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The latest news on Features from Business Insider

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    world war 1 us navy

    World War I ended 100 years ago on Sunday. 

    It was a brutal war that lasted more than four years and killed an estimated 8.5 million soldiers and 13 million civilians. 

    It was also a war that cemented the US as a world power, rising to the level of the colonial European powers from which so many Americans and their ancestors had fled. 

    But the US has been embroiled in war or conflict for much of the century since the Great War ended. 

    And the following iconic war photos show that path. 

    World War I (1914-1918).

    This photo was taken by Paul Popper for Getty Images. It shows British troops running out of their trenches to charge the enemy lines during the bloody Battle of the Somme. Spaces between trenches were branded "no man's land." 

    When Americans got to Europe, this is what the fighting looked like. Life in the trenches involved sharing damp, diseased quarters with dead bodies and making slow, if any progress. 

    The Great War between the Allied and Central Powers involved more than 30 countries. It's estimated that 8.5 million soldiers and 13 million civilians were killed during the war. 

    World War II (1939-1945).

    This photo was taken by Jose Rosenthal for the Associated Press. It shows US troops raising the flag on the Japanese island of Iwo Jima, one of the first pieces of Imperial Japanese territory to fall to US hands.

    Fifty years after the picture was taken, the Associated Press wrote that it may be the world's most widely reproduced.

    But half of the six soldiers depicted died — among 6,821 Americans — on the very same island they claimed: Franklin Sousley, Michael Strank, and Harlon Block.

    The Second World War between the Allied and Axis Powers killed approximately 40 to 50 million people, making it the deadliest war in history. 


    Korean War (1950-1953).

    This photo was taken by R.V. Spencer for Getty Images. It shows a Korean girl carrying her brother past a stalled M-26 tank in 1951. 

    The Korean War began in June 1950 when North Korea, backed by the Soviet Union and China, invaded South Korea, which was backed by the US.

    The fighting lasted until 1953, and was devastating to the local population, with approximately 1.6 million civilian casualties on both sides. The war, however, is still technically ongoing, as there was never a peace treaty. 


    See the rest of the story at Business Insider

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    The Insider Picks team writes about stuff we think you'll like. Business Insider has affiliate partnerships, so we get a share of the revenue from your purchase.


    REI is home to literally everything you need for an enjoyable adventure in the outdoors. As winter and the holiday season nears, the outdoor retailer is having a huge "Gear Up Get Out" sale that's worth taking advantage of for yourself or anyone on your holiday gift list.

    Now through November 19, you can get up to 30% off outdoor apparel, gear, footwear, and accessories.

    The limited-time sale includes discounts on jackets, warm base layers, winter boots, tents, sleeping bags, backpacks, ski gear, bikes, and much more.

    Whether you're loading up on gear for an upcoming cold-weather excursion, shopping for a warm jacket, or looking for a very specific item, you're likely to find it here. We rounded up some of the best deals, but since the sale is so massive, these product categories can help you find exactly what you need.

    Shop the REI Gear Up Get Out sale now or keep reading for our picks, below:

    Men's Patagonia Nano Puff Jacket

    $138.99, available in eight colors (Originally $199) [You save 30%]


    Women's Patagonia Nano Puff Jacket

    $138.99, available in colors (Originally $199) [You save 30%]

    Men's The North Face ThermoBall Snow Triclimate 3-in-1 Jacket

    $244.29, available in four colors (Originally $349) [You save 30%]

    See the rest of the story at Business Insider

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    Pokemon Let's Go, Pikachu! and Let's Go, Eevee!

    "Pokémon: Let's Go" is the newest Pokémon role-playing game, and the first entry of the main series to arrive on the Nintendo Switch.

    Launching this November, "Pokémon: Let's Go" presents a more interactive version of the Pokémon world, showing wild pokémon running around for the first time in a main-series game, and adding new ways for players to bond with their Pokémon partners.

    "Let's Go" takes clear cues from the mobile game "Pokémon Go" and appears to be more accessible for fans interested in the core Pokémon games. Veterans of the series may be disappointed by the limited number of Pokémon and some missing features, but "Pokémon: Let's Go" offers plenty of new gameplay improvements.

    "Pokémon: Let's Go" takes place in the same region as "Pokémon Red & Blue," with the original 151 pokémon.

    "Pokémon: Let's Go" returns to the Kanto region from the first games in the series, "Pokémon Red & Blue." This means that the original 151 pokémon will also be making a return, too, along with their Alolan variations from "Pokémon Sun & Moon" and a new legendary Pokémon, Meltan. Players will explore updated 3D versions of the same cities, forests and destinations from "Red & Blue," and battle against the classic gym leaders like Brock and Misty. The notorious Team Rocket will play the role of villain once more.

    There are key differences between "Let's Go Pikachu" and "Let's Go Eevee."

