HowStuffWorks - Learn How Everything Works!

Today's Mind-blower
10 Off-label Uses of Antidepressants

There's an assortment of medications on the market to treat depression. But many of them are also effective for managing other health issues.

    • 10 Deadliest Roller Coaster Accidents
      adventure 10 Deadliest Roller Coaster Accidents

      You're more likely to die getting struck by lightning than riding a roller coaster, but that doesn't mean there isn't a long list of amusement park tragedies.

    • Will we ever cure cancer?
      health Will we ever cure cancer?

      An estimated 1.6 million people will be diagnosed with cancer in 2015 — just in the United States. How long until chemo isn't a fact of life for people we know?

    • What if China never had a one-child policy?
      science What if China never had a one-child policy?

      China's government imposed mandatory IUDs and mass sterilizations, among other measures. That's some serious micromanagement. Was it necessary to avert a population disaster?

    • Is it rude to correct people's grammar?
      people Is it rude to correct people's grammar?

      The grammar-correcting pedant is a ubiquitous character in the strange and sometime cruel realm of social media and comment sections on the Internet. Are these "grammar police" helpful or just plain rude?

    • 10 Surprisingly Canceled TV Shows
      entertainment 10 Surprisingly Canceled TV Shows

      Did you know the original "Star Trek" was canceled after just three seasons? In fact, there's no shortage of other popular TV shows that got similar treatment and were nixed by their networks, despite fan loyalty and sometimes super-high ratings.

    • What if a dog eats a chicken bone?
      science What if a dog eats a chicken bone?

      Your dog just swallowed a plate full of chicken bones. Is he really in serious danger? The short answer: yes. Find out why you need to get him to a vet immediately.

    • 10 New Uses for Old Inventions
      science 10 New Uses for Old Inventions

      You think you really know an invention until —whammo — someone comes up with a new use for it. Ointment that soothes chapped cow teats and treats baldness? Who would have thought?

    • What if Earth had rings?
      science What if Earth had rings?

      Sure, Saturn's luminous rings are a cosmic marvel, but did you know that Earth once had rings? If we still had them today, what would they look like?

    • How to Tell Someone They Talk Too Much
      people How to Tell Someone They Talk Too Much

      If your blind date just won't stop droning on, it's probably best to just let it go. But when someone's nonstop talking is affecting your workplace, that's another matter.

    • How can a bracelet track your heart rate?
      electronics How can a bracelet track your heart rate?

      Your goal is to exercise within your targeted heart rate zone, so accurate heart-rate readings are crucial. Can you depend on a bracelet to give you those results while you're working out?

    • 10 Careers Where You Can Eat for a Living
      money 10 Careers Where You Can Eat for a Living

      You love to eat, and you need to money to live. Doing the former to make the latter seems like an unachievable dream, right? Not necessarily! Here are 10 potential paths to fulfillment.

    • What if humans could breathe underwater?
      science What if humans could breathe underwater?

      Remove that pesky drowning risk, and the world formerly under the sea opens with possibility — despite our inefficient limbs and tendency toward hypothermia.

    • How a Globe of Death Works
      entertainment How a Globe of Death Works

      Daredevils testing the laws of physics and the outer limits of bikes and bodies. That's what the Globe of Death act is all about. It's a breathtaking performance, no doubt; but how do they do that?

    • Can travel change you?
      adventure Can travel change you?

      Many a travel writer has offered up colorful, anecdotal evidence that travel is a life-changing affair, and who hasn't been wooed by the potentially transformative powers of a trip to a faraway place? But does travel really change you?

    • How to Tie the Impossible Knot
      adventure How to Tie the Impossible Knot

      How do you tie a knot if it's impossible to do so? Maybe this is a trick question.

    • 10 of the Most Binge-watched TV Shows
      entertainment 10 of the Most Binge-watched TV Shows

      Slowly put down the remote control, and back away from the TV. Walter White will still be there when you get back. If this sounds like you, don't worry: 91 percent of people binge-watch their favorite shows. And these are some of the best for it.

    • Is there a right way to poop?
      health Is there a right way to poop?

      Of course we all know how to poop. But you might be missing out on a faster, healthier, more efficient way to do it.

