Significant Number Factoid Friday – Today Number Forty 40

“Fight Against Stupidity And Bureaucracy”

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The factoid number for this Friday is forty. As usual there is more associated with it than you might think. Whatever your interest you will probably find something in here that you didn’t know about the number forty.

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The Number Forty 40

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40

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In religion

40 is probably the most frequently used number in the Bible and corresponds to many major events. For example,

  • During the great flood it rained for forty days and forty nights [Genesis 7:4, 12, 17,8:6].
  • Isaac was forty years of age when he married Rebekah [Genesis 25:20].
  • Moses’ life is divided into three 40-year segments, separated by his fleeing from Egypt, and his return to lead his people out.
  • Moses spent three consecutive periods of “forty days and forty nights” on Mount Sinai; during the forty days during which he received the Law of the Sinai Covenant [Exodus 24:18], the children of Israel were tested [Exodus 32:1].
  • The Hebrew people lived in the Sinai desert for “forty years”. This period of years represents the time it takes for a new generation to arise.
  • Forty days after his birth a male child of Israel was dedicated to God at the Sanctuary [Leviticus 12:1-4].
  • The Israelite spies reconnoitered the land of Canaan for forty days [Numbers 13:25]; and Caleb was forty years of age when Moses sent him to reconnoiter Canaan [Joshua 14:7].
  • There were forty year intervals of peace in the age of the Judges (Judges 3:11; 5:31; 8:28)
  • There were forty years of war between Israel and the Philistines.
  • Several Jewish leaders and kings are said to have ruled for “forty years”, that is, a generation. (Examples: Eli, Saul, David, Solomon.)
  • Goliath challenged the Israelites twice a day for forty days before David defeated him.
  • 40 lashes is one of the punishments meted out by the Sanhedrin, though in actual practice only 39 lashes were administered.
  • Jesus fasted in the wilderness for forty days before His temptation [Matthew 4:2; Mark 1:13; Luke 4:2].
  • Jesus taught His disciples for forty days after the Resurrection. On the fortieth day He ascended to the Father [Acts 1:3].
  • In modern Christian practice, Lent consists of the 40 days preceding Easter. In much of Western Christianity, Sundays are excluded from the count; in Eastern Christianity, Sundays are included.

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  • In Islamic belief Muhammad was forty years old when he first received the revelation delivered by the archangel Gabriel.
  • Masih ad-Dajjal roams around the Earth in forty days, a period of time that can be as many as forty months, forty years, and so on.
  • The Quran says that a person is only fully grown when they reach the age of 40.

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  • Some Russians believe that ghosts of the dead linger at the site of their death for forty days.

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  • In Hinduism, some popular religious prayers consist of forty shlokas or dohas (couplets, stanzas). The most common being the Hanuman Chalisa (chaalis is the Hindi term for 40).
  • In Hindu system some of the popular fasting period consist 40 days and is called the period One ‘Mandl kal’ Kal means a period and Mandal kal means a period of 40 days. For example the devotees of ‘Swami Ayyappa’, the name of a Hindu God very popular in Kerala, India ( Sabarimala Swami Ayyappan ) strictly observed forty days fasting and visit ( Only male devotees are permitted to enter into the God’s Temple) with their holy submittance or offerings on 41st or a convenient day after a minimum 40 days practice of fasting. The offering is called ‘Kanikka’.

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In science

  • Forty is the atomic number of zirconium.
  • Negative forty is the unique temperature at which the Fahrenheit and Celsius scales correspond; that is, -40°F=-40°C. It is referred to as either “minus forty” or “forty below”.
Negative forty  -40°F=-40°C
Negative forty -40°F=-40°C

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In space

  • The planet Venus forms a pentagram in the night sky every eight years with it returning to its original point every 40 years with a 40 day regression (some scholars believe that this ancient information was the basis for the number 40 becoming sacred to Jews, Christians, and Muslims).
planet venus
planet Venus

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  • Messier object M40, is a magnitude 9.0 double star in the constellation Ursa Major
Messier Object M40
Messier Object M40

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  • STS-40
  • Although designated STS-40, this was in fact the 41st flight of the Space Shuttle and the 11th flight of Columbia. Its mission was to conduct the Spacelab Life Sciences (SLS-1) experiments, the first spacelab dedicated to life sciences research. This included experiments that explored how the heart, blood vessels, lungs, kidneys and hormone-secreting glands respond to microgravity, the causes of space sickness and changes in muscles, bones and cells during the microgravity environment of space flight and in the readjustment to gravity upon returning to Earth.
  • Launch took place on June 5, 1991, 9:24:51 a.m. EDT. It was originally set for May 22,1991, but postponed less than 48 hours before launch when it became known that a leaking liquid hydrogen transducer in orbiter main propulsion system which was removed and replaced during a leak testing in 1990, had failed an analysis by vendor. Engineers feared that one or more of the nine liquid hydrogen and liquid oxygen transducer protruding into fuel and oxidizer lines could break off and be ingested by the engine turbopumps, causing engine failure.
  • In addition, one of orbiter five general purpose computers failed completely, along with one of the multiplexer demultiplexers that control orbiter hydraulics ordinance and orbiter maneuvering system / reaction control system functions in aft compartment.
  • New general purpose computer and multiplexer demultiplexer were installed and tested. One liquid hydrogen and two liquid oxygen transducers were replaced upstream in propellant flow system near 17-inch disconnect area, which is protected by internal screen. Three liquid oxygen transducers replaced at engine manifold area, while three liquid hydrogen transducers here were removed and openings plugged. Launch reset for 8 a.m. EDT, June 1, but postponed again after several attempts to calibrate inertial measurement unit 2 failed. Unit was replaced and retested, and launch was rescheduled for June 5. Launch Weight: 251,970 lbs.
  • The Commander STS-40 was Marine Corps Col. Bryan D. O’Connor. Other crew, Air Force Lt. Col. Sidney M. Gutierrez (Pilot), James P. Bagian, M.D.; Tamara E. Jernigan, Ph.D.; and Margaret Rhea Seddon, M.D. The payload specialists, Francis Andrew Gaffney, M.D., and Millie Hughes-Fulford, Ph.D.

sts-40-patch

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In politics

  • South Dakota ranks 16th in size among the 50 states. It was the 40th state to join the Union in 1889. South Dakota encompasses 77,123 square miles, averaging 10 people per square mile.
South Dakota State flag
South Dakota State flag
  • Ronald Reagan, former actor and Governor of California (1967-75) was the fortieth President of the United States of America, from January 20, 1981 to January 20, 1989. His Vice President was George H. W. Bush.
Ronald Reagan 40th President of the United States of America
Ronald Reagan 40th President of the United States of America
  • Reagan’s Presidency was notable for at least two incidents.
  • On March 30, 1981, only 69 days into the new administration, Reagan, his press secretary James Brady, Washington police officer Thomas Delahanty, and Secret Service agent Timothy McCarthy were struck by gunfire from would-be assassin John Hinckley, Jr. outside the Washington Hilton Hotel. Although “close to death” during surgery, Reagan recovered and was released from the hospital on April 11, becoming the first serving U.S. President to survive being shot in an assassination attempt. The attempt had great influence on Reagan’s popularity; polls indicated his approval rating to be around 73%. Reagan believed that God had spared his life so that he might go on to fulfill a greater purpose.
  • A couple of videos, the first rather long but interesting in that it shows the live story of the assassination attempt developing, and the second President Reagan recounting the assassination attempt from his personal perspective.

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  • Another controversial incident involving President Reagan happened in summer of 1981 when PATCO, the union of federal air traffic controllers, went on strike, violating a federal law prohibiting government unions from striking. Reagan declared the situation an emergency as described in the 1947 Taft–Hartley Act, and stated that if the air traffic controllers “do not report for work within 48 hours, they have forfeited their jobs and will be terminated”. They did not return and on August 5, Reagan fired 11,345 striking air traffic controllers who had ignored his order, and used supervisors and military controllers to handle the nation’s commercial air traffic until new controllers could be hired and trained. As a leading reference work on public administration concluded, “The firing of PATCO employees not only demonstrated a clear resolve by the president to take control of the bureaucracy, but it also sent a clear message to the private sector that unions no longer needed to be feared.”

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In sport

  • In football (soccer), forty is generally considered to be the number of points that a Premier League team (or, by extension, a team in any 20-team league with a standard home-and-away season) needs to avoid relegation.
  • In baseball, each team in Major League Baseball is allowed to have 40 players under major-league contracts at any given time (not including players on the 60-day disabled list). From September 1 to the end of the regular season, teams are allowed to expand their game-day rosters to include the entire 40-man roster.
  • In tennis, the number 40 represents the third point gained in a game. A score of 40-40 (three points each) is called “deuce”, at which time a player must score two consecutive points to win the game.

deuce

  • Beginning with the 2013 season, forty cars will run each race in NASCAR’s second-level Nationwide Series.
  • The jersey number 40 has been retired by several North American sports teams in honor of past playing greats or other key figures:
  • In Major League Baseball: the Houston Astros, for Don Wilson; the Pittsburgh Pirates, for Danny Murtaugh, most noted as the team’s longtime manager.