    While the gameplay and story of both versions of "Pokémon: Let's Go" is the same, there are a few key differences. Most obviously, the version of the game you pick will determine your partner Pokémon: Pikachu or Eevee. Each version of the game will also have some exclusive wild Pokémon, and the version will determine how frequently some types of Pokémon appear.

    The confirmed exclusive Pokémon in "Let's Go: Pikachu" include Oddish, Sandshrew, and Growlithe. "Let's Go Eevee" has wild Bellsprout, Vulpix and Meowth. There are certainly more exclusive Pokémon to be found in both games. In order to catch all of the Pokémon in either game, you'll need to trade with someone who has the opposite version to obtain the other set of exclusive Pokémon.

    Bonding with your partner Pokémon will unlock special abilities, and you can customize their appearance.

    Forming a bond with your Eevee or Pikachu is a key part of the game: Players will be able to customize their partner's outfit, play with them and give them treats. Improving your friendship with your partner Pokémon will unlock special abilities that can be used both in and out of combat. Your partner will constantly follow you throughout the Pokémon world and will react when spoken to. 

    Youtube Embed:
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    See the rest of the story at Business Insider

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    miranda lambert

    If you're a country music fan, then you're more than familiar with Miranda Lambert. The singer has been dominating the genre for years, with more than five studio albums released since 2001.

    Lambert's tracks have clearly resonated with listeners, whether she's belting out lyrics about heartbreak or her childhood home. 

    In honor of her 35th birthday on Satyurday, November 10, here are six things you probably didn't know about Lambert. 

    The non-country artist she'd love to collaborate with is Beyoncé.

    "I'm obsessed with Beyoncé," Lambert told Entertainment Weekly. "I have every Beyoncé record, I have Destiny's Child, I've seen her four times in concert, so I'm just a giant fan."


    She created her own animal foundation in 2009 called MuttNation.

    Lambert's love for dogs inspired her to launch the Tennessee-based foundation"to ensure that as many dogs as possible would have a safe and happy place to call home."

    Lambert has her own line of wine, called Red 55 Winery.

    The name of the brand was inspired by her prized red '55 Chevy named Tammy, which Lambert has owned since she was 17.

    Each type has its own unique name, from a chardonnay called "White Liar" to a sweet wine named "Crazy Ex-Girlfriend."

    See the rest of the story at Business Insider

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    Border Patrol tactical units agents

    The migrant caravan of about 4,000 to 5,000 men, women and children left Mexico City Friday morning to continue their journey to the US via Tijuana, according to several media reports. 

    The US Justice Department and Department of Homeland Security also posted "an interim final rule" on Friday that migrants who cross the border illegally will not be able to apply for asylum.  

    President Donald Trump has 5,600 troops to the border ahead of the immigrant caravan. They aren't the only ones there sporting military gear.

    And the Washington Post reported that US Border Patrol agents are gearing up with military equipment to prevent the migrants, many of whom are reportedly looking for asylum or a better life, from crossing illegally.

    Here are some of the weapons and gear Border Patrol agents are carrying. 

    SEE ALSO: Border Patrol agent explains why some asylum seekers cross the US border illegally

    SEE ALSO: I went on a Border Patrol ride-along in one of the most heavily crossed areas on the US-Mexico border — here's what happened

    Border Patrol Tactical Units (BORTAC) are carrying M4 rifles with silencers, which are often used by the US military's special operators on secret missions, and holographic sights.

    Read more about BORTAC here

    Source: Washington Post

    The M4s have PEQ-15 infrared sights that are used in tandem with night vision-goggles.

    Source: Washington Post

    BORTAC agents are also wearing masks, noise-cancelling headsets, the US Army's latest Operational Camouflage Pattern uniforms, and are even carrying extra rifle magazines.

    Source: Washington Post, Business Insider

    See the rest of the story at Business Insider

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    scaleMost of the time, exercise can help with weight loss, but that's not always the case. Sometimes there are other factors at play that can cause you to gain weight even when you're trying to lose it. 

    Here are some reasons you could be gaining weight even if you're exercising and trying to lose weight.

    You're eating too much.

    Following a nutritious diet can be just as important as exercising. According to Mayo Clinic, "You gain weight when you eat more calories than you burn — or burn fewer calories than you eat."

    Although you shouldn't burn the exact number of calories you consume, if you're consuming way more calories than what you're burning during your workouts, you may end up gaining weight instead of losing it. 


    ... Or you aren't eating enough.

    It may seem contradictory to some, but under-eating can lead to weight gain.

    According to Jillian Michaels' website, not consuming enough calories can cause the body to begin to break down muscle and hold onto fat as the body goes into a period of starvation due to insufficient energy.

    Figuring out your daily caloric needs and opting for nutrient-dense foods can be useful when it comes to avoiding weight gain. 

    You're not mixing up your workout routine.

    Over time, the body adapts to exercise and becomes more efficient.  According to Women's Health, progression and variety are key for individuals with weight loss goals.

    If you just repeat the same routine, your body gets used to it and you may not build muscle and lose weight as efficiently as you'd like. 

