Mysterious News Briefly — December 16, 2021
After completing its 17th flight on December 5th, NASA's Ingenuity Mars Helicopter has a total flight time on Mars of 30 minutes and 48 seconds, a distance of 2.2 miles (3,592 meters), top altitude of 40 feet (12 meters) and top speed of 10 mph (5 meters per second). Sounds impressive … until you watch the Starship Enterprise launch a shuttle.
Louisiana State University researchers in Madagascar discovered a rare, quarter-sized new species of frog called the Gephyromantis marokoroko that is covered in warty bumps and has bright red eyes. Is it really rare or just recovering from a holiday party?
While the anti-seizure qualities of cannabidiol (CBD) for epileptic children are well known, new research has found that numerous other compounds in the cannabis plant also show anticonvulsant properties which are more powerful than CBD, but still require more testing before kids with epilepsy can be treated with marijuana. Who would have thought Willie Nelson would be your favorite doctor?
For a mere $1,194,903 (£900,000) or best offer, you can own the newly-renovated Fern View House which overlooks Loch Ness in the Scottish Highlands and offers a perfect location for Loch Ness Monster spotting. Definition of irony – during open houses, the TV is tuned to the 24-hour Nessie Cam.
New studies of the fossils of Genyornis newtoni, the huge flightless “thunder birds” that stood 3 meters tall and weighed as much as 6 modern emus, showed that they may have died out 45,000 years ago because their skeletons were riddled with the bone disease osteomyelitis which weakened them to the point that they couldn’t escape the mud of drying lakes. How sad … 'Thunder' ended with a thud.
Arachnologist Rod Crawford, curator at the Burke Museum in Seattle, evaluated the fictional Spider-Man’s spider powers in comparison to real spiders and concluded that a real Spider-Man would be weaker and less agile, but his wall-crawling, web-slinging and spider sense abilities are pretty accurate. But would he eat flies?
British robotics company Engineered Arts unveiled its latest robot male head named Adrian which has a realistically creepy range of facial expressions, beard stubble and moving eyebrows, and reminds people of Ash, the android sleeper agent in the movie ‘Alien’. “Why not Ripley?” asked everyone?
Here’s some bad news for painters – researchers studying Myxococcus xanthus, a social bacterium that moves and feeds in coordinated swarms, gave them artificial colors to better observe them and found the swarms formed a scene that looked remarkably similar to Van Gogh's “The Starry Night.” If you thought the lines at the Louvre were long now, wait until you have to wait to peer into the microscope.
At Pioneer Park Cemetery in Dallas, a statue with a woman’s body and a squid’s head appeared mysteriously – the second time in recent years a cephalopod-human hybrid statue showed up without explanation in Dallas. Is Neptune trying to tell us we’ve been wrong about mermaids?
What started out as reports of UFOs forcing two Russian commercial airliners to change course over the Black Sea recently has quickly turned into accusations of U.S. and NATO surveillance flights flying near Russia due to its potential conflict with Ukraine. If real aliens in UFOs are actually watching over us for our own safety, now would be a good time to violate the prime directive.