November 21, 2014

Factual, funny and freakish, all on one Friday

by Janie Jones

Now, if you are the kind of person who is a bit put out having to follow a link in a blog post to understand what the author is posting about, I will apologize now.

But, if you know nothing about Naked Mole Rats, and/or you are looking for something that will make you laugh and shudder all at once, then you will not regret following this link and spending 3 minutes watching this highly informative video:

True facts about Naked Mole Rats

My lab partner and I had a bunch of time to kill Wednesday night while we waited for our Drosophila cells to incubate and he and I swapped funny websites.  He got The Oatmeal, and I got True facts about Naked Mole Rats.  A thoroughly equitable exchange, in my opinion.

And, here’s a spoiler alert:   No, something that ugly can’t be food.

Happy Friday

November 20, 2014

Thursday Quote Du Jour # 18

by Janie Jones

“Nothing in life is to be feared; it is only to be understood.”

Marie Curie

November 18, 2014

Tuesday Titters: Do you love The Oatmeal as much as I do?

by Janie Jones

Don’t you just love The Oatmeal?  I have been enjoying them on the internet, but I think I have to get one of their books, you know, so I’ll still have access after the zombie apocalypse.  In the mean time, I’ll share one of my favorites with you:

The water on our planet is very, very old.

The water we have now is the same water that existed hundred of millions of years ago.

This means that every time I drank

or bathed

or wept

it was all dinosaur pee.

This is from The Oatmeal website.  Click here to see it full The Oatmeal glory.

November 17, 2014

Whoops! I missed Monday

by Janie Jones

Howdy, ya’ll.

Monday kinda got away from me.  I had a test this morning, and I have two papers to write plus keeping up with the regular stuff.  Finals approacheth.  I’ll try to post as usual, but there may be interruptions in service.


I’m tired now.  I’m going to bed.

November 14, 2014

Happy Dogs

by Janie Jones

It’s Friday, I have a test and a lot to do today and have been to busy to schedule a post in advance.  So, you get random dog pictures.  But, everyone loves dog pictures, right?

november 2014 019

Rupert, chillin’ like a villain in his dapper doggy sweater on the beach.

november 2014 020

Vera loving every minute.

November 13, 2014

Random fact: Now hear this

by Janie Jones

So we are studying waves now in physics.  Which conceptually is pretty cool.

Sound is actually caused by the wave motion of atoms through a medium, such as air, water, or even wood.  Sound waves are measured in Hertz (Hz) which is the number of cycles the wave makes in a second.  The human ear can hear sound waves in the 20-20,000 Hz range.

The wave motion enters our ear canal and vibrates the tympanic membrane (ear drum), triggering a chain reaction involving the passage of the vibration through the bones in the ear to the fluids in the cochlea.  There the waves come in contact with sensory cells that transfer the sound waves to electrical impulses which then travel to our brain and are interpreted as the sounds we “hear.”

“Sound” (bad pun intended) kinda complicated?  Well, no one ever said that biology wasn’t an amazing feat of engineering.

Many folks have perhaps heard of ultrasonic sound, which is above the upper limit of human detection.  Ultrasound waves are used in the ultrasound machines that allow doctors to see inside a patient’s body, most notably in ultrasound images of the developing fetus, but also are used to shatter kidney stones so that they can be passed “naturally,” and avoid surgery.  Some people have heard of “dog whistles” which emit sounds humans can’t hear in the ultrasonic range.

What is less likely known, is that there are many animals that hear sounds in the infrasonic range, or the sounds below the threshold of human hearing.  Whales, elephants, some birds, some fish, and octopi and squid all can hear infrasonic sounds.  What’s more, elephants and whales are known to communicate with each other using infrasonic sound.

Well, now, that was random and interesting, wasn’t it?

Try listening to a physics lecture on the subject, it just might make your ears “hertz.”


November 12, 2014

Spammers are curious critters

by Janie Jones

So I was emptying the ol’ spam queue and noticed something strange, besides the Mad-Libs-esque grammar and senseless sentences (like anyone would think that they were legitimate comments!).  Apparently a post from June of 2011 was very popular with the spammers over the last two weeks.  I got 11 spam comments on my post Typhoon Rupert* or Janie slowly succumbing to cabin fever.

Is it the fudge masquerading as dog poop?  What drew not one, not two, but 11 spammers to this old post?

I will never understand spammers.