    In mixing up your routine, the following variables can be manipulated or varied: exercise type, intensity, duration, volume, and rest.

    See the rest of the story at Business Insider

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    kanye west

    From lavish birth announcements to elaborate stage designs, it's easy to assume that many of your favorite musicians are fantastically wealthy.

    Looking at the actual numerical difference between their earnings and those of the average American worker truly puts that wealth into perspective.

    According to the U.S. Bureau of Labor's statistics from the second quarter of 2018, the average US worker makes $45,552 a year. Some of the richest rappers and hip-hops artists make that same amount in mere hours.

    UK company MyVoucherCodes crunched the numbers from Forbes' 2018 "Hip-Hop Cash Kings" list and created an interactive calculator, which breaks down just how much these artists make as each second passes. (The tool also includes two of the highest earning female artists, often considered to be hip-hop-adjacent, from the 2018 Forbes Celebrity 100.)

    Keep reading to see how long it takes these artists to earn the average US salary, with each person listed in order of ascending wealth.

    12. It would take Travis Scott exactly 19 hours to earn the average US salary.

    The 26-year-old rapper — and Kylie Jenner muse— has taken the music world by storm in recent years. His latest album "Astroworld" enjoyed a massive debut and two-week reign at No. 1 on the Billboard Hot 100.

    11. It takes Eminem 17 hours and 18 minutes.

    Twenty years, 43 Grammy nominations, 15 Grammy wins, and one Oscar award later, Eminem is still one of the most celebrated rappers in history — and is reportedly worth $190 million.

    10. DJ Khaled earns the average US salary in 14 hours and 48 minutes.

    DJ Khaled may be best known for his catchphrases ("We the best!") and injecting his own name into the lyrics of a song, but he has actually produced more than 20 albums — 10 of his own and 11 for other artists.

    See the rest of the story at Business Insider

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    taco bell lindsay demunno

    I wouldn't call myself a big fast food eater, but I do enjoy McDonald's fries or a Chick-fil-a sandwich now and then.   

    So with National Fast Food Day coming up on November 16, I decided to try a fan-favorite among fast food connoisseurs: Taco Bell. Yes, you read that right, I've never tried Taco Bell before.  

    Keep reading to learn about my first experience at the famous fast food chain. 

    For my first-ever Taco Bell experience, I headed to a location in New Jersey.

    Sadly, the one in my home-town closed down a few years ago but I didn't have to travel too far to find the next-closest one. Taco Bell has more than 6,500 restaurants across the US, and 300 locations in 24 countries around the world.

    When I walked in, the restaurant was pretty crowded for 2:30 p.m. on a Saturday.

    I was expecting the restaurant to be empty since I thought I went at an off time and figured most people would use the drive-thru, which also had a long line. 

    I waited in line and browsed the menu above me. Taco Bell has over 16 different varieties of tacos.

    I was surprised at the menu's variety: apparently, it features over 52 different items.

    See the rest of the story at Business Insider

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    FILE PHOTO: Bitcoin (virtual currency) coins placed on Dollar banknotes, next to computer keyboard, are seen in this illustration picture, November 6, 2017.  REUTERS/Dado Ruvic/Illustration/File Photo

    Since it was created in 2009, Bitcoin has experienced significant highs and lows.

    Bitcoin is considered the preeminent cryptocurrency in the world, but there's still plenty of mystery surrounding its creation. Who came up with Bitcoin? Was it created by more than one person? And who is Satoshi Nakamoto?

    Here's a rundown on the currency's strange beginnings:

    In 2008, the first inklings of bitcoin begin to circulate the web.

    In August 2008, the domain name was quietly registered online. Two months later, a paper entitled 'Bitcoin: A Peer-to-Peer Electronic Cash System' was passed around a cryptography mailing list.

    The paper is the first instance of the mysterious figure, Satoshi Nakamoto's appearance on the web, and permanently links the name "Satoshi Nakamoto" to the cryptocurrency. 




    On January 3, 2009, 30,000 lines of code spell out the beginning of Bitcoin.

    Bitcoin runs through an autonomous software program that is 'mined' by people seeking bitcoin in a lottery-based system. Over the course of the next 20 years, a total of 21 million coins will be released.


    But Satoshi Nakamoto didn't work entirely alone.

    Among Bitcoin's earliest enthusiasts was Hal Finney, a console game developer and an early member of the "cypherpunk movement" who discovered Nakamoto's proposal for Bitcoin through the cryptocurrency mailing list. 

    In a blog post from 2013, Finney says he was fascinated by the idea of a decentralized online currency. When Nakamoto announced the software's release, Finney offered to mine the first coins — 10 original bitcoins from block 70, which Satoshi sent over as a test.

    Of his interactions with Nakamoto, Finney says, "I thought I was dealing with a young man of Japanese ancestry who was very smart and sincere. I've had the good fortune to know many brilliant people over the course of my life, so I recognize the signs."

