Grist List

Earth’s most beautiful fractal patterns have to be seen to be believed

Computer science professor Paul Bourke has an exhaustive amount of information about fractals on his website, but for my money the coolest part is his collection of naturally occurring fractal images from Google Earth. If …

Astronauts fixed the space station with a toothbrush

Most of us postpone tossing our old toothbrushes in the landfill by putting them to work as cleaning tools. But very few of us postpone tossing our old toothbrushes in the landfill by putting them …

Frustrated Russians get rid of potholes by stuffing them into politicians’ mouths

The writers for Russian blog URA.RU got fed up with unfixed potholes in the city of Yekaterinburg, so they decided to force-feed them to politicians. Or, anyway, giant cartoons of politicians’ heads. They enlisted ad …

New stingray species has amazingly cool-looking skeleton

This looks like a candidate for the newest energy-efficient lightbulb, but it’s actually an x-ray of a recently-discovered freshwater stingray species.

Climate & Energy

Climate change could lead to a rise in brain-eating parasites

Maybe nothing is weird about the rise in cases of primary amebic meningoencephalitis. Or maybe climate change is making conditions more hospitable for this warm-water-loving parasite and we're all gonna dieeeeeeeeee.

Suicidal caterpillar is really dumb or really wants to get eaten

Is there a caterpillar equivalent of the Darwin Awards? Because this guy is a shoo-in. The Redditors who found this video have speculated that the caterpillar is infected with a mind-control parasite that needs to …

After not seeing one for 33 years, Japanese government finally declares river otters extinct

When you truly love somebody that’s gone missing, you never admit that she’s gone, even if you’ve seen neither hide nor hair of her for 33 years. So now we know how the Japanese government …

Vladimir Putin dressed as a bird to save endangered cranes

There are 20 white cranes left in the world. But for one special day, there were 21. OK, the extra crane wasn’t really a crane. It was Russian President Vladimir Putin on a hang-glider, wearing …

Good news: The nuclear apocalypse will kill everything but beer

Imagine there’s a huge nuclear explosion and almost everyone you know is dead. Sure, things are bad. But you can still get a beer. Alex Wellerstein at the Nuclear Secrecy blog has looked into some …

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