Sunday, January 30, 2011

13 Unsolved Scientific Puzzles!


We can only account for 4 per cent of the cosmos

If you’re wondering what the LHC might do for you, how’s this: it might just find a whole quarter of the universe. The collider is hoping to create some particles of what physicists call "dark matter", an enigma that is thought to make up roughly 25 per cent of the universe. Then there is the "dark energy", a mysterious force that seems to be ripping space and time apart. In total, a whopping 96 per cent of the universe has gone AWOL. Unless, that is, we’ve got our maths all wrong. Watch this space.

Times Archive: Pioneer 11 arrival at Saturn, 1974


Destabilising our view of the universe

A decade ago, we discovered that the fundamental constants of physics might not be so constant after all. These are the numbers that describe just how strong the forces of nature are, and make the laws of physics work when we use them to describe the processes of nature. Light that has travelled across the universe from distant stars tells us those laws might have been different in the past. Though the physical laws and constants have helped us define and tame the natural world, they might be an illusion.


Nuclear energy without the drama

In 1989, the world was rocked by claims that you could release nuclear energy without a catastrophic explosion. Various failures to replicate or explain these results soon ended the careers of the scientists involved. But, despite what you might have heard, "cold fusion" never really went away. Over a 10-year period from 1989, US navy labs ran more than 200 experiments to investigate whether nuclear reactions generating more energy than they consume - supposedly only possible inside stars - can occur at room temperature. Numerous researchers have since pronounced themselves believers. With controllable cold fusion, many of the world’s energy problems would melt away: no wonder the US Department of Energy is interested again.


Are you more than just a bag of chemicals?

Are you more than the sum of the inanimate chemicals that make up your body? What turns a living tree into a lifeless piece of wood? No one knows. Researchers have even given up trying to define what life is. But they are still trying to understand it - by making it from scratch. In labs across the world, people are taking the raw materials of living things and trying to put them together in a way that makes them come alive. In an effort to resolve the anomalous nature of life, the idea of scientists playing God has taken a whole new turn. Times Archive: Dr Edmund Leach on when scientists play God, 1968


NASA scientists found evidence for life on Mars. Then they changed their minds

On July 20, 1976, the Viking landers scooped up some Martian soil and mixed it with radioactive nutrients. The mission’s scientists all agreed that if radioactive methane was released from the soil, something must be eating the nutrients - and there must be life on Mars. The experiment gave a positive result, but NASA denied an official detection of Martian life. Today, there is even more evidence that something is creating methane on Mars. Is it life? The Viking experiment suggests it was. Martin Rees, England’s astronomer royal, calls the search for extraterrestrial life the most important scientific endeavour of our time. But have we already found it? Times Archive: Spacecraft evidence suggests life on Mars was possible, 1976


Has ET already been in touch?

It was an electromagnetic pulse that came from the direction of the Sagittarius constellation. It lasted 37 seconds and had exactly the characteristics predicted for an alien signal. Maybe that’s why, on 15 August 1977 it caused astronomer Jerry Ehman to scrawl "Wow!" on the printout from Big Ear, Ohio State University’s radio telescope in Delaware. The nearest star in that direction is 220 light years away. If that really is where is came from, it would have had to be a pretty powerful astronomical event - or an advanced alien civilisation using an astonishingly large and powerful transmitter. More than 30 years later, its origin remains a mystery. Times Archive: ET, The Extra Terrestrial, The Times review 1982


It’s a freak that could rewrite the story of life

Mimivirus is sitting in a freezer in Marseille. Around thirty times bigger than the rhinovirus that gives you a common cold, it is by far the biggest virus known to science. But this virus’s biggest impact won’t be on the healthcare systems of the globe. It will be, most likely, on the history of life on Earth. Mimivirus doesn’t fit with the established story of how life on Earth got going. Mimi has a genome that, in parts, looks like yours. Mimivirus seems to be part of the story of life on Earth. It may even make us rewrite it.


