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Monday, 29 August 2016

TASTY TECH EYE CANDY OF THE WEEK XCVIII


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Tasty Tech Eye Candy of the Week (Aug. 28)
By Tracy Staedter,
Seeker, 28 August 2016.

An artificial wave lagoon, a robotic caterpillar and a "star in a jar" top off this week's tech gallery.

1. Artificial Wave Lagoon

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The Wave Park Group, a Perth, Australia-based company, recently presented a proposal to the city of Melville to turn an existing 54-acre sports and recreation destination into a wave park. The wave lagoon itself would occupy 5.7 acres and become the third park of its kind in the country.

2. Winning Solar Car

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This year, University of Michigan’s solar-powered car, the Aurum, won the American Solar Challenge race, finishing 11 hours ahead of the second placed car. The eight-day race began at Cuyahoga Valley National Park in Ohio and finished at Wind Cave National Part in North Dakota.

3. Airlander 10 Crashes

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What a bummer. After only 100 minutes of test flying, the world’s largest aircraft, Airlander 10, crashed during its second test run. No one was hurt, but the incident certainly delays Hybrid Air Vehicles’ attempt to build a helium-filled cargo ship capable of transporting 22,000-pound shipments around the world.

4. Fast-Flying Drone


Drone-maker Parrot’s new device, the Disco, is meant for people who just want to have fun. The ultralight 1.6-lb drone can fly 50 mph for 45 minutes at a time. Other drones peter out after 20 to 25 minutes.

5. Star in a Jar

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Plans for a next generation fusion device were revealed this week in the journal Nuclear Fusion. The research comes from physicists at the U.S. Department of Energy’s Princeton Plasma Physics Laboratory, and the plans include a US$94 million investment in the National Spherical Torus Experiment-Upgrade (NSTX-U), a giant fusion reactor that generates energy in a way similar to how stars like our own sun generate energy. Fusion involves subjecting hydrogen atoms to extreme heat and pressure until they fuse into helium atoms. The process creates energy that could be used to power just about everything in the world. Unlike fission, fusion doesn’t create giant amounts of radioactive waste either.

6. Lego-like Proteins Produce Colour Images

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By modifying tiny particles that naturally occur in cells, scientists found a way to improve upon ultrasound imaging. The particles are protein-shelled, gas-filled structures called gas vesicles. Caltech scientists developed ways to swap out the proteins on the surface like Legos to get the particles to behave in different ways.

For example, one protein causes the vesicle to attach to a certain kind of tissue cell, say a tumour cell. The scientists also figured how to alter the gas inside so that when an ultrasound image is taken, the particles show up in different colours. The technique could greatly improve a doctor’s ability to pinpoint the location of cancerous cells and target them for removal.

7. Bowl-shaped Stadium Naturally Cools

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In Dubai, summer temperatures reach upwards of 120 degrees Fahrenheit. Building a soccer stadium that can accommodate 60,000 and keep them cool is no small matter in that kind of heat. Instead of relying on air conditioning to do the job, architects Perkins + Will are designing the Mohammed bin Rashid Stadium with passive cooling features. For starters, the exterior will be made of perforated metal skin that allows air to pass through but keeps out blowing sand. Overhead, a translucent teflon-coated glass awning will reflect 75 percent of sunlight. Beneath the stadium, a large pool of water will cool the air and trees planted on the grounds will block hot winds.

8. Soft Robo-Caterpillar Wriggles

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This 0.6-in-long soft robotic caterpillar is made from a material called liquid crystal elastomer, which when shined with a light, moves in different ways. By using a modulated laser beam, scientists at the University of Warsaw were able to make this robotic caterpillar walk up slopes, squeeze through narrow spaces and even push objects that weighed 10 times its own weight.

9. Dyson’s Latest Fan

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Dyson’s newest bladeless fan, the Pure Hot+Cool Link, is able to trap 99.97 percent of the smallest airborne particles. Pollen, mould and bacteria are no match for the fan’s 360-degree Glass HEPA filter. The app-controlled device, which also cools and heats the air, can be ordered online starting September 6 for US$599.99.

10. Honeybot Teaches with VR

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A new robot being promoted as part of an IndieGoGo project is an interactive, Android-based robot that uses 3-D augmented reality to teach and entertain kids ages 3 to 8 years old. Called Honeybot, the device - designed by Chinese tech company Hui Yu - is meant to snag a child’s attention with its 3-D graphics, image and voice recognition and 200 audio and video programs.

