Relatively Interesting http://www.relativelyinteresting.com Tue, 17 Apr 2018 12:50:12 +0000 en-US hourly 1 39163838 A list of failed technology predictions http://www.relativelyinteresting.com/list-of-failed-technology-predictions/ http://www.relativelyinteresting.com/list-of-failed-technology-predictions/#respond Tue, 17 Apr 2018 12:50:12 +0000 http://www.relativelyinteresting.com/?p=10441 Predicting the future is hard, and, unless if you’re a psychic (which you’re not, because they don’t exist), then it’s even harder to predict the outcome of certain technological advancements.  Which will survive?  Which will be adopted by the masses and become part of mainstream technology?  Think about that while you watch a movie on […]

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Predicting the future is hard, and, unless if you’re a psychic (which you’re not, because they don’t exist), then it’s even harder to predict the outcome of certain technological advancements.  Which will survive?  Which will be adopted by the masses and become part of mainstream technology?  Think about that while you watch a movie on your LaserDisk or Betamax players.

Here’s a list of failed technology predictions that were oh-so-wrong:

“With over fifteen types of foreign cars already on sale here, the Japanese auto industry isn’t likely to carve out a big share of the market for itself.” — Business Week, 1968

“By 1985, machines will be capable of doing any work Man can do.” — Herbert A. Simon, 1965

“Everything that can be invented has been invented.” — Charles Duell, US patent office, 1899

“There is no reason anyone would want a computer in their home.” — Ken Olson, president, chairman and founder of Digital Equipment Corp. (DEC), maker of big business mainframe computers, arguing against the PC in 1977.

“We will never make a 32 bit operating system.” — Bill Gates

“Lee DeForest has said in many newspapers and over his signature that it would be possible to transmit the human voice across the Atlantic before many years. Based on these absurd and deliberately misleading statements, the misguided public … has been persuaded to purchase stock in his company …” — a U.S. District Attorney, prosecuting American inventor Lee DeForest for selling stock fraudulently through the mail for his Radio Telephone Company in 1913.

“There is practically no chance communications space satellites will be used to provide better telephone, telegraph, television, or radio service inside the United States.” — T. Craven, FCC Commissioner, in 1961 (the first commercial communications satellite went into service in 1965).

“To place a man in a multi-stage rocket and project him into the controlling gravitational field of the moon where the passengers can make scientific observations, perhaps land alive, and then return to earth – all that constitutes a wild dream worthy of Jules Verne. I am bold enough to say that such a man-made voyage will never occur regardless of all future advances.” — Lee DeForest, American radio pioneer and inventor of the vacuum tube, in 1926

“A rocket will never be able to leave the Earth’s atmosphere.” — New York Times, 1936.

“Flight by machines heavier than air is unpractical (sic) and insignificant, if not utterly impossible.” – Simon Newcomb; The Wright Brothers flew at Kittyhawk 18 months later.

“Heavier-than-air flying machines are impossible.” — Lord Kelvin, British mathematician and physicist, president of the British Royal Society, 1895.

“There will never be a bigger plane built.” — A Boeing engineer, after the first flight of the 247, a twin engine plane that holds ten people

“Nuclear-powered vacuum cleaners will probably be a reality in 10 years.” -– Alex Lewyt, president of vacuum cleaner company Lewyt Corp., in the New York Times in 1955.

“This is the biggest fool thing we have ever done. The bomb will never go off, and I speak as an expert in explosives.” — Admiral William D. Leahy, Chief of Staff to the Commander in Chief of the Army and Navy during World War II, advising President Truman on the atomic bomb, 1945.  Leahy admitted the error five years later in his memoirs

“The energy produced by the breaking down of the atom is a very poor kind of thing. Anyone who expects a source of power from the transformation of these atoms is talking moonshine.” — Ernest Rutherford, shortly after splitting the atom for the first time.

“There is not the slightest indication that nuclear energy will ever be obtainable. It would mean that the atom would have to be shattered at will.” — Albert Einstein, 1932

“The cinema is little more than a fad. It’s canned drama. What audiences really want to see is flesh and blood on the stage.” -– Charlie Chaplin, actor, producer, director, and studio founder, 1916

“The horse is here to stay but the automobile is only a novelty – a fad.” — The president of the Michigan Savings Bank advising Henry Ford’s lawyer, Horace Rackham, not to invest in the Ford Motor Co., 1903

“The Americans have need of the telephone, but we do not. We have plenty of messenger boys.” — Sir William Preece, Chief Engineer, British Post Office, 1878.17. “This ‘telephone’ has too many shortcomings to be seriously considered as a means of communication. The device is inherently of no value to us.” — A memo at Western Union, 1878 (or 1876).

“The world potential market for copying machines is 5000 at most.” — IBM, to the eventual founders of Xerox, saying the photocopier had no market large enough to justify production, 1959.

“I must confess that my imagination refuses to see any sort of submarine doing anything but suffocating its crew and floundering at sea.” — HG Wells, British novelist, in 1901.

“X-rays will prove to be a hoax.” — Lord Kelvin, President of the Royal Society, 1883.

“The idea that cavalry will be replaced by these iron coaches is absurd. It is little short of treasonous.” — Comment of Aide-de-camp to Field Marshal Haig, at tank demonstration, 1916.

“How, sir, would you make a ship sail against the wind and currents by lighting a bonfire under her deck? I pray you, excuse me, I have not the time to listen to such nonsense.” — Napoleon Bonaparte, when told of Robert Fulton’s steamboat, 1800s.

“Fooling around with alternating current is just a waste of time. Nobody will use it, ever.” — Thomas Edison, American inventor, 1889 (Edison often ridiculed the arguments of competitor George Westinghouse for AC power).

“Home Taping Is Killing Music” — A 1980s campaign by the BPI, claiming that people recording music off the radio onto cassette would destroy the music industry.

“Television won’t last. It’s a flash in the pan.” — Mary Somerville, pioneer of radio educational broadcasts, 1948.

“[Television] won’t be able to hold on to any market it captures after the first six months. People will soon get tired of staring at a plywood box every night.” — Darryl Zanuck, movie producer, 20th Century Fox, 1946.

“When the Paris Exhibition [of 1878] closes, electric light will close with it and no more will be heard of it.” – Oxford professor Erasmus Wilson

“… As you may well know, Mr. President, ‘railroad’ carriages are pulled at the enormous speed of 15 miles per hour by ‘engines’ which, in addition to endangering life and limb of passengers, roar and snort their way through the countryside, setting fire to crops, scaring the livestock and frightening women and children. The Almighty certainly never intended that people should travel at such breakneck speed.” — Martin Van Buren, Governor of New York, 1830(?).

