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  • Is There a U.S. City That Has an Incomplete Subway System beneath Its Streets?

    The Ohio city of Cincinnati almost had a rapid-transit system. In fact, roughly two miles (3.2 km) of subway tunnels still lie under Central Parkway on the edge of the city’s downtown, surprisingly well-preserved after almost 100 years of neglect. The plan for a 16-mile (26 km) loop was originally estimated to cost $12 million USD, and $6 million USD in bond money was spent to secure rights of way and build tunnels, stations, and bridges. However, by the late 1920s, the city’s will to finish the project waned -- blamed on escalating costs, inflation, the collapse of funding, political bickering, and the onset of the Great Depression.

    A tunnel leading to nowhere:

    As of August 2016, the abandoned tunnel was being used to house a relocated water main and some fiber optic cables.

      • In 2008, it was estimated that it would cost $2.6 million USD per year to continue maintaining the tunnels, $19 million USD to fill the tunnels with dirt, and $100.5 million USD to revive the tunnels for modern subway use. Relocating the 52-inch (132 cm) water main would cost $14 million USD.
    • “We’ve had people approach us about using the tunnel for everything from grain malting to a water bottling operation, to nightclubs,” said Michael Moore, director of transportation and engineering for the city, in 2016.
  • What Is the Fastest Sense in Humans?

    Which is a human’s fastest-reacting sense? Scientists rating the speed associated with the brain’s recognition of sight, sound, taste, smell and the sense of touch have found that hearing is No. 1. Forget about the speed of light vs. the speed of sound; the only thing that matters is how long it takes for information to reach the brain, and some parts of the ear -- such as the stapes reflex, which protects against loud noises -- engage within .025 seconds. That’s 10 times faster than the .2 seconds it takes for the brain to understand the light that reaches the eye, or the .2 seconds it takes for the brain to acknowledge a touch.

    Converting sound to impulses:

      • We hear when sound waves are funneled down the external ear canal and strike your eardrum, causing it to vibrate. The vibrations are passed to the three small bones of the middle ear, which transmit them to the cochlea.
      • The cochlea contains tubes filled with fluid. Inside one of the tubes, tiny hair cells pick up the vibrations and convert them into nerve impulses that are delivered to the brain via the auditory nerve.
    • A cochlear implant helps people with hearing loss. They convert sound signals into electrical pulses that stimulate the hearing nerve and go straight to the brain. A MED-EL cochlear implant sends pulses at speeds up to 50,704 times per second.

    Beyond the five sense organs. In addition to sight,smell, taste, touch, and hearing, humans also have awareness of balance (equilibrioception), pressure, temperature (thermoception), pain (nociception), and motion all of which may involve the coordinated use of multiple sensory organs.

  • Do Many Americans Want to Move to Canada Because of Politics?

    Donald Trump’s unexpected victory in the 2016 U.S. presidential election

    Americans Want to Move to Canada Americans Want to Move to Canada

    was a shock to many, but it was particularly jolting for Canada’s immigration website. As the states of Wisconsin, Michigan, and Pennsylvania -- usually Democratic strongholds -- fell into Trump’s Electoral College column around 11 p.m. EDT on 8 November, some 100,000 Americans were trying to access the Immigration, Refugees and Citizenship Canada website, causing it to crash.

    The usual proportion of U.S. visitors on the site ranges from 8.8 to 11.6 percent, officials said. However, on election night, U.S. web users -- theoretically, people fearful of a Trump presidency and contemplating a new life in Canada -- amounted to half of the increased traffic when the site “started to experience difficulties.”

    Want to call Canada home, eh?

      • It's estimated that 200,000 users visited the website on that historic night, compared to 17,000 users at the same time the previous week.
      • There are three basic ways to move to Canada. You must have a special skill or profession, you have to be joining immediate family in Canada, or you must be seeking political asylum.
    • The immigration process is slow and expensive. Even a simple application to join a spouse in Canada can cost as much as $15,000 USD, and the waiting period can last months or even years.
  • Are Disney Theme Parks Still Popular?

    images-4When you think of The Walt Disney Company, you might think first of its lineup of blockbuster movies, from Frozen and Toy Story to The Lion King and Finding Nemo. But the studio entertainment division of the venerable company only brings in about 15 percent of Disney’s gross annual revenue. Perhaps surprisingly, its theme parks and resorts division rakes in twice as much revenue, based on 2014 figures. And in terms of visitor attendance, Disney operates eight of the world's top 10 theme parks.

