Facts You Probably don’t Need

  • The thing you stand behind to make a speech is not a podium. You stand on a podium. What you stand behind is called a lectern.


  • A baby platypus is called a puggle.


  • A typical microwave oven consumes more electricity powering its digital clock than it does heating food.


  • In a room with 23 people, there is a 50% chance that two people share a birthday. It’s called the birthday problem.


  • Uranus was originally named George.


  • The western lowland gorilla’s scientific name is gorilla gorilla gorilla.


  • Whale oil was used in automatic transmission fluid until 1973.


  • The caffeine in the coffee plant, like capsaicin in chili peppers, is meant to be a toxic substance to deter herbivores.


  • Japan’s occupation of Hong Kong in WWII from 1941 to 1945 caused the population to drop from 1.6 million to about 600,000.


      Facts by Sean McVeigh, factologist.

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