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11 Things We Didn't Know Last Week

News, discoveries and ... fun

MetoposaurusArt(credit_Joana Bruno)

1. A seven-foot long, salamander-like amphibian with razor sharp teeth roamed the earth more than 200 million years ago. (Learn more at Discovery)

2. A ketchup bottle with a slippery interior can end the "anticipation" of waiting to top your hamburger or fries. (Learn more at NY Times)

Ketchup bottle by LiquiGlide

3. As they age, women's memories stay sharper than men's. (Learn more at AARP)

4. It's possible to power a small country exclusively on renewable energy. (Learn more at Discovery)


5. African Americans are much more likely to become blind from cataracts and glaucoma than Caucasians. (Learn more at AARP)

Woman with glasses

6. Unexploded bombs from World War II still cause havoc in London. (Learn more at The Independent)

7. At its current pace, ivory poaching could make the African elephant extinct within several decades. (Learn more at Time)

African Elephant with baby

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8. An apparatus patented by a New Jersey inventor can "catch" sneezes and avoid the spread of germs. (Learn more at Improbable Research h/t Time)

Sneeze catcher patent drawing

9. A new treatment for erectile dysfunction uses a blue light instead of a "blue pill." (Learn more at ETH Zurich via Futurity)

10. As people age, they grow to trust others more, and that's generally a good thing. (Learn more at Northwestern University and University of Buffalo via Futurity)

Older people holding hands

11. Women outnumber men 10 to 1 in the nursing profession, but men are generally better paid. (Learn more at NPR)

Bonus video: As the NCAA March Madness heads toward the Final Four in April, here's Jimmy Fallon with Villanova's "crying piccolo girl":

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Learn something this week? Mail your ideas to, and we’ll try to include your story next time.

On Twitter, we’re using the hashtag # 11things.

Images — Scary salamander: illustration by Joana Bruno; Ketchup bottle: Courtesy of LiquiGlide; Solar panels: Courtesy of Sun Power Costa Rica; Woman with glasses: Jennifer Photography Imaging/iStock; African elephants: Peter Steward/Flickr; Sneeze catcher patent drawing: Joseph Apisa of Colts Neck, N.J., via Improbable Research; Older hands: Eva-Katalin/iStock.

Music – Smithsonian Jazz Masterworks Orchestra plays Jimmie Lunceford and his Orchestra – Blue Blazes by Sy Oliver, Creative Commons, courtesy of Smithsonian Remix project.

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