Top image: Rendering of the Mohammed bin Rashid Stadium in Dubai. Credit: Perkins + Will via Designboom.

[Source: Seeker. Edited. Top image and some links added.]

Sunday, 28 August 2016

VIDEO: THE BATTERY THAT HAS LASTED 176 YEARS


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In a laboratory at Oxford University sits the Oxford Electric Bell, which has spent 176 years constantly ringing. And no-one's quite sure what the battery that powers it is made of...


Top image screen captured from the video.

[Source: Tom Scott via YouTube.]

INFOGRAPHIC: 10 DATA DO'S AND DON'TS FOR SMALL BUSINESS


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Small Business Data Do's and Don'ts
By
Experian Data Quality, 29 July 2016.

There is a vast, rapidly expanding universe of data out there that is just ripe for the picking. 2.5 quintillion bytes of data or generated each day through a multitude of mediums: social media posts, videos, digital media, business transaction records, cell phone tracking signals, climate sensor feedback, text messages, and so much more. While not all of it can and should be used effectively for small business success, less than .5% of all existing data has been analyzed or leveraged. Data isn't just a big enterprise game; small business can harness it to boost revenue, expand marketing reach, streamline the recruiting process, and help create products or services that customers will truly want. These 10 do's and don'ts can help you embark on a prudent path to data-driven growth.

Small Business Data Do's and Don'ts


Saturday, 27 August 2016

8 SUPER COOL GADGETS TO HELP YOU STAY SUPER COOL


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Gadgets to Help You Stay Cool
By K. Thor Jensen,
PC Magazine, 26 August 2016.

Guess what? It's still summer for another month, and it's going to get worse before it gets better. This year showed us that global warming is here, and it's spectacular. All major cities have transformed into sweat-drenched hellholes, icecaps are melting, and air conditioning just isn't doing the job anymore.

What will save us from this horrible heat? Why, the same thing that doomed us to it: technology! Humans are obsessed with inventing new gadgets to make ourselves more comfortable, and since the introduction of the first modern air conditioner in 1902 we've been using what we know about thermodynamics to beat back the advances of Mother Nature.

In this feature, we'll share a few gadgets that will drop your temperature. Some are high-tech, others are goofy, but when the weather is this hot beggars can't be choosers.

1. Ambi


One of the best feelings on a hot day is pulling an ice cube out of the freezer and pressing it to your forehead to get a few precious minutes of cooling. But then you have to deal with water all over yourself. The Ambi eliminates that annoying second part. It's a metal cooling plate that uses the Peltier effect to quickly reduce its temperature down to 50 degrees Farenheit. The Ambi is primarily pitched for pain and migraine relief, but there's nothing that says you can't use it for general heat-related discomfort as well. It takes just 25 seconds to activate and uses four AA batteries or an included AC adapter.

2. Armpit Fans

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Perspiration is one of the most visible signs of excessive heat, and walking around with big wet stains in your armpits is not a good look. That's what led Japanese company Thanko to develop tiny fans that hide under your shirt to circulate cool air to those problem spots. With three settings, they can run for up to five hours on full USB charge. They look weird, sure, but if they do the job you shouldn't mind looking a little silly. Keep in mind that you'll probably need at least two of them to keep things looking balanced.

3. USB Phone Fan

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Does your commute require you to stand on steamy subway or train platforms each morning? Are you attending an outdoor event in the near future where sweating is certainly on the agenda? This little gadget could help. Just plug it into your phone and feel the breeze. Amazon has a number on offer for just a few bucks.

4. Evapolar


Air conditioning is sort of an "all or nothing" affair - either you cool down a room or you don't. The makers of the Evapolar device are out to change that with a small box they call the first "personal air conditioner." The machine doesn't use any chemical coolants; instead a nanomachine filter slowly absorbs liquid from a tank, which then cools air blown out from a fan. The whole thing is about the size of a small cooler and uses barely any electricity, making it an environmentally conscious way to cool your desk or cubicle.

5. G2T Electric Scarf


When it's hot out, the last thing you want is to put on more clothing. Especially not a bulky neck collar like the G2T from MOAI Electronics. Just a minute, though, buddy, because this weird little gadget might be your best friend once it hits shelves. Heat may feel like a whole-body sensation, but there are actually specific points on your body that have an outsize effect on your perception of temperature. The G2T harnesses the sensitivity of the neck to deliver a powerful heating or cooling effect. It runs off a small battery that fits in a jacket pocket and really seems to work, dropping overall body temperature by several degrees.

