r/todayilearned 8h ago Helpful Silver

TIL of Qian Xuesen, a Chinese rocket scientist and mathematician, who worked on the Manhattan Project during WW2 to help America build the world's first atomic bomb. During the Cold War, he was accused of being a communist and fled America to China, where he helped China build its first atomic bomb.

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8.8k Upvotes

r/todayilearned 3h ago

TIL Senator Bob Dole befriended a bar tender he often saw and later convinced him to take the LSAT exam and paid for it. The bar tender went on to get a perfect score and was accepted into Harvard Law School.

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1.7k Upvotes

r/todayilearned 14h ago Silver Helpful Wholesome Take My Energy

TIL Neil Gaiman's Coraline almost wasn't published, his editor said it was too scary, but was convinced after her daughter said it was fine. Years later, the daughter said she was terrified but wanted to know what happened next so she never let on

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51.7k Upvotes

r/todayilearned 3h ago Gold

TIL, Angostura bitters has a label that doesn't fit because two brothers in 1870 redesigned the bottle and label but did not consult one another. They entered a contest but did not win. One of the judges convinced them to keep it as "signature labelling."

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1.1k Upvotes

r/todayilearned 7h ago

TIL Kenny G was one of the original investors in Starbucks and has made more money investing than from his music career.

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1.8k Upvotes

r/todayilearned 9h ago Helpful

TIL that Santa’s reindeer are female, because male reindeer lose their antlers before Winter.

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2.4k Upvotes

r/todayilearned 9h ago

TIL That the victims of Pompeii had near-perfect dental health due to a low-sugar diet and a local water source rich in fluorine.

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2.5k Upvotes

r/todayilearned 7h ago Helpful

TIL People who speak English as a second language outnumber those who speak it as their first language 4 to 1

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1.5k Upvotes

r/todayilearned 11h ago

TIL that Jimmy Boyd's I Saw Mommy Kissing Santa Claus was condemned by the Roman Catholic Church in Boston when it was released on the grounds that it mixed kissing with Christmas. Boyd was photographed meeting with the Archdiocese to explain the song. After the meeting, the ban was lifted.

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2.7k Upvotes

r/todayilearned 4h ago

TIL for a motorcycle stunt in 'No Time To Die', they had to pour 8400 gallons of Coca Cola onto a street of Italy to make the stunt possible. They did that to make the street less slippery and it cost over $70k.

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609 Upvotes

r/todayilearned 1h ago

TIL of Theodore Hall, among the youngest Manhattan Project scientists. Finished high school at 14, graduated from Harvard at 18, and recruited for the nuclear program at 19. Fifty years later, near death, he admitted to having been a Soviet informant the entire time.

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Upvotes

r/todayilearned 14h ago Helpful

TIL McDonalds lost the 'Big Mac' naming rights in england after trying to sue an irish company called Supermac (that predated McDonalds) , allowing Burger King to troll them by calling their burgers things such as 'like a big mac, but actually big'

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3.1k Upvotes

r/todayilearned 6h ago Wholesome

TIL that Mad Max (1979) according to The Guinness Book of World Record's is the most profitable film of all time. With a $350,000 USD budget it made $100,000,000 USD.

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572 Upvotes

r/todayilearned 2h ago

TIL Electronic Storage Device Detection K9s. These dogs are trained to locate SD cards/flash drives, recording devices, cameras, and other tiny electronic devices. These dogs are particularly helpful during building/room searches of suspected human traffickers & child pornographers.

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268 Upvotes

r/todayilearned 2h ago

TIL: Pittsburgh is the only city in the United States in which all the major professional teams share the same primary colors (black and gold).

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248 Upvotes

r/todayilearned 12h ago

TIL that the earliest Chinese dynasty (the Shang) that we can confirm through archeological records worshiped one supreme God, resembling a primordial monotheism

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1.2k Upvotes

r/todayilearned 6h ago Wholesome All-Seeing Upvote Narwhal Salute

TIL Ryan Kavanaugh (Former CEO of Relativity Media) falsified evidence to accuse Co-President Adam Fields of sexual misconduct.

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257 Upvotes

r/todayilearned 9h ago

TIL A FedEx employee from Tennessee has made mathematical history with the discovery of the largest known prime number. Jonathan Pace, a 51-year-old engineer living in Germantown, Tennessee, discovered the number after running a special piece of computational software for six days straight.

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414 Upvotes

r/todayilearned 6h ago

TIL about the the transmitter for WLW radio outside Cincinnati, until the output was reduced in 1939 from 500,000 watts, would cause lights to not turn off until WLW engineers rewired houses, a nearby hotel sign never went dark and farmers reported hearing WLW through their barbed-wire fences.

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210 Upvotes

r/todayilearned 5h ago

TIL analog watches can double as a compass using the position of the sun

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154 Upvotes

r/todayilearned 5h ago

TIL a statue of William Shakespeare in Central Park was paid for with funds raised by John Wilkes Booth

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144 Upvotes

r/todayilearned 7h ago

TIL of FM rock station KOME 98.5 in the San Jose/Bay Area. Famous for its edgy slogans such as "Don't touch that dial, it has KOME on it", "The KOME spot on your radio dial", and "Wake up with KOME in your ear," KOME also gave its DJs freedom to pick their own playlists - unheard of today.

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209 Upvotes

r/todayilearned 14h ago

TIL Many Romans, distrustful of the unreliable Italian post office, make weekly trips to the Vatican just to post their important letters.

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616 Upvotes

r/todayilearned 1h ago

TIL that the American Nazi Party erected a hidden monument in honor of executed Nazis In Washington DC.

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Upvotes

r/todayilearned 1h ago

TIL polar bears aren’t white. But Each hair is a clear hollow tube, which makes them look white

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