Earth - How much of your body is your own? This story is part of BBC Earth's "Best of 2016" list, our greatest hits of the year.
Browse the full list. • Bill Gates is actually worth $1,956• Canadian pop star Justin Bieber has five times fewer cells in his brain than in his liver• Top tennis player Serena Williams has 24.5 trillion red blood cells powering her body• Internet and social media pioneer Mark Zuckerberg’s body contains 800MB of data• President Barack Obama’s head rules his heart; his brain weighs 1.4kg, his heart just 0.4kg Welcome to The Making of Me and You, a unique, new digital interactive from BBC Earth that details extraordinary personalised facts.
Just input your date of birth, sex at birth, height and weight, and choose the metric or imperial units that make most sense to you. And instantly find out: Oscar Wilde's De Profundis read by Neil Bartlett. Awakening by J.M. Coetzee. The Pickup by Nadine Gordimer Penguin, 270 pp., $14.00 (paper) Loot and Other Stories Farrar, Straus and Giroux, 240 pp., $23.00 In one of the stories in Nadine Gordimer’s collection Jump (1991), a working-class family in England takes in a lodger, a quiet, studious young man from the Middle East.
From her reliance on the stereotype of the diabolical Islamic terrorist, one would guess that, at the time she wrote the story in the 1980s, Gordimer had not thought deeply about the question of why, in the human family, young Muslim men have assumed the role of the bad boy, the delinquent. Julie Summers is a white South African from a wealthy family. Abdu, as he calls himself, turns out to be an “illegal,” one of the hundreds of thousands of foreigners in South Africa without papers, working on the fringes of the formal economy.
For the land of his birth Abdu has only contempt. Abdu and Julie begin an affair. Julie’s decision to leave South Africa with him creates a problem, however. Atacama Humanoid Is Human, Researchers Say. The tiny humanoid discovered in Chile's Atacama Desert in 2003 is a human being, not an alien, researchers have concluded.
The six-inch skeleton, nicknamed "Ata," was thought by some to be proof of extraterrestrial life, but Garry Nolan, a microbiology professor at Stanford School of Medicine, said his study of the skeleton shows it to be human, reports LiveScience. "Every nucleotide I've been able to look at is human," Nolan told LiveScience. "I've only scratched the surface of the analysis, but there is nothing that jumps out so far as to scream 'nonhuman.'" Nolan and his team photographed the skeleton in high resolution, conducted X-ray and CT scans, and sequenced its DNA in the fall of 2012.
While they don't yet know what kinds of mutations caused the skeleton's deformities - the elongated skull and unusual number of ribs, as well as the small size - the tests suggest the individual was between six and eight years old when he or she died. Meet the Man Who Transforms Corpses into Diamonds. Rinaldo Willy's job is to transform dead people into precious stones.
Willy, 33, is the founder and CEO of Algordanza, a peculiar funeral home based in the lovely town of Domat/Ems in western Switzerland. Algordanza—which in the local Romansch language means “remembrance”—is one of the leaders in the production of so called “memorial diamonds.” If you fancy a blinged-out eternal sleep, Algordanza will put the latest technologies at your service to convert your ashes into a synthetic diamond. The price for this transfiguration ranges between 4,500 and 20,000 Swiss francs ($5,000-$22,000), depending on how big a diamond you want to become. That includes the packaging of your shiny remains into what the firm’s website describes as a “noble wooden box.”
Every year, 850 former-people enter Algordanza’s laboratory to emerge some years later as a precious gem. To further investigate, I caught up with the man himself, Rinaldo Willy. A memorial diamond mounted on a ring Let’s get a bit technical. Study Finds Nearly All Scientific Papers Controlled By Six Corporations. When children grow up dreaming of becoming scientists they have the purest of aspirations and if they were left to pursue their own studies they would be able to accomplish the unimaginable.
Unfortunately, to become a member of the scientific community one has to jump through many bureaucratic hoops until they are eventually inducted into an establishment which is tightly regulated and directed by warmongers and control freak aristocrats. People spend half of their lives taking classes, passing tests and filling out applications in hopes that one day they can become a scientist and cure a disease. After years of struggling to make the cut they realize that there is no funding for their charitable projects and if they dare step outside of the established guidelines they will be exiled from the scientific community.
Hemingway. Death Focus.