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Rediff.com  » News » WTF News! It's Weird, True and Funny

WTF News! It's Weird, True and Funny

May 09, 2014 09:04 IST

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Here's your weekly digest of the most Weird, True and Funny News from the across the globe.

We start off with this new advertisement for a Japanese sex shop of condoms that shows couples vacuum-sealed together.

The series of ads for Condomania features couples arranged into an empty futon bag, Huffington Post reported.

In a YouTube video showing how the ads were made, Japanese photographer "Photographer Hal" said that he chose this unique way of photographing the couples because he believes that human beings aren't completed if they're just by themselves.

Each couple can only be left inside the seal bag for 10 seconds, as air trapped within is extremely limited and space and oxygen is shared by the two inside.

The resulting photographs are expectedly claustrophobic, visually compelling, and totally bizarre.

The amount of constricted flesh is mind-blowing and reminiscent of a grocery store freezer section.

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Photographs: Courtesy Condomania

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This restaurant 'parachutes' meals to customers

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A Melbourne pop-up eatery has come up with a new way of delivering meals to their customers, by parachuting it.

Jafflechutes delivers their grilled cheese sandwiches to patrons waiting at the landing zone, which is marked with an X mark and hungry customers can pay in advance through PayPal, Metro.co.uk reported.

Adam Grant, who is one of the creators of the restaurant, claims they came up with the idea during a weekend in the countryside and their venture has raised enough money for them to potentially open a branch in New York as well.

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Bids reach $800,000 to woman, 28, who is auctioning virginity

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The bidding for the woman who is auctioning her virginity has reached $800,000 (Rs 4.8 crore).

The 28-year-old, who goes by the pseudonym Elizabeth Raine and is auctioning off a 12-hour date along with offering her virginity to the highest bidder, has received an 800,000 dollars bid just a day before bidding ends, the New York Daily News reported.

Raine, who describes herself as "5-foot-10, 130 pounds with blond hair and green eyes", recently added pictures showing her entire face on her website, which also features pictures of her in raunchy outfits.

The very public way that Raine is selling her purity, despite using an alias, has elicited both negative comments from netizens about what the future doctor is doing to her personal life and future career.

Some criticise her for selling her body, while others laud the virgin for not being bound by societal norms in getting what she believes is right for her.

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Photographs: Courtesy Elizabeth Raine's website

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Weak ankles could topple Michelangelo's 'David'

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Researchers have forewarned that Michelangelo's David could topple as the celebrated marble sculpture's knees are weak.

The sculpture, housed at a museum in Florence, is about 17 feet tall and weighs over 12,000 lbs avid has remained largely intact for more than 500 years, but tiny cracks in its ankles due to the poor quality marble used as well as its precarious pose could lead to its collapse.

Researchers have said that due to these structural problems, an earthquake or even vibrations from nearby construction could lead to the sculpture's collapse.

The study has been published in the Journal of Cultural Heritage.

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Photographs: Getty Images

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Meet world's first monster sized burger

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A 5ft 4inches tall tower sized burger filled with bacon buttes, sausages, steak pies, pizzas and spaghetti Bolognese has been named the world's biggest burger.

John Clarkson and his wife Corinne have created a super-sized beast that has 11 and a half pounds of beef with a cheeseburger in-between each layer and has been named 'Pie-scrapper', the Daily Star reported.

The tall tower of fast food, which contains 30,000 calories, stands on show at Mister Eater's Eating Emporium, in Preston and the owners are eyeing a Guinness World Record for the burger as they believe that nobody else has done it yet.

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Photographs: Courtesy Mister Eater

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'Sexy' flight attendant selfies latest trend on Instagram

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Flight attendants taking sexy selfies of themselves are the latest trend on Instagram.

In one photo, five beautiful Emirates Airlines attendants are seen in uniform draped over each other inside an aircraft in the style of a Vanity Fair spread, according to the New York Post.

Another selfie features an exotic-looking airline hostess posing in a crew locker room, wearing a pilot's hat and with her lips puckered, with the tagline "#flywithme."

Some flight attendants say the photos create camaraderie and allow them to keep up with one another.

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Photographs: Instagram

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A cup of coffee a day prevents blindness?

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Researchers have said that one cup of coffee could help prevent deteriorating eyesight and possible blindness from retinal degeneration due to glaucoma, aging and diabetes.

Raw coffee is, on average, just 1 percent caffeine, but it contains 7 to 9 percent chlorogenic acid, a strong antioxidant that prevents retinal degeneration in mice, according to the Cornell study.

