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Animal sonar, echolocation, and noise pollution

Whales and dolphins have a tool called echolocation, a sonar which allows them to "see" their prey, even it's internal workings! Noise pollution in the water has a significant effect on whales ability to navigate, hunt, locate their pods, and reproduce.

Echolocating animals have two ears positioned slightly apart. The echoes returning to the two ears arrive at different times and at different loudness levels, depending on the position of the object generating the echoes. The time and loudness differences are used by the animals to perceive direction. With echolocation the bat or other animal can see not only where it's going but can also see how big another animal is, what kind of animal it is, and other features as well.
- wikipedia

Many modern submarines use their own sonar a low and mid-frequency sonar is so deafening the pressure waves affect animals on the cellular level, causing the equivalent of "the bends" or decompression sickness. For animals with echolocation this causes sonar function to fail and leaves these animals blind, if they're lucky. What often results is massive beachings (update: court blocks sonar 7/6/06)


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Augustus Caesar became the emperor of Rome in 27 BC, and he ruled the empire for over forty years. This period of history became known as the time of the "Great Roman Peace" ... In A.D. 80 the Colosseum was finished where battles were reenacted, where gladiators fought, and where crowds were entertained by savage violence entertained by the spectacle of Christians being eaten by lions.

Sometime between 407-411 Constantine III legalized Christianity. Check out this list, it was easier than you think to be emperor, the hard part is staying emperor. http://www.roman-emperors.org/impindex.htm

n AD 404 a tragic event finally put an end to the gladiators. A Christian monk named Telemachus entered the arena in Rome and tried to separate two combatants. The crowd went berserk, climbed over the walls into the arena and tore the monk limb from limb. The Emperor Honorius permanently banned all gladiator contests.

The Romans were also known to sentencing Christians to death by play. In a live play, when it came time for a death scene, the real actor would be replaced by the accused and the execution would be performed live on stage. yikes


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The rule of 72

The rule of 72 is used to find the number of years it takes to double your money at a given interest rate.

(72/[interest rate]) = years until a principle doubles

So, how long will it take to double your money at eight percent interest? Divide 8 into 72 and you get 9 years.

If you collect 7% on your savings in a little over 10 years the amount will be double what it is today.

The rule of 72 also means that you can determine the time it takes for a population to double if it is growing at a steady rate by solving this function:

(72/[rate of growth]) = years for population to double

Reference: http://www.moneychimp.com/features/rule72.htm

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Dedicated fathers in the Antartic

A father Emperor penguin withstands the Antarctic cold for 60 days or more to protect his eggs, which he keeps on his feet, covered with a feathered flap. During this entire time he doesn't eat a thing. Most father penguins lose about 25 pounds while they wait for their babies to hatch. Afterward, they feed the chicks a special liquid from their throats. When the mother penguins return to care for the young, the fathers go to sea to eat and rest.

Reference: Animal Planet

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Who was it that said "The british are coming?"

It is commonly understood that Paul Revere said "The british are coming, the british are coming."

However, Revere never said "The British are coming," this would have made no sense at the time since they considered themselves British.

Revere instead said, "The Regulars are coming out! The Regulars are coming out!" But, that doesn't have quite the same ring to it.

Reference: http://bessel.org/revere.htm

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The longest coldest night on earth

The darkest time of year at the North Pole is the Winter Solstice, approximately December 21. There has been no sunlight or even twilight since early October. The darkness lasts until the beginning of dawn in early March Now you can see what's happening in the arctic at http://www.arctic.noaa.gov/gallery_np.html

Reference: http://www.arctic.noaa.gov/gallery_np.html

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Why we sometimes are unaware, or at least alter-awared

Have you ever been so absorbed in a book or tv that you weren't aware of somebody entering or leaving the room? This is one of many definitions of a trance state


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ZZ top fact that was true, at least at one time.

The only member of the band ZZ Top without a beard has the last name Beard.


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Prohibition is a great idea, if you are Al Capone

On January 16, 1919 the 18th Amendment, authorizing Prohibition, went into effect in the United States. The home of the free took a beating that day, and it opened the door for such mobster's as Al Capone to make $100,000,000 (100 million dollars) a year at a time when most folks made $1,000 a year.

