From The Amazing Book of Useless Information
At the deepest point (6.8 miles), an iron ball would take more than an hour to sink to the ocean floor.
Over the years, the Niagara Falls have moved more than 7 miles from their original site.
The background radiation in Aberdeen is twice that of the rest of Great Britain.
(Sarai did not know what background radiation was, so she looked it up on Wikipedia: Background radiation is constantly present in the environment and is emitted from a variety of natural and artificial sources. Primary contributions come from:
* Sources in the earth. These include sources in food and water, which are incorporated in the body, and in building materials and other products that incorporate those radioactive sources;
* Sources from space, in the form of cosmic rays;
* Sources in the atmosphere. One significant contribution comes from the radon gas that is released from the Earth's crust and subsequently decays into radioactive atoms that become attached to airborne dust and particulates. Another contribution arises from the radioactive atoms produced in the bombardment of atoms in the upper atmosphere by high-energy cosmic rays.
-Which begs the question - What's up with Aberdeen???)
Numbering houses in London streets only began in 1764.
Within a few years of Columbus's discovery of America, the Spaniards had killed 1.5 million Indians.
In the Andes, time is often measured by how long it takes to smoke a cigarette.
The Scandinavian capital of Stockholm is built on nine islands connected by bridges.
The Tokyo World Lanes Bowling Center is the largest bowling establishment in the world, with 252 lanes.
The heaviest man recorded was Brower Minnoch of Bainbridge, Oregon, who was admitted to the hospital in Seattle saturated with fluid and suffering from heart and respiratory failure, and weighing more than 1,400 pounds. After 16 months in the hospital, he was discharged at 476 pounds, but was readmitted two years later after regaining almost 200 pounds. When he died in 1983, he weighed more than 798 pounds.
The cheetah is the fastest mammal on earth, and can accelerate from 0 to 45 miles per hour in two seconds. Top speeds of 71 miles per hour can be maintained for up to 300 yards. The fastest cheetahs have been clocked at over 90 miles an hour.
Thursday, July 30, 2009
From The Amazing Book of Useless Information
Thursday, July 23, 2009
From The Best Book of Useless Information Ever
A thirteen-year-old child found a tooth growing out of his foot in 1977.
Men without hair on their chests are more likely to get cirrhosis of the liver than men with hair.
In 1992, 5,840 people checked into emergency rooms with "pillow-related injuries" and 2,421 people checked in with injuries involving houseplants.
A study published in a 1995 issue of the Journal of Urology estimated that 600,000 men in the United States are impotent from injuries to their crotches, about 40 percent of them from too-vigorous bicycling.
Despite the large rat population in New York City, rats bite only 311 people in an average year. But 1,519 residents are bitten annually by other New Yorkers.
Two West German motorists suffered a head-on collision in heavy fog near the small town of Guetersloh. Each was driving slowly near the center of the road, and at the moment of impact both their heads were out of the windows. Both men were hospitalized with severe head injuries. Their cars weren't scratched.
A Cuban man was struck by lightning five times in twenty-two years.
Male rhesus monkeys often hang from tree branches by their prehensile penises.
Finches practice songs in their sleep.
Ostriches can run faster than horses and the males can roar like lions.
The heart of a blue whale only beats nine times a minute.
Wednesday, July 15, 2009
From The Best Book of Useless Information Ever
The average child recognizes more than two hundred company logos by the time he enters elementary school.
At General Motors, the cost of health care for employees now exceeds the cost of steel for cars.
In 1810, Peter Durand invented the tin can for preserving food.
Post office staff in Malaysia once found 21,000 undelivered letters stored in an apartment that used to be rented out by one of their colleagues.
Twelve percent of businessmen wear their ties so tight that they restrict the blood flow to their brains.
The screaming of an upset baby can damage hearing. Kids can scream at levels up to 90 decibels, and permanent damage can be caused at 85 decibels.
The ears secrete more earwax when you are afraid than when you aren't.
Wearing headphones for just one hour will multiply the number of bacteria in the ear 700 times.
About one-third of the human race has twenty-twenty vision.
If you sneeze too hard, you can fracture a rib. If you try to suppress a sneeze, you can rupture a blood vessel in your head or neck and die.
The three things pregnant women dream most of during their first trimester are frogs, worms, and potted plants.
In 37 percent of Americans, the thirst mechanism is so weak that it is often mistaken for hunger.
Seventy-five percent of Americans are chronically dehydrated.
Polar bear fur is not white, it's clear. Polar bear skin is actually black. Their hair is hollow and acts like fiber optics, directing sunlight to warm their skin.
