seventy five

1 / Happy Birthday!

9th February 2011


2 / many minutes

The Rights Of Man

“Government is no farther necessary than to supply the few cases to which society and civilisation are not conveniently competent; and instances are not wanting to show, that everything which government can usefully add thereto, has been performed by the common consent of society, without government.”

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3 / 10 minutes



4 / 10 minutes

Pick A Word

“This site is dedicated to informing people about words that are not verbs, even though people misuse them that way.”

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5 / many minutes

Create A 3D Pop-out Effect With The GIMP


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6 / 30 minutes

List Of Ig Nobel Prize Winners


  • “1998 – Chemistry – Presented to Jacques Benveniste of France, for his homeopathic discovery that not only does water have memory, but that the information can be transmitted over telephone lines and the Internet.
  • 2002 – Peace – Presented to Keita Sato, President of Takara Co., Dr. Matsumi Suzuki, President of Japan Acoustic Lab, and Dr. Norio Kogure, Executive Director, Kogure Veterinary Hospital, for promoting peace and harmony between the species by inventing Bow-Lingual, a computer-based automatic dog-to-human language translation device.”



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7 / 30 minutes

Lunch With M

“She said that speaking to me about her work felt “surreal.” “We spend all our time not letting people know who we are,” she said, but admitted that she had told her husband what she does for a living. “He’s an attorney; he knows all about confidentiality.” For most others, she keeps her occupation vague. “We try not to lie,” she said. “You say you’re ‘in publishing,’ something like that.””

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8 / 10 minutes

In Almost Every Picture #9

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9 / 60 minutes

Frank Sinatra Has A Cold

“The two blondes knew, as did Sinatra’s four male friends who stood nearby, that it was a bad idea to force conversation upon him when he was in this mood of sullen silence, a mood that had hardly been uncommon during this first week of November, a month before his fiftieth birthday.”

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10 / 30 minutes

“Although these proofs demonstrate that 0.999… = 1, the extent to which they explain the equation depends on the audience. In introductory arithmetic, such proofs help explain why we have 0.999… = 1 but 0.333… < 0.4. And in introductory algebra, the proofs help explain why the general method of converting between fractions and repeating decimals works.”

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11 / 10 minutes

Manager Achieves Full Mastery Of Pointless Managerial Jargon

“According to his awed coworkers, Atkins’ usage of vacuous administrative jargon reached an almost mythical apex with the pre-lunchtime announcement, during which a string of expertly crafted drivel rolled off the 28-year-old’s tongue with the confidence of a seasoned executive.”

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12 / 30 minutes

The Making Of The Rope



13 / 30 minutes

The Grid System

“The grid system is an aid, not a guarantee. It permits a number of possible uses and each designer can look for a solution appropriate to his personal style. But one must learn how to use the grid; it is an art that requires practice.”

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14 / 30 minutes

Remembering Anchorage

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15 / 30 minutes

Wolves / Hyperbole And A half

“Benny came to the birthday party because his mom had volunteered him to help supervise the children. He must have felt out of place being the lone teenage boy amidst a flock of over-excited six-year-old girls, but we welcomed his presence. We saw him as a sort of prop that we could manipulate in our imaginary games – a living, breathing human that would submit to pretending to be whatever we wanted it to pretend to be. On that particular day, we wanted to play a game called “wolf pack” which we had invented after watching a documentary about the hunting tactics of wolves.”

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16 / 60 minutes

A Brilliant Madness


17 / 5 minutes

A Moron In A Hurry

“‘A moron in a hurry’ is a hypothetical person against whom a claimant’s concern might be judged in an English law civil action for passing off or trademark infringement. The expression is used to reject a claim that two items could reasonably be confused by a passer-by (ie that even a moron in a hurry would notice the difference), on the grounds that the items are so different that the goodwill and brand of the claimant’s item cannot genuinely be affected by the existence of the other.”

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18 / 30 minutes

Pocketful Of Dough

“I’ve never bribed my way into a restaurant. I’ve never slipped a C-note or greased a palm. In truth, I’ve never even considered it. I’ve assumed, of course, that people do such things. I’ve seen my share of Cary Grant movies.”