    A media empire that began in 1955:

      • Disney's annual revenue from its theme parks is about six times higher than that of its closest competitor -- Comcast’s Universal Studios theme parks.
      • The largest revenue segment for Disney is its network and cable operations, which includes the Disney Channel and ESPN. Half of the company’s total revenue comes from television.
    • Legendary animator Walt Disney invented modern-day theme parks with the opening of his first Disneyland park in California in 1955.
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  • Why Are Slanted Windows Popular in Vermont?

    About 140 years after a wave of murderous hysteria spread through colonial Massachusetts, culminating in the Salem witch trials of 1692, witchesdownload-1 were apparently still a concern in nearby Vermont. That’s why you’ll find many Vermont homes from the 1830s with odd-looking windows on the second floor, installed at a 45-degree angle to match the roofline. According to superstition, witches can’t fly in through an angled window -- their broomsticks won’t fit -- so some Vermont homeowners added a so-called "witch window" as an extra precaution towards keeping them out.

    Also known as "coffin windows" in Vermont folklore, these off-kilter windows might also have been added so that 19th-century undertakers could remove coffins more easily, rather than navigating down the narrow, winding staircases of the day.

    Which window is witch?

      • Witch windows are most common in the central and northern parts of Vermont.


      • Depending on who you ask, these quirky windows are also called Vermont windows, sideways windows, or lazy windows.


    • Some say these windows were originally designed to function as vents, giving rising hot air a place to escape during the summer. But the average summer temperature in Vermont is just 67.8 degrees Fahrenheit (19.9 degrees Celsius), so maybe not.
  • What Was Unusual about Harry Houdini’s Death?

    You could lock him in an iron chest and toss it into New York’s East River. You could hang him upside down in a tank of water, shackled. Or you could bury him in a hole six feet (1.8 m) deep. But you couldn’t outwit Harry Houdini, the most celebrated magician and escape artist of the 20th century. However, mortality finally caught up with Houdini in 1926, in an unexpected turn of events. During an informal talk with students in Montreal, he boasted about his rock-hard stomach, inviting a student to take his best shot. One of the punches ruptured Houdini's appendix and 12 days later, on 31 October 1926, he died. For the next decade, Houdini's wife, Bess, held yearly séances on Halloween, fulfilling an agreement that she and Harry had made before his death to try to contact each other from the afterlife.

    An escape to the spirit world:

      • In 1936, after an unsuccessful séance on the roof of the Knickerbocker Hotel in Los Angeles, Bess extinguished a candle that had burned next to Houdini's photograph since his death.
      • Bess claimed to have been contacted during a séance in 1929, but later admitted the whole thing had been faked.
    • The tradition of holding an annual Halloween séance for Houdini has been continued by magicians around the world.http://www.dlrglobalventures.com/media/catalog/product/cache/1/small_image/175x/9df78eab33525d08d6e5fb8d27136e95/h/p/hp-slaw_a.jpg
  • How Can Someone Walk on Hot Coals and Not Get Burned?

    Firewalking has been practiced by cultures all over the world, with the earliest known reference dating back to 1,200 B.C. in India. It always looks impressive, a mind-over-matter feat often used to test an individual’s courage or faith. But walking barefoot over a bed of blazing embers without getting third-degree burns is actually relatively simple -- although don't try it at home. Science tells us that your feet aren’t in contact with the coals long enough to do any harm. Furthermore, coals are typically poor conductors of heat, especially as they burn down.

    A lot of firewalking is done at night. The hot coals still look ominous, but there’s usually plenty of ash spread on top. If you keep moving, the risk of burned feet decreases.

