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Scientists Discover an Unexpected Hangover Cure that Actually Works

By Tim Muprhy 1 years ago No comments

The Unique, The Interesting and The Productive - The Murphy Letter - August 2015 Edition

***Scientists Discover an Unexpected Natural Hangover Cure that Actually Works***

There is no shortage of alleged hangover cures, but now science is actually backing one up.

Australia’s national science agency, the Commonwealth Scientific and Industrial Research Organization (CSIRO), announced last month on its blog that in its research with Horticulture Innovation Australia, it made an unlikely discovery. Pears, in addition to lowering cholesterol, relieving constipation, and reducing inflammation, can also lower alcohol levels, preventing hangovers before they even start.

If consumed in advance of the alcohol, pears, and specifically Korean pear juice, the researchers say, “significantly reduced” hangover symptoms compared to a placebo drink. The biggest impact was seen in the subjects’ ability to concentrate, says Professor Manny Noakes, the project’s lead researcher.

It works, Noakes explained, because the pears affect the enzymes involved in alcohol metabolism, helping the body metabolize and eliminate alcohol or even inhibit its absorption. “In particular, reductions were seen in blood acetaldehyde levels, the toxic metabolic thought to be responsible for hangover symptoms,” says Noakes.

However, CSIRO says, these were just preliminary studies and a comprehensive review of the scientific literature on the topic is still forthcoming. But in the meantime, no harm in trying this one out.

-Written by Deena Shanker and Originally Published in Quartz 8/7/15 (


***Brick Laying Robot Lays 1,000 Bricks an Hour & Builds 150 Homes a Year***

An Australian company, Fastbrick Robotics, has invented anew brick laying machine it calls Hadrian after the ancient Roman Emperor who reigned from 117 AD to 138 AD and was renowned for the amount of construction he oversaw.

Hadrian is designed to work around the clock, seven days a week, building brick walls and “framing” an average size Australian house in just two days. The same task takes human workers 4 to 6 weeks to complete. One Hadrian machine will be capable of producing 150 houses per year.

Fastbrick Robotics is currently working on its first prototype and expects to bring a commercial version to market within 2 to 3 years.

Take a look at Hadrian in action here.

-Originally written by David Russell Schilling and Published in


***Next Step for Drones: Defending Against Them***

As Amazon Inc. and Google Inc. consider drones for tasks ranging from package delivery to providing high-speed Internet, regulators and military planners worry that low-cost drones, which are widely available for purchase, could pose a threat to commercial aviation, vital infrastructure and even troops.

The devices tend to be smaller and lighter than their military counterparts. That also makes them harder to detect. Though they have many legitimate applications, in fields such as photography and filmmaking, their rapid spread and potential for misuse has given rise to a new business: developing anti-drone defenses.

A series of incidents in the U.S. and Europe illustrate why. Fire-fighting efforts in San Bernadino this month were hampered by drones hovering over the flames.Helicopters used to battle the fire had to temporarily halt operations for fear of colliding with the drones, a city official said.

This past January in Washington, a hobbyist accidentally crashed a drone on the White House grounds, triggering a security lockdown.And, in April, after several drones were spotted above French nuclear power stations, France awarded contracts to small military-research teams to develop weapons its police and air force could use to bring down the bird-size flying robots.

In the U.S., some companies are developing counterdrone systems that use microphones or radar to detect drones.U.S. authorities have used the systems to protect prisons, sporting events and government buildings, according to Drone Shield LLC, a U.S. maker of drone-detection systems. At the Boston Marathon in April net guns were on hand to capture any unwelcome drones, Drone Shield said.

A low-cost method of intercepting drones is crucial because the aircraft themselves are relatively cheap—less than $1,000 for even sophisticated commercial models.

-Originally Published in the Wall St. Journal, full article can be found here.


***Uber for Doctor House Calls?***

An Uber-type service to allow doctors to make house calls? There’s an app for that. Chief Technology Officer Oscar Salazar discusses the site’s service to doctors and patients and its newest round of funding. Click here for the video!


***Did You Know?***

Beard Tokens: Russian Emperor Peter I in 1698 implemented a unique law: A beard tax designed to help Russia appear more European. "Shave or pay" was the motto. Those who opted out were forced to purchase a “beard token,” carried like a weapons permit.


Window Tax: The window tax was a property tax based on the number of windows in a house. It was a significant social, cultural, and architectural force in England, France and Scotland during the 18th and 19th centuries.

To avoid the tax some houses from the period can be seen to have bricked-up window-spaces. In England and Wales it was introduced in 1696 and was repealed in 1851, 156 years after first being introduced. France and Scotland both had window taxes for similar reasons.


Why People Didn't Smile in Old Photos: During the early days of photography, people were encouraged not to smile. Photographs were a continuation of painted portraits which were considered formal and thus smiling was discouraged. Exposures also took longer, up to several seconds, and it was harder to maintain a smile without moving and creating a blurry image.

