The world is despite its shortcomings a wondrous place and humans are by far the most interesting species on its surface. Every week we’ll sneak a peek into current events that made the weird side of the newspapers.
This week we’ll learn what it takes to survive a bear attack, that China bans windows, how e-cigarettes can help you quit smoking, that doing drugs and having lots of sex, coupled with sleepless nights could mean that you’re a genius, and finally, that happiness is illegal in Iran.
A woman who didn’t want to be identified was attacked by a bear after she got separated from her husband.
The event took place when they were out on a run near the Joint Base Elmendorf-Richardson in Anchorage, Alaska. The brown bear, defending her two cubs, mauled the woman and left her for dead. It’s still not clear if the woman was knocked unconscious or played dead.
Officials haven’t been able to establish for how long the woman was lying on the trail in the woods, but she eventually managed to get up on her feet and walk for at least two miles to get help. She was luckily spotted by a soldier driving in the area.
Her husband, who had turned back to look for her, was picked up by base security officers and reunited with his wife in the hospital. Despite lacerations to her neck, arms and legs, her condition has been described as stable.
This move comes as a serious blow to Microsoft which has long been plagued by sales woes in the country. One explanation for the action was that it was part of a notice on the use of energy-saving products.
Local news wire Xinhua reported that the ban was to ensure computer security after Microsoft ended support for its Windows XP operating system, which was widely used in the country. Neither the government nor Xinhua elaborated on how the ban supported the use of energy-saving products, or how it ensured security.
China has long been a troublesome market for Microsoft. Former CEO Steve Ballmer reportedly told employees in 2011 that, because of piracy, Microsoft earned less revenue in China than in the Netherlands even though computer sales matched those of the U.S.
A five-year study by University College London (UCL) suggests that e-cigarettes could help people kick their smoking habit.
Between 2009 and 2014, researchers at UCL, with funding from Cancer Research UK, surveyed almost 6,000 smokers who’d tried to quit without either prescription medications or professional support.
While only one-in-five e-cigarette users successfully quit the coffin-nails, that makes them 60 percent more likely to succeed than those trying to quit cold turkey or using nicotine patches or gum. The next step forward would be to find out how many would return to burning tobacco after they quit.
Previous studies have shown that e-cigs only had a marginal impact on people’s smoking habits, but these were focused on all smokers and not solely on those with an expressed desire to stop smoking.
Researchers in England looking at students have found that doing drugs, having lots of sex, and sleeping less could mean that you’re a smarter person.
Students at Oxford and Cambridge spend more on sex toys than their peers in other universities.
Also, smarter people are more likely to do drugs as part of expanding their horizons. A 2010 study that ran in Psychology Today also states that those with an IQ of 125 or higher are exponentially more likely to use drugs.
An academic paper entitled “Why The Night Owl Is More Intelligent,” published in the journal Psychology And Individual Differences, says that for several millennia humans have been largely conditioned to work during the day and sleep at night. As to those that buck the trend, the paper suggests “…that more intelligent individuals may be more likely to acquire and espouse evolutionarily novel values and preferences than less intelligent individuals.” The paper goes on to say that those who are more liberal and more inclined towards atheism are more likely to be intelligent, too.
Six Iranians have been arrested by police in Teheran after they posted a version of U.S. singer Pharrell Williams’ hit song ‘Happy’ on the Internet.
The YouTube clip shows three men and three unveiled women singing and dancing to the tune in the streets and on rooftops.
Teheran police chief Hossein Sajedinia called the video vulgar and said it “hurt public chastity” after it was released. It took police only a few hours to identify and arrest the six participants who have reportedly “confessed to their criminal acts.”
More than 10 years ago Iran introduced a ‘morality police’ unit to address “problems” of youth abandoning Islamic values. Since the 1979 revolution, women must cover themselves from head to toe and respect this dress code in public.