Kate Kershner has a degree in creative writing from Western Washington University and has written more than 400 articles for HowStuffWorks.
Every year a bunch of guys in top hats pull a wriggling rodent out of a hole and allow him to predict the weather. And we all take this seriously. Is Phil the groundhog really accurate or is he secretly giggling at us?
Thunder in the winter is a pretty cool phenomenon. It's unexpected, plus some say when you hear it, snow will arrive within seven days. If you hear thunder during the winter, should you get your snow shovel ready?
For your average computer user, operating systems like Windows or the MacOS are par for the course. But what if there wasn't an operating system? Would the computer still, well, compute?
By Kate Kershner & Talon Homer
Compared to dogs, cats, guinea pigs and rabbits, rats and mice are by far voted Most Popular in research labs. (Dogs and cats are tied for Best Looking.) What's the attraction for scientists?
When reeling off dubious facts (like lemmings plunging off cliffs en masse), there's no better retort to a skeptical audience than calmly explaining that it's not just true — it's science. Except sometimes it's neither.
A blinding smog enveloped London in 1952, wreaking havoc on the city, bringing life to a standstill and killing thousands.
One of the best things about autumn is watching the leaves change color to fiery hues of red, gold and orange. Some say a rainy summer leads to an extra-vivid leaf show. Is that true?
The Zone of Silence is Mexico's own Bermuda Triangle, a place where radio signals don't work and an alien might just turn up. But what is the real story behind it?
Leash your cheetah, buckle your seatbelt and tell Usain Bolt to take a knee. We're about to power through some of the speediest stuff this universe – both in the real world and in fiction – has to offer.
Forget George Washington’s cherry tree and Ben Franklin’s inveterate womanizing. You're about to meet patriots you've never heard of, plus a few you thought you knew.
From Margaret Wise Brown to Beatrix Potter, some children's authors have reputations for disliking kids. Are the rumors true?
Chicago has long been known as "The Windy City." It's a pretty cool nickname, but does it live up to it?
Women looking to stop smoking may have more success if they time it with their cycle, a small, new study suggests.
In an era of strict social rules, dance cards let gentlemen "claim" ladies for their turn on the floor. A full dance card was a sign of popularity.
Have you ever met someone with a unique first name, and then all of a sudden you hear the name everywhere you turn? That's the Baader-Meinhof phenomenon at work. How did it get that handle?
There's a tornado coming! What do you do first? Grab your valuables? Seek shelter? Panic? Open the windows? Wait, what? Some say opening the windows in your house makes a tornado cause less damage. Read on to find out the truth.
A double rainbow, man! Just the sight of one can send us babbling into happiness. And why not? Rainbows are beautiful. And two rainbows at the same time? Even better. But just how rare are these colorful arcs?
Seven ounces a ray! No, that's a lie. Measuring the weight of light is not as straightforward as that. So what's the more complicated explanation?
A snow day is the best. Everyone misses school, and you get to sleep in and spend the day in glorious, chilly nature. But then everyone gets sick of being cold, and suddenly the house seems extremely small. We can help.
We humans have figured out a lot of strange ways to measure the weather. A cricket's chirps can tell us the temperature. The open scales on a pinecone signal a dry spell. But can a ring around the moon really predict rainy days ahead?
Turning saltwater into tasty, drinkable H20 at desalination plants like this one is probably the biggest selling point of reverse osmosis, but let's back up a minute. What's osmosis, and why -- and how -- is reversing it useful to us?
There's still a lot we don't know about the world. A thousand years ago, we thought we could literally sail off the edge of the planet. Good thing we're quick learners. But while space may be the final frontier, the ocean may be the greater mystery.
C'mon. You know you've thought about this. We have, too. Want to see how your list compares with ours?
Wacom tablets aren't your average tablet PCS. They're pen tablets that allow artistic professionals and hobbyists alike to capture their art in a digital fashion.
You moved from one state to another last year, and now it's tax time. Don't freak out. Paying income taxes in two states is actually a pretty simple process, if you know all of the IRS rules.