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Die With Me – A Smartphone Chat App That Can Only Be Used When You Have Less Than 5% Battery Left

From Whatsapp to WeChat or Skype,the world has plenty of choices when it comes to messaging apps that connect friends and strangers on the internet. The market is so crowded this days that for a new competitor to even get noticed, they’d have to come up with something completely new. Enter “Die With Me,” a fresh chat app that can only be used when your smartphone has 5% or less battery remaining.

Die With Me allows total strangers with low battery to log into an online chatroom and converse as they wait for their handhelds to shut off completely. Or, as the developers so poetically put it, to “die together in a chatroom on your way to offline peace.” Using Die With Me requires nothing more than choosing a username and allowing the app to read your battery status. The idea behind the strangely poignant app was to turn the frustrating experience of dealing with low phone battery into a positive one.

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Library of Abandoned Books – Garbage Collectors in Turkey Open Library with Books Destined for the Landfills

An incredible new library has opened in the Çankaya district of Ankara, Turkey featuring a collection of salvaged books once destined for landfill.

Local sanitation workers, who spent months collecting abandoned and discarded books from the streets, established the library to be used by themselves and their families. As the collection grew, however, word spread throughout the community, and locals began to donate books that they would have otherwise discarded. In September of last year, the Sanitation Department decided to open the library up to public use.

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Woman Documents Fixing the Wing of a Live Monarch Butterfly Using Household Items

Romy McCloskey, a professional costume designer from Texas who also raises monarch butterflies as a hobby, recently received a lot of praise online, after a series of photos of her using household items to fix the deformed wing of one of her butterflies went viral.

McCloskey apparently started raising monarch butterflies and releasing them into the wild, a while ago. Recently, she noticed that one of the insects was born with a broken left wing, as a result of an injury sustained while pupating, and could not fly. Monarchs can live from 2 weeks to about 5 months, but without the ability to fly, this little guy wasn’t going to live very long. So Romy, who describes herself as a “master hand embroiderer”, decided to use her skills to help him.

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This $850,000 Gene Therapy Injection Is the Most Expensive One-Time Dose Medicine Ever Made

A new and first-of-its-kind gene therapy treatment for inherited blindness, called Luxturna, was approved by the FDA last month. The groundbreaking medication, however, comes with the staggering cost of USD 850,000, making it one of the most expensive treatments in the world, and placing it far beyond the means of most patients.

Spark Therapeutics, the company releasing the drug, had initially planned to sell Luxturna for 1 million USD but lowered the price after health insurers expressed concern over their ability to cover the cost of the injectable treatment. Despite the small drop in price, Luxturna is still significantly more expensive than almost every other medication on the global market, including two separate gene therapy treatments approved last year by the FDA. Luxturna is the first gene therapy that treats an inherited condition. It has proven to improve vision for those with a rare form of inherited blindness that is estimated to affect less than 2,000 people in the US.

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MIT Scientists Develop Method to Make Plants Glow in the Dark

MIT researchers have made an important breakthrough in their quest to make plants that glow in the dark a reality. In what they call Plant Nanobionics, the engineers embedded nanoparticles into the leaves of a watercress plant that caused the plants to give off a dim glow for three and a half hours.

Their next goal is to create plants bright enough to illuminate a workspace, but, if successful, the technology could also be used to transform trees into self-powered streetlights, the scientists claim. The team’s ultimate goal is to engineer plants to replace many of the functions currently performed by electrical devices and appliances.

“The vision is to make a plant that will function as a desk lamp — a lamp that you don’t have to plug in. The light is ultimately powered by the energy metabolism of the plant itself,” said Michael Strano, the Carbon P. Dubbs Professor of Chemical Engineering at MIT and the senior author of a recently released study on plant nanobionics.

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French “Naked Restaurant” Allows Patrons to Dine in the Nude

At the recently inaugurated O’naturel restaurant in Paris, France, diners leave more than their coats at the door. The country’s first “naked restaurant” allows naturists to enjoy classic French fare completely nude, in a comfortable and relaxed ambiance.

O’naturel is not the first nudist restaurant in Europe. In the summer of 2016, a pop-up nudist restaurant opened in London, followed by another in Tenerife. Their success inspired twin entrepreneurs Mike and Stephane Saada to try the same concept in Paris. Although they’re not nudists themselves, the brothers spotted a lucrative opportunity in a country known as a top naturist destination. “People only get to be nudists in the summer,” 42-year-old Stephane said, suggesting O’naturel lets patrons enjoy nudism all year year round.

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Bolwoningen – The Futuristic Bubble Houses of Den Bosch

Science and technology progress so fast that something created only a decade ago will most likely feel like an antique to its present-day observers. This, however, is not the case with the ball-shaped houses in the Dutch city of Den Bosch: they resembled the set of a sci-fi movie when they were conceived in 1984 and remain as futuristic-looking to this very day.

Known locally as Bolwoningen, these bulbous homes were created as part of a Dutch experimental housing program launched in 1968. They were designed by artist and sculptor Dries Kreijkamp in the 1970s and the project was completed in 1984 along with another subsidy winner: the famed Kubuswoningen (cube homes) in Rotterdam, designed by Piet Blom. While the program was shut down the same year the Bolwoningen became a reality, this experimental housing complex continues to stand and remains as wow-worthy as the day it took shape.

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Brazilian Tattoo Artist Specializes in Concealing Stretch Marks and Circles Under the Eyes with Ink

Although stretch marks are a typical, albeit annoying, part of life, most people wish that they could make them permanently disappear. There is an entire industry built around creams, lotions, and even surgery to help conceal these imperfections, but a Brazilian tattoo artist has developed a much simpler, more effective solution.

