This jelly wobble is designed to force you to read something that you wouldn’t normally read about, and hopefully learn something. So I headed over to the main page of Wikipedia to it’s randomly generated Featured Article section. Today (29th July), it’s featured article was about Barber Coinage. No, I hadn’t heard of them either. So, in a nutshell, the Barber Coinage are the small coins in American money – the dime, quarter and half dollar – and how they came by their designs. Fairly topical, considering the recent UK news of the £10 note changing. Barber is the name of the person responsible for the design of the coins.
The Wikipedia entry is fairly boring so here are the interesting things:
- Charles Barber was born in London. A Brit designed the American coins!
- The President of the USA nominates the chief minter. Must be very important.
- A competition was launched to find the final design, because earlier versions were heavily criticised. But the competition failed.
- That’s it really.
What is fascinating though, is that if you put British coins together, they make a picture of a shield. I never knew that!
I recently finished a fantastic, and very well written, book called “The 100 year old man who climbed out a window and disappeared” by Jonas Jonasson. Set in Sweden, its about a 100 year old man who escapes from his Old People’s Home and goes on an adventure. The sub-plot charts his incredible life of influencing major political events whilst drinking vodka. A inebriated Forrest Gump if you will. The protagonist meets Stalin, and considering I don’t know much about this very famous (and infamous) man, I wikipedia’d him.
Definitely worth a read of the very long article, but here are a couple of things I learnt:
- He was winner of Time Magazine Man of the Year. Twice. Hitler also “won” the title.
- He was nominated for the Nobel Peace Prize. Twice. Hitler was also nominated.
Read something random on Wikipedia and let me know what you learnt @jelly_wobbler. I think the Featured Article may become a regular habit of mine.
- Surprising Facts about Wikipedia http://pochp.wordpress.com/2010/08/16/surprising-facts-about-wikipedia/