Danny Murtaugh

  • In the NBA: the Denver Nuggets, for Byron Beck; the Detroit Pistons, for Bill Laimbeer.
Byron Beck
Byron Beck
  • In the NFL: the Arizona Cardinals, for Pat Tillman; the Chicago Bears, for Hall of Famer Gale Sayers; the New England Patriots, for Hall of Famer Mike Haynes; the New York Giants, for Joe Morrison; the Philadelphia Eagles, for Tom Brookshier.
Gale Sayers
Gale Sayers

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In militaria

  • Curtiss P-40 Warhawk
  • Manufactured by Curtiss-Wright Corporation of Buffalo, New York and designed by Donovan Berlin, the Curtiss P-40 Warhawk’s first flight was on 14 October 1938. Over 13,700 were built and during its twenty year life it was used by the United States Army Air Forces, the Royal Air Force, Royal Australian Air Force, Royal Canadian Air Force, Royal New Zealand Air Force, and many others. A single-engine, single-seat, all-metal fighter and ground attack aircraft, it was used extensively by most Allied powers during World War II, and remained in front line service until the end of the war.
  • The British Commonwealth and Soviet air forces used the name Tomahawk for models equivalent to the P-40B and P-40C, and the name Kittyhawk for models equivalent to the P-40D and all later variants.
Curtiss P-40E Warhawk USAF
Curtiss P-40E Warhawk USAF

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  • PPD40
  • The PPD (Pistolet-Pulemyot Degtyarova) was developed by famous Russian small arms designer Fedor Degtyarov. It was formally adopted by the Red Army in 1935 and entered limited production as the PPD-34. Made in small numbers, it was mostly relegated for NKVD use, mostly for border guards. Slightly modified in 1938, it was then produced until 1939 in PPD-34/38 variation, with newly developed 71 rounds drum with long neck.
  • After the Winter War experience (1940 war between USSR and Finland), new version of PPD has been rapidly developed, with the most visible change being the two-part stock, cut to accept new pattern of drums, which had no neck. This became the PPD-40.
  • After the outbreak of the Great Patriotic Warin 1941, it was soon been discovered that the PPD-40 is less than ideal for wartime production, so it was quickly replaced by the more efficient and inexpensive PPSh-41, which appeared in great numbers and was widely used by Red Army.
Pistolet-Pulemyot Degtyarova PPD40
Pistolet-Pulemyot Degtyarova PPD40

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  • MP40
  • One of the most famous submachine gun designs in history, the M.P. 38 submachine gun started its life under requirements from German Heereswaffenamt (HWA, Army Weapons Office), which saw the need for a compact submachine gun, suitable for use by armored vehicles crews and paratroopers.
  • German arms-making company Erfurter Maschinenfabrik Gmbh, better known under its trade name Erma, began the development of a new weapon under HWA specifications. It was manufactured for just 2 years, when it was replaced in production by externally similar, but less expensive MP-40, which used more stamped parts instead of machined parts, found in MP-38.
  • There also were minor variations in design of MP-38, such as shape of cocking handle etc. MP-40 was also produced in a number of variations, which differed in shape of certain parts; also, toward the end of the war, several production shortcuts were introduced to save the costs of manufacturing. probably the most interesting variation of the MP-40 were the MP-40-II and MP-40-II. These guns featured dual magazine housings which hold two magazines in a laterally sliding bracket. This increase the total ammunition capacity “in the gun” to 64 rounds, in a desperate attempt to catch up with 71-round magazine capacity of Soviet PPSh-41. The later variant, MP-40-II, was made in limited numbers, but turned out to be a failure – sliding dual-magazine housing was a constant source of jams and failures, and was very sensitive to dirt and fouling.
  • Nevertheless, the MP-40 submachine guns were of good design, and set the pattern for so called “second generation” of submachine guns (“first generation” being represented by the wood-stocked and carefully machined MP-18, MP-28 and the like). The second generation weapons usually were of compact design, and made using mostly steel stampings and pressings, or castings.
  • Many MP-40 that survived the WW2, continued to serve up until late 1970s or early 1980s, in few European armies such as Austrian or Norwegian.

MP-40

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  • Taurus MP40
  • During the 1990s Taurus replaced in production its MT-12A submachine gun (licensed copy of the Beretta PM-12) with another foreign design, this time purchased from Chile.
  • Originally known as the FAMAE SAF, in Brazil it is made in a slightly modified form as the Taurus MT-9 (in 9mm Luger) and MT-40 (in .40SW, especially for the Brazilian police forces that favor this caliber). In this case, the MT index stands for Metralhadora Taurus – Taurus Submachine gun, and the digits denote a caliber.
  • Taurus also makes an interesting offshoot of the MT-40, the CT-40 semi-automatic carbine, which is also intended for police and security use but is restricted to semi-automatic fire and has somewhat longer barrel.

Taurus MP40

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  • SVT-40
  • The SVT-38 (Samozaryadnaya Vintovka Tokareva – Tokarev Self-loading rifle) was originally adopted in the 1938 after more than 20 years of the research and development, done by famous Russian arms designer Fedor Tokarev. 
  • This rifle was made in relatively large numbers (more than 1 million made prior to 1945), and was originally issued as a standard infantry rifle, replacing the obsolete Mosin-Nagant M1891/30 bolt action rifles. A few SVT-40 were also manufactured in the sniper variant, (only about 50 000) equipped with scope mounts and telescopic sights, but accuracy was not sufficient. 
  • The SVT-40 had a somewhat controversial reputation. It was highly regarded by the enemies (Finns and Germans) and it was a very sought-after war trophy, re-issued to both German and Finnish troops. On the other hand, it was often considered unreliable and over-complicated by the Soviet troops (when comparing with old Mosin-Nagant rifles), but it was more to the poor training and maintenance, than to the rifle itself. Some better trained and educated Soviet troops, such as Sea Infantry (Marines, which always were some kind of elite in the Soviet army) used the SVT-40 with great deal of success.

SVT40

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  • Husqvarna M/40
  • The ‘Luger-like’ L-35 pistol was developed by the Finnish designer Aimo Lahti and manufactured by Finnish company VKT from 1935 until 1985 or so. It was adopted as a standard sidearm for Finnish army in 1935. 
  • In 1940, Sweden purchased a license for Lahti pistol, simplified it and began production as a Husqvarna M/40 pistol. Due to simplification and poor quality of steel used in M/40, these guns tended to crack when fired 9mm “submachinegun” ammunition, and also M/40 were less reliable than original L-35s, so in the 1980s almost all M/40s were recalled from military service and replaced by older m/07 pistol (licensed Browning M1903 pistols) as an emergency feature.

Husqvarna M40

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  • HK-UMP40
  • The UMP (Universal Machinen-Pistole = Universal Submachine Gun) had been developed by the Heckler & Koch company of Germany in the mid- to late- 1990s and first appeared on the markets in 1999. The key idea behind the UMP was to create a lightweight and powerful submachine gun, that was also cheaper than one of the H&K’s flagships, the MP-5. UMP, being targeted primary for USA law enforcement market, first appeared in .45ACP and .40SW chamberings, and later – in 9mm. 
  • The UMP is a blowback-operated select-fire submachine gun, being fired from the closed bolt. The receiver is made from the polymer, the controls are fully ambidextrous. UMP can be fired in full-auto, in single shots, and in 2 or 3 round bursts (optional). UMP also has bolt hold-open device, which traps the bolt in the open position when the last round from magazine had been fired. UMP has side-folding buttstock and two set of picatinny rails – one on the top of the receiver, and the other – on the forend. These rails can accept wide variety of sighting and other equipment, such as red-dot sights, laser pointers, tactical grips and flashlights. The barrel has quick mount for snap-on silencer.
Heckler & Koch Universal Machinen-Pistole
Heckler & Koch Universal Machinen-Pistole

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In books, music and movies

  • Forty Shades of Green is a visual term for rural Ireland, Johnny Cash popularised it with his 1961 song of the name.
  • “40” is a 1983 song by U2 from their album War
  • “40′” is the title of a song by Franz Ferdinand
  • The American-Japanese rock band Crush 40 from Sega’s Sonic the Hedgehog video game series with Hardline vocalist Johnny Gioeli and guitarist Jun Senoue
  • Canadian hip-hop producer Noah Shebib is known as “40”.
  • A well known radio program is the American Top 40
  • Rick Dees hosts a Weekly Top 40 radio program
  • The best known story from a Thousand and One Nights is Ali Baba and the Forty Thieves which has been made in movie and cartoon versions

ali baba and the forty thieves

  • Movies with ’40’ in their titles include 
  • “40 Carats”, about a forty year old woman who was vacationing in Greece
  • “40 Days and Nights”, a modern take on a Noah’s Ark tale
  • “The 40 Year Old Virgin”, a comedy about, well, a 40 year old virgin

The 40 Year Old Virgin

  • “This is 40”, a sequel to the 2007 movie ‘Knocked Up’ about at the lives of characters Pete and Debbie a few years on. 

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Other stuff

  • The expression “forty winks”, meaning a short sleep
  • There is the famous Saying “Life begins at forty”
  • Forty years of marriage is a ruby wedding anniversary
  • The international direct dial phone code for Romania is 40
  • The number of weeks for an average term of pregnancy, counting from the woman’s last menstrual period is forty.
  • There is an Arabic proverb that says, ‘To understand a people, you must live among them for 40 days.’
  • A regular work week in some western countries consists of forty hours.
  • There are forty spaces in a standard Monopoly game board

monopoly board

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And finally,

Last, but definitely not least, perhaps one of the greatest ever inventions also carries the ’40’ tag. It is WD-40.

WD-40 is the trademark name of a penetrating oil and water-displacing spray, developed in 1953 by Norm Larsen, founder of the Rocket Chemical Company, in San Diego, California.

