Most Popular myths in Science (45)

1 Name: Anonymous Scientist : 2007-01-22 17:19 ID:WSYwUIhE

Most Popular Myths in Science

1. Chickens can live without a head
Average Rating: 3.6

2. Water drains backwards in the Southern Hemisphere due to the Earth's rotation
Average Rating: 3.5

3. There is no gravity in space
Average Rating: 3.5

4. Humans use only 10 percent of their brains
Average Rating: 3.5

5. Eating a poppy seed bagel mimics opium use
Average Rating: 3.5

6. A penny dropped from the top of a tall building could kill a pedestrian
Average Rating: 3.5

7. Adults don't grow new brain cells
Average Rating: 3.4

8. Chicken soup can cure the common cold
Average Rating: 3.4

9. Yawning is "contagious"
Average Rating: 3.4

10. Lightning never strikes the same place twice
Average Rating: 3.4

11. A dog's mouth is cleaner than a human's
Average Rating: 3.3

12. Hair and fingernails continue growing after death
Average Rating: 3.3

13. A falling cat will always land on its feet
Average Rating: 3.3

14. Men think about sex every seven seconds
Average Rating 3.3

15. You get less wet by running in the rain
Average Rating: 3.3

16. The five second rule
Average Rating: 3.2

17. Animals can predict natural disasters
Average Rating: 3.2

18. Seasons are caused by the Earth's proximity to the sun
Average Rating: 3.2

19. The Great Wall of China is the only manmade structure visible from space
Average Rating: 3.1

20. It takes seven years to digest gum
Average Rating: 2.9

2 Name: Anonymous Scientist : 2007-01-22 18:08 ID:iqPyz05s

>Chickens can live without a head

They do... for a little while. Not a real myth.

>Yawning is "contagious"

It is. Not a myth either, unless one wants to play with words.

>Animals can predict natural disasters

They can sense/smell something is wrong, yeah. Like a forest fire. Unless the survey question was "Is it scientifically proven that animals possess a mysterious sixth sense allowing them to predict natural disasters?", this is not a myth.

Misleading title, misleading questions or massaged article for shock value.

3 Name: Anonymous Scientist : 2007-01-22 18:27 ID:Heaven

> You get less wet by running in the rain

Simple mathematical analysis shows this to be entirely true. The minimum wetness would be achieved when moving at infinite speed through the rain.

A decent approximation of the amount of rain deposited onto a person is moving through entirely vertical rain is: rain density * ( distance * frontal area + time spent in rain * rain speed * top area ) = rain density * distance * ( frontal area + top area * rain speed / forward speed).

It is also pretty obvious from the fact that if you stand around in the rain, you get pretty damn wet.

4 Name: Anonymous Scientist : 2007-01-22 23:39 ID:Heaven

>They do... for a little while. Not a real myth.

Depends on the definition of "living".

5 Name: Anonymous Scientist : 2007-01-22 23:51 ID:K/Xlcq/l

Well, to their credit, the site does list a lot of these as being entirely true. The use of "myth" is confusing, but techincally correct. The dictionary gives:

2. A popular belief or story that has become associated with a person, institution, or occurrence, especially one considered to illustrate a cultural ideal: a star whose fame turned her into a myth; the pioneer myth of suburbia.
3. A fiction or half-truth, especially one that forms part of an ideology.

They're using it in sense 2, whereas most people will likely read it as sense 3.

6 Name: sega : 2007-01-25 04:51 ID:htnCkXXf

You will have to take into account that more water gets on the frontal area when you are moving faster. You only took speed into account for the top area.

7 Name: Anonymous Scientist : 2007-01-25 12:26 ID:r/gdwkdj


What do you think the "rain density * distance * frontal area" term is? Well, I guess left out a step in the derivation of that:

rain density * frontal area * speed * time spent in rain = rain density * frontal area * speed * distance / speed = rain density * frontal area * distance.

8 Name: Anonymous Scientist : 2007-01-25 12:40 ID:/OfOb83c

when you move at infinite speed, you catch all the rain in the air that is on your track. your front will get very wet.

I think you actually catch more water when you go faster. however, it is still practical to run, rather than walk because you'll be getting wet for a shorter period of time. (Which is useful only if you are going home or somewhere where you can change your clothes)

*reporting live from the Netherlands, country of rain.

