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The Things That Nobody Knows: 501 Mysteries of Life, the Universe and Everything

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3.54  ·  Rating Details ·  219 Ratings  ·  14 Reviews
A playful and diverting, yet always scientifically rigorous look at those simplemysteries that are yet to be solved

Why are so many giraffes gay? Has human evolution stopped? Where did our alphabet come from? Can robots become self-aware? Can lobsters recognize other lobsters by sight? What goes on inside a black hole? Are cell phones bad for us? Why can't we remember anyth
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Paperback, 384 pages
Published April 1st 2013 by Atlantic Books (first published 2011)
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Rex Fuller
Jun 03, 2016 Rex Fuller rated it really liked it
This is just delightful. You know how “they” always say the more you know, the more you know that you don’t know? And you have actually felt that way yourself as you lived and studied and did whatever through life. Well, to explore how abysmally, unqualifiedly, irredeemably ignorant we really are take a jaunt through this book. It’s not something you’ll labor with. You just sample it a few mysteries at a time and be thoroughly entertained.

We do NOT know:

What animal is the closest living relative
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Bharath Ramakrishnan
This is a nice book which has a long list of unknowns. However, it does not delve into an of those in detail - each of the topics gets about 1/2 to 3/4 of a page. There are many mysteries I doubt any one will care about such as people's hair, colour etc. It seems that the list is pushed to get to 501. It would have been better had there been about 201 mysteries.....
Eleanor Rose
Nov 09, 2016 Eleanor Rose rated it really liked it
Great Book!
Full of interesting and weird facts.
Isakskaar
Jun 04, 2015 Isakskaar rated it it was amazing
The things that nobody knew: 501 mysteries of life

This book is about 501 facts that nobody knew about, well maybe you knew about it but you don’t know how or why it happens/happen. But if you know everything you can just put this book down, because this book isn’t for you then. So if you are a guy or girl who likes to learn fast but hate school this book is definitely made for you, This book is especially good during summer break so you can keep your brain a little active and not kill it. This b
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Peter Mcloughlin
The begining of this book has Donald Rumsfeld's quote about unknown unknowns which is really just a butchered paraphrase of Confucious. As our sphere of knowledge grows so does its borders with a larger ignorance. This book has 501 bit sized pieces of ignorance just beyond our knowledge some of the questions we only found out that we even began to ask. Are there fish on Jupiters moons, did the moon form from an impact of a large object. Was Geofrey Chaucer a rapist, why do squirrels masturbate, ...more
Jon
Dec 09, 2015 Jon rated it liked it
This could've been like a two hour documentary entitled "What happened to the Mayans" that fades off into some unsatisfying version of "we don't know" read over flowy pan flute music...times 500. But it wasn't. There were enough backstory in each of the articles that I learned something new most of the time.

Sometimes, even the question itself provided new information. For example, where did Boudicca fight her last battle, why are 94% of giraffes gay, or why are female cats left pawed? Who? What
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Dustin Gaughran
Feb 04, 2014 Dustin Gaughran rated it it was ok
This was somewhat interesting. The problem you naturally run into is that it's basically a big of questions, with no answers. Some of the questions have popular theories and traditional legends added, I'm guessing for the sake of letting your imagination run wild. There are plenty of facts thrown in with each question, but it's still just a big book of unknowns. That may or may not work for you. I don't know.
Rema
Dec 28, 2014 Rema rated it liked it
There were quite some interesting facts and theories in this book. I found myself reading out loud to my sister and cousin some of the ones I found particularly intriguing. There were a lot of scientific facts involved and heck of a lot of paradoxical theories that both confused and interested me. Like tidbits about the universe. The philosophy aspects were rather dull and dry, which was rather disappointing as I was looking forward to that section.
Metta
Aug 28, 2015 Metta rated it liked it
This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here.
Chris
May 03, 2015 Chris rated it liked it
I found parts of the book very interesting, like the historical and literary sections, but I wound up skimming over a lot of it, like the hard science sections about quantum physics and the like. I found that very boring.
Amanda Witt
Interesting little bite sized pieces of writing about science, maths and other subjects. Some are more the unknown that were never really discovered or solved, others are putting to bed the more popular myths and establishing the truth.
Terri
Oct 11, 2013 Terri rated it it was ok
Shelves: just-skimmed, 2013
This book seriously was the things that nobody knows...including, essentially, the author. I had great hope for this book but I found myself drifting as I sifted through a listing of things I hadn't really thought about that I didn't know...and I was left unenlightened.
Shirley Thomas
May 12, 2014 Shirley Thomas rated it liked it
Really wanted to read it - but ended up very irritated that nobody knew any answers to the questions!
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Full name: William Roland Hartston.
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