Friday, August 8, 2014

The Friday Five

Highlighting some of the coolest science news we’ve seen lately.

1. Some scientists have claimed that only 8.2% of your DNA is functional. Still, that is better than Congress. Anyone else think that this is going to turn out to rival the myth that we only use 10% ofour brain?

"I'm not so sure about this whole 8.2% of your DNA is functional thing. Trust me, I'm now using 100% of my brain."

2. There’s been a video floating around (see below) needlessly causing a lot of people to give up their beloved ice cream sandwiches. Well, just “chill” out. Here is a post that explains the chemistry that makes these treats so stable, even when left out in the sun. You may resume your ice cream sandwich consumption – you’re welcome.

3. Ever wonder what your stomach does to a cheeseburger? Kind of like what the sun does to that ice cream sandwich. Sing with me as you watch the video, "I'm loving' it!"

4. Our own Mark Lasbury recently addressed the question, “How small can life possibly get?”. Check out his fascinating analysis at his blog, “As Many Exceptions As Rules”.

5. We round out this Friday’s Five with a “sweet” story. Most of you probably don’t remember how you reacted the first time you tried chocolate because you experienced it at a young age. Behold the reaction of these cocoa farmers tasting chocolate for the first time.

Science quote of the week:
“For me, it is far better to grasp the Universe as it really is than to persist in delusion, however satisfying and reassuring.” –Carl Sagan

Contributed by:  Bill Sullivan

Follow Bill on Twitter: @wjsullivan

Rands, C., Meader, S., Ponting, C., & Lunter, G. (2014). 8.2% of the Human Genome Is Constrained: Variation in Rates of Turnover across Functional Element Classes in the Human Lineage PLoS Genetics, 10 (7) DOI: 10.1371/journal.pgen.1004525

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