“Rail travel at high speed is not possible because passengers, unable to breathe, would die of asphyxia.” — Dr Dionysys Larder (1793-1859), professor of Natural Philosophy and Astronomy, University College London.

“The wireless music box has no imaginable commercial value. Who would pay for a message sent to no one in particular?” — Associates of David Sarnoff responding to the latter’s call for investment in the radio in 1921.

Look into the black mirror

Predicting today’s technology is just as difficult.  Shows like Black Mirror or Altered Carbon, paint a high tech, bleak future.  So what does the future have in store for today’s tech trends, like augmented reality (AR), virtual reality, robotics, artificial intelligence, genetics (CRISPR), nano-technology, space travel, cryptocurrencies, and autonomous vehicles?

We simply don’t know… yet.

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See how every movie monster and robot compares in size http://www.relativelyinteresting.com/see-how-every-movie-monster-and-robot-compares-in-size/ http://www.relativelyinteresting.com/see-how-every-movie-monster-and-robot-compares-in-size/#respond Fri, 13 Apr 2018 16:01:44 +0000 http://www.relativelyinteresting.com/?p=10253 Movie robots and monsters come in all shapes and sizes, from the very small to the impossibly large. But just how wide is that range? How gargantuan are giant big screen creatures compared to one another? Is Colossal Titan bigger than a kaiju from Pacific Rim? How does the Iron Giant stack up against Optimus […]

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Movie robots and monsters come in all shapes and sizes, from the very small to the impossibly large. But just how wide is that range? How gargantuan are giant big screen creatures compared to one another? Is Colossal Titan bigger than a kaiju from Pacific Rim? How does the Iron Giant stack up against Optimus Prime?  And where does the King of the Monsters, Godzilla, fit into all of this?

Stop arguing, because now you can see firsthand with these fantastic size comparison videos.

Robot Movie Size Comparison

The YouTube channel MetalBallStudios has lined up some of cinema’s most famous robots so you can appreciate just exactly how big they are compared to each other, starting at the bottom with the Minority Report’s spider bots (seven inches), all the way up to Doctor Who’s CyberKing (525 feet).

Monster Movies Size Comparison

But what’s a giant robot without a memorable leviathan to fight, which is why we also got this monster size comparison video, which goes from Monsters, Inc’s Mike Wazowski (a little over two feet tall), all way up to the Exogorth from The Empire Strikes Back, a creature so large that… we don’t want to spoil it for you.

 

 

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The Periodic Table of Elements in Pictures http://www.relativelyinteresting.com/periodic-table-elements-pictures/ http://www.relativelyinteresting.com/periodic-table-elements-pictures/#respond Mon, 02 Apr 2018 14:43:02 +0000 http://www.relativelyinteresting.com/?p=10417 This pictorial periodic table is colorful, fun, and packed with information for anyone with an interest in chemistry. In addition to the element’s name, symbol, and atomic number, each element box has a drawing of one of the element’s main human uses or natural occurrences, making this version of the periodic table practical and easy […]

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This pictorial periodic table is colorful, fun, and packed with information for anyone with an interest in chemistry. In addition to the element’s name, symbol, and atomic number, each element box has a drawing of one of the element’s main human uses or natural occurrences, making this version of the periodic table practical and easy to digest.

The table is color-coded to show the chemical groupings. Small symbols pack in additional information: solid/liquid/gas, color of element, common in the human body, common in the earth’s crust, magnetic metals, noble metals, radioactive, and rare or never found in nature.

It is produced by Keith Enevoldsen at elements.wlonk.com, and is available for purchase as a poster.  Visit the site to take an interactive tour.  Click on the images below for a larger, more legible version.

Periodic Table of Elements in Pictures
Periodic table of elements in pictures

This textual periodic table is packed with even more information.

In addition to the element’s name, symbol, and atomic number, each element box contains a textual description of the element’s physical properties and a list of several of its human uses and/or natural occurrences.

The table is color-coded to show the chemical groups, and each group is described in a panel of the same color.

Other info panels describe atomic structure, chemical bonding, and radioactivity. It provides some simple rules-of-thumb about atomic weights and valence numbers.

Periodic Table of Elements in WordsPeriodic table of elements in text

Speaking of Periodic Tables… What is the Periodic Table?

Here’s a simple definition from the Wikipedia:

The periodic table of the chemical elements is a list of known elements.  In the table, the elements are placed in the order of their atomic numbers starting with the lowest number. The atomic number of an element is the same as the number of protons in that particular atom.

In the periodic table, the elements are arranged into periods and groups.

  • A row of elements across the table is called a period.   Each period has a number; from 1 to 8. Period 1 has only 2 elements in it: hydrogen and helium. Period 2 and Period 3 both have 8 elements. Other periods are longer. Elements in a period have consecutive atomic numbers.
  • A column of elements down the table is called a group. There are 18 groups in the standard periodic table. Each group has a number: from 1 to 18. Elements in a group have electrons arranged in similar ways, which gives them similar chemical properties (they behave in similar ways). For example, group 18 is known as the noble gases because they are all gases and they do not combine with other atoms.

The periodic table has been used by chemists to observe patterns and relationships between elements. There are 3 main groups in in the Periodic Table; metals, metalloids, and gases.  Elements to the bottom and far left of the table are the most metallic, and elements on the top right are the least metallic. (e.g. cesium is much more metallic than helium).

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Why you’re terrible at fact-checking http://www.relativelyinteresting.com/why-youre-terrible-at-fact-checking/ http://www.relativelyinteresting.com/why-youre-terrible-at-fact-checking/#respond Fri, 30 Mar 2018 19:33:03 +0000 http://www.relativelyinteresting.com/?p=10413 Why you stink at fact-checking Lisa Fazio, Vanderbilt University Here’s a quick quiz for you: In the biblical story, what was Jonah swallowed by? How many animals of each kind did Moses take on the Ark? Did you answer “whale” to the first question and “two” to the second? Most people do … even though […]

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Why you stink at fact-checking

Lisa Fazio, Vanderbilt University

Here’s a quick quiz for you:

  • In the biblical story, what was Jonah swallowed by?
  • How many animals of each kind did Moses take on the Ark?

Did you answer “whale” to the first question and “two” to the second? Most people do … even though they’re well aware that it was Noah, not Moses who built the ark in the biblical story.

