23 inspirational Light Graffiti Examples

Light Graffiti is a simple form of art using photographic techniques. Light Graffiti is made from different types of light sources and time lapse photography. This new trend to art uses the movement of light to create awesome pictures and is usually created on the streets, inside darkrooms and also at Artists studio.
Here are some few inspirational example of light graffiti. [via thedesignmag]

1. First night with the black light flashlight and the new line-making device.

2. One from the Outdoor illum’s photostream

3. Antipraticle from tcb

4. My Old Room’s Wall Posters

10. Light Graffiti at the Bulb

18 light Graffiti,light doodle

19 Traffic Light Graffiti by LICHTFAKTOR

20 Light Graffiti - HDR’d from

21 Light Graffiti from Taylor Pemberton

Did you like this post? Leave your comments below!
Found this Post interesting? Receive new posts via RSS (What is RSS?) or Subscribe to CR by Email
Read More →

Real? How to shave your balls: A lesson from Gillette

This can't be for real. Can it? Can it? Gillette wants men to shave their balls?! Serious. This is their rationale: "When there is no underbrush... the tree looks taller?!" Did Doctor Evil infiltrate their company? WTF? Watch it for yourself.

Did you like this post? Leave your comments below!

Found this Post interesting? Receive new posts via RSS (What is RSS?) or Subscribe to CR by Email
Read More →

Oil Is Plentiful, Demand Weak. Why Are Gas Prices Going Up?

Storage tankers across the globe may be brimming with oil that no one is buying because of the global economic downturn, but the traditional laws of supply and demand don't always apply to oil prices. Drivers have faced rising prices at the gas pump in recent months, as investors and oil-producing countries hoard supplies in anticipation of a global economic recovery later this year. [via time]

The 12 member countries of the OPEC cartel voted in Vienna on Thursday to maintain output at current levels rather than increase supplies in order to bring some relief to consumers, particularly in the gas-guzzling West. The OPEC oil ministers, whose countries account for about 40% of the world's entire crude-oil supply, also renewed their commitment to stick to their agreed quotas, rather than ship extra oil, as they began doing last April when several members ignored their agreed output limits. OPEC leaders, many of whose economies are heavily dependent on oil exports, have struggled to stabilize prices at a level that suits their own economic needs amid falling demand and rising supplies. Prices had rocketed to a record level of $147 a barrel last July before plummeting to $30 just five months later and beginning a new climb. (See pictures of South Africa's oil-from-coal refinery.)

Oil analysts believe OPEC's decisions on Thursday could help push oil prices even higher; oil futures on the New York Mercantile Exchange have risen 36% in just two months, to about $63.46 a barrel on Thursday. And that appears to be on track to achieve targets set by OPEC leaders. Saudi Oil Minister Ali al-Naimi — OPEC's key power player — said Wednesday that oil prices ought to rise to between $75 and $80 a barrel by the end of the year. "Demand is picking up, especially in Asia," he told reporters puffing alongside him as he jogged through the streets of Vienna. "The price rise is a function of optimism that better things are coming in the future."

The economic recovery Naimi so optimistically predicts would certainly be vital to oil-producing countries, whose own economies would be imperiled by a drawn-out recession. Oil demand in rich countries has crashed since the onset of the economic crisis last year, and is now at its lowest level since about 1981, according to the Paris-based International Energy Agency. U.S. oil inventories — the stored surplus — this month reached their highest level since the 1980s. And about 2.6 billion barrels are currently stored in commercial tankers around the world. "There is some risk we will run out of storage space in the next four to six weeks," says Simon Wardell, director of global oil at IHS Global Insight, an energy-forecasting company in London. To oil-rich countries that possibility evokes grim memories of 1998, when the Asian economic crisis sent demand plummeting, driving world oil prices down to $10 a barrel. "If we run out of storage it could prompt a collapse in the price," says Wardell. Oil producers might then choose to dramatically cut output in order to run down the surplus. (See pictures from Azerbaijan's oil boom.)