The term ‘WD-40’, is an abbreviation of the phrase “Water Displacement, 40th formula”.

Larsen was attempting to create a formula to prevent corrosion in nuclear missiles, by displacing the standing water that causes it. He claims he arrived at a successful formula, which is primarily composed of various hydrocarbons, on his 40th attempt.

WD-40 was first used by Convair to protect the outer skin, and more importantly, the paper thin “balloon tanks” of the Atlas missile from rust and corrosion.

WD-40 first became commercially available on store shelves in San Diego in 1958

WD40 product range
The WD40 product range

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Significant Number Factoid Friday – Today Number Eleven 11

“Fight Against Stupidity And Bureaucracy”

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The number for today’s Friday Factoid is eleven. If this is your lucky number, date of birth or if you are just interested in random facts, now is your chance to find out some things you probably didn’t know about the number eleven.

Enjoy!

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The Number Eleven 11

11

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In religion

  • The word “apple” is cited 11 times in the Bible, all in the Old Testament.
  • Moses was instructed to make curtains of goats’ hair to be a covering upon the tabernacle: “eleven curtains shalt thou make.” ( Exodus 26.7)
  • 11 apostles remained with Jesus after the treason and suicide of Apostle Judas:
  • After Judas Iscariot was disgraced, the remaining apostles of Jesus were sometimes described as “the Eleven”; this occurred even after Matthias was added to bring the number to 12, as in Acts 2:14.
  • Jesus’ parable of the vineyard laborers: And about the eleventh hour he went out, and found others standing idle, and says unto them, Why stand you here all the day idle? (Matthew 20.6)
  • 11th Book of Enoch describes the Messianic Kingdom. 
  • 11th Station of the Cross: Crucifixion of Jesus (14 Stations of the Cross, Via Dolorosa)
  • 11 is a spiritually significant number in Thelema.

 

 

In mathematics

  • If a number is divisible by 11, reversing its digits will result in another multiple of 11.
  • As long as no two adjacent digits of a number added together exceed 9, then multiplying the number by 11, reversing the digits of the product, and dividing that new number by 11, will yield a number that is the reverse of the original number. (For example: 142,312 x 11 = 1,565,432. 2,345,651 / 11 = 213,241.)
  • An 11-sided polygon is called a hendecagon or undecagon.

 hendecagon 11 sides

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In computing

  • In Mozilla Firefox, Opera, Konqueror for KDE, Google Chrome and Internet Explorer for Windows, the function key F11 key toggles full screen viewing mode. In Mac OS X, F11 hides all open windows.
  • The windowing system for Unix computers is known as X11.
  • Computers of the PDP-11 series from Digital Equipment Corporation were informally referred to as “elevens”.

 

cpu room with DEC PDP-11
cpu room with DEC PDP-11

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In science

  • 11 is the atomic number of sodium.
  • 11 is the Atomic Weight of Boron, a black and semi-metallic element, chemically closer to silicon than to aluminium.
  • In modern string theory physics, 11 dimensions are proposed to exist in the universe.

 modern string theory physics

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In space

  • Apollo 11 was the first manned spacecraft to land on the Moon.

Apollo 11 insignia

  • The approximate periodicity of a sunspot cycle is 11 years.
  • Messier object M11, a magnitude 7.0 open cluster in the constellation Scutum, also known as the Wild Duck Cluster.
Messier object M11 - Wild Duck Cluster
Messier object M11 – Wild Duck Cluster
  • The New General Catalogue object NGC 11, a spiral galaxy in the constellation Andromeda
  • The 11th moon of Jupiter is Himalia.

 

himalia, the 11th Moon of Jupiter
Himalia, the 11th Moon of Jupiter

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In politics

  • 11th State to enter the Union is New York (July 26, 1788)
  • The 11th President of the United States is James Polk (1795-1849) who served (1845-1849).
James Polk 11th President of the United States of America
James Polk 11th President of the United States of America
  • Polk was on the 11¢ stamp issued on September 8, 1938 in the Presidential Series.
  • 11¢ stamps of the United States have also featured Presidents, Benjamin Franklin (issued Aug. 9, 1915) and Rutherford B. Hayes (issued Oct. 4, 1922)

 

11 cent stamps, Franklin, Polk, Hayes
11 cent stamps, Franklin, Polk, Hayes

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In Canada

  • The stylized maple leaf on the Flag of Canada has 11 points.

Flag of Canada

  • The Canadian one-dollar coin is a hendecagon, an 11-sided polygon.
Canadian one-dollar coin
Canadian one-dollar coin
  • Clocks depicted on Canadian currency, for example the Canadian fifty-dollar bill, show 11:00.
Canadian fifty-dollar bill
Canadian fifty-dollar bill showing clock
  • Eleven denominations of Canadian currency are produced in large quantities.
  • Due to Canada’s federal nature, eleven legally distinct Crowns effectively exist in the country, with the Monarch being represented separately in each province, as well as at the federal level.

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In sport

  • There are 11 players on a soccer team on the field at a time as well as in a cricket team.
  • Also in soccer, a penalty kick is referred to as “Elfmeter” because the penalty spot is approximately 11m (precisely 12 yards) from the goal line.
  • Historically, in the Pyramid formation that position names are taken from, a left wing-forward in football wears number 11. In the modern game, especially using the 4-4-2 formation, it is worn by a left-sided midfielder. Less commonly a striker will wear the shirt.
  • There are 11 players in a field hockey team. The player wearing 11 will usually play on the left-hand side, as in soccer.
  • An American football team also has 11 players on the field at one time during play. 11 is also worn by quarterbacks, kickers, punter and wide receivers in American football’s NFL.
  • In rugby union, the starting left wing wears the 11 shirt.
  • In cricket, the 11th batsman is usually the weakest batsman, at the end of the tail. He is primarily in the team for his bowling abilities.
  • The jersey number 11 has been retired by several North American sports teams in honor of past playing greats or other key figures:
  • In Major League Baseball: the Chicago White Sox, for Hall of Famer Luis Aparicio ( 2010 and 2011, Aparicio allowed fellow Venezuelan Omar Vizquel to wear the number); the Cincinnati Reds, for Hall of Famer Barry Larkin; the Detroit Tigers, for Hall of Fame manager Sparky Anderson; the Los Angeles Angels of Anaheim, for Jim Fregosi (who played for the team in its former incarnations as the Los Angeles Angels and California Angels, and also managed the California Angels); the Pittsburgh Pirates, for Hall of Famer Paul Waner; the San Francisco Giants, for Hall of Famer Carl Hubbell (honoring the number’s retirement when the team was known as the New York Giants); the Seattle Mariners have yet to retire any numbers, but have not issued #11 since the retirement of Edgar Martínez at the end of the 2004 season.
Baseball Hall of Fame Cincinnati Reds
Baseball Hall of Fame Cincinnati Reds
  • In the NBA: the Detroit Pistons, for Hall of Famer Isiah Thomas; the Sacramento Kings, for Hall of Famer Bob Davies (honoring the number’s retirement when the team was known as the Rochester Royals); the Washington Wizards, for Hall of Famer Elvin Hayes (who played for the team in its past incarnations as the Baltimore, Capital, and Washington Bullets);
Elvin Hayes
Elvin Hayes
  • In the NFL: the New York Giants, for Phil Simms.
  • In the NHL: the Buffalo Sabres, for Hall of Famer Gilbert Perreault; the Edmonton Oilers and New York Rangers, for Hall of Famer Mark Messier; the St. Louis Blues, for Brian Sutter; the Washington Capitals, for Hall of Famer Mike Gartner.

 

Oilers and New York Rangers, for Hall of Famer Mark Messier
Oilers and New York Rangers, for Hall of Famer Mark Messier

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In militaria

  • World War I ended with an Armistice on November 11, 1918, which went into effect at 11:00 am, the 11th hour on the 11th day of the 11th month of the year. Armistice Day is still observed on November 11 of each year, although it is now called Veterans Day in the United States and Remembrance Day in the Commonwealth of Nations and parts of Europe.

Armistice Day

  • 11 is the number of guns in a gun salute to U.S. Army, Air Force and Marine Corps Brigadier Generals, and to Navy and Coast Guard Rear Admirals Lower Half.
  • 11 is the number of General Orders for Sentries in the Marine Corps and United States Navy.

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  • USN F11F Tiger
  • The Grumman F11F/F-11 Tiger was a single-seat carrier-based United States Navy fighter aircraft in operation during the 1950s and 1960s. Originally designated the F11F Tiger in April 1955 under the pre-1962 Navy designation system, it was redesignated as F-11 Tiger under the 1962 United States Tri-Service aircraft designation system.
  • The F11F/F-11 was used by the Blue Angels flight team from 1957 to 1969. Grumman Aircraft Corporation made about 200 Tigers, with last delivered 23 January 1
The Grumman F11F/F-11 Tiger
The Grumman F11F/F-11 Tiger

 

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  • J-11 Chinese Light Fighter Aircraft
  • The J-11 designation was originally applied in the design Shenyang Aircraft Factory in response to a 1968 requirement for a replacement PLAAF J-6 (MiG-19 Farmer). Shenyang’s proposal was triggered by a British Spey 512 afterburning turbofan engine and followed a conventional light fighter design, with wings swept back and side of the fuselage assembly entries.
  • The J-11 was a sophisticated design for its time, but the British Spey-512 engines proved “difficult” for Communist China to obtain at that time. Shenyang factory was ordered to concentrate their energies in the J-8, and J-11 never went beyond the planning stage.

