New and Notable: 11/6-11/12

/ by Edit Staff /

Anime in space, lunar land deeds and more.

Dice-K Makes Dicey Fashion Choice

Japanese entrepreneur Daisuke “Dice-K” Enomoto made papers around the world. He will be the next space tourist to spend a week at the International Space Station and boy, will he do it in style. With Russian approval, Enomoto intends to dress up as his favorite cartoon chracter for the trip.
Enomoto, a self-proclaimed fan of the series Gundam, will don the trademark outfit of pilot Char Aznable. Dice-K will use at least some of his time on the ISS to build a plastic model of a Gundam character. The trip will set Enomoto back a cool $20 million but clearly Dice-K knows you can’t put a price on the chance to be an anime dork in space.

Bad Deeds

The best things in life are free. The Beijing Lunar Village Aeronautics Science and Technology Co. probably should have considered that adage before they tried to sell the moon. Xinhua reported that the company was closed for attempting to sell lunar land at the price of 298 yuan ($37) per acre.
Each of the 34 clients—or, more appropriately, “lunatics”—that bought such deeds, were told they were entitled to land up to three kilometers below the surface of their plots. The company would have done well to remember the three Ls of real estate: Location, location and, loopholes or not, lunar land can’t be sold under international space law. You frauds.

FameLab 2006!

Tuesday marked the official London launch of FameLab 2006. The American Idol of British science, FameLab seeks out charismatic scientists, who give brief talks to a general adult audience, becoming “the new faces of UK science.” The winner, to be determined at a final next June, will receive £2,000 and a chance develop a television program. The 2005 winner, Dr. Mark Lewney, jammed on his electric guitar during his talk on the physics of music, which judge Simon Singh called “gob-smackingly amazing.”

Who’s Your Daddy?

A 15-year-old British boy tracked down his anonymous, sperm-donor father, the BBC reported this week. The boy sent a swab of his DNA to, and found two men who share a last name and have similar Y chromosomes. The sperm bank would only tell the boy’s mother the donor’s birthday, place of birth and college degree. But with this information, the last name and a little help from, the boy found the one man who matched all the criteria. The boy has made contact with his father. Yesterday’s anonymity is today’s profitable website.

Originally published November 12, 2005

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