Despite such dangers, investors and oil producers are betting that global demand will roar back, apparently hoping that the recession has already hit bottom. Over the past two months, investors have plowed billions of dollars into oil futures. If the U.S. and other major industrial economies rebound, oil supplies could be depleted because the recession has prompted producer nations to freeze hundreds of projects to open new oil wells or upgrade existing ones. In the oil-rich Niger Delta, a major Nigerian government offensive against rebels has seriously disrupted production for several weeks. Venezuela's Oil Minister Rafael Ramirez said in Vienna that his country could not afford to invest in major new oil exploration unless prices rise further. "We need a level of at least $70 [a barrel] to recuperate investment," he said on Thursday. Muhammad-Ali Zainy, senior energy analyst at the Center for Global Energy Studies in London, says oil demand could increase quickly once the recession ends, especially as China has begun to build up its strategic oil reserves. "We think the price is going to go up gradually," says Zainy.

For those feeling the pain at the gas pumps, however, there is one piece of good news. Oil is unlikely to hit $147 a barrel again — at least not during the coming decades. The U.S. Energy Information Administration said on Wednesday that oil prices would likely rise to $110 a barrel by 2015 and $130 a barrel by 2030. By that time the world oil markets might once again follow the normal rules of economics.

Did you like this post? Leave your comments below!
Found this Post interesting? Receive new posts via RSS (What is RSS?) or Subscribe to CR by Email
Read More →

10 Most Suggestive Cacti On Earth

Cactus in front of a hotel in Cinque Terre, Italy
Image: Alex T.

[via environmentalgraffiti] Today, we’d like to take a look at a plant that is especially close to our, er, hearts – the cactus! The following pictures will prove that this prickly green friend can be quite a source of amusement.

First, let us introduce the species with a little help from Wikipedia: “Cacti are distinctive and unusual plants (you bet), which are adapted to extremely arid and hot environments (absolutely), showing a wide range of anatomical and physiological features (ah-huh, we’re listening) which conserve water. Their stems have adapted to become photosynthetic and succulent, while the leaves have become the spines for which cacti are well known. Cacti come in a wide range of shapes and sizes” – though we all know that size doesn’t matter.

This red cactus is apparently common in Yucatan and even said to have, er, enhancing properties if boiled and eaten as a soup. Right…
Red cactus
Image: Unknown photographer via Squidoo

The next specimen belongs to the Cephalocereus gaumeri species and is often referred to as “old man” cactus, because of the white wool on top looking like long white hairs – not what you’re thinking. The limp things hanging down from the cactus fruits are flower remains. Maybe it’s not a cactus man after all?

Cephalocereus gaumeri
Image via Backyard Nature

What this cactus seems to have too much of …
Image: Becka Spence

… this one seems to lack. Little blue pills, anyone?
Cactus gone soft
Image: Jay Free

It’ll take some balls to come out of hiding:
Wall cactus somewhere in Chile
Image: Emilio

Tom, Dick and Harry playing the same old tune…
Cacti collection
Image: Unknown photographer via Picture for fun

Pretties in pink:
Pretty cacti on Lanzarote
Image: Jay Gooby

Subtlety is not his strength:
Cactus in Texas
Image: Unknown photographer via Holybug

Going somewhere?
Arizona cactus
Image: Frobo512

At the risk of this post missing good taste by a few inches, here’s a real “cactus” problem regarding someone’s “red ball cactus” that will leave you speechless:

“I believe that is the name, it was a green stock with a red prickley ball on the top. I recieved it in first grade and a few years later, the ball dried up. I still have it and the ball is still attached but it is dried up and yellow/brown…. Could you let me know if there is anything I could do to make my cactus less overwhelming?”

Told you! There’s nothing we could possibly add after this excursion into nature’s sense of humour.

Did you like this post? Leave your comments below!
Found this Post interesting? Receive new posts via RSS (What is RSS?) or Subscribe to CR by Email
Read More →

The Video Shell Oil Desperately Doesn't Want You to See

For over thirteen years, multinational oil giant Royal Dutch Shell has done everything in its power to stop a trial from taking place at which the company must answer to charges that it colluded with the Nigerian military to commit serious human rights abuses to quell peaceful resistance to its operations in the Niger Delta region called Ogoni, including conspiring to bring about the conviction and execution of Ogoni leader Ken Saro-Wiwa and eight of his colleagues. [via alternet]

On Tuesday, there was a last-minute announcement that the trial is postponed with no new date given but it is expected to commence soon, and the plaintiffs -- Ogoni villagers and family members of people who were killed -- will finally have their day in court.

