50 Random Fact List #199

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1 Ajay Bhatt

Ajay Bhatt

Ajay Bhatt, the inventor of the USB had originally intended for it to be flippable, however, that idea was scrapped due to the extra cost. Despite USB becoming the standard, he still regrets that decision. “In hindsight, we blew it,” he said.

2. In 1992, a man named Stefan Mandel won a $27,036,142 jackpot, 6 second prizes, 132 third prizes, and 135 minor prizes in one lottery, by buying every single combination possible – Over 5.5 million tickets. All 44 US states with lotteries have since changed their laws to prevent this.

3. In 2014, an 89-year-old World War 2 veteran named Bernard Shaw went missing from his nursing home. It turned out that he went to Normandy for the 70th anniversary of D-Day landings against the nursing home’s orders. He left the home wearing a grey mack concealing the war medals on his jacket. 

4. Pringles had to use supercomputers to engineer their chips with optimal aerodynamic properties so that they wouldn’t fly off the conveyor belts when moving at very high speeds.

5. As a 12-year-old slave boy (Edmond Albius) in 1841 invented the technique for pollinating vanilla orchids profitably. Without this technique, it’s unlikely that vanilla would be nearly as well known as it is today.

6 Americans


With the exception of college or military service, 37% of Americans have never lived outside their hometown, and 57% of Americans have never lived outside their home state.

7. After a two-year impasse with no new Pope, the Cardinals elected a hermit monk who sent them an angry letter, threatening them with divine judgment. He became Celestine V. He served for 5 months before implementing a law that allowed Popes to abdicate. He abdicated a week later.

8. After the band Weezer covered the song “Africa” by Toto, Toto covered the song “Hash Pipe” by Weezer as a response.

9. Alcatraz’s reputation as a tough as nails prison was a Hollywood myth. Many inmates requested transfer there on account of its good food and one man per cell policy.

10. Prior to 1996, there was no requirement to present an ID to board a plane. The policy was put into place to show the government was “doing something” about the crash of TWA Flight 800.

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11 Pushinka


Soviet leader Nikita Khrushchev gifted US President John F Kennedy a dog called Pushinka during the cold war. She, later on, had puppies; which Kennedy referred to as “the pupniks.”

12. The Florida fairy shrimp, which was discovered in 1952, was found to be a unique species of fairy shrimp that was specific to a single pond in Gainesville, Florida. When researchers returned to that pond in 2011, they realized that it had been filled in for development, thereby causing the species to go extinct.

13. Nuclear Semiotics is an interdisciplinary field of research tasked with warning people more than 10,000 years from now about nuclear waste, when all known languages may have disappeared.

14. Many courses in German Universities are actually offered in English, and international students don’t even have to meet the German language requirements to apply. In Germany, undergraduate students don’t pay any tuition fees in all the public universities since October 2014.

15. American actor James Earl Jones had a terrible stutter as a child and was functionally mute for 8 years because of it. A high school teacher helped him end his silence through Jones’ love of poetry.

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16 Longyearbyen


It’s illegal to die in Longyearbyen, Svalbard (Norway) because dead bodies don’t properly decompose because of how far north it is. If someone is dying, every effort will be made to ship them to the mainland.

17. In Canada, in the event that you need to call 911 for someone who’s overdosed, you won’t get arrested for possession of controlled substances or charged under “The Good Samaritan Drug Overdose Act.”

18. Julie d’Aubigny was a 17th-century traveling swordswoman. Among her other exploits, when her female lover was sent to a convent, she also entered the convent, stole the body of a dead nun, placed it in her lover’s bed, escaped with her lover and burnt the convent down.

19. Legendary director/actor/pilot John Huston once flew over a celebrity golf tournament and dropped 5,000 ping pong balls on it.

20. The language spoken in Wakanda is Xhosa, an official language of South Africa and Zimbabwe and John Kani who played King T’Chaka is a native speaker of that language.

15 Most Controversial & Costly Blunders in History

21 Disney’s Space Mountain

Disney's Space Mountain

Disney’s Space Mountain uses fans to blow air on you to create the illusion that you are going faster than you really are.

22. The scene in Fight Club where Tyler Durden is explaining the cost of a recall when “A car built by my company crashes and burns with everyone trapped inside” is based on an actually leaked memo from GM and Ford.

23. During World War 2, King George VI was at war with Germany as the King of the UK, but as King of Ireland, he was also at peace with Germany and validated the credentials of German ambassadors. After World War 2, he was at war with himself as King of India and separately King of Pakistan.

24. In Germany, a doctor diagnosed a case of cobalt poisoning because the symptoms matched a case shown in an episode of Dr. House and he went on write a book on how to apply Dr. House’s diagnosis in real life.

25. During the Great Depression, the state of Arkansas was in such bad financial shape that the treasurer at one point reported a balance of $4.62 for the entire general revenue fund of the state.

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