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In 1979, Namco released Pac-Man, the most popular arcade game of all time. Over 300,000 units were sold worldwide. More than 100,000 units are sold in the United States alone. Originally named Puck Man, the game was retitled after executives saw the potential for vandals to scratch out part of the letter P on the game's marquee, which might discourage parents from letting their children play. Pac-Man became the first video game to be popular with both males and females.
Elizabeth Goose, who lived in Massachusetts in the late 1600's, is credited by some with the nursery rhymes read to us as children. However, most of those rhymes existed before her time in the form of satirical poems and drinking songs. Some were based on actual events or characters. Charles Perrault, a Frenchman, published a collection of these rhymes in 1697 and an illustration accompanying the text showed an old woman telling stories, with the words "Mother Goose" appearing behind her. The book was eventually published in England and the United States and more rhymes were added with each new publication. It wasn't until the 1800's that a relative of Mrs. Goose claimed the stories originated with Elizabeth.
If you were born in Los Alamos, New Mexico during the Manhattan project (where they made the atomic bomb), your birth place is listed as a post office box in Albuquerque.
The St. Louis Gateway Arch had a projected death toll while it was being built. No one died.
The Hoover Dam was built to last 2,000 years. The concrete in it will not even be fully cured for another 500 years.
The "Calabash" pipe, most often associated with Sherlock Holmes, was not used by him until William Gillette (an American) portrayed Holmes on stage. Gillette needed a pipe he could keep in his mouth while he spoke his lines.
The Chinese national anthem is called "the march of volunteers."
"The Tale of Genji", a Japanese work from the early eleventh century, is considered by many scholars to be the world's first full novel. The novel was written by a woman: Murasaki Shikibu, or Lady Murasaki.
The reason wheels seem to spin backwards on a camera is because when you film something, you are really taking a series of still images and then replaying them so fast that the eye is fooled into thinking it is a continuous stream of images. The eye can see about 12-14 frames per second. Because of a physical law called the Nyquist Sampling Theorem you need to display frames twice as fast as the eye can see to fool it into seeing it as a continuous movie (Nyquist showed mathematically why that is true). So, imagine you have a wheel that is spinning exactly once every second. If you took a picture at the same rate, it would look like it is standing still. That's because it rotates exactly once every time you take a picture. Now take a picture just a little bit faster than 1 per second. Now every time you take a picture, the wheel has not quite made it all the way around; maybe it will have gone 350 degrees around, so it's 10 degrees behind the first frame. The next frame it will have gone another 350 degrees, making it now 20 degrees behind the first frame, and so on. When you play the film back, it will look like the wheel is moving backwards, even though you know it was going forwards. The opposite effect happens when you take pictures a bit slower than the rotation rate. It gets more complicated when the wheel does not rotate at a constant rate, like when a car accelerates. The next time you watch TV or go to the movies, watch the wheels as a car speeds up. You might see the wheel appear to go backwards, them stop, then go forwards, all while the car is moving forwards.
The glue on Israeli postage stamps is certified kosher.
If you have three quarters, four dimes, and four pennies, you have $1.19. You also have the largest amount of money in coins without being able to make change for a dollar.
In the UPC, the lines—the Universal Product Code—hold 11 numbers, each of which is a code that describes the product. The size, weight, and manufacturer or distributor, for example, are each represented by a number. The numbers are in the form that computers can read, 0's (black lines) and 1's (white lines).
The San Francisco Cable cars are the only mobile National Monuments.
Eskimos never gamble.
20252 is Smokey the Bear's own zip code.
203 million dollars is spent on barbed wire each year in the U.S.
The external tank on the space shuttle is not painted.
If you had enough water to fill one million goldfish bowls, you could fill an entire stadium.
Zip code 12345 is assigned to General Electric in Schenectady, NY.
Success magazine recently declared bankruptcy.
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