How Animals Eat Their Food

Best documentary ever.

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Why Waiting in Line Is Torture

Alex Stone, The New York Times:

SOME years ago, executives at a Houston airport faced a troubling customer-relations issue. Passengers were lodging an inordinate number of complaints about the long waits at baggage claim. […]

So the airport decided on a new approach: instead of reducing wait times, it moved the arrival gates away from the main terminal and routed bags to the outermost carousel. Passengers now had to walk six times longer to get their bags. Complaints dropped to near zero. […]

Occupied time (walking to baggage claim) feels shorter than unoccupied time (standing at the carousel). Research on queuing has shown that, on average, people overestimate how long they’ve waited in a line by about 36 percent.

When we’re waiting or queuing, we complain because we’re bored and it feels like wasted time. Distract us or give us something to do, and the complaints stop.

Is There a Limit to How Tall Buildings Can Get?

Nate Berg, The Atlantic Cities:

Theoretically, then, a building could be built at least as tall as 8,849 meters, one meter taller than Mount Everest. The base of that mountain, according to these theoretical calculations, is about 4,100 square kilometers – a huge footprint for a building, even one with a hollow core. But given structural systems like the buttressed core, the base probably wouldn’t need to be nearly as large as that of a mountain.

And this theoretical tallest building could probably go even taller than 8,849 meters, Baker says, because buildings are far lighter than solid mountains. The Burj Khalifa, he estimates, is about 15 percent structure and 85 percent air. Based on some quick math, if a building is only 15 percent as heavy as a solid object, it could be 6.6667 times taller and weigh the same as that solid object. A building could, hypothetically, climb to nearly 59,000 meters without outweighing Mount Everest or crushing the very earth below. Right?

Imagine the view from the top.

Study: Coffee Drinking Linked to Longer Life

Amanda Gardner, CNN:

Drinking a daily cup of coffee — or even several cups — isn’t likely to harm your health, and it may even lower your risk of dying from chronic diseases such as diabetes and heart disease, a new study in the New England Journal of Medicine suggests. […]

Even moderate coffee consumption was linked to better survival odds. Drinking a single cup per day — which was much more common than a six-cup-a-day habit — was associated with a 6% lower risk of dying among men and a 5% lower risk among women.

Like I needed another reason to enjoy a good cup of coffee.

Why Does Asian Food Taste So Different From Western Food?

Jesus Diaz, Gizmodo:

According to the study [on nature.com], Western cuisines have a tendency to pair ingredients that share many of the same flavor compounds. East Asian cuisines, however, do precisely the contrary, avoiding ingredients that share the same flavor compounds. The more flavors two ingredients share, the less likely they would be paired together in Asian kitchens.

That and the inordinate amount of Ajinomoto.