There has been a flurry of media attention as the lawyers prepare for battle in the courtroom. However, some of the most interesting events are happening behind-the-scenes in the lead up to the trial. They show that Shell continues to do everything in its power to keep the truth from coming out.

On May 12, Shell's lawyers filed a motion opposing the admission of prominent human rights attorney Paul Hoffman to serve as trial counsel for the plaintiffs.
[download PDF of the document]

As standard procedure for a trial of this kind, Hoffman had filed a "pro hac vice" application with the court. The Latin pro hac vice is a legal term meaning "for this occasion," and refers to the lawyer being granted permission to serve in a state where he or she may not hold a law license. In this case, California-based Hoffman was filing to represent the plaintiffs in federal court in New York.

In the motion by Shell's lawyers to oppose Hoffman as counsel, they explain how seriously they take it:

"Defendants' counsel have over 70 years of experience among us, and none of the three of us has ever had occasion to oppose a pro hac vice application."

So why was Shell opposing Hoffman's participation in the trial?

"However, here the website maintained by Mr. Hoffman's firm... contains an announcement that Mr. Hoffman will be one of the lead trial lawyers in this matter, along with a link to plaintiffs' "campaign video" that we have previously raised with the Court." [Emphasis added]

It goes on to conclude:

"posting of that link...is, in our view, inconsistent with counsel's obligations under the Canon 7 of the New York Lawyer's Code of Professional Responsibility, Ethical Consideration 7-33, and Disciplinary Rune 7-107."

Well, the court disagreed.

In the 'Minute Entry" of the court proceedings from May 18, the court rules against Shell's motion to deny Paul Hoffman's participation in the trial: "All pro hac vice applications are granted for the purposes of this case. The Court finds that statements made by plaintiff's counsel did not violate Rule 3.6 of New York Professional Conduct."

But then it goes on to say: "However, plaintiff's counsel must remove the video from the website."

Soon after those court proceedings, the video disappeared from the WiwavShell.org website, maintained by the Center for Constitutional Rights and EarthRights International, the two organizations who have been the plaintiffs' main co-counsel in the case.

I don't know how often or how vigorously Shell has complained about this video, but they have. And they take it so seriously that three lawyers with "over 70 years of experience" filed their first motion opposing an opposing counsel's pro hac vice application over it.

So what's the big deal? Well, you be the judge. Click on the image to watch it:


Note: I should disclose, as I did when I was on Democracy Now! recently, that I am a producer with Rikshaw Films and helped produce the video when I was working with the plaintiffs' attorneys (I no longer do).

Did you like this post? Leave your comments below!

Found this Post interesting? Receive new posts via RSS (What is RSS?) or Subscribe to CR by Email
Read More →

Scientists Discover How to Grow Plastic on Trees

plastic that grows on trees, plastic alternatives, alternatives to plastics, plastics are made from oil, pacific northwest national laboratory

[via inhabitat] We tend not to acknowledge it, but our dependence on oil is not limited to the consumption of fossil fuels for energy and transportation. Finding an alternative to plastic (which is also made from oil), is proving to be one of the most difficult problems we face today. Recently scientists at the Pacific Northwest National Laboratory have announced a groundbreaking development that provides a simple solution to the problem, transforming plant cellulose into plastic in one single step.

plastic that grows on trees, plastic alternatives, alternatives to plastics, plastics are made from oil, pacific northwest national laboratory

The vast majority of products these days are either made of - or packaged in - plastic, so finding an alternative substance that may be manufactured from a non-polluting, inexpensive resource is of paramount importance. As mentioned in the June 15th issue of the journal Science, researchers at PNNL have been able to convert glucose found in plant cellulose into 5-hydroxymethylfurfural (HMF), a basic building block for fuel, polyesters, and other petroleum-based chemicals. The main problem in creating this building block is that it is quite expensive to do, and the process yield are quite low. Furthermore, the final HMF product is laced with impurities, making it difficult to use.