Reference: http://en.wikipedia.org

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How many times can you fold a piece of paper?

No matter its size or weight, no piece of paper can be folded in half more than seven times!

Reference: Thrillvill video game

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Investing facts, tip about hot stocks

The price of hot stocks like IPOs and tech stocks can rise and fall suddenly.

"In these fast markets when many investors want to trade at the same time and prices change quickly, delays can develop across the board. Executions and confirmations slow down, while reports of prices lag behind actual prices. In these markets, investors can suffer unexpected losses very quickly."

"To avoid buying or selling a stock at a price higher or lower than you wanted, you need to place a limit order rather than a market order. A limit order is an order to buy or sell a security at a specific price. "

Reference: http://www.sec.gov/investor/pubs/onlinetips.htm

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How do you count cards in blackjack?

A blackjack card counter performs a simple calculation...over and over and over again. The goal is to bet more money when a deck is loaded with big cards 10,Jack, Queen,King, & Ace because the chances of a dealer busting increases. To figure out when the deck favors the player they do the following:

The card counter begins with zero. For every card that appears either they add 1, minus 1, or keep it the same. If the card is a 2,3,4,5,6 you add 1. If the card is 10,j,q,k,ace you subtract 1. If it's a 7,8,9 the score remains the same.

So, a card counter will bet small while they keep count and if their tally reaches +5 or greater they increase their bet. This system relies on the law of large numbers which says while the bettor will lose or win money on a given day over time the bettor will have the advantage and thus be profitable long-term.

p.s. This is much easier said than done. This formula was introduced in Beat The Dealer in 1966 and the casinos are doing just fine. Good luck!

Reference: "Beat the dealer" - Edward O. Thorp

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Time telling

There are 3 basic ways of telling time. a) rotational : rotation of the earth b) dynamic: motion of the moon and planets c) atomic: oscillation within atoms.


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How long is a year?

The exact length of time for the earth to rotate around the sun is 365 days 5 hours 48 minutes and 46 seconds


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Getting a taxicab ride.

The term, "taxicab", was formed from combining the word, taximeter and cabriolet. Taximeter is a tool for measuring time and distance and a cabriolet is a 2 wheeled 1 horse carriage.


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When will that squirrel come out of hibernation?

The longest time spent in hibernation goes to the Burrowground squirrel with 9 months of hibernation.


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What is an IPO?

Initial public offering (IPO) — The first time a company sells stock to the public. An IPO is a type of a primary offering, which occurs whenever a company sells new stock, and differs from a secondary offering, which is the public sale of previously issued securities, usually held by insiders. Some people say IPO stands for "Immediate Profit Opportunities." More cynicIt's Probably Overpriced."

Reference: http://moneycentral.hoovers.com/global/msn/index.xhtml?pageid=1954

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What was the best political joke of 2006?

According to about.com and their top 25 funny jokes "I stand by this man because he stands for things. Not only for things, he stands on things. Things like aircraft carriers, and rubble, and recently flooded city squares. And that sends a strong message that no matter what happens to America she will always rebound with the most powerfully staged photo-ops in the world." --Comedian Stephen Colbert, roasting Bush at the White House Correspondents' Association dinner.

Our favorite: “To the vice president's credit, he did own up to it (shooting hunting partner in the face). On FOX News he said the fault was his, he can't blame anybody else. Boy, it's amazing, the only time you get accountability out of this administration is when they are actually holding a smoking gun." --Bill Maher

Reference: http://politicalhumor.about.com/od/funnyquotes/a/funnyquotes2006_2.htm

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The thirties were tough times ... building dams helped

The nineteen thirties were a challenging decade with the Great Depression and the stock market crash.

President Franklin D. Roosevelt created a plan called The New Deal a set of initiatives to build infrastructure including dams for the exploding demand for electricity while providing people with jobs.


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What year did the United States land on the moon?

On July 20, 1969 the first manned spacecraft landed on the moon. The Moon was first visited by Soviet spacecraft Luna 2 in 1959. It is the only extraterrestrial body to have been visited by humans. The last time the moon was visited by man was in December of 1972.


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