Monthly Archives: June 2014

Reforestation

“Since the 19th century, forests have grown back to cover 60% of the land within this area [the eastern third of the U.S.]. In New England, an astonishing 86.7% of the land that was forested in 1630 had been reforested by 2007, according to the U.S. Forest Service….In 2007, forests covered 63.2% of Massachusetts and 58% of Connecticut, the third and fourth most densely populated states in the country.”

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Weather forecasts

“Forecasts today made 3-4 days out are as accurate as a 36-hour forecast was 30 years ago. So the weather forecasts are more accurate than people give them credit for.”

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History of chairs

“During the Middle Ages, chairs were not common in the Western world at all. After the Visigoths sacked Rome, their habits of squatting and sitting on the ground became the predominant ways for commoners to sit and until the Renaissance even wealthy feudal households had very little furniture because they had to keep moving around to avoid getting sacked themselves. The richest families would have had a single massive chair for the exclusive use of the master of the house; this chair was typically too heavy to move (to keep it from getting stolen when the house got sacked).”

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U.S. productivity

“We’re the second-largest manufacturer in the world even though manufacturing jobs have shrunk to less than 10 percent of our economy. We’re the world’s third-largest agricultural nation even though only 2 percent of us farm.”

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