Evolution’s problem with self-destruction

Why must we die? It is a question that splits biologists, and over the years, theories have been batted back and forth as new evidence comes to light. One answer is that death is simply necessary - to avoid overcrowding, for instance. But evolution doesn’t - can’t - select for a "death switch" because evolution is supposed to be all about the inpidual. And yet there does seem to be a death switch: researchers have managed to locate genetic switches that massively extend the lifespan of some nematode worms. Can we solve the riddle of death? Times Archive: Why die? Experiments in immortality, 1921

10. SEX

There are better ways to reproduce

Sex is everywhere, but no one knows why. It is a question that "better scientists than I have spent book after book failing to answer," says Richard Dawkins. To Charles Darwin, the reason for the prevalence of sexual reproduction was "hidden in darkness". All the arguments in favour of sexual reproduction are countered by stronger arguments in favour of self-cloning: asexual reproduction, where an organism produces a copy of itself, is a much more efficient way to pass your genes down to the next generation. There’s no proof that sex makes a species more resilient, or better placed to cope with change. Why is it still around? Times Archive: Darwin on the Descent of Man, 1871 Part 1 Part 2


Your decisions are not your own

Our gut instinct, our experience, is that we make the decisions to move, to think, to eat, to steal, to lie, to punch and kick. We have constructed the entire edifice of our civilisation on this idea. But science says this free will is a delusion. According to the world’s best neuroscientists, we are brain-machines. Our brains create the sense that somewhere within them is the "you" that makes decisions. But it is an illusion; there is no ghost in the machine. What does this mean for our sense of self? And for our morality - can we prosecute people for acts over which they had no conscious control? Times Archive: Necessity and free will, 1877


Who’s being deceived?

The placebo effect used to be thought of as just a manipulation, a mind-trick. Doctors wore white coats, spoke in soothing tones, exuding confidence and medical know-how, and if they told you a pill would make you better, it would. By the time you found out it was just a sugar pill, you were feeling great, so who cares? Well, lots of people, actually, because our new understanding of placebo is messing up medicine. Some prescription drugs that were judged to perform "better than placebo" in clinical trials don’t work unless you know you’re taking them. All in all, the gold standard of medicine, the placebo-controlled clinical trial, is looking a little peaky. Times Archive: Science report: Endorphins and the placebo effect, 1978


It’s patently absurd, so why won’t it go away?

Homeopathy’s claim is that you can take a substance of dubious properties, dilute it to the point where there are no molecules of the original substance left in the sample you have, and still use it to heal sickness. Sir John Forbes, the physician to Queen Victoria’s household, called it "an outrage to human reason." There is no justification in all of science for this idea — and yet there remains some slim evidence that homeopathy works. How can this be? Times Archive: Advertisement: The New Homoeopathy, 1914
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Tuesday, January 25, 2011

The Roanoke Colony Mystery: Still Unsolved After Four Centuries

The island of Roanoke in North Carolina holds the secret to the baffling disappearance of a band of English settlers in the late sixteenth century. The early colony simply vanished without trace, and their fate has intrigued and baffled historians ever since.

The story starts in 1587, with the second attempt to establish a British colony on Roanoke Island. Two years earlier, English explorer Sir Walter Raleigh made an unsuccessful bid to establish a settlement on the Island, sponsoring an all-male colony which initially integrated well with the Native Americans already living there. However, the harmony didn’t last as the brusque manner of colony commander Sir Ralph Lane soon angered the local tribe. To compound the colony’s problems, supply ships failed to show leaving them hungry and disillusioned, so when Raleigh dropped in on the colonists in 1586 after a trip to the West Indies, they elected to join him on the voyage home to Britain. But, because the New World offered such potential profits, the English tried again in August 1587, and it is the settlement that was established by 115 men, women and children that is the subject of the Roanoke colony mystery.

Very soon after setting up the colony its governor - artist John White - returned to England with the intention of immediately returning with much needed supplies. However, due to the war with Spain he was prevented from setting sail for three years. When he finally arrived back at Roanoke in August 1590 he came across a totally deserted colony, with only one clue as to where the inhabitants had gone; the word “Croatoan” - the name of the friendly tribe that lived on the south of the island - was carved in a tree. However, despite White spending the rest of his life searching, no trace of the colonists was ever found.

Theories by historians include that they may have been killed by the local Croatoan tribe, or that, tired of waiting for supplies and feeling abandoned, they moved inland and married into other Native American tribes. Another supposition is that they were murdered by Spanish troops on a northern sojourn from Florida. Their fate may never be known and any evidence that may have supplied clues is now long gone. The site of their inhabitation was soon overgrown by vegetation and has now been lost even to the point where historians still debate the original location.

