People From Around The World Share Facts Everyone In Their Profession Knows But The Rest Of Us Don't

People From Around The World Share Facts Everyone In Their Profession Knows But The Rest Of Us Don't

We're all at the mercy of experts. The doctor, the baker, the candlestick maker. They all do things we don't know how to do. And they all know things about what they do that we don't know, that they don't want us to know.

Thankfully, these people from all over the world recently took to the internet to share the secrets of their trades that we don't know. Just for our edification and amusement. Enjoy!

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45. What Goes Up...

An elevator will go up to the top of the hoist instead of crash to the floor in most catastrophic failures due to the counter weights.

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44. Milk Shop Doesn't Sound As Good

Coffee shops spend more on milk than coffee. Starbucks isn’t in the coffee business, it’s in the milk business.

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43. Insecurity

A corporate policy of requiring users to change their passwords every 90 days does not make your system more secure. It tends to actually make things less secure.

Same with most password complexity requirements.

If you force a 12+ character password that cannot be dictionary defined, your users are writing it down on a post-it note.

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42. Sweet Little Lies

Most people are not good at detecting lies, and consistently score no better than chance (50/50) when tested. The score goes up slightly when it's someone they know that they're talking to, but not much.

Ironically, most people rate themselves as very good at detecting lies, but they're wrong.

To add to this, experienced detectives are no better at telling who is lying and who is telling the truth than rookie police officers. The only difference is that they believe they are better.

Among law enforcement the only ones who scored above chance were secret service officers due to some of their special training in reading non-verbal language in strangers. Even they were only around 70%, though.

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41. Walking On Wire

We had a garden in our backyard growing up. I used to dig in the spots where my mom didn't have any plants growing. I decided one morning that I was going to dig to China (I was young, okay?), and kept going until I hit a thick black cord. So I stabbed at it with the shovel, and saw all sorts of colors inside it. Naturally, I thought I'd found some treasure, but what I was actually looking at was dozens of individual wires inside the cord, and what I'd done was take out the cable TV for the entire street.

There is a surprising amount of infrastructure under your feet. You’d be surprised how much public utility runs underneath private property. Always call before you dig.

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40. Night At The Museum

In some museums, what you see on the shelves can be less than 10% of the whole collection. For example, The Louvre has over 460,000 items in their collection, and only has space to display about 35,000 of those (roughly 7.6% of their total collection).

Due to limited physical space, and for aesthetic purposes, most items in museums stay back in storage and/or archives. Plus, most items need to be maintained at certain temperatures, and light. If we can't meet those needs, it will never be allowed for public viewing, ever. There are most likely some of the most amazing, visually stunning pieces of artwork, that you or anyone will never get to see.

Accession and De-accession can also be a touchy area. Just because it's "old", doesn't mean we're going to take it and add it to the collections. We try to be nice to people who are disappointed we won't take their precious family heirlooms. Other times, it's easier just to say, "Yeah, we don't want that."

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39. Take Care Of The Good Boys

Heartworms are treatable for dogs, but not for cats.

Also, keep on top of your heartworm prevention for your dog; if they get heartworm but you can prove that they've been continually covered (which isn't difficult; the receipts are good enough, and your vet will have them in their database), then the heartworm prevention manufacturer will pay for the treatment.

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38. The IT Crowd

I was the sole IT guy at a smallish company. Apparently one day, while in a meeting, my boss happened to spy me playing a game on my phone and made a comment along the lines of... "What  do we actually pay this guy for?"

My friend thankfully replied: "Is your email working? Can you access the internet? Are all our servers up? That's what we pay him for."

If your IT Guy is not busy, he is doing a good job not a bad one and you don't need to fire him.

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37. I Had An Inkling

Touching your fresh tattoo with your unwashed fingers is bad. It's absurd how many times we have to tell this to people.

It's so logical! Like, if you were just stabbed with a knife, you wouldn't rub your dirty fingers all over the why would it be okay when you were just stabbed hundreds or thousands of times with a needle over a wide area?

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36. How Appt

Mobile app developer here. No I can't just make an app quickly based on your "unique idea" and strike it rich upon releasing to the app store. Also, your "unique idea" was already created by 25 other apps over a year ago and no one is downloading them.

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35. Getting A Head

The maximum spacing between spindles in a railing is 4" because that's the average size of a baby's head. Most building officials will carry a 4" sphere with them when doing inspections on new-construction.

