Random #365 – 50 Eclectic Random Facts

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26Adolphe Sax's Accidental Journey

Adolphe Sax's Accidental Journey

Adolphe Sax, the son of instrument designers, had a history of accidents. As a child, he fell from a 3-story height, drank acidic water, swallowed a pin, fell into a frying pan, was burned in a gunpowder blast, and fell into a river. Despite this, he grew up to invent the saxophone.

27. In 1942, the Manhattan Project required 5000 tons of copper, which was in short supply. To avoid delays, it borrowed 430 million troy ounces of silver from the US Treasury for use in magnets. The silver was fully returned by 1970, as the equipment was decommissioned.

28. The Pink Panther cartoon show was created due to the success of the character in the opening credits of the Pink Panther films.

29. The Longyou Caves in China, a mysterious network of man-made caves over 2,000 years old, were never documented in historical records and were only rediscovered by local farmers in 1992.

30. Due to the ongoing dispute between Canada and the USA over Machias Seal Island, anyone born on the island is entitled to claim dual citizenship in both countries.

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31Canada's Ross Rifle Challenge

Canada's Ross Rifle Challenge

Canada developed the Ross Rifle when the British denied them Lee-Enfields during the 1899-1902 South African War. Post-war, Britain advised Canada to switch to the Lee-Enfield, but Canada declined. The Ross Rifle proved ineffective in World War I, leading Canada to adopt the Lee-Enfield in 1916.

32. In Game of Thrones, the Night's Watch wore capes made from affordable Ikea rugs.

33. Neil Armstrong believed they had a 90 percent chance of returning to Earth but only a 50-50 chance of successfully landing on the moon during their initial attempt. The uncertainties of descending from lunar orbit to the surface hadn't been fully tested.

34. Meerkats are the world's most murderous mammals, with 20% falling victim to violent deaths caused by other meerkats, often their own mother, sister, or aunt.

35. In the original form of sushi, the rice was solely meant to preserve the fish and was typically discarded uneaten.

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36Aircraft Maintenance's ABCD System

Aircraft Maintenance's ABCD System

Aircraft maintenance follows the ABCD system. A and B checks are routine; C is more extensive; and D checks occurring every 6-10 years, demand complete disassembly and paint stripping.

37. The myth of the "Seven Sisters," found worldwide, is believed to have originated over 100,000 years ago based on the movement of the corresponding constellation.

38. Potatoes yield 17.8 million calories per acre, sufficient to feed a family of four on less than 1/4 acre.

39. There were no women special agents in the FBI from 1928 to 1972, as J. Edgar Hoover banned the recruitment of women in 1924 and fired the three women agents serving at that time.

40. The Soviet space probe Phobos-2, intended for Mars' moon exploration, failed due to two of its three computers malfunctioning. The decision-making process based on computer votes led to an impasse as the single healthy computer couldn't outvote the two dead ones.

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41Cuba's Doctor Export Economy

Cuba's Doctor Export Economy

Cuba's primary economic export is doctors, which it leases to foreign governments for $11 billion annually. Approximately 50,000 Cuban doctors serve 67 countries concurrently.

42. At age 12, Will Smith's grandmother discovered his notebook of profanity-laden rap lyrics and left a note advising him that true intelligence didn't require cursing. This prompted him to avoid profanity in his music.

43. The Apollo spacecraft's non-volatile memory involved manual weaving of copper wires between magnetic cores, bit by bit. Software had to be perfect because any revisions to the code were impossible.

44. Former WWE star Dave Bautista concealed inhalers under wrestling rings to manage his asthma during matches.

45. Due to their "rude and abusive" behavior, young women eventually replaced the first telephone switchboard operators, who were boys.

46Kraft's WWII Mac and Cheese

Kraft's WWII Mac and Cheese

Kraft's boxed mac and cheese became popular during World War II due to a cheese surplus, allowing customers to obtain two boxes for one ration point.

47. Match Day for medical residents results in a single organization choosing all residencies in a day, limiting residencies and leading to the infamous 80-100 hour resident workweek. Congress also passed laws to sustain this practice.

48. The Great Sphinx of Giza's nose has been missing since the 1400s, attributed to a zealot's actions in 1378. Archaeological findings suggest the nose was chiseled or broken off.

49. Jupiter's moon Io experiences ground movement of up to 300 feet due to tidal effects from Jupiter. Earth's typical tidal range is 3 feet in open oceans.

50. Grizzly bears in Yellowstone help manufacturers test their products' bear-resistance. If a bear breaches a container within 60 minutes, manufacturers must reconsider their design.

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