    Walk, don't run, on the coals:

      • You’re more likely to get burned if you run through the embers. Running pushes your feet deeper into the coals, and they might get singed.


      • The practice is often used today as a team building practice. The shared accomplishment gives members of the group a feeling of togetherness and achievement.


    • Some tribes in Pakistan use firewalking as a decider of guilt or innocence. If the accused walks on hot coals and is unharmed, he’s deemed innocent. Otherwise, he's guilty as charged.
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  • Is Table Tennis a Good Spectator Sport?


    In an attempt to make table tennis more enjoyable for television audiences, the International Table Tennis Federation took action after the 2000 Summer Olympic Games in Sydney, Australia. To make the ball easier to see during the frenetic action, the diameter of a regulation table tennis ball was officially changed from 1.5 inches (38 mm) to 1.57 inches (40 mm). The sport's governing body also hoped that the larger ball would increase air resistance and slow down the game slightly, making it easier for TV viewers to follow the fast-paced action. The decision to increase the ball's diameter was also prompted by players increasing the sponge layer on their paddles, which helped them put more zip on the ball.

    Follow the bouncing ball:

      • Table tennis was invented in England in the late 19th century and was introduced as an Olympic sport in 1988.
      • The decision to increase the size of the table tennis ball was the first official change to the game since 1937.
    • World-class players can put up to 9,000 rpm of spin on table tennis balls. Theoretically, larger balls should have less spin.
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  • What Was Unique about the Discovery of Helium?

    Helium is the only element that was discovered in space

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    before it was found on Earth.

    English astronomer Norman Lockyer and French astronomer Pierre Jules César Janssen were independently studying a total solar eclipse in 1868 when they both noticed a curious yellow emission in the sun’s spectrum, with a wavelength of 587.49 nanometers. Using an instrument called a spectroscope, Janssen determined that the yellow light, which everyone had assumed to be sodium, didn’t match up to the wavelength of any known element. Both scientists arrived at the same conclusion and got busy documenting their theories. Their respective papers arrived at the French Academy of Sciences on the same day, so both astronomers were credited with the discovery of helium, the first element found in space before it was found on Earth

  • Tips To Improve Your Personal Protection And Home Safety

    We live in times when violence and crime are the order of the day, times when threats to life have increased tenfold. As such, personal safe is a necessity. Having the right personal safety measures in places is the most efficient way of ensuring that you are protected from the threats to life.

    Every family strives to fill safe and secure under the roof of their home. Granted that the police and other security personnel are a phone call away, but it is not always easy to find time to make that call when a burglar comes. Intruders can invade your home without a moment’s notice catching you unaware. Then again, you might not be at home, and that means you will not face any danger, but your property will. It still is a situation that will see you counting loses.

    You can update your home's security options using several ways that may be active or not. The first options are the stationary kind, the inactive options that include landscaping and decoration.

    Landscaping Security
    The object with landscaping security is to minimize unwanted access. You can use prickly bushes beneath windows or next to the base of the security wall. It will discourage prowlers from trying to mess with your property. Another option would be putting metal spikes or broken pieces of glass along the top of your brick security wall. You can also do this on the window sills. It will discourage prowlers from climbing over.

    Security Sensors
    You can use motions sensors attached to floodlight and mount this on the roof to catch burglars unaware and throw them off their game. Burglars get irritated and confused when their blanket of darkness is ripped away without any warning. You can better this security measure by including a warning alarm that will be noisy enough to alert people of the unwanted intruder.

    If you are working on a tight budget, you can use fake motion detectors and place cameras in different locations around your home but away from plain sight.

    Install New Locks
    Your first agenda after buying a new house is to change the locks. Consider adding new deadbolts on all exterior doors too. Making molds of keys is a simple thing that any burglar can do, or even requesting for copies made. As such, key duplication is a risk that comes with the purchase of any new residence. Consider the possible of a person you left your keys, be it the house cleaners or your car mechanic, can make copies of the keys. They can then use their new copies to gain access into your home when you are not in or your car when you have parked it. Therefore, you should consider changing your key regularly; a good measure would be doing so annually.

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