Previous attempts at synthesizing HMF started with simple sugars, however researchers at PNNL have now found a way to turn plant cellulose into the building block in one single step. Thanks to clever tinkering, the team was able to extract HMF from plants by using a mixture of copper chloride and chromium chloride to break down the cellulose without creating unwanted byproducts. The chlorides didn’t degrade, which meant that the process could be repeated using the same chemicals, reducing the cost of creating HMF while yielding a product with fewer impurities.

While still a ways off from commercial applications, the process shows promise in creating an alternative to plastics. The next steps involve fine-tuning the process to increase the yields while further reducing the cost of production.

Did you like this post? Leave your comments below!
Found this Post interesting? Receive new posts via RSS (What is RSS?) or Subscribe to CR by Email
Read More →

Top 20 YouTube and Video Memes of All Time

Even before the rise of YouTube as a central hub for video, we’ve been obsessed as a culture with sharing funny and amazing videos with our friends. While most videos get a couple views and fade into the background, a select few not only gain tens of millions of views, but make a lasting impact on culture as well. These videos quickly become Internet memes that nobody can ever seem to stop talking about.[via mashable]

From the Dancing Baby of the 1990s to the phenomenon that is Susan Boyle, the web has seen its share of viral video sensations. However, these 20 are the cream of the crop. They have been seen by millions and discussed by millions more. Many of them are part of not only Internet culture, but mainstream culture too. Here are the top 20 YouTube and video memes in chronological order.

Got another video to add to this list? Share it with everyone in the comments.

1. Dancing Baby (1996)

One of the absolute oldest video memes of all time, Dancing Baby (Baby Cha-Cha) is a 1996 3D animation of, well, a baby dancing. The baby even appeared in the popular law drama Ally McBeal.

And remember, there was no Twitter, Facebook, or even Google to spread this video - it was almost all via email. Retro, no?

2. All Your Base (2001)

All Your Base was a flash animation that parodied the horrible english translation of the Japanese game Zero Wing. With great phrases like “All your base are belong to us,” “You have no chance to survive make your time,” and “Take off every ZIG,” it’s no wonder it got so popular.

3. Dancing Banana/Peanut Butter Jelly Time (2001)

The popular emoticon became even more iconic when it was synced to lyrics from the Buckwheat Boyz. Featured everywhere from Family Guy to Tampa Bay Rays baseball games, you have to wonder why we care so much about dancing fruit. The iconic video was made by Ryan Etrata of AlbinoBlackSheep.

4. Star Wars Kid (2002/2003)

It’s just a strange and awkward kid flailing around with a metal pole. Yet this teenager’s video was spread around the web, mostly via peer-to-peer technology. The star of the video filed a lawsuit against the schoolmates that distributed the video, stating that they had essentially ruined his life.

5. Badger Badger Badger (2003)

In 2003, Jonti Picking created Badger Badger Badger, a flash video with a silly but catchy tune and weird dancing badgers. The video loops indefinitely and almost seamlessly, just like some of his other well-known animations (i.e. Magical Trevor).

6. Numa Numa (2004)

Lip syncing + weird dancing + Moldovan pop music = instant viral hit. At least, that was the case for Gary Brolsma, the star of the famous Numa Numa video, where he entertains audiences with his moves to the song Dragostea din tei.

For a long time, Brolsma tried to hide from the attention, but eventually returned to the spotlight with a second, more professional video, New Numa, which is embedded below:

7. Charlie the Unicorn (2005/2006)

Charlie the Unicorn and its two sequels have garnered tens of millions of pageviews for the strange and psychedelic antics of two unicorns taking Charlie to Candy Mountain and…well, you’ll have to watch the video to know what happens.

The video became popular on YouTube in 2006, although the flash version was first posted on Newgrounds in 2005.

8. Leeroy Jenkins (2006)

This video, a clip from World of Warcraft, depicts a team trying to plan for battle with a group of enemies when suddenly, out of nowhere, you hear the rallying cry “Leeeeeeeeeeroy Jeeeeeeeeenkins!” About a minute later, everybody is dead, and nobody is happy with Leeroy.

