by Staff Monkeys
Police have always been able to spot your car’s license plate and check it against a database. That didn’t seem so threatening. But because it was a hassle to check a plate, police didn’t do it unless there was a reason to. Now, though, they’re doing it routinely and in an automated way. License plate scanners can read 60 plates per second — and in more and more places, police are checking every single plate. In other words, they know where you are. Privacy advocates see a problem. Police don’t.
- If you want to feel slim by comparison to other people, Mississippi might be the best place for you to live. The Magnolia state has the highest percentage of obese people in the country, according to federal statistics based on self-reported data. States in the South and Midwest were the chubbiest, and western states were typically the slimmest — unless they were lying with their self-assessment, of course.
- Cigarette makers in Australia have lost a battle to keep their branding on their packages. The government has won the right to force the tobacco companies to sell their products in plain olive wrappers covered with large health warnings. We have no sympathy for the Marlboro man, but we do believe in people’s right to make those decisions for themselves.
- If you like travel and you like photography, you might really like some of the images from winners of the National Geographic Travel Photo Contest for this year. We didn’t see any monkeys, but the pictures are still nice.
- If you’ve ever spent much time with dogs, you know they instinctively shake their fur when they’re wet. Now science has weighed in on this matter and determined that canines can shake off 70 percent of the water on them within a mere four seconds. How does it work? We’re glad you asked.
- Everybody knows that one of the most common lines from Star Trek was, “Beam me up, Scotty.” Right? The only problem is that it isn’t so. The line was never once used in any episode, but it’s deeply ingrained in public consciousness as having been used. Why do misattributed or fractured quotes of this kind catch on?