Psychologists like me call this phenomenon the Moses Illusion. It’s just one example of how people are very bad at picking up on factual errors in the world around them. Even when people know the correct information, they often fail to notice errors and will even go on to use that incorrect information in other situations.

Research from cognitive psychology shows that people are naturally poor fact-checkers and it is very difficult for us to compare things we read or hear to what we already know about a topic. In what’s been called an era of “fake news,” this reality has important implications for how people consume journalism, social media and other public information.

Failing to notice what you know is wrong

The Moses Illusion has been studied repeatedly since the 1980s. It occurs with a variety of questions and the key finding is that – even though people know the correct information – they don’t notice the error and proceed to answer the question.

In the original study, 80 percent of the participants failed to notice the error in the question despite later correctly answering the question “Who was it that took the animals on the Ark?” This failure occurred even though participants were warned that some of the questions would have something wrong with them and were given an example of an incorrect question.

Who lined the animals up two by two?
Edward Hicks

The Moses Illusion demonstrates what psychologists call knowledge neglect – people have relevant knowledge, but they fail to use it.

One way my colleagues and I have studied this knowledge neglect is by having people read fictional stories that contain true and false information about the world. For example, one story is about a character’s summer job at a planetarium. Some information in the story is correct: “Lucky me, I had to wear some huge old space suit. I don’t know if I was supposed to be anyone in particular – maybe I was supposed to be Neil Armstrong, the first man on the moon.” Other information is incorrect: “First I had to go through all the regular astronomical facts, starting with how our solar system works, that Saturn is the largest planet, etc.”

Later, we give participants a trivia test with some new questions (Which precious gem is red?) and some questions that relate to the information from the story (What is the largest planet in the solar system?). We reliably find positive effects of reading the correct information within the story – participants are more likely to answer “Who was the first person to step foot on the moon?” correctly. We also see negative effects of reading the misinformation – participants are both less likely to recall that Jupiter is the largest planet and they are more likely to answer with Saturn.

These negative effects of reading false information occur even when the incorrect information directly contradicts people’s prior knowledge. In one study, my colleagues and I had people take a trivia test two weeks before reading the stories. Thus, we knew what information each person did and did not know. Participants still learned false information from the stories they later read. In fact, they were equally likely to pick up false information from the stories when it did and did not contradict their prior knowledge.

Can you improve at noticing incorrect info?

So people often fail to notice errors in what they read and will use those errors in later situations. But what can we do to prevent this influence of misinformation?

Expertise or greater knowledge seems to help, but it doesn’t solve the problem. Even biology graduate students will attempt to answer distorted questions such as “Water contains two atoms of helium and how many atoms of oxygen?” – though they are less likely to answer them than history graduate students. (The pattern reverses for history-related questions.)

Many of the interventions my colleagues and I have implemented to try to reduce people’s reliance on the misinformation have failed or even backfired. One initial thought was that participants would be more likely to notice the errors if they had more time to process the information. So, we presented the stories in a book-on-tape format and slowed down the presentation rate. But instead of using the extra time to detect and avoid the errors, participants were even more likely to produce the misinformation from the stories on a later trivia test.

Next, we tried highlighting the critical information in a red font. We told readers to pay particular attention to the information presented in red with the hope that paying special attention to the incorrect information would help them notice and avoid the errors. Instead, they paid additional attention to the errors and were thus more likely to repeat them on the later test.

The one thing that does seem to help is to act like a professional fact-checker. When participants are instructed to edit the story and highlight any inaccurate statements, they are less likely to learn misinformation from the story. Similar results occur when participants read the stories sentence by sentence and decide whether each sentence contains an error.

It’s important to note that even these “fact-checking” readers miss many of the errors and still learn false information from the stories. For example, in the sentence-by-sentence detection task participants caught about 30 percent of the errors. But given their prior knowledge they should have been able to detect at least 70 percent. So this type of careful reading does help, but readers still miss many errors and will use them on a later test.

Our natural mode isn’t to critically push back against all information we encounter.
hitesh014/Pixabay.com, CC BY

Quirks of psychology make us miss mistakes

Why are human beings so bad at noticing errors and misinformation? Psychologists believe that there are at least two forces at work.

First, people have a general bias to believe that things are true. (After all, most things that we read or hear are true.) In fact, there’s some evidence that we initially process all statements as true and that it then takes cognitive effort to mentally mark them as false.

Second, people tend to accept information as long as it’s close enough to the correct information. Natural speech often includes errors, pauses and repeats. (“She was wearing a blue – um, I mean, a black, a black dress.”) One idea is that to maintain conversations we need to go with the flow – accept information that is “good enough” and just move on.

And people don’t fall for these illusions when the incorrect information is obviously wrong. For example, people don’t try and answer the question “How many animals of each kind did Nixon take on the Ark?” and people don’t believe that Pluto is the largest planet after reading it in a fictional story.

The ConversationDetecting and correcting false information is difficult work and requires fighting against the ways our brains like to process information. Critical thinking alone won’t save us. Our psychological quirks put us at risk of falling for misinformation, disinformation and propaganda. Professional fact-checkers provide an essential service in hunting out incorrect information in the public view. As such, they are one of our best hopes for zeroing in on errors and correcting them, before the rest of us read or hear the false information and incorporate it into what we know of the world.

Lisa Fazio, Assistant Professor of Psychology, Vanderbilt University

This article was originally published on The Conversation. Read the original article.

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Here’s what ancient ruins from around the world would look like if reconstructed today http://www.relativelyinteresting.com/heres-what-ancient-ruins-from-around-the-world-would-look-like-if-reconstructed-today/ http://www.relativelyinteresting.com/heres-what-ancient-ruins-from-around-the-world-would-look-like-if-reconstructed-today/#respond Wed, 28 Mar 2018 19:17:10 +0000 http://www.relativelyinteresting.com/?p=10395 Ancient ruins give us a fascinating window into the past: how people lived, the spaces they inhabited, and what they did during their daily lives. Historians, architects and travelers alike marvel at these remnants of time past, but it’s often hard to get a sense of what these spectacular buildings would have looked like at […]

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Ancient ruins give us a fascinating window into the past: how people lived, the spaces they inhabited, and what they did during their daily lives. Historians, architects and travelers alike marvel at these remnants of time past, but it’s often hard to get a sense of what these spectacular buildings would have looked like at their peak.

Let’s take a look back in time and recreate some of our favorite ancient ruins in their original locations to see what they might look like today.

