSA hoodies to work --spooks can't take a hint...
- Cats first domesticated humans about 5300 years ago.
- Meanwhile dog owners can finally translate the barks of their pets.
- Last crypto-find of the year: A new species of tapir in the Amazons.
- Red Pill of the Day: Kill it with fire --U R doin' it wrong!!!
Thanks to y'all. See ya on 2014!
Quote of the Day:
This is my last news briefs for 2013. Thank you for reading my mad wanderings & eclectic finds. I hope you all have a wonderful holiday season. So until next year, here are a few of my favourite things...
- Why do we think science can explain everything when we live in a dappled world?
- Seeking Verity. "I look for something other when I carve them. They’re not connected to this world. They’re in another place."
- The President of Uruguay lives on a humble farm & gives away most of his income to charity. "I'm called 'the poorest president', but I don't feel poor. Poor people are those who only work to try to keep an expensive lifestyle, and always want more and more."
- High praise for Jonathan Black's new book The Sacred History: How Angels, Mystics, & Higher Intelligence Made our World (Amazon US Kindle, UK). The idealist in me can't wait to read it!
- Wishing Trees of Anatolia: Turkic myths, dreams, & the Tree of Life.
- New study shows psilocybin, the psychoactive ingredient in magic mushrooms, repairs brain damage from extreme trauma.
- David Lynch's dream logic: the best cherry pie & coffee in the left or right hemisphere! (Amazon US, UK).
- Rumours of Mark Twain writing novels posthumously are greatly exaggerated.
- 'Fossil' words reveal an ancestral language that existed as far as 15,000 years ago.
- Scientists poke, prod, & bring to life a Neolithic man buried 5500 years ago in a barrow near Stonehenge. Crikey, he looks like me! Sans blue eyes & a few pounds...
- Egyptian officials investigate rumours of secret shenanigans in the Great Pyramid.
- Archaeoacoustics confirms the temple of Kukulkan at Chichen Itza was purposefully designed to mimic the quetzal bird's chirp.
- Music can reveal hidden clues encoded in humanity's ancient history & evolution.
- Once upon a time in China, cats began domesticating humans.
- Humans are not smarter than animals -- we just don't understand them.
- North America's great snowy owl migration continues to confuzzle & amaze.
- Crows hold the key to understanding
catsextraterrestrials. With our crack ambassadorial team of crows, orangutans, cats, aardvaarks, & dolphins, we should be able to avoid intergalactic war.
- Around the Earth in 80 minutes aboard a helium balloon capsule.
Thanks to the trickster of pronoia.
Quote of the Day:
I have some discomfort both with believers and with nonbelievers when their opinions are not based on facts. I am extremely uncomfortable with dogmatic atheists, who claim there can be no God; to my knowledge, there is no strong evidence for that position.
I'm also uncomfortable with dogmatic believers; to my knowledge, they don't have any strong evidence either. If we don't know the answer, why are we under so much pressure to make up our minds, to declare our allegiance to one hypotheses or the other?
~ Carl Sagan (Amazon)
- Was Noah's Ark saucer-shaped? I'm not saying it was aliens, but…
- Polynesian people used binary numbers 600 years ago.
- Study confirms that Neanderthals ritually buried their dead at least 50,000 years ago.
- Scientists make one of the biggest animal discoveries of the century: a new species of tapir has been discovered in Brazil.
- (Please) Don't Be Evil: Google buys company famous for scary military robots.
- New calculations suggest the Universe could collapse at any time. Have a happy day!
- New Stonehenge visitor centre will give a fresh perspective on the ‘inside’ of the circle.
- But druids are angry at archaeologists for the display of human remains.
- Crows could be the key to understanding alien intelligence.
- The boy whose brain could unlock autism.
- Multivitamins are a waste of money, say doctors.
- Six of the biggest holes left in our planet by flying space rocks.
- Rethinking Ancient Egyptian sky lore.
- Australian scientists grow a kidney from stem cells. After today's Ashes victory against the old country, they might want to start growing some livers, stat!
- A late entry in the 'headline of the year' contest: Swimming pool evacuated after artificial leg is mistaken for a paedophile.
- Weird science gone wrong: cheese made out of bacteria from human armpits.
- (Good) skeptic Hayley Stevens reviews my book Stop Worrying! There Probably is an Afterlife.
- Image(s) of the Day: Celebrate Philip K. Dick's birthday with mind bending art from his paperback novels.
Quote of the Day:
The basic tool for the manipulation of reality is the manipulation of words. If you can control the meaning of words, you can control the people who must use the words.
Philip K. Dick
"We are not born into the world. We are born into something that we make into the world."
- The holographic universe.
- El Sol in reverse.
- Gravity’s rainbow?
- Space-borne noble gas detected.
- Mars’ life-friendly lake.
- Recalibrating the habitable zone.
- Europa’s water vapor geysers.
- The duality of particles and waves.
- Evolution at work.
- Chicken & egg debate adds jelly.
- Tired of squeezing blood from a stone-- Try hydrogen.
- Unraveling the numbers in a post-Cicada 3301 world.
- Disney princesses go Jedi & Sith.
- This week’s proof of the pending robot uprising… NASA ‘Bot.
Quote of the Day:
“There is evidence to suggest that our world and everything in it — from snowflakes to maple trees to falling stars and spinning electrons — are also only ghostly images, projections from a level of reality so beyond our own it is literally beyond both space and time.”
Cuix amo nican nica nimonantzin?
Cuix amo nocehuallotitlan, necauhyotitlan in tica?
Cuix amo nehuatl innimopaccayeliz?
Cuix amo nocuixanco nomamalhuazco in tica?
Cuix oc itla in motech moneoui?
- Gaze on to the eyes of Our Lady of Guadalupe, and behold a Fortean mystery.
- Other eyes are spying on how many hours you spend on WoW, though…
- No price is to high to keep
- But wait, there's moar! The Pentagon wants this super spy satellite for Xmas.
- ...Which is nowhere NEAR as creepy as what Google plans to do to your ceiling!
- Transhumanism's folly: Not taking the Unconscious into account.
- A jewel found at the heart of Quantum physics.
- Oldest human footprints found in North America? Um, Nope!
- The myth of Easter Island's collapse.
- Starchild researcher Lloyd Pye (1946-2013) memorial, courtesy of Open Minds.
- In memory of Philip Coppens (1971-2012).
- My homies of The Grimerica Show interview Alex Tsakiris, the great champion of NDE research.
- Mars One wants to send a rover to the Red Planet by 2018.
- Pro-UFO Disclosure John Podesta is now Obama's newest advisor.
- German UFO video. CGI hoaxes haven't progressed that much since 2007...
- Red Pill of the Day: Mos Eisleyan Rhapsody.
Thanks Kat, Susan, Jasun & Tonatzin.
Quote of the Day:
"To create a replica-self out of conscious thoughts and memories is like taking a single word out of the collected works of Shakespeare, turning it into a Broadway show, and expecting a standing ovation."