In Light of the Volkswagen Scandal

I thought of doing this a while ago, finally got around to it. I laughed when I finished it.

These-aren't-the-emmisions-you're-looking-forJohn Oliver’s take on the Volkswagen emissions scandal

New book: Thing Explainer


A while ago, I posted the comic Up Goer Five, an annotated blueprint of the Saturn V rocket with all the parts described using only the thousand most common English words.

Today, I’m excited to announce that I’m publishing a collection of large-format (9″x13″) Up Goer Five-style blueprints. The book is full of detailed diagrams of interesting objects, along with explanations of what all the parts are and how they work.

The titles, labels, and descriptions are all written using only the thousand most common English words. Since this book explains things, I’ve called it Thing Explainer.


The diagrams in Thing Explainer cover all kinds of neat stuff—including computer buildings (datacenters), the flat rocks we live on (tectonic plates), the stuff you use to steer a plane (airliner cockpit controls), and the little bags of water you’re made of (cells).

Thing Explainer will be published by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt on November 24th. You can preorder it now (AmazonBarnes & Noble

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Derinkuyu & The Underground Cities of Cappadocia

Sometimes Interesting


In 1963, a man in the Nevşehir Province of Turkey knocked down a wall of his home. Behind it, he discovered a mysterious room. The man continued digging and soon discovered an intricate tunnel system with additional cave-like rooms. What he had discovered was the ancient Derinkuyu underground city, part of the Cappadocia region in central Anatolia, Turkey.

The elaborate subterranean network included discrete entrances, ventilation shafts, wells, and connecting passageways. It was one of dozens of underground cities carved from the rock in Cappadocia thousands of years ago. Hidden for centuries, Derinkuyu‘s underground city is the deepest.

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BBC News: Once a coward, always a coward?

I saw this story on the BBC News iPhone App and thought you should see it:

Once a coward, always a coward?

Does the first man shot for cowardice in World War One deserve a place on a memorial in the village he was born?

Read more:

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Article: Roger Easton, Father Of GPS, Dies At 93

Roger Easton, Father Of GPS, Dies At 93

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