The retina is a thin tissue layer on the inside, back wall of the eye with millions of light-sensitive cells and other nerve cells that receive and organize visual information.

It is also one of the most metabolically active tissues, demanding high levels of oxygen and making it prone to oxidative stress. The lack of oxygen and production of free radicals leads to tissue damage and loss of sight.

Chang Y. Lee, professor of food science and the study's senior author, said coffee is the most popular drink in the world, and we are understanding what benefit we can get from that.

The study has been published in the Journal of Agricultural and Food Chemistry.

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Iran 'bans' WhatsApp because Zuckerberg is 'a Jew'

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The Iranian censor board has reportedly banned WhatsApp because of Mark Zuckerberg, whom they have dubbed as an "American Zionist".

According to CNET and as reported by Israeli newspaper Haaretz, certain Iranian officials have pushed for the WhatsApp ban since the company was bought by Facebook in February.

Secretary of the Committee for Determining Criminal Web Content Abdolsamad Khorramabadi said that the reason for this is the adoption of WhatsApp by the Facebook founder Mark Zuckerberg, who is an American Zionist.

While the ban is backed by certain officials and censors, the move has been criticized by the Iranian government, which has become more moderate since the election of president Hassan Rouhani , the report added.

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Photographs: Getty Images

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Why we can't just eat one potato chip

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Researchers have shown that impulsive behaviour is a risk factor for food addiction.

The research was led by Boston University School of Medicine and conducted in collaboration with the University of Cambridge in the United Kingdom. It also points out the common mechanisms involved between drug and food addiction.

Research has shown that people with eating disorders and obesity are known to be more impulsive than healthy people. For example, they may be more likely to blurt out something that they later regret saying or to start an activity without thinking through the consequences. However, it was unclear whether the impulsivity existed before the dysfunctional eating behavior or if developed as a result of it.

BUSM researchers attempted to answer this question by measuring the inability to withhold an impulsive response in experimental models that were exposed to a diet high in sugar daily for one hour.

Models shown to be more impulsive rapidly developed binge eating, showing heightened cravings and the loss of control over the junk diet (measured as inability to properly evaluate the negative consequences associated with ingestion of the sugary diet). Conversely, models shown to be less impulsive demonstrated the ability to appropriately control impulsive behavior and did not show abnormal eating behavior when exposed to the sugary diet.

Interestingly, the impulsive models showed increased expression of a transcription factor called Delta-FosB in the nucleus accumbens, an area of the brain involved in reward evaluation and impulsive behavior, indicating a potential biological component to this behaviour.

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Now, charge your phone with your body!

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Researchers have created a device that generates electricity from our own body heat, and helps us to recharge electronic devices on the go.

The small and flexible generator, made from glass and fabric, can be used to power up heart monitors, smart glasses and other wearable tech, Daily Express reported.

According to the company, they are looking to develop it so that it can be used for devices such as Apple iPhone, Samsung Galaxy and the HTC range of smart phones.

Professor Byung Jin Cho from the KAIST University in South Korea, who is leading the team working on the thermoelectric (TE) generator, said the tech minimises thermal energy loss but maximises power output.

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Soon, four-in-one superpill to add years to life

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Scientists want the four-in-one drug to be licensed across the world, as various trials have proved the efficacy of the superpill in reducing heart disease risk.

The researchers have claimed that this will be a game-changer in slashing heart disease, with "considerable potential to improve global health," as test results from more than 3,000 patients have been significant, the Daily Express reported.

The polypill, which combines two blood pressure drugs, statins and aspirin, was found to lower cholesterol and hypertension, and blood pressure and cholesterol fell by a "modest but highly statistically significant" amount among the polypill users compared with patients on standard treatments.

Ruth Webster, of the George Institute for Global Health, Sydney, said that most patients either don't start or don't continue taking all the medications they need, which can lead to untimely death or further cardiovascular events.

Webster added that the largest benefits of the pill were seen in patients not currently receiving all recommended medications, which means most cardiovascular disease patients around the world

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Photographs: Getty Images

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Swiss Airlines offering world's first 'allergy-friendly' flights

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Swiss Airlines will now be the world's first airline to be designated as " allergy friendly," as determined by the European Centre for Allergy Research Foundation.

The airline will, beginning in May, offer an "individualized service product for travelers with allergies."

That includes lactose and gluten-free food and beverage alternatives such as lactose-free coffee cream and a lactose-free version of the popular Swiss chocolate bar, ABC News reported.

The airline will also use pillows stuffed with synthetic materials as an alternative to down in the first and business class cabins.

