Jr High Drop Out

The Willpower Fallacy

Studies show 1 brain hack can stop addiction cold. Instead of relying on willpower, the brain makes choices and forms behavior based on a built-in, primitive, reward-based system called reinforcement learning. Whenever the brain has a choice, it gravitates toward the more rewarding option.


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The Milky Way And A Man

via LandscapeLuke on Reddit.

I just appreciate the art and the message encapsulated in this image. We are truly a pale blue dot in an ocean that stretches farther than anyof us honestly comprehend.


#science #art

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Less Iron Linked To Longevity

Study of More Than 1 Million People Finds Intriguing Link Between Iron Levels And Lifespan. via ScienceAlert.

"We speculate that our findings on iron metabolism might also start to explain why very high levels of iron-rich red meat in the diet has been linked to age-related conditions such as heart disease."

I will live to 768 as long as science keeps focused on learning how to keep me alive.


#health #science

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Cosmological Crisis

[W]hen the assumption of flatness is removed, a cosmological crisis emerges where disparate observed properties of the Universe appear to be mutually inconsistent. A possible solution to this problem is to raise “by hand” the expected signal of gravitational lensing in CMB data. There is, however, at the moment, no physical model that can do this, and this solution can be defined in one word: Epicycles.

via Nature Research Astronomy Community


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Stephen Hawking on depression and life's difficulties

"Black holes ain't as black as they are painted. They are not the eternal prisons they were once thought. Things can get out of a black hole both on the outside and possibly to another universe. So if you feel you are in a black hole, don't give up – there's a way out."


#science #psychology

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Too much gray…


#science #wtf

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I have loved the stars too fondly to be fearful of the night


#me #introspection #science

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Galactic arch over ALMA


#science #beauty

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Galactic arch over ALMA

title:

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Galactic arch over ALMA


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How can you tell a chemist from a plumber?

Ask them to pronounce “unionized.”


#wtf #science

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Who Americans spend their time with

Here is your oddly and subtly depressing data for the day.


#family #friends #science

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Super Science Stories

Super Science Stories July 1950, page 73. Interior art by Paul Callé.


#art #science #writing

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The unexpected effect of red meat

Unexpected correlation of telomere length with the frequency of consumption of red meat indicates the need for further in-depth research and may undermine some accepted concepts of adverse effects of this diet on the health status and life longevity.

via the NIH

For those who follow the science of longevity, you will find these results interesting and worth further study. In any case, I’ve been on a severely reduced red meat diet for years, so I’m glad to read there may be another unexpected, positive benefit to that choice.


#health #science

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How I suspect it went down

Klingons: Okay we don’t get it.

Vulcan Science Academy: Get what?

Klingons: Basically, Vulcans are a bunch of nerds but you’re also tougher, stronger, and smarter than humans in every single way…

Klingons: So, why do you let them run your Federation?

Vulcan Science Academy: Look…

Vulcan Science Academy: This is a species where if you give them two warp cores they don’t do experiments on one and save the other for if the first one blows up…

Vulcan Science Academy: This is a species where if you give them two warp cores, they will ask for a third one, immediately plug all three into each other, punch a hole into an alternate universe where humans subscribe to an even more destructive ideological system, fight everyone in it because they’re offended by that, steal their warp cores, plug those together, punch their way back here, then try to turn a nearby sun into a torus because that was what their initial scientific experiment was for and they didn’t want to waste a trip.

Vulcan Science Academy: They did that last week. we have the write-up right here. it’s getting published in about six hundred scientific journals across two hundred different disciplines because of how many established theories their ridiculous little expedition has just called into question. also, they did turn that sun into a torus, and no one actually knows how.

Klingons: O_o

Vulcan Science Academy: This is why we let them do whatever the hell they want.

Klingons: Can we be a part of your federation?


#tv #science

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Black Hole Imaged For First Time

Finally! Black Hole Imaged For First Time By Event Horizon Telescope.

For past several decades, astronomers believed that supermassive black holes exist at the very center of massive galaxies. So far, given their nature, all attempts to observe and study them has been confined to indirect methods. Now the history is made on April 12th, 2017, changing all that, when an international team of astronomers captured the first-ever image of Sagittarius A*. In order to achieve this astronomers used a series of telescopes around the globe, collectively known as Event Horizon telescope (EHT).

