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Grist List: Look what we found.


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Giant 2,000-pound camels used to live in the Arctic

camel_face
Adam Foster

Canadian paleontologists were digging around recently on an Arctic island called Ellesmere, just west of Greenland, when they found a fossilized leg bone. Or, really, tiny little pieces of bone that, with a little digital assist, looked like the leg bone of a hoofed mammal. Specifically, the archeologists figured out, a camel. A giant camel. That lived in the Arctic. A giant, 2,000-pound Arctic camel.

Read more: Climate & Energy

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Sure, that bike is nice, but wouldn’t you rather have a unicorn?

We've all been there. You're trying to sell a really nice bike to a dude who seems really interested, and then OF COURSE some jackass shows up with a unicorn and the whole deal goes sour. Sure, it has some nice features like wish-granting and shooting rainbows out of its horn, but the bike has a titanium frame! Ugh, unicorns ruin everything.

Read more: Living

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Turns out IKEA cake now comes with extra feces

Can you make sure my new kitchen doesn't have any poop in it?
ikea.com
Can you make sure my new kitchen doesn't have any poop in it?

IKEA is so easy to make fun of, what with the weird Swedish names of everything and the cartoon instructions and those anemic little "tools." It's a good thing for them they just make piles and piles of money selling crap to us and don't have any real reason to give much of a rat's ass what we think. Because, right on the heels of the "horse meat in IKEA meatballs" story, we've now found that in December (December??? Did they send the news via Pony Express, and did the first pony die and end up in a Swedish meatball?), Chinese officials destroyed 1,800 pounds of IKEA almond cakes, when tests demonstrated the product had "excessive levels" of coliform bacteria. What is coliform bacteria, you ask? What a wonderful question! It is something often found in the feces of a mammal. In this case, probably a mouse. Better than a human, not better than a cake with no shit in it.

Read more: Food

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Bike Helmet of Justice will capture footage of the a*hole driver who hit you

helmet
Chaotic Moon via Fast Company

The Helmet of Justice, designed by big-deal mobile studio Chaotic Moon, has embedded in it seven cameras that start recording when jarred and jostled -- i.e., when the cyclist wearing it gets into an accident.

Fast Company reports:

Like many cyclists involved in hit and runs, [Chaotic Moon designer John] Poindexter was too dazed in the aftermath of the accident to remember any identifying details of the vehicle -- in fact, he landed in the hospital and had no recollection of what happened at all. Chaotic Moon’s solution: Create a helmet that can tell cyclists’ stories for them.

Read more: Living

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Mind-bending four-dimensional graffiti takes street art to the next level

insa_1

Street artist INSA isn't satisfied working in only three dimensions. His graffiti projects also move in time. INSA paints, photographs, re-paints, and re-photographs his works over a span of days, resulting in a piece of street art that is beautiful at every moment but becomes something really special when viewed as a time-lapse animation.

INSA_2

Read more: Uncategorized

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We’re addicted to this map of average commute times in the U.S.

On average, in America, it takes a person 25.4 minutes to get to work. But averages elide so much wonderful, painful information about location and the burden of commuting. Information that this map, put together by WNYC, lets you explore in agonizing detail:

io9 warns that "if you're into this kind of thing, this map can be a bit of a rabbit hole." So, uh, you can imagine what we've been doing for the past [REDACTED] minutes.

Read more: Living

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Global warming is causing flying squirrels to engage in miscegenation

Dude let's get some of that northern flying squirrel tail tonight that shit is sweeeeeeet
Ken Thomas
Dude, let's get some of that northern flying squirrel tail tonight that shit is sweeeeeeet.

Flying squirrel race purists have another reason to hate climate change: Some scientists believe that as a response to shifting temperatures, the southern flying squirrel has begun to mate with the northern flying squirrel and -- just in case anyone reading this is really, really dumb -- vice versa.

Let's be clear. There is no question that the southern flying squirrel and northern flying squirrel have begun to do it and produce offspring. In a northern region of  Ontario currently being studied with regard to this strange squirrel interbreeding, about 4 percent of the squirrels now being born are hybrids. The question is why. There are many factors that can cause interbreeding, such as loss of habitat, or the sudden presence of invasive species. But Canadian scientists Jeff Bowman and Paul Wilson, who have been studying and tracking this interbreeding, are pretty sure this interbreed lovefest is climate-change related, mostly because the hybrids started to emerge around the same time -- 1995 -- that the winters began to get steadily warmer.

Read more: Climate & Energy

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These beautiful landscapes are actually piles of trash

Click to embiggen.
Yao Lu
Click to embiggen.

Artist Yao Lu's works look like classical Chinese landscape paintings, but they're actually photographs of landfill garbage covered in construction netting. We trust you can all figure out the message here, and we don't have to go all art school on your ass.

lao_yu_2
Yao Lu
Read more: Living

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This soccer ball generates energy while you play

It is a light it is also a ball it is a ball it is also a light
Uncharted Play
It's a ball! It's a battery! It's a ball and a battery!

This is a real soccer ball. You can head it, kick it, knee it, slap it out of a goal with your fist, or, if you are Diego Maradona, knock it into one. A soccer ball does not need another reason to be a wonderful thing, but this particular soccer ball provides one: Kick it around for 30 minutes and it powers an LED bulb for three hours.

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Fly to Mars in a spaceship made of poop

toilet_ship
Rich dude/dreamer Dennis Tito wants to send a man and a woman on a round-trip journey to Mars in 2018. One of the challenges of such a journey: cosmic radiation. A solution for this challenge: lining the walls of the spacecraft with water, food, and -- we really hope this stuff isn't all going to be touching each other -- the astronauts' own feces.