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Coding with Bill

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In honor of Computer Science Education Week, Code.org is featuring videos from the tech industry’s leading lights – Bill Gates, Mark Zuckerberg, and representatives from Apple, Amazon, Yahoo, and more—teaching absolute beginners the basics of coding. With some tutorials as short as an hour, it can’t hurt to give it a try.

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In case you missed it, Beyoncé surprised her fans by releasing her latest album this week with no prior notice—happy holidays, Sasha Fierce fans.

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Ian McKellen (otherwise known as Gandalf), another celebrity with an apparent fondness for surprises, showed up unannounced to a midnight screening of The Hobbit: The Desolation of Smaug. He wished the theatergoers “a wonderful time.”

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The most-read books of the past 50 years tend, not surprisingly, to skew towards the twentieth-century.

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Amateur photographer Paul Williams got quite a view when his London-to-New-York flight happened to cross paths with a spectacularly vibrant aurora in the sky. He shot a series of photos and compiled them into a time-lapse video, which can be viewed from the comfort of your own home with plenty of legroom.

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Given a large enough sheet of paper, Swiss artist Sipho Mabona is convinced he can fold a life-size origami elephant out of it. Sounds ambitious, to say the least.

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The mall car-chase scene from The Blues Brothers recreated in Lego form is just as fun to watch as the original – in fact, maybe even more so.

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“Yesterday was Friday,” indeed: proving that not all viral video fame goes to your head, Rebecca Black of earworm-y “Friday” music video infamy has released a tongue-in-cheek follow-up, appropriately entitled “Saturday.” The self-aware send-up of her earlier song is surprisingly catchy.

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Einstein is Proved Right (Again)
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Deep in the Heart of Our Galaxy, Einstein is Proved Right Again. His theory of general relativity holds true even at the black hole near the center of our galaxy.

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"Total Eclipse of the Heart" Was Almost a Meat Loaf Song. It was written for him, but then detoured to Bonnie Tyler.

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The Atomic Bomb That Was Too Big To Use. The largest nuclear bomb ever made, Tsar Bomba, was actually a scaled-down version of the original design.

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6 Weirdly Specific Ideas Movies Have About Normal Bathrooms. You'll be surprised by the many times the same weird thing happens in a bathroom across different fictional worlds.

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What It’s Like to Apartment Hunt With a Boyfriend Who Has No Credit Score. He's a responsible guy, but couldn't prove it on paper.

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The 33 Most Romantic Moments In TV History. Get your hankies out.

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27 Hilariously Nasty Sounding Mushroom Species Names. They would be hurt by them if they had feelings.

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The Mind-Bending Science of Awe
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The Mind-Bending Science of Awe. Encountering something that overwhelms your previous experience can be terrifying or enlightening.

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Dominoes and Fire. See a chain reaction of dominoes—powered by candles, hot air, and burning sparklers.

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Alan Hale Jr. "The Skipper." Meet the man behind the Gilligan's Island character.

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The 9 Most Nightmarish Movies About Nuclear Attacks. None of them are as scary as growing up during the Cold War arms race.

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5 Tips from NASA for Photographing the Total Solar Eclipse on August 21. The secret is preparing ahead of time.

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The Bloody San Antonio Origins of Chili Con Carne. One of the possible origin stories goes back as far as an uprising in 1813.

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The United States of Movies. The most iconic film set in each state, plotted on a colorful map.

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7 Spacecraft NASA Has Landed on Mars. Some future civilization may discover it and call it a robot planet.

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