Scientists come close to making a real invisibility cloak. If you have always wanted an invisibility cloak like Harry Potter’s science is one step closer to making you one.Recently scientists were able to use ultra fine metamaterials combined with silk to make a square of fabric that hid a seven inch rod from terahertz waves. Scientists are hopeful that will be able to use this discovery as a basis to someday create a fabric that will hide whatever is underneath from visible light as well as from terahertz rays. Some researchers want to go even further than that and use metamaterials implanted into raw silk fused into the body to allow scientists and doctors to see inside tissue and organs for medical research and diagnostics.
If you spend any time on sites like Facebook, Reddit, or Pinterest you have probably seen dozens of images of an adorably grumpy cat face with funny captions. That cat, named Tarder Sauce, is one of the most recognizable memes to ever hit the Internet. In just a few months Tarder Sauce, nicknamed Grumpy Cat, has become the face of the Internet. In what may be the successful viral story ever Grumpy Cat has taken over the Internet and now does a few public appearances, has a book in the works, and has become a licensed image sold on everything from clothing to greeting cards.
Cats are wildly popular online. Sites like I Can Has Cheezburger have made cute pictures and videos of cats a staple of online entertainment. They say that the Internet is made of cats, which isn’t really a surprise if you think about it. Many hard core Internet buffs are very catlike. They prefer to eat and sleep at odd hours, spend hours everyday looking at nothing, and prefer their human interactions to be limited and on their own terms. Tarder Sauce’s grumpy appearance is the perfect vehicle for memes of all kinds to make people laugh or think. Internet users love an underdog, or an undercat in this case. Grumpy Cat’s odd appearance which might make some people shun the cat is exactly what made Internet users fall in love with her.
While the cat’s uniquely grumpy expression may seem Photoshopped it is real. Tarder Sauce is a real cat who was born with feline dwarfism and a severe underbite. Those traits give the cat a permanent grumpy appearance. Tarder Sauce and her brother Pokey both suffer from genetic abnormalities that make them undersized and give them their unique looks. Despite her appearance Tarder Sauce is a relatively healthy cat. And her owners say that while she always looks grumpy she in fact is a very happy and easy going cat.
The Grumpy Cat phenomenon started when one of her owners posted a picture of Tarder Sauce on the popular site Reddit. Tarder Sauce was born in April 2012, and in September 2012 the first picture of her was posted. Reddit users instantly were intrigued by the permanently grumpy expression and dubbed her Grumpy Cat. Then the memes started rolling in and took off like wildfire. While most viral stories and images die down after a month or so Grumpy Cat love is still going strong. Recently Tarder Sauce was a feature celebrity at the mammoth SXSW festival in Texas and was one of the biggest draws of the festival. People waited for hours, including celebrities, in lines that stretched more than three blocks to get the chance to have a picture taken with Grumpy Cat.
Animal rights activists raised concerns that Tarder Sauce is being treated badly by being forced to make public appearances and photographed constantly but her owners say that public appearances are limited and that they do not allow others to handle her. She also has photo sessions just once a week and only for a short time.
Have you ever had a nightmare about a monster fish? Well, it may be coming true. Monster goldfish have taken over the Internet and Lake Tahoe. Videos of people with enormous goldfish, ranging from six to eight inches long and weighing as much as four pounds, started to pop up on YouTube lately. But Forest Service workers who monitor Lake Tahoe have been aware of the problem for awhile. Part of their job is to keep an eye on the fragile ecosystem of the lake which can be impacted by other species of fish invading the lake. Lake Tahoe has been gradually warming and attracting warm water fish like rainbow trout and brown bullhead. But the most striking new species upsetting the balance of the lake are these giant goldfish.
It might seem like something out of a nightmare if you are swimming, boating, or fishing in the lake and suddenly see an enormous goldfish swimming near you. But this nightmare is real. It can be hard to imagine tiny goldfish predators but the large goldfish living in Lake Tahoe seem vaguely threatening because it is such an unfamiliar sight. The goldfish are not native to the area and yet are appearing with alarming frequency. These fish are not migrating though. They are deliberately being added to the lake and left to wreak havoc on the existing ecosystem.
The goldfish are believed to have been dumped in the lake by people who were emptying their home aquariums who didn’t want to kill their fish. But once the goldfish enter the warm waters of Lake Tahoe they feed on other species in the lake and their waste makes destructive algae grow faster. Forest Service workers strongly encourage people to find other homes for their fish. They spend a portion of their time removing the goldfish and other species of fish from the lake so that the ecosystem of the lake doesn’t collapse entirely. The popularity of the photos and videos of the fish concern Forest Service workers who are afraid that more and more people will dump goldfish in the lake deliberately to create these monster goldfish to star in more videos.
