March 9, 2018

Weekend reads: What happened to Amelia Earhart? One researcher is '99%' certain he knows.

Daily Briefing

    Ben Palmer's reads

    Want to do better at sports? Just grunt, study says. Yelling and grunting in sports could improve performance, according to a study in PLOS One. For the study, researchers assessed how grunting affected the performance of 20 mixed martial arts practitioners. The study participants were asked to kick a bag designed to measure force, grunting for certain sessions, and remaining silent for others. They also had them grunt half the time they were kicking and remain silent the other half. According to the researchers, participants generated about 10% more force when they grunted.

    Study: Snakes are scary—but bees and dogs are the real danger. Of the 1,610 individuals killed in encounters with animals between 2008 and 2015, most were killed by hornets, wasps, and bees (478) or by dogs (272)—making those creatures far more deadly than snakes, spiders, and scorpions, which were linked to just 99 deaths altogether, according to a study in Wilderness & Environmental Medicine. Further, the researchers pointed out that children were at particular risk, with 95 children under age 10 killed by dogs over the study period. Jared Forrester, the lead author on the study and a surgical resident at Stanford University, said, "[I]t's usually family dogs or dogs known to the children who are doing the killing. It's up to public health professionals and parents to prevent these interactions."

    Rachel Schulze's reads

    The mystery of Amelia Earhart's disappearance may have been solved. A researcher says it's "99% likely" that bones found on an uninhabited pacific island are those of Amelia Earhart, who disappeared, along with her navigator, over the Pacific in 1937. When the remains were first discovered in the 1940s, an expert posited that they were those of a middle-aged man. However, Richard Jantz, an anthropology professor at the University of Tennessee, using measurements based on a newly available photograph of Earhart, disputes the old theory, saying the bones are Earhart's. Jantz also noted that a piece of a woman's shoe and a box that had held a navigation instrument were also found on the same island as the bones.

    Meet the McVegan, available in Scandinavia.  McDonald's has introduced a vegan hamburger in Sweden and Finland—and so far, people seem to like it. Sidsel Overgaard writing for NPR's "The Salt," describes the burger, dubbed the McVegan, as "firm, weighty, a tiny bit smoky with a strange—but not unpleasant—note of instant ramen." Her family, which usually eats meat at McDonald's, dubbed the McVegan "very tolerable" and "in the middle," While Overgaard herself called the patty "good." A self-described "meat guy" at the store called the patty "a good experience." McDonald's hasn't said anything about plans to bring the vegan option to the U.S. market.

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