The Parthenon, GreeceMilecastle 39, England

Luxor Temple, Egypt

The Temple of Jupiter, ItalyArea Sacra di Largo Argentina – Temple B

The Pyramid of the Sun – Teotihuacán

Nohoch Mul Pyramid, Coba

 

Source:  Expedia

 

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32 of the most bizarre deep-sea creatures discovered so far http://www.relativelyinteresting.com/32-of-the-most-bizarre-deep-sea-creatures-discovered-so-far/ http://www.relativelyinteresting.com/32-of-the-most-bizarre-deep-sea-creatures-discovered-so-far/#respond Sat, 24 Mar 2018 17:00:12 +0000 http://www.relativelyinteresting.com/?p=10381 Science fiction writers don’t need to imagine what aliens from other planets might look like – they only need to look into the depths of the Earth’s oceans for inspiration.  From giant spider crabs, goblin sharks, and anglerfish to colossal squids, binocular fish, vampire squids and more; the deep-sea is home to a wide variety […]

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Science fiction writers don’t need to imagine what aliens from other planets might look like – they only need to look into the depths of the Earth’s oceans for inspiration.  From giant spider crabs, goblin sharks, and anglerfish to colossal squids, binocular fish, vampire squids and more; the deep-sea is home to a wide variety of creatures.

Source: https://www.nwf.org/Magazines/National-Wildlife/2018/Dec-Jan/Animals/Vertical-Migration

This infographic shows 32 of them, and the depths at which they live.  Thankfully, no human could ever achieve those depths, so don’t let these guys ruin your next beach vacation…

32 of the most bizarre deep sea creatures discovered so far
32 very bizarre deep sea creatures

Source: Alan’s Factory Outlet

Surprise!

How a sea monster catches its prey...

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The science behind the hardest hitter in boxing http://www.relativelyinteresting.com/the-science-behind-the-hardest-hitter-in-boxing/ http://www.relativelyinteresting.com/the-science-behind-the-hardest-hitter-in-boxing/#respond Sat, 24 Mar 2018 16:42:15 +0000 http://www.relativelyinteresting.com/?p=10365 At its core, boxing is a very simple sport: best your opponent by knocking them out or impressing the judges with your skill. Because of this, and because of the weight restrictions enforced through the divisions, the best boxers have to hone their skills and their power to the highest level to come out on top. […]

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At its core, boxing is a very simple sport: best your opponent by knocking them out or impressing the judges with your skill. Because of this, and because of the weight restrictions enforced through the divisions, the best boxers have to hone their skills and their power to the highest level to come out on top.

So, just how powerful is the hardest hitting boxer, and what impact do they have on their opponents when they land their punches?

The hardest hitter in boxing

Coming up on May 5, two of the best pound-for-pound boxers in the world will fight for a second time following a contentious draw decision in their first fight last year. Saul ‘Canelo’ Alverez is known as a great technical boxer with strong defensive skills. His opponent, Gennady Golovkin, is widely considered to be the most dangerous boxer in the sport, and one of the hardest hitters.

Golovkin is a dreadnaught in the ring: he’ll stalk his opponent, lay down his battering ram of a jab, land precision combinations at speed, and devastate with stone-fist shots to the body.

The science behind Golovkin

Gennady Golovkin has been boxing for a very long time. His professional boxing record may read 37-0-1, but he also racked up over 345 wins as an amateur. The Kazakh pugilist has perfected his technique and body into becoming a formidable force in boxing.

At peak force, Golovkin’s right hook deals a massive 2,159 pounds of force. On the other end, this is similar to being in a 35 mph car crash while sitting in the driver’s seat. It’s also a greater pounds of force measure than that of a 12-foot American alligator’s bite, which has been recorded at a bone-crunching 2,125 pounds of force.

Golovkin’s hand speed clocks in at 28.5 mph, taking just 0.125 seconds to hit that speed. The boxer’s hand speed acceleration hits 102 m/s2, which is far greater than that of a 2006 Bugatti Veyron (11.59 m/s2).

Like all others who came before him, Golovkin was unable to knock out Alvarez. But, given that the first fight ended with an incredibly dubious split decision, Golovkin will be looking to end this fight before the judges have their say. With his incredibly hard hits backing him up, Golovkin is an outsider here to win by knockout, technical knockout, or disqualification over Alvarez at +162.50. But he is expected to win at -187.50.

On the other end of Golovkin’s glove

One of the main elements that boxers train early on is how to get hit. They have to overcome their natural urges to flinch, close their eyes, or flap at the incoming punch because all of this can lead to them being exposed by real punches and dummies.

Strength and conditioning training for the head and torso is focussed upon, as is muscular endurance, as the muscles need to continue to operate despite taking hits throughout a fight. While boxers will train their necks to become stronger, and so limit the impact of punches to the head, they can’t always be fully effective.

 

Because the brain doesn’t fill the entirety of the cranial cavity, it can move around. When a boxer is hit in the head, the skull will first move because of the impact, but then the brain will also bounce within the skull.

Many different reasons could cause a knockout to occur from a punch to the head. Explanations range from the brain simply shutting down due to it being overwhelmed by chemical imbalance caused by the impact, to the blood and oxygen supply to the brain being altered by a sharp hit that in turn triggers the reflex of the carotid artery and results in unconsciousness.

When it comes to boxing, the fighters at the peak of the sport generate huge amounts of power, while their opponents have to suffer the massive amount of force thrown their way.

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5 Ways the Ancient Egyptians Continue to Influence Our Modern Lives http://www.relativelyinteresting.com/5-ways-the-ancient-egyptians-continue-to-influence-our-modern-lives/ http://www.relativelyinteresting.com/5-ways-the-ancient-egyptians-continue-to-influence-our-modern-lives/#respond Sat, 24 Mar 2018 16:41:21 +0000 http://www.relativelyinteresting.com/?p=10363 As ancient civilizations go, the Egyptians are undoubtedly one of the most well-known and influential in the history of our world. Famed for their building prowess, beautiful picture writing, and cosmetic artistry, the footprints they left behind continue to fascinate us even today. We know many of their names better than we do those of […]

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As ancient civilizations go, the Egyptians are undoubtedly one of the most well-known and influential in the history of our world. Famed for their building prowess, beautiful picture writing, and cosmetic artistry, the footprints they left behind continue to fascinate us even today.

We know many of their names better than we do those of our own rulers and politicians: Ramses the Great, Tutankhamun, Akhenaten, Nefertiti, Hatshepsut, Cleopatra… Their lives and times enchant those with an appreciation of art and culture, with many of their finest works rivalling modern masterpieces to this very day.

