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WTF? Turns out nobody actually knows why we have chins

| blog, Health, L&B World, Science, Weird | December 30, 2015

Hmmmmm. (Picture: Getty)

What are chins all about, anyway?

Sure, they help us to chew things, and if you’re lucky they give you a jawline to make the ladies swoon like Desperate Dan. But why? What’s it all about?

This is actually one of the most puzzling questions scientists have scratched their heads (and chins) over for the last 100 years. It might seem obvious, but our brothers and sisters in the chimp populace don’t have them, and they manage to eat their bananas all the same.

Researchers have come up with several theories about why we’re the only hominid with such a feature.

1. Dietary changes

In the past, when we were gnawing meat from the carcass and cracking… Read the full story

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Google’s ‘balls dropping’ music page is really addictive

| blog, L&B World, Science, Tech | December 4, 2015

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It makes music (Picture: Balls Dropping/Josh Nimoy)

You need to have a go at this.

Google has made a website where you create electronic music by moving your mouse cursor to draw lines on a screen. Balls drop down from the top of the browser and bounce off, creating different sounds depending on the angles.

It’s called ‘Balls Dropping’…

Questionable name, but don’t let that put you off.

Depending on how skillful you are placing your lines, you’ll either create an electro symphony give yourself a headache.

Here’s how it looks:

MORE: Cheeky husband puts up an air freshener as a ‘Christmas Tree’ – wife not amused

balls-dropping-gifRead the full story

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Longterm pain relief drugs like morphine but without the side effects could soon be available

| blog, L&B World, Science, UK | December 4, 2015

Woman rubbing aching back Getty
There could soon be a lasting treatment for pain (Picture: Getty)

A woman who spent her whole life unable to feel pain has been hurt for the first time after researchers gave her a drug used to treat heroin overdoses – and they think this could lead to a breakthrough in pain relief.

Scientists studied the woman to try and figure out exactly what causes pain – and how it can be stopped.

Her rare condition meant she couldn’t tell if she ran her fingers under scalding or freezing water, but after scientists gave her a medicine to block opioids she was able to feel pain when burned her with a… Read the full story

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New drug could increase your dog’s life by five years

| blog, Dogs, L&B World, Science, UK | December 4, 2015

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Me? Live older? YES PLEASE! (Picture: Getty)

All dog lovers will know the pain of a beloved pet’s death – but a pioneering new drugs trial could increase their life span by up to five years.

The trial, which is currently underway at the University of Washington, involves treating 32-middle aged dogs with the lifespan altering drug rapamycin.

It’s previously been proven to increase the lifespan of mice when used in small quantities, and it’s for this reason that scientists are now trialling the drug on dogs.

Daniel Promislow, a geneticist involved in the trials, said: ‘If rapamycin has a similar effect in dogs – and it’s important to keep in mind we… Read the full story

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This simple trick can STOP your toast landing butter-side down

| blog, Food, L&B World, News, Science | December 2, 2015

Your life will never be the same again after a team of scientists found a trick to ensure toast doesn’t land butter-side down.

Well, we say scientists, but we actually mean children.

But they did drop 100 slices of toast – and found that slices with more butter on tended to land butter-side up.

So as long as you don’t mind consuming about a million calories a slice, you’re in luck.

Graham’s The Family Dairy carried out the experiment with the help of Molly, six, Lily, five, and four-year-old Ernie.

We feel obliged to point out here that as Graham’s is a dairy, they may have some kind of vested interest in making us all eat… Read the full story

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Here’s how to work out someone’s personality, according to an ex FBI agent

| blog, L&B World, Science, World | November 29, 2015

FBI

If there’s one organisation you’d trust to work out how to read someone, it’s the FBI.

Now ex-FBI agent LaRae Quy has come up with a few tips of how to work out someone’s personality.

Here’s what she has to say:

1. Create a baseline

Analyse their behaviour as a whole.

