Oct 10, 2019

Random Thursday

We are just about finished with Doug Lennox's The Little Book of Answers! We'll have one more round of it next week, but after that, we're finito! Luckily, I've got another book lined up!

(image borrowed from Encyclopedia Britannica)
In the 17th century, long before we had computers, a "computer" was someone who did calculations as an occupation. It wasn't until the 1940s when there was a development of massive electronic data machines that the job became obsolete. The mechanical machines were soon given the name of their once human counterpart.

Computers just take over everything...since 1940 apparently!

(image borrowed from Wikipedia)
"Big Ben" doesn't refer to the clock nor the tower of England's House of Parliament. It actually refers to the largest of the bells in the tower itself. The bells were installed in 1858 and earned the name "Ben" after Sir Benjamin Hall, the commissioner of works who was responsible for adding the 13.5 ton bell to the tower.

Huh...I always did think it was the whole tower/clock structure that was named Big Ben. 

(image  borrowed from National Today)
Near the end of the 19th century, most candies were too big for a child's mouth as well as being an unwrapped, sticky and messy candy, most parents avoided buying it for their children. Then in a stroke of genius, George Smith of Connecticut solved the problem by putting the candy on a stick. He named his invention after a famous racehorse of the time, Lolly Pop.

Wow. We have the name lollipop due to a racehorse! How adorable!

(image borrowed from Youtube)
Written punctuation didn't come about until the end of the 15th century when the Italian printer, Aldus Manutius introduced it. Proper use of punctuation is a learned skill that eludes even writers. Mark Twain filled the last page of a manuscript with various symbols of punctuation and instructed his editor to disperse them within the story as he saw fit.

Omg, LOL!!! That is hilarious!

(image borrowed from Proofreading and Editing Services)
B.C., A.D., B.C.E., and C.E. were used to give historical events dates. In 525 A.D., the Christian church started their calendar off with year 1 A.D. starting with Christ's birth referring to it as "annon Domini." Any of the events in the years before his birth were referred to as B.C. "before Christ." But since these have religious roots, non-Christians replaced B.C. with B.C.E. for "before the Common Era" and A.D. with C.E. (the Common Era).

I could never remember what these stood for. I mean I always remembered B.C. but couldn't remember the Latin for A.D. and the whole C.E. eluded me too! Lol.


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