But they didn’t just leave behind a legacy of crumbling papyrus and towering pyramids. In fact, they continue to influence us even now…

Mathematics

Source: http://www.storyofmathematics.com/egyptian.html

You may have spent most of your school days inwardly cursing the inventors of mathematics, but did you know it was the Egyptians your vitriol was aimed at? Responsible for developing new and efficient ways to carry out both multiplication and division, as well as originating the principle of fractions, they so lauded the numerically talented that they had a special name for them: arpedonapti. Tasked with calculating the area of land, it was these much-valued professionals who would eventually pass their knowledge on to the Greeks.

Bowling

Source: Ancient Pages

If you’ve ever enjoyed a game of bowling with friends, you have the Egyptians to thank for this too. The creators of a very similar game, they left archaeological evidence of how they liked to entertain themselves behind for us to discover again thousands of years later, in the form of a “bowling” room dating back to the second century. Crude pins and small marbles were also uncovered in the grave of an Egyptian child, suggesting this was a pastime enjoyed by people of all ages, just as it is today.

Style

Source: Video from “Dark Horse” by Katy Perry

Perhaps the most famous remnant of yesteryear that they left behind was their inimitable style. To this day, we associate this ancient culture with blunt-fringed bobs, winged eyeliner, and loose, floating dresses, as well as beautifully drawn hieroglyphics, towering pyramids, and desert sands. This aesthetic can be found everywhere, from themed restaurants to casinos where you can enjoy exciting Egyptian online slots. No matter where these hallmarks are, we recognize them instantly.

Toothpaste

Personal hygiene may not be something we typically envisage when we think of ancient civilizations, but unlike the denizens of later eras, the Egyptians were actually a lot cleaner and more concerned with this than one might expect. In fact, it’s they who were responsible for inventing toothpaste, with a perfectly preserved recipe for this found in papyrus documents, and dozens of toothbrushes discovered in tombs to date.

Alphabets

Numerous alphabets are in existence today, and modern civilizations have the Egyptians to thank for inventing them. The first to use a phonetic alphabet (one in which each symbol represents a sound rather than a word), they developed 24 unilateral signs to indicate pronunciation. This idea would eventually catch on with the Phoenicians, who passed it to Greece and the Near East, and thus brought into being the prototype for all contemporary alphabets.

 

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Words for emotions people feel… but can’t quite explain http://www.relativelyinteresting.com/words-for-emotions-people-feel-but-cant-quite-explain/ http://www.relativelyinteresting.com/words-for-emotions-people-feel-but-cant-quite-explain/#respond Wed, 21 Mar 2018 19:10:56 +0000 http://www.relativelyinteresting.com/?p=10357 Have you been to Times Square, or another place that’s usually extremely busy, and it’s just… quiet? The place is usually bustling with people, but now, at this moment while you stand there, it’s eerily quiet.  That emotion – that feeling – has a name:  kenopsia. Here’s a collection of other strange and obscure emotions […]

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Have you been to Times Square, or another place that’s usually extremely busy, and it’s just… quiet? The place is usually bustling with people, but now, at this moment while you stand there, it’s eerily quiet.  That emotion – that feeling – has a name:  kenopsia.

Here’s a collection of other strange and obscure emotions and their names:

  1. Sonder: The realization that each passerby has a life as vivid and complex as your own.
  2. Opia: The ambiguous intensity of looking someone in the eye, which can feel simultaneously invasive and vulnerable.
  3. Monachopsis: The subtle but persistent feeling of being out of place.
  4. Enouement: The bittersweetness of having arrived in the future, seeing how things turned out, but not being able to tell your past self.
  5. Vellichor: The strange wistfulness of used bookshops.
  6. Rubatosis: The unsettling awareness of your own heartbeat.
  7. Kenopsia: The eerie, forlorn atmosphere of a place that is usually bustling with people but is now abandoned and quiet.
  8. Mauerbauertraurigkeit: The inexplicable urge to push people away, even close friends who you really like.
  9. Jouska: A hypothetical conversation that you compulsively play out in your head.
  10. Chrisalism: The amniotic tranquility of being indoors during a thunderstorm.
  11. Vemodalen: The frustration of photographing something amazing when thousands of identical photos already exist.
  12. Anecdoche: A conversation in which everyone is talking, but nobody is listening.
  13. Ellipsism: A sadness that you’ll never be able to know how history will turn out.
  14. Kuebiko: A state of exhaustion inspired by acts of senseless violence.
  15. Lachesism: The desire to be struck by disaster, like to survive a plane crash or lose everything in a fire.
  16. Exulansis: The tendency to give up trying to talk about an experience because people are unable to relate to it.
  17. Adronitis: Frustration with how long it takes to get to know someone.
  18. Ruckkehrunruhe: The feeling of returning home after an immersive trip only to find it fading rapidly from your awareness.
  19. Nodus Tollens: The realization that the plot of your life doesn’t make sense to you anymore.
  20. Onism: The frustration of being stuck in just one body that inhabits only one place at a time.
  21. Liberosis: The desire to care less about things.
  22. Altschmerz: Weariness with the same old issues that you’ve always had – the same boring flaws and anxieties that you’ve been gnawing on for years.
  23. Occhiolism: The awareness of the smallness of your perspective.
  24. Déja Vu: The feeling that you’ve been someplace before or that you are repeating an event.
  25. Fugue State: A psychological condition in which the individual moves about and speaks, but without conscious awareness.
  26. Mal de Coucou: Having an active social life but very few close friends.
  27. Ambedo: A melan cholic trance in which you become completely absorbed in vivid sensory details, like raindrops on a window or trees swaying in the wind.
  28. Nighthawk: A recurring thought that only seems to strike you late at night.
  29. Silience: The kind of unnoticed excellence that carious on around you every day, unremarkably, like the hidden talents of coworkers, the unseen portfolios of aspiring artists.
  30. Fitzcarraldo: An image that somehow becomes lodged deep in your brain, perhaps from a dream or book or conversation, which then grows into a wild impractical vision that scrambles back and forth in your head.
  31. Gnossienne: A moment of awareness that someone very close to you, that you’ve known for years, still has a private and mysterious inner life.
  32. Catoptric Tristesse: The sadness that you’ll never really know what other people think of you – good, bad, or at all.
  33. Mimeomia: The frustration of knowing how easily you fit into a stereotype, even if you never intended to, or if unfair, or if everyone else feels the same way.
  34. Semaphorism: A conversation hint that you have something personal to say on the subject but don’t go any further, like an emphatic nod, a half-told anecdote, or an enigmatic ‘I know the feeling”.
  35. Heartworm: A relationship or friendship that you can’t get out of your head, which you thought had faded long ago but is still somehow alive an unfinished.
  36. Xeno: The smallest possible measurable unit of human connection, typically exchanged between passing strangers.