6. BedJet


In some parts of the country, the temperature drops when the sun goes down, letting you sleep in cool comfort. Everywhere else, you might want to buy a BedJet. Cooling devices for your bedding have been around for a while, but this space-age setup is the most extreme. A slick-looking fan device pushes cold air through a tube into a special AirComforter sheet, bringing your bed down to your ideal temperature. It can also do hot air, but what monster wants to do that? At US$469, it's not cheap, but considering you spend a third of your life in bed, that's a decent investment.

7. Geizeer


The traditional air conditioner is a serious power hog. They work, sure, but your electric bill suffers for it. The makers of the Geizeer cooler are aiming to upend that paradigm, with a personal AC that costs just a penny a day to operate. It uses a separate ice pack that you keep in your freezer, and when you're ready to use it you open the box and put it in. The internal fan distributes the cold air slowly and steadily in a localized area. It won't replace your clunky old wall unit, but it's great for a desk or small room.

8. Spin Chill


Is there anything better on a sweltering summer day than a cold beverage? We doubt it. But if your bottle isn't as icy as you'd like it to be, the Spin Chill can help. This innovative device uses convection to rapidly transfer heat out of a beverage bottle and into ice in a bucket, spinning it wildly around in a circle as it does it. One would think that would be a recipe for a foamy beverage, but amazingly it doesn't seem to. It takes less than a minute to bring a room-temperature brew to icy cold refreshingness.

Top image: BedJet Climate Comfort System. Credit: BedJet.

[Source: PC Magazine. Edited. Top image added.]

VIDEO: THE SCIENCE BEHIND ANTI-BUBBLES


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As is obvious from its name, anti-bubble is the opposite of bubble. An anti-bubble is a droplet of liquid surrounded by a thin film of gas, while a gas bubble is a sphere of gas surrounded by a liquid. Anti-bubbles are formed when liquid drops or flows turbulently into the same or another liquid. This video explains the amazing physics behind anti-bubbles.


Top gif image created from the video.

[Source: Physics Girl via YouTube]

INFOGRAPHIC: BIZARRE ARCHITECTURE AROUND THE WORLD


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Bizarre Architecture Around the World
By
Fly Abu Dhabi, 23 August 2016.

Architecture is such an integral part of cultures all over the world and the diversity of them means that you can travel to different countries to marvel at the architecture. Landmarks often define cities, and tourists flock to various parts of the world just to be able to see these buildings in real-life.

Our latest infographic looks at not just the wonderful, but the most bizarre pieces of architecture you can find around the globe, from the Kansas City Public Library in Missouri to the Teapot Building in Wuxi. Take a look to find out more about these quirky buildings and where to find them around the world.

Bizarre Architecture Around the World

[Source: Fly Abu Dhabi.]

Friday, 26 August 2016

8 ANIMALS THAT GET THEIR COLOR FROM FOOD


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8 Animals That Get Their Color From Food
By Rosemary Mosco,
Mental Floss, 25 August 2016.

Charlie and the Chocolate Factory gives new meaning to “you are what you eat.” In the classic kids’ book, a girl named Violet Beauregarde chews some experimental blueberry-flavored gum - and it turns her blueberry-blue. But for some animals, that’s not too far from the truth: they get their colors from the food they eat. Here are eight critters that get their hues from their diet, plus two honorable mentions: a bird that’s shinier when it eats bugs, and a garden plant that switches between pink and blue.

1. Blue-footed boobies

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Gif image from PBS/YouTube

Native to warm waters of the eastern Pacific, blue-footed boobies have, well, bright blue feet [top image]. They use this fancy footwear to attract mates via an awkward dance [shown above]. The blue color comes directly from carotenoid pigments in their fishy diet, and healthier birds can afford to expend more pigment to intensify their foot coloration. So, a bird with brighter feet is a more attractive partner.

2. Eastern emerald elysias

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Image credit: Karen N. Pelletreau et al./Wikimedia Commons // CC BY 4.0

Its name is straight out of a fantasy novel, and that’s not even the coolest thing about this marine slug-like animal. The eastern emerald elysia has turned itself, at least in part, into a plant. It’s green, it’s shaped almost exactly like a leaf, and it can do something that animals usually can’t do: make food from the sun.

Plants are green because their cells have special green parts called chloroplasts that make energy from the sun. When the eastern emerald elysia eats some algae, it adds insult to injury by stealing the algae’s chloroplasts. Then it basks in the sunlight and absorbs the food that the chloroplasts make. It’s able to keep these stolen parts functioning for nearly a year - enough time so that it may never need to eat algae again.

