Category Archives: Quick Facts

Quick Facts Geography Preview

I’m itching to get started on Quick Facts Geography. I have a few ideas about how I’d like to do it, as well as what I want to include. For each country, I’ll provide facts and information that you can quickly find, rather than having a wall of text to search through.

So, here is what I’m thinking about including:

Country Basics

  • Country name, origin of name, and name in official language.
  • Official language(s)
  • Map (Google Maps embedded)
  • Flag
  • Official religion (if available)

By the Numbers

  • Population
  • Area
  • Year of independence
  • Highest point (with picture)
  • Lowest point
  • Borders with neighbours
  • Coastline
  • Administrative divisions
  • Life expectancy at birth
  • Literacy
  • Human Development Index

Cities

  • Five largest cities with population and pictures (these will be public domain or shareable via Creative Commons).

Physical Geography

  • Description of general areas: mountain ranges, major lakes, major rivers, etc.

Environment

  • Climate zones (Koppen classifications)
  • Average high and low for hottest and coldest months at selected locations.

Some information may not be included, some may be added. This is not a complete list, and is subject to change.

So, I would like some suggestions from you. What would you like to see included in Quick Facts Geography? Let me know in the comments below. Thanks!

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Astronomy Quick Facts – Aoede

Aoede is a very small moon of Jupiter’s, and is a member of the Pasiphae group. It’s also known as Jupiter XLI. It was discovered by a team of astronomers led by Scott S. Sheppard at the University of Hawaii in 2003. Very little is known about it.

Data

  • Mean radius: 2 km
  • Mass: Unknown
  • Density: Unknown
  • Surface gravity: Unknown
  • Albedo: Unknown
  • Temperature: Unknown
  • Mean orbital radius: 23,980,000 km (semi-major axis)
  • Orbital period: 761.5 d (retrograde)
  • Inclination: 162° to Saturn’s equator
  • Eccentricity: 0.4311

Name Origin

Aoede is one of the original three muses. Her father is Zeus and mother is Mnemosyne.  She was the muse of voice and song. Her sisters are Melete and Mneme.

5 Interesting Facts

1. Aoede is a member of the Pasiphae group, which orbits retrograde and at a highly inclined and eccentric orbit. Probably a captured asteroid.

2. Its original temporary designation was S/2003 J 7.

3. It’s pronounced ay-ee-dee.

4. Sheppard has been involved in the discovery of 75 moons. Okay, so this isn’t about Aoede.

5. Really, there’s very little known about Aoede. I can’t do five interesting facts.

With such a highly inclined and eccentric orbit, and such a small size, it’s unlikely we’ll see any kind of exploration of this moon any time soon.

Astronomy Quick Facts – Anthe

Anthe is a very small moon of Saturn, and a member of the Alkyonides. It’s also known as Saturn XLIX. It was discovered by the Cassini Imaging Team on May 30, 2007. Very little is known about it.

AthneData

  • Mean radius: 1 km (estimated)
  • Mass: 5×1012 kg
  • Density: Unknown
  • Surface gravity: Unknown
  • Albedo: Unknown
  • Temperature: Unknown
  • Mean orbital radius: 197,700 km (semi-major axis)
  • Orbital period: 1.03650 d
  • Inclination: 0.1° to Saturn’s equator
  • Eccentricity: 0.001

Name Origin

Anthe is one of the Alkyonides. She was one of the seven daughters of Alcyoneus, who was killed by Heracles. When he died, they threw themselves into the sea and were changed into halcyons by Amphitrite.

5 Interesting Facts

1. It orbits between Mimas and Enceladus.

2. Its 10:11 mean-longitude resonance with Mimas causes its semi-major axis to vary by 20 km every 2 years.

3. The other Alkyonides, Methone and Pallene are in similar orbits, and they may have a similar origin, possibly a larger moon broken apart by a large impact.

4. The Anthe Ring Arc may be caused by micrometeoroid impacts on Anthe. This partial ring appears in the vicinity of Anthe.

5. It was the sixtieth confirmed moon of Saturn.

Not much is known about this moon, but there are several images available. Here’s another one with the ring arc.

Anthe-ring

How Much Did You Know About the United States?

320px-Flag_of_the_United_States.svgI did another quiz, this time about the United States. Well, here are the answers.

1. What’s the capital of the United States?

It’s Washington, D.C.

