Sawed-Off Shotgun on Space Station

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I thought this was a conspiracy site at first so I did a little googling to see if cosmonauts really did carry shotguns on the Soyuz spacecraft:

Eleven years before that, two cosmonauts overshot their touchdown site by 3000 kilometres and found themselves deep in a forest with hungry wolves. That’s when Russian space officials decided to pack a sawed-off shotgun aboard every spacecraft.

Hungry wolves is most likely the code word for capitalist dogs.

(via del.icio.us/snarkyman)

The Milgram Experiment

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Wikipedia has a great summary of The Milgram Experiment.

For the experiment, subjects were recruited by newspaper ads and direct mail to participate in a study at Yale. The experiments themselves took place in two rooms in the basement of Linsly-Chittenden Hall on the university’s Old Campus. The experiment was advertised as taking one hour, for which those responding would be paid $4.50. Participants were men between the ages of 20 and 50, coming from all educational backgrounds, ranging from an elementary school dropout to participants with doctoral degrees.

The participant and a confederate of the experimenter, who would be an actor pretending to be another participant, were told by the experimenter that they would be participating in an experiment to test the effects of punishment on learning behavior.

A slip of paper was given to the participant and another to the confederate. The participant was led to believe that one of the slips said “learner” and the other said “teacher,” and that the participants had been given the slips randomly. In fact, both slips said “teacher,” but the actor claimed to have the slip that read “learner,” thus guaranteeing that the participant was always the “teacher.” At this point, the “teacher” and “learner” were separated into different rooms where they could communicate but not see each other. The confederate was sure to mention to the participant that he had a heart condition.

The “teacher” was given a 45-volt electric shock from the electro-shock generator as a sample of the shock that the “learner” would supposedly receive during the experiment. The “teacher” was then given a list of word pairs which he was to teach the learner. The teacher began by reading the list of word pairs to the learner. The teacher would then read the first word of each pair and read 4 possible answers. The learner would press a button to indicate his response. If the answer was incorrect, the learner would receive a shock, with the voltage increasing by 15 volts with each wrong answer. If correct, the teacher read the next word pair.

Related:
The Stanford Prison Experiment

The Apocryphal Books of the Bible

Wikipedia has a great list of old and new testament apocryphal literature.

New Testament apocrypha — books similar to those in the New Testament but rejected by Catholics, Orthodox and Protestants — include several gospels and lives of apostles. Some of them were clearly produced by Gnostic authors or members of other groups later defined as heterodox. Many were discovered in the 19th and 20th centuries, and produced lively speculation about the state of affairs in early Christianity.

The New Testament apocryphal book that is most famous today is the Gospel of Thomas, the only complete text of which was found in Nag Hammadi along with other works, most of which were New Testament apocrypha. The entry on Gnosticism lists more recovered texts considered to be of Gnostic origin.

Gunshots Help Uncover Man’s Tumor

From Boston.com:

BAKERSFIELD, California –They may be the gunshots that save Donald Batsch’s life. The market owner was being treated for two gunshots in the arm and abdomen suffered during a robbery when doctors discovered a tumor.

“It was like an act of God that he shot me,” Batsch said Tuesday.

If only god could send more gunmen to discover the tumors of cancer patients by shooting them in the stomach. I guess if you have cancer and have never been shot before allowing a doctor to find your tumor, then god hates you.

Cosmonaut Golf

From Damn Interesting:

Russian cosmonauts are hoping to hit a golf ball into Earth orbit from the International Space Station, setting a record for the longest drive ever made. If NASA gives the OK, the attempt will be made during one of three spacewalks planned for later this year, probably in September.

It’s all part of a commercial deal between the Russian space agency and Element 21 Golf Company of Canada.