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China bans April Fools’ day as Internet overflows with jokes

China bans April Fools’ day as Internet overflows with jokes

Reports that swear they're not April Fools' pranks claim China has banned April Fools' day, citing annoyance and incompatibility with the "western tradition." April Fools' day is, of course, a day for unabashed suspicion — it’s also fun, and companies have fully embraced it to release all sorts of amusing (and sometimes incredibly frustrating) jokes. China will have none of that, though; the nation’s state-run news agency has stated that April Fools' isn’t inline with its “cultural traditions, or socialist core values."

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Uber’s new in-app support replaces annoying emails

Uber’s new in-app support replaces annoying emails

Email support is annoying — at least when you’re calling, you eventually get to someone and know in real-time what’s happening on their end. Email support, though, is time consuming and involves a lot of waiting and guessing. Enter Uber’s newly transformed support system, one that is ditching email in favor of an in-app messaging feature that lets drivers and riders alike shoot off a quick note about their concerns.

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Newly created transparent wood paves way for greener homes

Newly created transparent wood paves way for greener homes

In what seems like a bit of modern day alchemy, researchers have managed to transform real wood into still-real transparent wood, giving it a somewhat cloudy appearance like roughed up acrylic or dry craft glue. According to the study, which was published in Biomacromolecules earlier this month, the researchers were able to achieve a level of transparency as high as 85-percent, and a haze level as low as 71-percent to create what they call “optically transparent wood.”

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Ice age puppies found preserved in Russia’s icy Yakutia

Ice age puppies found preserved in Russia’s icy Yakutia

A pair of puppies dating back to the Ice Age have been recovered from Yakutia, a frigid region in northern Russia. The discovery was first made back in 2011 by hunters seeking mammoth tusks; they saw the snout of one puppy visible through the permafrost and informed Mammoth Museum of the North-Eastern Federal University’s head of exhibitions Sergei Fyodorov. Five years have passed since, and researchers have announced that the puppies are so well preserved, they mark a new world's first.

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New blood test detects concussions days after they happen

New blood test detects concussions days after they happen

Concussions are a serious problem in the world of sports, particularly when it comes to youth sports — concussion symptoms are sometimes delayed in children (less commonly in adults, as well), meaning an evaluation immediately after an incident may not accurately reflect the nature of the injury. Researchers have discovered a way to deal with this, developing a new type of blood test that can identify whether someone has suffered a concussion up to a week after it happened.

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Jupiter asteroid impact caught on video

Jupiter asteroid impact caught on video

While NASA is busy keeping an eye out for asteroids buzzing our way, some others have their eyes set on distant planets, hoping to catch a little action of their own. Amateur astronomer Gerrit Kernbauer was successful in this mission, managing to record an impact on Jupiter — likely an asteroid or a comet slamming into its surface. The impact created a large enough blast of debris to be seen in the relatively fuzzy, jumpy video, and provides a fascinating look at a sliver of action elsewhere in the universe.

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New method identifies coffee cut with cheap, bitter beans

New method identifies coffee cut with cheap, bitter beans

For years, the fabled coffee apocalypse was predicted to come in the form of coffee shortages. As it turns out, though, this particular apocalyptical horse wears a mask and it resembles the real thing — counterfeit coffee, and the growing issue plaguing coffee lovers everywhere. Just like the wood-pulp cheese and fake olive oil, counterfeit coffee resembles the real thing but isn't what consumers think they're buying.

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NASA finds signs of an old frozen lake on Pluto

NASA finds signs of an old frozen lake on Pluto

NASA has released an image of what was likely a lake long, long ago in Pluto’s past. The image shows a frozen, somewhat random smooth patch on an otherwise rocky landscape, one that looks very similar to a lake or pond surrounded by hills and mountains. The image was taken by the space agency’s New Horizons spacecraft, which also found evidence of possible past liquid channels that flowed across the planet’s surface.

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Researchers find ‘frog foam’ can be used to treat wounds

Researchers find ‘frog foam’ can be used to treat wounds

It sounds a bit icky, but researchers are happy about it. The protein foam produced by Tungara frogs while mating is fully compatible with human cells, it turns out, and could be an excellent way to treat wounds -- particularly burns -- in the future. Such a discovery was made by with the University of Strathclyde, who found that the frog’s foam is “highly stable” and can be used to slow-release antibiotics and other medication.

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Mammoth skull found in Oklahoma sand pit

Mammoth skull found in Oklahoma sand pit

A giant mammoth skull has been unearthed in an Oklahoma sand pit, as well as fragments from a pair of tusks and some teeth. The skull is described as "partial," in that there are some pieces missing. However, images show that it is largely intact and is easily recognizable as a skull. No other skeletal parts are present around the skull, and there are no "cultural associations," according to the Oklahoma Archaeological Survey.

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Uber’s luring engineers with ‘Code on the Road’ game

Uber’s luring engineers with ‘Code on the Road’ game

Uber is trying to recruit engineers using a fun little coding game that pops up for some riders in some cities, the company has confirmed. Screenshots and reports of the game started cropping up on Twitter in recent days, and the company has since clarified its purpose for "Code on the Road," saying it's a brief way to test someone's coding skills and, potentially, find a new team member.

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Yellowstone hotspot had 12 ancient ‘super-eruptions’

Yellowstone hotspot had 12 ancient ‘super-eruptions’

Some really big eruptions happened during Yellowstone’s past, but they all may pale in comparison to a bunch of so-called “super eruptions” that took place in Idaho millions of years ago. According to researchers, these exceptionally massive eruptions happened between 8 and 12 million years ago, and were much, much larger than previously believed, eclipsing a bunch of ancient eruptions that happened in the same general region.

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