Moxie LaBouche, author of Your Brain on Facts, has released a new episode of her podcast, listen here and read the transcript.
A content advisory before we begin. This episode contains a homophobic slur, in its original context.
The history of the human being is divided into two major epochs, the dividing line between them being the first written record. If you were asked to name the greatest advance in mankind’s ability to record its history and disseminate ideas (before the internet, of course), you might well say that came in 1493, when Johannes Gutenberg of Germany created a printing press with movable type. Movable type meant that each letter was on its own block and they could be arranged as needed to form any text. Prior to this, an entire page of text had to be carved from a single block of wood, like one enormous stamp. Consider the time it would take to carve a single block, then multiply that by the number of pages in even the shortest book. Any printing press was an improvement over hand-lettered manuscripts, but the Gutenberg press could print over 200 pages per minute and gave the world what would be called the Gutenberg 42-line Bible. Books and the ideas they contained were no longer the exclusive purview of the wealthy. Greater access to ideas and information was a causative force behind such things as the Renaissance, the Protestant Reformation, and the Industrial Revolution. But did you know the far east was printing books with moveable type nearly eight decades before the first Gutenberg Bible was bound?
Full transcript on website.
Things You Didn’t Know, Things You Thought You Knew, and Things You Never Knew You Never Knew
The world is full of things you didn’t know, things you thought you knew, and things you never knew you never knew. From the eponymous podcast comes Your Brain On Facts.
Train your brain. So what if you picked up some historical inaccuracies (and flat-out myths) in history class. Your Brain On Facts is here to teach and reteach readers relevant trivia. It explains surprising science in simple language, gives the unexpected origins of pop culture classics, and reveals important titbits related to current issues.