Boing Boing 

Watch ants weirdly circle an iPhone when it rings

These ants circle an iPhone like it's the Ka'aba in Mecca.

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BBC TV host is very excited about this Blue Whale that just showed up

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“I can see it now! The largest ever known to have lived on our planet, larger than any of the dinosaurs, a creature we hunted so much that 99% of its numbers disappeared is right here, right now, live!”

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New species of Crayfish named after Edward Snowden

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Scientists named this newly-identified species of Indonesian crayfish Cherax snowden, after Edward Snowden.

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Why magenta doesn't appear in the rainbow

Steve Mould's colored flashlights (sometimes called "coloured torches" in distant lands) are useful props in this excellent 5-minute lecture on color mixing. I learned that magenta is not a color. Rather, it is the absence of green.

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WATCH: You probably need more cute sea slugs in your life

Jorunna are colorful sea slugs with what appear to be a puffy tail and rabbit ears (actually rhinophores). They have many variations in color and markings.

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We've evolved to disbelieve evolution


Experimental psychologists find that humans prefer explanations for events that have certainty and a sense of purpose over undirected randomness.

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Parasite playing cards

The lucky attendees at this year's meeting of the American Societe of Parasitologists got a gorgeous deck of parasite-themed playing cards into their conference bags.

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Culturing the critters on an 8-year-old's hand


Tasha Sturm, a lab tech, sampled her 8 year old son's hand when he came in from playing outside in an agar medium, then cultured the microbes that came off in the dish.

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What it's like to share consciousness with an octopus


Marine biologist/US police brutality survivor/science fiction writer Peter Watts, in a brilliant vignette that, I hope, will be part of a novel someday:

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Mind-controlling parasites (and the parasites that infect them)

A great, full-body-squick-inducing article in National Geographic provides an overview of the current research on parasites that use a combination of techniques to control their hosts' behavior, making them sacrifice themselves for the sake of the parasites and their offspring.

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Whale vaginas are amazing


Mammal penises, including those of cetaceans, are pretty easy to find, while vaginas are more difficult to examine; historically, accounts of animal reproduction have emphasized the features of penises and theories of sperm competition, but a burgeoning scientific emphasis on whale vaginas is revealing structures and strategies that are amazing and wonderful.

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Aloha shirt featuring critters from Ernst Haeckel's Kunstformen der Natur


The 19th century German biologist's seminal illustrations of weird sea-life have been adapted for a gorgeous Betabrand cabana shirt.

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The woman with a nose on her back

There are some pretty freakish, but well-substantiated, reports this week that demonstrate just how much we still have to learn about stem cells and how they work (and don't work).

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Solid gold DNA-strand rings


Zanders Creations' solid 18k gold DNA Strand Ring starts at $750 and is available in four colors. The image is a computer render, and the Arizona-based team that makes the rings consists of a 3D artist and a jeweler who collaborate on some very beautiful pieces.

Nudibranch pancakes


Every week, a new delight from Pancake Master Nathan "Saipancakes" Shields: this week, An assortment of Pacific coast nudibranchs. (previously)

Kickstarting an augmented reality, artificial lifeform in a kids' picture-book

Wagner James Au sez, "Created by virtual world/avatar pioneer Jeffrey Ventrella, Wiglets are self-animated, augmented reality creatures for mobile devices powered by an open source AI system, and have genomes that are stored in the cloud along with their geo-locations. 'This means they can exist in specific locations in the real world,' Jeffrey explains. The overall goal with Wiglets is to encourage kids to find/play with their creatures in the natural world."

$65 gets you the book and a virtual Wiglet.

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