I have dug through the Internet this week and uncovered all this science/pop culture goodness. You can find the hundreds of links from previous weeks here.
It was a huge week for me. In an article on Scientific American, I used physics to try and save one of my favorite characters from Firefly. Nathan Fillion (Capt. Malcolm Reynolds) then said it was his favorite fanboy rant to date! His endorsement made the piece the most popular of the week on Scientific American. The piece was also featured in Wired, with a few more calculations and pictures.
I have marked my favorite links with a ∞. Enjoy.
∞ Saving Lives in Serenity: Can a Fanboy and Physics Change a Movie?
Drawing by Sara E. Mayhew
The White House’s response to a petition to build the Death Star is beyond perfect
The horror that is what the Jewel Wasp does to cockroaches
∞ What a great read: Awakening: The Dark Side of Anesthesia. Well written, riveting, good review of the science
Do you want to see the earth completely swallow a car? Of course you do
Vi Hart is a symmetry wizard. She can make “sphereflakes”
∞ I think Schwarzenegger makes a much better Darth Vader. Don’t you?
Hey, footage of a ridiculously close sweep of the Moon is pretty sweet
The winners of the 2012 Nat. Geo. photo contest are as you suspect: amazing
∞ This guy can *easily* steal just about anything off you
Animals with misleading names [Comic] “The horny toad only likes you as a friend.”
Sagan just blew my mind explaining the 4th dimension to me. Better explanation than others I’ve seen
“KILL NYE THE SCIENCE GUY”–This is what happens when your killstreak is too damn high.
DOLPHIN STAMPEDE! What more could you want?
I really enjoyed this piece in the Lancet, “Mangling the Dead.” Well written and macabre.
A video explaining why a chimp could lift 16 people over its head
∞ Amazing how effective inserting someone’s poop into your colon is…and we’re getting better at it.
If you take the first 100 billion decimals of pi in base 4 and graph it, you get this lovely bit of sci-art
What that study supposedly showing the “benefit” of some extra fat really says
“An antelope falls in a forest and there’s no one around to hear it. But there are plenty of things that will eat it.”
A poem about wind farms, fog, and climate change
Turns out that humanity won’t be obliterated in 2036. Yay!
How do you test an evolutionary hypothesis about wrinkled fingers? Soak people’s hands and have them grip marbles
Here lies…everyone | XKCD
This cardboard cockroach is the fastest robot in the world
The winners of Olympus’ “Bioscapes” competition are woah
It’s official: we’re on track for getting f***** by the climate
Sugar free gum may only help fight cavities by accident
A great concert from David Byrne and St. Vincent
∞ Brilliant–“Listen, it’s my God-given right to have the freedom to own a gorilla to protect myself“
Jon Stewart: Scapegoat Hunter
∞ Jon Stewart on gun control might be the best I’ve ever seen him
The Blessings of Atheism–NYT opinion
Mentally Ill Man Not In Mood to Gun Down Strangers, But Glad To Know That Option There If Needed
Someone should really shave this sheep. Artificial selection at work
Get your anatomy painted right on your skin to awesome effect
This is one hell of a magic trick
The greatest piece of art ever? Sagan riding a velociraptor wielding a lightsaber
Jeez, the showers in Canada sound really uncomfortable
A combination of “electro” and “execute,” someone is only “electrocuted” if they die. If they don’t, they were merely shocked.
∞ The zenith of cute–This jumping red panda may be the cutest GIF you see today
Watching how the CG effects in The Avengers was done was impressive
Woah. Freak Australian dust storm looks like the invading Independence Day aliens
“Point-blank range” does not mean “as close as possible,” but the range it takes to hit a target without aiming higher or lower than it.
The deleted scene in which Marty McFly worries that hitting on his mom could “screw him up permanently,” you know “gay”
I have changed my perspective on eating entirely. It’s so metal.
Career Spider Not Sure She’s Ready For 3,000 Children At This Point
I am stressed out today. Watching flowers bloom in glorious time-lapse helped
Good lord you didn’t want to have bladder stone surgery in the 1800s
This is a photo of a teen who grew a tumor on his eyeball which grew hair
You know you’re a badass spider when you eat snakes
∞ Love this blog dedicated to bad science figures
XKCD’s sick day
Huh. Many winding staircases were constructed to make it hard for invading swordsmen to use their weapons
A comic for Mass Effect fans
If Smaug were real, he’d have more money than anyone on Earth. Delightfully nerdy analysis
Now THIS is a photo of a shuttle launch
Almighty God tweets about how the Bible is like software
This really helped: The Tolkien Nerd’s Guide to The Hobbit
Artist turns real spider webs into beautiful art
Tweeps in this week’s linkfest: @chirurgeonsappr @sciam @jtotheizzoe @JohnRHutchinson @carlzimmer @DrJenGunter @edyong209