 

J-11 Chinese Light Fighter Aircraft
J-11 Chinese Light Fighter Aircraft

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  • The B-11 Gun
  • The B-11 gun is designed by the Design Bureau under guidance of B.I. Shavyrin. Its barrel consists of a smooth-bore tube, chamber, breech and breech mechanism. It is fixed on a tripod mount consisting of frame and boom. In firing position, the gun rests on the tripod mount and the wheels are elevated above ground level. The gun is transported by means of a prime-mover.
  • The gun can be transported in a truck body together with crew and ammo load. The gun can be also dropped by parachute.

 

BZO (Recoillessgun) B-11

  • Colt 1911
  • Designed by John Browning, the M1911 Colt is arguably the most well known pistol in the world. It is a single-action, semi-automatic, magazine-fed, recoil-operated handgun chambered for the .45 ACP cartridge. It  served as the standard-issue side arm for the United States armed forces from 1911 to 1985 and was widely used in World War I, World War II, the Korean War, and the Vietnam War.
  • The M1911 is still carried by some U.S. forces. Its formal designation as of 1940 was Automatic Pistol, Caliber .45, M1911 for the original Model of 1911 or Automatic Pistol, Caliber .45, M1911A1 for the M1911A1, adopted in 1924.
  • In total, the United States procured around 2.7 million M1911 and M1911A1 pistols in military contracts during its service life. The M1911 was replaced by the M9 pistol as the standard U.S. sidearm in the early 1990s, but due to its popularity among users, it has not been completely phased out. Modern M1911 variants are still in use by some units within the U.S. Navy and U.S. Marine Corps.
  • Many military and law enforcement organizations in the United States and other countries continue to use (often modified) M1911A1 pistols including Marine Corps Special Operations Command, Los Angeles Police Department S.W.A.T. and L.A.P.D. S.I.S., the FBI Hostage Rescue Team, F.B.I. regional S.W.A.T. teams, and 1st Special Forces Operational Detachment—Delta (Delta Force). The Tacoma, Washington Police Department selected the Kimber Pro Carry II or Pro Carry II HD as optional, department supplied weapons available to its officers
Colt 1911
Colt 1911

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  • Sig Sauer M11-A1
  • Two of the most watched shows on television are NCIS and NCIS: Los Angeles. The 2nd spinoff show, NCIS: LA features covert NCIS agents based out of Los Angeles investigating things that have nothing to do with NCIS and regularly getting into gunfights and leaving bodies all over LA. And each week, they’re correctly depicted using the Sig Sauer M11, the standard issue pistol for NCIS, Army CID, and a number of other special units of the US military.
  • The Sig Sauer M11-A1 is a commercially available version of the military sidearm; upgrading the slide to stainless steel and adding Sig’s excellent Short Reset Trigger. The Sig M11-A1 comes standard with three 15-round magazines, and SigLite night sights.

 

Sig Sauer M11-A1
Sig Sauer M11-A1

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  • Smith & Wesson Model 11 .38 Pistol
  • The American Smith & Wesson .38 Model 11 Revolver was supplied to British Commonwealth countries 1950s – 1970s for Police use. A standard 6-shot hand ejector with 4” barrel, ‘Mod 11’ marking and flared chequered walnut grips.
Smith-and-Wesson-Model-11
Smith-and-Wesson-Model-11

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  • In music, movies and television
  • The interval of an octave and a fourth is an 11th.
  • A complete 11th chord has almost every note of a diatonic scale.
  • The number of thumb keys on a bassoon, not counting the whisper key. (A few bassoons have a 12th thumb key.)
  • In Igor Stravinsky’s The Rite of Spring, there are 11 consecutive repetitions of the same chord.
  • In Tool’s song Jimmy, and in Negativland’s song Time Zones the number 11 is heard numerous times in the lyrics.
  • “Eleven pipers piping” is the gift on the 11th day of Christmas in the carol “The Twelve Days of Christmas”
  • The Eleven is a song by The Grateful Dead.
  • Eleven Records is the record label of Jason Webley, and many of Webley’s works feature the number 11.
  • Three films, Ben-Hur (1959), Titanic (1997), and The Lord of the Rings: The Return of the King (2003), have each won 11 Academy Awards, including Best Picture of their respective years.
ben hur action shot
ben hur action shot
  • Ocean’s Eleven is the name of two American films.
  • The Eleventh Commandment is a feature length film by Allied Pictures Corp. (1933) adapted from the story The Pillory by Brandon Fleming.
  • The Eleventh Commandment (1962) is a science fiction novel by Lester del Rey (USA). In a heavily overpopulated future, the Roman Catholic Church continues to encourage people to be fruitful and multiply. But there is a scientific reason behind this apparent madness.
  • The number of incarnations of The Doctor in BBC sci-fi series Doctor Who is 11, as of 2012. (William Hartnell; Patrick Troughton; Jon Pertwee; Tom Baker; Peter Davison; Colin Baker; Sylvester McCoy; Paul McGann; Christopher Eccleston; David Tennant and Matt Smith)
The 11 actors who have played 'The Doctor'
The 11 actors who have played ‘The Doctor’

 

 

 

Other stuff

  • Cities located at 11o longitude: Munich, Germany; Monrovia, Liberia
  • Cities located at 11o latitude: Phnom Penh, Cambodia; Baranquilla, Colombia
  • The eleventh hour means the last possible moment to take care of something, and often implies a situation of urgent danger or emergency (see Doomsday clock).
  • 11 days were lost when the British imposed the Gregorian calendar in 1752, decreeing that the day following September 2 be called September 14.
  • “Elevenses” is a tea or coffee taken at midmorning and often accompanied by a snack (British custom).
  • The number 11 bus is a low-cost way of sightseeing in London
  • In the game of blackjack, an Ace can be counted as either one or 11, whichever is more advantageous for the player.

BlackJack

  • 11 is the number of the French department Aude.
  • 11 is the channel assignment of GMA News TV in the Philippines (formerly ZOE-TV 11). Both owned by ZOE Broadcasting Network and GMA Network.
  • The Roman numeral for 11 is XI.
  • Steel wedding anniversary celebrates 11 years of marriage.
  • K is the 11th letter of the English alphabet .
  • Kaph is the 11th letter of the Hebrew alphabet, and means “grasping hand”, with a numeric value of 20.
  • Lambda is the 11th letter of the Greek alphabet, meaning service, with numeric value of 30
  • In Astrology, Aquarius is the 11th astrological sign of the Zodiac.
  • The dog is the 11th sign of the Chinese Animal Zodiac based on the lunar year. Dog-year people are honest, intelligent, and straightforward, with a deep sense of loyalty and justice. The previous dog year was Feb. 10, 1994 to Jan. 30, 1995. The next lunar dog year is Jan. 29, 2006 to Feb. 17, 2007. People born in the dog year include Voltaire, Winston Churchill, Mother Teresa, Chou En-lai, Sophia Loren, Elvis Presley, and Bill Clinton.
  • The Cologne coat of arms depicts the two-headed Imperial eagle holding sword and sceptre. The escutcheon (shield) shows three crowns (relics of the Three Magi kept in the Cologne Cathedral). The 11 black flames stand for the Patron Saint Ursula protecting the 11,000 virgins. Hans Memling (1440-1494) painted “Saint Ursula and the Holy Virgins” (1489) on wood at Saint Ursula Shrine in Bruges. Memling reduced the 11,000 virgins to a more manageable 11.  
  • German Rhineland carnival season begins on 11.11 at 11:11 A.M. in Cologne.

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9 / 11

  • The twin towers of the World Trade Center in New York City looked like the number 11.
  • It was 110 stories tall, rising 1353 feet and was the tallest building in the world, until surpassed by Chicago’s Sears Tower (1450 feet).
  • WTC was built in 1966-1977 by Minoru Yamasaki.

World-Trade-Center

  • American Airlines Flight 11 was a passenger flight which was hijacked by five al-Qaeda terrorists on September 11, 2001, as part of the September 11 attacks. They deliberately crashed it into the North Tower of the World Trade Center in New York City, killing all 87 people aboard plus the hijackers, and an unconfirmed number in the building’s impact zone. The aircraft involved, a Boeing 767-223ER, was flying American Airlines’ daily scheduled morning transcontinental service from Logan International Airport, in Boston, Massachusetts, to Los Angeles International Airport, in Los Angeles, California.
  • The second aircraft, a United Airlines Flight 175, a Boeing 767–222, scheduled to fly from Logan International Airport, in Boston, Massachusetts, to Los Angeles International Airport, in Los Angeles, California, hit the South Tower at 09.03.

The Day That Changed America

9-11 world trade center second airplane

  • After the World Trade Center was demolished by terrorist attack on 9/11/2001, ceremonies were held on subsequent 9/11 dates near the site showing “Tribute in Light”— twin beams of light that resemble the number 11 projected to the sky.      

 world-trade-center-lights

 

 

 

=========================

Significant Number Factoid Friday – Today Number Forty-Four 44

“Fight Against Stupidity And Bureaucracy”

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Okay, this week’s significant number was either going to be 44 or 45, but, rightly or wrongly, the American people voted for Barack Obama and so the number is 44  –  hard luck Mitt.

So here we go, and just like President Obama we’re not sure exactly where.

Enjoy.

 .