Similarly, when public play structures are being evaluated, the evaluator brings two size paddles, one which is equal to the average size of a newborn's head, and one that equal to the largest average size of a child under 10. They then stick the paddles in all crevices of the play structure. If the smaller one (the head) can get through, the bigger one (body) must also be able to, otherwise the structure won’t pass inspection.

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34. You Can Say That Again

No one is going to see your website if you don't have a strategy to drive traffic there.

For whatever reason, people seem to think if you put something online people are, at best, going to flock to it in droves, or at worst at least stumble across it accidentally. But that's 100 percent not going to happen. Nobody's just going to stumble on your website.

It's like putting a restaurant on the moon, not telling anybody about it then wondering why no one's eating there.

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33. Plane Jane

There is no such thing as a perfectly functioning aircraft. Every plane you fly on has a multitude of maintenance issues, just not severe enough to affect safety of flight.

Don't let it scare you, these issues are accounted for. Obviously too many is bad and will still cause issues, but any complex machine (especially one where human safety is involved like an aircraft) is loaded with redundancies.

And it could be worse. If I remember correctly, the Saturn V had a component failure tolerance of something ridiculous like 10%. Imagine sitting on top of over 7.5 million pounds of thrust and thinking "10% of this might not be working right".

So yeah, don't sweat the planes.

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32. Is This An Emergency?

Most 911 calls an ambulance receives on a daily basis are not remotely close to being emergencies.

About half of our calls are for patient transfers to/between hospitals. The other half of calls are “911 calls”. And only half of those 911 calls are true emergencies. And the only time we use lights and sirens is when a person is in deep trouble and staring death in the face. So if an ambulance comes up to you, lights blaring, move outta the way. Fast.

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31. Trials & Tribulations

Being a civil attorney -- we almost never go to jury trial and the job can be unbelievably boring.

And the time and expense involved. Its not uncommon for suits, particularly those of large dollar amounts, to take 3-5 years to reach resolution, and the expenses can easily run into the mid-six figures.

Just settled an admitted liability crash case, where the only question was damages. Mid-six figure settlement, high five figure expenses (mostly for doctors and experts). Took three and a half years.

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30. Laying Pipe

Nominal pipe diameters are not indicative of their actual diameter. So a 1" pipe is rarely actually 1" in either outside or inside diameter.

Why? I have no idea. But if you drill a hole of exact diameter and stick that pipe in there, you're going to have a bad time.

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29. Have You Tried...

Turning your computer or phone off and on again will fix a solid 70-80% of all problems the device likely has.

People think that turning off and on again is a joke, but it works most of the time.

I've been doing IT for 20 odd years, if no one changed the configuration, turning it off and on again is going to "fix" the issue. Sometimes stuff just happens and it needs a reset.

Half the time my job seems to consist of being on conference calls with C level executives explaining why we need to turn it off and on, and when I can do it.

The answer is usually "3 weeks time, 4am Sunday morning."

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28. Stockers

Being a stock broker does not mean I know how you can turn $100 into $1,000,000 by next month. Stop texting me.

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27. Insurance In Short

I worked as an insurance adjuster. Most people have no idea what homeowner's insurance actually does. Here is a very simple guide to understanding what is covered by homeowners insurance:

A sudden and one-time occurrence

While there are some exceptions to this, understanding those few words will help you understand 95% of what is and is not covered by your policy.


26. Cracking Wise

Cracking joints does not cause arthritis. And the sound isn't bones cracking it's normally nitrogen gas escaping from your joint cavity.

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25. Diamonds Aren't Forever

In jewelry, a diamond is a luxury expense, not an investment. Gold is the investment. If you try to sell your engagement ring you’ll get maybe 20% of what you initially paid for it. Jewellers can get diamonds for a fraction of what you paid for it.

Even gold is only an investment if you buy it at the right price -- i.e. NOT mall jewelry price. You need to be somewhere in the ballpark of spot value for weight for it to be of any use as an investment.

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24. What's The Score

In scoring for film, the orchestra/ensemble actually plays the music live as the movie is played behind them. It is recorded and synced.

The conductor (who is usually the composer) stands facing the screen and has a small screen in front of them with different colored bars to indicate starting/stopping and pace, as well as other cues and insets. Composers have watched the film beforehand and are often frequent collaborators with certain directors.

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23. Truck Stop

There is a period of time every year that in the US, the Department of Transportation pulls over any and every truck that they can. During this period many trucking companies take vacation time, as the potential hassle is not worth the money made during this time.

