geek science

5 ancient animals that aren’t dinosaurs

Up until today I thought that all animals that lives some few million years ago were dinosaurs, but that is nto the case. dinosaur means “terrible lizards” in Greek and we talk about those big creates that have lived on land, but about the other ones?

Hank Green, from SciShow, explains that the creatures that lived here a couple of million years ago were stranger that we’d thought: reptiles that looked like fish, but couldn’t breathe in water, reptiles that gave birth to live young, instead of laying eggs and animals the size or giraffes that could fly. Now, that’s something new.

Some examples of such animals, organized by their evolutionary relationships and not by how they looked. These were not dinosaurs, big lizards that had their legs under them instead of the legs spread our parallel to their thighs:
– Dimetrodon – mammal-like reptile that lives before the dinosaurs, our ancestors
– Pteurosaurs – reptiles that could fly, not dinosaurs. Examples – Pteranodon or Quatzalcuatlus, tall as a giraffe
– Plesiosaurs – aquatic animals and among them is the Pliosaur – they gave birth to live young
– Ichtyosaurs – they lived int he water, but they had to get out of the water to breathe, they also gave birth to live young
– Mosasaurs – in water, their closest descendants today are snakes

It seems that evolution follows a tedious path to… something. Alrighty, then 😀

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I f***ing love science – song from Hank Green, of SciShow

Hank Green, from SciShow, is also a singer and he has this bad ass song about science. Geek or nerd is the new cool, as it seems.

The song is catchy, sounds like a teenage style song, like the ones for high school boys and girls, but it great. i like the vibe, i like the tune, i love that it promotes science in such a fun way.

Way to go, Hank.

Via Open Culture.

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Watch out for meat eating plants!

SciShow tells us about meat eating plants that have amazed Darwin so much in 1860. Darwin studied a meat eating plant named Sundew or Drosera and called it insectivorous plant, but today we name them carnivorous plants.

There are over 600 carnivorous meant eating plant species out there and they all want to eat your fingers. Most of the plants eat insects by attracting them into an inner tube, then grabbing them and consuming their bodies. Auch. Some of the plants eat also small mammals. Try not to play with such plants, ok?

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SciShow: birds see the World in a whole lot more ways than humans do

I envy birds. they get to fly and now i found out that they can do many other things better than humans. Humans can be lousy at physical stuff, but do we have a punch on the entire world with out minds.

Getting back to the birds, they can see the magnetic field of Earth and also the UV light as they have 4 color receptor cells as opposed to humans who have only three: for red, blue, green. The fourth cone lets birds see in the UV spectrum.

Birds have also either a bigger fovea or more foveas on their retinas. A fovea is a spot on the retina that has the highest resolution and in which you the the clearest image. This way birds can have clearer images near and far or they can see the horizon always in a crisp way.

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Anti-vaxers got it wrong

Why? Because most of them do not understand how a vaccine works or how the vaccines protected millions of people from death. Of course, overly protective mothers (and along them a ton of bull-shit dads who would know better since you’d expect a man to be more logical in reasoning) have heard that vaccines are bad, that they create autism and other freaking stuff.

Vaccines work by injecting dead or inoffensive viruses or bacteria into your body. Yes, it infects you with dead microbes so that the immune system can analyze those dead microbes and then prepare protection accordingly.

Of course, vaccines do not work 100%, but they saved millions of people and have eradicated some diseases in parts of the world. But now diseases start to re-appear. Why? Because those very same mothers who refuse to vaccinate their kids are exposing everyone else to the illnesses.

Let’s learn about vaccines:

And here is a banner from Refutations of Anti-Vaccine Meme:

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Short history of the microscope – SciShow video

Hank Green takes us through a short history of the microscope which we have used for more than 400 years now. Many say that the inventors of the microscope are Hans and Zacharias Janssen who created this device in the late 1500s and were able to magnify objects up to 9x.

70 years later Robert Hooke was able to actually see tiny specs of life and then called them cells. Antony van Leeuwenhoek later on improved the microscope to magnify objects up to 270x and he could see: bacteria, which he called animalcules, sperm, red blood cells.

In the late 1800s we already had a microscope that was pretty similar to what we use today.

From that point on humans developed the next stages of the microscope: ultra-microscope, which in 1926 would let you check things smaller than the wavelength of the light; phase contrast microscope, which in the 50s let you study colorless/transparent materials; electron microscope, which lets you magnify images up to 10000000x; scanning tunneling microscope, which lets you see atoms.

Go lower than that and you get a Nobel prize 😀

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What does the Fox say? SciShow explains!

The Fox, the real Fox says a lot of things. The sounds the foxes make are many and you wouldn’t believe what they resemble. Gladly, Hank Green, from SciShow shows us some of these Fox-speeches.

Since the Fox is in the canide family you would expect it to bark. Not so much. The sounds from the video SciShow presented will, in fact, make you believe that you are in a jungle. Really 😀

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Laugh your a@# off with Hank Green, from SciShow

Did you had a bad day? Poor you. Watch the video from above. It will cheer you up more than, maybe, Mr. Bean would. SciShow Season 2 Outtakes, 2013 is one of the most amusing videos i have seen this year. And remember: no one needed to be hurt or insulted for this.

Have fun. SchiShow, I’m a big fan as always 😀

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SciShow about three big discoveries of 2013: Higgs Bosson, water on Mars and Neandertal genome

2013 was a great yer for the guys at SciShow, and for me too. I learned a lot, given the fact that I have another sci&tech blog in Romanian,

2013 brought us the Higgs Bosson, not such a big surprise after all, and then we found out that there is water on Mars and that it may have been habitable and, lastly, the scientists discovered an 400 000 years old human skeleton. It seems that it was a relative of Neandertal.

More info in the video from above.

What did 2013 brought you?

geek science

Poop transplant. Really? SciShow explains why!

Of course, WHY? Come on, I would never have thought that you would need some poop transplant from a healthy person to a ill person in order to restore the benign bacteria the second person is missing.

No, you can’t eat poop to restore your health.

Science is really strange sometime, but hey, if that’s what you have to do, oh well… do it 🙂 SciShow also tells us more about the origins of Buddha or cryptic cats, species of cats that are new, but are considered the same as others. Only gene comparison can reveal that they are different. YAY, science.

Repeat: no, you can’t eat poop to restore your health.