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Morning Cup of Links: Drunk Octopus Texts

Buff Your Brain! A few shortcuts to increasing your IQ make it simpler than you thought.
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In a series of text messages and photos, a drunk octopus steals a diver's camera and then relates his adventures to other cephalopods. There's really nothing I can add to that.
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Putting Scotch whisky in an aluminum can seems like defeating the purpose of paying for Scotch, doesn't it? Open a can, and you have to drink all twelve ounces.
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Bob Anderson, who choreographed all the major movie sword fights of the past few decades, passed away at age 89. In a video interview, Anderson and Viggo Mortensen talk about the art of film swordplay.
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Gravitas is a simple physics game in which you release a little red block by rotating the fence holding it. Or multiple fences. And please avoid the force field!
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The Highest-Grossing Films of 2011. What does it say about our tastes that eight of the top ten are sequels?
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The dancing inmates at the Cebu Detention Center in the Pilippines have inspired a web-only musical production. Part one of Prison Dancer will drop in March, but the teaser should hold you  until then.
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If you are going to graduate this year, don't do this, especially in high heels. Hundreds of parents are videotaping the event, and your name will be enshrined for posterity.
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Gigantic Glowing Forms Hovering Over The World's Cities. You may think of UFOs, but they are enormous featherweight art installations from Janet Echelman.
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There's a shortage of ADHD drugs. Is it the DEA's fault for cracking down on abuse, or the manufacturer's fault for trying to maximize profits?
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Money for (Practically) Nothing: 4 Very Big Paychecks for Very Little Work. The problem is that these schemes are pretty much un-reproducable.

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Stradivarius Violins Get Their Distinctive Sound By Mimicking the Human Voice
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Italian violinist Francesco Geminiani once wrote that a violin's tone should "rival the most perfect human voice." Nearly three centuries later, scientists have confirmed that some of the world's oldest violins do in fact mimic aspects of the human singing voice, a finding which scientists believe proves "the characteristic brilliance of Stradivari violins."

Using speech analysis software, scientists in Taiwan compared the sound produced by 15 antique instruments with recordings of 16 male and female vocalists singing English vowel sounds, The Guardian reports. They discovered that violins made by Andrea Amati and Antonio Stradivari, the pioneers of the instrument, produce similar "formant features" as the singers. The resonance frequencies were similar between Amati violins and bass and baritone singers, while the higher-frequency tones produced by Stradivari instruments were comparable to tenors and contraltos.

Andrea Amati, born in 1505, was the first known violin maker. His design was improved over 100 years later by Antonio Stradivari, whose instruments now sell for several million dollars. "Some Stradivari violins clearly possess female singing qualities, which may contribute to their perceived sweetness and brilliance," Hwan-Ching Tai, an author of the study, told The Guardian.

Their findings were published in the journal Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences of the United States of America. A 2013 study by Dr. Joseph Nagyvary, a professor emeritus at Texas A&M University, also pointed to a link between the sounds produced by 250-year-old violins and those of a female soprano singer.

According to Vox, a blind test revealed that professional violinists couldn't reliably tell the difference between old violins like "Strads" and modern ones, with most even expressing a preference for the newer instruments. However, the value of these antique instruments can be chalked up to their rarity and history, and many violinists still swear by their exceptional quality.

[h/t The Guardian]

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Orange-Themed Trivia
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