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How Much Profit?

How Much Profit?

BuzzFeed Blue presents estimates of the profits per item of some of the most popular products in the US, reminding us once again that the Apple tax is real. Sources in the videos’ description.

Now I Know More

Now I Know More

Trivia maven Dan Lewis has a new paperback collection. Now I Know More: The Revealing Stories Behind Even More of the World’s Most Interesting Facts contains 101 interesting stories in Dan’s trademark engaging prose.

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LWT: The Lottery

LWT: The Lottery

(NSFW: Language) Last Week Tonight looks at lottery policies in the U.S. Its addictive nature aside, even if everyone gambled only occasionally the lottery would still be a scam because its proceeds are not allocated properly.

South Park: Freemium Games

South Park: Freemium Games

(NSFW: Language) If you download games on your mobile device, you’ve probably come across a bad freemium game. South Park accurately breaks down the concept behind these money-sucking portals in its episode Freemium Isn’t Free.

The Language of Lying

The Language of Lying

TED Educator Noah Zandan explores deception, and some of the signals and linguistic patterns which can help you sniff out when someone isn’t telling the truth. Or if you’re trying to improve your lying skills, you’ll learn what not to say.

Feather vs. Bowling Ball Drop

Feather vs. Bowling Ball Drop

In this fascinating clip from BBC Two series Human Universe, they demonstrate how a bowling ball and feather fall at exactly the same speed when air has been almost completely removed from a giant vacuum chamber.

LWT: US State Legislature

LWT: US State Legislature

(NSFW: Language) Last Week Tonight look at the circuses known as US state legislatures. Operating under obscurity, lack of oversight and corporate spoon feeding, many state lawmakers are wreaking havoc on their constituents.

Snowpiercer: Left or Right

Snowpiercer: Left or Right

(Spoilers) For Tony Zhou’s latest episode of Every Frame a Painting, he explores a simple, yet effective use of screen direction to help indicate the choices of its characters. If you’ve never seen Snowpiercer, go watch it, then come back.

26 Facts About Halloween

26 Facts About Halloween

Mental Floss runs down a bunch of not-so-scary tidbits we’re pretty sure you didn’t know about Halloween. We’re just glad we no longer have to carve gourd, turnip and beet jack-o-lanterns. Also, John Green needs a serious costume makeover.

Why Spiders Don’t Stick to Webs

Why Spiders Don’t Stick to Webs

Craig “Wheezy Waiter” Benzine of Mental Floss explores another question that you’ve probably wondered about at some point : Why is it that spiders don’t get caught in their own webs, when everything else seems to stick to them?

LWT: Sugar

LWT: Sugar

(NSFW: Language) Before you go trick or treating, remember to take it easy on the human race’s favorite drug. Sadly, like other lucrative industries, bribery and misinformation will ensure that sugar pushers stay open for business.

How to Make a Taser

How to Make a Taser

“It’s a strange pain. It’s as if something’s stabbing your finger, but the blade – it doesn’t stop there.” The smart but forgetful engineer Mehdi Sadaghdar takes us through the steps and missteps of creating an electroshock weapon.

PhotoMath

PhotoMath

An app that instantly solves math equations using your phone’s camera, then shows you the step by step solution. It can solve simple arithmetic and algebra equations. Available for iOS and Windows Phone; Android version drops in 2015.

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What if We Lived on the Moon?

What if We Lived on the Moon?

Vsauce3 reminds us how awesome our planet is. Even our next door neighbor is so different and hostile. The moon has longer days and nights, wildly varying temperatures, no atmosphere and lots of radiation.

Terrence Malick: Voice-over Artist

Terrence Malick: Voice-over Artist

Terrence Malick often uses voice-overs in his movies, but it’s no mere idiosyncrasy. Scott Tobias and Kevin B. Lee show how Malick employs the technique to free his camera, emphasize his themes or help the audience catch up.

LWT: Translators

LWT: Translators

(NSFW: Language) Last Week Tonight looks at the unnecessarily long immigration process of Iraqi and Afghan translators who worked with US military forces, despite them having risked their and their family’s lives for Americans.

Are Games About Mechanics?

Are Games About Mechanics?

Idea Channel and Extra Credits talk about the dissonance between story (and characterization) and interaction in some video games, e.g. in cutscenes Nathan Drake is a witty everyman, but when you control him he’s a mass murderer.

Silence of the Lambs: Who Wins?

Silence of the Lambs: Who Wins?

Film critic Tony Zhou imparts a wealth of knowledge in this quick episode of Every Frame a Painting, as he points out how director Jonathan Demme differentiated the dominator from the dominated in The Silence of the Lambs.

How Maggots Turn to Flies

How Maggots Turn to Flies

(Gross) This clip from Ammonite Films’ CBBC wildlife mini series Smalltalk Diaries follows a fly larva as it undergoes metamorphosis. If the wisecracking narration ruins it for you, there’s a silent version here.

Why Are We Morbidly Curious?

Why Are We Morbidly Curious?

Michael from Vsauce explores the dark side of human nature in this episode which looks at the psychological reasons that we’re drawn to everything from car wrecks and fights to fail videos to shows like Hannibal.

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Armored Combat in the 15th C.

Armored Combat in the 15th C.

Le Figaro and Musée de Cluny give us a basic idea of what it was like to fight in full combat armor based on 15th century documents. Dark Souls it ain’t. We bet many battles were shut down because the neighbors complained.

And the Other Way is Wrong

And the Other Way is Wrong

For his latest exploration of the world’s greatest filmmakers, Tony Zhou takes a look at the precise visual style of David Fincher, the man behind such diverse and amazing films as Fight Club, Seven, Benjamin Button and The Social Network.

Do I Really Sound Like That?

Do I Really Sound Like That?

SciShow explains why your recorded voice sounds different from what you hear. Part of your voice is conducted through your head on its way to your ears, making it sound deeper and more resonant to yourself.

BBC: Giant Red Leech

BBC: Giant Red Leech

(Gross) The upcoming BBC documentary Wonders of the Monsoon features a rare – and unsettling – footage of a 19.6″-long Giant Red Leech devouring an even larger earthworm. Both animals are endemic to Borneo. More here.

LWT: Drones

LWT: Drones

(NSFW: Language) Last Week Tonight talks about the United States’ use of armed drones. The practice is shrouded in what appear to be unsettling and vague guidelines where targets are presumed guilty.

History of Emoticons

History of Emoticons

You might have assumed that the use of characters to create faces was a fairly recent development, but it turns out that printed smiley- and winky-faces have been around for hundreds of years. Unless they were a typo, that is.

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