Some argue that the doomed settlement is now under water some half a mile out to sea, as the coastline has shifted significantly since the sixteenth century. With the location of the settlement unknown, it is impossible to dig for clues. Many people have travelled to the region hoping to find some trace of the colony, and if you fancy joining their ranks, make sure that you locate a hotel in Roanoke near the north of the Island, where the settlement allegedly stood. Who knows? You might be the one who finally unlocks the secret to the ill-fated Roanoke colony.

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Thursday, January 20, 2011

The Mystery of the Headless Emperor

Anybody who has been to the Tower of London will know that King Henry 8th chopped off the head of his wife Anne Boleyn because she did not produce a son for him. It is said that the ghost of Anne Boleyn walks at midnight the building known as the Bloody Tower, "with her head tucked underneath her arm," as the song says. Some people believe that you might see the ghost of the Qing emperor, Yongzhen, walking around his mausoleum, Tailing, at the Western Tombs, near Beijing, with his head tucked under his arm. If you are ever lucky enough to see this awesome spectre grab it quickly, for the head that he carries is made of solid gold.

However, in this article I am talking about mysteries, and the first mystery about the Yongzhen emperor is why, against tradition, he ignored time-honoured protocol and chose a tomb site 100 kilometres away from that of his grandfather, Shunzhi (Fulin), and his father Kangxi. One theory that seems feasible is, having unscrupulously manoeuvred himself onto the throne and mercilessly persecuted his royal brothers and insiders, Yongzheng was loath to face his forefathers in the nether world. Does that seem reasonable?

Yongzheng was the most controversial of all the Qing emperors. The circumstances surrounding his enthronement and death are still a mystery and a matter for conjecture. His father, Emperor Kangxi (1654-1722), ruled for 61 years, and from more than 50 concubines had fathered 20 daughters and 35 sons, 24 of whom survived into adulthood. Kangxi's wealth of male issue made choosing a crown prince a difficult matter for not many of the 24 surviving sons seemed to be of the stuff that emperors are made of. Of these sons, only the second (the Crown Prince Yunreng), the fourth (Prince Yong) and the eighth (Prince Lian) and possibly the fourteenth were considered competent successors to the throne. Prince Yunren and Prince Lian actively formed their respective cliques, but Prince Yong maintained a modest stance and a low profile. He kept his distance from official circles, using spies to keep him up-to-date on his rivals' activities.

The first to fall in the struggle for the throne was the Crown Prince of the previous three decades. He had a strong clique to support him and was overly aggressive in his intent to succeed Kangxi, but he upset his father who eventually deposed him. It was then Prince Lian's turn to conspire, and he did so in a manner no less ruthless than his brother. Enraged, Kangxi put him under house arrest and executed his main conspirators. In an effort to contain the power struggle, he restored the Crown Prince, but was forced to depose him a second time. The old emperor then considered his fourth and 14th sons - both full-blood brothers - as imperial candidates.

Kangxi died in the Changchun Garden in western Beijing in December 1722. Seven days later, Longkedo, commander of the capital garrison, made an announcement claiming that Kangxi's last oral decree before expiring was that the competent character of the fourth prince, Prince Yong, made him suitable to be his successor and to rule the empire. Days later, he produced a written decree to the same effect, claiming that the deceased emperor had actually written the decree a few years previously. Hmm!

Beijing buzzed with rumours: some said that Longkedo had fabricated the imperial decree; others said that the fourteen son had been selected and that Yongzheng, or at least

Fig 26.2 The Yongzhen Emperor.
somebody, had altered the decree to read the "4th son," rather than "14th son." (Fourteen ?? shísì) to "to four" (?? yúsì).

This is doubtful especially considering that the character ? wasn't widely used on official documents during the Qing Dynasty. Instead the character ?  was used more often. Secondly, Qing tradition insists that the will be executed in both Manchu and Chinese, and Manchu writing is much harder, and in this case impossible, to modify. Furthermore, princes in the Qing Dynasty are referred to as the Emperor's son in the order which they were born. For example, "The Emperor's Fourth Son" Therefore, there is much doubt to the theory that Yongzhen changed the decree stating that he was the one to ascend to the throne. Even so, precisely how Yongzhen succeeded to the throne is still a mystery.

Immediately after his ascension, Zhongzhen imposed martial law, which forbade anyone from entering the capital. The 14th prince was thus unable to attend his father's funeral, or contest the accession.

