Monthly Archives: February 2011

Anticipating the fickle nature of the queen bee

Occasionally, queen bees decide to up and leave their hives. When they do this, they take much of their hive’s population with them. Which is a big bummer for beekeepers.

Some researchers have found a way to use an accelerometer — like one found in the iPhone — to figure out when a queen bee might decide to take off.

“The method relies on the computer learning the language of the buzzing hives,” says Bencsik. The team found several signals in the vibrations – for instance, vibrations peak at sunrise – which could be used to monitor the health of a colony. Crucially, about 10 days before swarming, the hives produced a distinct vibration.

If a beekeeper anticipates the queen’s departure, he can set up another well-positioned hive for her to move in to.

From Discoblog.

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Snowman army

 Snowman army

From Super Punch.

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Crowds will taunt suicidal people to their deaths

In Seattle in 2001, a 26-year-old woman who had recently ended a relationship held up traffic for a little too long as she considered the implications of leaping to her death. As motorists began to back-up on the bridge and become irate, they started yelling “Jump, bitch, jump!” until she did.

Cases like this aren’t unusual.

When people feel anonymous and fade into a larger group, they are capable of doing things that would normally horrify them. You Are Not So Smart explores deindividuation.

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Gorilla vs. tiny kangaroo

 Gorilla vs. tiny kangaroo

By João Lauro Fonte, via Ffffound.

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The awful signs of the Wisconsin protests

 The awful signs of the Wisconsin protests

Check it out! Liberals are just as good as Tea Partiers at being dumb and hateful. See this and more.

And for fun, let us all reminisce about Wisconsin’s gubernatorial race and Scott Walker’s 68-page jobs plan.

Via Daily Intel.

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Vatican says Pope Benedict is not an organ donor

Pope Benedict became an organ donor in the seventies. As soon as he became pope, he was no longer a donor. Because the Catholic church owns his body now.

Polish Archbishop Zygmunt Zimowski, head of the Vatican’s health office, told La Repubblica newspaper that it was understandable that a pope’s body remains intact because it belongs to the entire church.

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My dad, the mentalist

 My dad, the mentalist

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The Kimjongilia

The Kimjongilia is a red flower designed to bloom every year on Kim Jong-il’s birthday.

 The Kimjongilia

There is also a Kimilsungia, which is named after his father.

Via The Morning News.

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Volkswagen sidecar

 Volkswagen sidecar

From Super Punch.

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Clip-a-saurus

 Clip a saurus

From Fuck Yeah Albuquerque.

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