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Casually Explained: YouTube

Casually Explained: YouTube

(PG-13: Language) If you can believe it, YouTube has only been around since 2005. Lots of things have changed with the service since then, and Casually Explained is here to casually explain the history of Google’s video juggernaut, and what its changes have meant for creators.

How Could You Walk Through Walls?

How Could You Walk Through Walls?

Life Noggin explores another one of life’s imponderables – what would have to happen for it to be possible for humans to move through solid objects? Even though there’s lots of empty space between the atoms everything is made of, it’s highly unlikely.

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Adam Ruins Gladiators

Adam Ruins Gladiators

In this clip from Adam Ruins Everything‘s episode An Ancient History of Violence, the show points out that gladiators were actually treated and governed much like today’s combat athletes. Still, a small percentage of them did meet their end in the arena.

Extracting Gold from Dirt

Extracting Gold from Dirt

How to Make Everything is making a series of videos about currency. For his first video, he briefly talks about the history of money, then at 4:40 he goes out with a gold panning enthusiast to try his hand at extracting gold in the simplest way possible.

Why Traveling to the Past is Impossible

Why Traveling to the Past is Impossible

Real Life Lore simplifies the reasons why time travel to the past is impossible, or rather philosophically unsound. Traveling to the past most likely means destroying your own present, which is either impossible or makes your journey impossible in the first place.

The History & Future of Everything v2.0

The History & Future of Everything v2.0

Kurzgesagt dusts off their 2013 video The History & Future of Everything and gives it a shiny coat of paint, with updated animations, and references to events of the last 5 years. Every time we hear about the Middle Ages, we feel much better about today’s problems.

How to Make an Emoji

How to Make an Emoji

Ever wondered who’s in charge of deciding what emojis make their way onto your phone, and which ones work across all devices? Half as Interesting introduces us to emoji expert Jeremy Burge, the vice-chair of the Unicode Emoji subcommittee. Yep, that’s a thing.

Why Climb the Highest Mountain?

Why Climb the Highest Mountain?

After Skool reminds us how world leaders can and should inspire humanity, taking President John F. Kennedy’s impressive and memorable 1962 speech about science, discovery, and enlightenment, and illustrating some of its many highlights.

The Hungriest Man in History

The Hungriest Man in History

(PG-13: Language) Think you’re hungry? Sam O’Nella Academy introduces us to Tarrare, an 18th century Frenchman known for his never-ending hunger and uncanny ability to eat inhuman amounts of food. ‘Twas no man. ‘Twas a remorseless eatin’ machine!

The Xerox Thieves: Jobs & Gates

The Xerox Thieves: Jobs & Gates

Business Casual simplifies one of the most infamous tales in Silicon Valley. In the early ’70s, Xerox came up with a user-friendly way to interact with computers. But now Apple and Microsoft are the kings of PCs. Did Steve Jobs and Bill Gates really steal their idea?

Mousetrap Car Physics

Mousetrap Car Physics

Engineer Mark Rober and teacher Al “Doc Fizzix” Balmer explain the physics of these primitive race cars that get their power solely from the energy stored in a mousetrap’s spring. Along the way, you’ll learn about the principles of mechanical advantage, levers, and wheels.

How Dark Patterns Trick You

How Dark Patterns Trick You

Nerdwriter reminds us to be vigilant and read text before clicking links when we’re browsing online or playing games. He points us to “dark” patterns – bad user experiences that are designed to manipulate an outcome. For more, there’s a helpful awareness website.

If Kirby Existed in The Real World

If Kirby Existed in The Real World

Nintendo’s puffy pink ball of goo is so fun to play with because of all the crazy things his (or her?) body can do. But what would a creature like Kirby be like if it actually existed? Play Noggin answers another question that nobody was asking.

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Microwaving Steel Wool

Microwaving Steel Wool

This super-fine steel wool reminds us of Donald Trump’s hair. But these skinny metal strands are most interesting when they have their electrons excited by a microwave oven. Steve Mould explains why it behaves so spectactularly. The 9-volt battery trick is pretty neat too.

Facts About Shopping Malls

Facts About Shopping Malls

For their latest episode of Scatterbrained, Mental Floss offers up a number of interesting tidbits about shopping centers, which were once the epicenter of American shopping but have dramatically changed in the years since the advent of big box and online commerce.

How All You Can Eat Restaurants Work

How All You Can Eat Restaurants Work

All you can eat restaurants seem like a losing proposition. Business Insider spoke with an analyst to find out what tricks establishments use to squeeze profits out of buffet-style menus, and how other restaurants fought back.

The Philosophy of Deus Ex

The Philosophy of Deus Ex

(SPOILERS) Wisecrack takes on two of the main themes explored across the Deus Ex games. One is how paranoia can and is used to manipulate society. The other is the danger of developing technology before understanding its moral implications.

Egoistic Altruism Explained

Egoistic Altruism Explained

Kurzgesagt explains an economic idea called egoistic altriusm. It argues that it’s in an individual’s best interest for those around him to be well off. You’ll have more people capable of solving your problems, and more people able to afford the solutions you offer.

A Few Facts About Language

A Few Facts About Language

Mental Floss explores a bunch of tidbits and trivia about language, including some of the many quirks of English, how dictionaries work, and a serious polyglot – a man who claims to speak over fifty languages. That “whether” or “if” thing always trips us up.

How Accurate are Medical Scenes?

How Accurate are Medical Scenes?

Wired enlisted the help of a general surgery student to look at emergency room and operating room scenes in movies and TV shows. She points out what’s generally portrayed accurately, what would never work in real life, and which terms actually mean something.

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A Dictionary for Your Twenties

A Dictionary for Your Twenties

(PG-13: Language) The Awesomer’s writing team has long since said farewell to their twenties, but we definitely could have used some of the words from exurb1a’s reference guide, which includes terms which could come in handy to describe the trauma of that youthful decade.

The History of Nutella

The History of Nutella

Business Casual shares the origin of the hazelnut spread and its most famous incarnation – Nutella. Like many inventions, the spread came out of necessity. Trade embargoes during the great wars led to a shortage in cocoa. Enter the hazelnut.

Why Planes Crash

Why Planes Crash

Real Engineering usually teaches about how things work. But here, they explain some of the bad things that can cause complex systems like airplanes to fail and plunge from the sky. Despite the gloomy premise, the truth is that flying is safer than it’s ever been.

If You Only Drank Coffee

If You Only Drank Coffee

We know quite a few people who are serious caffeine addicts. But when push comes to shove, could you subsist entirely on coffee? Of course not. Life Noggin ponders what sort of nasty things might happen to us if that was all we ever consumed.

Learning to Rip a Phone Book in Half

Learning to Rip a Phone Book in Half

For his latest challenge, Mike Boyd took tips – and materials – from fellow serial learner 52 Skillz. The secret to ripping a phone book in half is to rest it against your hips while you hold the book in a certain way. He also shares how you can do the same to small books.

The Case for Museums

The Case for Museums

While we love the idea of therapeutic museums, The Art Assignment makes a compelling argument to visit these art houses as they are today. They hope that we can look not just for beauty or novelty, but also the artifacts’ ever changing context to society and to ourselves.

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