We all have our individual quirks and behaviour patterns – whether that be a twitch, a squint, or even a constant desire to scratch our head.

But it’s key to differentiate between these and work out whether they are simply mannerisms, or instead indicative of anger, deception or nervousness.

2. Look for inconsistencies

Try and spot inconsistencies in the baseline. For example, if someone has a habit of clearing their throat when nervous, they could be using it around you – and it’s important to suss out exactly what it is that’s responsible for the nerves.

3. Look at these coming together

Keep an eye out and see if several of the… Read the full story

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Company says it will use artificial intelligence ‘to bring the dead back to life’ by 2045

| blog, L&B World, Science, Tech | November 26, 2015

artificial intelligence
Humai says it will resurrect the dead by transplanting their brains into robots (Picture: Getty Images)

A new company has cropped up claiming to be able to resurrect the dead.

Humai says it will ‘reinvent the afterlife’ by bringing dead people back to life by 2045, ‘using artificial intelligence and nanotechnology to store data’ on how your body works.

It then claims it will code this info ‘into multiple sensor technologies, which will be built into an artificial body with the brain of a deceased human’.

In an interview with the website Popular Science, Josh Bocanegra, the CEO and founder of Humai, said: ‘After death we’ll freeze the brain using cryonics… Read the full story

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Someone actually hid a joke in the Periodic Table 80 years ago – here’s where

| blog, L&B World, News, Science | November 25, 2015

pu (2)

Our favourite scientist joke? ‘There are 10 types of people – those who understand binary, and those who don’t.’

But wacky scientists are always coming up with gags – and one chemist even sneaked a tiny LOL into the periodic table of the elements.

American chemist Glenn Seaborg got to name Plutonium in 1941 – after what was then the newest planet in the solar system, Pluto.

But Seaborg chose to make the symbol ‘Pu’, rather than ‘Pl’ – and he did so just for LOLs, according to family and colleagues.

‘The obvious choice for the symbol would have been Pl,’ chemists David Clark and David Hobart said in 2001, ‘but facetiously, Seaborg suggested Pu, like the words a child would exclaim, ‘Pee-yoo,’ when smelling something bad.’

MORE: This is the most dangerous drug in the world, according to science

His son Dave Seaborg said that the chemist, ‘just thought it would be… Read the full story

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Meet the fam: You’re actually related to this worm

| Animals, blog, Body image, L&B World, Science, Weird | November 19, 2015

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This worm probably has more in common with you than most of your human family (Picture: PA)

So it turns out worms are more human than we thought. 

Scientists have discovered the seabed-dwelling acorn worm shares 70 per cent of our DNA.

Remarkably, our relationship with this fleshy pink creature can be traced back to the Cambrian explosion around 550 million years ago.

When the DNA of two acorn worm species was compared with that of 32 animal species, it was found 8,600 of their gene families compared to 14,000 human ones.

MORE: Doctors pulled a live ‘wiggling’ tapeworm out of a man’s brain

That’s roughly 70 per cent of the human genome – too close for… Read the full story

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Here is the actual scientific reason cats are afraid of cucumbers

| blog, Cats, Food, L&B World, News, Science | November 18, 2015

turns out cats are scared of cucumbers

Many of us are a little uneasy around salad – but a spate of internet videos show that cats seem to be terrified of it – and in particular, of cucumbers.

Cats leap into the air, race for safety or ready themselves for battle in videos where owners sneak up behind them and place the salad item nearby.

But are cats actually afraid of the refreshing green foodstuff themselves? Was a prehistoric cat once terribly harmed by a cucumber?

Not so fast, suggests IFL Science – it could just be that the cats are afraid of anything at all sneaking up on them, not just cucumbers.

If their owners sneaked up and put a pineapple there instead, they’d be just as freaked, experts suggest.

MORE: Turns out cats are really scared of cucumbers

Animal behaviour specialist Dr Roger Mugford said: ‘I think that the reaction is due to the… Read the full story

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