Category: Answers With Joe

Why Are Insects Disappearing?

All around the world, insect species are dying at alarming rates. It’e being called the Insect apocalypse, and aA new study looks at why this is happening, what can be done about it, and what would happen if the trend continues.

Does Your Mind Create The Universe?

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In 2005, Robert Lanza introduced the theory of Biocentrism to the world. Using quantum mechanics and tests like the double-slit experiment, he argues that consciousness creates the universe and not the other way around

Pilot Wave Theory: Classical Physics At The Quantum Level

Since the famed Solvay Conference of 1927, the accepted explanation of quantum physics has revolved around the Copenhagen interpretation, which states that quantum particles exist in probability states until they are measured.

But there is another interpretation of the experimental results. One that doesn’t rely on waveforms or probability states – Pilot Wave Theory.

How Technology Destroyed The Truth

The promise of the internet was that if we connect the world and give everyone a voice, we could move forward as one. It didn’t turn out that way.

The way we consume information has changed drastically over the years.

For the majority of modern history, newspapers were the arbiter of truth, and people read the newspaper once a day and then talked about the issues with friends, family, and coworkers.

When radio came around, the news was delivered 2-3 times a day, by distinguished and trusted broadcasters like Edward R. Murrow that delivered the news right down the middle.

Broadcast TV increased the amount of news to 3-4 times a day, but still news was just something people ingested in between other forms of entertainment. And different sides of the news were presented evenly thanks to the Fairness Doctrine.

But with cable TV and the first cable news network, CNN, all that changed. Then news became the entertainment and more cable news outlets like Fox News, MSNBC, Headline News, and CNBC split into different ideological camps.

But with the rise of social media, the news became an all-day every day feast, and worst of all, it removed the gatekeepers. Meaning anybody with any viewpoint could get their message heard.

This was supposed to be a good thing. But it has proven to divide us even further and be exploited by troll farms and moneyed interests.

Even more upsetting is this is happening at a time when we need together on the same page to combat various existential threats.

The post-truth era could be one of the contributors to the downfall of humanity if we’re not careful.

Did The US Accidentally Blast A Manhole Cover Into Space?

In 1957, the United States began testing nuclear weapons underground in the desert outside of Las Vegas, Nevada as part of Operation Plumbbob. One underground test, Pascal B, may have put the first manmade object into space.

Robert R. Brownlee engineered the Pascal A underground test to measure the amount of fallout that would occur from underground nuclear explosions. It involved digging a 485 foot shaft into the ground and capping it with a heavy steel plate.

The explosion blew the steel plate off the ground and caused Brownlee to wonder how fast it propelled the object, so he set up a second nuclear test, Pascal B, to measure the speed of the steel cap.

The high-speed camera only recorded the plate in one frame, which led Brownlee to conclude that it must have been traveling at more than 125,000 miles per hour, or 5 times the escape velocity of Earth. The plate was never found, and this has led many to believe it was jettisoned out into space.

If this is true, the steel plate from Pascal B beat Sputnik to space by 2 months and would be the fastest human-made object of all time.

There are many who believe this couldn’t possibly be true though because at that speed the plate would have vaporized in the atmosphere just like a meteor or satellite re-entering the atmosphere at orbital velocity. So the mystery of Pascal B carries on.

Bigelow Aerospace Is Building The World’s First Space Hotel

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Robert Bigelow became a billionaire as the owner of Budget Suites of America hotels. But now he wants to build hotels in space. And his company Bigelow Aerospace is getting closer with their inflatable habitats.

Robert Bigelow grew up in Las Vegas in the 1950s, and saw the nuclear testing that took place nearby. This spurred a love of science that he carries with him to this day.

He vowed to one day spend $500 million to create the first commercial space station, and established Bigelow Aerospace in 2000.

Their focus would be on inflatable habitats, a technology that NASA developed while working on the Transhab module for the International Space Station that was eventually cancelled. Bigelow Aerospace bought NASA’s patents and began working on their own versions.

The first program, GenesisI1 and Genesis II, were unmanned inflatable habitats that tested the technology. The habitats were functional for 2 and a half years and performed well enough that NASA contacted Bigelow to test an inflatable module on the ISS.

Bigelow created BEAM – the Bigelow Experimental Activity Module, which was installed on the ISS in 2016. It has performed perfectly, getting its original 2-year mission expanded beyond 2020, and has shown to stand up to micrometeorite impacts and radiation as well as the rest of the ISS.

Bigelow’s next step is to launch the B330, a 300 cubic meter inflatable habitat that is the centerpiece of their plans. Bigelow wants to use multiple B330s to create commercial space stations in orbit. B330s may even be used as habitats on the moon.

Beyond that, Bigelow plans to build the B2100, a massive habitat with 2 and a half times more volume than the ISS. These would be the first space hotels.

Living Zombies: People Living Without A Heart

20 people die every day waiting for a heart transplant. Luckily science has found a way to keep people alive without a heart while waiting for a new one. Here’s everything you need to know about artificial hearts.

The first artificial heart was received by Barney Clark in 1982. He only survived for 112 days, but subsequent patients lived longer and longer and now go years on a machine.

The Syncardia Total Artificial Heart is the go-to artificial heart these days. It replaces the left and right ventricles with two bifurcated bladders through which fluid is pumped in and out, forcing the blood up into the atriums like a normal heartbeat.

The fluid is piped into the body through tubes that protrude from the abdomen that lead to a backpack. The backpack carries the pump device and the batteries that power it. Each battery lasts 6 hours.

Another, simpler device is called the Left Ventricular Assist Device, this is a continuously flowing pump that leads blood out of the left ventricle directly into the aorta, meaning people with this device have no pulse.

The Oort Cloud: The Solar System’s Disaster Factory

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5 People With SUPERHUMAN Abilities

They walk among us.

While movie-style superheroes are unfortunately just a fiction, there are in fact people with stunning superhuman abilities. Here are 5 of them.

1. Veronica Seider is a woman with superhuman vision.
She has the ability to recognize a person from a mile away, and can actually see individual pixels on the TV from across the room. Her eyesight is roughly the same as that of an eagle, which earned her the nickname the Eagle-Eyed Woman.

2. Daniel Tammet is a high-functioning autistic savant with a superhuman memory.
He is able to recite Pi to over 25,000 digits and speaks multiple languages. One of the secrets to his success is the fact that he has synesthesia, which means he can perceive numbers and words as colors, textures, and shapes.
Daniel’s TED talk:

https://bit.ly/2jXNejK

3. Rajmohan Nair has the superhuman ability to conduct electricity.
While most people would die at even a tenth of an amp of current flowing through them, Nair can take several amps at a time, enough to power a lightbulb or power tools. Do not try this at home.

https://bit.ly/2A30eSb

4. Joy Milne has a superhuman sense of smell.
For reasons that nobody seems to understand, Joy Milne’s sense of smell is so acute, she can smell Parkinson’s disease. She smelled it on her husband 10 years before he showed any symptoms. Researchers are now trying to determine exactly what molecules she is smelling to help detect Parkinsons earlier and possibly save lives.

https://bit.ly/2HYkit9

https://bit.ly/2Gd30GV

5. Isao Machii has superhuman reaction speed.
A modern-day samurai, Machii holds 6 world records involving the katana, and can even split a BB that has been fired at him in mid-air while unsheathing his sword.

World Record: https://bit.ly/2UJgLQP
Pellet: https://bit.ly/1yv2hpX
Bean: https://bit.ly/2DXcNP4