18 Intellectual Facts About Science Most People Didn't Learn In Class.
This article is based on "Science Facts: 82 Facts About Science". If you're interested in reading more, check out the link at the bottom of the article. Sources for each individual fact are found under each fact.
Almost every child grew up learning science from Bill Nye the Science Guy. "BILL BILL BILL BILL BILL!" But what exactly does it mean to be a "science guy", or as we like to call it, a scientist? Read below to find out more about one of the most popular and demanding professions.
1. Birth-order studies have found a correlation between being first-born and being a NASA astronaut, US president, or science Nobel Laureate.
2. The world's oldest creature, Ming the Mollusc, was accidentally killed by researchers in 2006 when it was dredged alive from the ocean bed of the North Atlantic.
3. Scientists discover an average of 15,000 new species every year.
4. Physicist Dr. Jack H. Hetherington was advised that his theoretical paper should not use words like "we" and "our" if there was only one author of his paper. To avoid rewrites, he added his cat as a co-author, crediting him as F.D. Chester Willard (F.D. = felix domesticus).
5. Only 25% of US schools offer computer science as a high school credit.
6. 87% of scientists believe climate change is predominately caused by human activity, but only 50% of the general public does.
7. According to a study at Oxford University and Royal Botanical Garden Edinburgh up to 50% of the world's natural history specimens in their collections are mislabelled.
8. William Whewell coined the term "scientist", meaning an expert in the study of nature, in 1833.
9. The first Nobel Prizes were awarded in 1901 to Wilhem Rotgen (Physics) for producing and detecting electromagnetic radiation for x-rays, Jacobus Henricus van't Hoff (Chemistry) for his work on chemical equilibrium and osmotic pressure, and Emil Adolf von Behring (Medicine) for discovering an antitoxin for diphtheria.
10. The discovery of penicillin was an accident. Biologist Alexander Fleming took a vacation for several weeks in August 1928, leaving behind his investigation of the staph infection. When he returned in September he found that a strange fungus had killed off the surrounding bacteria in a culture. He grew and distributed the mould for twelve years until a hospital in Oxford took up researching and mass-producing it.
11. The average number of readers of any given published scientific paper is 0.6
12. There are three main groups of science: formal (mathematics and logic), natural (physical and biological), and humanistic (behavioural and social). There's an infinite number of branches ranging from oceanography (study of the ocean) to psephology (study of elections) to systems theory (study of systems).
13. According to UNESCO there are an estimated 7 million full-time academic scientists, researchers, and support staff in the world.
14. A 10-year-old American girl accidentally discovered a new molecule in her 5th grade science class: tetranitratoxycarbon, comprised of oxygen, nitrogen, and carbon.
15. Donating your body to science means your body may be used as a crash test dummy, for medical training, for organ donation, as a body on a forensic body farm, or become part of a museum.
16. Georges Lemaitre, the person who first theorized about the Big Bang, was a Belgian cosmologist and a Catholic priest.
17. French astronomer Alexis Bouvard predicted the existence of Neptune using mathematical calculations. He noticed irregularities in Uranus' orbit and thought that the gravitational pull may be caused by another planet. Years later in 1846 another astronomer, Johann Galle, used those calculations to find Neptune using a telescope, proving Bouvard's prediction was correct.
18. Bill Nye the Science Guy he developed his scientific persona doing stand-up comedy while working as an engineer for Boeing.
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