The airline will also stop use of decorative flowers and air fresheners "that might cause nose and throat irritations," and the on-board toilets will now feature soaps that are "gentle" on the skin.

The airline's website added that its high-efficiency air conditioning system filters out pollen from outdoors and animal hair from pets on board. Swiss cabin crew members are trained to respond to an allergic emergency, the website said, and "histamine tablets are available if needed."

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Now, machine that makes drinking water from thin air

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An Israeli company has developed a new and inexpensive technology that produces drinking water from thin air, an advance that can address the problem of water scarcity in developing countries such as India.

Using the technology, a litre of water can be produced for a mere 1.5 rupees, as compared to 15 rupees for a litre of bottled water, the company claims.

The Atmospheric Water-Generation Units created by Water-Gen use a "GENius" heat exchanger to chill air and condense water vapour.

The clean air is passed through the heat exchanger system where it gets dehumidified.

The water is then removed from the air and collected in a tank inside the unit, CNN reported.

"From there the water is passed through an extensive water filtration system which cleans it from possible chemical
and microbiological contaminations," co-CEO Arye Kohavi said.

"We believe that the products can be sold to developing countries in different civilian applications. For example in India, (drinking) water for homes is not available and will also be rare in the future. The Atmospheric Water-Generation Unit can be built as a residential unit and serve as a perfect water supply solution for homes in India," said Kohavi.

The system can produces 250-800 litres of potable water a day depending on temperature and humidity conditions.

According to Kohavi, it only uses two cents' worth of electricity to produce a litre of water.

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Scientists building 'space ark' to save humanity

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Scientists are developing an interstellar Noah's Ark -- a self-sustaining spaceship that can carry humans on a one-way mission to find a new world to inhabit in the event of a global catastrophe.

Researchers around the UK are working with colleagues from the US, Italy and the Netherlands on Project Persephone,
investigating new bio-technologies that could one day help to create a self-sustaining spacecraft to carry people beyond our solar system.

The spaceship would incorporate into its structure organic matter such as algae and artificial soil, using the Sun's energy to produce biofuel and a sustainable source of food, 'The Times' reported.

It would need to keep a few thousand people alive for generations on a one-way mission to find a new world to inhabit, researchers said.

According to the project website, scientists are "considering the application of living technologies such as
protocells, programmable smart chemistry, in the context of habitable starship architecture that can respond and evolve according to the needs of its inhabitants."

Rachel Armstrong, a senior architecture and design lecturer at the University of Greenwich, is leading the project, which includes 13 designers, six of whom are based in the UK. Armstrong's research focuses on bio-engineering, developing artificial soil and droplets of water that can be programmed to carry key elements.

"If the Earth ends up a no-go zone for human beings due to climate change or nuclear or biological warfare, we have to preserve human civilisation. We need nature to survive, so how do we take nature with us?" said Steve Fuller, the team's sociologist, based at the University of Warwick.

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This is the largest balloon sculpture ever

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A New York-based artist has broken the world record 'for the largest balloon sculpture ever made by a single person' by making an implausible sculpture of Transformers robot Optimus Prime.

John Reid took 42 hours to create the 50ft tall Transformers character statute from 4,302 balloons at the 2014 Salt Lake Comic Con in Utah and named the art Poptimus Prime, the Daily Star reported.

The artist revealed that he wants someone to challenge his feat by building an even bigger piece.

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Why some people see 'Jesus in toast'

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Researchers have found that the phenomenon of 'face pareidolia' -- where onlookers report seeing images of Jesus, Virgin Mary, or Elvis in objects such as toasts, shrouds, and clouds - is normal and based on physical causes.

Lead researcher Prof Kang Lee of the University of Toronto's Eric Jackman Institute of Child Study, said most people think you have to be mentally abnormal to see these types of images, so individuals reporting this phenomenon are often ridiculed.

He said their findings suggest that it's common for people to see non-existent features because human brains are uniquely wired to recognize faces, so that even when there's only a slight suggestion of facial features the brain automatically interprets it as a face.

They discovered face paredilia isn't due to a brain anomaly or imagination but is caused by the combined work of the frontal cortex which helps generate expectations and sends signals to the posterior visual cortex to enhance the interpretation stimuli from the outside world.

Researchers also found that people can be led to see different images -- such as faces or words or letters -- depending on what they expect to see, which in turn activates specific parts of the brain that process such images.

Seeing "Jesus in toast" reflects our brain's normal functioning and the active role that the frontal cortex plays in visual perception. Instead of the phrase "seeing is believing" the results suggest that "believing is seeing."

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