Why do other people hear our voices differently than we do?
Jun12

Why do other people hear our voices differently than we do?

We have probably all had this experience. We listen to a re­cording of ourselves talking and insist that the tape doesn’t sound at all like our voice – but everyone else insists it does. So, is there a medical explanation for this lack of self-perception?

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What is a Planet? ; How should a Planet be Defined?
Jun08

What is a Planet? ; How should a Planet be Defined?

Science is supposed to be precise in its definitions, proofs and theorems. Its something today that we just expect so it may come as something of a shock that the definition of one of the most fundamental of celestial bodies, a planet, wasn’t actually defined until the 1990’s !

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Measuring Infinity – How Many Atoms Are There in the Universe ?
May18

Measuring Infinity – How Many Atoms Are There in the Universe ?

t’s no secret that the universe is an extremely vast place. But can we calculate how many atoms it contains?

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What Does it Mean to be “double-jointed” ?
May15

What Does it Mean to be “double-jointed” ?

Should you discover that you have the ability to bend the upper half of your thumb until it makes a right-angle you might feel rather chuffed with yourself as you can then describe yourself as “double jointed” – surely that means you have two joints where most people have one ? NO, unfortunately not!

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Hard Science : The Relative Hardness of Being
May01

Hard Science : The Relative Hardness of Being

Here’s a rather random, but nevertheless interesting, science fact : Did you know that there’s a Scientific scale of hardness ? And when you see it you’ll find that its surprisingly simple – no equations, no calculus and no test tubes involved at all.

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What is the Mozart Effect & How Much Can Babies Actually Hear Inside their Mother ?
Apr27

What is the Mozart Effect & How Much Can Babies Actually Hear Inside their Mother ?

There’s a popular belief that’s been around for a while that playing calssical music to a baby and even an unborn child will make them smarter. This is otherwise known as “The Mozart Effect”. So, this rather begs the question …. “Is there any truth in this?” and if so “How much can a baby actually hear inside their Mother’s womb?”

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Were the Dinosaurs Cold-Blooded like all today’s Reptiles ?
Apr24

Were the Dinosaurs Cold-Blooded like all today’s Reptiles ?

The problem with dinosaurs is that they lived a very long time ago- between 250 million and 65 million years ago – and the vast majority of our knowledge of them is based on fossilized bones and skeletons, which are all that have survived the ravages of time. So can we tell if dinosaurs were warm or cold-blooded ?

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Why Does Your Whole Body Ache When You Get a Cold or Flu?
Mar16

Why Does Your Whole Body Ache When You Get a Cold or Flu?

Most of us will be familiar with the aches that seem to accompany the bouts of flu we sometimes contract, especially during the change of seasons. But why does our whole body ache, including bits that really shouldn’t like teeth & hair ?

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Prune Time in the Bath – Why Do Our Fingers Wrinkle in the Water ?
Mar06

Prune Time in the Bath – Why Do Our Fingers Wrinkle in the Water ?

Having a bath has uses aside from getting clean and reading a good book: it gives you an excuse to observe a bodily quirk that it would appear has been with us since Homo sapiens left the trees.

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Valentine Conundrums : Why Does an X Stand for a Kiss? and Why Do Humans Kiss?
Feb13

Valentine Conundrums : Why Does an X Stand for a Kiss? and Why Do Humans Kiss?

A valentine’s day conundrum for you : Why does an X stand for a kiss? and why do humans kiss anyway?

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Why is it that Humans Can Speak?
Feb06

Why is it that Humans Can Speak?

Of all the things that define us as humans there is surely one remarkable thing that marks us out from other life on earth – language and the ability to communicate via speech. But what is it in our genes that allows us to do this?

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Could Huge Dinosaurs Really Sustain Themselves on a Veggie Diet?
Feb02

Could Huge Dinosaurs Really Sustain Themselves on a Veggie Diet?

On the face of it there seems little hope of working out precisely how a 75ft long, 50 ton Brachiosaur fed itself. However it is possible to make a few guesstimates, by assuming the present laws of physics and chemistry applied 65 million years ago.

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The Joy of Slinky – The Physics of a Metal Marvel
Jan30

The Joy of Slinky – The Physics of a Metal Marvel

I’ve recently re-discovered the joy of the Slinky – one of the simplest of all children’s toys and yet, so beguiling, as it seems to defy the laws of physics by hinting at some sort of perpetual motion. So how on earth does this work?

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How to Measure the Speed of Light Using Chocolate, a Microwave and a Ruler
Jan12

How to Measure the Speed of Light Using Chocolate, a Microwave and a Ruler

It took over 300 years of experimentation and refinement to arrive at the figure for the speed of light which we use as standard today. That being the case, the method proposed in this article for determining that speed yourself might seem more than a little surprising.

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Is it True that Opera Singers Really Can Shatter Wine Glasses by Singing ?
Jan09

Is it True that Opera Singers Really Can Shatter Wine Glasses by Singing ?

The renowned soprano Dame Nellie Melba is reputed to have performed this trick and in 1971 the audio-tape maker Memorex based a very successful advertising campaign around Ella Fitzgerald shattering glass both when singing live and when recorded on its tape cassettes (a claim the company still stands by today).

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