Science is sort of awesome in case you didn’t know.


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If you ever wanted to know what you are past your prime for

Spoiler Alert: Nothing. You are past your prime for nothing.


#introspection #science

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Me and Kathryn Sullivan, the first woman to walk in space


#me #science

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Math is the language of science

Happy Pi Day to all my fellow geeks, nerds, dorks, outcasts, outsiders, dweebs, and introverts. May people one day be as rational as math to us.


#science #holiday

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Why That Maui Wowie Doesn't Hit You The Same Way Every Time

Fascinating look at marijuana’s research difficulties caused by a poorly timed prohibition that overlapped the last 100 years’ Green Revolution.


#science #politics

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The Riemann Hypothesis

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The Riemann Hypothesis


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In honor of Asimov’s birthday

This is a reminder that suppressing, misleading, and denying science isn’t the answer


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Obesity in humans may be causatively linked to a pathogen

A limited study shows that obesity in humans may be causatively linked to a particular germ living in the host gut. Not likely the only cause, but a cause nonetheless. Elimination of the germ was linked to a ~30% reduction in fat and a decrease in insulin resistance.

Much more study needed, and by itself isn’t a magic bullet against fat, but its still a big deal scientifically.


#health #science

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The Fist Was Made For Punching

To illustrate his hypothesis, Carrier turned to a macabre experiment in which cadaver hands clenched in various positions, from open hand to a good old sucker punch fist, were bashed against a dumbbell. Carrier showed that a fist could handle the strike with double the force supported by an open hand before bones started to break.

#kungfu #science

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I am a huge fan of Accelerated Change

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Robots or Dinosaurs?

This question plagues humanity and demands an answer!


#science #kungfu

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What is Quantum Physics?

Quantum physics is a branch of science that deals with discrete, indivisible units of energy called quanta as described by the Quantum Theory. There are five main ideas represented in Quantum Theory:

  1. Energy is not continuous, but comes in small but discrete units.
  2. The elementary particles behave both like particles and like waves.
  3. The movement of these particles is inherently random.
  4. It is physically impossible to know both the position and the momentum of a particle at the same time. The more precisely one is known, the less precise the measurement of the other is
  5. The atomic world is nothing like the world we live in.

While at a glance this may seem like just another strange theory, it contains many clues as to the fundamental nature of the universe and is more important than even relativity in the grand scheme of things (if any one thing at that level could be said to be more important than anything else). Furthermore, it describes the nature of the universe as being much different then the world we see. As Niels Bohr said, “Anyone who is not shocked by quantum theory has not understood it.”

via ScienceNote


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This Joke Happened

Dude #1:What do you do with a sick chemist?
Dude #2:Well, if you can't helium, and you can't curium, you may as well barium.


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I call it CHZ


#art #philosophy #science

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If you have a daughter, watch this.


#science #technology #family

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From Sarcastic Mars Rover

For a complete list of things we've NOT FOUND on Mars, just look at pretty much everything around you… unless it's a rock.


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Hacking the President's DNA

The U.S. government is surreptitiously collecting the DNA of world leaders, and is reportedly protecting that of Barack Obama. Decoded, these genetic blueprints could provide compromising information. In the not-too-distant future, they may provide something more as well—the basis for the creation of personalized bioweapons that could take down a president and leave no trace.


#health #science #politics

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Mapped In My Mind's Eye

#technology #science

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The Perspective of Scale

It's simply amazing …We recommend watching this video at FULL SCREEN (1080p), with audio on.The night sky of Namibia is one of the best in the world, about the same quality of the deserts of Chile and Australia. This 13 min video contains about 250 hours of actual exposures, gathered at Tivoli Farm, Namibia, during 10 perfectly cloudless nights.

via youtube.com

How insignificant we are when our lives are measured against the majestic backdrop of the universe.


#science #introspection

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Virginia Museum of Natural History in Martinsville 2012

These are the pictures from the latest trip to the Natural History Museum.  She is very interested in science and loves these trips.


