What is the Tallest Building in the World?

Before you can answer that question, you have to first answer a number of other questions and define what kind of building it is.

Is the building a tower or communications antennae or does it serve some other purpose?

Where do you start measuring the building? Do you include the basement, underground supports or, in some cases, the underwater portions of the structure?

Additionally, if an antennae is added to the top of the structure, do you include it to be part of the measurement? Continue reading

How Tall is the Eiffel Tower?

The Eiffel Tower, including the spire, is 324 m ( 1063 feet) tall.

A world wide symbol of both Paris and France,  construction on the tower began in 1887, and was completed in 1889. The tower was originally built as one of the exhibits in the Paris World Fair of 1889.

The man behind the tower was Alexander Gustave Eiffel. It was originally built for and entered into a contest that had been organized by the French Government. The Eiffel Tower won the contest with over more than 700 other entries. Upon completion, the Tower was not universally popular. In fact, there were many who were opposed to it and considered it be an eyesore. Among those who felt this way were, Alexander Dumas, Charles Garnier, Jean-Louis-Ernest Meissonier and Charles Gounod.
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Amazon River Trivia

amazon riverThe Amazon River Basin remains one of the most unchanged and undisturbed areas on the planet. The Amazon River itself, is a mecca of animal, plant and fish life. There are very few people who live on the Amazon and life there has changed very little in the past hundred years. There still remains much to be learned about and from this wonderful unique area of the planet.

The Amazon river is the second longest river in the world. It is 6280 km (4080 miles) in length. The only other river that is longer is the Nile River in Africa.

The width of the Amazon varies between 6 and 11 km. It is among the widest rivers in the world.

The river was named by Spanish explorer Francisco Orellana. Francisco was part of an expedition that was exploring the interior of South America. He and his men began their journey on the Coca River and followed it until it joined the Napo River. Francisco and his crew continued tracking the Napo River eastward, and discovered that it merged in to the Negro River and then into the Rio Grande (what is now called the Amazon).

The Amazon River is known to be the home of more than 2500 species of fish. New varieties are still being identified. Continue reading

Stonehenge Trivia

stonehengeStonehenge is one of the world’s oldest mysteries. Why was this huge monument built? Was it a simply a burial mound? Was it built perform rituals and ceremonies, as the alter stone suggests? It is perfectly aligned to match the mid summer solstice, Why? Was it used as an observatory or part of an astronomy festival. And just as mysterious, how was it built? These riddles are still puzzling the world’s best scholars today. And, while the mystery remains thousands flock every year to visit this incredible wonder of the Neolithic and bronze age.

Stonehenge is owned by the crown, but. the land around Stonehenge is owned by the National Trust. Management of Stonehenge is handled by the English Heritage. Millions of tourists every year visit Stonehenge.

Stonehenge is without a doubt the most famous of Britain’s stone circles but it is by no means the only one. Over 1000 different stone circles are known to exist in Britain and other parts of Western Europe. Avebury, Arbor Low, Long Meg and her Daughters are among the more well known circles.

Stonehenge was constructed during the Neolithic and bronze age. Continue reading

Alcatraz Trivia

Alcatraz, is one of the most infamous prisons in the history of the USA. Its name alone, provokes images of small cells, prisoners in striped uniforms and horrific conditions. It is said that the percentage of prisoners that went crazy while being held on Alcatraz was higher than in any other prison in the States. While it was operating Alcatraz became the home of some of the most infamous criminals in the US. Today, Alcatraz is part of the Golden Gate National Recreation Area and has over 1.4 million visitors every year.

Alcatraz Island was discovered by Juan Manuel de Ayala in 1775. Juan was a Spaniard, who was charting the coast of North America. It was he who named the island La Isla De Los Alcatraz.

La Isla de los Alcatraz translates to mean “Island of the Pelican”. The island is home to more than 100 different kinds of birds, among its residents are the endangered Brown Pelican and the Peregrine Falcon.

Other interesting trivia facts about Alcatraz:

– Prisoners were not executed on Alcatraz. State executions were carried out in San Quentin.

– Alcatraz is located in San Francisco Bay. The island is about 22 acres in size and has no water source of its own. Aside from its vast bird population, the only other animal residents on the island are salamanders, slugs and deer mice.

– Alcatraz is home to the first light house on the West coast of the USA. The lighthouse which was completed in 1854 stands 166 feet tall. To warn ships of the danger, a heavy bell was added to the lighthouse which was struck by a mechanical hammer every ten seconds. Continue reading