Here’s a fun fact – everyone loves a fun fact. Realizing that, Danish infographic agency Ferdio launched Factourism – a project that’s dedicated to bringing you the most fascinating facts about our world through fun illustrations.

In an interview with Bored Panda, a Ferdio spokesman said that it can be hard to separate truth from fiction in a world where fake news and misinformation are on the rise. They said that this shouldn’t be the case and that the world is already fascinating without faking it. That’s why the agency created Factourism – a place where people can explore amazing facts about the world that combines their love for strange facts with their love for illustration.

“Sure, there already are a lot of fact-based websites and SoMe accounts, but most of these simply lack quality. When it comes to design and creativity, they often use stock images and/or text in a very generic way,” said the spokesperson. “The main problem, however, is that these facts are either doubtful or, even worse, non-existent in the first place.”

Factourism’s facts are hilarious, mind-blowing, horrifying, and cover all sorts of topics from nature to technology. “We like that you can explore all sort of things from farts, selfies, pizzas, sweat, Ikea, Nutella, sex toys, you name it,” said the spokesperson. Check out all the fun facts prepared by Ferdio in the gallery below!

More info: factourism.com | Facebook | Instagram | Twitter

#1

Image source: factourism

Geese have excellent hearing, exceptional eyesight, are very territorial, aggressive, and loud. For all of these reasons, some police stations in rural parts Xinjiang Province now have geese guarding at night.

#2

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Born in 1913, Sister Mary Kenneth Keller professed her vows with the Sisters of Charity of the Blessed Virgin Mary in the 40s, before proceeding to get a bachelor’s degree in mathematics and a master’s degree in mathematics and physics in the 50s. Finally, she completed her PhD in computer science in the 1965, one of the first two of its sort in the US, with her thesis “Inductive inference on computer generated patterns”.⁠

#3

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Seven configurations for each of the days that can start the year, times two for leap and non-leap years, it’s that simple.⁠

2020 started on a Wednesday and is a leap year, as we will get a February 29 like almost every 4 years. The last leap year to start on that day was 1992, as were 1964 and 1936, so search your attic and explore your local thrift shops, see if you can excavate a calendar to recycle for the new year!⁠

#4

Image source: factourism

It’s no secret that today’s birds are descendants to what used to be dinosaurs. To study the locomotion of dinosaurs, researchers from the faculty of science of the university of Santiago realised that by moving backwards the centre of gravity of common birds, chickens, from their hatching to their adulthood, they could get the birds to walk more or less like dinosaurs used to. How? By having the chickens wearing artificial tails.

#5

Image source: factourism

Kids aged four and six were asked to perform a repetitive task, but offered the option to take breaks playing video games instead. No need to say that they didn’t persevere much at the assignment. But across both ages, they did spend more time working in the case they were impersonating Batman.

#6

Image source: factourism

Prolific in sketches and notes-taking, Leonardo da Vinci was ambidextrous. He was able to draw and write (in his infamous backwards script) with both his left and right hands.

#7

Image source: factourism

When grapes are put in a microwave oven, especially when cut in two, their shape and material refract the waves in a way that eventually ionise the sodium and potassium content of the fruit and create plasma that ignites and takes fire. A popular science-fair/YouTube trick, Canadian scientists have since studied the phenomenon and reproduced it using artificial water beads. They note that the science behind it could serve as a base to develop wireless antennas and superresolution imaging. All thanks to someone who once wanted to eat warm grapes.⁠

#8

Image source: factourism

Several species of ants, attines, started farming 55 to 60 millions of years before humans did. They favourite food? Fungus. They organise themselves around cutting grass and leaves, bringing them back to their colony, watching after fungus growing on the harvested crop, and then collecting and eating the fungus. The fungus species evolves along with each ant species.⁠

#9

Image source: factourism

We know more than 7,500 cultivars of apples. Some are good for eating, others are better for cider, jelly, or ornamentation, certain are quite old and not fit for mass production.

#10

Image source: factourism

⁠Cleaning exposes your lungs to chemical sprays and other cleaning agents, which causes damage to respiratory health in the long term. It is especially true for people doing cleaning as their job. A study found out that over time, the impairment caused by cleaning is similar to smoking cigarettes: “This study suggests that […] long-term respiratory health is impaired 10–20 years after cleaning activities. […] The effect size was comparable to the effect size related to 10–20 pack-years of tobacco smoking.” (A pack-year being the number of packs smoked in a day multiplied by the number of years spent smoking)

#11

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In the nineties, Ethan Zuckerman was working for a website named Tripod. The website was displaying advertising, but the ads were getting in the way of the content and announcers were not always happy with the pages their banners ended up appearing on. When a big car manufacturer was not that keen of having their ad displaying on a page about sodomy the website was hosting, Ethan came up with a solution: a simple piece of code that would open the ad in a separate window. The invention took on, and spread far more than anyone would have wanted, becoming one of the most hated form of online advertisement, and leading browser vendors to implement pop-up blocking features. Ethan finally went public with an apology: “I’m sorry. Our intentions were good”. He believes that “advertising is the original sin of the web” and is now the director of the MIT Center for Civic Media.⁠

#12

Image source: factourism

#13

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Not only rabbit can recognise the smell of faeces of known predatory species, but it has been found that they are also able to distinguish the ones that has specifically been eating other rabbits. If an area houses an animal a little too fond of eating rabbits in the near past, then it is probably best to avoid this place for a while.⁠

#14

Image source: factourism

Billionaire Jeff Bezos, entrepreneur behind Amazon and richest person in the world, is worth $110 billion. He earns $2,489 a second. In 15 minutes, he earn as much as what an American with a bachelor’s degree earns in their lifetime. In the meantime, many are the Amazon workers who are edging the threshold of poverty. Bezos is notably using some of his money to launch manned space programmes.