    • 10 Big Cases of Revenge
      history 10 Big Cases of Revenge

      The concept of revenge predates legal history, and one could even say that it's simply part of who we are as humans. But sometimes the need for vengeance can kick into overdrive – as it did in these 10 infamous acts of revenge.

    • Are you brave enough to face these haunted hotels?
      science Are you brave enough to face these haunted hotels?

      Have you ever been spooked by a hotel stay? Find out how your supernatural experience measured up with these alleged hotel and motel ghost sightings.

    • What if we ran out of fossil fuels?
      science What if we ran out of fossil fuels?

      We wouldn't stop requiring power. So how would a turn to alternative energy sources work out for transportation, international trade and our daily diets?

    • 10 Misconceptions About Millennials
      people 10 Misconceptions About Millennials

      Not all millennials see themselves as special snowflakes. In fact, many of the qualities people think are inherent in Generation Y actually aren't. Which misconceptions about millennials are really just slights against youth?

    • 10 Weird Facts About Biological Rhythms
      health 10 Weird Facts About Biological Rhythms

      It's no rinky-dink Mickey Mouse clock. The body clock is a strange and wonderful thing, calibrated to reflect a variety of biological rhythms that you may not have known are beating inside your body. And scientists are still not sure why it exists.

    • 10 Ridiculous Victorian Etiquette Rules
      people 10 Ridiculous Victorian Etiquette Rules

      The Victorians were many things, but simple and straightforward in their social dealings they were not. While their rules for behavior might strike us as odd today, those wacky ways formed the backbone of Victorian society.

    • 10 Weird-but-true Food Facts
      health 10 Weird-but-true Food Facts

      Cheese never ceases to be amazing: You can set it on fire, store it in a bank or consume it with some complementary maggots. And that's just one of the foods on our list.

    • 10 Recent Breakthroughs in Marine Biology
      animals 10 Recent Breakthroughs in Marine Biology

      Marine biologists have discovered a lot about the ocean's residents while you were busy dozing on the beach. We've dug up 10 of their coolest discoveries.

    • 10 Causes of Weight Gain That Doctors Have Changed Their Minds About
      health 10 Causes of Weight Gain That Doctors Have Changed Their Minds About

      What if all the sensible advice given about weight gain is as wrong as a cottage-cheese-and-fruit diet? Turns out that setting realistic goals and taking pounds off slowly won't help you lose more weight. What else are doctors now discounting?

    • 10 Insects We Love to Study
      animals 10 Insects We Love to Study

      They're found in stupendous numbers, they don't take up much lab space and they have an awful lot to teach us about the world and its residents. Meet 10 of the insects we just can't stop studying.

    • 10 Forms of Online Harassment
      computer 10 Forms of Online Harassment

      Online harassment seems to know no bounds, with new opportunities for meanness evolving all the time. Ever heard of dogpiling or doxing?

    • 10 Myths About Hangovers
      health 10 Myths About Hangovers

      Ugh, the morning after the night before! Should you drink some coffee, lots of water or more liquor? Or have some bacon and eggs? There are lots of "remedies" out there for hangovers, most of which are useless.

    • 10 Skills That You Need to Run an Online Business by Yourself
      money 10 Skills That You Need to Run an Online Business by Yourself

      If you've had to work for someone to earn your weekly paycheck, the idea of being your own boss may seem incredibly liberating. Thanks to the rise of e-commerce, it's easier than ever to start your own business — as long as you have a few skills.

    • 10 Myths About Spiders
      animals 10 Myths About Spiders

      We seem to think we know all there is to know about spiders — they spin webs to trap prey; if they bite you, you might die; and if you find one in your house, you should set it free. But what if all these beliefs are a web of lies?

    • 10 Fun Jobs That Pay Well
      money 10 Fun Jobs That Pay Well

      You could be paid to eat or shop. Sound too good to be true? Find out which jobs let you have your cake and eat it too.

    • 10 Scientific Breakthroughs We Literally Couldn't Live Without
      science 10 Scientific Breakthroughs We Literally Couldn't Live Without

      You might argue we have scientists to thank for our own survival. What breakthroughs have kept the human race from dying out?

