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Science can't explain all

Science can't explain all

By Logan Wright

It's time to cut to the chase with a look at the top ten things that science just can't explain - yet. No we're not talking minor mysteries like how Keith Richards is still walking, these are the biggies. Logan Wright ponders the questions that have still got us baffled.

(click on the links for the inside story)

10. The WOW! signal
Wow, a secret message from outer space! Twenty years on and still no nearer an answer.
9. Pioneer's Funky Voyage
The creators of these deviant probes are ripping their hair out trying to understand what went wrong.
8. Female Orgasms
After a whole lot of thinking, biology’s best minds are still confused.
7. Dark Energy
The universe is a dark, dark place, which makes it ruddy difficult to study.
6. The Speed of Light
Faster than a speeding photon: is it possible? Einstein stays no, but does everyone else?
5. The Placebo Effect
Take this pill and you’ll be cured, just as long as you believe me.
4. Cold Fusion
Can atoms get together and let off some steam without the sauna?
3. Yawning
Open your mouth and notice the shockingly fascinating mystery of the yawn.
2. Dark Matter
Just because you can’t see the WIMPs and MACHOs doesn’t mean they aren’t there.
1. What Came Before, What Will Come After
Wouldn't it be really boring if it was just blackness. However, anyone's guess is as good as ours.

More Top Tens:

Top Ten Weird Things Sent Into Space
Top Ten Geek Holidays
Top Ten Acronyms That Make Us Snigger

Your Say

"The article states, "In fact, a single yawn can increase your heart rate by as much as 30%" - isn't that reason enough to yawn? Certainly yawning gives us a bit of a rush experience, and maybe the reminder (when we see others) that we could perk up with a yawn, is enough to produce one. It is a self-induced suggestion, so it could be applied in most situations."

"Just because these things are yet to be explained, doesn't mean science 'cant' explain them."

"Just because you don't know or understand the scientific theories behind a phenomenom doesn't mean that science doesn't know better : lightspeed, dark matter, yawning, cold fusion, even placebo have reasonable and scientifically valid explanations... As for the last one, is a theology question, not a scientific one"
"Theology is a science, you idiot. That would make it a scientific question."

"Jeff, theology is not science because you cannot use the scientific method. Just because something ends in -ology does not make it science (phrenology, for example)."

"What about what attracts magnets? It's a natural phenomenon."

"Hey Ravi, get with the program and crack a text book, you're 100 years late to the party."
"The Pioneer effect/anomaly has been explained as solar heat radiating from the side of each craft causing the trajectory deviation. Scientists have exceeded the speed of light many times in the lab."
We'll defer to Robert on the solar heat radiating thing, but exceeding the speed of light in the lab. Well yes, kinda, but not really. They use group velocities and long words. This article explains it a bit. - Ed

This, I believe, is the original article:
Scientists break speed of light:
"You forgot GRAVITY!!"
Mark Gilmore

"I yawn to stretch my lungs and I would think that's probably the same reason everyone else yawns. Why is this such a mystery to science?"
Jeff 2

"- Einstein never said lightspeed is constant, you just can't exceed whatever it is at that point in time/space.
- Placebos might work, in which case just give me the extra-strength placebo."

"Number 6 is invalid. What was observed was a pulse of packet of light travelling at a speed of -c/305. That is a negative group velocity. That is, the peak of the pulse actually exited the medium before the peak entered the medium. This does not violate causality or Einstein's relativity at all. The reason being that information is not stored in the peak of the pulse, and the law states that information cannot travel faster than the speed of light."
OMG. Tired of the female orgasm thing. It's simple. If women didn't have orgasms, then by the same function we wouldn't get aroused and we would not have sex with the mens.

11. Gravity

Other great stuff on the Null:

- Geek Pop - Our virtual science/music festival
- Brag - Check our column in the Telegraph
- Unsung heroes - Who invented the button?
- How it works - Wi-tricity: cordless power
- Gadgets - Weird stuff from the Null shop

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Title Image: Valber Cortez
For other image credits see individual articles

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31 Jul 2011
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