To measure distances in deep space, you need to look for candles in the darkness. [2 of 2]
In 1930 the Swedish match magnate Ivar Kreuger negotiated a legal monopoly with Germany; it lasted for fifty three years.
The Salt Cathedral lies 200 metres below the surface of Zipaquirá, Colombia.
In 1981 Phillip Lewis released potato chips flavoured like roasted hedgehog. In 1982 the UK government prosecuted him for false advertising because the chips did not contain real hedgehog.
The new terminal building of Ottowa’s international airport was supposed to open in 1959. After one pass by a US air force jet the day before the opening ceremony, it could not open until 1960.
John F. Kennedy, Aldous Huxley, and C. S. Lewis all died the same day. The following day, Doctor Who premiered.
Walter E. Scott performed in Buffalo Bill’s Wild West Show, scammed thousands of dollars with a fake gold mine, set a cross-country train speed record, and claimed to be building a castle in the midst of Death Valley.
Up until 1982, all crystals were believed to be, by definition, periodic. But then an Israeli materials scientist discovered something strange…
A bit of the Apollo 12 rocket from 1969 is still floating around out in space. It orbits the sun – but every thirty or forty years it comes back to orbit the Earth for a while.
In 1994 the art duo K Foundation burned a million pounds in cash. They did it on purpose.
In 1976 most African countries boycotted the Olympics because the games would not ban New Zealand.
Bir Tawil is a wedge of land between Egypt and Sudan. Neither wants to claim Bir Tawil: it is one of the only unclaimed territories in the world.
Everyone eagerly anticipated Halley’s comet showing up in April 1910. It came as quite a surprise, then, when another brighter comet appeared just four months before: the Daylight Comet.
An urban legend from the late 1980s claimed that Soviet scientists had drilled so far down they hit hell – and brought back an audio recording of the suffering souls. But it was actually Baron Blood.
Since 1939 an author named Nicolas Bourbaki has published a series of volumes on pure mathematics. But Bourbaki does not exist.
The late 19th and early 20th centuries saw many feminist utopias that portrayed a society run by women: by Charlotte Perkins Gilman, Irene Clyde, former New Zealand prime minister Julius Vogel, and the influential Bangladeshi author Begum Rokeya.