    • Top 10 Industrial Revolution Inventions
      science Top 10 Industrial Revolution Inventions

      During the Industrial Revolution, both innovation and the capabilities of large factories combined to thrust people from a predominantly agricultural existence into a more urban lifestyle. So what were the period's top inventions?

    • 10 Cool Inventions From the 1980s
      science 10 Cool Inventions From the 1980s

      Though the 1980s might remind you of the days of MTV and leg warmers, there was a lot going on in technology. In fact, quite a few of the technologies we rely on today were making their debut.

    • 10 Threats You Should Never Try to Outrun
      adventure 10 Threats You Should Never Try to Outrun

      Fight and flight aren't the only possible responses to an emergency situation. Flight may actually make the problem worse. When is running a really bad idea?

    • 5 Scams Foolish Tourists Always Fall For
      adventure 5 Scams Foolish Tourists Always Fall For

      When you're away from home, it takes more than a sharp eye and a tight grip on your luggage to protect yourself from theft and fraud. Take a look at this list to find out the most common techniques for separating you from your money.

    • Top 10 Cities for Urban Exploration
      adventure Top 10 Cities for Urban Exploration

      The draws of urban exploration can be tantalizing: Glimpses into architectural eras, cultures and industry gone and buried -- sometimes literally. What are 10 cities jam-packed with fascinating sites of urban decay?

    • 10 Best Street Foods From Around the World
      adventure 10 Best Street Foods From Around the World

      Sure, you can get a cheeseburger almost anywhere, but when you're traveling, why not sample the food the locals specialize in – and love? Street food gives you a tasty window into another culture. Here are our recommendations for your next trip.

    • 10 Oddball Questions Scientists Have Genuinely Tried to Answer
      science 10 Oddball Questions Scientists Have Genuinely Tried to Answer

      On its good days, science is incredible and enlightening. On its bad days, science can be anywhere from gross to downright bizarre. What are some of science's craziest questions? (And why did anyone want to answer them?)

    • Top 10 Most Beautiful Drives in the United States
      adventure Top 10 Most Beautiful Drives in the United States

      The road trip is an American tradition, and some drives are simply more beautiful than others. If you're looking to tour the country by car, which scenic routes should you take?

    • Is hippo milk really pink?
      animals Is hippo milk really pink?

      The pink hippo milk myth is the ultimate lesson for those who believe everything they read on the Web.

    • Is it OK for babies to watch TV?
      lifestyle Is it OK for babies to watch TV?

      Do programs like "Baby Einstein" help your baby learn? Experts are saying no -- and that programs like these may actually harm a child's cognitive development.

    • What if I never took a bath?
      health What if I never took a bath?

      Your initial reaction to the thought of no more baths may be "gross!" But there also could be more serious ramifications than an unpleasant layer of grime.

    • What are ancient grains?
      recipes What are ancient grains?

      These healthy grains can bring new flavors to your plate while providing healthy, whole grain goodness.

    • Are modern cars vulnerable to hackers?
      auto Are modern cars vulnerable to hackers?

      Thieves and thugs will always find a way to take something they didn't work for. But just how vulnerable are modern automobiles to a high-tech attack?

    • Is it OK for cats to drink milk?
      animals Is it OK for cats to drink milk?

      Your cat may gaze longingly at your bowl of cereal each morning, but here's why it's not really OK for cats to drink milk.

    • What if a wildfire came near my house?
      science What if a wildfire came near my house?

      Wildfires spread quickly consuming almost everything in their path -- including homes. What can you do if you see the inferno racing toward your home?

    • Do we really swallow spiders in our sleep?
      animals Do we really swallow spiders in our sleep?

      Worried about creepy crawlies entering your mouth while you sleep? Relax -- spiders have no interest in being eaten.

    • Is a 'dog year' really seven years?
      animals Is a 'dog year' really seven years?

      The old rule of thumb of seven dog years per human year typically makes dogs seem older than they really are. No fear, there's a formula to estimate your dog's age the right way!

    • How can a new car cost only $3,000?
      auto How can a new car cost only $3,000?

      Is it possible to build a $3,000 car and turn any sort of a profit? One manufacturer seems to think so. And before you ask: No, it's not India's Tata Motors.

    • What's the worst extinction in Earth's history?
      science What's the worst extinction in Earth's history?