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19 / 5 minutes

Gerald The Gorilla



20 / 30 minutes

‘Skine Art

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21 / 5 minutes

New York City Timelapse


22 / 60 minutes

Secrets Of The Little Blue Box

“There is an underground telephone network in this country. Gilbertson discovered it the very day news of his activities hit the papers. That evening his phone began ringing. Phone phreaks from Seattle, from Florida, from New York, from San Jose, and from Los Angeles began calling him and telling him about the phone-phreak network. He’d get a call from a phone phreak who’d say nothing but, ‘Hang up and call this number.'”

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23 / 10 minutes

Polaroid SX-70



24 / 10 minutes


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25 / 90 minutes

Russian Ark



26 / 10 minutes

You Are What You Eat

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27 / 2 minutes




28 / 30 minutes

Flying Sphaghetti Monster

“In an open letter sent to the Kansas State Board of Education, Henderson parodied the concept of intelligent design by professing belief in a supernatural creator that closely resembles spaghetti and meatballs. Henderson further called for his “Pastafarian” (portmanteau of pasta and Rastafarian) theory of creation to be allotted equal time in science classrooms alongside intelligent design and evolution.”

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29 / 10 minutes

You Have No Idea How Big Africa Really Is

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30 / 5 minutes




31 / 5 minutes

Autumn In Vienna


32 / 60 minutes

Geek Power

“Early MIT hackers realized it was possible to use computers for what we now call word processing. (Their initial program was called Expensive Typewriter, appropriate since the one machine it ran on cost $120,000.)”

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33 / 30 minutes

Ever Dream This Man?

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34 / 5 minutes

Singing In The Rain



35 / 10 minutes

What Europeans Think Of Each Other

“In Heaven…

the mechanics are German
the chefs are French
the police are British
the lovers are Italian

and everything is organized by the Swiss.

In Hell…

the mechanics are French
the police are German
the chefs are British
the lovers are Swiss

and everything is organized by the Italians.”

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36 / 5 minutes

The War Of The Worlds


37 / 40 minutes

An Evening With Tom Lehrer



38 / 30 minutes

Have You Ever Tried To Sell A Diamond?

“Until the late nineteenth century, diamonds were found only in a few riverbeds in India and in the jungles of Brazil, and the entire world production of gem diamonds amounted to a few pounds a year. In 1870, however, huge diamond mines were discovered near the Orange River, in South Africa, where diamonds were soon being scooped out by the ton. Suddenly, the market was deluged with diamonds.”

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39 / 5 minutes



40 / 10 minutes

Abandoned London

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41 / 10 minutes

The Battle of Brisbane

“It is believed that the incident was never reported by U.S. media and American servicemen in Brisbane had their mail censored to remove any mention. As a result of the secrecy many rumours and exaggerated stories circulated in Brisbane over the following weeks including one saying that 15 Australian servicemen had been shot by machine gun.”

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42 / 90 minutes

The Unknown Tony Hancock



43 / 2 minutes


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44 / 10 minutes

Little Big Berlin


45 / 30 minutes

The Chess Master And The Computer

“In 1985, in Hamburg, I played against thirty-two different chess computers at the same time in what is known as a simultaneous exhibition. I walked from one machine to the next, making my moves over a period of more than five hours.”

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46 / 90 minutes

The Crusades, Crescent & the Cross


47 / 10 minutes

London From Above

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48 / 30 minutes

Kafka’s Last Trial

“Dearest Max,

My last request: Everything I leave behind me . . . in the way of diaries, manuscripts, letters (my own and others’), sketches and so on, to be burned unread.”

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49 / 2 minutes

One Year In 40 Seconds


50 / 30 minutes

The Guiltless Pleasure

“Then, lurking just outside her kitchen one Thanksgiving, I saw. It was not some magic turnip, or some deep woods spell.

It was just a damn condiment.

After mashing, salting, peppering and adding whole milk and what seemed a half pound of butter, she opened the refrigerator and reached for a quart jar of mayonnaise.”

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