Arizona Daily Wildcat
Thursday, September 29, 2005

Things you've always never wanted to know

  • The largest liquid body on Earth is the outer core. The inner core is solid iron-nickel and measures around 758 miles across. This is surrounded by the 1,403-mile thick liquid outer core. The outer core has a total volume of about 1.7 x 1020 meters cubed. It represents around 29.3 percent of the Earth's mass and 16 percent of the Earth's volume, or 100 times the volume of water in Earth's oceans.

  • In 1999, 5.05 percent of the total population of North Korea (21,386,000 people) was a member of the armed forces.

  • Scotland's Ben Nevis, the highest mountain in the British Isles, is only 4,406 feet high. In many other countries a "mountain" of this size would be considered something less than a large hill.

  • Light travels at about 186,000 miles per second. This means that when you look at the moon, you see it as it was 1.3 seconds ago, and the sun as it was around 8.3 minutes ago.

  • The smelliest substances are the man-made "Who-Me?" and "US Government Standard Bathroom Malodor," which have five and eight chemical ingredients, respectively. "Who-Me?" was developed by the U.S. military during World War II and was intended to be sprayed on German troops, then occupying France, to humiliate them. Bathroom Malodor smells primarily of human feces and becomes incredibly repellent to people at just two parts per million. The substance was originally created to test the power of deodorizing products.

  • Redwood trees sometimes grow to heights of 350 feet and produce bark that is more than a foot thick. Yet they spring from a seed that is only one-sixteenth of an inch long. These seeds are so small that 123,000 of them weigh scarcely a pound.

  • In the Middle Ages, chicken soup was believed to be an aphrodisiac.

  • The term "disc jockey" was coined by Variety magazine in 1937 to describe radio announcers who stayed up all night "riding" discs, or records.

  • The spiral-shaped part of a corkscrew is called the "worm. " The plastic tip of a shoelace is called an "aglet."