Mysterious News Briefly — November 9, 2020
The Iskitimka River and a few others in the industrial city of Kemerovo in south-west Siberia turned deep red recently, with ducks and animals refusing to go near them, and experts believe it’s the result of a chemical spill that no one has taken responsibility for as of yet. It’s always a bad sign when no one writes songs about your red rived like Red River Valley or Red Rain.
An acclaimed Brazilian pianist who lost the use of his right hand in a 1995 mugging in Bulgaria is finally playing his favorite Bach sonatas again thanks to “bionic gloves” invented by industrial designer Ubiratan Bizarro. You can also use them to play “Chopsticks” but the gloves will hate you for it.
The first flying car could hit the market next year after Slovakian developer Klein Vision completed two successful two take-offs and landings bookending t-minute flights where the AirCar reach a speed of 108 kt (200 kmh/124 mph) and altitudes of almost 1,000 ft. Even more exciting, it has a luggage compartment that holds more than the overhead bin plus the space under the seat in front of you.
A new study published in the Journal of Vertebrate Paleontology presents evidence that perissodactyls—the group of hoofed mammals that includes horses, rhinos and tapirs – originated and evolved 55 million years ago in or near present day India from a sheep-sized creature known as the Cambaytherium. It’s still hard to imagine horses and rhinos being related – would Kentucky hold a Derby for rhino racing?
Scientists studying monkeys at a zoo in Finland found that white-faced saki monkeys preferred the sounds of automotive traffic over the natural sounds of a rain forest. Of course they do – the sound of traffic accidents is the sound of humans getting what they deserve for putting monkeys in a zoo.
A Michigan entrepreneur has converted a 53-foot semi-truck trailer into the world’s first mobile bowling alley, featuring two slightly-shorter-that regulation lanes, balls, automatic scoring system, temperature control, neon lighting, 80-inch theater screen, a sky lounge and a state-of-the-art sound system. It’s the perfect party entertainment for getting dads out of the bouncy castle.
Work has begun in Manchester, England, on the world’s first major plant to use wind power to chill compressed air into a liquid form and then store it until later when it can be reconverted to drive turbines and generate electricity. With all that compressed air, the plant will have the world’s cleanest driveways too.
A Journal of Marketing study found that most people think that the prettier a food or dish is, the healthier it must be. Millions of dollars await the first geneticist who can grow celery root that looks like pepperoni pizza.
Japanese researchers at the University of Tsukuba are creating cyborg Madagascar cockroaches called Calmbots that can be used to transport objects around the home, draw things on paper and act as input interfaces for smart devices. They’re ‘calm’ until they see a sleepy homeowner chasing after them with a broom.