On the outside, it looks like nothing special, but nearly all of the 200 residents of Whittier, Alaska all live inside the 14-story Begich Towers condominium on the edge of town. This building also houses a police station, a health clinic, a convenience store, a laundromat, and even a church in its basement. The town can only be reached by sea, or a long, one-lane tunnel through the mountains, which is closed completely at night. Continue reading for another video and more information.
Water is usually dark and ominous at night, but a bloom of Noctiluca scintillans, a large, green marine dinoflagellate that exhibits bioluminescence when disturbed, made its way to Hong Kong. According to University of Georgia oceanographer Samantha Joye, this phenomenon, also known as "Sea Sparkle", is triggered by farm pollution that can be devastating to marine life and local fisheries. Eugene Turner at Louisiana State University says that Noctiluca itself does not produce neurotoxins like other similar organisms do, but its role as both prey and predator can eventually magnify the accumulation of toxins in the food chain. Click here to view the first image in today's viral picture gallery. Continue reading to watch the top five viral videos for today.
After Lee Wachtstetter's, 86, husband died of cancer in 1997, she decided to honor his wishes and live on the sea...permanently. She sold her 5-bedroom Fort Lauderdale home and moved to a stateroom aboard the Crystal Serenity luxury cruise ship. Watchstetter often cruised with her husband during their 50-year-marriage, and actually lived on a Holland America Line ship until it discontinued its dance host program. For the past 7-years she's been living on the 1070-passenger Crystal Serenity. Watchstetter says: "The day before my husband died of cancer in 1997, he told me, 'Don't stop cruising.' So here I am today living a stress-free, fairy-tale life. I enjoy dancing, and this was the best of the remaining ships that still use dance hosts. My husband didn't dance, just didn't like to, and encouraged me to dance with the hosts. I dance every night for a couple hours after dinner." Continue reading for a video tour of one of the staterooms aboard Crystal Serenity and more information.
Photography can be used to capture all kinds of moments, including weddings, and that's why The International Society Of Professional Wedding Photographers holds an annual competition showcasing the best of the best. Here's what makes wedding photography challenging, according to ISPWP's website: "You have to get it right the first time, every time. You have to be a master of the craft and know your gear so well that you can make adjustments on the fly, without thinking or hesitating. And you have to do it for 8, 10, or 12 hours in close quarters with clients who have put their trust in you to get it right." Above, we have Nathan Welton's beautiful shot which took home 1st place in the Pure Art category, captured in Denver, Colorado during spring 2014. Continue reading for more.
Living in a fairytale sounds farfetched, that is unless...you're staying at this real-life hidden treehouse in Atlanta, Georgia. It consists of 3 connected treehouses set in secluded in-town Buckhead and is furnished with antiques as well as natural artifacts. Quietly nestled amongst the trees, it's a perfect weekend trip while staying in the city. You can either book the treehouse for a week at $2000, or a single night for $375. Continue reading for more pictures and the listing page link.
With Apple having official stores in China now, we don't come across as many crazy iPhone smuggling stories, but then this guy popped up in the news. Simply put, he decided to strap 94 iPhones (various models) to his body in an attempt to smuggle them from Hong Kong to Guangdong province, China. The China Daily reports that they are valued at a combined 300,000 yuan ($48,300+ USD), and attached "to his chest, belly, thighs and shanks" with run-of-the-mill masking tape. Continue reading for more pictures and information.
The Biblioteca Vasconcelos (above), also known as the Jose Vasconcelos Library, is touted as a Megabiblioteca ("megalibrary"), located in the north area of Mexico City. It's dedicated to Jose Vasconcelos, the former president of the National Library of Mexico. The library spans 38,000 square metres (409,000 sq ft) and had an initial planned cost of 954 million pesos (roughly US$98 million). The winning proposal for the library was designed by the Mexican architect, Alberto Kalach. Continue reading for more extraordinary libraries from around the world.
In the wake of the terrible tragedy at the offices of the French satirical newspaper Charlie Hebdo, artists worldwide have come together to pay tribute to the 12 people who were lost in that event by drawing cartoons that express their thoughts and emotions better than any words ever could. First up, we have Lucille Clerc's image, which shows three views of a single pencil, one intact, one snapped in half and one with the back half-sharpened, so it comprises two pencils. Continue reading to see more cartoons that were shared on Twitter by artists.
Tom Evans, a climber and photographer, has been chronicling the very difficult feat Kevin Jorgeson and Tommy Caldwell are attempting: free-climbing El Capitan at Yosemite National Park. Free climbs refer to those in which climbing protection such as ropes, tri-cams, nuts, and other aid-climbing equipment, may be used to protect against injury during falls, but cannot be used in ascending the climb. This monolith of granite has been climbed in the past, but these two are ascending the Dawn Wall route, a sheer face of rock considered by many to be the most difficult free climb in the world. Tommy's FB page. Continue reading for a video, more pictures and additional information.
For the record, the longest unambiguously documented human lifespan is that of Jeanne Calment of France (above) - lived from 1875-1997 - who died at age 122 years, 164 days. Believe it or not, she even met Vincent van Gogh when she was 12 or 13. This led to news media attention in 1985, after Calment turned 110. The longest undisputed lifespan for a male is that of Jiroemon Kimura of Japan (1897-2013), who died in June 2013 at age 116 years, 54 days. He was also the world's oldest living person from December 2012 until his death. Continue reading to see five of the last known living humans as of today.