leftorium

International Lefthanders Day

  August 13 is International Lefthanders Day. It was first observed on  August 14, 1976  to promote awareness of the inconveniences facing left-handers in a predominantly right-handed world. The day celebrates the uniqueness and difference of lefthanders who make up seven to ten percent of the world’s population.   Historically  left-handedness has had negative meanings […]

Radarange-Microwave-Oven

Accidental Inventions: Microwave Oven

  Heating food by microwave was discovered accidentally in 1945 by self-taught American engineer Percy Spencer. Spencer was working with the American company Raytheon on active radar sets when he noticed his Mr. Goodbar chocolate bar melting in his pocket.   Spencer experimented with the idea by microwaving  popcorn, and and eggs. He created a […]

Adam-and-Eve-Fernando Botero

Assumptions: The “Forbidden Fruit” is an Apple

The “forbidden fruit” mentioned in the Book of Genesis is commonly assumed to be an apple, and is often depicted in Western art, but the Bible never identifies what type of fruit it is. The fruit may have been depicted as an apple due to a dual meaning of  the Latin word malum, a noun […]

HALLOWEEN

Halloween: 10 Interesting Factoids

 1. The word Halloween  first appeared in the 16th century and is a Scottish variant of All-Hallows-Even (“evening”), that is, the night before All Hallows Day. Although the phrase All Hallows is found in Old English (mass-day of all saints), All-Hallows-Even is itself not in use until 1556.   2. Some (though it is disupted) […]

Secret-of-the-old-clock-nancy-drew

Carolyn Keene: Who Really Wrote Nancy Drew?

Carolyn Keene is the pseudonym of the author(s) of the Nancy Drew mystery stories and The Dana Girls mystery stories, both produced by the Stratemeyer Syndicate. First published in 1930, Mildred Wirt Benson and Harriet Adams (Stratemeyer’s daughter) are often credited as the primary writers of Nancy Drew books. They were initially paid $125 for […]

FROM THE ARCHIVES

Camel

Camels Do Not Store Water in Their Humps

Contrary to popular belief, camels do not store water in their humps. The humps contain a store of fatty tissue that minimizes heat-trapping insulation throughout the rest of their body. When metabolized, the tissue acts as a source of energy, and yields more than 1 g of water for each 1 g of fat converted through reaction […]

Google1998

“BackRub” – The Birth of Google

  Google began in January 1996 as a research project by Larry Page and Sergey Brin when they were both PhD students at Stanford University in California. The pair originally named their new search engine “BackRub”, because the system checked backlinks to estimate the importance of a site.   Eventually, the name was changed to […]

grondhog-day

Groundhog Day: February 2

Groundhog Day is a holiday celebrated on February 2 in the United States and Canada. According to folklore, if it is cloudy when a groundhog emerges from its burrow on this day, it will leave the burrow, signifying that winter-like weather will soon end. If it is sunny, the groundhog will supposedly see its shadow […]