Rodolpho Torres, of São Paulo, uses flesh colored ink to hide stretch marks as well as circles under the eye. His exact method is a closely guarded secret, but we know that it involves creating an optical illusion via tattoo shading. Anvisa (National Agency of Sanitary Surveillance) has approved his ink, and he personalizes each mixture to achieve a tone similar to that of the client’s skin. The ink blends into the stretch marks and dark circles, giving them the color of the skin. Once the tattoos have healed, the client’s skin appears smoother, and after sixty days they can sunbathe without the risk of spots developing.

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Indian Man Checks Into Hotels, Steals 120 TV Sets Over Four Months

Hotel owners, beware: sometimes respectable-looking, well-behaved guests are after your room fixtures! An Indian man actually made a career of it, taking off with more than 120 TV sets from hotels over a period of four months.

Vasudev Nanaiah, 37, was arrested last month and charged with 21 counts of theft after wreaking havoc among budget hotels in southern India by stealing an impressive number of TV sets from the rooms he booked. The TV pilferer would reserve the rooms by telephone and always make a small advance payment, informing the staff that he would be staying there for several days, in order to avoid suspicion. Nanaiah always arrived with bulky suitcases in tow, and in case they proved too small for the targeted TVs, he would simply go out and buy new ones.

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Irish Beach That Vanished 12 Years Ago Reappears Overnight

Imagine waking up one day and finding that your beautiful local beach is no more – gone, its fine white sand swept away by a freak storm. You go about your daily business for 12 long years and then suddenly the beach is back, all its glory restored by another storm. This is what happened on the island of Achill, off the coast of Ireland, where the inhabitants are celebrating the return of the beautiful Ashleam Bay beach that was taken from them in 2005.

That in itself is remarkable enough, but the story gets even better! You see, another beach in Achill did a disappearing act once, but took much longer to return. The beach at Doonagh, located only six miles (10km) away from Ashleam Bay, was restored earlier this year after waves created by spring storms had swept away all the sand in 1984, leaving just rock pools behind.

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Loud “Booms” Occurring All Around the World Leave Experts Scratching Their Heads

Mysterious boom sounds have baffled people all over the planet throughout the past year. There have been 64 recorded incidents within the last 12 months, with the majority heard on the east coast of the USA, but also reported everywhere from the Middle East to Australia. Experts have no clear answer as to the cause of these sounds, but theories range from Leonid shower meteorites exploding in the atmosphere to supersonic aircrafts.

The most recent bang resounded over the US state of Alabama on November 14. Dubbed “Bama boom,” the noise shook houses and terrified locals. Residents notified authorities of a suspicious sound that rattled windows and seemed to originate on the northwest side of Lochbuie, Alabama. They could not figure out the source of the noise, however, and have ruled out an explosion as they could not find flames or an odor indicating one.

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Double Bionic Hands Aim to Prove That Four Hands Are Better Than Two

Bionic limbs used to be restricted to the realm of fiction, but the technology, first released in 1993, has been making massive leaps in the past few years. Now, one Italian Robotics company called Youbionic has taken the next significant leap forward by releasing a 3D printed and customizable bionic appendage consisting of two robotic hands.

The 3D printed device, designed by Federico Ciccarese, is made from nylon dust and consists of an Arduino micro-controller, actuators, and three electrodes that are activated by nerve impulses in the same way that muscles move when neurons send signals from our brains.

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Human Piggy Bank – Doctors Remove 263 Coins from Man’s Stomach

There’s strange eating habits and then there’s crazy eating habits. Sometimes the latter can be life-threatening, as in the case of 35-year-old Maksud Khan. The Indian man was recently admitted into hospital on suspicions of having severe food poisoning, but as it turned out, his three months of stomach pains were the result of having seven kilos (15.4 pounds) of foreign objects in his belly, including 263 metal coins.

The doctors who took Khan’s case got a massive shock when an endoscopy revealed that food poisoning had nothing to do with the problem. The surgeons at Satna’s Sanjay Gandhi Hospital in the state of Madhya Pradesh rushed Khan to the operating room and proceeded to extract 263 coins, 100 nails, a hefty piece of rusted iron shackle, dozens of razor blades, glass shards, and stones from his stomach.

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Dutch Man Has a Collection of 1,200 Messages in Bottles Washed Up on Beaches

Dutch beachcomber Wim Kruiswijk has amassed a collection of 1200 messages-in-bottles over the course of 34 years and has responded to almost all of them.

68-year-old Kruiswijk says that his unusual hobby began in 1983 when he found three bottles on his local beach, each containing letters and return addresses. He wrote to all three addresses and was surprised to receive responses from each one. It was this experience which sparked his interest in hunting and collecting messages in bottles, and he hasn’t stopped looking for them since.

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Infamous Conman Asks to Spend 20 Years in Solitary Because He Can’t Stop Conning People

Jimmy Sabatino, one of Florida’s most notorious and prolific conmen, was recently convicted to 20 years of solitary confinement, after pleading guilty to running a $10.4 million (USD) fraud. He was already in prison at the time, but managed to run a successful racketeering operation with the help of associates on the outside. During his trial, Sabatino told the judge that he cannot stop himself from committing crimes, and requested that he be sentenced to solitary confinement at Supermax, one of the toughest prisons in the US. He claims that the lack of human contact is the only thing that can stop him from conning people.

Sabatino, who has spent most of his life since age 19 behind bars, was serving a sentence at the Federal Detention Center in Miami for violating the terms of his supervised release, in 2014, when he came up with an idea of another con, from inside the prison. He somehow convinced two correction officers at the detention center to smuggle 5 mobile phones for him, which he used to call victims and associates on the outside. Both officers lost their jobs, but neither of them faced criminal prosecution.

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