World’s Strangest

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The Rescue of Watson

(YouTube link) Watson is a three-legged stray that was picked up by Eldad Hagar of Hope for Paws. My dog had a leg amputated this past summer, and as much veterinary care and family support as she needed, I can hardly imagine a little dog going through that all alone. Watson is understandably frightened, but hungry [...]

7 Politicians Who Appeared on Game Shows

As we’ve been seeing lately, everything politicians have done since birth ends up being in the news—especially during election time. Game show appearances are no exception, so check out these seven politico contestants. Some did surprisingly well; others should definitely stick to their day jobs. 1. Ronald Reagan on I’ve Got a Secret, 1961 A pre-politics Reagan [...]

5 Questions: Watson Up, Doc?

Wednesday’s mentalfloss.com 5 Questions quiz: Watson Up, Doc?

A New Twist in the Sad Saga of Little Albert

A few years ago we linked to the sad story of Little Albert, an infant who was a psychological test subject in John B. Watson’s experiment on fear. He conditioned the child to be afraid of rats, a fear which generalized to all furry animals. At the time, we said no one knew what happened [...]

Welcome to Bubbleland: Life on a Strange Little Chunk of Kentucky

For most of its journey from Minnesota to the Gulf of Mexico, the Mississippi River takes a pretty direct path. Sure, it zigs east here and zags west there, but nothing too crazy. Around Kentucky, though, the river’s course gets a little convoluted. It turns north before heading south again in several places. These detours [...]

Extreme Editing

Writers are constantly told of the importance of editing: say it in fewer words. At the Webby Awards ceremony last weekend, the representatives of the winning websites were limited to an acceptance speech of only five words. Each had to really think about what was important to say. Some speeches were funny, some political, some [...]

The Late Movies: This Is Jeopardy!

I’m still pretty amped up from the epic showdown of man vs. machine on Jeopardy! IBM’s Watson completely dominated a pair of Jeopardy! vets, including flossy favorite Ken Jennings. Delving into the depths of YouTube, I decided to unearth a few classic moments from the show, while lamenting the fact that SNL’s Celebrity Jeopardy! spoofs [...]

Ken Jennings Illustrates his Battle with Watson

Reddit member guantes ordered a signed copy of Ken Jennings’ book and requested he draw a picture of his Jeopardy battle with the computer named Watson. The result was so cool that the autographed title page had to be shared with everyone. Link

Who Will Be Famous in 10,000 Years?

Tyler Cowen, an economist and the blogger behind Marginal Revolution, was asked by a reader: Who do you think will still be famous in 10,000 years? People from history or now. Shakespeare? Socrates? Hawking? He answered (in part): In that case, I’ll go with the major religious leaders (Jesus, Buddha, etc.), Einstein, Turing, Watson and Crick, Hitler, the [...]

How Watson Could Have Been Defeated on Jeopardy

IBM’s Watson computer beat two human opponents on Jeopardy. Would this strategy have worked? via Borepatch