News From Around The Blogosphere 12.9.09

1. Coalition for Libel Reform to deliver petition to British Parliament tomorrow – I’ve blogged about the British libel laws before in relation to the libel case the British Chiropractic Association brought against journalism Simon Singh for honestly reporting that their services are bogus. Well now a coalition is delivering a petition signed by writers, performers, scientists, and other British citizens concerned about this afront to free speech. Among those supporting Simon Singh, Richard Wiseman, Dara O’ Briain, Jonathan Ross, Stephen Fry, Ben Goldacre, Marcus Chown, Dave Gorman, and Robin Ince.

2. The 15 Weirdest Science Stories of 2009 – 2009 was a great year for science. It was the year that brought us science news stories about giant sperm, a hideous 4-foot-long sea worm, pigeon prison smugglers, a teddy bear made from placenta, a mermaid, the Swedish internet being brought down by a typo, Brazilians being advised to pee in the shower, a counterfeit moon rock, bulletproof turbans, a man almost murdered by a robot, the “answers” to the Rorschach test being leaked on Wikipedia, search engines forcing a French town to change its name, a world-famous sex blogger and call girl revealing her scientist secret identity, the Skull and Bones society being sued by Geronimo’s descendents for stealing their ancestor’s skull and bones, and of course, the baguette that brought down the most sophisticated machine ever built.

3. UFO sighted in Norway? – Nope. Just a cool-looking Russian rocket.

And here’s a video that simulates particles being spewed out from a spinning rocket booster:

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