Another reason for not smiling had to do with tooth care. Modern dental science was still getting off the ground. Before the advent of mass produced toothpaste in the 1880's, dentists concocted their own formulas and sold them in bottles - still most people did not have very good teeth and personal dental hygene was not encouraged to the degree it is today.

Lastly, folks didn’t smile was because they thought it made them look stupid. Most individuals simply didn’t want to be immortalized for all of history with a goofy grin on their faces. Mark Twain summed it up best when he said, “A photograph is a most important document, and there is nothing more damning to go down to posterity than a silly, foolish smile caught and fixed forever.”

-Howston Public Library – Austin, TX


***The New American Slum - Poverty Rate Nearly Doubles***

Half a century after President Lyndon B. Johnson declared a war on poverty, the number of Americans living in slums is rising at an extraordinary pace.

The number of people living in high-poverty areas nearly doubled between 2000 and 2013, to 13.8 million from 7.2 million. That’s the highest number of Americans living in high-poverty neighborhoods ever recorded.

Originally published in The Atlantic, full article can be found here.



"The four most dangerous words in investing are: 'this time it's different.'"

--John Templeton


***The One Thing***

The ONE Thing has made more than 200 appearances on national bestseller lists, including #1 Wall Street Journal, NewYork Times, and USA Today. It won 12 book awards, has been translated into 24 languages, chosen as one of the Top 5 Business Books of 2013 by Hudson’s Booksellers.

Did you know that the website also has downloadable templates and resources? Click here for resources that will help you plan your goals and keep steady focus on your ONE Thing.


***Eyeglasses with Face Un-Recognition Function to Debut in Japan***

The National Institute of Informatics said it has developed eyeglasses that help users protect their privacy by disabling facial-recognition systems in cameras.

The Privacy Visor, created by the government-affiliated institute and an eyeglass maker in Japan’s Fukui prefecture, uses unique angles and patterns on its lens that reflect or absorb light. This prevents the recognition systems in digital cameras and smartphones from spotting a human face in a shot and focusing on it.

“The Privacy Visor is the world’s first product with this technology,” the institute’s Professor Isao Echizen told Japan Real Time. Mr. Echizen, who led the research, saidhis goal was to protect the privacy of individuals in a world where cameras and smartphones can automatically focus on people’s faces without them knowing, and where such images are shared widely on social networks. “We are often told not to unveil our personal information to others, but our faces are also a type of an ID. There should be a way to protect that,” he said.

Tests with cameras on smartphones showed that the eyeglasses were able to trick the facial-recognition system 90% of the time.

The Privacy Visor is scheduled to go on sale by June 2016 and is expected to cost about ¥30,000 ($240).

- Originally Published in the Wall St. Journal, full article can be found here.


***The Scoop on America’s Best Mail-Order Ice Creams***

There’s an artisan ice cream boom under way, and a few of the makers ship nationwide. Here is a list of some summer favorites:

  • McConnell’s Fine Ice Creams: Since 1949, this Santa Barbara stalwart has made everything from scratch with grass-fed dairy. Pictured: Sweet Cream—dense, velvety, absolutely classic. $40 plus shipping for four pints,
  • Capogiro: Philadelphians line up around the block for this gelateria’s scrumptious scoops. Pictured: Pistacchio Siciliano made with intensely flavorful Italian nuts. $60 plus shipping for six pints,
  • Choctal:
    Chocolate and vanilla only—but four varieties of each!—made from single-origin beans. $33 plus shipping for three pints,
  • Salt & Straw: Small-batch cult fave from Portland, Ore. Pictured: Goats Milk and Lingonberries, a luscious collaboration with Nordic street cart Viking Soul Food. $65 plus shipping for five pints,
  • Tipsy Scoop: Cocktail and dessert in one, these ice creams and sorbets are spiked. Pictured: Orange Lime Mezcal Sorbet, a novel take on the frozen margarita. $60 plus shipping for four pints,

- Originally published in the Wall St. Journal

Click here for the full list of delicious options...


***Scientists are Developing an X-ray Pill You Can Swallow***

According to the American Cancer Society, everyone over the age of 50 should get a colonoscopy to be screened for colorectal cancer. But many shy away from the procedure that involves sticking a camera up somewhere things don’t often go. However, a new product being developed might make checking for colon cancer as easy as swallowing a pill.

Check Cap, led by medical engineer Yoav Kimchy, has developed a pill that contains a small sensor that works like an X-ray machine. A patient swallows the pill and when it gets to the colon, it emits a signal to determine how far it is from the colon wall. The signal is emitted in every direction, allowing the pill to map the entire inside of the colon.It sends the data to a wireless patch the patient slaps on their skin, which tracks the pill’s movement through their body.

The pill is disposable and doesn’t need to be retrieved once it’s done its job.

Originally Published in Quartz, full article can be foundhere.


***Picasso on the dangers of Success***

“Success is dangerous. One begins to copy one-self, and to copy oneself is more dangerous than to copy others. It leads to sterility.”

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