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Numerous tents are seen during the 2013 International Camping Festival on Mount Wugongshan in Pingxiang, Jiangxi province, China. The event attracted more than 15,000 campers from all over the world, according to Xinhua News Agency.

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Flickr user: Brent Moore

Fake masculinity on demand. At first, this seems like a case of neat science. Many species of cephalopods have the ability to change coloration on demand, and some researchers have found a species of squid where the females have three stripes running down their mantles. The interesting bit is that they use two different mechanisms for controlling the color changes of these stripes. The weird bit is why they change color: the authors suspect that the stripes can make a female look like it's a male. That can keep males from trying to mate with it, which may be helpful if the female already has mated.

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An anonymous reader writes "Cats are cute, and cute is good for cognition. Which is why Memrise, a language learning startup, settled on using lolcat-style cat photos as mnemonic aids for a new series of apps aimed at people who normally wouldn't bother learning another language. The first CatAcademy app is 'Cat Spanish' From the article: 'What we found, however we sliced it, was that pictures of cats — cute pictures specifically, of which over 50% were cats — just kept on coming out as the most effective mnemonics... I have to admit we were slightly skeptical to begin with. We're a scientific group, and data driven — but the data did drive us towards cats.'"

Now, just to add cat pictures to Mnemosyne.

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Original author: 
(author unknown)

Time once more for a look at the animal kingdom and our interactions with the countless species that share our planet. Today's photos include Iranian dog owners under pressure, a bloom of mayflies, Kim Jong-un visiting Breeding Station No. 621, animals fleeing recent fires and floods, and a dachshund receiving acupuncture therapy. These images and many others are part of this roundup of animals in the news from recent weeks, seen from the perspectives of their human observers, companions, captors, and caretakers, part of an ongoing series on animals in the news. [38 photos]

James Hyslop, a Scientific Specialist at Christie's auction house holds a complete sub-fossilised elephant bird egg on March 27, 2013 in London, England. The massive egg, from the now-extinct elephant bird sold for $101,813 at Christie's "Travel, Science and Natural History" sale, on April 24, 2013 in London. Elephant birds were wiped out several hundred years ago. The egg, laid on the island of Madagascar, is believed to date back before the 17th century. (Oli Scarff/Getty Images)     

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Original author: 
Skye Parrott

baby elephant ocean

On this slow, rainy Friday before the long weekend, the best we have to offer over here is some videos of animals and children. The first is a baby elephant swimming in the ocean for the first time. The second is a crippled lion and his friends, who are wiener dogs. The last one is  is a bossy little girl (not technically a wild animal but if you spend any time around kids, you’ll probably agree with me that it counts). Have a good long weekend and we’ll see you Tuesday.

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(author unknown)

Daytona Beach, 1999

In 1999, award-winning Magnum photographer Eli Reed set off to document spring break in Daytona Beach, Florida. Having watched the white kids getting hysterically drunk and “trying to crawl up inside the backside of uncaring contestants” in wet t-shirt competitions, he moved on to the black spring breakers who were doing much better things, like driving around with albino pythons and stuff. Here are some previously unseen moments from his series.

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Original author: 
Andrew Webster

Ats_kickstarter_screen_01_large

Helplessness is a key to good horror, and there are few times when you're more helpless than as a child. Among the Sleep, an upcoming game that just launched a Kickstarter campaign, aims to exploit that fact by putting you in the role of a two-year-old. You'll stumble through a dark house in search of your parents, seeing the world from a first-person perspective — and one that's much lower to the ground. You'll also have to deal with the added terrors created by a child's overactive imagination.

"There are at least two times in everyone's lives when we have been authentically scared: and that's while we are dreaming and when we were children," explains Adrian Tingstad Husby, from development studio Krillbite. "Among the Sleep...

Continue reading…

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