Source:  The Dictionary of Obscure Sorrows

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The literal translation of every country’s name http://www.relativelyinteresting.com/the-literal-translation-of-every-countrys-name/ http://www.relativelyinteresting.com/the-literal-translation-of-every-countrys-name/#respond Fri, 16 Mar 2018 17:12:23 +0000 http://www.relativelyinteresting.com/?p=10349 What’s the origin of your country’s name? We’ve already revealed the literal translation of American states and Canadian provinces and how European countries got their name, but what about the literal translation for the names of all countries on the planet?  We’ve got that too. Here’s a few favorites: The Village:  Canada Red Dyewood:  Brazil […]

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What’s the origin of your country’s name?

We’ve already revealed the literal translation of American states and Canadian provinces and how European countries got their name, but what about the literal translation for the names of all countries on the planet?  We’ve got that too.

Here’s a few favorites:

  • The Village:  Canada
  • Red Dyewood:  Brazil
  • People Born Along the River:  Paraguay
  • Land of Flames:  Malawi
  • Land of the Burnt Faces:  Ethiopia
  • Land of Many Rabbits:  Spain
  • Home of Warriors:  Denmark
  • 10 Arrows:  Hungary
  • Land of the Wolves:  Georgia
  • The City:  Cambodia
  • Place Where One Stands:  Kazahkhstan
  • Frizzy-Haired Men:  Papua New Guinea

Click on the image to see a larger, more legible version of this beautifully designed map:

The literal translation of country names.
The literal translation of country names.

The literal translation of country names. Source: Credit Card Compare

Here’s each continent:

 

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How to recognize fake news http://www.relativelyinteresting.com/how-to-recognize-fake-news/ http://www.relativelyinteresting.com/how-to-recognize-fake-news/#respond Fri, 16 Mar 2018 15:34:51 +0000 http://www.relativelyinteresting.com/?p=10332 How to identify and protect yourself from fake news In today’s post-truth era, the concept of “fake news” has taken center stage.  Agenda disagrees with the facts?  It’s fake news.  Don’t like what the other networks are saying about you?  Also fake news.  Content creators have become increasingly successful at fooling people into believing half-truths […]

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How to identify and protect yourself from fake news

In today’s post-truth era, the concept of “fake news” has taken center stage.  Agenda disagrees with the facts?  It’s fake news.  Don’t like what the other networks are saying about you?  Also fake news.  Content creators have become increasingly successful at fooling people into believing half-truths and complete lies.  Worse yet, social media makes is incredibly easy and quick to share misinformation to large audiences.

Let’s look at the different types of fake news, their common traits, and then how to identify each so you protect yourself.

Types of fake news

10 types of fake news
10 types of fake news. Source: eavi (Media Literacy for Citizenship)

Propaganda

  • Adopted by governments, corporations and non-profits to manage attitudes, values, and knowledge
  • Appeals to emotions
  • Can be beneficial or harmful
Propaganda mural in North Korea
Propaganda mural in North Korea. Source: Andrew Todaro

Partisan

  • Ideological and includes interpretations of facts but may claim to be impartial
  • Privileges facts that conform to the narrative whilst forgoing others
  • Emotional and passionate language
Where do you read your news? Source: Vanessa Otero

Conspiracy Theory

  • Tries to explain simply complex realities as response to fear or uncertainty
  • Not falsifiable and evidence that refutes the conspiracy is regarded as further proof of the conspiracy
  • Rejects experts and authority
Conspiracy theories abound on Alex Jones’ Infowars.

Pseudoscience

  • Purveyors of greenwashing, miracle cures, anti-vaccination, and climate change denial
  • Misrepresents real scientific studies with exaggerated or false claims
  • Includes scientific-sounding words to sound believable
  • Often contradicts experts
A typical pseudoscientific product: magnets don’t work, copper doesn’t work, and Jesus doesn’t work.

Clickbait

  • Eye-catching, sensational headlines designed to distract
  • Often misleading and content may not reflect headline
  • Drives ad revenue

Examples of clickbait headlines

Sponsored Content

  • Advertising made to look like editorial
  • Potential conflict of interest for genuine news organizations
  • Consumers might not identify content as advertising if it is not clearly labelled

Satire and Hoax

  • Social commentary or humor (for example, The Onion)
  • Varies widely in quality and intended meaning may not be apparent
  • Can embarrass people who confuse the content as true

Error

  • Established news organizations sometimes make mistakes
  • Mistakes can hurt the brand, offend, or result in litigation
  • Reputable organizations acknowledge mistakes and publish apologies

Misinformation

  • Includes a mix of factual, false, or partly-false content
  • Intention can be to inform but author may not be aware the content is false
  • False attributions, doctored content, and misleading headlines

Bogus

  • Entirely fabricated content spread intentionally to disinform
  • Guerrilla marketing tactics; bots, comments, and counterfeit branding
  • Motivated by ad revenue, political influence, or both
Pizzagate was completely made up.

How do you protect yourself from fake news?

  1. Does the headline sound unrealistic?  Don’t believe everything you read.
  2. Check the URL.  Does it have any odd suffixes or substitutions designed to mislead viewers?
  3. Check the author’s credentials.  Skip anonymous news reports.
  4. Is it misleading?  Make sure the headline and/or picture matches the content.
  5. Consult and compare competing sources.  For example, what is Fox News saying VS CNN?
  6. Fact check stories with sites like Snopes, Politico, and Politifact.  Be aware of false attribution (attributing images, quotes, or video to the wrong source), doctored content (such as statistics, graphs, photos, and videos that have been modified, doctored, or taken out of context), and counterfeit content (ie: fake Twitter accounts posing to be legitimate sources).
  7. Dig deeper.  Follow up on cited sources and quotes.  Is the cited source reputable?
  8. Beware of online “filter bubbles” that show you only items that are similar to items you have liked.  This is especially important on social media sites like Facebook, which shows you content similar to the kinds you’ve previously engaged with.
  9. Be open-minded.  Ask questions.  Lots of questions.

 

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Writing’s power to deceive http://www.relativelyinteresting.com/writings-power-to-deceive/ http://www.relativelyinteresting.com/writings-power-to-deceive/#respond Fri, 09 Mar 2018 18:23:22 +0000 http://www.relativelyinteresting.com/?p=10135 Andrew Elfenbein, University of Minnesota When I was researching and writing my new book, “The Gist of Reading,” I wanted to explore long-held assumptions about reading and how we process what we read. Some of these assumptions have changed through time. For example, as novels became popular in the 18th century, many warned that they […]

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Andrew Elfenbein, University of Minnesota

When I was researching and writing my new book, “The Gist of Reading,” I wanted to explore long-held assumptions about reading and how we process what we read.

