Ever consider donating your body to science? Your sad little meat suit could advance the cause of human knowledge! Sure, maybe you were a "callow reprobate" in life (the judge's words, not ours), but in death you serve a higher function. Well, unless science decides to use your carcass for one of these things ...
WARNING: The following images will disturb you. (Unless you're a hardcore Slayer fan.)
5 Scientists Tested The Punching Proficiency Of Severed Arms
Our fancy fingers and opposable thumbs are one of the advantages that separate us humans from the lower beasts. Well, that and flamethrowers. Once the wolves develop flamethrower technology, it's all over. But there's at least one man -- David Carrier, a biology professor at the University of Utah -- who doesn't completely buy into the whole "civilized dexterity" thing. He poses another theory: Our hands evolved as they did so that we could more effectively punch each other in the face.
So he gathered up some dismembered arms and started figuring out how to make them deliver haymakers. You know, as one does.
David Carrier/University of Utah
Dead men tell no tales, but they sometimes knock your ass out cold.
Researchers attached the arms to a pendulum and tied fishing line to the tendons of the forearm muscles, allowing them to be controlled by guitar tuners like marionettes straight out of a Hellraiser puppet show.
Which line do we pull to flip our sanity the bird?
Carrier and Co. then forced the severed arms to slug a force-measuring dumbbell using three hand positions: a clenched fist, a loose fist, and an open-palm slap. Results confirmed that the clenched fist -- a configuration unique to our human dickbeaters -- is not only capable of dealing out more forceful blows but also causes less damage to the bones of the punching hand. And then every boxer who's ever lived breathed out a collective, "No shit. You needed to collect and automate corpse arms to figure that out?"
4 The Military Shot Corpses To Test The Stopping Power Of Handguns
Imagine you're an Army captain tasked with determining the best service pistol to issue to your men. How would you go about making that decision? If your immediate and enthusiastic answer was "prop up corpses and go to town on history's weirdest shooting gallery," then you are fucked in the head. And your name is Luis LaGarde.
"Well, you guys threw a shit-fit when I wanted to use homeless people!"
In 1899, LaGarde and Colonel John T. Thompson (who would later go on to invent the Thompson submachine gun made famous by Al Capone and the like), hung an unspecified number of cadavers from the ceiling and took turns shooting them with .38 and .45 caliber revolvers. Dozens of rounds were fired into each corpse and, based entirely on how much each shot made the body swing, LaGarde and Thompson "calculated" the relative stopping power of the various gun models. Their findings influenced military policies, specifically those dictating that service pistols should be of no less than .45 caliber. Such experiments were finally abandoned completely in the 1920s, when they were condemned for being "scientifically unsound." That's science speak for "a sane person finally stumbled into the House of the Dead and screamed, 'What in the actual fuck are you doing?!'"