#15

Image source: factourism

A small study, performed in 2008 in California on ten persons being recorded performing everyday office tasks, showed that they were on average touching their face 15.7 times an hour. If we consider a sleeping time of 8 hours, that’s about 250 times a day during waking hours.

#16

Image source: factourism

Or rather, a diamond can grow around another diamond, although there is only one instance of the rare phenomenon known to us. In 2019, miners in Yakutia, Russia made a curious discovery: a diamond with an internal cavity, holding another diamond. It might be over 800 millions years old and geologists have been coming up with hypotheses concerning how it was formed.⁠

#17

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Anthropodermic bibliopegy. That is the proper name for binding books with human leather rather than another animal’s. A morbid practice that was occasionally done in the 19th century and earlier. Some of the resulting books are now conserved in the Harvard Library at Harvard University.⁠

#18

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Astronauts aboard the International Space Station, and previously the Mir station, are not exempt of voting duty. They get their ballot as an encrypted PDF in their e-mail inbox, can cast their vote from one of the onboard computers, and send it back to their voting clerk. It initially required some adaptation in the law down back Earth to accommodate for this derogation, but now people in space can voice their political preference almost like anyone else.

#19

Image source: factourism

The US flag, stripes and stars, has been having a similar design since the 18th century. But with the number of states changing all the time, the number of stars had to change too. And who says a different number of stars says a different arrangement, so that they all fit satisfyingly in the blue rectangle. With the addition of Alaska and Hawaii in early second half of the 20th century, there was a need for a 50-stars design. The designer of the winning arrangement, 9 lines of alternating 5 and 6 stars, is called Robert Heft and came up with it as part of a school project. He spent a weekend cutting and sewing his flat proposal, which was accepted as an official flag by congressman Walter Moeller and finally adopted in 1960.⁠

#20

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#21

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The prehistoric monument of Stonehenge in South West England was built around 5000 to 4000 years ago and believed to have been a burial ground and to have been used for spiritual purposes. It has since become one of the most well-known landmarks, and has been forever attracting visitors. It’s very recently that the site has been protected: the land has had many owners before finally becoming public, buildings – now removed – has been built near to it, people would chisel off bits of rocks to take home as souvenirs, and until 1977 indeed, it was allowed to climb on the rocks.⁠

#22

Image source: factourism

From outside, “the Manor” in Guelph, Ontario could look like any other strip club. But it isn’t: it offers social housing to people who are recovering from addiction, live in poverty, or are just out of prison; its owner has taken the endeavour to help the poor; and a Christian pastor has been hosting a weekly service there for the past six years.

#23

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A researcher from the University of Sydney who studied a herd of cows for five months established that each cow was expressing themselves individually, voicing their emotions: excitement, arousal, engagement, or distress. In the context of farming, the research concluded that by understanding the different moos, farmers can give their attention to the individual cows who need it.⁠

#24

Image source: factourism

We often think of dinosaurs as all living in a period far in the past. But the Mesozoic Era, as it is called, lasted from 250 million to 66 million years ago. In other words, it lasted almost three times longer than the time that separate us from it now. An early dinosaur like Stegosaurus lived about 150 million years ago. A later specimen like Tyrannosaurus lived around 67 million years ago. As for humans, the earliest australopiths appeared 4 millions years ago.

#25

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#26

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Osaka is home of the Gate Tower Building (Gēto Tawā Biru), a 16-storeys tower opened in 1992 and designed by architects Azusa Sekkei and Yamamoto-Nishihara Kenchiku Sekkei Jimushō. Three of it floors are crossed by a motorway, going through a large hole in the building. The road does not touch the building and is held by a bridge, while the elevator go straight from level 4 to level 8.⁠

#27

Image source: factourism

“Ahoy”. The nautical greeting could have been the first thing you say on the phone if the preferences of Alexander Graham Bell were followed. Rather, it is “Hello”, preferred by Thomas Edison and printed in the How-To guides of many early telephone books, that was adopted by the first telephone users. Its use then escaped the telephone lines to become the word we know today. Until then however, “Hello” wasn’t used as a greeting. It could express surprise of call for attention, but was not meant to mean “Hi”.

#28

Image source: factourism

More than 300 people have died on the Everest since it was first climbed about a hundred years ago. Since removing the bodies is a dangerous enterprise in itself, and a very expensive one, most are kept on the mountain, frozen on location. In recent years, climbing the mountain has become more popular and a record number of permits has been issued, leading the paths to be overcrowded and the risks of accidents higher – meaning even more fatal ascents.⁠

#29

Image source: factourism

Most people don’t clean their phone and most people touch about 3,000 times a day. That’s a lot less cleaning and a lot more touching than what happens to a toilet seat or flush. A study found a higher amount of bacteria, yeast and mould on phones than on toilets. Keyboards, mice and trackpads are also concerned.⁠

#30

Image source: factourism

No Nazi party forcing their way into it: it was a joke. Erik Gottfrid Christian Brandt, an antifascist member of the Swedish parliament, nominated Adolf Hitler as a satirical comment on the nomination of Neville Chamberlain, UK prime minister who had just declared war on Germany. Brandt didn’t mean for his nomination to be taken seriously, and as soon as it was, he sent a letter to withdraw the application.

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