      The mass extinction event that killed off the dinosaurs is probably the most well-known, but it definitely isn't the worst.

    • What if you drink saltwater?
      science What if you drink saltwater?

      It's all fun and games when you're on a deserted island. But then the smoke monster shows up, a strange tribe kidnaps some of your fellow survivors and you realize you haven't had a drink of water in a long time. How bad can glugging seawater be?

    • What if you traveled faster than the speed of light?
      science What if you traveled faster than the speed of light?

      The speed of light is like that annoying friend who beats you at every game. What would happen if humans one day surpassed the cosmic speed limit?

    • Do you really need to poop every day?
      health Do you really need to poop every day?

      According to the famed children's book "Everybody Poops," well, everybody poops. But does everyone poop every day? And what happens if you don't?

    • What if someone shot a gun on an airplane?
      science What if someone shot a gun on an airplane?

      In movies, bad guys can take over an airplane and start shooting up the place. Wouldn't the plane explode or depressurize as soon as the bullet pierced its skin?

    • Is brown sugar healthier than white sugar?
      health Is brown sugar healthier than white sugar?

      Brown food is better food, right? That's what you think... but then you find out what makes it brown.

    • Are online degrees worth it?
      people Are online degrees worth it?

      Congratulations! You just graduated with an online degree. But will a degree earned online benefit you in the job market? Was all your hard work worth it?

    • What if I stuck my finger in an electrical outlet?
      science What if I stuck my finger in an electrical outlet?

      Each year, approximately 4,000 people go to the emergency room for injuries caused by accidents involving electrical outlets. While this number seems high, even more people never make it to the hospital. They die.

    • How accurate are fitness trackers?
      electronics How accurate are fitness trackers?

      You believe your fitness tracker's data when it says you walked 10,000-plus steps and burned more than 500 calories today. But how accurate are those results? Could your FitBit be underestimating — or (gasp!) inflating — your daily energy output?

    • What if I never changed the oil in my car?
      auto What if I never changed the oil in my car?

      The oil in a car is a necessity that keeps things lubricated and running smooth. But what happens if you never change it? And how long can you really go?

    • Is breakfast really the most important meal?
      health Is breakfast really the most important meal?

      The first meal is often the first to go for people trying to save minutes or calories. Is it wise to start the day on empty? And if not, do doughnuts count?

    • Hummingbird Pictures
      animals Hummingbird Pictures

      Hummingbirds are a small American bird that makes a humming noise with its rapidly moving wings. There are about 300 species, mostly tropical. Check out the variety of colorful hummingbirds in this gallery.

    • Nebula Gallery
      science Nebula Gallery

      Some of the most amazing star making regions in space are highlighted in this collection of nebula pictures. Check out some stunning pictures nebulae in this gallery.

    • Squid Pictures
      animals Squid Pictures

      Squid are actually mollusks is although they look much different from their relatives the gastropods (snails) is and bivalves (clams). Check out this image gallery to learn more interesting squid facts.

    • Men of War Image Gallery
      history Men of War Image Gallery

      Becoming famous through war is nothing new -- many military men have been lauded and feared throughout history. Many have had long political careers as well. We’ve collected photos of leaders -- from Caesar to MacArthur -- who have been characterized as both heroes and villains.

    • Tiger Pictures
      animals Tiger Pictures

      Tigers, the largest members of the cat family, live in the forests, savannas and swamps in Asia. See pictures of these great feline carnivores, including the Bengal tiger, Sumatran tiger and more.

    • Beach Pictures
      adventure Beach Pictures

      Whether you're looking for relaxation or exhilaration, a coastal getaway can meet your needs. From Bali to Cali, act like a globetrotter and take a look at some of the world's most beautiful beaches.

    • Rocket Pictures
      science Rocket Pictures

      The science of rocketry is extremely complex and, at times, dangerous. This collection of images highlights the tech that gets all that science off the ground.

    • Emotion Pictures
      science Emotion Pictures

      Laugh and the world laughs with you, the saying goes. In our image gallery, experience the range of human emotions from around the world.

    • Turbocharger Pictures
      auto Turbocharger Pictures

      Turbochargers increase engine performance without adding much weight. Check out this image gallery to see just how powerful these marvels are.

