I go on many, many random article adventures, to the point where I have the link to give me a random article bookmarked. I don't, let's say, "adventure" as much as I used to, but I have quite a nice collection of Wikipedia articles to share. Most, from stumbling into interesting things while random-article-ing. Many, from continuing down that Wikipedia rabbit hole. Some, just because they're fun, and others, because they are about something that is fun to know the name of, so you can call it out when you see it and look like a nerd to your friends. Enjoy.
(Also, did you know that there is a keyboard shortcut for random article when you're on Wikipedia? It's [Alt+Shift+X].)
Thank you to the list of culinary nuts page, by the way. Had it open the entire time while formatting the HTML on this site. My lighthouse, my guiding beacon.
There are two loose categories of article that I like to keep around: "idea articles", from which I yoinked a larger and more complex idea (even if still a simple one), and shorter "word articles", where I read them and went "huh, interesting, that's what that's called" (and, therefore, yoinked only a word). I will attempt to organise based on for what reason I had the article bookmarked and/or found it interesting when finding it.
beanbottles is not affiliated with Wikipedia! This site layout is for fun; I don't represent Wikipedia in any way.
The following are some longer articles relating to language.
- Phono-semantic matching, where a word as it is read is taken from one language and brought into another. This is where the term "mayday" comes from in English; the French "m'aider" was matched to a meaningless English word.2021.09.20
- Calque, not to be confused with claque. When a word or phrase is taken from one language and translated literally. See the list of calques for some really fun ones.2021.09.20
- Color term, discussing words for colours across languages. Interesting to see the similarities and differences, and the stages of colour in language.2023.04.28
- Polari, a cant that was used by "underclass" of society; actors, sex workers, gay people. The history is interesting, and of course the language itself is great to read about.2023.04.30
- List of gairaigo and wasei-eigo terms, which are foreign words borrowed into Japanese that often get given their own meanings, sometimes shifting a bit from the source. Take, for example, "no-to", from "note", meaning only "notebook" in Japanese, or "pinchi" from "pinch", meaning specifically "in a pinch", and not the rest of the word's meanings.2023.04.30
- List of linguistic example sentences, and oh there are so many...I love this article. English is such a silly language and it is my favourite :).2023.04.30
- James while John had had had had had had had had had had had a better effect on the teacher, also in the article above, but this is probably my favourite, uh. "English Language Moment TM". A lot of people know about the "buffalo buffalo..." one, but I think this one is much funnier.2023.04.30
- Kakekotoba, a type of wordplay found in Japanese poems.2023.04.30
- Ateji, the use of kanji to "make up" traditional kanji-based spellings for borrowed words. The most well known ones are the kanji words for the countries, but an interesting one is 瓦斯 for "gasu", (gas) which was borrowed.2023.04.30
- T–V distinction, an interesting trend for languages with levels of formality to have the informal pronoun "you" start with a "t", and the formal "you" start with a "v".2023.04.30
- Phonaesthetics, the study of what makes words beautiful.2023.04.30
- Pangram, which are sentences that contain every letter in a language. The interesting parts of this article are both the rarely-seen examples (other than "the quick brouwn fox..."), and the self-enumerating pangrams, which are messed up, I think. Too insane. Stop them.2023.05.04
The following are some shorter articles relating to language.
- Metathesis, the act of swapping sounds within a word, i.e., "nucular" instead of "nuclear" and "aks" instead of "ask".2023.04.28
- Vocable, a term describing a meaningful sound with no semantic meaning; i.e., sounds that mean things, but aren't words. "Um", "ah", "oops"; all vocables.2023.04.28
- Lenition, the tendency for consonants to change (either in the moment, under certain circumstances (such as after a certain sound) or across time) to becomes "softer", as they become easier to pronounce and langauge change is 90% of the time only following the path of least resistance.2023.04.30
- Gemination, the audible "doubling of consonants"; doesn't occur too much in English, but was quite surprised when I saw that it does happen; look at "midday". Not only a double "d" when written, but an audible verbal "skip" as it is in Japanese or other languages.2023.04.30
- Libfix, when an affix is created "artificially" by taking a cut-off part of a word used in a portmanteau (ususally), and then used as a prefix or suffix. "-athon" is one, from "marathon" as it was used in "walkathon". "-Copter" is one too, funnily enough; the word is "helico + pter", but the "-copter" was taken to create that suffix.2023.04.30
- Synecdoche, when a part of something or a characteristic of it is used to refer to the whole. Take "suits" when it means "businesspeople".2023.04.30
- Numeral prefix, is quite self-explanatory; I like the list that compares the English prefixes by their source language.2023.04.30
The following are some articles relating to typography.
- List of typographical symbols and punctuation marks, a fun list that has a lot of names for things that you don't really consider as having names. Some favourites are fleurons, lozenges, and dingbats.2023.04.29
- Swash (typography), those swooping serifs in cursive writing and fonts.2023.04.29
- Widows and orphans, when a paragraph ends on a line with only a single word in it, or crosses to the next page with only a single line.2023.04.30
- River (typography), when there is a noticeable vertical white gap through a text. So many things that you don't really think about out there, in terms of typesetting.2023.04.30
- Etaoin shrdlu, a printing error in which the letters 'etaoin shrdlu' are printed. Was kind of a meme a hundred years ago.2023.04.30
The following are some articles relating to philosophy.
