World’s Strangest

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Alpha Centauri Has a Planet

Image: ESO/L. Calcada/N.Risinger (skysurvey.org) Good news, everyone! Astronomers have discovered that Alpha Centauri, the closest known star system to our own Sun and subject to many science fiction classics, actually has an Earth-like planet: Alpha [...]

Why Aren’t There B Batteries?

Reader Donna wrote in wondering why there are AA, AAA, C and D batteries, but no B. Well, there used to be, but they’re not really needed anymore. Getty Images Around the time of World War I, American battery manufacturers, the War Industries Board, and a few government agencies got together to develop some nationally uniform specifications [...]

Paper Airplane Producers: Morning Types vs. Evening Types

The following article is reprinted from The Annals of Improbable Research. by David L. Dickinson, Dept. of Economics, Appalachian State University, and Todd McElroy, Dept. of Psychology, Appalachian State University People differ in their diurnal (time of day) preferences: some are morning-types and others are evening-types. These differences are explored in a unique experiment design in which [...]

Calculator Words

In my day, middle school math class was pretty boring, and led to some remarkable goofing off. (I’m sure math class isn’t like that today; surely no modern kid would waste time in school.) For me, math class was an opportunity to explore new worlds with my calculator — but not new mathematical worlds. The [...]

Hidden Scott Pilgrim Game in Fark

Interweb heavyweight Fark has a pretty neat Scott Pilgrim Easter Egg special feature that is accessible when you type in the secret Konami code on its homepage. For those of you who don’t know, it’s Up, Up, Down, Down, Left, Right, Left, Right, B, A. You get to challenge the 7 Evil Exes from the Scott [...]

Being Grumpy is Hazardous to Your Health

We’ve all heard about the Type A personality, but did you know that there are Type B,C, and D? T Goodman of InventorSpot explains the difference between the personality types, and why it’s bad to be the grumpy Type D: Now, Type D’s have been described as anxious, irritable, and pessimistic. They are the grumps and [...]

15 Famous People Who Used to Teach

Students, we know you may not be all that ecstatic about seeing your teachers – and the homework they assign – as the school year starts up. Pay attention in class, though; you never know what hidden talents your teachers might have. Just look at all of these famous former teachers: 1. Gene Simmons The tongue-flicking [...]