    • Maya Pictures
      history Maya Pictures

      The Maya civilizations were one of the greatest of pre-Columbian America. Their achievements included a full written language and complex mathematics. Take a look at the art and architecture of the ancient Mayans.

    • Meerkat Pictures
      animals Meerkat Pictures

      If you've seen Disney's "The Lion King" or HowStuffWorks's "Meerkat Manor," you're familiar with the celebrity meerkats. And whether your favorite is the animated Timon or one of the reality TV families, it's hard not to fall for these small mammals.

    • Culinary Herb Pictures
      recipes Culinary Herb Pictures

      Culinary herb pictures will introduce you to the world of cooking from your backyard tactics. Explore our culinary herb pictures and learn more.

    • Six Strings and Git-fiddles: Guitars and Their Players
      entertainment Six Strings and Git-fiddles: Guitars and Their Players

      Gibson and Fender became household names thanks to legendary musicians like Hendrix. Strum through this collection of photos to see some of these famous guitarists and their instruments of choice.

    • Public Enemy Pictures
      people Public Enemy Pictures

      The bad, the worse and the worst. You name 'em, we've caught 'em. Check out some of the most notorious criminals in U.S. history, from gangsters to con men to bandits in love.

    • African Animal Pictures
      animals African Animal Pictures

      Many kinds of animals are native only to Africa, such as gorillas, chimpanzees, zebras, giraffes, hippopotamuses. Take a gander at these amazing African animals and see how many you recognize.

    • Marsupial Pictures
      animals Marsupial Pictures

      Marsupials are mammals that commonly bear a pouch such as kangaroos and koalas. Did you know that two thirds of marsupial species are found in Australia? Find out more by viewing this gallery.

    • Mental Disorder Pictures
      health Mental Disorder Pictures

      Mental illness affects all kinds of people. With this image gallery, learn about mental illness and its associated problems along with famous people who have struggled with mental disorders.

    • Mount Everest Pictures
      adventure Mount Everest Pictures

      The forbidding slopes of Mount Everest have captivated mountain climbers for decades. You can never really conquer Everest, merely survive it.

    • Wolf Image Gallery
      animals Wolf Image Gallery

      Wolves may be a close relative of man's best friend, but we wouldn't recommend trying to befriend these wild canines. Check out this gallery to learn all about different wolf species and their habits.

    • Brain Pictures
      health Brain Pictures

      What does your brain really look like? It depends on how it's imaged. Take a look at all the different ways we can view the human brain.

    • The Most Embarrassing Moments in the History of Science
      science The Most Embarrassing Moments in the History of Science

      What? Scientists get things wrong? We know. It’s shocking to hear, but science isn’t always an exact science. Mistakes do happen -- and they often lead to great scientific discoveries. So, grab your safety glasses and see if you can identify the most embarrassing scientific moments ever.

    • Gadget Savvy: What Women Want
      electronics Gadget Savvy: What Women Want

      What do women want in gadgets and consumer electronics? Here's a hint: It has little to do with sparkly pink electronic toenail-painters and Swarovski crystal-encrusted netbooks. Test your knowledge of what women really want from electronics with this quiz.

    • Modern Family: Do you keep up or stay silent?
      electronics Modern Family: Do you keep up or stay silent?

      Let's see how much you know about the current stats (and acronyms) of modern family communications. If you're texting prowess is legendary and your Facebook wall is always current, this should be child's play.

    • You sent how many texts this month?: A Quiz on Kids and Cell Phones
      electronics You sent how many texts this month?: A Quiz on Kids and Cell Phones

      Many parents think it would be practical for their kid to have a phone of her own, only to find her talking and texting 24/7 after she receives it. Take this quiz to see how much you know about kids and cell phones.

    • It's Tablet Time: Which one's right for you?
      computer It's Tablet Time: Which one's right for you?

      The Apple iPad still holds an impressive lead in the tablet computer market, but it's not the only game in town. With dozens of tablet models to choose from, how do you begin to find the one that's right for you? Take our quiz and see what you know!

    • How well do you know Tom, Dick & Harry?
      lifestyle How well do you know Tom, Dick & Harry?

