Wikipedia's list of common misconceptions

The Wikipedia entry for "List of common misconceptions" is chock-a-block with fascinating tit-bits that you can amaze and disabuse your friends with:


# There is no evidence that Vikings wore horns on their helmets.[3][4]
# There is no evidence that Iron maidens were invented in the Middle Ages or even used for torture, despite being shown so in some media, but instead were pieced together in the 18th century from several artifacts found in museums in order to create spectacular objects intended for (commercial) exhibition.[5]...
# Al Gore never said that he "invented" the Internet; Gore actually said, "During my service in the United States Congress, I took the initiative in creating the Internet."[33] Gore was the original drafter of the High Performance Computing and Communication Act of 1991, which provided significant funding for supercomputing centers, and this in turn led to upgrades of a major part of the already existing, early 1990s Internet backbone, the NSFNet, and development of NCSA Mosaic, the browser that popularized the World Wide Web; see Al Gore and information technology. ...

# Microwave ovens do not cook food from the inside out. Microwave radiation penetrates food and causes direct heating only a short distance from the surface. This distance is called the skin depth. As an example, lean muscle tissue (meat), has a skin depth of only about 1 cm at microwave oven frequencies. [47]...
# Shaving does not cause terminal hair to grow back thicker or coarser or darker. This belief is due to the fact that hair that has never been cut has a tapered end, whereas, after cutting, there is no taper. Thus, it appears thicker, and feels coarser due to the sharper, unworn edges. The fact that shorter hairs are "harder" (less flexible) than longer hairs also contributes to this effect.[73] Hair can also appear darker after it grows back because hair that has never been cut is often lighter due to sun exposure...
# In South Korea, it is commonly believed that sleeping in a closed room with an electric fan running can be fatal in the summer. According to the Korean government, "In some cases, a fan turned on too long can cause death from suffocation, hypothermia, or fire from overheating." The Korea Consumer Protection Board issued a consumer safety alert recommending that electric fans be set on timers, direction changed and doors left open. Belief in fan death is common even among knowledgeable medical professionals in Korea. According to Yeon Dong-su, dean of Kwandong University's medical school, "If it is completely sealed, then in the current of an electric fan, the temperature can drop low enough to cause a person to die of hypothermia."[93][94][95][96] Although an air conditioner transfers heat from the air and cools it, a fan moves air to increase the evaporation of sweat. Due to energy losses, a fan will slowly heat a room.

List of common misconceptions

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