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22. The Game

In designing 3D games, many programmers, even in big gaming companies, still have a devil of a time with colliders (making it so the player doesn't fall through the floor or walk through walls). Everything should work correctly, but nooooo. The solution? God knows. We all just layer dozens of colliders on top of each other and hope for the best. Why do you think there are so many walking through corner glitches?

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21. My Chemical Romance

As a chemist the thing that gets me every time is the, "I don't want chemicals in my..." statement.


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20. Rhythm And Blues

You know how they always show scenes like this on TV?

First, the patient flatlines. Then, some doctor starts yelling "code blue! code blue!" And then all the machines start beeping while the doctor grabs the two big paddles, taps them together a couple times, yells "clear!" and shocks the patient. The patient dramatically bounces up when this happens. Then the doctor taps the paddles again. "Clear!" He shocks the patient. Patient jumps. He does this a few more times.

Meanwhile there's like 8 people around manipulating all the tubes and hoses that are attached to the patient. Eventually, the doctor is in tears. He can't revive the patient. A kind older nurse says "He's gone, Jim. He's gone." The doctor breaks down over the patient as the paddles dramatically fall to the floor. He says, "call it, Doris." And the nurse looks at her watch and calls the time of death. Then the doctor stands up, removes his mask, says "I'll let his wife know" and leaves the room.

Yeah, you don’t defibrillate flatline cardiac rhythm like they do on TV. It’s a non-shockable rhythm.

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19. Chemistry Is So Important

“Organic” foods aren’t necessarily grown without chemicals. There’s a ton of organic label pesticides out there, many of which are just as toxic as their synthetic counterparts.

For clarification, when I say "grown without chemicals", I was referring to man-made products like fertilizers and insecticides/herbicides. No duh all crops are produced with chemicals. Water, technically, is a chemical.

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18. In Essence

The "essential" in essential oils doesn't mean it is essential to your body or health.

It basically means that it is the pure essence of that particular plant or flower.

So many people have taken this to mean that they are literally essential to our health and well being. It hurts my brain.

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17. I Thought I Was The First!

Most people don't realize how many people actually drive a car before it gets to the dealer.

Usually it's at least 5, one to load it on the train, one to unload the train, one at the loading pad, the truck driver who delivers the car, and the guy who drives it to its spot.

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16. Trust The Experts

Your new house you just built probably has much better insulation than your old house from the 70's. Since the house is much more energy efficient the size of the furnace and/or air conditioner may be smaller than what you had at your old house even if the new house is larger.

No, we can't use rules of thumb to size your HVAC equipment no matter what Google says. We have to use a load calculation and that has to be approved by the building department.​

Having an HVAC system that runs all the time but just barely gets you to the temperature you want is more energy efficient than a larger system that turns off and on all of the time. Even if it seems like the system is running constantly.

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15. Caffeine Fiend

When I worked at Starbucks not a lot of people understood that a larger espresso drink does not always equal more caffeine. A tall drink has 1 shot, grande has 2, and a venti also has 2, unless it’s iced and then it gets a 3rd shot. So many times customers would order a grande latte and say “you know what, you’d better make that a venti, I can use the extra caffeine” when in fact the larger size is just more diluted with milk. If you are looking for more caffeine, a drip coffee is going to be the most bang for your buck.

Also, this seems really obvious, but a lot of people would get upset when they ordered a flavored coffee and saw that I would put syrup in it. No, coffee beans do not naturally come in caramel, vanilla, toffee nut, raspberry etc. flavor.

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14. A Strongly Worded Letter

When you write to your politician, he won't be reading your letter and he won't be writing the reply. That's all done by staffers. All he does is "sign here."

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13. It's Sentient

True A.I. is a LONG way away.

I'm a software engineer, and I work with a lot of algorithms. What's billed as "A.I." today isn't quite "Artificial Intelligence", it's just a bunch of advanced algorithms, some of which are capable of 'learning' things in a very strict/narrow scope. In other words, people (especially marketing) seem to use the terms 'machine learning' and 'artificial intelligence' interchangeably, when they shouldn't be. I guess I understand why, Artificial Intelligence sounds cooler, but really none of these things can actually make decisions on their own, which is a true benchmark of A.I.

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12. Silent As The Grave

Drowning is silent. I pulled out a kid literally less than a foot away from a large group of adults and not one of them noticed that his head was totally submerged and that he was struggling.