The video became so popular that Leeroy was even part of a clue on Jeopardy!, which nobody got correct.

9. Evolution of Dance (2006)

The most popular YouTube video of all time, this video by Judson Laipply shows him dancing to dozens of songs across multiple eras in skillful fashion. Seriously, this is some unique talent. As the video aptly states, it’s “the funniest 6 minutes you will ever see.”

10. lonelygirl15 (2006)

A teenage girl, Bree aka lonelygirl15, captured the attention of lusting teenage boys and audiences everywhere with her short video blog posts. Eventually the show was unearthed as fiction by The New York Times. Bree was killed off in 2007 and the show continued until 2008.

The show’s star, Jessica Lee Rose, is now involved with video projects across the web.

11. Laughing Baby (2006)

I don’t even think I need to explain this one, but I will. A Swedish man posted a video of his baby laughing to funny sounds like “bing!” It’s adorable, so why wouldn’t the public love it?

12. Charlie bit my finger (2007)

The combination of the British accent and the baby that just doesn’t care propelled this video to nearly 100 million views. I still don’t get why it’s that popular, but this is just what happens sometimes with online video.

13. Chocolate Rain (2007)

Tay Zonday’s surprisingly deep voice, his breathing away from the mic, and the funky lyrics helped propel Chocolate Rain to the level of web sensation. It has received over 37 million views and led to a musical career for Tay.

14. Leave Britney Alone! (2007)

Chris Crocker’s reaction to negative Britney Spears coverage received 2 million views in 24 hours. I’m going to stop explaining it there.

15. The Mysterious Ticking Noise (2007)

Master flash animator and musician Neil Cicierega is responsible for some of the greatest viral videos in social media history. In the early 2000s, he created the surreal animations Hyakugojyuuichi and Irrational Exuberance, an animation based off the even stranger Yatta! Japanese pop group.

Puppet Pals was actually created in 2003 for the popular Newgrounds flash portal, but the iconic Mysterious Ticking Noise was not released until 2007. It features an addictive 2 minute Potter-themed harmony that has propelled it to over 60 million views.

Cicierega is also the creator of the extremely popular Ultimate Showdown of Ultimate Destiny video, a flash video and song featuring a plethora of fictional characters locked in battle royale:

16. Obama Girl/Crush on Obama (2007)

During the heat of the primary election campaign, this video from Barely Political was released, featuring Amber Lee Ettinger and vocals by Leah Kaufman. The result was a video with over 14 million views and a string of further successes; Amber even appeared in a video with Ralph Nader.

17. Don’t Tase Me, Bro! (2007)

When Andrew Meyer, a University of Florida student, protested at a town hall forum featuring John Kerry, University police used a taser in attempts to bring him under arrest. His response, “Don’t Tase Me, Bro!”, was spread across social and traditional media. It was soon remixed and repeated nearly everywhere.

18. Rickroll (2008)

Based off the duckrolled meme once popular on the 4chan web forum, the Rickroll is simply tricking someone into watching a video of Never Gonna Give You Up, a hit 1987 song from Rick Astley. Some would link secretly to the video, while others would place the video about 30 seconds into a seemingly normal video.

The above video is an example of someone being RickRoll’D, but if you just want the original music video with 20 million+ views, well, here it is:

19. Jizz In My Pants (2008)

Saturday Night Live has been the source of multiple viral videos. While several of them could make this list, the one that seems to have the most views is Jizz in My Pants, featuring Andy Samberg and Jorma Taccone. Interestingly enough, it’s one of the few SNL videos that are available legally on YouTube, due to it being published by The Lonely Island, the comedy group headed by Sandberg, Taccone, and Akiva Schaffer.

Jizz in my Pants is part of a long tradition of SNL viral videos. Some of the biggest hits include Lazy Sunday (Chronicles of Narnia Rap), Natalie Portman Rap, D*ck in a Box and Mother Lover (the sequel to D*ck in a Box).