44 Forty-four

 44

 

 

In politics

  • In the U.S. presidential election of 1944, Franklin D. Roosevelt won reelection over Republican challenger Thomas E. Dewey, becoming the only U.S. president elected to a fourth term.
Franklin Delano Roosevelt
Franklin Delano Roosevelt

 

  • A few days ago Barack Obama was elected to his second term as the 44th US President.
Barack Obama 44th President of the United States of America
Barack Obama 44th President of the United States of America

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In mathematics

  • 44 is a tribonacci number, a happy number, an octahedral number and a palindromic number.

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In science

  • 44 is the atomic number of ruthenium

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In space

  • STS-44 was the 44th Shuttle mission. It was cut short after one of its three navigational units failed.

 sts-44-patch

 

  • Messier object M44, also known as the Beehive Cluster, is a magnitude 4.0 open cluster in the constellation Cancer,
Messier object M44
Messier object M44

  

  • 44 is the Saros number of the solar eclipse series which began on April 30, 1448 BC and ended on June 7, 168 BC . The duration of Saros series 44 was 1280.1 years, and it contained 72 solar eclipses.
  • The Saros number of the lunar eclipse series which began on October 1, 1363 BC and ended on March 27, 153 . The duration of Saros series 44 was 1514.5 years, and it contained 85 lunar eclipses.

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In sport

  • 44 is the retired number for former baseball players Hank Aaron, Willie McCovey and Reggie Jackson; the number is sometimes considered to be a “hitter’s number”.

Hank Aaron

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  • In the NFL 44 was the number of Floyd Little (Denver Broncos) and Pete Retzlaff (Philadelphia Eagles)
Floyd Little
Floyd Little

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  • In the NBA 44 was the number of Dan Issel, (Denver Nuggets); Jerry West (L.A. Lakers); Paul Westphal (Phoenix Suns); Sam Lacey (Sacramento Kings); and George Gervin (San Antonio Spurs).
Dan Issel
Dan Issel

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  • A number of football legends at Syracuse University also wore 44, most notably by Jim Brown, Ernie Davis, Floyd Little, and Rob Konrad. Although the number was officially retired in 2005, the legend of 44 remains an important part of the identity of Syracuse University.

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In WWII

1944 was arguably the most interesting year of World War II. Incidents of note included:

 

  • The Fosse Ardeatine massacre in Rome when 335 Italians are killed, including 75 Jews and over 200 members of the Italian Resistance from various groups.

 

  • The real “Great Escape” (as opposed to the famous movie version) when 76 Royal Air Force prisoners escape by tunnel “Harry” from Stalag Luft III. Only three made it back to the UK, and of those recaptured, fifty were executed.

 

  • Exercise Tiger, or Operation Tiger, was the code name for one in a series of large-scale rehearsals for the D-Day invasion of Normandy, which took place on Slapton Sands or Slapton Beach in Devon.
  • The first practice assault took place on the morning of 27 April. H-hour was set for 7:30 am, and was to be preceded by a live firing exercise to acclimatize the troops to the sights, sounds and even smells of a naval bombardment. During the landing itself, live rounds were to be fired over the heads of the incoming troops by forces on land, for the same reason. This followed an order made by General Dwight D. Eisenhower, the Supreme Allied Commander, who felt that the men must be hardened by exposure to real battle conditions.
  • The British heavy cruiser HMS Hawkins was to shell the beach with live ammunition, from 6:30 to 7:00 am, giving the beachmasters half an hour to inspect the beach and declare it safe.
  • However, several of the landing ships for that morning were delayed, and the officer in charge decided to delay the bombardment until 8:30am. This message was received by HMS Hawkins, but not by a number of the landing craft, with the result that troops were landing on the beach at the same time as the bombardment was taking place. This unfortunate mix-up resulted in a “friendly fire” incident with 946 American servicemen losing their lives.
  • The incident was under the strictest secrecy at the time due to the impending invasion, and was only nominally reported afterward. As a result it has been a largely “forgotten” disaster of WWII.

Plaque commemorating those killed in Operation Tiger

 

  • On June 6 Operation Overlord, or the D-Day landings, took place, when 155,000 Allied troops shipped from England land on the beaches of Normandy in northern France.
  • It was the largest amphibious military operation in history and was the beginning of the liberation of France and the other countries in Europe invaded by Nazi Germany.
D-Day Landings
D-Day Landings

 

  • Also in 1944, on July 20 there was an unsuccessful assassination attempt on the life of Adolf Hitler led by Claus von Stauffenberg.
Führerhauptquartier, Stauffenberg, Hitler
Führerhauptquartier, Stauffenberg, Hitler

 

  • At the beginning of August 1944 the Warsaw Uprising began and lasted until October 2, when it was finally ended by Nazi troops.
Warsaw Uprising Symbol
Warsaw Uprising Symbol

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  • Also in August of that year, the Gestapo, acting on a tip off from a Dutch informer, sealed-off an area in an Amsterdam warehouse and captured Jewish diarist Anne Frank and her family.
  • They were placed on the last transport train from Westerbork to Auschwitz, and on October 30, Anne Frank and sister Margot Frank are deported from Auschwitz to the Bergen-Belsen concentration camp.
Anne Frank diary
Anne Frank diary

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In militaria

  • The .44 Remington Magnum or .44 Special are popular large-bore cartridge calibres. Originally designed for revolvers, a their introduction, they were quickly adopted for carbines and rifles as well.
44 calibre ammo
44 calibre ammo

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  • However many people mistakenly believe that the Smith & Wesson (S&W) .44 calibre revolver heavily featured in numerous Hollywood movies, particularly Clint Eastwood’s Dirty Harry is called the .44 Magnum (the most powerful handgun in the world), neither of which are true. The revolver used in those movies is actually the Smith & Wesson Model 29, a six-shot, double-action revolver chambered for the .44 Magnum cartridge. It comes in a variety of models with 3″, 4″, 5″, 6″, 6½”, 8″ and, later, 10″ barrel lengths.

Smith & Wesson Model 29

 

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  • StG 44
  • The StG 44 (Sturmgewehr 44) is an assault rifle developed in Nazi Germany during World War II that was the first of its kind to see major deployment and is considered by many historians to be the first modern assault rifle.
  • It is also known under the designations MP 43 and MP 44 (Maschinenpistole 43, Maschinenpistole 44 respectively).
Sturmgewehr StG44
Sturmgewehr StG44

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  • Pzf 44 
  • Panzerfaust 44 “Lanze” (or Pzf 44 in short) is an antitank weapon. Development of this weapon commenced circa 1960, with grenade and launcher developed by German company Dynamit-Nobel AG.
  • The Pzf 44 entered German service during mid-sixties and in several modifications served until mid-eighties, when it was replaced by moremodern Panzerfaust 3 (Pzf 3) weapon.
  • It is a .44 Magnum carbine with a synthetic stock and stainless steel fittings. In common with many Ruger carbines it uses a rotary magazine which holds 4 rounds and fits inside the stock under the breech.

 

Panzerfaust 44 "Lanze" Pzf 44
Panzerfaust 44 “Lanze” Pzf 44

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  • DL-44 
  • The BlasTech Industries DL-44 heavy blaster pistol was a powerful sidearm from the time of the Galactic Civil War (yes, a little bit of sci-fi talk here). The DL-44 is described as a powerful, highly modifiable and accurate blaster pistol.
BlasTech Industries DL-44 heavy blaster pistol - tech drawing
BlasTech Industries DL-44 heavy blaster pistol – tech drawing
  • However, in outward design it is uncannily like the (real) German “Broomhandle” Mauser C96 pistol, used by both its German creators and the Ottoman Empire during World War I, and wound up in the hands of such notable figures as T. E. Lawrence (Lawrence of Arabia) and Winston Churchill, and also saw service among various revolutionary movements throughout the world following the First World War.

 

"Broomhandle" Mauser C96
“Broomhandle” Mauser C96

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  • T-44
  • The T-44 was a medium tank first produced towards the end of the Second World War by the Soviet Union. It was the successor to the famous T-34. Fewer than two thousand T-44s were built, but the design became the basis for the T-54/55 series of main battle tanks, the most-produced tank of all time.
Soviet T44 tank
Soviet T44 tank

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  • TKX
  • The TKX is a relatively new Japanese tank with a 120mm gun, costing approximately $7 million and weighing in at 44 tons weight.

 

Japanese Army TKX 44 ton tank
Japanese Army TKX 44 ton tank

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  • A-44
  • Sometimes known as the ‘mystery tank’, the A-44 was developed as T-34 modernization program in 1941. 29-30 tonns, Hull front armour – up to 75 at 60 degrees, sides – 60mm, 76.2mm and 57mm cannons, 600hp enqine. Only paper project.
A-44 'mystery' tank
A-44 ‘mystery’ tank

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  • XB-44
  • One B-29A was handed over to Pratt & Whitney to be used as a testbed for the installation of the new Wasp Major 28-cylinder engines in the B-29. They came up with the XB-44 variant.