#gallery #science #family

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Universal Antiviral Drugs

Creating a single antiviral drug that could kill lots of different viruses is a longstanding dream of medical researchers. Beyond all the obvious benefits of such an honest-to-goodness wonder drug, an all-purpose antiviral would give us a much better chance of fighting back against outbreaks of exotic viruses like SARS and swine flu. As a minor but still rather nice bonus, it could also be that long awaited cure for the common cold.

via io9.com

Curing the various virii that plague us (quite literally) would be transformative to our culture and our species. I look forward to the day when we are no longer worried about bacteria and viral infection. And on a more personal note, I'm excited about the idea of dramatically increasing my lifespan. Each such advance, even those that don't pan out, improve the collective survivability of our species, but also the individual survivability of each of us. In other words, awesomesauce!


#health #science

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Gentlemen we can rebuild him. We have the technology.

Bit by bit. Piece by piece. We are slowly learning to replace each part of the human body with a synthetic variant. Right now those variants are a downgrade from the original, but that won't always be the case. Soon enough, we will be able to upgrade parts of ourselves. Newer, stronger, faster, more durable, less prone to defect or disease, impervious to cancer or harmful bacteria. These new bodies will be better in every measurable way. But they will pose an existential question we've not had to work through before. Is there a point at which I'm no longer me, but rather a simulacrum of me, if I replace enough of my body with these upgrades and if so am I upgraded or replaced?


#health #science #technology

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The world gets a tiny bit better

The cure is an untenable solution for nearly everyone, whereas modern Western medicine allows a person with HIV to live largely AIDS-free in most cases. Still, this is an event of note. The man was (pending third party confirmation, of course) cured of the virus. That is friggin' huge.

Side note, this made use of adult stem cells, and not embryonic ones. With modern discoveries that allow us to take adult stem cells and revert them to pluripotent cells, adult stem cells have a vast potential.


#health #science

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The Truth of Evolution

They lie!  Everyone knows birds come from God's eyelashes.


#religion #science

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More movement on the “Tom will live forever” front

Yay me!

Researchers at the University of Cambridge hope to revolutionise cancer therapy after discovering one of the reasons why many previous attempts to harness the immune system to treat cancerous tumours have failed.


#health #science

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762, here I come!

Biomedical researchers at the University at Buffalo have engineered adult stem cells that scientists can grow continuously in culture.

Another brick on the road toward my own immortality.


#health #science

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I, for one, accept our new alien overlords

And only 20LY away! This is why science is cool. If we find life on this planet, it will decimate e Drake equatioin as too pessimistic. Then we can stop listening to all the “alien life is rare cuz Drake said it would be” BS that never seemed right to me.


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768

I WILL live forever. They are systematically curing everything that could come along to off me.


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Only Children Unite!

It is a widely held stereotype that children who grow up without brothers or sisters may be “oddballs” or “misfits.” But new research undermines that notion–suggesting that any deficiency that does exist in only children's social skills when they are young has disappeared by their teens.

The results of the new study also put social-science research under the spotlight.

via scientificamerican.com


#family #me #science

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So now can we move on to the impact analysis?

You can debate how bad global warming will be or what to do about it, but it's hard to deny it's happening anymore. The physics of greenhouse gases trapping heat are clear. 

via scientificamerican.com


#science #politics

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It's the inconsistency for me

I wonder where all the global warming denialists are today. They come out in droves every time it snows. Today, they seem pretty quiet.


#science #politics

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Just so you know

I am like an Einstein-Rosen Bridge between Awesome and Suck.


#me #science

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Eat, Drink, Be Merry, Live Long, and Prosper!

Old news: Calorie restriction has a serious positive life-extending effect.

New news: We've isolated the gene responsible for this anomaly.

In short (for those too lazy to read the article), it appears that with some further study we may be able to invoke this longevity gene effect without the need to eat like a bird. I'm pleased and you should be too...unless you are a worshipper of a death cult, in which case you scare me and I hope I do not anger you, my creepy friend.

Only down side: Bryan, too, will benefit from this technology. Well, the bright side is that it gives me more time to plot his painful and humiliating demise.


