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Day of the Dolphin, Imperfect Harmony, The Iceman Cometh

VERY SHORT LISTDay of the dolphin INVENTIONThe Lunocet The Lunocet is a carbon-fiber monofin that’s modeled on a dolphin’s tail. Strap it on, and you’ll find yourself swimming twice as fast as any Olympian.

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VERY SHORT LIST

Day of the dolphin
Aquaman The dolphin's toolbox Oscar Pistorius
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INVENTION
The Lunocet

The Lunocet is a carbon-fiber monofin that’s modeled on a dolphin’s tail. Strap it on, and you’ll find yourself swimming twice as fast as any Olympian.

Invented by a Georgia engineer named Ted Ciamillo, the James Bondish device weighs 2.5 pounds, has a 42-inch wingspan, and propels you through the water at speeds of up to 8 mph. (Michael Phelps hits 4 mph on a good day.) Ciamillo’s hoping that the Marine Corps’s amphibious unit adopts the Lunocet, but civilians can order it now (for $1,500), in one of five eye-popping colors. Put us down for “Orange Ruffian,” please.

READ an article on the Lunocet in Scientific American

VISIT the Lunocet website
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VSL:WEB

Imperfect harmony
Hilltop Coke ad HAL 9000 ThruYou
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RECORDING
“Bicycle Built for 2,000”

Aaron Koblin and Daniel Massey paid 2,088 people in 71 countries $0.06 each to listen to a sound clip and record it in their own voice. None of the participants knew what the final recording would be. But Koblin and Massey had picked a no-brainer.

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The song they’d chosen — “Daisy Bell” — dates back to 1892. Seventy years later, it became the first song that the world’s first singing computer, the IBM 704, would sing. (It’s also the song that Hal 9000 sings at the end of 2001: A Space Odyssey.) But Koblin and Massey’s art project is the most original take to date: Instead of programming a computer, they used a computer program (Amazon’s Mechanical Turk Web service) to stitch together a cross section of humanity. Okay, computer: It’s your move.

CHECK OUT “Bicycle Built for 2,000”

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VSL:SCIENCE

The iceman cometh
The Ice Mummy Curse The Murderer Next Door Lucy
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VIRTUAL AUTOPSY
Oetzi the Iceman

Oetzi the Iceman, who was discovered in 1991 in a glacier in the Italian Alps, had a rough life. He suffered from arthritis and heart disease, and he came to a nasty, violent end.

To see Oetzi in the flesh, you once had to travel to the town of Bolzano, in northern Italy. But European researchers have posted super-high-res photos of the 5,000-year-old mummy online, and you can now see the gory details for yourself: Zoom in on the gaping wound in Oetzi’s back, his fractured skull, his inscrutable tattoos. This iceman may have come to a quick end, but his afterlife is one of the longest on record.

CHECK OUT the Iceman Photoscan

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