Fun with research

One of my favorite web sites is the straight dope. It’s different than mythbusters because it works primarily historically, using research rather then experimentation. It’s better than snopes because it Takes on a wider range of topics and answers them more fully. Additionally, since the straight dope appears in newspapers it is often given more time by experts than some interweb site. (Not to mention is is written with far more skill)

Anyway, here’s a couple recent ones to get you started:

The Straight Dope: Can I mail a brick back to a junk-mail firm using the business
reply envelope?

Incidentally, Win, of the 161,000 people who wrote to the DMA last year, 116,000 wanted more junk mail. They were sent a booklet entitled “How To Get More Interesting Mail” (as God is my witness, I am not making this up), which tells you various key catalogs that you can send for to guarantee you’ll be deluged with stuff.

The Straight Dope: Could a human swing through the jungle on vines?:

The more you investigate, in fact, the more you realize vines wouldn’t make for a practical system of locomotion. Investigate further still and you come to an additional conclusion: Tarzan creator Edgar Rice Burroughs didn’t think they would either.

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