 

XB-44-1 variant of the B-29A
XB-44-1 variant of the B-29A

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  • X-44 MANTA
  • The Lockheed Martin X-44 MANTA (Multi-Axis No-Tail Aircraft) was a conceptual aircraft design that has been studied by NASA and the U.S. Air Force. It was intended to test the feasibility of full yaw, pitch and roll control without tailplanes (horizontal or vertical), attitude manipulation relying purely on 3D thrust vectoring. The aircraft design was derived from the F-22 Raptor and featured a stretched delta wing and no tail surfaces.
The Lockheed Martin X-44 MANTA (Multi-Axis No-Tail Aircraft)
The Lockheed Martin X-44 MANTA    (Multi-Axis No-Tail Aircraft)

 

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  • T-44A
  • The T-44A “Pegasus” aircraft is a twin-engine, pressurized, fixed-wing monoplane, manufactured by Beech Aircraft Corporation, Wichita, Kansas, whose mission is to train Navy and Marine Corps pilots.

 

The T-44A "Pegasus"
The T-44A “Pegasus”

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Other stuff

  • Cities on the 44th parallel include, Minneapolis,  Simferopol (Ukraine), Bordeaux  (France),  Belgrade and Šabac (Serbia), Halifax (Nova Scotia, Canada), Bucharest (Romania), Pierre (South Dakota), Augusta (Maine), and Montpelier (Vermont).
  • Cities on the 44th line of longitude include, São Luís (Brazil), Sana’a (Yemen), Baghdad (Iraq), Nizhny Novgorod (Russia), Hargeisa (Somalia), Arbil (Iraqi Kurdistan), Yerevan (Armenia), and Tbilisi (Georgia).
  • 44 is the international direct dial code for phone calls to the United Kingdom;
  • Interstate 44 is the freeway that runs from Texas to Missouri;
  • U.S. Route 44, is the highway that runs from New York to Massachusetts;
  • In Pennsylvania Route 44(PA 44), is the long state highway in the U.S. state of Pennsylvania
  • The name of a mysterious savior of Poland was prophesied by the Polish national poet Adam Mickiewicz in his masterpiece dramatic poem Dziady (Forefathers). In scene 5 of act 3, the priest Piotr announces a “reviver of the nation” who is to bring back the lost freedom of Poland, and describes him as: “Born from a foreign mother, his blood of ancient heroes, And his name will be forty and four.”
  • 44 is the name of a variant of the card game poker.
  • +44 is the name of a band that includes Blink-182 vocalist/bassist Mark Hoppus and Blink-182 drummer Travis Barker.
  • A blues song, Forty-Four, also known as “44 Blues”
  • Vicks Formula 44 is a cough suppressant
  • The 44 Cent Cure is the cost of treatment of intestinal worms that affect 400 million children in various arts of the world and leads to stunted physical and mental development in both boys and girls. They also cause nausea and diarrhea and in severe cases, they kill.
  • 44 is the largest number for which Wolfram Alpha offers a visual representation.
  • Wyoming was the 44th state to join The United States of America.
  • There are 44 candles in a box of Hanukkah candles.
  • An agent in the American Television series Get Smart goes under the title of 44, usually assigned to small, enclosed, unexpected spots, to meet Maxwell Smart, agent 86.
  • On January 15 1944 An earthquake hits San Juan, Argentina, killing an estimated 10,000 people in the worst natural disaster in Argentina’s history.
  • In 1944 meat rationing ends in Australia.
  • On March 4, 1944 in Ossining, New York, Louis Buchalter, the leader of 1930s crime syndicate Murder, Inc., was executed at Sing Sing, along with Emanuel Weiss, and Louis Capone.
  • In 1944 IBM dedicates the first program-controlled calculator, the Automatic Sequence Controlled Calculator (known best as the Harvard Mark I).
  • On September 14, 1944 the ‘Great Atlantic Hurricane’ makes landfall in the New York City area.
  • And on October 20 an LNG explosion destroyed a square mile of Cleveland, Ohio.

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Significant Number Factoid Friday – Today Number Fifty-Two 52

“Fight Against Stupidity And Bureaucracy”

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They’ve been ‘beautiful’,  they’ve been ‘big’  and they’ve been ‘unusual’.  Today we have another ‘significant’ number, fifty-two, so-called because of its use and the beliefs surrounding it.

Enjoy.

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52 Fifty-Two

52

 

Fifty-two first came to mind because it is the number of weeks in a year. Simple enough. But, as usual, with these significant numbers there is more to fifty-two than you might at first imagine.

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In Religion

  • The 52nd word of the King James Version of the Bible’s Old Testament Genesis is ‘God’
  • Saint Thomas, one of the twelve disciples of Jesus, is believed to have landed in Kodungallur, India to preach the Gospel.
  • Nag Hammadi is a set of 52 religious & philosophical texts, hidden in an earthenware jar for 1,600 years, and accidentally unearthed in the village of Nag Hammadi in Upper Egypt in December 1945. Written in Coptic, this corpus of 1200 pages include the Gospel of Thomas recording the secret sayings of Christ. 
Nag Hammadi
Nag Hammadi
  • The ancient Mexicans divided the time in periods of 52 years, waiting the end of the world to the term of each of they. It is the number of the Aztec century, 13 x 4, called the small cycle. We find it in the ligature of the years for the duration of the suns, in particular the first and the fourth sun, which have a duration of 676 years, are considered as being the most perfect since they contain only the two numbers 13 and 52 whose product gives 676.
  • The Mayan Calendar moves through a complete cycle every 52 years. (until near the end of December this year GULP!)

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In Mathematics

  • Fifty-two is the 6th Bell number and a decagonal number.
  • It is an untouchable number, since it is never the sum of proper divisors of any number, and it is a noncototient since it is never the answer to the equation x – f(x).
  • The number of different ways a complete pack of playing cards may be rearranged is 52! or 52 factorial which is 52 x 51 x 50 x 49 x…
  • This number is very large; For example it would take light approximately 14 billion billion billion billion billion billion years to travel 52! miles.

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In Science

  • The Atomic Number of Tellurium (semi-metallic with silvery lustrous grey color) is 52 
  • Atomic Weight of Chromium (Cr) is 52 

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In Space 

  • Messier object M52, a magnitude 8.0 open cluster in the constellation Cassiopeia
Messier object M52
Messier object M52

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In Sport

  • For over twenty years, 52 was the best-known car number of retired NASCAR driver Jimmy Means.
Jimmy Means Racing
Jimmy Means Racing

 

  • Ray Lewis, is possibly the most famous sportsman to currently wear the number 52 jersey. He plays for the Baltimore Ravens, is a dominant linebacker and force on the premier defense in the NFL. He also has a really unique (and entertaining,) dance he does when entering the stadium field.

Ray Lewis

 

  • But perhaps the most interesting story is that of Michael Lewis “Iron Mike” Webster who was an American football player who played center in the National Football League from 1974 to 1990 with the Pittsburgh Steelers and Kansas City Chiefs. He is a member of the Pro Football Hall of Fame. “Iron Mike” anchored the Steelers’ offensive line during much of their run of four Super Bowl victories from 1974 to 1979 and is considered by some as the best center in NFL history.
  • His career ended after the 1990 season, with a total of 245 games played at center. At the time of his retirement, he was the last active player in the NFL to have played on all four Super Bowl winning teams of the 1970s Steelers. He played more seasons as a Steeler than anyone in franchise history (15 seasons), one season ahead of Hines Ward.
  • While the Steelers no longer officially retire jerseys, Webster’s #52 has not been reissued by the team since he retired and it is generally understood that no Steeler will wear that number again.
  • Webster was proven to have been disabled before retiring from the NFL. After retirement, he  suffered from amnesia, dementia, depression, and acute bone and muscle pain. He lived out of his pickup truck or in train stations between Wisconsin and Pittsburgh, even though his friends and former teammates were willing to rent apartments for him. In his last years Webster lived with his youngest son, Garrett, who though only a teenager at the time, had to act as the parent to his father. Webster’s wife divorced him six months before his death in 2002. He was only 50 years old.
  • Webster is quoted as an example of the difficulties American football players suffer when their careers are over. Other players who retired because of the effects of concussion or other head injuries include Johnny Unitas, Roger Staubach, Merril Hoge, Troy Aikman, Steve Young, Dave Pear, Wayne Chrebet, and Al Toon.
  • After his death, Mike Webster was diagnosed with chronic traumatic encephalopathy, a neurodegenerative disease. Bennet Omalu, a forensic neuropathologist, examined tissue from Webster and eight other NFL players and determined they all showed the kind of brain damage previously seen in people with Alzheimer’s disease or dementia, as well as in some retired boxers. Omalu’s findings were largely ignored by the NFL until Cincinnati Bengals wide receiver Chris Henry was diagnosed with CTE shortly after his death in 2009.
  • It has been speculated that Webster’s ailments were due to wear and tear sustained over his playing career; some doctors estimated he had been in the equivalent of “25,000 automobile crashes” in over 25 years of playing football at high school, college and professional levels.
  • Webster’s estate brought a lawsuit in Maryland’s U.S. District Court against the National Football League. The estate contended that Webster was disabled at the time of his retirement, and was owed $1.142 million in disability payments under the NFL’s retirement plan. On April 26, 2005, a federal judge ruled that the NFL benefits plan owed Webster’s estate $1.18 million in benefits. With the addition of interest and fees, that amount was estimated to exceed $1.60 million. The NFL appealed the ruling, but on December 13, 2006, the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Fourth Circuit in Richmond, Virginia affirmed the Baltimore federal judge’s 2005 ruling that the league’s retirement plan must pay benefits reserved for players whose disabilities began while they were still playing football.
Iron Mike Webster
Iron Mike Webster

