That's Interesting

  • Taxicab Geometry as a Vehicle for the Journey Toward Enlightenment

    In casual conversation, many (perhaps most) individuals are impatient with what they regard as slight distinctions of meaning. This impatience with fine-grained semantic sensitivity is reflected in the popularity of such pejorative expressions as “splitting hairs” and “just semantics.” The reigning attitude is that individuals who pay attention to apparently small differences in the definitions of words are pedantic and tedious. But slight differences in meaning can be surprisingly meaningful.

    Read More
  • Can Western universities survive without China?

    Some universities fear they have become too financially dependent on fee-paying Chinese students – and thanks to Covid-19, many of them are staying away this year. Salvatore Babones, an associate professor at the University of Sydney, says Australia is particularly vulnerable to this, while Vivienne Stern of Universities UK says it’s just one of a number of serious concerns for UK and US universities.

    Read More
  • The Strange Costumes of the Plague Doctors Who Treated 17th Century Victims of the Bubonic Plague

    In the 17th and 18th centuries,with the bubonic plague sweeping Europe, plague doctors wandered towns and countryside in a “fanciful-looking costume [that] typically consisted of a head-to-toe leather or wax-canvas garment,” writes the Public Domain Review, “large crystal glasses; and a long snout or bird beak, containing aromatic spices (such as camphor, mint, cloves, and myrrh), dried flowers (such as roses or carnations), or a vinegar sponge.”

    Read More
  • The Symmetry and Chaos of the World’s Megacities

    Architectural photographer Ryan Koopmans spent the past decade shooting hi-res photographs of the world’s biggest cities. The results are mind-blowing.

    Read More
  • An Illustrated Guide to Mean Things People Say About National Parks

    Artist Amber Share trawls disgruntled reviews on such platforms as Yelp, TripAdvisor, Google, and Facebook to mine for complaints about National Parks in USA.

    Read More
  • The village that undergoes a mass exodus every autumn – Arslanbob

    “Every year during the autumn months, a village in Kyrgyzstan undergoes a mass exodus. Around 3,000 families move into the forest for over two months to undertake the world’s most unique harvest.”

    Read More
  • Life on China’s low-speed trains

    An interesting photo gallery of what life is like on China’s slow trains.

    Read More
  • A Map of How the Word “Tea” Spread Across the World

    A look at the spread of the word for “tea” around the globe.

    Read More
  • Carting Lane Sewer Lamp

    “By the end of the 19th century, London was trying to shed its reputation as a stinky cesspool.”

    “Patented by British engineer Joseph Edmund Webb in the 1890s, the so-called “sewer gas destructor lamps” were designed to extract gases from the pipes and burn them off at high heat.”

    Read More
  • The Atlantic: To Survive in a Wetter World, Raise Ducks, Not Chickens

    “Farmers in Bangladesh are adapting to climate change, and it’s having an impact in faraway places—including on restaurant menus.”

    Read More
  • Select Topics

Show All