Science Versus Myth

Are vampires real? What is an out-of-body experience? Are crop circles proof that aliens exist? HowStuffWorks explores what is real and what is urban legend with this collection of Science Versus Myth articles.

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It turns out you can't just scatter your loved one's ashes anywhere. So what can you do with them?

By Jesslyn Shields

Dragon fire is an awe-inspiring thing, but exactly how would it happen? Real-world clues from nature point the way.

By Laurie L. Dove

A mysterious warrior with a silver arm? A giant subterranean king who could kill with a single glance? A dog-headed, overprotective mother? Yes! And more...

By Robert Lamb

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Does your back flare up when a storm is coming? Many people swear that rain makes their joints hurt more. But science has had a hard time proving this.

By Alia Hoyt & Kathryn Whitbourne

Some physics students did the calculations, and the results are not pretty.

By Alia Hoyt

So many people are getting cremated these days that we're starting to get pretty creative about what we do with all those ashes.

By Kate Kershner

It's that creepy time of year again, and Dr. Anton Jessup is back for another series of Monster Science. In this episode, he meets up with some unexpected vampire vixens.

By Robert Lamb

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Thousands of years ago, the Babylonians created the zodiac and dropped a constellation when it didn't quite fit into their schematic. Its name? Ophiuchus. Should it be part of our horoscope?

By Kate Kershner & Kathryn Whitbourne

If mental strain caused a bloody nose, academic testing sites would be awash in crimson. So why do we still see psychic nosebleeds from "Stranger Things" to "Scanners"?

By Laurie L. Dove

Top atmospheric scientists say there's no evidence those lines in the sky are part of some sinister government plot. But will that dissuade conspiracy theorists?

By Patrick J. Kiger

Not sure what chemtrails are or where you stand on them? A newly published, peer-reviewed examination of the chemtrail hypothesis could be for you. We have the scoop.

By Jonathan Strickland

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A bunch of Yale physicists decided to give Schrodinger's cat not one but two boxes. And that, strangely enough, could eventually prove handy for quantum computing.

By Julia Layton

The Chinese monk was preserved in a ceramic vessel for almost four years, and turned into a statue to inspire others to devote themselves to the practice.

By Christopher Hassiotis

Humans have only been bipedal for a sliver of history. What if we returned our spines to their original position and quit walking upright? What would that world be like?

By Julie Douglas

Is 'Jim Wilson' really a code name airlines use to refer to a corpse being transported on a plane? Or just an urban myth?

By Kristen Hall-Geisler

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Fast, right? You'll have no trouble accommodating your vampire overlord.

By Robert Lamb

Astrophysicist Neil deGrasse Tyson and rapper B.o.B join centuries of folks who have argued over the shape of the planet. The diss tracks are a new twist though.

By Christian Sager

You've heard the term 'bloodcurdling scream,' and blood can thicken in response to actual physical threats. Is the same possible when the fear is entirely fictional?

By Chris Opfer

One pursuer of the towering, hairy cryptid actually has figured out how to make a decent full-time job out of it. Here's how.

By Patrick J. Kiger

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They weren't always the sparkling, smiling G-rated creatures that they are today.

By Julia Layton

This is for those of you who want to think "outside the box," even when you're dead.

By Robert Lamb

Straitjacket sales may be low, but people still make them, and they definitely still use them.

By Adrian Rogers

A new vitamin that'll prevent cancer? Chocolate as a weight-loss tool? Hang on a second. Before you buy into some extraordinary claims, use some common sense to figure out whether that "study" is the real deal.

By Oisin Curran

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Of all the cosmetic problems to worry about waking up to — dark under-eye circles, a blemish on your nose, new stubble on your chin — a headful of white hair ranks pretty low on your list. Should you be more concerned?

By Laurie L. Dove

Chicago has long been known as "The Windy City." It's a pretty cool nickname, but does it live up to it?

By Kate Kershner