- List of cognitive biases, which has far too many list items to count.2023.04.29
- The Last Question, a science-fiction book covering philosophical ideas, as all of Asimov's books do, to be fair.2023.04.29
- Boltzmann brain, one of my favourite things, lol. The idea that it is more likely, all things considered, for a complete human brain to suddenly appear in the middle of an empty universe than it is for an entire univere to form over billions of years to eventually contain 7 billion human brains, leading to the philosophical idea that it is quite likely (if we agree with this idea) that you, right now, reading this, are a brain in a vat that is plugged into a program/hallucinating being alive and reading this wiki page. I would've gone for a simulation that was a little more fun, to be honest, but hey, you do you.2023.04.29
The following are some longer articles relating to geography.
The following are some shorter articles relating to geography.
- Main stem, the part of a river that links from its drainage basin/origin and carries the main downstream flow.2023.04.30
- Tributary, streams that flow towards a main river from another water source.2023.04.30
- Distributary, offshoot streams that flow away from a main river.2023.04.30
- Estuary, an enclosed coastal environment where rivers and oceans meet.2023.04.30
- Chenier, a beachy stretch of land with swampy vegetation.2023.04.30
- Braided river, a network of river channels that interweave and are separated by small islands, to form a "braided" effect. Can you tell I went down a river rabbit hole with all of these entries.2023.04.30
The following are some articles relating to places.
- Lake Kaindy, a really beautiful lake.2021.09.20
- Ocetá Páramo, a really pretty hilly landscape.2021.09.20
- Cockshutt, Shropshire, Cockshutt. Cockshutt-cum-Petton.2023.04.30
- Dunmore Pineapple, a building with a massive pineapple motif on the roof. Pineapples were a sign of wealth, due to how expensive they were because of import costs, so rich people and larpers added pineapple motifs to their buildings. Still seen today.2023.05.04
- Lance Rocks, two rocks lying side by side in Antarctica. Literally zero images of them online; Google maps doesn't even have quality-enough satellite footage to see them. That just makes them even lonelier, I think...two of the loneliest rocks in the world...but at least they have each other...2023.05.10
The following are some longer articles relating to plants.
The following are some shorter articles relating to plants.
- Glossary of botanical terms, the motherlode.2023.04.30
- Scape (botany), a stem with no leaves (think like spring onions).2023.04.30
- Burl, or 'burr'; abnormal, round growths on tree trunks, caused by reasons including injury and fungus.2023.04.30
- Gall, swelling growths on plants, caused by reasons including insects and fungus.2023.04.30
- Catkin, the name of an inflorescence (cluster of flowers) with hidden or no petals. Think of pinecones or birch trees. Also has maybe my favourite illustration in existence on the page. Literally clutching my chest right now.2023.04.30
- Raceme, the name of an inflorescence (cluster of flowers) with stalks bearing the flowers. Has good diagrams showing the different types of flower clusters (such as catkins).2023.04.30
- Phyllode, a leaf stem on some plants that flattens and acts as a leaf for plant.2023.04.30
- Phyllotaxis, the way that leaves arrange themselves on a plant.2023.04.30
The following are some specific plants that are cool.
- Telipogon diabolicus, an orchid that is named for the fact that it looks like there's a little devil in the centre of the bloom. No images on the wiki page, but if you look the plant up, there are some examples. I was like "surely it can't really be a little devil." I was wrong.2023.04.30
- Garden roses, which is here because oh man, there sure are a lot of roses out there. Some real freaks on this page (like what is this. look it up and mentally 'how???').2023.04.30
- Corokia cotoneaster, is a tree that has branches with very consistent branching; not too many cool pictures on the article, but if you look it up, there are some fun examples.2023.04.30
The following are some articles relating to architecture.
- Dugout (shelter), a type of shelter that's built semi-underground.<2021.09.20
- Transom (architecture), the bar separating an entry door and the decorative window above it.<2021.09.20
- Sidelight, a window or windows that flank an entry door.<2021.09.20
- Stepped gable, a stepped design on a trianglar front of a house's roof.<2021.09.20
- Singer House, just a very beautiful building.<2021.09.20
- Ablaq, a decorative technique that involves alternating brick colours across layers.2023.05.01
- Witch window, because what the hell lol.2023.05.01
- Chimney breast, that's what it's called, huh.2023.05.01
- Area (architecture), an excavated area around a house that lets the light in for the basement.2023.05.01
- Piano nobile, the main floor in a palace; I find it interesting how you can tell what floor it is by the size of the windows.2023.05.01
The following are some articles relating to art.
