Monthly Archive: November 2015

The Most Psychic Spots In The United States

Want to speak with the dead or learn a little something about your future? Well, if you live in the US, then you need to visit Lily Dale, New York, or Cassadaga, Florida. These little towns are jam-packed with psychics, modern-day Spiritualists practicing their trade in the most psychic cities in America.

The Surprising Science Behind The Six Degrees Of Kevin Bacon

Six Degrees of Kevin Bacon was a party game based on the idea that Kevin Bacon had been in so many movies with so many co-stars that he could be linked to anyone else in Hollywood through only a maximum of six people. When mathematicians started looking at the formulas behind that theory, they cracked the code on something bigger and started on their way to proving that it works for all of us. According to the formula, anyone on the planet can be linked to anyone else in the same way, and it’s the same way that other networks—like the spread of disease or the latest best seller—act as well.

How An Arm Wrestling Match Won A Copyright Dispute

The contestants weren’t professional wrestlers. Instead, it was a 1992 PR matchup between Herb Kelleher, CEO of Southwest Airlines, and Kurt Herwald, CEO of Stevens Aviation called the “Malice in Dallas.” They were battling over the copyright to the phrase “Just Plane Smart,” which both companies had been using. Foregoing litigation, they settled it with a humorous arm wrestling match, in which Herwald ultimately won ownership of the slogan.

Is This A Sunrise Or A Sunset?

Say you have a still photo of the Sun hovering over the horizon. Can you tell if it’s a sunrise or a sunset? A pair of atmospheric physicists who have done considerable research cataloging and documenting the colors that go along with the beginning and the end of the day say you can’t tell the difference. They say the two events are symmetrical and one’s just running in a perfect reverse of the other. Neil deGrasse Tyson, though, says that you can use a simple trick to bust late-sleeping movie producers trying to pass off a sunset played in reverse as a sunrise. If it’s north of the Tropic of Cancer, the Sun should be moving up and to the right.

The Bizarre Tale Of The Heiress And The One-Legged Killer Clown

History is a strange place. In 1912, heiress Sophia Singer was found murdered. Suspicion fell on the couple she and her fiance had been staying with: a one-legged clown and his wife, a burlesque dancer. They claimed the whole thing was an accident and that they had only meant to rob her of her jewels and her recently inherited fortune. Even so, the clown got a life sentence in Joliet but supposedly managed to escape in 1925.

Texas Was Once The New Philippines

We could have been calling Texans “New Filipinos.” For much of its history, the state was called “Nuevas Filipinas” by the Spanish colonists. The name, however, lost popularity by the early 1800s in favor of its modern name, which doesn’t seem to be going anywhere.

The Difference Between Extraterrestrials And Ultraterrestrials

While both of these words are etymologically similar in terms of meaning “from beyond Earth,” they are used by conspiracy theorists and UFOlogists in markedly different ways. An extraterrestrial is generally considered to be an entity from beyond Earth but within the universe as we know it, such as from another planet or star system. Ultraterrestrials are beings who come from beyond the realm of human experience altogether, whether from a parallel universe, alternate dimension, or another plane of reality intersecting with our own. This theory is used to explain other strange phenomena that often accompany UFO sightings, such as time discrepancies, mysterious flying creatures, poltergeist activity, and mysterious Men in Black.

The Atomic World Of ‘Fallout’ Almost Happened In Real Life

The world of Bethesda’s juggernaut series Fallout is one where nuclear power was harnessed for the good of the world—until it all went sideways. That was very nearly the case in real life, as the US government poured tens of millions of dollars into the Plowshare Program. The idea behind the individual operations within Plowshare was to find new ways to use nuclear energy, including as a tool for large-scale construction and excavation, for extracting natural gas, and for generating steam to power generators. Even more terrifying, they considered a nuclear explosion beneath a nuclear waste treatment plant.

The Large-Scale Fistfights Of Renaissance Venice

Throughout the 16th and 17th centuries, Venice was a hotbed of violence between two rival factions, the Nicolotti and the Castellani. Tensions often came to a head in a series of bridge fights that became so popular among the city masses that they were often staged for the delight of visiting royalty and diplomats. Things got more and more out of control, though, and when Venice officials tried to take the people’s sharpened sticks away, fights weren’t just contained to bridges anymore. The bridge wars were first restricted to a weaponless, armor-free, bare-knuckled brawl. When people kept getting killed, they were outright forbidden in 1705.

How The Brain Processes Imagination And Reality Differently

The brain has long been one of science’s great mysteries, and with the improvement of technology, we’re slowly unlocking that mystery piece by piece. When researchers looked at the difference between how the brain processes real information and imaginary thoughts and images, they found that the pathway of information is reversed. Just where the imaginary information originates from isn’t known yet, but being able to trace the way visual information is processed against how ideas are created is the first step in understanding things like dreams and the creative process.