36 Curious, Weird, and Totally Not Boring Random Facts to Know – Part 137

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1Black hole Interstellar

The software used to create the black hole in the movie 'Interstellar' is a full implementation of Einstein's equations in 40,000 lines of C++. The scene was rendered in thousands of 23-megapixel IMAX frames on a 32,000-core render farm at about 20 core-hours per frame.


2. In 2004, corporate attorney Nathan Sawaya quit his lucrative job to build Lego professionally so he could "get away from the daily grind". His sculptures now command six-figure prices each.


3. Caitlin is an Irish name historically pronounced "Kathleen" or thereabouts (in the same way that "Sean" is "Shawn"). In non-Irish countries, it has been pronounced "Kate-Lynn" or similar since the 1970's.


4. Discovery Channel lied to a scientist named Jonathan Davis in order to get him to participate in a fake documentary on Voodoo sharks for Shark Week and edited the interviews on Bull Sharks to make it appear as if he was researching the Cryptid Shark. He did not know what the program was about until it aired.


5. John Wayne wore a toupee beginning in about 1948. Wayne felt more confident wearing his toupee and never denied it. He often joked saying "It's not phony, it's real hair. Of course, it's not mine, but it's real."


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6Earth

If Earth stopped spinning suddenly, the atmosphere would still be in motion with the Earth's original 1100 mile per hour rotation speed at the equator. All of the land masses would be scoured clean of anything not attached to bedrock.


7. The elephant shrew was named simply for its long nose, but recent genetic evidence has found that it's more closely related to the elephant than it is to the shrew.


8. Disney’s “Baymax” character design was inspired by Chris Atkeson’s pioneer work in soft robotics. His research in Carnegie Mellon University’s Robotics Institute is based on a theory: “For robots to effectively operate in our world, they’re going to have to be as squishy as we are”.


9. Mrs. Beeton's Book of Household Management is an extensive guide to running a household in Victorian Britain, published in 1861. It recommends boiling pasta for an hour and forty-five minutes and states that potatoes are "suspicious; a great many are narcotic, and many are deleterious."


10. Harry Truman’s official memorial isn’t a physical one like the Lincoln Memorial, but rather is a federal scholarship for graduate school worth $30,000 that’s given out to college juniors interested in public service.


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11Jim Wilson

If you keep hearing the name "Jim Wilson" on a commercial flight then it is a secret code for a dead body.


12. On July 7, 2017, a flight (Air Canada Flight 759) landing in San Francisco descended to an altitude of 25 meters and as close as 9 meters laterally to four planes waiting below before aborting. 1,000 passengers were at imminent risk and with only seconds to spare, narrowly avoided "the greatest aviation disaster in history."


13. Magic Johnson retired before the 1991-1992 NBA Season after announcing he was HIV positive, but fans voted him into the 1992 All-Star Game anyway, for which he returned and won Most Valuable Player.


14. Dunkin Donuts used to have a handle on them to dunk the donuts.


15. Wallace and Gromit saved Wensleydale Cheese. The company was on the brink of closing down, before a chance mention in an animated short. Sales increased shortly afterward, saving the company.


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16Elton John

In 1968, Elton John tried to commit suicide because of relationship problems with a woman. He later ran into lyricist Bernie Taupin, who tried to make John more comfortable with his sexuality. The situation inspired Taupin and John to create the song, 'Someone Saved My Life Tonight.'


17. For the 1999 Disney film "Tarzan", English actor Phil Collins sang all his own songs for the Spanish, French, Italian, and German translations of the soundtrack.


18. In The Dark Knight, Heath Ledger wore a prosthetic covering his lower lip, which often became unglued while filming, which is how his famous mouth-licking tick was born.


19. The Omaha zoo had a prairie dog exhibit and when they got out, the zoo lets them roam free. Omaha actually has a perfect natural climate for the prairie dogs and they interact with visitors, often taking their food.


20. The neutron star 'PSR J1748-2446ad' rotates on its axis 716 times per second and is the fastest known spinning neutron star. At its equator, it spins at 24% of the speed of light.


21Royalty

You are likely descended from royalty, but that doesn’t make you special. Everyone of European descent alive today can claim ancestry from medieval kings and queens based on statistical analysis of their ancestry.


22. The bug known as the walking stick doesn't need to mate. Unfertilized eggs will turn into exact copies/clones of the mother.


23. The Horn shark lays conical shaped eggs with a spiral flange running around the outside, which enables the female to wedge it into a crevice, making it difficult for predators to access.


24. Dinner was once the main meal of the day, served around one or two in the afternoon, while 'supper' was a much lighter meal, or even just a snack, eaten around sundown.


25. A week after the Kent State massacre in 1970, a Gallup poll revealed nearly 60% placed total blame on the students, while only 10% blamed the guardsmen.

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