3. Salmon

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Image credit: rjunqueira/Pixabay

Salmon flesh has such a lovely hue that we call it, well, salmon pink. These fish get their color from the small shellfish they eat. Farmed salmon are fed natural or synthetic pigments so that their meat retains this familiar tint.

4. Flamingos

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Image credit: Pedros Szekely/Wikimedia Commons // CC BY 2.0

Everyone knows that flamingos are pink and bluebirds are blue, right? Well, not really: Flamingos are definitely pink, but bluebirds’ blue color is an illusion.

Birds have different ways of looking colorful. A bluebird’s feathers have special structures that break up light and reflect just the blue parts. This makes them look blue - but only when light is hitting them in just the right way. If you take a bluebird feather and shine a light behind it, the feather will appear brown. The same is true of most other blue and green birds, from blue jays to green parrots.

Flamingos, on the other hand, have feathers that stay pink no matter which way you look at them. That’s because they’re full of pink-red pigments called carotenoids - carrots are orange because they contain a type of carotenoid. Flamingos get this pink stuff from the shrimp that they eat. If they don’t consume the right food, they’ll turn grayer. Zookeepers have to feed their flamingos food with the right pigments to keep them rosy.

5. Goldfinches

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Image credit: skeeze/Pixabay

Many other birds get their hues from carotenoid pigments. That’s true of American goldfinches, which are blazing yellow in breeding season. Female goldfinches size up males based on the vibrancy of their yellow: Brighter males are healthier and have better diets, so they’re more attractive.

6. Cedar waxwings

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Image credit: skeeze/Pixabay

Cedar waxwings are small, sleek songbirds. Their tails usually have yellow tips - but some have red tails, and it’s all our fault.

Cedar waxwings are native to North America, and they love eating berries. A few decades ago, people brought Asian honeysuckle varieties to North America. These plants spread throughout the forests, and they produce big red berries that are impossible for a hungry waxwing to resist. The berries are rich in a reddish pigment that builds up in waxwing tails, turning them from yellow to orange.

7. Nudibranchs

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Image credit: Tchami/Flickr // CC BY-SA 2.0

Related to snails, nudibranchs live in the ocean, and they’re mind-blowingly colorful. Really: feast your eyes on these hues. They’re so colorful, in fact, that there’s a blog matching different species to David Bowie’s outfits.

Many nudibranchs get their bright colors from their prey. One species, the red sponge dorid, is bright red and probably gets its pigment from the red sponges it eats. This has the added benefit of giving the red sponge dorid some amazing camouflage when it’s crawling on its spongy food.

8. Frilled dragons

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Image credit: Miklos Schiberna/Wikimedia Commons // Public Domain

Remember that scene in Jurassic Park when a neck-frilled dinosaur terrifies the hapless hacker Dennis Nedry, then spits poison on him? The movie’s creators got their inspiration from Australia and New Guinea’s frilled dragons - also known as frill-necked lizards. These remarkable reptiles flare their huge frills when they’re scared, or as part of territorial or courtship displays.

Frilled dragons’ frills come in different colors, from red to orange to yellow. The colors depend on their geographical location - and the variation is probably because of the different amounts of pigment in their prey.

Honorable Mention #1: Hummingbirds

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Image credit: Steve Berardi/Wikimedia Commons // CC BY-SA 2.0

Many hummingbirds have shiny, iridescent patches of feathers. These hues don’t come from their diet; they’re the result of specially structured feathers that reflect light in amazing ways. But even though hummingbirds don’t get their color directly from their food, their diet has a strong influence on how shiny and bright they’ll be.

Anna’s hummingbirds [pictured above] are tiny, fast-moving birds that live along the Pacific Coast of North America. Their foreheads and chins are iridescent red-purple. When they’re staking out territory, they stick up these feathers and enthusiastically show them off. To keep up their high-energy lifestyles, these birds eat sugary flower nectar. But there’s one problem with this sweet diet: Hummingbirds need protein to make their shiny feathers, and there’s not a lot of protein in nectar. Another option is to catch and eat insects, but this takes a LOT of energy. Scientists have found that Anna’s hummingbirds on higher-protein diets have shinier, redder crowns.

