Editor's Picks: Invisible Sharks, Dinos with Big Horns, and More
If you only have time to read five stories this week, let them be
Not only did Mesoamericans use natural latex to create rubber, they
figured out how to manufacture different kinds of rubber for different
purposes. Uh, 3,500 years before modern processes were
Natural latex comes from a tree that grows in Mesoamerica (roughly
Mexico down to Nicaragua). When it's mixed with the juice of morning
glories, Mesoamericans discovered, they could make it as stretchy or
bouncy as they wanted.
A 50-50 latex/morning glory blend produced maximum bounciness,
perfect for rubber balls. Pure latex worked best for rubber bands and
adhesives. A three-to-one mix of latex to morning glory created the
most durable rubber, perfect for sandals.
4. Record-Sized Dino Horns
Why did dinosaurs accessorize so largely? That's what I want to
A newly found rhino-sized dino had horns that were 4 feet long. The
wonderfully-named Coahuilaceratops magnacuerna, or "great
horned horny face," was extra horny, with a small one on its nose in
addition to the two honkers above its eyes.
The dinosaur probably used its huge horns to attract the ladies and
fight off the competition.
In the bad timing category, I choose hurricane season and oil
spills. A busy hurricane season is predicted, and storms could hit the
Gulf like an immersion blender, mixing the oil down hundreds of meters
and scattering oil three sheets to the wind.
Experts have seen tropical storms move intact globs of oil many
hundreds of miles. They expect the same to happen if hurricanes churn
through the Gulf oil spill, possibly carrying oil as far north as Cape
4. Florida Coast: Hot Spot for Shark Attacks
We aim to be helpful here at Discovery News, so here's some news you
can surely use.
Twenty-one percent of shark attacks in the world happen along a
47-mile strip of land in Volusia County, Fla. Maybe don't go swimming
But if you must, don't splash around, wear a black-and-white suit,
or swim on a Sunday, among other things.
It's just one of the creepiest things I've ever heard. A British
researcher managed to introduce a virus into a tiny computer chip in
his body, which THEN infected a computer outside his body with the same
What's creepy about it? 1. He's micro-chipped. 2. A totally
human-made virus can pass into a person and back out again. 3. He's
I agree that it's time I came into the now. And the researcher, Mark
Gasson from the University of Reading in the U.K., said: "By infecting
my own implant with a computer virus we have demonstrated how advanced
these technologies are becoming and also had a glimpse at the problems
Those were the top five stories I liked most. Now here are the most
popular articles of the past seven days, according to your
Mr. Costner is promoting a machine that uses centrifugal forces to
help clean up oil spills. Is it legit? Yep, it's legit. Just kind of
I, for one, am very happy to hear this. All we have to do to escape
our world, once it's, you know, dead, is to be shot out of our galaxy
by the gravitational sling of a black hole! Wait: How does that work,
We all know it's better to look good than to feel good. And this
beautiful supernova surely knows the meaning of that, since it ripped
apart 5,000 years ago.
Ah Cleopatra, forever evoking beauty and power. Divers are finally
starting to excavate her sunken palace, and coming up with all sorts of
stunning artifacts from around 30 B.C.
As if they weren't scary enough, sharks can be even super-sneakier
than we thought. Some species can emit light, creating an optical illusion that makes them invisible to other creatures.