Flock of cock and hens (Gallus gallus domesticus) chickens in field at poultry farm. (Arterra/UIG via Getty Images)

There are 19 billion chickens on the planet, and they exist at our pleasure. Yet we don’t really understand them. Perhaps the wisdom of the chicken isn’t something the world needs to hear, but on the other hand, as factory farming techniques proliferate around the world, and the risk of diseases intensifies, any information chickens can communicate is valuable.

Engineers and poultry scientists at The University of Georgia and Georgia Institute of Technology are collaborating with farmers to interpret the chicken language to monitor flock and farm conditions. They’ve developed software that can listen in chicken facilities and alert farmers to problems with temperature, air quality, illness, or other stressors.

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Residents of the Irish town of Ringaskiddy report that fumes from a local Viagra factory have been giving local men (and male dogs) random erections. Since the factory opened in 1998, residents have reported that you don’t need to ingest the drug to enjoy its famous reaction; just inhale.

“One whiff and you’re stiff,” said Debbie O’Grady, a bartender at the Ferry Boat Inn. “As they say, there’s something in the air—not that we need it, of course. But for some fellas with problems in that department it can be a blessing.”

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The Spanish fashion retailer Zara has been accused of stealing its designs, animal cruelty, polluting the environment and treating its workers poorly. However, so long as shoppers kept buying, the company wasn’t deterred by the bad publicity. Now the workers who make the clothing sold at Zara and other “fast fashion” retailers are sending buyers a little reminder of the suffering their dollars support. They have been slipping “protest notes” into the pockets and sewing them into the seams of clothing.

“I made this item you are going to buy, but I didn’t get paid for it,” their message reads. It urges shoppers to help pressure Zara into paying them. The workers were employed by third-party manufacturer Bravo Tekstil, which closed suddenly in 2016. The factory’s owner took several months of wages owed to its workers and disappeared. Bravo also produced garments for stores Mango and Next.

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