The appearance of the giant goldfish is a great illustration of how fragile the ecosystems of lakes and waterways can be. The animals who live in the lake are at the center of a system that provides for thousands of animals and thousands of animals. While it might be tempting to empty your home tank into the lake so that you can get some great fodder for YouTube it’s not worth the potential damage to the lake so if you really want to rehome your fish find another way to do it. Goldfish that were bred to be pets don’t belong out in the wild. Goldfish that are used for bait are also sometimes released into the lake and also contribute to the problem so when you’re done fishing take your bait with you.
Congress is getting closer to passing legislation that will require all Internet retailers that take in more than a million dollars of sales per year to pay sales tax. That tax will apply no matter what state the retailer is actually located in. Internet shopping is not totally untaxed now, since retailers have to pay tax in the state in which they file taxes, but the rate of the tax that they pay may go up as a result of Federal legislation. Brick and mortar retailers say that requiring Internet stores to pay tax will level the playing field a little since they are required to pay taxes. In an economy that is still struggling many brick and mortar businesses are looking for any advantage they can get to bring in more customers and keep current customers from going online to buy items.
Brick and mortar stores that sell primarily high cost items like electronics and cell phones say that their businesses are being hurt by customers who come into the stores to see products they are interested in and then go online to buy them after they have had the chance to see the item in person. Some retailers think that if online businesses are required to pay sales tax people will think twice about buying high ticket items online.
But industry analysts say that businesses are wrong in their assumption that making Internet retailers pay a borderless tax will help their business. They say that in fact those same brick and mortar stores are going to end up hurting even more if a borderless tax is imposed. That’s because right now mega online retailers like Amazon deliberately stay out of certain states because of the rate of tax they would have to pay in that state. If they don’t have the incentive of a higher tax rate to stay out of a certain state they are free to open large warehouses in every state stocked with merchandise that can be quickly distributed. That will streamline the processing and shipping time and make it even more convenient for customers to shop online. Large retailers like Walmart and Amazon are also starting to use lockers to deliver merchandise on the same day that an order is placed. Customers can go to select 24 hour stores like 7-11 and enter a special passcode to open a locker and get their merchandise when it’s convenient for them.
Internet sales tax may be good for consumers who are price savvy but the inevitable closing of brick and mortar stores that would accompany it would hurt the economy even more in the long run. Already stores are stocking fewer and fewer items to keep costs down, which drives more people to shop online where they have more selection. If Internet sales tax becomes a reality and customers can order items online and pick them up or have them delivered the same day it could mean the end of many brick and mortar stores.
I tried not to watch it, but I watched King Of The Nerds. It’s taken many years but the reality TV genre is finally noticing geeks. Shows like Syfy’s “Face Off” and the new TBS show “King of the Nerds” are made to appeal to nerds and geeks all over the world. High ratings for both shows have proven to TV execs that the nerd market is a strong one. Face Off is now entering its fifth season and is a strong ratings generator for Syfy. While Face Off is focused specifically on special effects makeup and design TBS’s show King of the Nerds takes a broader look at the many facets of geek culture. King of the Nerds, which first aired in January of 2013, is the first reality competition produced by the network.
TBS originally ordered the show based on the ratings that reruns of the popular nerd hit The Big Bang Theory. The show is hosted by Robert Carradine and Curtis Armstrong who are famous for playing the infamous nerds in the Revenge of the Nerds movie. The show had celebrity geek judges for each challenge like George Takei, Kevin Smith, and Cosplay queen Yaya Han. The contestants were divided into two teams and competed in weekly challenges that tested their knowledge of academics as well as geek culture. The team that won the challenge was safe from elimination, while two members of the losing team were sent to a Nerd Off where they competed to see who would be eliminated from the show. Season 1 was won by Celeste Anderson, a professional gamer. The show was a hit, bringing TBS high ratings and a lot of interest. The show was renewed for a second season.
One of the most interesting things about the show is that it brings together a mix of different type of nerds and showcases the many different types of geek culture. Some of the contestants were academic nerds like a neuroscience PhD student, an engineer who works at NASA, a mathematician and a geologist. Others had backgrounds in more cultural nerd pursuits like the two professional gamers, a hacker, and a fantasy writer. Other contestants included a super comic book fan and a video game designer. The challenges that they participated in were designed to test a wide range of knowledge and academic skills. Interestingly the more academically skilled nerds were among the first to be eliminated while one of the professional gamers was the eventual winner.
Reviews of the show among nerds were mixed. Some people felt that the show was great because it raised awareness of the variety of pursuits that fall under the nerd umbrella. Others felt that the show played to the stereotypes of geeks and nerds and wasn’t really that entertaining. Like any first season show there are some kinks to be worked out but any show that makes it cool and profitable to be a nerd will ultimately help nerds and geeks everywhere.
I have come across a lot of Zombie Creators and other apps to transform your pic into a zombie. But AMC / The Walking Dead just released my favorite EVER!
