1. First grader wins national handwriting award---despite being born without hands





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2. Ten Narnia Resources


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3. Talking With Your Fingers

We think of the elegant letters even modestly educated Civil War soldiers wrote and wonder how we got from "I know I shall be thinking all the time 'If it was just my darling Loulie how different it would be' " to "C U later."

Yet the brevity, improvisation and in-the-moment quality of e-mails and texts are those grand old defining qualities of spoken language. Keyboard technology, allowing us to produce and receive written communication with unprecedented speed, allows something hitherto unknown to humanity: written conversation. In this sense, they are not "writing" in the sense we are accustomed to. They are fingered speech.




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4. How to Be a Better Flosser



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5. How Much Money You Need To Realistically Recreate The Scrooge McDuck 'Gold Coin Swim'

In most money circles (insider tip: "money circles" is a term used by only the most elite investors), wealth is measured exclusively by how closely one can recreate this famed animation. It has come to represent success in America and anything less than doing the backstroke amongst a sea of Earth's rarest metal should be considered an abject failure. A main problem of this measure, however, is that there is no agreed-upon Scrooge McDuck quantity of gold. In order to give the young investor a goal to shoot for, and to clear up this age-old question once and for all, the following is a precise judgment of exactly how money you need to be successful.


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6. Can You Make Yourself Smarter?



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7. Weird News of the Week: Naples man charged with felony, accused of not paying for soda at McDonald's

After filling a courtesy cup with soda Thursday at the McDonald's soda fountain and then leaving the restaurant, Mark Abaire, 52, of the 500 block of 14th Street North, was arrested by Collier deputies and now faces a felony theft charge, a sheriff's report shows.

A manager told sheriff's deputies that Abaire entered the store and asked for a glass of water around 10 p.m. Although the employee told him the cup was for water, Abaire filled it with soda at a fountain machine and sat outside the restaurant, according to an arrest report.


(Via: Neatorama)

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8. 101 Spectacular Nonfiction Stories




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9. It was the best of tomes ... the quintessential Charles Dickens novel

Charles Dickens's novels are all about the characters. From Stage villain to Beatific virgin, from Devious lawyer to Ludicrous spinster, they are powered by archetypes that have seeped off the page and into our collective consciousness. But where to begin if you haven't yet encountered them between soft covers? Our fans' guide shows which of his novels assemble the strongest casts - the perfect start for a Dickensian voyage of discovery



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10. Cocaine Rots Your Brain: Seriously, Heavy Users Lose More Gray Matter



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11. How to Become an Expert Tightrope Walker

Life is a constant balancing act, especially if you're a tightrope walker. The best athletes make treading a circus high wire or a low-hanging slackline look effortless, but they're actually juggling complex challenges of perception and motor control. Now researchers have constructed a mathematical explanation of how such nimble acrobats remain upright. Their calculations point to a theoretical "sweet spot," or optimal conditions for a person to balance on a line with minimal effort. Such a model may help scientists better understand how the brain and body work together to pull off difficult tasks.


(Via: Neatormama)



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12. Ye Olde Explanation Of Where "Ye Olde" Comes From



(Via: Geekosystem)


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13. Food's Biggest Scam: The Great Kobe Beef Lie

I will state this as clearly as possible:
You cannot buy Japanese Kobe beef in this country. Not in stores, not by mail, and certainly not in restaurants. No matter how much you have spent, how fancy a steakhouse you went to, or which of the many celebrity chefs who regularly feature "Kobe beef" on their menus you believed, you were duped. I'm really sorry to have to be the one telling you this, but no matter how much you would like to believe you have tasted it, if it wasn't in Asia you almost certainly have never had Japan's famous Kobe beef.




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14. 10 Secrets from the Wonderful World of Disney



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15. The scientific myth that soda will dissolve your teeth

Will soda dissolve your teeth? The short answer is 'no,' and the longer answer is, 'no, of course not.' And yet there is a rumor, and has been for decades, that a nail dropped in coca cola will be dissolved in a few days --- which led to the widespread idea that the soda would dissolve teeth, too. The truly weird part is that there is a scientific underpinning to this myth.




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16. Animal Video of the Week: Mr. Frog, sitting on a bench, patiently waiting for a bus





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17. Why Did Missing Children Start Showing Up on Milk Cartons?

