On September 28, 2017, LEGO fans of all ages finally got the chance to visit the massive 82,000 square-feet, 100-feet high, LEGO house aka “Home of The Brick.” Located in the iconic toy’s hometown of Billund, Denmark, the impressive structure, that has been in the works since 2014, is the brainchild of Danish architect Bjarke Ingels. Its exterior, resembling 21 gigantic LEGOblocks, is covered in colorful tiles giving the illusion that the entire building is made of the popular bricks. A 2X4 keystone brick placed on top welcomes visitors flying into Billund Airport with light beams from its eight knobs.
Part public art piece, part amusement park, the LEGO house has something for everyone — from the youngest enthusiasts to AFOLs (Adult Fans of LEGO). Upon entering, visitors encounter four color coded areas, each signifying a different aspect of play and learning. The Red Zone allows kids to put their creative skills to work using the millions of colorful bricks scattered under a cascading LEGO “waterfall.” The Green Zone, which tests social skills with storytelling and roleplay, includes activities like writing and directing a LEGO movie. The Blue Zone is dedicated to cognitive play, with fun tasks like guiding robots on Arctic missions to rescue trapped mammoths. The Yellow Zone allows visitors to express their emotions by using the bricks to build fish and releasing them into a large “aquarium” or planting their LEGO flower creations in the extensive LEGO meadow.
On October 20, British adventurer Tom Morgan soared over South Africa seated in a camp chair strapped to 100 helium balloons. During the two-hour flight, the balloonist covered 16 miles and reached heights of up to 8,000 feet. Though the daredevil later called the experience “unbelievably cool,” he did admit feeling “somewhere between terrified and elated” during the flight.
Morgan, the founder of the League of Adventurists, a British group whose mission is to make the world “less boring,” says the flight was initially supposed to take off from Botswana. However, after intense gusts of winds shredded the balloons three times, the team decided to attempt it from the outskirts of Johannesburg. Given that they only had enough helium left for one more try, Morgan was happy he was finally able to complete the flight without any mishaps.
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Biologists have long believed the common ancestor of all primates was a small, deliberate animal which used its grasping hands and feet to scamper along thin branches foraging for fruits and insects. They theorized that the leaping skills came later, after the proto-primate evolved into two distinct groups — wet-nosed primates like lemurs and dry-nosed primates that include monkeys, apes, and humans. However, the discovery of a perfectly preserved 52-million-year-old fossil seems to suggest that the first primate might have been leading an impressively acrobatic lifestyle, leaping from one tree to another.
Paleontologists discovered the quarter-inch-long ankle bone on an expedition near Marseilles, in south-eastern France, more than 30 years ago. However, it is only recently that a team led by Duke University assistant professor Doug Boyer, decided to study it in detail.
As it turns out, the fossil belonged to one of the oldest known wet-nosed primates — a chipmunk-sized creature called Donrussellia provincialis. Since the mammal has previously only been identified by its jaws and teeth, the team decided to conduct an extensive analysis, by comparing 3-D scans of the tiny bone with those of other animal species.