20. Susan Boyle (2009)

Susan Boyle

The most powerful viral phenomenon of 2009, Susan Boyle’s unassuming appearance and killer voice wowed audiences in the auditions of Britain’s Got Talent!. Its spread is even more impressive when you consider that embedding is unavailable for the original video via YouTube.

BONUS: Keyboard Cat

Because the only way to play off a list like this one is with the Keyboard Cat, the growing Internet meme of 2009 in which painful stunts and regrettable mistakes are followed by Fatso the cat playing the keyboard.

Did you like this post? Leave your comments below!

Found this Post interesting? Receive new posts via RSS (What is RSS?) or Subscribe to CR by Email
Read More →

9 Timeless Summer Treats from the Ice Cream Man

[via divinecaroline] On sweltering summer days during my childhood, the only thing that could drag my friends and me from the respite of shade trees was the promise of sugary, iced treats. Running to the ice cream truck or the local market with scrounged-up change in hand is one of those quintessential childhood memories that many of us share. And the goodies we gravitated toward, much like the experience itself, remain among the ranks of summer’s permanent representatives, along with barbecues and swimming pools. The names may have changed over the years and the flavors may have branched out, but our favorite ice cream and Popsicle purchases are as popular and enduring as ever.

Drumstick/Nutty Buddy

Whether you called them Drumsticks or Nutty Buddys, the combination of vanilla ice cream, a peanut-covered chocolate shell, and waffle cone with chocolate at the bottom is a hit at any age. Though the makers have enhanced them with caramel and fudge swirls, they still haven’t solved the “peanuts falling everywhere” problem.

Push-Up Pops

Push-Ups come in a variety of flavors now, but when I was younger, it was orange sherbet or nothing. Kids don’t know how good they have it these days!

Otter Pops

Generally, foods colored bright blue and neon green tend to turn people off, but Otter Pops are a special exception. Not only are these portable, slushy sugar rushes guaranteed to dye tongues funky colors, but each flavor has a fun character associated with it. (I was partial to Little Orphan Orange, but my friend—who, at the age of twenty-three, recently bought a Costco-sized box for himself—swears that Alexander the Grape is where it’s at.)

Choco Taco

Not everybody grew up with Choco Tacos, but those who did carry a fondness for them that’s impossible to shake. They can be hard to find, but rest assured, there’s an ice cream cart or random mini-mart out there still selling them.

50/50 Bars

Also known as orange Creamsicles, these vanilla ice cream filled orange popsicles are a favorite hot weather treat for people of all ages.


These chocolaty popsicles don’t look especially appetizing (something about that color), especially once they start melting, but the creamy, sugary goodness makes up for their questionable appearance.

Chipwich/ IT’S-IT

Few inventions are as celebrated as the addition of ice cream to cookie. I grew up with the magical calorie bomb known as the IT’S-IT: vanilla, chocolate, or mint chip ice cream stuffed between two cookies and covered in a delectable chocolate shell. In other parts of the country, people rally around the Chipwich, which has embedded chocolate chips instead of chocolate coating. In this case, I’d say an ice cream sandwich by any other name probably tastes just as sweet.

Rocket Pops

It seems like there are as many names for this patriotic Popsicle as there are states in the U.S. Astro Pops, Bomb Pops, and Mega Missile Pops were among the most common names given when I asked friends for their top ice cream truck picks.

Eskimo Pies

Eskimo pies, which consist of vanilla ice cream surrounded by dark chocolate and placed on a handy stick, are satisfying in their simplicity. They’ve made a few different versions—one with pieces of Crunch bar or a Butterfinger-flavored one, specifically—but people still reach for the original when they want a taste of nostalgia.

Whenever we indulge in something purely un-adult, like a Drumstick or Otter Pop, it’s almost like an escape from the responsibilities of our present—we remember a time when all it took was an ice cream cone or Popsicle to make us truly happy. It’s comforting to know that for just a buck or two, we can get transported to our childhoods and give our taste buds a treat, too. And since they continue to be synonymous with summertime fun for generation after generation, chances are we’ll keep channeling our inner kids for years to come.