#health #science #bryan

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Were you tone deaf?

About a month and a half ago, I posted an entry about an online test for tone deafness. A surprising number of people took the test and mentioned their results to me. Anyway, for that reason, I now link to the aggragated results of the tone deafness test as compiled by the original author of the test. The results were, to me, interesting---especially the bits about race.


#health #science

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Are you tone deaf?

Test the quality of your musical ear. I scored a 72.2%. The scale is as follows:

Greater than 90%: World Class Musical Ability
Greater than 75%: Excellent Musical Ability
Greater than 60%: Good Musical Ability
Less than 50%: You may have a Pitch PErception Issue

It takes about 5 minutes or so. It was fun. Now you try.


#health #science #music

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My inevitable march toward immortality continues

According to several sources online scientists in Britain have just announced substantial success in eliminating allergies from our lives.

They state that within 5 to 7 years that food allergies, hayfever, and the like could likely be eradicated. They have discovered that we are not allergic to the entire food or pollen grain but rather to certain proteins that are just a small part of them. They have identified these proteins and they are already testing a vaccine on humans. This is not an allergy shot as you may have experienced or heard of. Rather than being designed to get your body accustomed to the foreign substance over time through exposure, this method will eliminate your bodies need to attack said foreign substance.

Note that this has application in eliminating Asthma as well.

I'm achieving immortality one health discovery at a time.


#health #science

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The Homo Movieseat Firewall and the Twin Prime Conjecture

Last night, Bryan and I went to the movies to watch V For Vendetta. Overall, a good movie. But that's not what I'm writing about right now. Nope. Right now I'm gonna talk about math and the art of not being homo in a movie theater.

You see, Bryan has this thing about movies. He doesn't like guys to sit right next to him. It creeps him out. He likes to see one seat between all male friends in the theater. He says he only wants to sit close if it's a date. He's a total freak about it. It's his homo firewall. That one seat is all that stands between him and a torrid, slathering homo-erotic lovefest with oil, candles, Spock in leather chaps, and a soft Barry Manilow song.

Well, anyway, I'm sitting there right next to him (because it is my duty to creep Bryan out) and all I can think about is the Twin Prime Conjecture. What is the Twin Prime Conjecture? Let me explain.

You see around the year 300 BC this guy Euclid noticed that prime numbers (you know, those numbers which are only evenly divisible by themselves and 1) tend to come in pairs separated by one number. Like 11 [skip 12] 13, or 17 [skip 18] 19, or 101 [skip 102] 103. Put as Euclid did: there are infinitely many primes p such that p + 2 is also prime. He proposed that prime numbers would tend to group in that way infinitely. This conjecture has never been proved, though numerical evidence---not to mention simple heuristic reasoning involving the probabilistic distribution of primes---suggests its veracity.

Well anyway, I sat there, no seat between Bryan and I, his enormous mass (he is a fat bitch!) shifting uncomfortably from the entire movie. I should have put a hand on his knee halfway through, but I didn't want any uncut fingernail getting caught in the bristly, donkey-like fur that covers his Neanderthal legs. Instead I just leaned on the arm rest between us to invade his chair-space and spent the movie thinking of new prime twins.

I'm a hopeless freak in so many core ways.


#bryan #science

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Happy Pi Day!

The mathematical constant Pi is a real number which is defined as the ratio of a circle's circumference (Greek Piεριφέρεια, periphery) to its diameter in Euclidean geometry, and which is in common use in mathematics, physics, and engineering. The name of the Greek letter Pi is pi (pronounced pie) in English. This spelling can be used in typographical contexts where the Greek letter is not available. Pi is also known as Archimedes's constant (not to be confused with Archimedes's number) and Ludolph's number.

In Euclidean plane geometry, Pi may be defined either as the ratio of a circle's circumference to its diameter, or as the ratio of a circle's area to the area of a square whose side is the radius. Advanced textbooks define Pi analytically using trigonometric functions, for example as the smallest positive x for which sin(x) = 0, or as twice the smallest positive x for which cos(x) = 0. All these definitions are equivalent.