      Many factors go into choosing a baby name. Test your knowledge of baby names, popular and unusual at HowStuffWorks.

    • The Ultimate Kissing Quiz
      people The Ultimate Kissing Quiz

      It can be a sign of love, grief or respect worldwide. Kissing is a natural act that gives millions of people physical and psychological satisfaction, but where did it originate? Why does it make us feel good?

    • How much do you know about polyamory?
      people How much do you know about polyamory?

      Is it really possible to love more than one person? People who practice polyamory think so. Find out how much you know about relationships that break the monogamy barrier.

    • Fact or Fiction: Daredevils
      adventure Fact or Fiction: Daredevils

      Adrenaline junkies get their fix by daring to do the unthinkable. These daredevils push the limits on what can and can't be done. But how much do you really know about thrill seekers? Prepare to judge yourself on your daredevil knowledge, but whatever you do, don't try these things at home.

    • Travel the World: Paris
      adventure Travel the World: Paris

      Ah, the City of Lights. Even if you've never been there, you've most likely seen it hundreds of times in movies and on TV. You might even feel like you know the city like the back of your hand. But let's get back to reality, here. How many of these Parisian landmarks can you pinpoint?

    • Travel the World: Venice
      adventure Travel the World: Venice

      La Serenissima is the Italian nickname for this "floating city" situated on 118 islands. It's one of the most beautiful cities in the world -- and one of the most overrun with tourists. Perhaps you've been one of those tourists. How much do you remember about Venice?

    • Cars of the Future
      auto Cars of the Future

      Do you ever think about what cars will look like in the future? Check out this amazing Cars of the Future graphic!

    • Backcountry Cooking: Are you prepared?
      adventure Backcountry Cooking: Are you prepared?

      Great camp cooking requires more than a stick and a pack of jet-puffed marshmallows. Take our quiz to see if you've got the tools it takes to move your cuisine from the kitchen to the backcountry.

    • The Ultimate Chicago Quiz
      adventure The Ultimate Chicago Quiz

      Chicago is a great city to visit and you will be delighted by the vast selection of leisure options. In addition to many cultural offerings, this flat city offers outdoors enthusiasts many wide-open spaces, beautiful bodies of water and numerous walking or biking trails. Take this quiz to learn more about city that was the birthplace of the skyscraper.

    • Be Good to Your Mouth
      recipes Be Good to Your Mouth

      Take this quiz to learn more about how pasta can be a part of a nutritious diet that encourages good oral health.

    • Be Kind to Your Feet: Backpacking Quiz
      adventure Be Kind to Your Feet: Backpacking Quiz

      If you don't take care of your feet on a backpacking trip, you're in for some serious pain and suffering. Show us what you know about foot care for trekking in the great outdoors.

    • Quiz: How to Experience a City in a Weekend
      adventure Quiz: How to Experience a City in a Weekend

      While it may be a challenge, it is possible to experience a city in a weekend. Do you know how to make the most of your weekend trips? Take this quiz and find out!

    • Blooms and Brides: How much do you know about wedding bouquets?
      lifestyle Blooms and Brides: How much do you know about wedding bouquets?

      Making endless decisions to plan your wedding is hard enough without having to pick out your bridal bouquet. Where's a girl supposed to start when it comes to selecting the flower arrangement she'll carry down the aisle? There are countless options and blooms to choose from, but only one answer for each question in this quiz. Get started to see how knowledgeable you are about wedding-related blooms.

    • The World's Most Legendary Shindigs
      adventure The World's Most Legendary Shindigs

      Whether we're talking about the decadent parties of the ancient Greeks, the lavish costume balls of the Gilded Age or Paris Hilton's modern-day $75,000-per-guest 21st birthday party, one thing's for sure: The world's been throwing legendary shindigs for ages. How much do you know about big bashes?

Stuff You Should Watch
check out our shows
test your knowledge
Do You Have What it Takes ... White-water Rafting
TAKE THE CHALLENGE
Do You Have What it Takes ... White-water Rafting
Average: 5 points | 8 Questions

According to white-water rafting enthusiasts, which river in Alaska features the longest stretch of continuous rapids?

Stuff ... Illustrated
poll: what do you think?

How much like your parents are you?

All About Mysteries