Mysterious News Briefly — December 3, 2021
Archaeologists uncovered an altar, dating back to between 1521 and 1610, near Plaza Garibaldi in Mexico City and found it contained a pot with human ashes that an Aztec family probably placed there to honor their dead and hide it from the Spanish ‘conquistadors’. Ashes to ashes, dust to dust, conquerors to conquerors – some things never change.
An Italian archaeologist and volcano exert says the 79 CE eruption of Mount Vesuvius on Herculaneum had the same effect on Pompeii as the atomic bomb did on the Japanese city of Hiroshima during WWII. One difference – less movies about it.
Researchers at the Australian National University (ANU) have identified unique molecular signals in the body that could be ‘hijacked’, recoded, converted into a solid form that might provide an ‘exercise in a pill’ for patients incapable of physical activity. Which will come first – the actual pill or talk show hosts claiming their ‘vitamin’ already does this?
Life as a Tyrannosaurus rex wasn’t all good – German researchers identified bone disease in the fossilized jaw of a Tyrannosaurus rex using a CT-based, nondestructive imaging technique. Tell that to the vet next time they complain about cleaning your mastiff’s teeth.
For those needing yet another reason to dislike Amazon … SilverLining, a nonprofit studying how to block the sun to geoengineer Earth’s climate, is running its complex models on Amazon’s cloud computing architecture instead of on an expensive supercomputer. Is Jeff Bezos worried about his bald head getting sunburned when the cowboy hat blows off?
Researchers have nicknamed a tiny, newly-discovered, sea-dwelling prehistoric worm (Lepidocoleus caliburnus) the “Excalibur worm” because it was covered in overlapping plates of calcite crystals that ran along the entire length of its body like an Arthurian knight in heavy armor. Sir Squirms-a-lot?
NASA combined 81 images taken by the Curiosity Mars rover last month and created a 360-degree panoramic selfie that its editors then combined into one frame that looks stunning but slighting warped. “Stunning but slightly warped” – Curiosity looks like a Hollywood actress?
Move over, mini-brains – a hospital in London used stem cells to grow mini-stomachs in a laboratory that can be used to study gastrointestinal diseases in children. Is it time for a “Frankenstein Mini-Me” movie?
Get ready for nightmares tonight – scientists used a camera-equipped remote submarine to record footage of a giant phantom jellyfish (Stygiomedusa gigantea) in the deep waters of Monterey Bay, California, that was eating its prey with one of its dual-purpose mouth-arms. “Mouth-arm” sounds like the dream of every lazy guy wanting to save time while drinking beer.
While examining Henneguya salminicola, a tadpole-like parasite that infects salmon, scientists at Tel Aviv University discovered these tiny 10-celled creatures can survive without oxygen, making them the first and so far only multi-celled animals that can survive in an anaerobic environment. That makes this the only creature who can ignore the “I wouldn’t go in there if I were you” bathroom warning.