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Why is San Jose’s airport so close to downtown?

This is Ronald Reagan Washington National Airport. In the background is downtown Washington, D.C. Reagan National is approximately a 1–1.5 hr walk from the White House, depending on which part of the airport you start in. This happens to be roughly the same as the walking time between San Jose International and the center of […]

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What does my Cyrillic handwriting look like?

The image below says: “The little bears deprived the chinchillas of a lily, and the chinchillas deprived the little bears of a pinecone.”Hehe, sorry, couldn’t pass up the chance. Here’s a more normal looking writing sample:I imagined there would be a lot of beautiful penmanship in the thread so I feel like contributing something a little more […]

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UChicago over Stanford?

UChicago is higher ranked than Stanford (US News) because UChicago happens to be better at generating the right stats for the methodology. You could call it gaming the system, but that’s unfair since it’s mostly not deliberate. According to Parchment.com’s statistics, about one in three students choose UChicago over Stanford, if admitted to both.Here’s a walkthrough of […]

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Why does England have so many more people than Scotland and Wales?

It’s mostly a matter of physical geography. Take a look at this satellite image of the British Isles, without any borders. Right away you can see where the hilly and mountainous terrain is – mostly in Great Britain’s north and west. Mountainous terrain gives you benefits as well as drawbacks: The rugged land is more […]

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Response: “Why are ghettos mostly populated by blacks?”

I’ll start by saying that not all ghettos are populated by blacks. The word ghetto itself comes from an Italian term for the area of the town to which Jews are restricted (ethnic Jews are not black). In the United States, the term ghetto has come to mean an urban or suburban area that is […]

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The Unscientific Bay Area

If you think this would make a cool poster, for $9 I’ll send you a high-res, print-worthy PDF! Originally this was supposed to be the start of a line of posters, but it failed to gain traction, despite overwhelmingly positive reactions. Nonetheless, below’s the original post for posterity. I was really inspired by all the positive […]

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If the world federates into one nation, where would the capital be?

New York.I agree with S. Ranck that most likely there would not be a single capital where the entire government is located. However, in terms of a city that serves as a figurehead for the “world government”, it would very likely be New York City.New York is already where the United Nations has their official headquarters, […]

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Why is Mexico viewed as a Third World country?

It’s not anymore, at least not by anyone who knows what they’re talking about. It’s poorer than the US, but Mexico’s Human Development Index score is 0.756, which is officially considered “high”. But this photo of Mexico City perfectly illustrates the problem.The problem in Mexico is inequality. The raw human development score for Mexico makes […]

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