Sunday, March 25, 2007

10 things I didn't know until last week

1. Prolific and influential industrial designer Raymond Loewy - whose work includes the Lucky Strike cigarette pack, the Coca-Cola bottle, Air Force One, Coldspot refrigerator, the K4S and GG1 aerodynamic locomotives, the Studebaker Starlight coupe and the interiors of NASA’s Skylab - was known as the father of streamlining.
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2. The famous book in which Pierre de Fermat added a note that he had the proof to the problem that bears his name was Claude Gaspar Bachet’s translation of the Arithmetica of Diophantus.
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3. George Bush Sr. was nicknamed The Resume because of his long and varied experience.
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4. ‘Aliyah’ (meaning ascent) and ‘yeridah’ (meaning descent) represent the banishment and return of Jews from their homeland and these twin recurring themes form the backbone of the Jewish historical narrative.
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5. Astroturf was originally sold as Chemgrass. It was renamed AstroTurf after its first well-publicized use at the Houston Astrodome stadium.
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6. Thanks to the phenomenon of midnight sun, parts of Antarctica receive more solar energy per day in summer than do lands near the equator, making sunburn and snow-blindness (from intense glare) serious risks.
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7. Helen Mirren’s birth name is Ilyena Vasilievna Mironov.
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8. The colour of ‘White’ diamonds is graded on a scale of “D” to “Z” - where “D” is colorless and “Z” is yellow.
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9. Contrary to what you see in action movies, dropping a lit cigarette onto a trail of gasoline won’t ignite it, assuming normal oxygen levels and no unusual circumstances. The gasoline has limited contact with the hottest, glowing part of the ash - as the outer ash layer is much cooler and prevents much heat from reaching the gasoline.
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10. Clint Eastwood is also an accomplished musician. He has composed the the theme songs for ‘Unforgiven’, ‘A Perfect World’, ‘The Bridges Of Madison County’ and ‘Absolute Power’. He has also composed the score for ‘Million Dollar Baby’, ‘Mystic River’ and ‘Flags of Our Fathers.”
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