2. What are the three largest cities in the US by metropolitan area population?

According to the 2012 estimate, they are: New York City (23,462,099), Los Angeles (18,238,998), and Chicago (9,899,902).

3. What’s the population of the US?

The 2015 estimate is 321,163,157 people.

4. How many states are there?

There are 50, but I’m not going to list them all!

5. What is the largest state by area?

That would be Alaska with an area of 1,477,950 square kilometres.

6. Which state has the smallest population?

According to the 2013 estimate, that would be Wyoming with 582,658 people.

7. If you go directly south from Detroit, where do you end up?

I should’ve been a bit more clear with this question. I meant immediately south, like as soon as you leave Detroit, where are you? I will accept any of the following answers:

  • Canada
  • Windsor, Ontario
  • Ontario
  • Detroit River

So, how did you do? You’ll learn more when I begin Geography Quick Facts, including each state individually. Thanks for participating in the quiz!

How Much Did You Know About Canada?

320px-Flag_of_Canada.svgI asked some questions about Canada earlier today, and now it’s time to give the answers.  How did you do?

1. What’s the capital of Canada?

This is a pretty simple one. It’s Ottawa. It seems Montreal was a common answer, but the correct answer is Ottawa.

2. What are the three largest cities in Canada by metropolitan area population?

The common answers were Toronto and Montreal, but I also saw Quebec, Ontario (which is a province, not a city), Vancouver, and Calgary. Well, here are the answers, as of the 2011 census:

First is Toronto with 5,583,064. Second is Montreal with 3,824,221. Third is Vancouver with 2,313,328.

3. What’s the population of Canada?

We got some widely varying answers from as low as 5 million to as high as 80 million. Well, the official estimated population as of 2015 is 35,749,600. Were you close?

4. How many provinces are there?

There are 10 provinces and 3 territories. The provinces from west to east are: British Columbia, Alberta, Saskatchewan, Manitoba, Ontario, Quebec, New Brunswick, Prince Edward Island, Nova Scotia, and Newfoundland and Labrador. The territories are: Yukon, Northwest Territories, and Nunavut.

5. What’s the most widely spoken language in Canada?

It looks like most people got this one. English, of course. 56.9% of Canadians speak English as a first language, while 21.3% speak French as a first language.  16.1% speak both languages (bilingual).

How did you do? I hope you learned a bit about Canada. In the future, I’ll be covering all of the countries in the world, including Canada, with the Geography Quick Facts series. You’ll be able to learn about countries in a quick and easy way. Thanks for answering the questions.

Learn Science and Geography with Quick Facts

As promised, I have begun the Encyclopedia Entries spinoff, now known as Quick Facts. I’ve created a new page for it, which you can see here. If this is your first time hearing about this, you’re probably wondering what Quick Facts is.

Quick Facts is a project of mine that started off as Encyclopedia Entries. I wanted to write about various topics and give quick and easy to read information.  I thought this wasn’t organised as well as it could have been, so I started Quick Facts. I will be focusing on different topics, mainly in science and geography.  At the moment, the only topic that has been started is Astronomy. I’ve also created a page for that, as I’ve been doing the moons of the solar system already. Check it out!

In the very near future (probably this week), I’ll be writing the pages for the other three topics I’ll be covering for now. They are:

  • Geography – I will be going through every country in the world with basic information concerning physical geography, statistics, and a few images. After the countries are finished, I’ll be doing Canadian provinces, American states, Japanese prefectures, and Australian states. After that, who knows? There are more countries with political divisions.
  • Palaeontology – I loved dinosaurs when I was a kid, so I’ll be going through all of the officially recognised dinosaurs in alphabetic order. After that, probably pterosaurs.
  • Space Exploration – This is something I’d announced earlier this year, but hadn’t started yet. I’ll be going through all of the space probes that have been launched to study worlds other than Earth. I’ll be doing them in chronological order, including failed probes.

There will be other topics in the future. One I’d like to cover is birds of North America.

While this blog discusses writing fiction, particularly science fiction and fantasy, I also have a strong desire to discuss education and science. As it is called I Read Encyclopedias for Fun, it makes sense that I talk about these topics. I love reading, and it’s not limited to speculative fiction. I love to read about science, geography, and history as well. I hope you enjoy these Quick Facts.

Is there another topic you’re interested in?