It is not appropriate to discuss Yongzhen's reign here, but it is more appropriate to jump to his death, which was sudden and unexpected and occurred under mysterious circumstances. The imperial court did not specify the cause of his sudden demise, and consequently rumours were rife. Many of these suggested that he had been murdered. However, the most popular of these rumours was that because Yongzheng had ordered a considerable number of executions during his rule, he had made many enemies, one of whom being an old foe named Lu Siniang. A story arose that Lu had assassinated and beheaded the emperor. The rumour was a juicy one. However, it went further. It asserted that when the emperor was buried at the Tailing Mausoleum an artificial head had been placed on the mutilated cadaver so that he could enter heaven with a whole body. Furthermore, it was alleged that this artificial head was made of solid gold! If you are going to spread a rumour you might just as well spread a good one.

A survey of the Western Qing Tombs made in 1980 indicated that Yongzhen's burial chamber, Tailing, had been plundered. Relevant departments reported this to the State Administration of Cultural Heritage, requesting restorative excavation. When digging commenced, reporters from various agencies excitedly gathered on the site, expecting an answer to the mystery of the "gold head." However, upon reaching a two-meter depth of excavation it was quite apparent that the tomb mound had not been touched. The digging was immediately stopped in order to conserve the underground palace. Therefore, the mystery of the "gold head" remains unsolved.

But what do modern historians think about the mysterious death of Zhongzhen? Extant historical documents suggest that Yongzheng died from accidentally or inadvertently taking poisoned medicine, probably Daoist elixirs of Longevity, and was neither murdered nor beheaded. However, the popular story persists, and many people are still convinced there is a gold head attached to the body of the Zhongzhen Emperor in his Tailing Tomb. As I said, if you see his ghost walking with his head under his arm, grab it. It is probably valuable.

[1] In London, England

Roy Bates has asserted his right under the Copyright, Designs and Patents Act 1988 to be identified as the author of this work

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Saturday, January 15, 2011

Know the Shocking Unexplained Mysteries as Well as Paranormal Incidences at Profiling the Unexplained

Humans are no doubt the most important creation of God. They are known for their intelligence and are regarded as the one who are in a position to do anything they want. It is often considered that nothing is impossible for humans. Humans are no doubt the most powerful creations who are capable to even destroy the whole world. Thus it looks like they are in a position to control everything but is it true?

Generally it be termed as true, but there are several unexplained mysteries as well as the paranormal incidences that make this sentence false.

History is said to have covered several things in its heart. There are several unexplained mysteries that compel one to believe that there is something even more powerful than humans.

There are several paranormal incidences that are enough to make one think about the life that is not visible in the eyes of normal man. The site by name of Profiling the Unexplained is created with a purpose to throw light on the other world. The purpose of its creation is to make one familiar about the topics of the paranormal as well as the unexplained mysteries.

There are several pages included in the site from where you can have the interesting information on several aspects that are paranormal as well as you can also have information on UFO’s as well as on unexplained mysteries and worth to mention several cases.

There are several incidences mentioned that are enough to make you bite your nails. The best part is that there are not just stories rather they are the incidences that carry some sort of proof with them. If you are interested in knowing about the unsolved crime cases, then too it is the perfect site meant for you. In order to increase the interest of the user, the site is built so as to include the cases or things not just from one place or country rather from all over the world.

It is a fact that internet is an ocean so there are abundant of materials related to the matter available on it just like what is published in the site. Then what is so important in this site?

The answer to this question is that this site is itself an ocean for the information and incidences related to unexplained mysteries as well as the paranormal incidences. In addition it contains the incidences that have some evidences associated with them for example the Unexplained Mysteries of the Miracles of Lourdes is there on the site with full description as well as the story. In order to add importance of the incidence even the facts are included so as to make the incident as real as possible.

Unlike other sites, where the motive is just to put any content and attract visitors this site is produced in order to make people truly aware of the cases that happened in the past and that have some sort of importance associated with them. There are several posts, articles as well as forums so as to have enormous views on the topic.

