Mysterious News Briefly — January 14, 2021
A drawing of a pig found on a wall in a remote cavern system located on the Indonesian island of Sulawesi dates back 45,500 years, making it the world's oldest depiction of an animal. Lacking a refrigerator to hang it on, did the artist’s proud mama draw a glacier around it?
New data on dark space sent back by the New Horizons space probe – with its camera pointed at deep space without cosmic light to distort its view -- shows that the total number of galaxies in the universe is only in the hundreds of billions, not 2 trillion galaxies as previously thought. Somewhere in the afterlife, Carl Sagan is saying, “Told you so.”
The Curiosity rover landed on Mars on August 6, 2012, which means it has spent 3,000 Martian days or sols travelling the Red Planet. And 3,000 Martian nights wondering, "Why didn’t they give me a bigger battery”?
A zebra can’t change its stripes, but it might want to after learning of a new study which found that a dull, featureless, grey color provides better camouflage against predators than stripes. And it makes the zebra’s rear look thinner too.
Perseverance pays off as a 50-year Japanese research project has finally confirmed that the millipede species Parafontaria laminata armigera – nicknamed ‘'train millipedes' because millions of them mysteriously swarm mountain train tracks every eight years – actually exists on a rare eight-year life cycle and the swarms are once-in-a-lifetime mating trips. Does this mean trains running them over are on a guilt trip?
A Hacksmith Industries intern built a working hoverboard by installed eight spinning magnets to create a powerful magnetic field which cause a steel floor to generate an opposing magnetic field, creating enough space to allow it to hover – although not for long because it generates enough heat to require having a fire extinguisher handy. A hoverboard that gives a hotfoot – sounds like "Back to the Future’s" Biff Tannen’s evil dream.
If you’ve ever wondered why you can almost never swat a house fly, a new study found that they have tiny, sticklike hind wings (halteres) with knobs on the ends that give them both the stability and speed to takeoff in about 0.007 seconds (7 milliseconds) and just one wingbeat – five times faster than other flies. Do they rub their tiny front legs in anticipation of foiling humans again?
From the “We could have told your that” file comes a first-of-its-kind study which found that legalizing recreational marijuana causes junk food sales to rise by about 6.3% in terms of sales and 5.1% by volume. That ‘whoosh’ you hear is convenience store owners rushing to Colorado, Oregon and Washington.
The stretch of Arctic ice between Greenland and the Canadian Arctic Archipelago is known as 'the Last Ice Area' and the oldest ice on the planet, but new research shows that it is shrinking to the point that it may not survive climate change. Maybe Ice Cube, Ice-T and Vanilla Ice can hold a telethon.
Residents of Horsham and Pulborough in the UK are reporting one of those mysterious hums that some say has been around for years, primarily at night and the source cannot be traced to nearby railway works, kilns, sewage works, underground pipes or construction. Did anyone feed it into Google Hum?