Freak out on this fantastic hand illusion

And I thought the people with six fingers on one hand were impressive! Watch below.

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Brains of people with extra fingers could inspire new robotic control systems

One in 500 people are born with polydactyly, extra fingers or toes. Researchers at University of Freiburg in Germany, Imperial College London and Université de Lausanne / EPFL in Switzerland studied two people with well-formed usable sixth fingers between the thumb and first fingers on both hands to understand how their brains deal with the "extra workload" of controlling those digits. According to Imperial College bioengineer Etienne Burdet, high-resolution functional magnetic resonance imaging (fMRI) revealed that "the polydactyl individual's brains were well adapted to controlling extra workload, and even had dedicated areas for the extra fingers. It's amazing that the brain has the capacity to do this seemingly without borrowing resources from elsewhere." From Imperial College London:

Polydactyl participants also performed better at many tasks than their non-polydactyl counterparts. For instance, they were able to perform some tasks, like tying shoelaces, with only one hand, where two are usually needed... (See video above.)

The international team of authors say the findings might serve as blueprint for the developing artificial limbs and digits to expand our natural movement abilities. For example, giving a surgeon control over an extra robotic arm could enable them to operate without an assistant...

However, (lead author Carsten Mehring of Freiburg University) warned that people with robotic extra limbs may not achieve as good control as observed in the two polydactyl subjects. Any robotic digits or limbs wouldn’t have dedicated bone structure, muscles, tendons or nerves.

In addition, subjects would need to learn to use extra fingers or limbs, much like how an amputee learns how to use a prosthetic arm.

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Vermont man installs massive middle finger sculpture on lawn

Several weeks ago, Ted Pilkey of Westford, Vermont installed this massive wooden middle finger sculpture on his lawn atop a 16-foot-pole. From Boston.com:

“I’m not trying to cause hate and animosity to the people who live in that town, because there’s very good people in that town,” the 54-year-old Westford native says of his fellow residents in the 2,000-person town. “All the people are very good people.”

With the exception, Pelkey says, of the Westford Selectboard, Development Review Board, and other town leaders, who have blocked his efforts to get a permit to build the 8,000-square-foot garage, so he could move his truck repair and monofilament recycling businesses in nearby Swanton to his own property.

Officials say Pelkey’s applications have fallen short of the town’s standards, but he thinks they’re biased against him...

Although the structure is visible from a state highway, it is outside of the State Right of Way and not within our jurisdiction,” Jacqui DeMen, a spokeswoman for the agency, told Boston.com in an email. “The structure does not meet the statutory definition of ‘sign’ and thus can’t be regulated under the Vermont Billboard Law.”

Perhaps Pelkey was inspired by a similar sculpture outside the Italian stock exchange in Milan.

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(FAKE) The most intense street fight you will ever see

UPDATE: Alas, it's funny but it's fake.

Watch below. A triumphant Manhattan moment. I laughed, I cried, it became a part of me. I'm going to see it again and again and again and again and again.

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Get ready to feel something strange while watching Finger Machines

Finger Machines will likely give viewers a visceral reaction by design. That reaction will vary greatly, from joy to arousal to disgust, and maybe all of the above. It's totally safe for work, but it may be better to wait till you're able to watch away from passersby who might get the wrong impression from a quick glance. Read the rest

Watch this hypnotic kaleidoscope of fingers

Finger choreography by fingertut masters Xtrap Dance Crew.

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Lohan's middle finger issues statement

Behold! Lindsay Lohan's all-too-illustrative message to the judge who sentenced her to 90 days inside. [USA Today] Read the rest