With the help of forums it is easy to have thousands of views on the topic so as to judge the relevance of the post. In addition, there is also facility of live chat available with the site so as to make one know the query for every doubt.
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Monday, January 10, 2011

Mysteries That Exist Behind Unexplained Mysteries and Haunting Unsolved

It is a fact that there are several changes that are taking place with time. With time many things have changed right from living and eating habits of the person to the living standard of the people. However one more thing is there that is changed with time, though not to the large extent. It is old beliefs and thoughts of people regarding the unexplained mysteries as well as the haunting unsolved mysteries or incidences.

In the past, it was common to find most of the people believe in ghosts and several other superstitious things but now-a-days if a person believes on such things than it is taken as something unusual. Even several members of the society laugh on that person. Thus at present time, there are quite less people who believe on unexplained mysteries as well as the haunting unsolved incidences.

There are several people who are having belief on this topic and several others who are against this topic so it is generally taken as a question of debate.

In order to answer several unsolved questions a site is there that can be termed as the best site to enable you know the other side of the life. It is clearly revealed in the site that there are several supernatural powers that are influencing several people all around.

The site provides several stories based on facts that reveal that there are several forces in existence that are not known to everyone. Not only that they also have the power that is enough to make one think what is the force acting against the strength of such force.

It is created in order to throw light on the other world as well as to enable people to share their views and experiences. Now-a-days with modernization, if one talks about black magic and spiritual things, then it is more taken as a matter of joke. In order to help such people, the site is meant so that one can put his/her views easily on the site.

There are many posts on unexplained mysteries as well as the haunting unsolved, in order to make people know about the experiences as well as stories of others. In addition there is facility of live chat that helps in clearing doubts if any. Not only that, in order to enable people to put their views, there is facility of forums as well. Thus one can communicate his/her opinion by way of forums in order to have clear opinion without any influence.

Further the quality of content that is used in the site is so perfect that the user gets an impression of reading quality content. The stories that are displayed in the site are with facts so as to make the people know that it in not just an illusion. In addition several pictures are also there in the site that can work as the perfect evidence for the situation that has actually happened. Thus if you are interested in revealing the other world and want to know or express something that is hard to believe for a common man then this site is no doubt the best option for you.

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Wednesday, January 5, 2011

Do You Want to Know About the Unexplained Mysteries and Haunting Unsolved? Go for Profiling the Unexplained!

With modern era, every thing is changing- the living standard of the people, their living style, their habits as well as their beliefs. It was earlier that people believe in superstitions, rituals and many other things that are considered hallucination in today’s language. But the question that emerges were they really illusions? Was there nothing like that in existence?

The answer to these and many other questions are difficult to find but still there are several facts available that are enough to make one know that there was something in the past and there is something present today as well.

There are several unexplained mysteries as well as haunting unsolved stories or incidences available that are enough to compel one think about their existence.

In order to decrease the gap between one’s imagination and real facts about these unexplained mysteries there are enough sites available on the net. However the one that is entirely different and extraordinary is

There are several points that make this site different from rest of the sites. They are as under:

1. Presentation: For any site or material to be influential, the most important thing is the presentation. This site is having the best presentation and there are enough facts supported in order to make the user compel to put stress on the thought of unexplained mysteries as well as the haunting unsolved.

2. Material or Content: Another most important feature that makes this site different from others is its magnificent content. The content here includes the matter that has actually happened. In addition in order to have variety of contents there are several users to put their posts as well.

3. Facts behind the unexplained mysteries or haunting unsolved: Several stories or incidences as depicted here carry facts behind them. It is quite unique feature that is not available with most of the sites. The facts associated inform the user about the truth behind them.

4. Feature of forums or chats available: The best part of this site is that there is feature of forums as well as online chat available. With the help of forums it is possible to form unbiased opinion on anything. Also with the help of chat it is possible to get away from any of the doubt that the user is having.

5. Good quantity as well as quality of content: There are several posts from several authors related to unexplained mysteries as well as the haunting unsolved. With such large variety and quality of content, the user generally finds him in the other world etc.

Thus there are several plus points associated with this site and for this reason only it is having such popularity that is dream from any other site.

The purpose of this site is to make people aware about the unexplained mysteries as well as paranormal facts. The site is also having a good collection of various haunting places that you can visit if you desire. There are several incidences that would let you know the opinion of other people about such different things.

There are stories related to black magic as well as other related things that are not considered true now-a-days. With the help of various stories as well as haunting unsolved mysteries, you can see other world in the eyes of those who have experienced them by own.

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