9 Name: Anonymous Scientist : 2007-01-25 13:52 ID:r/gdwkdj


You catch that same amount of rain no matter what speed you move at. However, when moving at less than infinite speed, you also catch rain falling on you from above. I already posted the maths for that in >>3.

10 Name: Anonymous Scientist : 2007-01-28 03:01 ID:htnCkXXf

That makes sense I think.

11 Name: Anonymous Scientist : 2007-02-20 17:56 ID:fN2g/f/8

>5. Eating a poppy seed bagel mimics opium use

Average Rating: 3.5

This one is absolutely true. There are documented cases. Also, I hate to cite Mythbusters as it's not entirely scientific, but on the show they took a drug test, passed, ate a poppyseed bagel, took the same drug test, and failed. Seems pretty conclusive to me. But I know there are other documented cases besides that.

12 Name: Anonymous Scientist : 2007-02-20 17:59 ID:fN2g/f/8

I actually looked at the website, and realized they were saying the myth is that you get the same physical effects from a poppy-seed bagel as you do from ingesting opium (which I had never heard before now, and agree is false.) The titling of the myth is misleading though, it makes you think they're referring to the drug test.

13 Name: Anonymous Scientist : 2007-02-26 09:30 ID:Heaven

actually it would be at the speed of light. any faster than that and you wouldn't actually be moving through the rain.

14 Name: Anonymous Scientist : 2007-03-18 23:52 ID:Heaven


I believer there was a chicken that lived for a significant amount of time without a head. This was more the result of poor aim though. The farmer beheaded the chicken, but failed to sever the brain stem from the spinal cord as well as failing to strike the jugular (clotting stopped the rest of the bleeding). The chicken lived, traveling as a sort of sideshow attraction.

Here it is, Mike the Headless Chicken

15 Name: Anonymous Scientist : 2007-04-08 14:30 ID:Heaven

Oh the irony, naming a headless chicken "Mike".

16 Name: Anonymous Scientist : 2007-04-30 03:50 ID:QEabHJ94


It's not really misleading. When people think opium use they think of getting high, not urine testing. You're reading too much into the title.

17 Name: Anonymous Scientist : 2007-05-02 14:09 ID:DrW1DAVF

>> 11. A dog's mouth is cleaner than a human's

Average Rating: 3.3

>> 12. Hair and fingernails continue growing after death

Average Rating: 3.3

18 Name: Anonymous Scientist : 2007-05-02 22:47 ID:Heaven


19 Name: Anonymous Scientist : 2007-05-27 19:41 ID:/5rnKKx9

The most popular myth in science ... that should be Creationism!

20 Name: Anonymous Scientist : 2007-05-28 05:11 ID:cvXpmP9S

While certainly a myth, creationism is hardly "in science."

21 Name: Anonymous Scientist : 2007-06-12 22:21 ID:hPuGc9oX


Creationism keeps violating science in certain circles, does that count?

22 Name: Anonymous Scientist : 2007-06-16 21:02 ID:Heaven

22 getting in a science religion battle royal!

23 Name: Anonymous Scientist : 2007-07-30 14:50 ID:OYzqixP4

>>19 creationism exist, but not by the so-called GOD, it's by nature, and natural evolution

24 Name: Anonymous Scientist : 2007-07-31 23:42 ID:Heaven

that, is naturalism

25 Name: Anonymous Scientist : 2007-08-28 19:41 ID:jT9IWE15

God... You're all athiests.... @.@

26 Name: Anonymous Scientist : 2007-08-28 20:14 ID:pIss5JGr

Move at infinite speed = instant teleportation ---> you won't catch a single drop of water!

27 Name: Anonymous Scientist : 2007-08-28 20:49 ID:6tFO5KBb


This map indicates the percentage of irreligion in the world.
We've come a long way, but we've still got a while to go in our journey towards purple.

28 Name: God : 2007-09-02 04:03 ID:Heaven

Yes, I don't even believe in myself. Ironic? Not really.

29 Name: Anonymous Scientist : 2007-09-14 00:35 ID:yjRm8hZR


>Move at infinite speed = instant teleportation

No. it means that you are simultaneously at all points on your path, which happens to be infinitely long as well. You will catch all the raindrops in your path. I think you will also die, but that's just a hunch that I can't back up theoretically.

30 Name: Anonymous Scientist : 2007-09-27 08:43 ID:fEWaMIiI


Actually, no, I'm a a believer in Intelligent Design, ie, Aliens seeding the planet. Yes, I really do, and no I'm not on anything.

