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EVNautilus, Youtube
EVNautilus, Youtube

You Can See Right Through This Amazing Cockatoo Squid

EVNautilus, Youtube
EVNautilus, Youtube

You've probably never seen a squid quite like the cockatoo squid—or squinted so much to see any squid, for that matter.

As Laughing Squid reports, the Ocean Exploration Trust's Nautilus research ship recently captured impressive footage of the cockatoo squid (Taonius borealis)—also commonly referred to as the "glass squid"—while exploring the deep waters of Juan de Fuca Canyon off the coast of British Columbia's Salish Sea. Why is it called a "cockatoo" squid? The reason for that becomes abundantly clear once you get a closer look at the cephalopod, which sports a head crest that looks oddly similar to a cockatoo's.

As for the story behind its alternate name, that requires even less explanation: Like glass, this deep-sea creature is completely transparent—but that doesn't mean it's lacking in color. The 60-plus known species of cockatoo squids, which are most commonly found in the North Pacific Ocean, all have color-changing chromatophores that allow them to glow a red hue or get spots.

You can watch this amazing creature in action in the video below:

[h/t: Laughing Squid]

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science
What Pop Culture Gets Wrong About Dissociative Identity Disorder
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From the characters in Fight Club to Dr. Jekyll and Mr. Hyde, popular culture is filled with "split" personalities. These dramatic figures might be entertaining, but they're rarely (if ever) scientifically accurate, SciShow Psych's Hank Green explains in the channel's latest video. Most representations contribute to a collective misunderstanding of dissociative identity disorder, or DID, which was once known as multiple personality disorder.

Experts often disagree about DID's diagnostic criteria, what causes it, and in some cases, whether it exists at all. Many, however, agree that people with DID don't have multiple figures living inside their heads, all clamoring to take over their body at a moment's notice. Those with DID do have fragmented personalities, which can cause lapses of memory, psychological distress, and impaired daily function, among other side effects.

Learn more about DID (and what the media gets wrong about mental illness) by watching the video below.

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Food
Hate Red M&M's? You Need a Candy Color-Sorting Machine
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iStock

You don’t have to be a demanding rock star to live a life without brown M&M's or purple Skittles—all you need is some engineering know-how and a little bit of free time.

Mechanical engineering student Willem Pennings created a machine that can take small pieces of candy—like M&M's, Skittles, Reese’s Pieces, etc.—and sort them by color into individual piles. All Pennings needs to do is pour the candy into the top funnel; from there, the machine separates the candy—around two pieces per second—and dispenses all of it into smaller bowls at the bottom designated for each variety.

The color identification is performed with an RGB sensor that takes “optical measurements” of candy pieces of equal dimensions. There are limitations, though, as Pennings revealed in a Reddit Q&A: “I wouldn't be able to use this machine for peanut M&M's, since the sizes vary so much.”

The entire building process lasted from May through December 2016, and included the actual conceptualization, 3D printing (which was outsourced), and construction. The entire project was detailed on Pennings’s website and Reddit's DIY page.

With all of the motors, circuitry, and hardware that went into it, Pennings’s machine is likely too ambitious of a task for the average candy aficionado. So until a machine like this hits the open market, you're probably stuck buying bags of single-colored M&M’s in bulk online or sorting all of the candy out yourself the old fashioned way.

To see Pennings’s machine in action, check out the video below:

[h/t Refinery 29]

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