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11. Loose Lips

Just because a disabled child/person is non-verbal, that doesn’t necessarily mean they can’t understand everything you’re saying. It’s crazy how often I have to tell my own staff to watch what they’re saying. These kids still get embarrassed or upset if you talk about the massive dump they just took right in front of the whole class.

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10. Doctor, Doctor

Most PhD programs don't have a fixed timeline in the same way other degree programs do. In other words, unlike undergraduates, most PhD students don't know their expected graduation date until they're almost complete.

So stop asking PhD students when they will be graduating.

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9. Special Delivery

1) The pizza needs time to be assembled, to bake, and to deliver to your house. Usually there’s always a few tickets a head of yours. 30-45minutes is not that long considering those things.

2) The “I’ll pay the driver extra to deliver it to me” and “it will only take about 15 minutes to get here” does not fly especially during dinner rush. 15 minute trip equals a 30 minute round trip. You’re out of range. Order somewhere else.

3) You do not have to wear gloves prepping food before it’s cooked. Employees should always wash their hands before handling food regardless, but don't yell at my employees for touching your pizza with their hands before they even baked it.

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8. The Mighty Body

Potential cancer cells develop in the human body every day and our immune system efficiently kills them without any trouble and we just go on living our lives like nothing ever happened.

Many of the cells the immune system eliminates may not have progressed to the point where they could cause disease and there are many other mechanisms through which the body curbs cancer development.

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7. Bow To Your Sensei

A black belt isn't a martial art god. They're just an advanced student.

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6. Detention

Children behave differently at home than they do at school.

​Seriously, teachers have no reason to lie about your child misbehaving. Logging behavior and initiating a less-than-positive exchange creates more work for us. Why would we lie to create more work for ourselves?

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5. The Boo Boo Bus

If you call 911 for something minor (flu-like symptoms, sprained ankle, etc.) you will usually be sent to the waiting room and triaged like every other walk-in. You aren't saving yourself any time and we take great pleasure in watching your face when you realize the toe pain you've had for a week isn't a priority just because you took a ride in the boo boo bus.

On the flip side, depending on the system, EMS providers can do a lot to treat issues. Just because something is serious or even life threatening doesn't mean we load the patient, fire up the sirens, and zoom to the hospital (with a few exceptions like trauma and stroke). Rest assured, the 10-15 minutes we're in the back is being used to treat the problem and (hopefully) have you pretty much fixed by the time you get to the ER. We have a lot of medications and tools to use and it's safer for everyone to do as much as possible in the driveway or parking lot if we can. Please don't pound on the door yelling that we need to go when we're starting IVs, calculating doses, determining if we need advanced airways, etc.

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4. This Point Brought To You By Coca-Cola

Almost everything is an ad. Buzzfeed, Forbes, everything. Product mentioned in an article? Ad. First page of Google search results? Ads. Even if they don't say ad on them.

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3. Heavy Metal

Virtually every piece of copper, aluminum, or steel you come across has been chopped to bits, refined, melted down and used to make whatever object it's a part of. Dozens, if not hundreds of times. Copper pipe? Probably started out as hundreds of different wires from various devices from around the world at one point.

Gold and silver have been recycled much more than that. Because gold from multiple sources is routinely melted together, it is entirely possible that gold inside your wedding ring was the object of a thousand robberies. It is quite possible that some of your gold witnessed the burning of Troy, Carthage, and Tenochtitlan. Gold is the physical essence of human greed and malice. That's what is so great about it.

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2. Early Warning

Neurodegenerative diseases (Alzheimer's, Parkinson's...) start way before the first symptoms appear.

No one wakes up suddenly one day with Alzheimer's. From actual data, it seems that the disease is dormant for 10-15 years before the first symptoms. Some research says that you can start identifying abnormalities 20+ years before the memory loss begins.

And it works for all neurodegenerative diseases.

I work in Parkinson’s disease research. For Parkinson’s it’s loss of smell, REM sleep disturbances and constipation. These can start up to 20 years before motor symptoms develop.

But there is currently no treatment to stop or slow the progression of the disease.


1. Signed, Sealed, Delivered

"Shipped" is not the same as "delivered".

At least 4 times a day, someone comes up to me and shows me their email from Amazon Prime with the subject line "Your order of [WTF ever] has shipped!" and then angrily demand to know why it's not on their doorstep or in their mailbox or wherever. I have to calmly explain that when they receive the email that says it's been delivered, that's when I can help them, if they still need help.

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