Fan Builds Massive Metroid Prime Boss Fight Model Out of LEGO

Spanning five feet in length and featuring Samus and Meta Ridley, this model captures one of Metroid Prime’s seminal moments in great detail.

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Spiders Sail Across Water to Colonize the World

Spiders Sail Across Water to Colonize the World

Hate spiders all you want, there’s no river wide enough to keep them away. Turns out, nature’s crafty little web builders are also master sailors, using their legs to catch the wind and their silk to anchor their bodies on water.

That’s according to a new study published in BMC Evolutionary Biology, which helps explain how spiders migrate across vast distances and quickly colonize new areas. While scientists hadn’t realized that spiders can sail, it’s well known that many species disperse by ‘ballooning’—using their silk to catch the wind and lift themselves into the air. Under good wind conditions, a ballooning spider can travel up to 30 kilometers a day but it’s a fairly high-risk mode of locomotion. Imagine if every time you wanted to travel somewhere, you were forced to catch a gust of wind.

“Even Darwin took note of flying spiders that kept dropping on the Beagle miles away from the sea shore,” lead study author Morito Hayashi of London’s Natural History Museum said in a statement. “But given that spiders are terrestrial, and that they do not have control over where they will travel when ballooning, how could evolution allow such risky behavior to be maintained?”

The researchers suspected ballooning wasn’t the entire story. To learn what happens when a spider lands on water, they collected 325 spiders from 21 species living on small islands in nature reserves around the UK. In the lab, the spiders were placed on trays of water, and the researchers used air pumps to mimic gusts of wind.

All of the spiders were able to stand on water thanks to their highly water-repellent legs. And out of 325, 201 exhibited some form of “sailing,” many sticking their legs out in elaborate postures to catch the wind.

“We’ve now found that spiders actively adopt postures that allow them to use the wind direction to control their journey on water,” Hayashi said. “They even drop silk and stop on the water surface when they want. This ability compensates for the risks of landing on water after the uncontrolled spider flights.”

Spider silk appears to act as a dragline, allowing water-stranded spiders to grab onto floating objects and make their way safely to shore. Spiders that balloon, the researchers learned, are also the best sailors, suggesting that the two behaviors evolved in tandem.

With air and water posing little obstacle, it’s not hard to image how these critters could quickly colonize the world. And like it or not, that’s exactly what spiders have done.

Spiders Sail Across Water to Colonize the World

Read the full scientific paper here.

Contact the author at maddie.stone@gizmodo.com or follow her on Twitter.


Images via Alex Hyde

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Measuring Your Financial Health Beyond The Credit Score

financialhealth The credit score has become a ubiquitous way to assess someone’s credit-worthiness. It is used in a host of underwriting decisions and background checks, from mortgages to auto to business loans, apartment rentals and even employment candidacy. But credit scores are not a prevalent factor in peoples’ daily financial habits. Why? Read More

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The secret to being creative

creativity
Creativity is not just for artists, musicians, writers, and designers. We are all creative, but the folks who are known for it have spent time cultivating it, failing at it, and working at it. It’s easy to look at any famous creative person and think they’re naturally creative. It’s easy to assume their work just appeared and didn’t take hours/months/years of painstaking dedication. Much like the idea of ‘overnight success’, creativity is viewed as something that just happens. Well, I’m here to tell you that’s not the case. I’m here to share some examples of how anyone can cultivate and…

This story continues at The Next Web

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How I grew a startup the hard way

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When I founded Datto in 2007, I didn’t really know what I was getting into. I had a simple product idea, and I wanted to take a chance, even knowing that most startups fail. I wanted to deliver insurance against downtime to small businesses that couldn’t afford traditional enterprise backup products. Whether it’s your local dentist’s office or a mid-size business, they need to stay up and running just as much as large enterprises. When I started building my team, I knew the attitudes of my first few hires were going to be as important as their resumes – maybe…

This story continues at The Next Web

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6 signs that you should ‘nope’ right out of that job interview

nope1
There are a lot of articles covering things you should or should not do during a job interview. You should dress nice, answer questions confidently and have the right body language. You should not fidget with your pen, ask about vacation or compensation policy or even sit without being offered a chair. Some are obviously more valid than others, you can’t expect to make a good impression if you show up unshowered, put your feet on the interviewer’s desk while lighting up a cigarette. But what about your interviewer? What are the signs that indicate that perhaps this isn’t a very…

This story continues at The Next Web

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How Andela is helping Africa beat the world’s developer shortage

Andela
It’s well established that Africa has a severe shortage of software developers; it has for a long time. Back in 2011, the Kenya ICT Board’s Julisha report quoted 45 percent of respondent firms saying good software developers were difficult to find. The EY 2013/14 Sub-Saharan Africa Talent Trends and Practices study confirmed this ongoing issue. The study found 31 percent of firms in the region are employing the same number of expats, while 16 percent plan to hire more. The Technical University of Kenya says the skills shortage amongst ICT graduates is due to low levels of awareness of careers in…

This story continues at The Next Web

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Reigate Grammar School Computing Department

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