Some of these assumptions have changed through time. For example, as novels became popular in the 18th century, many warned that they were dangerous and had the potential to cultivate ignorance and immorality in readers, especially female ones.

Today, many would consider that view antiquated. People probably think that reading a narrative – fiction or otherwise – might be able to influence a reader’s opinions or personal beliefs. But their prior knowledge of real-world facts should be safe.

For example, readers might read a story in which a character mentions in passing that Hillary Clinton, rather than Donald Trump, won the 2016 election. This shouldn’t influence readers’ ability to quickly respond that Trump was the real winner, right?

And yet I came across a substantial amount of psychology work that has demonstrated how reading stories – both nonfiction and fiction – has a powerful ability to distort readers’ prior knowledge.

Did George Washington really become president?

In psychologist Richard Gerrig’s 1989 study “Suspense in the Absence of Uncertainty,” Gerrig developed short, nonfictional narratives about well-known events, such as the election of George Washington as president of the United States, that he gave to participants.

Some participants read a version of the narrative that foregrounded facts that made it doubtful Washington would become the president; others read a narrative that made his presidency seem likely.

Readers who read the doubtful version took longer to verify that he had indeed become president (or to recognize that a sentence denying that he had become president was not true).

Even though they knew Washington eventually became president, simply reading a very short narrative had enough power to make readers significantly less sure of what they already knew.

While Gerrig’s experiment presented readers with nonfictional stories about real events, another study demonstrated that reading a short fictional story containing falsehoods presented as facts can make readers more likely to treat them as facts, even if readers have previously shown that they know the truth.

In the study, participants took an online survey that quizzed them on their world knowledge – for example, identifying the world’s largest ocean (the Pacific) – and then had them rate how confident they were in their answer.

Two weeks later, the same participants read two fictional stories and were warned that these stories might contain some false information. The stories actually contained inaccurate versions of the very facts that the readers had been tested on two weeks earlier. For example, in one story, a character (incorrectly) mentioned, in passing, that the Indian Ocean was the world’s largest.

After reading the stories, the participants took the same world knowledge test they had taken two weeks earlier. The inaccurate information turned out to have a serious effect: Readers did worse on the world knowledge test after reading the stories than they had done two weeks before. In particular, questions they had gotten right two weeks earlier they now got wrong – even for the questions that they had answered most confidently on the earlier test.

And remember: All of this happened despite the fact that readers had been explicitly told that the stories would contain inaccurate information.

Pushing back against misinformation

Given our struggle to discern misinformation from fiction, psychologists have been interested in exploring how it to combat it. It seems especially vital to develop strategies that make people smarter about what they are gleaning from what they read, and to encourage ways to become more skeptical.

In a 2016 article, psychologist David N. Rapp outlines how to defeat, or at least reduce, the misinformation effect.

Rapp describes four key strategies that have proven especially effective.

First, when readers actively tag information as accurate or inaccurate while they read, inaccuracies lose much of their effect. It’s not enough to know that something you read is incorrect: Unless you actively tag it as wrong while reading it, you may suffer the misinformation effect.

Second, the further removed fiction is from everyday reality, the less vulnerable readers are to believe false facts that may be embedded in it. Rapp and his colleagues found that misinformation in fantasy stories had much less effect on readers’ knowledge than misinformation in more realistic stories. Rapp argues that this could mean readers are able to compartmentalize their response to fiction. Fantasy stories like “The Hobbit” probably have less of an ability to alter real-world knowledge than, say, a piece of historical fiction, like Philippa Gregory’s “The Other Boleyn Girl,” which is grounded in historical events but nonetheless riddled with historical inaccuracies.

Third, Rapp found that some inaccuracies are so flagrant that readers do notice them. They may be persuaded that St. Petersburg, rather than Moscow, is the capital of Russia. But it’s much harder to persuade them that Russia’s capital is Brasilia. Brasilia is just too different from anything that readers associate with Russia to make it a convincing capital.

Finally – and perhaps most importantly in today’s climate of “fake news” – readers may be sensitive to the authority of a source. False facts from a generally credible source seem to have more effect than false facts from a disreputable one. The challenge, of course, is that what counts as a credible source to one reader may count as the opposite to another reader.

I find all these psychological experiments telling precisely because they generally avoid having participants read about hot-button issues that may make them feel defensive or partisan.

The traditional suspicion of fiction arose from its ability to excite and engage. Yet the materials in these experiments are comparatively dry – and the fictional information was nonetheless able to cast a spell on the reader.

In other words, even without emotional appeals, by warping the most neutral of facts, readers can easily be persuaded to question or even reverse what they already know.

Such work underscores more than ever that suspicion of reading is not entirely ungrounded. Today, not only is the internet filled with dubious information but there are also deliberate attempts to spread misinformation via social media channels. In this era of “fake news,” scrutinizing the sources of our knowledge has become more critical than ever.

Andrew Elfenbein, Professor of English, University of Minnesota

This article was originally published on The Conversation. Read the original article.

 

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Learn the Most Valuable Trading Terminology in Modern Finance http://www.relativelyinteresting.com/learn-the-most-valuable-trading-terminology-in-modern-finance/ http://www.relativelyinteresting.com/learn-the-most-valuable-trading-terminology-in-modern-finance/#respond Fri, 09 Mar 2018 16:50:23 +0000 http://www.relativelyinteresting.com/?p=10321 Getting involved in trading is a tempting prospect but it can also be fairly daunting for newcomers to get to grips with. One of the first issues to learn about is the range of trading terminology that you might never have come across before. The following are a few of the most common phrases that […]

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Getting involved in trading is a tempting prospect but it can also be fairly daunting for newcomers to get to grips with. One of the first issues to learn about is the range of trading terminology that you might never have come across before. The following are a few of the most common phrases that you will want to be aware of.

Forex

One of the first decisions you will want to make is around whether you choose to trade stocks, forex or some other investment vehicle. Forex is all about trying to make money based on the fluctuations of the foreign exchange currency market. The value of one currency compared to another changes constantly, and forex traders look to take advantage of this.

