The Best Stuff We've Read This Week

Super interesting articles about God deceiving humans, how little we understand food and lots more neat stuff.

Operation Mincemeat: How A Corpse Fooled the Nazis

In World War II, a secret department of British 'corkscrew thinkers' hatched a plan to use the cadaver of an unclaimed homeless man to turn the tide of the war in the Allies' favor. It worked.

Alistair Clarke, an evolutionary theorist has a new book coming out wherein he's managed to reduce the amount of pleasure we derive from humor into a pretty simple equation. According to the release on Science Daily, humor (h) is equal to the amount of misinformation present in a joke or bit (m), times the "extent to which the individual [the joke receiver] is susceptible to taking it seriously (s)."

If you ever want to fool a Nazi, just dress up a dead body as a British agent, dump him at sea, sit back and thank me in the morning

I learned recently that because of the terrible economy, the incidents of bodies going unclaimed at municipal morgues has doubled in some places. Families down on their luck and faced with a choice of purchasing SPAM and eggs or burying a recently deceased relative are opting for the former over the latter in increasing frequency. The corpses are piling up in ample enough supply that even the beloved body farm at the University of Tennessee (boooo!) began turning down cadaver donations, as its three acres are now packed to the fences with dead bodies.

Will robots eventually destroy humanity? Probably

One of the great things about robots so far is that while, sure, they have superhuman strength, they're generally dumb as a bag of doorknobs. It's very satisfying to push around some robot who's just standing there like a jerk, waiting for you to order him to lift a can or run in place.