The numerical value of Pi, truncated to 50 decimal places (sequence A000796 in OEIS), is:

3.14159 26535 89793 23846 26433 83279 50288 41971 69399 37510

Although this precision is more than sufficient for use in engineering and science, the exact value of Pi has decimal places that never end. Much effort over the last few centuries has been put into computing more digits and investigating the number's properties. Despite much analytical work, in addition to supercomputer calculations that have determined over 1 trillion digits of Pi, no pattern in the digits has ever been found. Digits of Pi are available from multiple resources on the Internet, and a regular personal computer can compute billions of digits with available software.

Pi is an irrational number; that is, it cannot be written as the ratio of two integers, as was proven in 1761 by Johann Heinrich Lambert.

Pi is also transcendental, as was proven by Ferdinand von Lindemann in 1882. This means that there is no polynomial with rational coefficients of which Pi is a root. An important consequence of the transcendence of Pi is the fact that it is not constructible. Because the coordinates of all points that can be constructed with ruler and compass are constructible numbers, it is impossible to square the circle, that is, it is impossible to construct, using ruler and compass alone, a square whose area is equal to the area of a given circle.

The value of Pi has been known in some form since antiquity. As early as the 20th century BC, Babylonian mathematicians were using Pi=25/8, which is within 0.5% of the exact value.

It is sometimes claimed that the Bible states that Pi=3, based on a passage in 1 Kings 7:23 giving measurements for a round basin as having a 10 cubit diameter and a 30 cubit circumference. Rabbi Nehemiah explained this by the diameter being from outside to outside while the circumference was the inner brim; but it may suffice that the measurements are given in round numbers. Also, the basin may not have been exactly circular.

The most pressing open question about Pi is whether it is a normal number -- whether any digit block occurs in the expansion of Pi just as often as one would statistically expect if the digits had been produced completely "randomly", and that this is true in every base, not just base 10. Current knowledge on this point is very weak; e.g., it is not even known which of the digits 0,…,9 occur infinitely often in the decimal expansion of Pi.

Bailey and Crandall showed in 2000 that the existence of the above mentioned Bailey-Borwein-Plouffe formula and similar formulæ imply that the normality in base 2 of Pi and various other constants can be reduced to a plausible conjecture of chaos theory. See Bailey's above mentioned web site for details.

It is also unknown whether Pi and e are algebraically independent. However it is known that at least one of Pie and Pi + e is transcendental.

In non-Euclidean geometry the sum of the angles of a triangle may be more or less than Pi radians, and the ratio of a circle's circumference to its diameter may also differ from Pi. This does not change the definition of Pi, but it does affect many formulæ in which Pi appears. So, in particular, Pi is not affected by the shape of the universe; it is not a physical constant but a mathematical constant defined independently of any physical measurements. Nonetheless, it occurs often in physics.

The above stolen liberally from the Wikipedia article on the subject. The text of this entry falls under the GNU Free Documentation License. Now you are edified. Go forth and spread the wisdom of Pi.


#science #holidays

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Step One: Get a Cool Costume

My three step list intitled "How to be a bad bitch" just got one item shorter! I know what my super hero costume is gonna be made of now.

All that's left are steps two ("Master all known martial arts") and three ("Bring it!!!").


#comics #science #kungfu

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Listerine and Gonorrhea

Freakonomics is a book about incentive and correlation. What does a school teacher and a sumo wrestler have in common? How about a real estate agent and the KKK? Let this book walk you through the dark underbelly of statistics. You'll love it. I did. Besides, I know you are dying to discover the connection between Listerine and gonorrhea!


#books #science

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My Planetarium

I can't do it in Round One, but for Round Two, I'm thinking a nice telescope in a glass dome on the roof, running to a computer in the Caudroplex and from there to the big screen. Sweet! Must. Have. Home. Planetarium.


#caudroplex #science

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X-Conference

It's getting closer! Will and I were just chatting about that and the soon-to-be annouced Martian lander discovery. It'd be nice if there were life on Mars. It'd make it easier for me when I tell people I believe in UFOs. (update: The shocking announcement from NASA was that there was once water on Mars. Whoopty Doo. Everyone already knew that! Why the big hush hush and cermony? Lameless!)


#ufos #science

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