    Finney has flatly denied any claims that he was the inventor of Bitcoin and has always maintained his involvement in the currency was only ever secondary. 

    In 2014, Finney died of the neuro-degenerative disease ALS. In one of his final posts on a Bitcoin forum, he said Satoshi Nakamoto's true identity still remained a mystery to him. Finney says he was proud of his legacy involving Bitcoin, and that his cache of bitcoins were stored in an offline wallet, left as part of an inheritance to his family. 

    "Hopefully, they'll be worth something to my heirs," he wrote.

    As of today, one bitcoin is worth more than $10,000.  

    See the rest of the story at Business Insider

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    iphone xs

    Laptops should be more like smartphones, at least when it comes to certain features.

    It seems that smartphones are getting all the innovations and goodies while laptop design and features have remained fairly stagnant over the last few years. It's understandable, as mobile devices are incredibly important, but surely laptops aren't less important, are they?


    Check out the five smartphone features I'd love to see in laptops:

    SEE ALSO: Apple's new MacBook Air vs. the MacBook Pro: Here are the main differences

    The OLED displays of top smartphones.

    With richer colors and supreme contrast, OLED displays on smartphones not only make operating systems, apps, and content look better than traditional LCD displays, they're also more power efficient, too. One of the ways OLED displays are more efficient is that pixels can essentially turn themselves off when displaying the color black, and they don't shine as much as LCD displays when displaying certain colors and certain brightnesses. That power efficiency can often lead to better battery life. 

    With that in mind, OLED displays seem like a no-brainer for laptops, but most laptop makers still use LCD displays. There are some laptops that come with OLED displays, but not many. 

    One reason why more laptops don't come with OLED displays is cost, as devices with OLED displays tend to be more expensive. Still, cost can be mitigated by manufacturing advances and production volume, and it doesn't look like much has been done to mitigate the cost of OLED for laptops — yet.


    Facial recognition to unlock Mac laptops.

    Owners of some Windows 10 laptops can use the Windows Hello facial-recognition feature to unlock their devices by simply sitting in front of their laptops. Despite Apple's advanced Face ID facial recognition on its latest iPhones, facial recognition hasn't made its way to Apple's laptops yet.

    Some laptops, like the new MacBook Air, come with fingerprint scanners, which is a decent alternative. But nothing beats just existing in front of your laptop to unlock it. 

    Wireless charging.

    I'm not the biggest advocate of wireless charging for mobile devices, but wireless charging for laptops could make more sense seeing as laptops are less "mobile" than mobile devices. Indeed, if your laptop usually rests on a desk all day, you could constantly keep it topped up. And it can keep charging while you're using it, unlike smartphones that you need to pick up from wireless charging pads to use. 

    Wireless charging is basically the same thing as plugging in a charger into a laptop, just without the whole plugging in part. You could just set down your laptop on a desk with a wireless charging pad and it'll charge and power itself without any further interaction. 

    At this stage, it looks like the technology for laptop wireless charging is still in its nascence. Dell announced a laptop in 2017 that came with wireless charging, but the feature hasn't really taken off so far, nor is it widely available. 

    See the rest of the story at Business Insider

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    Oprah Winfrey

    It's almost time to start shopping for holiday tech gifts, but don't worry — Oprah has you covered. 

    The mogul released her annual list of "favorite things" on Wednesday, and it includes a bevy of very giftable items, from clothes to cook wear to gifts for you pet — and even tech gadgets

    Oprah's list includes a few flagship products that were released in 2018, like the iPhone XR and the Apple Watch Series 4. But it also includes a few items you may not have otherwise come across, like a panic button that attaches to your smartphone. 

    Here are the 10 tech gadgets Oprah recommends for 2018: 

    SEE ALSO: Google's new $150 Home Hub does a lot of things you probably don't need — but it has one feature that automatically makes the price tag worth it

    10. Katana Safety Arc

    The Katana Safety Arc is a personal alarm system that attaches to your smartphone. It comes equipped with two alarms: one is an audible siren, and the other is a silent alert button. The alerts will then bypass your lock screen and contact Katana's subscription service, which will in turn alert the police or your emergency contacts. 

    The device costs $100, comes in 10 colors, and is available on Amazon

    9. Ricoh Theta SC 360 camera

    Ricoh's Theta camera takes 360-degree photos and videos, works with both Android and iOS devices, and has an optional weatherproof case for shooting outdoors. 

    Oprah recommends trying it in "stadiums, gymnasiums, or any other vast space" to get the full effect. 

    The camera costs $179.95 right now and is available on Amazon

    8. Lumos smart bike helmet

    The Lumos smart bike helmet is intended to make bikers more visible on the road. It's outfitted with LED lights: 10 on the front, 38 on the back, and 11 for both turn signals. Plus, it comes with a remote for your handlebars that lets you safely turn on your turn signal.  

    Lumos says the battery will last about six hours on flashing mode and three hours on solid mode. 

    The helmet costs $179 and is available on Amazon.

