While Jeff Bezos was a theoretical physics student at Princeton, he was struggling with a difficult math problem. He brought it to one of his friends, who solved it just by looking at it. After that, he realized he was not going to be a good theoretical physicist, and quit the major.
2. There was a mysterious disease that existed in Guam. It was the leading cause of adult death between 1945 and 1956. Fruit bats were part of the local diet at the time and became extinct as a result of overhunting. A decline in fruit bat consumption led to a decline in the incidence of the disease.
3. Patrick Tadina, a 30-year-old Army veteran was the longest continuously serving Ranger in Vietnam. Due to his complexion and small size he could often pass as Vietcong while wearing pajamas and sandals to get within feet of the enemy. He earned two silver stars and 10 bronze stars, 7 with valor.
4. Stephanie Kwolek, the inventor of Kevlar was working on finding a new, lightweight substitute for steel belting in automobile tires, on fears of a looming oil shortage and in anticipation of a market for lighter tires. What resulted was a new fiber five times stronger than steel by weight.
5. Maya Moore, the best women’s basketball player in the world, retired early to fight for criminal justice reform. She helped overturn a wrongly convicted man who served 22 years of a 50-year sentence. His name is Jonathan Irons.
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In the USA, you can just un-adopt children at any point if you don't want them anymore.
7. With every bottle of Laphroaig Whisky, you are entitled to a lifetime lease on a plot of land in Scotland (1ft squared).
8. In the United States, 78% of people with the name Leslie are female, but in England 95% are male.
9. Commercial flight attendants and pilots are 4 times more likely to get cancer in their lifetime, because of the time they spend flying, with a thinner atmosphere and more solar particles. They receive 3 times more radiation a year than a nuclear plant employee.
10. Three-quarters of U.S. teens and adults are deficient in vitamin D, the so-called "sunshine vitamin" whose deficits are increasingly blamed for everything from cancer and heart disease to diabetes, according to new research.
Alfred Binet, the inventor of the IQ test did not create it with the intention of measuring intelligence. Instead, his intention was to classify the "mental age" of kids and identify the ones that weren't developing themselves well in school and sort of "rescue" them.
12. Captain James Martin Stag, President Eisenhower's Chief Meteorologist, whose defiant decision to delay the Allies' invasion of Normandy from June 5th to June 6th due to weather conditions was dubbed "The most important weather forecast of all time."
13. Alan Turing volunteered during the war and in the application form he answered a question that asked the applicant if they understood that by signing up they place themselves liable to military law as "No". No one noticed, he became a fine marksman and then got out by citing this technicality.
14. Nathan “Nearest” Green was an African-American who was born into slavery and was emancipated after the American Civil War. He was the master distiller who taught distilling techniques to Jack Daniel of the Jack Daniel Tennessee Whiskey.
15. The Gilmore Car Museum in Michigan offers a driver's training class to teach people of any age how to drive a Ford Model T that was built between 1908 and 1927.
McDonald's used to use an ingredient known as beef tallow — the rendered form of beef fat that's solid at room temperature — that gave McDonald's fries their signature rich and buttery flavor. However, this was replaced with 100% vegetable oil over concerns of high-cholesterol menu items.
17. Al Capone set up an empty storefront with a bookshelf, a broken piano and old tables and chairs to look like an antique store. With advice from a friend, Capone learned to carry himself with the air of a legitimate businessman. Capone printed cards that read: Second Hand Furniture Dealer.
18. There is no practical way to draw our solar system to a visible scale. With Earth reduced to pea diameter, Pluto would be the size of a bacterium, 1.5 miles from Jupiter. With Jupiter the size of a period, Pluto would still be 35 feet away from it, and reduced to the size of a molecule.
19. In 2009, three New Zealand blue ducks - two males and a female - were kept in a breeding program in England. However, the program was derailed (despite the efforts of the breeders and even the female duck) when the two male ducks hooked up with each other instead of with the female.
20. A bottlenose dolphin named Moko became famous when he rescued two Pygmy whales in March 2008. Moko swam up to the stranded whales who were trapped between a sandbar and a beach, and led them through a channel out into the open sea.
The Pareto principle, also known as the 80/20 rule states that for many events, roughly 80% of the effects come from 20% of the causes. For example, Microsoft has noted that by fixing the top 20% of the most-reported bugs, 80% of the related errors in a given system would be eliminated.
22. The 1952 Great Smog of London was so bad that the smog came indoors and movie screenings and concerts had to be canceled because it was more difficult to see inside a large room like a movie theater.
23. Most people in the ancient city of Rome lived in apartment buildings that lacked kitchens. Thus most people relied on prepared food that was sold at pubs, inns, and food stalls. Some establishments had countertops fitted with openings for pots that may have kept food warm for extended serving.
24. In order to enforce the "one-child policy", 324 million Chinese women were subjected to mandatory IUD insertions between 1980 and 2014, usually with a type that couldn’t be removed without major surgery.
25. Walt Disney almost died during the 1918 influenza pandemic. He became so sick he was released from the Army to go home so his parents could take care of him.