The formation of the United States of America in one cool animated map

Enjoy this cool animated map that shows the formation of the United States, territory by territory, from its first incarnation to the incorporation of Hawaii on August 21, 1959. Make sure to click on expand to see it big.

via The formation of the United States of America in one cool animated map.

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Watching people struggle in informercials is laugh out loud hilarious

The toughest problems mankind has ever faced? The problems that late night infomercials promise to solve. Life has never been harder than it is in those clips. Everyday tasks become so frustrating that you need to pay 5 installments of $19.95 to get one—no, wait for a limited time only we’ll throw in an extra set—TWO easy egg cracker tools to make your life infinitely better.

via Watching people struggle in informercials is laugh out loud hilarious.

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Netflix Is Going to Raise Prices for New Users

Bad news: Netflix will be hiking its prices for new subscribers. Per a first quarter letter to shareholders, CEO Reed Hastings says:

Our current view is to do a one or two dollar increase, depending on the country, later this quarter for new members only.

Hastings added that the $8 rate for existing customers will stand for a “generous time period.” It will only be a dollar or two a month, which isn’t much, but if you’ve been thinking about signing up for Netflix and you haven’t already, now might be the time if you want to save a few bucks. Hastings hasn’t mentioned when this is happening, just that it is going to happen at some point. We’ve reached out to Netflix and we’ll update when we have more.

via Netflix Is Going to Raise Prices for New Users.

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Why Thyroid Conditions Are So Bad

It seems like just about everyone knows someone with a thyroid condition. Their symptoms can sometimes be wide ranging. Much like the IRS and their tax code, it can leave you a little confused about what exactly it does and why it can cause so many problems. In an effort to put this ignorance to bed, let’s take a little closer look at this inexplicable little endocrine gland.

The thyroid is the largest independent endocrine gland in the body. It’s butterfly shaped and wraps around the front part of your trachea (your wind-pipe) just below the Adam’s apple. (If you’re curious- see Why the Adam’s Apple is Called That) The thyroid secretes hormones that affect almost every cell in your body. In fact, only the adult brain, spleen, testes and uterus aren’t affected by it.

While not strictly necessary for life, thyroid hormones perform several functions, including controlling cellular metabolism and temperature, thereby controlling your body’s metabolic rate, and its production of heat. It has a major role in regulating blood pressure and heart rate by raising the number of adrenergic receptors (the ones that stimulate your fight or flight nervous system) in your blood vessels. It also plays an important role in the development of the skeletal, nervous, and reproductive systems, while also promoting tissue growth.

via Why Thyroid Conditions Are So Bad.

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Rufus Cuff wants to dominate the wearable market and your forearm

We told you to put on your disappointment pants for the Galaxy Gear 2, but for the Rufus Cuff we suggest rolling up your absurdity sleeves. Seriously, given its three-inch screen you might just have to. This wearable boasts a built-in mic, a camera, a speaker, web browser, voice control, GPS and full access to the Google Play store — if the Cuff sounds like a smartphone that straps to your wrist, well, that’s basically what it is. It connects to your Android or iPhone via Bluetooth for mobile data, making calls and sending texts, but it’s running a full version of Google’s mobile OS and can hook on to WiFi if you’re in a cellular dead-zone or if your phone’s battery runs out.

via Rufus Cuff wants to dominate the wearable market and your forearm.

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Bill Gates Says the Way U.S. Treats Puerto Rico is “Just Wrong” | Puerto Rico Report

In a Rolling Stone interview published yesterday, Bill Gates is quoted as saying that the way the U.S. treats Puerto Rico is “just wrong.”

Answering a question about income inequality in the United States, the richest man in the world responded:

“When we get things right, it benefits the entire world. The world’s governments don’t copy everything we do. They see some things we do – like the way we run our postal service, or Puerto Rico – are just wrong. But they look to us for so many things. And we can do better.”

Gates brings up a point also noted by Ronald Reagan and many other high profile individuals over the years – that the United States’s role as a champion of democracy is compromised by its possession of Puerto Rico, and that the island’s status as a U.S. territory is an issue for all Americans.

via Bill Gates Says the Way U.S. Treats Puerto Rico is “Just Wrong” | Puerto Rico Report.

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An Issue for all Americans | Puerto Rico Report

Only residents of Puerto Rico were eligible to vote in the November 2012 referendum, but that doesn’t mean that Puerto Rico’s status is important just to people living in Puerto Rico.

Members of the U.S. government and other high profile Americans have recognized this:

[T]his is not primarily about Puerto Rico, but about the rest of us. What are our values? What is our culture? How can we make one America in a world and a nation ever more diverse?

President Bill Clinton, Democratic Governors Association Dinner, February 23, 1998

[T]his is a domestic obligation of ours.  [Puerto Rico] is not another country.

Sen. Marco Rubio (R-FL), Hearing before the Committee on Foreign Relations (video)

We cannot expect our foreign policies to be enjoying prestige around the world – attracting support instead of collapsing – when we are having serious problems with our closest neighbors.

Ronald Reagan, “Puerto Rico and Statehood,” Wall Street Journal, February 11, 1980.

Make a career of humanity, commit yourself to the noble struggle for equal rights.  You will make a greater person of yourself, a greater nation of our country, and a finer world to live in.

Martin Luther King Jr.

Puerto Rico has been a possession of the United States since 1898, so its treatment is relevant to everyone in the United States.

via An Issue for all Americans | Puerto Rico Report.

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