    See the rest of the story at Business Insider

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    max rose

    • Congressional candidate Max Rose, a Democrat, defeated Republican incumbent Dan Donovan in a district that includes Staten Island and part of Brooklyn.
    • Staten Island is known as New York City's reddest borough and went to Donald Trump in 2016.
    • Take a look behind the scenes of his election night party.

    SEE ALSO: 12 records the 2018 midterm elections smashed

    When I met Garth Powell, he was standing outside a polling site in Staten Island with a sign that simply said, "MAX ROSE FOR CONGRESS."

    He'd taken 10 days off work to canvas for Rose, going door to door for days to introduce Staten Islanders and South Brooklyn residents to the candidate.

    Like many of the volunteers for Rose who I met on November 6, he'd had a handful of hours of sleep the night before, but he was quick to smile and greet all who walked past him. He'd been volunteering since August for Rose, but even he was nervous.

    When asked how he felt about Rose's chances, he glanced up at the rain and shrugged before turning to me. "It's Staten Island," he offered in response, likely referring to the fact that for that Staten Island is considered one of the strongest bases of Republican support in New York City.

    Dan Donovan, the Republican incumbent for New York's 11th District (which encompasses all of Staten Island and the southern tip of Brooklyn) won the last congressional election by 53,000 votes.

    The district voted heavily in favor of Donald Trump in 2016.

    Many of the campaign volunteers I spoke with during the day shared a similar sense of clouded optimism.

    But neither Staten Island's Republican legacy nor heavy rain and wind deterred the hundreds of volunteers who knocked on an estimated 500,000 doors leading up to the midterm election.

    See the rest of the story at Business Insider

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    nsa building

    Sure, between the spying on millions of Americans and the sitting on critical security vulnerabilities for years, the National Security Agency (NSA) has a pretty bad reputation.

    But have you heard about its brain-teasers?

    The US spy agency employs some of America's best and brightest as spooks and code-breakers, so it's no surprise that its employees might have an interest in riddles and puzzles.

    Every month, the NSA publishes on its website a brain-teaser written by an employee that members of the public can try their hand at. 

    One month it's a maths challenge created by an applied research mathematician; the next it's a logic puzzle by a systems engineer. They're all published in what the NSA calls its "Puzzle Periodical."

    "Intelligence. It's the ability to think abstractly. Challenge the unknown. Solve the impossible. NSA employees work on some of the world's most demanding and exhilarating high-tech engineering challenges. Applying complex algorithms and expressing difficult cryptographic problems in terms of mathematics is part of the work NSA employees do every day," the NSA says on its website. 

    We've rounded up a six of the most interesting brain-teasers below. So take a read, and see if you can out-smart the NSA's most fiendish riddlers!

    Here's a relatively easy one to start off with, from July 2016:

    Submitted by Sean A., NSA Applied Mathematician

    On a rainy summer day, brothers Dylan and Austin spend the day playing games and competing for prizes as their grandfather watches nearby. After winning two chess matches, three straight hands of poker and five rounds of ping-pong, Austin decides to challenge his brother, Dylan, to a final winner-take-all competition. Dylan clears the kitchen table and Austin grabs an old coffee can of quarters that their dad keeps on the counter.

    The game seems simple as explained by Austin. The brothers take turns placing a quarter flatly on the top of the square kitchen table. Whoever is the first one to not find a space on his turn loses. The loser has to give his brother tonight’s dessert. Right before the game begins, Austin arrogantly asks Dylan, “Do you want to go first or second?”

    Dylan turns to his grandfather for advice. The grandfather knows that Dylan is tired of losing every game to his brother. What does he whisper to Dylan?

    And here's the solution:

    Dylan should go first. By doing this, Dylan can guarantee a win by playing to a deliberate strategy. On his first turn, he can place a quarter right on the center of the table. Because the table is symmetric, whenever Austin places a quarter on the table, Dylan simply "mirrors" his brother’s placement around the center quarter when it is his turn. For example, if Austin places a quarter near a corner of the table, Dylan can place one on the opposite corner. This strategy ensures that even when Austin finds an open space, so can Dylan. As a result, Dylan gains victory, since Austin will run out of free space first!

    This one, from June 2016, requires a bit more math.

    Submitted by Robert B., NSA Applied Mathematician

    Following their latest trip, the 13 pirates of the ship, SIGINTIA, gather at their favorite tavern to discuss how to divvy up their plunder of gold coins. After much debate, Captain Code Breaker says, “Argggg, it must be evenly distributed amongst all of us. Argggg.” Hence, the captain begins to pass out the coins one by one as each pirate anxiously awaits her reward. However, when the captain gets close to the end of the pile, she realizes there are three extra coins.

    After a brief silence, one of the pirates says, “I deserve an extra coin because I loaded the ship while the rest of you slept.” Another pirate states, “Well, I should have an extra coin because I did all the cooking.” Eventually, a brawl ensues over who should get the remaining three coins. The tavern keeper, annoyed by the chaos, kicks out a pirate who has broken a table and who is forced to return her coins. Then the tavern owner yells, “Keep the peace or all of you must go!”

