Ask Science

Do we have any estimates as to how long it takes for a species of bacteria to go technically extinct entirely via genetic drift?

So, let’s say there’s a species of bacteria that is known to dwell in Greek yogurt. How long would it take before that species of yogurt-dweller only has modern descendants different enough to qualify as one or more new species?

Is it possible to receive an electric shock when you *stop* touching something?

I seem to remember as a young child being told that it is safe to touch a Van de Graff generator (for the hair demonstration), but that if you let go before it is safe you will get a nasty shock. I know a bit more about electricity now, and I'm a little skeptical now. Is it possible to get a shock from letting go of something?

Could death by starvation be delayed by drinking your own blood?

Let's say you are dying of starvation. You pull one of your teeth out, causing blood to slowly seep into your mouth, which you swallow. The calories from the blood getting digested will delay the time you die of starvation, right? Or will losing blood while starving kill you faster?

Atapuerca – human cannibalism 1 million years ago: what is known about the evolution of human morality over time into the near current era?

I just watched the recent video from Stephen Milo on human life 1 million years ago. He mentions cannibalism evidence across multiple events. That has me thinking about morality in isolated groups and how it might have evolved or could evolve differently....

This is probably a dumb question, but if we eliminate the hydrophobia caused by rabies, would it increase the survival rate of active rabies?

I’ve been learning some about rabies and learned about rabies causing hydrophobia. This is just a theory, I’m not saying I know anything about this topic to be knowledgeable, but if we could get someone with rabies to not fear water, could they survive?

How do some animals (or at least humans) manage to generate more force than their own muscles are rated to handle?

Just as an example, there were evidently reports during the 2007 Glasgow airport attack that someone attempting to subdue the assailant and assist police kicked said attacker in the testicles… but somehow managed to do so hard enough to injure one of their own foot tendons.

Does stranger matter violate thermodynamics?

I’m just curious.Strange matter, according to my research, is a perfect state of matter with perfect density, etc. If it is like this, does that also mean that it violates the law of entropy?Because let’s see, if it converts matter around it into stranger matter, and after that it doesn’t react with anything else, I mean...

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