Saturday, October 25, 2014

Things I learned lately - 25 Oct

  • Lockheed Martin may be a year from building the first compact fusion reactor. Fusion reactors are a big deal because they are 10 times smaller than fission reactors, safer, more efficient and fuel can be obtained from the ocean and lithium deposits.
  • There's some great DC Comics superhero movies coming out over the next few years: Batman vs Superman (2016); Suicide Squad (2016); Wonder Woman (2017); Justice League Part 1 (2017); The Flash (2018); Aquaman (2018); Shazam (2019); Justice League Part 2 (2019); Cyborg (2020); Green Lantern (2020)
  • As of now, all state-run universities in Germany have no tuition. Not even for foreigners.
  • In Italy, cash still accounts for 75% of all purchases. In Sweden, 80% of all purchases are made electronically.
  • With Google Express, you can shop from a variety of stores in the same order and have stuff delivered to your door same-day. All for $95 per year. Orders above $15 are delivered free. Stores participating vary by location but include Staples, Whole Foods, PetSmart, Walgreen's and Costco. Currently, Google Express only operates in major US cities.
  • Pay attention to people's feet. If you approach two people in the middle of a conversation, and they only turn their torsos and not their feet, they don't want you to join in the conversation. Similarly, if you are in a conversation with a coworker who you think is paying attention to you and his or her torso is turned towards you but their feet are facing in another direction, they want the conversation to end.
  • Your actions affect your attitudes more than your attitudes affect your actions. "You can jump and dance FOR joy, but you can also jump and dance yourself joyful."
  • When a group of people laugh, people will instinctively look at the person they feel closest to in that group.
  • The reason that orange juice tastes awful after you brush your teeth is that toothpaste contains lauryl sulfate. This substance both binds to your sweet taste receptors, making your tongue less sensitive to sweet, and they eliminate some phospholipids, which make more bitter receptors available. The net effect is to deaden the sweet taste of the juice and heighten the bitter taste.
  • The name Jack derived from John thanks to the one time popular suffix -kin. The suffix -kin, simply indicated little, so Robin Hood’s Little John would have been named Jockin, which later gave rise to Jenkin, then Jakin, and then Jack. Similarly, we have Little Henry becoming Henkin, which later gave rise to Hankin, which was then shortened to just Hank.
  • Suzi Quatro was the first female bass player to become a rock star, before The Runaways, Heart and Joan Jett. 

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