wiseGEEK: Learn Something New Every Day

Clear Answers for Common Questions

Latest articles

Despite the popular image, most elephants don't like peanuts.

Contrary to images in popular media, most elephants do not like peanuts. Not only is there no evidence of elephants voluntarily eating peanuts on their own in the wild, but zoos and circus trainers also do not typically feed the animals peanuts. An adult elephant eats an average of 300 pounds (136 kg) of food per day, and peanuts generally would not...

Barbie dolls didn't have a belly button until the year 2000.

The Barbie doll has had a belly button since 2000. In 1959, the doll was created by Ruth Handler, who with her husband Eliot Handler went on to co-found the Mattel toy manufacturing company. The original Barbie was the first adult-proportioned doll and was modeled after the glamorous image of Hollywood actresses of the 1950s, with either brunette or...

Barbie dolls didn't have a belly button until the year 2000.

The Barbie doll has had a belly button since 2000. In 1959, the doll was created by Ruth Handler, who with her husband Eliot Handler went on to co-found the Mattel toy manufacturing company. The original Barbie was the first adult-proportioned doll and was modeled after the glamorous image of Hollywood actresses of the 1950s, with either brunette or...

US President Gerald R.Ford was born Leslie Lynch King Jr.

Gerald Ford, the 38th president of the United States, was given the name Leslie Lynch King Jr. when he was born. He was named after his father, Leslie Lynch King. His mother, Dorothy Gardner King, and his father got divorced within six months after the birth in 1913, and she got remarried in 1916 to Gerald Rudolff Ford. After the marriage, Leslie Lynch...

The mass of all humans and domestic animals has increased by more than 3.5 times in the past century.

The total mass of all humans and domestic animals increased by nearly 3.5 times from 1900 through the early 21st century. This increase is thought to be the result of more easily accessible sources of food. The population of wild animals did not follow the same trend as domestic animals — it actually decreased by an estimated 25% from 1960 through the...

A neighborhood in Hangzhou, China, includes scaled-down versions of the Eiffel Tower and a Paris boulevard.

The original Eiffel Tower is located in Paris, France, but there an estimated 30 replicas of various sizes all over the world. Some of the largest and most detailed replicas are found in China. A full-size version, known as Dragon Tower, is in Harbin, Heilongjiang Province, and it is the tallest steel building in China at 1,102 feet (336 m). A neighborhood...

A cow requires more than 17 pounds (about 8 kg) of feed to make 2.2 pounds (1 kg) of beef.

It is estimated that more than 17 pounds (8 kg) of grain feed is required to produce 2.2 pounds (1 kg) of beef. By comparison, poultry requires about 4.4 pounds (2 kg) of feed to produce 2.2 pounds (1 kg) of meat. As demand for beef and other meat grows worldwide, critics say that diets high in animal protein are damaging to the environment because...

More than 35 countries legally require paid employee leave of at least 3 weeks a year. The US requires none.

Vacation time is legally required for employees in 70 countries, and more than 35 countries legally require a minimum of three weeks paid time off. Austria requires the most paid vacation days, about 42 days as of 2011, and Brazil and France each required 30 days of paid time off. Under the Fair Labor Standards Act (FLSA), no one in the US is legally...

US President Gerald R.Ford was born Leslie Lynch King Jr.

Gerald Ford, the 38th president of the United States, was given the name Leslie Lynch King Jr. when he was born. He was named after his father, Leslie Lynch King. His mother, Dorothy Gardner King, and his father got divorced within six months after the birth in 1913, and she got remarried in 1916 to Gerald Rudolff Ford. After the marriage, Leslie Lynch...

The most commonly adulterated foods (impure/unsafe foods) are olive oil, milk, honey, and saffron.

Adulterated foods are items marketed as pure but that actually have other substances added to them without the consumer’s knowledge, with the most commonly affected products being olive oil, milk, honey and saffron. The US Pharmacopeial Convention (USPC) has developed a database of more than 1,000 instances of food adulteration from 1980 to 2010. The...

Discover, share and read the best on the web

Subscribe to RSS Feeds, Blogs, Podcasts, Twitter searches, Facebook pages, even Email Newsletters! Get unfiltered news feeds or filter them to your liking.

Get Inoreader
Inoreader - Subscribe to RSS Feeds, Blogs, Podcasts, Twitter searches, Facebook pages, even Email Newsletters!