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In Militaria

The B-52

  • By far the best know aircraft with the 52 designation is the Boeing B-52 Stratofortress. It is a long-range, subsonic, jet-powered strategic bomber, built to carry nuclear weapons for Cold War-era deterrence missions, and was a replacement for the Convair B-36.
  • It has been operated by the United States Air Force (USAF) since the 1955. The bomber carries up to 70,000 pounds (32,000 kg) of weapons.
  • Beginning with their successful contract bid in June 1946, the Boeing B-52 design evolved from a straight-wing aircraft powered by six turboprop engines to the final prototype YB-52 with eight turbojet engines and swept wings.
  • The B-52 took its maiden flight in April 1952. Although a veteran of several wars, the Stratofortress has dropped only conventional munitions in combat. Its Stratofortress name is rarely used outside of official contexts; it has been referred to by Air Force personnel as the BUFF (Big Ugly Fat/Flying Fucker/Fellow).
  • Superior performance at high subsonic speeds and relatively low operating costs have kept the B-52 in service despite the advent of later aircraft, including the cancelled Mach 3 North American XB-70 Valkyrie, the variable-geometry Rockwell B-1B Lancer, and the stealthy Northrop Grumman B-2 Spirit.
  • The B-52 marked its 50th anniversary of continuous service with its original operator in 2005 and after being upgraded between 2013 and 2015 it will serve into the 2040s.
B-52 in flight and on the ground with ordnance display
B-52 in flight and on the ground with ordnance display

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 The Junkers Ju 52

  • The Junkers Ju 52 (nicknamed Tante Ju (“Auntie Ju”) and Iron Annie) was a German trimotor transport aircraft manufactured from 1932 to 1945.
  • It saw both civilian and military service during the 1930s and 1940s.
  • In a civilian role, it flew with over 12 air carriers including Swissair and Deutsche Luft Hansa as an airliner and freight hauler.
  • In a military role, it flew with the Luftwaffe as a troop and cargo transport and briefly as a medium bomber.
  • The Ju 52 continued in postwar service with military and civilian air fleets well into the 1980s.
Junkers Ju 52
Junkers Ju 52

 

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Ka-52

  • Another notable air machine with the 52 designation is the multi-role all-weather combat Ka-52 “Alligator” helicopter.  First revealed at 1995 Paris Air Show, this is a twin-seat derivative of the attack Ka-50. It is intended for a wide range of combat tasks in daytime and night conditions, in any time of the year with the use of all destruction means of the Ka-50.
  • The Ka-52 has a coaxial design with unique manoeuvrability that allows the helicopter to perform combat maneuvers within the minimum air area and the shortest time to gain an advantageous attack position.
  • From the point of view of the weapons power the “Alligator” is comparable with the “Black Shark” helicopter and is superior to all existing combat helicopters.
The multi-role all-weather combat Ka-52 'Alligator' helicopter
The multi-role all-weather combat Ka-52 ‘Alligator’ helicopter

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USS Barry (DDG 52)

  • The fourth ‘Barry’, the DDG 52, was launched on 10 May 1991 by Ingalls Shipbuilding Inc. and was commissioned into the U.S. Atlantic Fleet on 12 December 1992.
  • The USS Barry DDG 52 has taken part in Operation Support Democracy in Haiti in November 1993; the backdrop for the 50th anniversary of D-Day in the Mediterranean in 1994; the Mediterranean and Adriatic Seas served as “Red Crown” in support of the No-Fly Zone over Bosnia-Herzegovina; the Persian Gulf in 1994 in response to Iraq’s massing of troops on the Kuwaiti border; Operation Vigilant Warriors escort of both the George Washington and an amphibious assault group to anchorage off Kuwait City and as alternate Persian Gulf Anti-Air Warfare Coordinator (AAWC), and principal Tomahawk strike platform during the crisis. 
  • The USS Barry received a Meritorious Unit Commendation, the Southwest Asia Service Medal, the Armed Forces Service Medal, and the NATO Medal for her actions
  • In October of 2004, Barry was again in the Persian Gulf in support of Operations Iraqi Freedom and Enduring Freedom as part of the USS Harry S. Truman (CVN 75) Carrier Strike Group and also participated in Somalia Operations in the Horn of Africa (HOA).
USS Barry DDG52
USS Barry DDG52

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CZ 52

  • The CZ 52 (also known by the Czechoslovakian military designations vz. 52, for “model of 1952”, and CZ 482) is a semi-automatic pistol designed by two brothers, Jan and Jaroslav Kratochvíl, in the early 1950s for the Czechoslovakian military.
  • Around 200,000 vz. 52s were made by Ceská Zbrojovka in Strakonice from 1952 to 1954.
  • The vz. 52 replaced the 7.65 mm Browning caliber (.32 ACP) Vz.50, which had acquired a reputation for unreliability and was underpowered for its role as a military service sidearm.
  • After 30 years of military service, the vz. 52 was eventually replaced by the 9x18mm Makarov caliber vz. 82. Cz-USA began exporting to the US market in January 1998 with the designation CZ 52.
The Czech CZ-52 semi-automatic pistol
The Czech CZ-52 semi-automatic pistol

 

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AA-52

  • The AA-52 (full designation in French: Arme Automatique Transformable Modèle 1952, “Transformable automatic weapon model 1952”), also known as “La Nana” is one of the first French-produced guns of the post-World War II era.
  • It was manufactured by the French government-owned MAS company.
  • The AA-52 is still used today as a vehicle-mounted weapon due to large quantities in service, but has been replaced in the helicopter role by the Belgian FN MAG, starting with the EC 725 Caracal of the Special Operations units and the Air Force Search and Rescue teams.
  • The AA-52 had been largely phased out for infantry use in favour of the lighter FN Minimi. The AA-52 is still in use in Afghanistan.
Arme Automatique Transformable Modèle 1952
Arme Automatique Transformable Modèle 1952

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British Army

  • Part of the British Army forces is 52 Infantry Brigade which has a proud and long history as a fighting brigade.
  • Its reputation during both the World Wars earned it the nickname of ‘The Fighting 52nd’ and its recent deployment to Afghanistan enabled the Brigade to re-establish its fighting credentials as one of the British Army’s fully deployable Type A Brigades.
52 Infantry Brigade 'The Fighting 52nd'
52 Infantry Brigade ‘The Fighting 52nd’

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US Army

  • The 52nd Infantry Regiment
  • The 52nd Infantry Regiment (“Ready Rifles”) is an infantry unit of the United States Army.
  • The coat of arms was originally approved for the 52d Infantry Regiment on June 29, 1921. It was redesignated for the 52d Armored Infantry Regiment on September 29, 1942. The insignia was redesignated for the 52d Armored Infantry Battalion on January 6, 1944.
  • It was redesignated for the 52d Infantry Regiment on October 31, 1958.
52d Infantry Regimental Colors with streamers
52d Infantry Regimental Colors with streamers

 

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  • 1st Battalion, 52d Aviation Regiment
  • The 1st Battalion, 52d Aviation Regiment is known as the “Flying Dragons.”
  • The battalion headquarters is located at Fort Wainwright, Alaska.
  • The battalion provides aviation support to USARAK (United States Army Alaska) with UH-60A Blackhawks and CH-47 Chinooks. On order, deploy and conduct full spectrum aviation operations in support of Combatant Commanders.
52d Aviation Regiment "Flying Dragons" patch
52d Aviation Regiment “Flying Dragons” patch

 

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Other Stuff 

  • A standard piano has 52 white keys

K-52-piano 

  • Fifty-two is the approximate number of weeks in a year. 52 weeks is 364 days, while the tropical year is 365.24 days long. According to ISO 8601, most years have 52 weeks while some have 53.

 calendar

  • There are 52 cards in a standard deck of playing cards, not counting Jokers or advertisement cards

card fan 

  • There is a 52 Plus Joker Club that was formed to facilitate, the collection and trading of antique and collectible playing cards and related items; the advancement of knowledge about the history, manufacture and artistic aspect of playing cards; and the promotion of fellowship among members with similar interests.

 

  • DC Comics has a weekly comic series entitled 52 that has 52 issues, with a plot spanning one full year.

 DC Comics The New 52

  • In finance one of the vital statistics always quoted in stocks/shares summaries is the 52 week High/Low trading price

 

  • Patolli is an Aztec board game utilizing 52 squares arranged in a cross form. Its name came from the Aztec word for bean— patolli, meaning fava or kidney bean. The game is played on a curious diagonal cross-shaped board with red and blue markers and five beans (or occasionally four beans) as dice. The game’s goal is to return the pieces back to the original starting position. Patolli was most likely also used in a religious and ritualistic sense for divination— the throw of the beans was thought to be able to tell the future.
Ancient Aztec game called Patolli
Ancient Aztec game called Patolli
  • Cities located at 52o latitude: Berlin, Germany; Hannover, Germany; Amsterdam, Netherlands; Warsaw, Poland; and Birmingham, UK.
  • And finally, the  Morden Blush Rose, bred in Canada, has 52 petals.
52 Petal Morden Blush Rose
52 Petal Morden Blush Rose

Significant Number Factoid Friday – 15 Fifteen

“Fight Against Stupidity And Bureaucracy”

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They’ve been ‘beautiful’,  they’ve been ‘big’  and they’ve been ‘unusual’.  Today we have another ‘significant’ number, fifteen, so-called because of their use and the beliefs surrounding it.

Enjoy.

 

15 Fifteen

15

The number fifteen is perhaps best known today because of Andy Warhol’s fifteen minutes of fame statement.

