Sunday, August 16, 2009

10 things I didn't know until last week

1. Yellow jerseys were initially associated with Tour de France to correspond with the colour of the paper of the sports newspaper, L’auto - the tour actually began as a publicity event for the paper. That led to the honour of wearing a yellow jersey while leading the race.
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2. The Royal Marsden Hospital in the UK was the first hospital in the world to be dedicated to cancer. It was founded in 1851 by a doctor who watched his own wife die from the disease.
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3. In Nepal, Gurkhas are referred to as ‘lahures’, after the city of Lahore where Gurkhas regiments once served.
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4. Newton referred to differential calculus - which both he and Gottfried Leibniz discovered independently - as fluxions.
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5. Scotland was ruled between 1040 and 1057 by King Macbeth - later to become the subject of William Shakespeare’s well-known tragedy. The play however is historically inaccurate.
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6. During his first voyage, Dutch seafarer and explorer Abel Tasman “discovered” Tasmania, New Zealand and Fiji, but managed to completely miss mainland Australia!
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7. Six of the 10 fastest elevators in the world are located in Asia.
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8. Alfred Thayer Mahan - a US navy officer and geostrategist - invented the term “Middle-East” in 1902.
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9. There are only 180 geo-stationary spots available for satellites orbitting Earth.
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10. When Anders Celsius (1701–1744) created the celsius scale, he invented it upside-down with 0 ℃ being the boiling point of water and 100 ℃ being the freezing point. It was reversed in the year of Celsius’ death by Carolus Linnaeus.
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