    The pirates return to their seats and the captain, left with only 12 total pirates, continues to distribute the coins - “one for you,” “one for you.” Now, as the pile is almost depleted, she realizes that there are five extra coins. Immediately, the pirates again argue over the five extra coins. The captain, fearing that they will be kicked out, grabs the angriest pirate and ushers her out of the tavern with no compensation. With only 11 pirates left, she resumes distribution. As the pile nears depletion, she sees that there won’t be any extra coins. The captain breathes a sigh of relief. No arguments occur and everyone goes to bed in peace.

    If there were less than 1,000 coins, how many did the pirates have to divvy up?

    See the rest of the story at Business Insider

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    Rihanna show

    • 2018 has been a significant year for the retail sector. Some of the nation's most established stores have learned that they have the unenviable choice to either adapt or die.
    • Many have taken lessons from the trendy young startups that have swooped in and redefined the way we shop. 
    • These are some of the brands that have exploded in popularity 2018.

    2018 has been a significant year for the retail sector.

    Wounded from the so-called retail apocalypse that defined 2017, some of the nation's most established brands have been faced with the fact that they either have to adapt or die. As a result, many have been forced to take lessons from trendy young startups that have swooped in and redefined the way we shop. 

    From Gucci and Balenciaga to Crocs and Glossier, these are some of the most explosively successful brands of 2018:

    SEE ALSO: 12 hot new brands that millennials can't get enough of


    After receiving a $500 million cash injection from the Carlyle Group in 2017, the company hit a $1 billion valuation. It has continued to grow throughout 2018, making the top 10 list of teens' favorite brands in four consecutive biannual surveys done by Piper Jaffray.

    This trendy streetwear brand is known for its product "drops," which have become some of the most anticipated events of the year for its followers.

    During the season, these drops happen every Thursday online and in stores. 


    Californian skater brand Vans has been around since the 1960s but has exploded in popularity in recent years. After it was acquired by VF Corporation in 2004, it went from selling 90% of its products in California to growing its reach across the globe, making the leap to Asia and Europe.

    According to Piper Jaffray's latest "Taking Stock With Teens" survey, it has had the fastest growth in popularity since the study began in 2000.

    The brand is double-dipping on two major trends in fashion at present: athleisure and a preference for vintage and retro styles.


    Crocs has been experiencing a comeback thanks to the "ugly fashion" movement.

    Sales were up 4.7% in the most recent quarter versus the year before, and its popularity has skyrocketed over the past year. According to Piper Jaffray's biannual survey of teen preferences, it now ranks 13th out of all footwear brands for teen popularity, up from the 27th and 38th position the year before.

    As a result, high-fashion designers have been eager to repurpose the brand as an ironic high-fashion icon. Balenciaga's $850 platform Crocs sold out almost instantly. A follow-up Balenciaga Crocs stiletto also went viral.




    See the rest of the story at Business Insider

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    US infantry St. Mihiel World War I

    When the US declared war on Germany on April 6, 1917, the Allies had already endured over three years of carnage.

    The famed Harlem Hellfighters were the first to join the fight on the frontlines under French command.

    As the Americans began to send more troops across the Atlantic, Germany was anxious to score a victory before the majority of their forces arrived. 

    In the midst of the Bolshevik Revolution, Russia could not sustain its war effort. The dissolution of its forces freed German soldiers to the east, and the Central Powers' ranks along the western front swelled.

    The plan for Kaiserschlacht, or "Kaiser's battle," was to conquer Paris, and end the war. 

    That plan backfired, and with the additional US troops, the Allies were able to counter a string of German offensives, starting with the first US-led assault in a small village near the Somme called Cantigny.

    Americans captured 100 German soldiers during their first offensive at Cantigny.

    Launched May 28, 1918, the Battle of Cantigny was America's first major offensive in World War I. 




    Americans show their strength at Cantigny, and prove their forces can stand alone.

    American forces seized the village of Cantigny in just over half an hour, and defended against several German counterattacks for the next two days.

    Under Army general John Pershing's orders not to surrender an inch, Americans held their positions at the cost of over 1,000 lives. 

    'Come on, you sons of bitches, do you want to live forever?'

    German reinforcements, recently arrived after their relocation from the eastern front, continued their offensive at Chateau-Thierry, and advanced within 50 miles of Paris before pausing in Belleau Woods. 

    It was there the Americans decided to attack. As they dug in to prepare for the days ahead, their French counterparts retreated, and advised the US Marines do the same. 

    On June 6, 2018, the US forces launched a three-week battle in which both sides would suffer debilitating losses.

    On the first day of fighting, US forces suffered over 1,000 casualties. The Germans defended against nine assaults, until June 26, when a combat report relayed the victory.