 

Other facts about fifteen include,

  • in mathematics fifteen is what is known as a triangular number, a hexagonal number, a pentatope number and the 4th Bell number;
  • fifteen is the atomic number of phosphorus;
  • 15 Madadgar is designated as an emergency number in Pakistan, for mobile phones, similar to the international GSM emergency number 112, if 112 is used in Pakistan, then the call is routed to 15;
  • Passover begins on the 15th day of the Hebrew month of Nisan;
  • in Spanish culture 15 is the age when a Hispanic girl celebrates her quinceañera;
  • it is the number of days in each of the 24 cycles of the Chinese calendar;
  • it is the number of guns in a gun salute to Army, Marine Corps, and Air Force Lieutenant Generals, and Navy and Coast Guard Vice Admirals;
  • it is the number of checkers each side has at the start of a backgammon game;
  • and it is the number corresponding to The Devil in tarot cards.

 

In sport,

  • there are 15 players on the field in each rugby union team at any given time;
  • in tennis, the number 15 represents the first point gained in a game;
  • the jersey number 15 is worn by the starting fullback;
  • the jersey number 15 has been retired by several North American sports teams in honor of past playing greats or other key figures: in Major League Baseball the New York Yankees, for Thurman Munson: in the NBA the Boston Celtics, for Hall of Famer Tom Heinsohn; the Dallas Mavericks, for Brad Davis; the Detroit Pistons, for Vinnie Johnson; the New York Knicks have retired the number twice, first for Dick McGuire, and then for Earl Monroe; the Philadelphia 76ers, for Hall of Famer Hal Greer; the Portland Trail Blazers, for Larry Steele: in the NHL: the Boston Bruins, for Hall of Famer Milt Schmidt: and in the NFL: the Green Bay Packers, for Hall of Famer Bart Starr; and the Philadelphia Eagles, for Hall of Famer Steve Van Buren.

 

In politics

  • The 15th President of the United States was Democratic Party candidate James Buchanan (1791–1868) who was in office from March 4, 1857 to March 4, 1861. His VP was John C. Breckinridge.
  • He is the only president from Pennsylvania, the only president who remained a lifelong bachelor, and the last president born in the 18th century.
James Buchanan 15th President of the United States of America
James Buchanan 15th President of the United States of America

 

  • The 15th Amendment to the Constitution granted African American men the right to vote by declaring that the “right of citizens of the United States to vote shall not be denied or abridged by the United States or by any state on account of race, color, or previous condition of servitude.” Although ratified on February 3, 1870, the promise of the 15th Amendment would not be fully realized for almost a century. Through the use of poll taxes, literacy tests and other means, Southern states were able to effectively disenfranchise African Americans. It would take the passage of the Voting Rights Act of 1965 before the majority of African Americans in the South were registered to vote.

 

  • Special Field Orders, No. 15 were military orders issued during the American Civil War, on January 16, 1865, by General William Tecumseh Sherman, commander of the Military Division of the Mississippi of the United States Army. They provided for the confiscation of 400,000 acres of land along the Atlantic coast of South Carolina, Georgia, and Florida and the dividing of it into 40-acre parcels, on which were to be settled approximately 18,000 freed slave families and other Blacks then living in the area. Brig. Gen. Rufus Saxton, an abolitionist from Massachusetts who had previously organized the recruitment of black soldiers for the Union Army, was put in charge of implementing the orders. The orders had little concrete effect, as they were revoked in the fall of that same year by President Andrew Johnson, who succeeded Abraham Lincoln after his assassination.

 

Space Exploration

Apollo 15 was launched on July 26th, 1971, and landed on July 30th, 1971, at Hadley Rille. Splash Down was on August 7th, 1971. The crew was David R. Scott, James B. Irwin and Alfred M. Worden. At the time, NASA called it the most successful manned flight ever achieved.

Apollo15 insignia

Apollo 15 was the ninth manned mission in the Apollo space program, the fourth to land on the Moon, and the eighth successful manned mission. It was the first of the longer “J Mission” expeditions to the moon, where the terrain was explored in some detail, and there was a much greater emphasis on science than had previously been possible.

The flight of Apollo 15 featured the first use of the Lunar Rover, which permitted Scott and Irwin to leave the Lunar Module “Falcon” behind and drive around over more than 27 kilometers of lunar ground.

The astronauts found and brought back the “Genesis Rock,”, a chunk of ancient lunar crust that has been extensively studied for clues about the origins of the moon and the Earth.

During the return flight aboard the Command Module “Endeavour,” Alfred Worden became the first man to perform a space walk outside of earth’s orbit as he went outside to retrieve some film from the side of the space craft.

Although the mission accomplished its objectives, this success was somewhat overshadowed by negative publicity that accompanied public awareness of postage stamps carried without authorization by the astronauts, who had made plans to sell them upon their return.

 

Militaria

F-15 Eagle

  • The best known aircraft with this designation is the F-15 Eagle. It made its first flight in July 1972, and the first flight of the two-seat F-15B (formerly TF-15A) trainer was made in July 1973. The first Eagle (F-15B) was delivered in November 1974. In January 1976, the first Eagle destined for a combat squadron was delivered. The single-seat F-15C and two-seat F-15D models entered the Air Force inventory beginning in 1979.
F-15 Eagle
F-15 Eagle

 

 

X-15

  • The X-15 is perhaps the most ambitious aircraft ever created. It was built to push the limits of flight and explore the possibilities of space travel. During its research program the aircraft set unofficial world speed and altitude records of 4,520 mph (Mach 6.7 on Oct. 3, 1967, with Air Force pilot Pete Knight at the controls) and 354,200 ft (on Aug. 22, 1963, with NASA pilot Joseph Walker in the cockpit).
  • In the course of its flight research, the X-15’s pilots and instrumentation yielded data for more than 765 research reports.
  • The X-15 had no landing gear, but rather skidded to a stop in a 200 mph landing on skis. It had reaction controls for attitude control in space, and was a major step on the path toward space exploration. Much of what was learned on the X-15 was applied to the Space Shuttle.
The record breaking X-15
The record breaking X-15

 

The AR-15

  • With the exception of the Kalashnikov, the Armalite AR-15 is perhaps the best know assault rifle in the world. It is a lightweight, 5.56 mm, magazine-fed, semi-automatic rifle, with a rotating-lock bolt, actuated by direct impingement gas operation or long/short stroke piston operation. It is manufactured with the extensive use of aluminum alloys and synthetic materials.
  • The AR-15 was first built by ArmaLite as a selective fire assault rifle for the United States armed forces. Because of financial problems, ArmaLite sold the AR-15 design to Colt. The select-fire AR-15 entered the US military system as the M16 rifle. Colt then marketed the Colt AR-15 as a semi-automatic version of the M16 rifle for civilian sales in 1963. The name “AR-15” is a Colt registered trademark, which refers only to the semi-automatic rifle.
  • Unfortunately its characteristics also made it a favorite weapon of terrorist organizations.
AR15 assault rifle
AR15 assault rifle

15 Gun Salute

  • A 15 gun salute is accorded to a 3-star General

 

 

The Plus 15 Skyway

The Plus 15 or +15 Skyway network in Calgary, Alberta, Canada, is the world’s second most extensive pedestrian skywalk system, with a total length of 16 kilometers (9.9 miles) and 59 bridges. The system is so named because the skywalks are approximately 15 feet (approximately 4.5 metres) above street level. (Some Plus 15 skywalks are multi-level, with higher levels being referred to as +30s and +45s.)

The system was conceived and designed by architect Harold Hanen, who worked for the Calgary Planning Department from 1966 to 1969. It provides a pleasant alternative to the cold streets in the winters which can be harsh.

 

Plus 15 walkways, Calgary, Alberta, Canada.
Plus 15 walkways, Calgary, Alberta, Canada.

 

 

The 15 Puzzle

One of the most famous puzzles, the 15-puzzle (also called Gem Puzzle, Boss Puzzle, Game of Fifteen, Mystic Square and many others) is a sliding puzzle that consists of a frame of numbered square tiles in random order with one tile missing. The puzzle also exists in other sizes, particularly the smaller 8-puzzle. If the size is 3×3 tiles, the puzzle is called the 8-puzzle or 9-puzzle, and if 4×4 tiles, the puzzle is called the 15-puzzle or 16-puzzle named, respectively, for the number of tiles and the number of spaces. The object of the puzzle is to place the tiles in order (see diagram) by making sliding moves that use the empty space.

The 15 puzzle
The 15 puzzle

 

 

And finally, The Church Choir

But one of the most unusual occurrences of the number concerns fifteen members of a church choir in Beatrice, Nebraska, due at practice at 7:20, were late on the evening of March 1, 1950.

  • the minister, his wife and daughter were delayed while his wife ironed the daughter’s dress;
  • another girl waited to finish a geometry problem for homework;
  • one couldn’t start her car;
  • two waited to hear the end of an exciting radio program;
  • one mother and daughter were late because the mother had to call the daughter twice to wake her from a nap;

and so on.

All the reasons seemed ordinary. In total there were ten separate and quite unconnected reasons for the lateness of the fifteen persons.

It was rather fortunate that none of the fifteen arrived on time at 7:20, for at 7:25 the church building was destroyed in an explosion.

Life Magazine reported that the members of the choir wondered if their delay was “an act of God.”

The Mathematician Warren Weaver, in his book, ‘Lady Luck: The Theory of Probability’, calculates the staggering odds against chance for this event as about one in a million.

 

 

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