Category Archives: Articles

Saccadic Masking

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Unknown to most, thousands of times each day we momentarily lose sight of the world around us. Known as saccadic masking, it is a function of the brain protecting us from suffering through blurred images that would otherwise be produced when our eyes move or shift. A saccade is a rapid eye movement between the places where the eye rests […]

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Blackboard Chalk Isn’t Chalk

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Ubiquitous in many classrooms since the 19th century, chalk and chalkboards are familiar to most of us. White, powdery and prone to sticking to those surfaces where it is put (and just as easy to wipe away), chalk and its accompanying board are excellent instructional aids. Notably, however, most chalk today isn’t technically chalk at all, but gypsum. Chalk and […]

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The Perfect Town

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The town of Celebration was first loosely imagined by Walt Disney himself, though the current town differs wildly from Disney’s original idea. Whereas Disney pictured a “perfect” futuristic city where technology blended seamlessly with real life and all possible needs were taken care of, an idea that served as the basis for the Epcot theme park in Disney Land, Michael Eisner (the CEO of Disney at […]

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The Youngest To Serve: The Story of 12 Year Old Calvin Graham

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Calvin Graham was the youngest of seven children of a poor Texas farm family and because of his abusive stepfather, he and one of his older brothers decided to move out. Calvin supported himself by selling newspapers and delivering telegrams on weekends and after school. He was just eleven when he first thought of lying about his age to join the Navy. The […]

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The Wild and Wacky World of Mating in the Animal Kingdom

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Karen A. asks: How prevalent is homosexuality in animals? Are there any animals besides humans that have members that are exclusively homosexual? While it is sometimes claimed that only humans engage in bisexual or homosexual relationships, this is far from the truth and the practice is actually quite common in the animal kingdom. For example, nearly 10% of male sheep […]

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The Truth About the Surprisingly Recent Invention of the Tea Bag, and the Women Who Really Invented It

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Mark A. asks: Who invented tea bags? Legend says that brewing tea dates back to around 2737 BC, when tea leaves fell into water being boiled for Emperor Shennong of China. There does not appear to be any hard evidence of tea being discovered this way, but evidence we do have suggests that brewing tea did indeed likely start in […]

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The Teen Who Funded His College Education By Asking People For Pennies

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The term crowdfunding, a process by which a person raises money by asking others for small donations, has become popular online during the past few years. Websites like Kickstarter and Indiegogo offer individuals a platform from which to make their cases to an international community. Mike Hayes of Illinois used crowdfunding to pay for all four years of his college […]

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The Claque

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The word “claque” is derived from the 16th century French term “claquer”, which roughly meant “to clap”, and is largely used to refer to a group of individuals hired to give a pre-determined response to a performance, be it positive, negative or anything in between. Individual members of a claque are generally referred to as “claquers” or “claqueurs” and for a […]

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