Yes, they're medieval; no, they're not instruments of torture (or dentistry). The... things at left are from Epact, "an electronic catalogue of medieval and renaissance scientific instruments from four European museums: the Museum of the History of Science, Oxford, the Istituto e Museo di Storia della Scienza, Florence, the British Museum, London, and the Museum Boerhaave, Leiden." Since I don't often get to Leiden, it's nice to know I can look at all the gadgets and gizmos aplenty from the comfort of my... READ ON
Ain't It Cool News has the perfect gift for your local grinch and/or zombie fan:
"This is a post-apocalyptic tale where zombies and mutant hordes run rampant and the violence soon reaches the North Pole, resulting in the death of Mrs. Claus.
Santa slips into an alcoholic depression and tries to kill himself, only to find that he is immortal as long as one single child still believes in him. So, he goes out into the wastelands to kill that little #*&*$% so he can finally off himself. Twisted, no? This... READ ON
I guess the free market is one way to find out. Gerald Fraller is selling his own soul on his personal website. How much you wanna bet he tried eBay first?
You donate funds for a chance to win my soul. Each dollar donated gets one entry in the drawing. The proceeds go towards helping me change my life. I am also going to use a large portion of the money to start a foundation to try and help people that are suffering from depression. ... In return for your donations and support, I offer the winner certain... READ ON
Michelle Collins is pointing her readers to a site that lets you impose your text on famous images, like the Einstein-at-the-chalkboard photo we blogged about all the way back in March. I'm more amused by the fake dictionary entries (and judging by Michelle's take, so is... READ ON
Really. Joe Kissell at Interesting Thing of the Day says:
"During World War II, German submarines, known as U-boats, kept very busy blowing up allied ships in the Atlantic—particularly those bound for Europe with supplies from North America. The U-boats' operations had to be planned carefully and were in part dependent on weather conditions. In order to get the best data about weather systems approaching from the west, the Nazis devised an elaborate network of 21 automated weather stations... READ ON
Oh, yeah, baby, gimme some of that sweet, sweet video action. No, really -- apparently, the reason for the incredible panda baby boom of the last two years is, um, porn:
"It works," Zhang Zhihe, a leading Chinese expert, said about showing uninitiated males DVDs of fellow pandas mating.
It is one of many techniques tried over the decades to get captive pandas -- notoriously poor breeders -- to do it, and do it right. The efforts to understand and simulate conditions for mating have paid off in China,... READ ON
In the proud tradition of our upcoming "Mental Floss Presents: Medical School in a Box," my husband and I are proud to present "What We Did With Our Thanksgiving Leftovers," or, "The Turkey Anatomy Lesson." For the sake of the squeamish, most of the pictures are after the... READ ON
Take that, Google Earth! See ya, Microsoft Virtual Earth! I think this web toy of sorts is much cooler -- it lets you view the earth from pretty much any satellite of your choosing (that's this morning's view from ECHOSTAR 8 at left). The satellite thing isn't your speed? The same website also lets you check out the planet from the vantage point of the Sun, the Moon, the night side of the Earth, "above any location on the planet specified by latitude, longitude and altitude," or above various cities around... READ ON
The Babystuff blog is apparently dedicated to bringing you all things baby. And we do mean all things:
"Measuring the amount of oxygen in the blood of a fetus during labor has no bearing on whether a Caesarean section is performed and does not affect the health of the newborn baby, researchers at UT Southwestern Medical Center have found in a multicenter study.
South County residents may soon be able to get Chili's baby-back ribs.
Once charged with aggravated battery to a child in a... READ ON
Perhaps, in retrospect, an 11-pound turkey was a bit excessive for two people. (We're just glad we didn't go with the 22-pounder.) We're so sick of picking over the carcass that we're tempted to use it as a football. Got any better ideas? This week's contest takes a turn for the practical: What the heck are we supposed to do with all this leftover turkey? Answers can be practical (recipes), charitable (make sandwiches; give them to the homeless), whimsical (dress it up as a snowman), inadvisable (feed it... READ ON
Barry Manilow did not write his hit "I Write the Songs."