Did you like this post? Leave your comments below!
Found this Post interesting? Receive new posts via RSS (What is RSS?) or Subscribe to CR by Email
Read More →

10 Events That Changed History

The Invention of Gunpowder

Ironically, it was a quest for immortality that led to the invention of the deadliest weapon before the arrival of the atomic bomb. Experimenting with life-lengthening elixirs around A.D. 850, Chinese alchemists instead discovered gunpowder. Their explosive invention would become the basis for almost every weapon used in war from that point on, from fiery arrows to rifles, cannons and grenades.

Daily Life in the Agora

It was the heart of the city -- where ordinary citizens bought and sold goods, politics were discussed and ideas were passed among great minds like Aristotle and Plato. Who knows where we'd be without the "agoras" of ancient Greece. Lacking the concept of democracy, perhaps, or the formula for the length of the sides of a triangle (young math students, rejoice!).

The Council of Nicea

When Constantine became the first Christian leader of the Roman Empire in the fourth century, his vast territory was populated by a hodgepodge of beliefs and religions. To quell the controversy, in A.D. 325, he brought together 318 bishops from across the empire to the town of Nicea to find common ground on issues plaguing the new religion. It was the first ever worldwide gathering of the Church. The Christianity we know today is a result of what those men agreed upon.

The Black Death

By the time the tornado-like destruction of the 14th-century bubonic plague finally dissipated, nearly half the people in each of the regions it touched -- and 75 million people total -- had succumbed to a gruesome, painful death. The Black Death especially ravaged Europe, leading to immediate social changes, from increased wages to mistrust of the church.

Discovery of Sugar

It's unlikely that many candy lovers in the United States think about history while each sucks down an estimated 100 pounds of sugar per year, but sweet stuff once played a major role in one of the sourest eras in modern times. White Gold, as British colonists called it, was the engine of the slave trade that brought millions of Africans to the Americas beginning in the early 16th century. Profit from the sugar trade was so significant that it may have even helped America achieve independence from Great Britain.

The Declaration of Independence

When he penned the Declaration in 1776, Thomas Jefferson had an inkling of the consequences it held for the 13 colonies, who were announcing their intention to break free from the shackles of British rule. What he may not have anticipated, however, were the widespread effects his powerful words would also have around the world. The Declaration of Independence didn't just change the course of American history, but created a ripple effect that nudged a host of other nations toward independence, making a revolutionary poster boy of Jefferson in the process.

A Monk and His Peas

Working in the solitude of an Austrian monastery, one 19th-century holy man managed to unravel the basic principles of heredity with just a handful of pea species that he bred and crossbred, counted and catalogued with monastic discipline. While plant and animal genes were Gregor Mendel's original focus, his ideas later made sense of our complex human workings, too, kicking off the scientific discipline of genetics.

A Trip to the Galapagos

Boobies and lava gulls and giant tortoises, oh my! The Galapagos Islands host a faunal freak show of rare animal species endemic only to those volcanic specks isolated in the Pacific Ocean. While still very interesting to ecologists today, in the 19th century the life there proved key in Charles Darwin's seminal evolutionary theory of the origin of species. It was the fantastic menagerie of the Galapagos that ultimately lit the fire under the theory and its mechanism of natural selection, which changed biology forever.

12 Seconds in the Air

The pioneering, 120-foot flight over Kitty Hawk, North Carolina, may have gone off with little fanfare that day in 1903, but it would soon have enormous implications that wrapped, very literally, around the world. Brothers Orville and Wilbur Wright did not invent flight, but they became the Internet of their era with their invention of the first manned, powered, heavier-than-air and (to some degree) controlled-flight aircraft, bringing people and ideas together like never before.

Test-Tube Babies

Just over 30 years ago, a baby girl came screaming out of the womb much like any other. It was how she got in there in the first place that was far from average. As the first "test tube" baby born using in-vitro fertilization methods, England's Louise Brown tested the way we looked at life and science, sparking intense debates that continue to stir controversy. Though fertilization treatments existed before and have since become quite commonplace, that moment in 1978 marked a profound switch in biological medicine.

Did you like this post? Leave your comments below!
Found this Post interesting? Receive new posts via RSS (What is RSS?) or Subscribe to CR by Email
Read More →

More Post From The Web