1. J.K. Rowling almost broke the Internet. She published a Harry Potter short story and civilization nearly ended.
2. A Turkish student has come up with a 3D printed cast that supposedly heals bones as much as 80% faster than conventional casts.
It’s pretty cool-looking.
3. Denny’s and Atari have teamed up to launch what may be the best retro app ever.
Denny’s has teamed up with Atari to release three of its classic games — Centipede, Asteroids and Breakout — on Denny’s mobile app, but with a branded twist. Asteroids, for instance, will be called Hashteroids, in a nod to Denny’s hash browns. In Asteroids, the object of the game is to destroy asteroids — which are replaced by hash browns destroyed by shooting ketchup from a spaceship-shaped bottle. Centipede is renamed Centipup, an homage to Denny’s pancakes, and Breakout is renamed Take-Out.
The campaign is for “Greatest Hits Remixed,” a new limited-time menu featuring some of Denny’s classics such as Moons Over My Hammy and the Grand Slam, though they are altered slightly. The Grand Slam meal will be “remixed” to the Red, White and Blue Slam, which includes pancakes with blueberries and a strawberry topping.
Whatever. All three of the games are very faithful recreations of the originals. The app has 8-bit bacon in the Takeout game. Bacon makes everything better.
4. Scientists have discovered what may have been the largest flying bird ever.
It had the wingspan of a small airplane.
With an estimated 20- to 24-foot wingspan, the extinct P. sandersi was twice the size of today’s biggest flying bird, the royal albatross, according to the National Evolutionary Synthesis Center in North Carolina.
Researchers believe the P. sandersi lived about 25 million to 28 million years ago.
Related at Vodkapundit: Move Over Little Bird, a Big Old Bird Is Moving In
5. The Hubble Space Telescope (disclosure: I used to work there) has been used to find a couple of new Kuiper Belt objects.
Scientists looking for targets beyond Pluto for NASA’s New Horizon’s spacecraft to visit will get more time on the Hubble Space Telescope, managers decided after a two-week pilot study revealed at least two candidate objects.
The New Horizons team had spent three fruitless years using ground-based telescopes to find a Kuiper Belt Object that will be within range of New Horizons after its July 14, 2015, flyby of Pluto. Last month, scientists got two weeks of observing time on Hubble for initial scans.
The deal was that if they found at least two candidates, they could have another 160 orbits worth of telescope time to ferret out a second suitable target for New Horizons.
Analysis of an initial 200 Hubble images, taken between June 16 and June 26, showed that at least two Kuiper Belt Objects might be within range of New Horizons.
The Kuiper Belt is basically the frozen outer fringe of the Solar System. It’s where building blocks from the formation of the Solar System are thought to be, more or less like the pile of crap that building contractors amass when they build a house.