Urine survey reveals Europe’s favorite drugs

Coke, meth, ecstasy, amphetamines: each drug has a different 'capital'

  • A large-scale survey of wastewater across Europe shows which illicit drugs are popular.
  • The use of four main drugs was up across the board last year, but regional variation persists.
  • Cocaine is popular in the west and south, meth in the east and north.
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‘An evil I’ve never seen before’: Doctors scramble to understand vaping-related lung disease

Thousands of people are experiencing severe pulmonary issues from vaping, and some are dying.

Image source: Aliaksandr Barouski/Shutterstock
  • Scientists now believe that the primary culprit in this health crisis is vitamin E acetate, though research continues for other toxic factors.
  • Vitamin E is a gooey thickener often used in black-market cannabis-based vaping products.
  • Vapers who feel like they may have pneumonia should consult a physician immediately.
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Confirmed: Some dinosaurs did nest in colonies

An unexpectedly revealing find in Mongolia solves a longstanding riddle.

Image source: Noiel / Shutterstock
  • Normal geological evidence isn't precise enough to confirm paleontologists' suspicions.
  • The new fossils find is covered by a fine veneer of red sand deposited in a single season.
  • Scientists can infer whose eggs they were.
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Solved: the mystery of Brazil's time-traveling capital city

"Brasilia, the biggest paper town ever."

Image source: Nevinho, CC BY-SA 3.0
  • Why does Brasilia, built in the 1950s, pop up on a 1920s map of South America?
  • We put the question out there, and the answers — some more credible than others — came flooding back.
  • Thank you, internet hive mind: you've solved a cartographic mystery!
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Can you solve the mystery of Brazil’s time-traveling capital?

Forensic cartography 101: Explain what Brasilia is doing on this map of 1920s South America.

Image: Rob Cornelissen
  • "Forensic cartography" is dating a map by the age of its borders.
  • All evidence points to this undated map of South America to be from the 1920s.
  • So why does it feature Brasilia, the new capital of Brazil, which was only built in the 1950s?
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