In this way, it is possible to invest in the possibility of one currency rising or falling against another. There is no need to actually buy the different currencies involved, though. Before starting, it is important to understand markets around the world, using the likes of this forex calendar UK investors can use to gain a global perspective. A forex calendar simply lists the most important economic events by date. Seeing how they are very likely to influence forex prices, traders look at those dates as opportunities to make a profit.

Market Capitalization

The market capitalization of a company lets us see how much it is worth overall. It is a good indication of the size of a business. In 2017, the top companies in this respect were Apple, Alphabet, Microsoft and Amazon. Apple holds the current record market capitalization, having reached over $924 billion at the start of 2018.

The market capitalisation of a business is calculated very simply. It is the number of shares issued multiplied by the current market price of the shares. The different stock exchanges dotted around the planet can also be classified by the total amount of value relating to the companies traded there. On this basis, the New York Stock Exchange is the world leader, at $21,377 billion.

IPOs and ICOs

An IPO is an initial public offering. This is carried out when a company is first floated on the stock market. Investors can choose to take a chance on paying the initial price, which may increase or decrease once trading starts. There have been a number of spectacular IPO successes over the years, such as Twitter and LinkedIn, as well as more than a few flops too.

ICOs are a modern variant on this type of offer. These are initial coin offerings and they give you the chance to get involved with a new cryptocurrency. There are many projects of this type lined up for 2018. Among the most eagerly anticipated ICOs are those for Telegram, the Restart Energy global energy platform and Moozicore. 

Over the Counter

Commonly abbreviated to OTC, this refers to investing using a decentralised market rather than an exchange market. What this means is that the two parties deal with each other directly rather than working with an exchange as an intermediary. This produces the possibility of less standardisation and more flexibility when trading.

The rise of internet trading means that more people than ever before can buy and sell stocks, currencies or other investment products in this way. We can see the growing popularity of this approach in the fact that OTC trading in the US rose from 16% of all stock trades in 2008 to around 40% by 2014.

 

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Which Dungeons and Dragons character should you play? http://www.relativelyinteresting.com/dungeons-dragons-character-play/ http://www.relativelyinteresting.com/dungeons-dragons-character-play/#respond Fri, 02 Mar 2018 19:00:46 +0000 http://www.relativelyinteresting.com/?p=10256 It’s Friday night, and your parents are gone for the weekend.  You’ve go the house to yourself.  You know what to do:  get a party started. At the very least, you’ll need a melee class (perhaps the traditional fighter – someone who can tank); a healer (obviously); and a mage (preferably with some ranged casting […]

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It’s Friday night, and your parents are gone for the weekend.  You’ve go the house to yourself.  You know what to do:  get a party started.

At the very least, you’ll need a melee class (perhaps the traditional fighter – someone who can tank); a healer (obviously); and a mage (preferably with some ranged casting abilities).  Get your game on:  it’s D&D time.

But what Dungeons and Dragons fifth edition character should you play?  How will you increase the probability that you’ll defeat the demogorgon?  Thankfully, the decision is easy, mighty adventurer.

Roll for initiative, then use this flowchart, created by LucidChart, and choose your destiny.

Which Dungeons and Dragons character class should you play?

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What’s in a Name? The Stories Behind Three Popular Dish Names http://www.relativelyinteresting.com/whats-name-stories-behind-three-popular-dish-names/ http://www.relativelyinteresting.com/whats-name-stories-behind-three-popular-dish-names/#respond Fri, 02 Mar 2018 18:31:26 +0000 http://www.relativelyinteresting.com/?p=10309 When you order an apple pie, you know what you’re going to get:  there’s going to be a pie, and there’s going to be some apple in that pie. However, some food names bear absolutely no relation to what they actually consist of, while others have a link to the “look” or even the sound […]

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When you order an apple pie, you know what you’re going to get:  there’s going to be a pie, and there’s going to be some apple in that pie.

However, some food names bear absolutely no relation to what they actually consist of, while others have a link to the “look” or even the sound a food makes.

There are many examples of interestingly named foods, but to illustrate, we’ve rounded up three dishes and explained the reason – logical or otherwise – behind their names.

‘Bubble and Squeak’

Source: Philip Witty via Facebook

This one is a name that makes sense once you cook it. Bubble and squeak is a dish that’s designed to clear out all the leftovers following a Sunday roast, so by tradition it was often eaten as a Monday night supper. To make it, you chop up all the leftover veg, potatoes and slices of meat, mix them together and fry until the edges get all crispy and golden. As it cooks away, you’ll hear bubbling and squeaking coming from the pan as the fat hisses. Need we explain more about how this dish’s name came about?

‘Chicken Tikka Masala’

When you’re scanning through an Indian restaurant menu and wondering what curry to order, does it ever make you wonder where the names for the wide variety of different curries out there come from? For instance, what’s behind the name of a dish like chicken tikka masala?

The origins of the chicken tikka masala are disputed. Some claim it’s the invention of Ali Ahmed Aslam, a Pakistani chef working in Glasgow in the 1960s. Others say that the dish had been alive and kicking decades earlier in Punjab.

“Chicken Tikka Masala” (CC BY-SA 2.0) by Kelly Sue

Breaking down the name, “tikka” means pieces or bits of meat in Hindu and Urdu, and chicken tikka is cooked traditionally in India and Pakistan on skewers on a brazier. Before being cooked, the meat is marinated in yoghurt and spices. However, the chicken tikka masala that’s cooked in most restaurants around the world today is prepared in a different way.

It’s still marinated, but then the chunks of meat are baked in a tandoor oven and served in a “masala” – which means in a spice mixture. Often there is tomato, cream, and/or coconut cream in the sauce.

Whatever its origins, the chicken tikka masala is one of the most popular curry dishes around, and for a while in the noughties, it held the top spot as the British people’s favourite dish.

‘Welsh Rarebit’

To the uninitiated, Welsh Rarebit may be a little off-putting on a menu; especially if you’re fond of the little fluffy bunnies you sometimes see lolloping through the countryside. But fear not, and check the spelling once more (it’s “rarebit”, not “rabbit”, we promise).

If you order Welsh Rarebit, you’ll basically be eating a glorified version of cheese on toast. And it’s so easy, anyone can make it.

Source: wales.com via Facebook

A cheese sauce is made with cheese, milk and flavourings such as mustard or Worcester sauce, then spread over toasted bread. There are plenty of variations – such as putting a poached egg on the top. Its name came about as a bit of a self-deprecatory joke; the Welsh couldn’t afford meat, so made a substitute dish and called it Welsh rarebit!

Next time you sit down to eat something, take a moment and see if what it’s called makes sense to you – or maybe you’ll have to google it and find out where the name comes from!

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