For what purpose??? I don't know. As slaves? As an experiment? Who knows, but I also believe in God, so I reackon there's someting out there.

31 Name: SunshinePaladin : 2007-09-29 01:19 ID:+EefjZKz

>19. The Great Wall of China is the only manmade structure visible from space.

The myth is:

>The Great Wall of China is visible from space.

it's not...
as comparison you cant see a thread from a mile, eh?

32 Name: Anonymous Scientist : 2007-09-29 13:45 ID:oyN655GL

"Space"? Do they mean "outer space"? What about low orbit satellites?

33 Name: Anonymous Scientist : 2007-10-07 21:03 ID:c/UJrTBL

>The Great Wall of China is visible from space.

Yes, it is

> The Great Wall of China is the only manmade structure visible from space.

No, It's not.

> Any number of man-made structures can be seen from space, provided we construe "structure" to mean "anything built." Many of these are things that look like long, straight lines when seen from afar, such as highways, railroads, canals, and of course walls. If the orbit is low enough you can see even more.
> the earth as seen from the moon takes up less than one degree of arc in the sky... No man-made detail can be seen at all; sometimes even the continents are barely distinguishable.

34 Name: Anonymous Scientist : 2007-10-15 08:19 ID:YdZ9d6lT

some of that stuff is bullcrap or a twist of wording

eg "animals can predict natural disasters"

if you say "do they have an esp sense that tells em 'in 1 hour there will be a quake'" then i would say no..its not like that

but if you say "predict as in they can sense a natural disaster approaching or can detect an imminent natural disaster" then yes i would agree, some bird species have been known to completely vacate areas which have an impending natural disaster up to 12 hours before occurance.

35 Name: Anonymous Scientist : 2007-11-02 13:28 ID:+vB5uk+D

15. You get less wet by running in the rain


36 Name: Anonymous Scientist : 2007-11-03 21:57 ID:c/UJrTBL

You'll get soaked either way.

37 Name: Anonymous Scientist : 2007-11-17 13:50 ID:HiyGM0rR

>>30 I'm heavily leaning towards thinking aliens seeded the planet for some reason too, as well as beleiving in divinity.
Do you maybe could plz link to any info/theories etc on the alien theory? It's something I've been wanting to look into some more.

38 Name: Anonymous Scientist : 2007-11-17 14:39 ID:oyN655GL

>>37 There is a lot of stuff out there on the web.
Here is one article (amongst many) I find interesting:

39 Name: Anonymous Scientist : 2007-11-29 18:59 ID:BhcgMTqu

I've met a surprising number of people who think the Earth's mantle (or, more properly, asthenosphere) is a liquid.

40 Name: Anonymous Scientist : 2007-11-30 01:03 ID:oyN655GL

>>39 Are you alluding to
No human has gone down deeper than 15 miles. But people "with connections" seem to be in favor of Hollow Earth (and other planets and moons being hollow as well.)

41 Name: Anonymous Geologist : 2007-11-30 13:40 ID:BhcgMTqu


No human has ever been that deep. Perhaps certain explorational drills have, but the pressure and temperatures at these depths prevent humans ever seeing them. However, modern earth & planetary science has ascertained the Earth's structure with a high degree of accuracy, thanks to geophysics: consult any basic geophysics publication for an overview.

I was alluding to the fact that the majority of the mantle is actually solid rock, as the high pressures encountered in the mantle prevent melting, so solid rock becomes highly plastic and ductile, and "flows" in effect.

42 Name: Anonymous Scientist : 2007-12-03 20:43 ID:se3WKZ0i

Think about this: Try to verrryyyyy slow in the rain. So slow that you take a whole week to get from point A to point B(supposing it keeps raining the whole week). If running would only take 10 seconds, believe me you will be much more soaked when taking a whole week.

43 Name: Anonymous Scientist : 2007-12-04 03:02 ID:yzckDXDG


That's both completely obvious and entirely illogical.
I would prefer to employ an umbrella.

44 Name: Anonymous Scientist : 2007-12-04 13:08 ID:v7BcZUMG

That depends. What if you run so fast you don't notice a puddle and fall into it? Then you would get quite wet.

45 Name: Anonymous Scientist : 2007-12-04 18:41 ID:JBG5KsFZ

Holy hell I know the guy who wrote that. I have a crackpot conspiracy video he was featured on. Of all the conspiracy theorists, he is by far the coolest, in so much that you can tell his insanity has reached the very depths of his mind

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