Friday, July 10, 2009
Thursday, July 9, 2009
I am giving GoodReads.com a try, so bear with me. I moved over all my general fiction books that are currently on my blog and if I like GoodReads, I will move all my books over.
I don't know how it all works yet. I tried to delete a couple of shelves after I couldn't find a way to edit the names I gave them, but they were still showing on my screen so I am hoping they will disappear after I sign out and sign back in. If not, does anyone know how to get rid of them?
I also tried to add friends but it didn't look like anything happened and then when I went to check my friends list it was empty, so I tried it again. Hopefully no one got multiple messages from me! If so, I'm sorry!
I tried AllConsuming as part of the Learning 2.0 process, but I was not crazy about it and only loaded a few items to it. However, I am already wondering about the restriction of GoodReads - I would like a cool place to put books AND movies (on one site). If any of you have some recommendations, I would be happy to hear from you!
UPDATE: A few minutes later!
I figured out how to delete the shelves! Yaay! :) And I now have 2 friends! Double yaay!
Wednesday, July 8, 2009
I took out a subscription to Mental Floss magazine this year and so far I have been enjoying it. It has the kind of stuff I like - little short bits of information that may or may not be useful to you, but is always interesting. Here are a couple from the newest edition.
Modern Art That Saves The Planet
Who says modern art is pointless? In Minneapolis, the 30-foot tall abstract sculptures towering over the city's interstate don't just look pretty, they fight air pollution, too. The wavy structures are made from a special kind of photocatalytic concrete that actually sucks in carbon monoxide and other air pollutants. Even better, when sunlight hits the sculptures, the ultraviolet rays oxidize the offending chemicals and turn them into oxygen, water, and other compounds that don't make us wheeze. The process - which is similar to what goes on in your cars catalytic converter - keeps the sculptures pearly white and should help clean up the Twin Cities' air.
Pass Gas, Pleasantly
By now, you've probably heard that cow flatulence doesn't just smell bad; it's also bad for the environment. Cows release methane and ammonia - dangerous greenhouse gases that contribute to global warming. ...A recent study by Irish scientists shows that when cows are fed a diet containing 2 percent fish oil, their gas emissions drop by 21 percent. The fish oil works to kill the methane-producing bacteria in their guts.
Twitter Your Tomatoes
If your brown thumb is killing off every potted plant in sight, get your garden on Twitter. The micro-blogging site has teamed up with a company called Botanicalls to save dying houseplants across America. Here's how it works: Botanicalls makes a leaf-shape sensor that gauges the amount of water in a plant's soil. When the plant is thirsty, it notifies its owner via Twitter. But it doesn't stop there. It also sends electronic thank-you notes when the water comes.
Zoning Out, Guilt Free!
Feeling bad about surfing the Web while you're at work? Tell your conscience to put a sock in it. According to a new study, all that browsing actually makes you more productive. Researchers at the University of Melbourne found that workers who spent up to 20 percent of their workday leisurely perusing the Internet were 9 percent more productive than their counterparts who never strayed from their assignments. The researchers theorized that the Internet gives people a way to quickly "zone out" and then return to work with renewed focus.
Wednesday, July 1, 2009
From The Amazing Book of Useless Information, by Noel Botham
The first nipple rings, called bosom rings, appeared in Victorian Europe in the 1890s. They became fashionable among women, who often wore them joined together by a small gold chain.
In ancient Babylon, all women were required to serve as prostitutes in the temple before getting married.
On the island of Trobriand, a lover customarily bites off his lady friend's eyelashes.
In ancient Greece, young aristocratic wmen were deflowered by having their hymens pierced by a stone penis before marrying.
Beau Brummell started the craze for ultratight men's trousers in the early nineteenth century. Because they were so tight, the penis needed to be held to one side so as not to create an unsightly bulge. To accomplish this, some men had their penis pierced to allow it to be held by a hook on the inside of the trousers; this piercing was called a "dressing ring" because tailors would ask if a gentleman "dressed" to the left or the right and tailor the trousers accordingly. Tailors to this day will ask men if they dress to the left or the right.
The female bedbug has no sexual opening. To get around this dilemma, the male uses his curved penis to drill a vagina into the female.
Oculolinctus is a fetish whereby people are sexually aroused by licking a partner's eyeball.
When Vicks first introduced its cough drops to the German market, they were irritated to learn that the German pronunciation of "v" is "f" - which in German is the guttural equivalent of "sexual penetration." Not to be outdone, Puffs tissue tried to introduce its product, only to learn that puff in German is a colloquial term for a whorehouse.