I created this pic in about a minute. It is easy to line things up, different eyes, mouths (is that a word) accessories and style. Pretty awesome. Check it out at http://www.deadyourself.com/
Telltale has recently come up with an awesome Walking Dead video game and it feels exactly like you’re in the show itself. You start off playing the game without really knowing where things are going and wondering whether you want to keep playing or not. And then you find yourself wondering whether you are making the right decisions along the way and whether you are saying all of the right things or not. You find yourself wondering about the consequences of your actions, especially if you might have done things wrong. Soon after that, though, you will realize that there is no right or wrong in the Walking Dead video game.
In a nutshell, you play a condemned man named Lee who wants to make amends and you don’t have a say in the companions that you are left with. After all, you need them by your side just as much as they need you. Sometimes, you will need to make stupid compromises to keep the balance going in the group and at other times, you will need to make huge decisions for everybody. You will have to decide what is worth fighting about, as well, and decide whether it is important to tell somebody off or whether it would just be best to keep everybody happy.
Overall, this game makes a great attempt at leaving the traditional notion of video games. Where video games make players do exactly what they want them to in order to end up in the same place as other players, this game lets players make their own judgements, follow their own beliefs, and control their own destinies. Because of this, there isn’t any set ending to the game, but there is definitely an unforgettable journey along the way. In the end, you will get the answer that you deserve, depending on your personal morals and reasoning, and depending on how you approach and see things.
Of course, it goes without saying that some parts of the video game are still uncontrollable, but they are still set to make you feel like you are in complete control anyway.
Lee is generally a well-developed and solid character overall. However, he really isn’t anything more than the host body for your own actions and thoughts as you play the game. So, if you ever decide that you want to kill someone off for any reason whatsoever, you can do so. However, while you might do all of the thinking and the doing in the game, Telltale has created a good cast of different characters that are both decisive and driven – exactly the way that they are in The Walking Dead itself.
It also becomes quite obvious fairly soon that the zombies in The Walking Dead video game aren’t incidental. They all create the different circumstances that make you cow together with different people and fight things out in order to survive. They basically create the pressure that you need to play the game to begin with. So, if you hate zombies, then don’t be put off just yet. This zombie game has to do with a lot more than just zombies – that’s for sure!
I am extremely excited about 2013 . I normally get excited around the beginning of the year. It is a great opportunitiy to reflect back on the year and determine how to be better.
This has been a bad year for many people. The weather around the country has been devisating. Many families lost their homes. The name Sandy will forever remind people of the horrible disasters of 2012. My heart goes out to those affected.
2013 will be better for all. This will be the year! There are major plans for the sites that I manage including this site. I plan on adding features that YOU would like to see. I hope that you are as optimistic and excited about the new year as I am.
As a big Halloween fan, I notice that there are a lot of urban legends about Halloween. Every year as it gets closer to Halloween the news and Internet is buzzing with stories about kids who have poisoned by Halloween candy. The reminders to parents to check their children’s Halloween candy before allowing them to eat it are everywhere. Emergency rooms gear up for an influx of people streaming in on Halloween night wanting tests done on the candy that their kids have collected from Trick or Treating to be sure it’s safe for them to eat. But are those fears based in reality?
Stories about children being poisoned by chemicals or actual poisons in their Halloween candy go back for decades but many of them are just made up tales designed to frighten children and their parents. In the 1950s when Trick or Treating became the popular Halloween event that it is today it was more common for people to give out homemade treats like popcorn balls, cookies, or taffy apples instead of pre-packaged candy. But did you know that the stories of kids being poisoned by Halloween candy are really urban legends? It’s true. The truth is that only two people have died from eating poisoned Halloween candy in recorded history. And both of those deaths were due to the actions of people who knew the victims. There has never been a recorded death from a child eating a random poisoned piece of Halloween candy.
One of the two confirmed Halloween candy deaths was in 1974 when a boy named Marc O’Bryan died after eating Pixie Stix laced with cyanide. After his death police investigated and it was discovered that no one in the neighborhood where Marc had Trick or Treated was giving out Pixie Stix for Halloween. After further investigation the police found that it was Marc’s own father who had laced some of the candy with cyanide and slipped it into Marc’s Trick or Treat candy. He obviously assumed that no one would figure out that he had given Marc the candy but he was wrong. The motive for the murder was said to be money. Marc’s father had taken out a large life insurance policy on Marc and wanted to collect.
The other confirmed death is Kevin Toston, a five year old boy who died in 1970. When his family brought him to the hospital they told doctors that he collapsed after eating Halloween candy. He died of a heroin overdose. But after some investigation police found that Kevin had accidentally gotten into a drug stash in the home and had taken heroin that he found in the stash. The family put some of the heroin on Kevin’s Halloween candy to make it appear as if a stranger had poisoned the candy.
The common theme in all the urban legends about children dying as a result of poisoned candy is that random poisonings are carried out by deranged strangers but the reality is that in every case of a child becoming sick or dying from Halloween candy it was a relative to put the poison in the candy.