    Accounts vary as to the precise wording used by Marine Maj. Maurice Shearer, but the gist was this: "Woods now U.S. Marine Corps entirely."

    See the rest of the story at Business Insider

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    glossier 2391

    • Glossier, a cult-favorite beauty and skincare brand founded in 2014, just opened its first flagship store in New York City.
    • The company has raised $86 million in venture funding since 2014. 
    • The flagship store opened where Glossier's showroom has been for the past year. The space is designed to be a social space where customers can test makeup and hang out while shopping.
    • When we visited a day after it opened, it was already packed.

    Glossier, a previously online-only beauty and skincare brand founded in 2014, just opened its first flagship store in New York City. 

    Since the company first started in 2014, Glossier has raised a whopping $86 million in venture funding and gained a cult following among millennials. 

    The flagship store opened in the same spot in SoHo where Glossier's shoppable showroom has been since it opened in November 2017. More than half a million customers have come through that space since it opened, the company told The New York Times.

    The flagship is Glossier's second and largest permanent shop, as it already operates a storefront in Los Angeles. The interior is decorated with flowers and over-the-top displays, and employees wear bubblegum pink jumpsuits. The products in store aren't on shelves, but instead on communal tables with mirrors set up for shoppers to test the products. There's even a room with sinks and cleansers so that shoppers can wash off makeup they tested and try out more. 

    We went to the flagship store the day after it opened. Here's what it was like:

    SEE ALSO: 'We're living in the age of the remix': Fashion brands are making major changes to appeal to Gen Z in a new era of luxury

    DON'T MISS: These are the brands that blew up in 2018

    Glossier's flagship store is on Lafayette Street in SoHo, where its showroom had been located since November 2017.

    Walking through the doors, I was greeted by a pink staircase with bright lights and high ceilings.

    At the top of the stairs are employees greeting everyone by a big floral display.

    See the rest of the story at Business Insider

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    Humphrey Bogart Casablanca

    World War I ended 100 years ago Sunday. 

    Beginning in July 1914, the Great War lasted more than four years and killed an estimated 8.5 million soldiers and 13 million civilians. 

    And of the more than 65 million troops that were mobilized during the war, a handful of them were very famous, especially during the time period. 

    Here are 10 famous people who served during the Great War.

    SEE ALSO: The history of the US Army's uniforms since 1776, in images and depictions

    1. Ernest Hemingway

    Born in 1899, Ernest Hemingway was a leading American journalist and Pulitzer Prize-winning novelist.  

    Turned away from the US military because of an eye defection, Hemingway joined the American Red Cross as an ambulance driver during the war. 

    In 1918, Hemingway was injured by mortar fire in Italy, and his experiences during the Great War led him to write "A Farewell to Arms."

    He received the 1954 Nobel Prize in Literature. Hemingway committed suicide in Ketchum, Idaho, in 1961. 



    2. Humphrey Bogart

    Born in 1899, Humprey Bogart was an American actor known for films such as "Casablanca" and "The Maltese Falcon."

    In 1918, Bogart joined the US Navy, and spent most of his time during the war transporting troops back and forth between the US and Europe on the USS Leviathan, according to 

    There is some debate about whether Bogart's lip scar, which gave him a lisp, came during war-time. 

    Some said a German prisoner punched him, others that it was caused by shrapnel from a German shell that hit the Leviathan. Bogart himself said it happened when he was a kid, and that Hollywood played it up to make him appear tough. 

    Bogart died from esophageal cancer in Los Angeles in 1957. 

    3. F. Scott Fitzgerald

    Born in 1896, F. Scott Fitzgerald was an American writer most famous for the novel "The Great Gatsby."

    In 1917, Fitzgerald dropped out of Princeton to join the Army and was commissioned as a second lieutenant.

    But Fitzgerald never saw combat, as the armistice was signed shortly before he was deployed. 

    Before the war ended, Fitzgerald was nervous that he would die in battle and often wrote in his spare time in the hopes of leaving a legacy. These writings were the groundwork for his later novel “This Side of Paradise.”

    Fitzgerald was also friends with Hemingway, and the two writers spent much time as expatriates in Paris during the 1920s. The two friends were also part of what Gertrude Stein dubbed the "Lost Generation," a term she coined to define the generation that came of age during the Great War.

    Fitzgerald died of a heart attack in Hollwood in 1940. 

    See the rest of the story at Business Insider

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    Amazon Holiday Catalog13

    • Amazon will be mailing out a holiday toy catalog for the first time this year.
    • The catalog, called "A Holiday of Play," has more than 60 pages of toys and games. The catalog is similar to the now online-only Sears Wish Book and defunct Toys R Us catalogs. 
    • Amazon, like Walmart and Target, is fighting to win the billions of dollars in sales Toys R Us did in 2017. 
    • Here's what the catalog is like. 

    Amazon will be mailing out its first-ever holiday toy catalog to millions of shoppers this year. 

