Pirates never made people walk the plank -- that came from Peter Pan. Pirates didn't have treasure maps -- that came from Treasure Island. Pirates didn't talk like pirates, either -- that came from Treasure Island actor Robert Newton. Want more of the sad truth about real pirates? Watch Museum Secrets on the History Channel. The good news? Pirates really did fly Jolly Roger flags!
Mark Frauenfelder is the founder of Boing Boing and the editor-in-chief of MAKE and Cool Tools. Twitter: @frauenfelder. His new book is Maker Dad: Lunch Box Guitars, Antigravity Jars, and 22 Other Incredibly Cool Father-Daughter DIY Projects