Did you know that waterfalls themselves, and not just the water in them, are constantly moving? The water rushes forward and falls, but the waterfall itself is slowly sliding back. This paradox can easily be explained by the laws of nature.
The birthplace of traffic signs is thought to be Paris. In 1908, the first World Road Congress was held here, and the very first traffic signs were adopted: “bump,” “curve,” “intersection,” and “grade-level railroad crossing.” Gradually, the number of traffic signs increased, and today there are many dozens of different systems for their use.
Why would we discuss coins today, in the age of electronic transactions, credit cards, Bitcoin, and blockchain? Such hard currency may seem outdated, but, despite their archaism, coins remain a symbol of their countries’ financial independence.
Did you know that a postcard is not just a souvenir? This small piece of thin cardstock has a long history, and the card itself reflects this. A letter without an envelope was once considered improper, but later it helped people send messages from the front lines. Nowadays, some postcards are regarded as real collector’s items.
Many centuries ago, riding waves was a favorite pastime of the natives of Polynesia, and today it’s a professional sport that’s even included in the Olympic games. Over hundreds of years, the boards and styles of surfing have changed, but there is still a sense of magic when you see a wave appear out of nowhere and a person hop on, carving a line in the water that immediately disappears into turbulent foam. However, behind any “magic” are the laws of physics, and surfing is no exception. Here, we’ll tell you all about where the waves come from and how surfers manage to “saddle” them.
In imaginings of the future in ﬁlm and television such as Futurama or Alien, people are easily frozen for hundreds of years or placed into a state of “hypersleep” during ﬂights to distant stars. Although these stories are still ﬁctitious, somewhere on Earth several hundreds of frozen bodies are just waiting to be discovered. How does this freezing process work, and might we be able to one day bring them back to life?
Would you like to know what words were on everyone’s lips ten years ago? We don’t need a time machine to find out! All we need is the Oxford English Dictionary, a group of linguists, a computer algorithm, and all the English-speaking people on the planet.
How can anyone say with certainty that we’ve never been visited by aliens from outer space? Thousands of meteorites have, at some point, made their way through space to fall literally at our feet. This month, we’re going to find out where humans discovered these extraterrestrial rocks, what threatens them today, and why just 200 years ago scientists didn’t even believe in their existence.
Most of the people on Earth currently live in cities, but many of them don’t realize that the urban climate they experience is different than outside the city. Why does this happen, and what consequences can it have for city populations?
On November 14th, 2007, engineer Fred Simms pulled the plug on the electric supply that ran from a substation to 10 East 40th Street in Manhattan. Thus, the 125-year “War of the Currents” ended with a victory for the prominent engineers Nikola Tesla and George Westinghouse: direct current electricity service was finally eliminated from local electric power distribution systems. But was this victory final?