Mysterious News Briefly — September 28, 2020
A discount chain in England is being criticized by concerned citizens for selling Ouija boards alongside fake spider webs, glow-in-the-dark skeletons and other Halloween items targeted at children. If they were really concerned about what their kids are forming letters to spell out, they’d ban Scrabble too.
Researchers in Germany have successfully sequenced the Y chromosomes of Neanderthals and Denisovans and determined that early modern humans completely bred the male Neanderthal chromosomes out of existence. If that’s the case, how do they explain hockey fights and eating contests?
Switzerland’s highest court has given the go-ahead for a vote in Basel City on whether to give basic constitutional rights to primates. This could be worth it just to see what apes marching in favor of it put on their signs.
Scientists at MIT and Massachusetts General Hospital are using a new AI algorithm to control delivering the correct amount of anesthetic drugs to a patient undergoing surgery. If they can teach it to tell jokes at the same time, this AI could also replace bartenders.
Distillers making counterfeit versions of expensive single-malt whiskies are being warned about a new “artificial tongue” developed by Scottish scientists that uses lasers to identify fakes without having to open the bottle. For a different reason, warnings should also be given to anyone planning find out more information by googling “artificial tongue.”
A new plan to geo-engineer ice formation in the Arctic, which is ice-free due to climate change, involves sprinkling broken glass in the water to reflect sunlight and promote ice growth. It’s not supposed to harm marine life, although it may annoy the walking catfish.
NASA has teamed up with the Estée Lauder cosmetics company to test its face cream in space and use astronauts to promote it. Doesn’t zero-gravity already get rid of wrinkles?
Rutgers University researchers conducting a first-of-its-kind study on the effects of 5G “leakage” have determined that 5G’s frequencies are so close to those used by weather sensors on satellites that they could leak into them and affect weather forecasting. A good way to test this might be to check on how many TV weather forecasters in China have been fired recently.
For the first time, scientists using China’s Chang’e 4 robotic spacecraft have measured the radiation on the lunar surface and found that astronauts on the next Moon mission will be exposed to radiation levels 200 times higher than on Earth and 2.6 times higher than the International Space Station crew gets daily. Does this explain Buzz Aldrin’s longevity or his ability to still do pushups?
NASA has narrowed the source of that mysterious leak on the space station to two Russian modules — one of which provides life support to the crew. The task of chewing gum now goes back to the Russian crew.