It all started with a few pamphlets. In the 1970s, many police departments were hesitant to intervene when noncustodial parents made off with their children. They viewed the incidents as domestic disagreements rather than as true kidnappings. Frustrated custodial parents launched a movement to combat the problem, giving the crime a name: child snatching. Advocacy groups distributed pamphlets containing pictures of snatched children to principals and schoolteachers, because the noncustodial parent often enrolled the child in a new school under a different name.




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18. A Video Game Designed to Treat Depression Worked Better Than Counseling

Researchers from the University of Auckland in New Zealand just published promising results of a study comparing a video game they designed to help treat depression in teenage kids against traditional face-to-face counseling. Called SPARX, the game guides the players through a number of challenges that help practice handling various life situations and emotions that come with them.


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19. Keeping Secrets Can Make You Physically Weaker

You've likely heard that keeping secrets is a burden emotionally, but new research in the Journal of Experimental Psychology suggests it may also be a physical encumbrance. The research suggests that when you're holding onto a secret you can't judge spatial distance and you rate physical tasks more difficult than they really are.




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20. Want to Feel Fuller After Breakfast and Lunch? Toss Some Almonds in Your Cereal



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21. The Inflation of Everything

Price inflation remains relatively subdued in the rich world, even though central banks are busily printing money. But other types of inflation are rampant. This "panflation" needs to be recognised for the plague it has become.

Take the grossly underreported problem of "size inflation", where clothes of any particular labelled size have steadily expanded over time. Estimates by The Economist suggest that the average British size 14 pair of women's trousers is now more than four inches wider at the waist than it was in the 1970s. In other words, today's size 14 is really what used to be labelled a size 18; a size 10 is really a size 14.



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22. HistoricalLOL of the Week




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23. What truths does "truth serum" sodium pentothal actually reveal?

The famed chemical sodium pentothal, which is commonly known as truth serum, has been a mainstay of spy flicks for decades. In real life, scientists have tested it on spies, psychiatric patients, pregnant women, and suspected criminals. They all talked, but did they say something meaningful? Or was it just what the people around them wanted to hear?


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24. 6 Geographical Terms With Shortest Names in the World



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25. Can Classical Music Bring You Closer to God?

The performance of sacred music in concert halls has become so common that we rarely pause to reflect on what is lost in translation. Outside its intended context, church music, like a Madonna displayed on a museum wall, loses its ritual power. What was conceived as an act of communal worship - a mass for the dead, a re-enactment of the Passion - becomes a professional spectacle offered up for the edification of a passive audience.




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26. I Learned to Speak Four Languages in a Few Years: Here's How



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27. The Kindle Index: What City Buys the Most E-Readers?

If the self-appointed "elite" members of society avidly read, then the "elite of the elite" must avidly e-read, right? Who are these people and where do they live? That city must surely be the most elite and cultured city in America. As a company based in San Francisco, we naturally assumed that the most literate, cultured and forward-thinking people live here. Of course there are philistines who prefer less cerebral pastimes, but they probably live in unseemly places like the South, Midwest, and Portland.

It turns out all of our preconceived notions about e-reader adoption was wrong. When you dig into the data about where Kindles are actually bought and sold, the most "cosmopolitan" cities in America are soundly beaten by mid-sized cities in the Midwest and South. Moreover, our data suggests that dedicated e-readers aren't very popular devices anywhere. In the landscape of consumer electronics, e-readers barely register.



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28. How-To of the Week: Prepare a Salad to Last All Week for Just a Few Dollars



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29. The 13 Most Useless Majors, From Philosophy to Journalism



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30. Sea-Monkeys and X-Ray Spex: Collecting the Bizarre Stuff Sold in the Back of Comic Books




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31. Cause of Brain Freeze Revealed



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32. The first ever vending machine stopped people from stealing holy water

This device was designed to prevent temple denizens from taking more holy water than they had purchased. Today, we use vending machines to acquire a never ending supply of mid-afternoon snacks, while Heron's holy water device along with several other "miraculous" inventions still amaze two-thousand years later.


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33. Why Do Old Books Smell?



(Via: 22 Words)

Joe Carter is an editor for The Gospel Coalition and the co-author of How to Argue Like Jesus: Learning Persuasion from History’s Greatest Communicator. You can follow him on Twitter.

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Joe Carter


Joe Carter is an editor for The Gospel Coalition and the co-author of How to Argue Like Jesus: Learning Persuasion from History’s Greatest Communicator. You can follow him on Twitter.

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