Honorable Mention #2: Hydrangeas

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Image credit: ptanpm/Pixabay

Plants can also change color depending on their diets. Hydrangeas are familiar garden flowers, and they’re like living mood rings. If a hydrangea plant is absorbing aluminum from the soil, it turns bubblegum pink. In the absence of aluminum, it’s cotton candy blue. Gardeners adjust the colors by tweaking the soil pH - acidic soil promotes blue colors and basic promotes pinks.

Top image: Blue-footed booby (Sula nebouxii). Credit: Diego Delso/Wikimedia Commons.

[Source: Mental Floss. Edited. Some images added.]

10 HORRIFYING FUTURE WARS WE WILL LIVE TO SEE


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10 Horrifying Future Wars We Will Live To See
By Morris M.,
Listverse, 26 August 2016.

War is one of humanity’s constants. No matter how enlightened we become or how much our technology changes, we’ll still spend our time killing one another. As such, it is inevitable that today’s younger generation will experience war. The only question is when.

These 10 examples of war could well blow up within the next few years. Some are regional, some are global. Some are small, some are big. The only constant is how horrifying these conflicts could potentially be.

10. The China-Russo Siberian War

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Photo credit: The New York Times

One superpower in its twilight years. One new upstart ready to take on the world. At the moment, China and Russia are the big beasts east of the Ural Mountains. Both have vast armies. Both are nuclear-armed. Both are expansionist. And both have a claim on Siberia.

A sparsely populated, resource-rich sweep of land bigger than Canada, Siberia has long been in China’s sights. Recently, the Middle Kingdom caused outrage in Russia by trying to buy up tracts of Siberian land. Beijing considers itself to have a historic claim to at least the eastern part of Siberia, and many ethnic Chinese are settling over the Russian border. For the Kremlin, this spells trouble.

A China-Russo war over Siberia would be devastating and have only two possible outcomes. Either the Chinese army would decimate Russia or Moscow would unleash nuclear war. Either way, the death toll would be catastrophic.

9. The War For The Baltics

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After Putin’s annexation of Crimea, Europe has been jumpy about the possibility of war with Russia. According to the former deputy NATO commander, Sir Alexander Richard Shirreff, it’s a virtual certainty.

Shirreff points to Russia’s fear of encirclement by NATO as the spark that will ignite the region’s tensions. As early as May 2017, the decorated British general expects Moscow to drive a land corridor through Ukraine, connecting the Crimea to Russia, and then invade one or more of the Baltic states. Since Estonia, Latvia, and Lithuania are all NATO members, this could result in an insane Western war with Russia.

The initial battle for the Baltics alone could kill tens of thousands. Chillingly, Shirreff believes Russia would threaten to launch nukes if NATO tried to intervene, threatening millions of lives.

8. The North Korean Spring

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This summer, a high-ranking North Korean diplomat in London defected to South Korea. It was just the latest in a string of incidents that point to the imminent collapse of the Kim Jong Un regime.

Kim has alienated powerful allies such as China. He’s no longer able to keep his elite in luxury. Cheap smartphone technology has allowed his people to see life on the outside for the first time. Meanwhile, the country is preparing for shortages that could make the 1994 famine look like a stroll in the park.

The result could be a revolution unlike anything the DPRK has seen. People could take to the streets, the army could split into warring factions, and all hell could be unleashed. The last time a communist dictatorship imploded violently was in Romania, where a popular revolt killed over 1,100 in less than 10 days. Deposing Kim could be even bloodier.

7. Europe’s Urban Guerrilla War With ISIS

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Faced with air strikes, economic turmoil, and advancing armies, ISIS is on the verge of collapse. Don’t expect them to go quietly, though. When their actual state collapses, chances are the jihadists will take the fight directly to Europe.

Returning fighters could devastate the Continent with a low-intensity yet deadly urban guerrilla war. Europe’s great cities would become charnel houses. You’d see frequent gun and bomb attacks on civilians and pitched battles between police and gun-toting jihadists in the streets.

France and Belgium would be the main targets, followed by Germany and the UK. No city would be safe. Politicians would be paralyzed. There would be bloodshed and mayhem. And this grim urban war would grind on until every last ISIS stooge was dead.

6. Venezuela’s Civil War

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Photo credit: The Daily Beast

The streets of Caracas are lawless. Staple items are impossible to buy. Inflation is over 500 percent and could hit 1,600 percent. There are protests, violence, rampant corruption, police brutality, and a paranoid government that refuses to read the writing on the wall.

The potential end result of this anarchy? Civil war.

