News Briefs 20-04-2017

Given the current global situation, I'd suggest you read as fast as you can…

Thanks to Chuckycabra.

Quote of the Day:

"When the power of love overcomes the love of power the world will know peace."

˜Jimmi Hendrix

Teenage Band Plays a Tool Song at a Fundraising Dinner, When Danny Carey Himself Offers to Sit In On Drums

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So you're a teenage band playing a gig at a fund-raising dinner for your music academy, and you've got a Tool song in your set-list. Turns out Tool drummer Danny Carey is actually attending the dinner, and he asks to sit in on the song. What do you do?

Give the man some drumsticks of course!

That's exactly what happened to these young musicians, of the band Reformed, while playing their last gig:

Finally got this full video up showing the entire band playing with Danny...this was not planned. He happened to be there for the fundraiser & was lovin' watching the kids play...then he was told one of the songs in the setlist was a TOOL song, and he asked if they'd mind if he played along...great guy, amazing drummer & a fun evening!

Here's another view:

Tool are currently touring around the U.S. - details can be found on their website.

News Briefs 19-04-2017

Happy Bicycle Day!

Thanks @MichaelMHughes.

Quote of the Day:

In studying the literature connected with my work, I became aware of the great universal significance of visionary experience. It plays a dominant role, not only in mysticism and the history of religion, but also in the creative process in art, literature, and science. More recent investigations have shown that many persons also have visionary experiences in daily life, though most of us fail to recognize their meaning and value.

Albert Hofmann

New Study Fails to Replicate Previous Precognition Studies

Crystal Ball

We have previously covered positive results for psi experiments involving precognition (see the links at the bottom of the post) - also described as 'presentiment', or 'precall' - so it's only proper that we also mention failures to replicate those results. Which was the outcome of a new study conducted by Dr David Vernon, soon to be published in the Journal of the Society for Psychical Research, available online as a PDF download. Here's the abstract:

The idea that future practise can somehow influence current behaviour has been examined within the paradigm of precognition. Previous work attempting to examine possible precognitive effects using a modified repetition priming task showed that participants were more accurate to respond to material they would see again in the future. Such a finding was taken to indicate that a task relying primarily on accuracy of performance, such as a memory recall task, could be a more sensitive measure of precognition, or ‘precall’.

Furthermore, utilising arousing images as opposed to everyday words may elicit a stronger precall effect, and by conducting such a study on-line it may be possible to eliminate and/or reduce any potential experimenter effects. The prediction when completing such a task was that post-recall practise would lead to greater precall of those items practised compared to items not practised.

Such an on-line precall study utilising emotive images was completed by 94 participants. However, comparison of the accuracy between images that were subsequently repeated and those that were not showed no evidence of a precall effect. Nevertheless, post recall practise did show an initial improvement in accuracy which plateaued after the second trial. The failure to find any evidence of precall could simply be indicative of the impossibility of such a notion. However, given that others have reported precall effects the failure to find a precall effect in this study is discussed in terms of possible methodological factors inhibiting psi performance.

It's worth pointing out that Dr Vernon notes in a recent blog post that he has now completed four experiments on precognition, with two being failing to replicate, while the other two "showed statistically significant effects, where practise in the future led to better recall in the present".

Link: PDF download of "Exploring precall using arousing images and utilising a memory recall practise task on-line"


News Briefs 18-04-2017


Thanks Blair, @JackieCous, @FriendstoKnow and @Tobadzistini.

Quote of the Day:

Let them worship as they will; every man can follow his own conscience, provided it does not interfere with sane reason or bid him against the liberty of his fellow-men.

Kemal Ataturk

They (Still) Live: John Carpenter's Classic Movie is More Relevant Than Ever Today


In recent years I've been struck by how much John Carpenter's 1988 movie They Live seems to be more and more relevant as the years pass by (e.g. we posted this They Live inspired Pepsi satire just last week). The power of corporations continues to grow, from the 'too big to fail' mantra that now puts their welfare above ours, to the Citizens United decision that allowed unfettered financial backing of politicians by the mega-wealthy, creating the ideal environment for plutocracy.

It seems I'm not the only one to have noticed this though, as the above short film about the relevance of They Live also focuses on how it applies in the modern day. As John Carpenter himself points out in the film:

[In the 1980s] there was a great deal of obsession with greed and making a lot of money, and some of the values that I grew up with had been pushed aside. So I decided to scream out in the middle of the night and make a statement about that.

And They Live is partially a political statement. It's partially a tract on the world that we live in today...and as a matter of fact, right now it's even more true than it was then.


News Briefs 14-04-2017

“I know that many will call this useless work.”

Quote of the Day:

“Love shows itself more in adversity than in prosperity; as light does, which shines most where the place is darkest.”

Leonardo Da Vinci

Key Ingredients For Life Found on Saturn's Moon Enceladus

Enecladus Saturn NASA alien life

Finding extraterrestrial life in our solar system just got a huge boost. NASA's Cassini space probe has detected molecular hydrogen in the plumes of saltwater that burst from the oceans buried beneath the icy surface of Saturn's moon Enceladus. Scientists remain cautiously agnostic, but the discovery of key ingredients for life is a game changer. With subsurface oceans found beneath other moons in our solar system, most famously Jupiter's frozen moon Europa, the chances of finding extraterrestrial life (at the bacterial level at least) is exciting. It also has implications for the possibility of alien life elsewhere in the galaxy. We're only now able to detect atmospheres on planets orbiting distant stars -- what about their moons?

Read more.

Above: Colour-enhanced image from Cassini.
Below: Plumes of saltwater burst from the icy surface of Enceladus.

Enceladus Saturn NASA water plumes oceans alien life

News Briefs 13-04-2017

Worst part of ParaMania 2017: The Museum of Death.
Best part of ParaMania 2017: The Aetherius Society's HQ.
See y'all in N'awlins next year, fellow Discordian priests!

Thanks to Chris Heyes

Quote of the Day:

"Opinions are like @#$holes, you should have yours regularly checked out, and if an expert tells you something is wrong, you should listen."