    The toy catalog, called "A Holiday of Play," has more than 60 pages of toys and games for shoppers to flip through. There's also a Kindle edition of the toy guide. Prices aren't listed in the catalog, but some of the featured toys also come with a QR code, allowing shoppers to instantly scan and shop for them on Amazon. Shoppers can also scan product images with their phones to find out more information on the Amazon app. 

    Amazon's toy catalog is reminiscent of the iconic holiday guides distributed by Sears and the now-defunct Toys R Us, with a similar retro look and hundreds of toys and games to choose from.

    As the holidays are approaching, Amazon is one of many retailers fighting for a piece of the billions of dollars in sales Toys R Us did in 2017. The catalog is another way for Amazon to reach customers that are missing Toys R Us. 

    Amazon's catalog is part of the e-commerce giant's recent push into physical retail, which has included opening a series of convenience stores, bookstores, and its new 4-star stores. The toy catalog will also be available in Amazon's 4-star stores and bookstores, according to CNBC.  

    Here's what Amazon's toy catalog is like.

    SEE ALSO: Sears will not be printing its iconic holiday Wish Book one year after bringing it back from the dead. Take a look at the catalogs through the years.

    Amazon's toy catalog, called "A Holiday of Play," is reminiscent of toy catalogs once distributed by Sears and Toys R Us.

    The first two pages of the catalog have information about shipping and returns, the Amazon app, Prime, and other features.

    Amazon's top toys, which include Lego sets, toy cars, and action figures, are listed at the front of the catalog.

    See the rest of the story at Business Insider

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    Tiny Home Jackson Hole Homeaway

    • Tiny houses are becoming increasingly popular around the world; their novelty makes for a unique vacation stay.
    • We teamed up with HomeAway to find some of the coolest tiny-home rentals around the world.
    • From a circus car in Germany to a cabin in Wyoming, one of these tiny homes could be your next getaway.

    Looking for something a little more novel than a traditional hotel or the tried-and-true Airbnb for your next vacation? Consider a tiny home.

    Living miniature, defined as residing in a space less than 600 square feet, has turned into a worldwide movement. The global tiny homes market is expected to increase by 7% over the next four years. 

    But you don't need to live in a tiny home to see what all the fuss is about. 

    We teamed up with HomeAway to find some of the coolest tiny home rentals on HomeAway and VRBO around the world, from a charming circus car in Germany to a luxury cabin in Jackson Hole, Wyoming, and ranked them by cost per night.

    Which one will be home to your future getaway?

    SEE ALSO: Here's what living in a tiny house is really like, according to people who traded their homes for minimalism

    DON'T MISS: See inside the 15 most expensive penthouses for sale in America

    Somerset, California — $72 per night

    An eco-friendly, off-the-grid tiny home that runs completely on solar power, this award-winning tiny home has a private deck and prime proximity to 50 vineyards.

    See the listing »

    Homer, Alaska — $76 per night

    See the rest of the story at Business Insider

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    Mercedes Benz AMG GT S

    • A car insurance premium is the rate an owner pays to activate an insurance policy, which protects them against accidents, damages, stolen vehicles, and other incidents. 
    • The car insurance website compared car insurance rates of more than 3,600 vehicle models across all 50 states to find out which cars are the most expensive and least expensive ones to insure.
    • The most expensive cars to insure are Mercedes-Benz models. Mercedes-Benz cars took up the top three spots in the "most expensive" list, and they ended up being included in just under half of the 20 spots.

    Car insurance premiums are important pieces of data for any prospective purchaser. A car insurance premium is the rate an owner pays to activate an insurance policy that protects them against accidents, damages, stolen vehicles, and other incidents. 

    The car insurance website compared car insurance rates of more than 3,600 vehicle models across all 50 states to find out which cars are the most expensive and least expensive ones to insure. The study included using quotes from six different insurance companies and averaging these premium numbers to get a comprehensive score set. 

    Read more:Tesla is outselling many of its luxury rivals, but it still lags behind Mercedes, BMW, and Lexus

    The most expensive cars to insure are Mercedes-Benz models. Mercedes-Benz cars took up the top three spots in the "most expensive" list, and they ended up being included in just under half of the 20 spots.

    The main contributor to their high insurance rate is the fact that these are high-end luxury cars that carry a bunch of trendy features that are often difficult to repair following an accident. 

    Aside from being luxurious, another feature that can make a car model expensive to insure is if it lacks a roof. Four convertibles made the list.

    "Convertibles are usually more expensive than a hardtop version and they are also more prone to theft and vandalism (it’s pretty easy to cut a soft top), which leads to more claims and higher premiums," Mark Valet at writes

    Take a look at the 20 most expensive cars to insure, below:  

    SEE ALSO: The 11 new cars people most regularly ditch after just one year of ownership

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    20. BMW 750l: $3,222 average premium

    19. Jaguar F-Type SVR: $3,2229 average premium

    18. Dodge Challenger SRT Demon: $3,299 average premium

    See the rest of the story at Business Insider

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