With Maduro unwilling to step aside, the hungry, embattled residents of Venezuela could well take up arms. Mass defections from the police and military are possible. Neighboring right-wing governments may stick their oar in, as might left-wing groups like Colombia’s ELN. Such a toxic mix could quickly spiral into utter chaos.

Even foregoing a full-on war, a coup might be Venezuela’s best-case scenario. If Latin American history is anything to go by, such a move would likely lead to repression and bloodshed on a horrifying scale.

5. China’s Second Cultural Revolution

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The Cultural Revolution under Chairman Mao was eye-wateringly brutal. Approximately 1.5 million people died. Millions more were tortured and mutilated. Massive corruption, popular discontent, and a sense of betrayal boiled over into a killing spree. Fast-forward to 2016, and all those ingredients are back in place for a blood-soaked reprise.

China has a long history of peasant rebellions. Mao himself was brought to power in one which killed eight million. A few decades earlier, the Boxer Rebellion led to more than 100,000 deaths. A few decades before that, the Taiping Rebellion killed 20–30 million and possibly as many as 70 million.

In historical context, a new Cultural Revolution isn’t implausible. China is already wracked with 500 protests every day. Every year, around 100,000 riots break out. Leaders are corrupt. The young talk of a new uprising. If the next financial crisis devastates their living standards, we could see another orgy of cataclysmic bloodletting.

4. Bosnia Mark II

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Photo credit: ICTY

In the 1990s, the world watched in horror as Bosnia disintegrated. Around 100,000 died as civilians were ethnically cleansed from their homelands. The 1995 Dayton Accords stopped the bloodshed by creating two “states within a state”: Bosnia and Herzegovina for the Bosniaks and Croats, Republika Srpska for the Serbs.

The trouble is the new state was inherently unstable. Divided along ethnic lines, it created a world of increasing tensions, bitter grievances, and desire for vengeance. Today, everyone is poor. Youth unemployment is over 60 percent, the highest on Earth. The Serbs and Croats still want to split off. The Bosniaks still want to hold their state together.

The leader of Republika Srpska recently chucked a flaming match into this powder keg. Ethnic Serbs will hold a referendum on whether to secede from Bosnia. The result of a probable “yes” vote? An unwanted sequel to Bosnia’s horrifying civil war.

3. The Saudi Arabian Revolution

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Saudi Arabia got off lightly in the Arab Spring. As dictators fell in Tunisia and Egypt, as Syria burned and Libya imploded, Saudi Arabia’s royals managed to cling to power.

Or did they? According to the US-based Washington Institute, conditions in Saudi Arabia are now similar to those preceding the Egyptian revolution. The nation is ready to explode.

The oil price crash has brought the high-spending kingdom to the brink of bankruptcy. Youth unemployment is out of control in a country that’s predominantly young. The anger of educated twentysomethings is overflowing. The House of Saud is pushing through unpopular privatizations, just as Mubarak did. The minority Shia population is rioting. ISIS is attacking. The war in Yemen is going badly.

It’s easy to imagine a revolution springing from this discontent. If it does, it could be another Egypt, another Libya, or another Syria. Only time will tell.

2. The Indo-Pak Nuclear War

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Photo credit: india.com

In winter 2008, the world nearly ended.

That year, a standoff between Pakistan and India over state-sponsored terrorism nearly escalated into nuclear war. In the end, urgent global diplomacy cooled things down. But the two countries have been here before and will reach this point again. If things go differently next time, we could see the end of the world.

An Indo-Pak nuclear war would see Delhi, Mumbai, Karachi, and Islamabad go up in flames. Tens of millions would perish in an inferno. The nuclear winter would destroy crops across Asia, leading to mass famines. An estimated two billion people could die.

So what could trigger such a terrifying conflict? The disputed region of Kashmir, unstable Pakistan becoming a failed state, or Pakistan-linked terror attacks on India. In short, there are too many potential triggers for comfort.

1. The South China Sea/World War III

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Photo credit: CNN

The only thing scarier than Pakistan and India going toe to toe would be China and the US doing the same. Especially if it was in a conflict that pulled in countries like the Philippines, South Korea, Japan, and more.

Welcome to the South China Sea, the region most likely to trigger World War III.

For the past few years, China has been aggressively expanding in the sea. It has done so at the expense of smaller countries that the US just happens to be allied with. The US has responded with warnings. China has returned with threats. Neither side is backing down.

If this does escalate into a war, all bets are off. The whole world would get involved, and millions would die. It’d be like World War II on steroids - the deadliest conflict in human history.

Top image credit: Socio-Economics History Blog.

[Source: Listverse.]