- Raden, a form of decorative inlay, where mother of pearl is cut out and placed in a wooden frame. Normally used with lacquer to make lacquerware, so I propose this be named Nacrewear :). Spent a while watching a bunch of videos of this process, which are fun.2023.04.29
- Fayum mummy portraits, portraits created to cover a mummy's face. Makes me feel strange, looking at them; their style is quite 'modern' (that is to say, realistic). Really humanises people of so long ago, makes me feel lonely.2023.04.30
- Munsell color system, a colour space which organises colours in a nice way.2023.04.30
- The Sixty-nine Stations of the Kiso Kaidō, is a very pretty set of paintings.2023.05.01
- George Elbert Burr, an artist specialising in etchings, my favourite medium.2023.05.01
- Caspar David Friedrich, an artist specialising in landscapes.2023.05.01
- Gustave Doré, who is well-known, and with reason. Wood engravings are also a favourite medium of mine, and this guy's got that in droves.2023.05.01
The following are some other longer articles.
- Claque, not to be confused with calque. These were professional clappers for stage shows. The original paid audience.2021.09.20
- Jacques Lebaudy, a man who tried to start a kingdom. Wild article.2023.04.29
- Skeuomorph, a derivative object that retains parts of the older design, either for aesthetic, familiarity, or nostalgia. Think, for example, of save icons being floppy disks, or older "button" elements being raised and bevelled as if they were 3D.2023.04.29
- Fractal, which is an interesting article all by itself, of course, but adding it because when I read it there was actually an exclamatory sentence in it that did not get edited out for quite a while (maybe a year or so); here's the old version with the cute-as-hell "!".2023.04.29
- Galactic bulge, which okay, fine, did catch my eye because of the funny name and subheadings. uwu *nuzzles your bulgy wulgy* x3 *gets spaghettified by the black hole at its core* But, anyway, beyond that, an interesting read.2023.04.29
- Window tax, was a tax based on how many windows your house has. A really interesting workaround to income tax, and just sounds really funny to be honest.2023.04.29
- Hornbostel–Sachs, a classification system for instruments.2023.04.29
- The All-Joking, All-Drunken Synod of Fools and Jesters, because 1) hilarious, and 2) same.2023.04.29
- Dunbar's number, the suggested highest number of people a person can have stable social relationships with.2023.04.29
- Telling the bees, the practice of "telling" bees about notable events in the beekeeper's life, such as births, deaths, and marriages...cute...2023.04.29
- IP over Avian Carriers, is just the best thing. Not going to spoil much; please read it. Just know it involves internet connections and carrier pigeons. I am sure a picture is being painted here.2023.04.29
- Floating signifier, a word or phrase that points to something which does not have a collective set meaning in the minds of everyone; basically, everyone has a different image of it because it means different things. Hatsune Miku is a floating signifier; "Hatsune Miku" is a class of Vocaloid, but to each person she means different things (for example, she is my love <3).2023.04.29
- Just-noticeable difference, is the smallest amount something needs to be changed to be noticeable. Self-explanatory, but interesting examples.2023.04.29
- Weber–Fechner law, related to the above, this is the idea that as something get more (whether in number, scale, or size), more needs to change for the change to be noticeable (and vice-versa).2023.04.29
- Trojan Room coffee pot, was the first streamer. Move over Twitch.2023.04.29
- List of methods of torture, is pretty interesting to read through. Man, some wild stuff is done. Favourites (?) (if only for their name) include the pear of anguish, and of course, the cucking stool.2023.04.29
- Fuzzy concept, is a term for, well. It's quite self-evident, I'd say. Either way, interesting article, with my favourite part being the sandwich example.2023.04.29
- Handkerchief code, a code of handkerchiefs (wow, who would've guessed) that was used to discretely specify your availabilty for certain sexual acts or fetishes. Like flower language, but less pollen lol.2023.04.30
- Servotron, was a fun and kinda-cool band lol. Never listened to anything linked, but going by their choice of vibe, I'm sure it's great. I'm mostly here for the presentation and commitment to the bit.2023.04.30
- Packing problems, which can get pretty fun. Also see circle packing and sphere packing.2023.04.30
- Clothing in ancient Greece, which has a list that's interesting to look through.2023.05.01
- Praenomen, which was a personal name in Rome; some interesting history here.2023.04.30
- Long-term nuclear waste warning messages, of which most of everyone has seen "This place is not a place of honor." etc, but fewer people have seen all of the other measures. Reading through makes me feel...Something.2023.05.04
- Pillow fight flash mob, something that exists apparently, and should exist more in my opinion.2023.05.04
- Vkusno i tochka, a Russian chain restaurant that opened in place of a few McDonalds' after it left Russia due to the Ukraine invasion.2023.05.04
- Kleptopharmacophagy, in which freak butterflies cannibalise children.2023.05.04
- Category:Wikipedians open to trout slapping, not technically a Wikipedia article, but too good not to add.2023.05.07
- Timeline of the far future, should be added to the list of articles to not read as a 12 year old. Will mess you up. Fantastic article, though, along with the one below.2023.05.10; rec'd by pomelo
- Ultimate fate of the universe, should be added to the list of articles to not read as a 12 year old. Will mess you up. Fantastic article, though, along with the one above. Also recommending a good book on this: The End of Everything (Astrophysically Speaking), by Katie Mack.2023.05.10
- Femlin, and now for a complete 180 from the last two articles, these are little characters used for joke pages in Playboy magazine ages ago. Got this while random-article-ing and got mild-nudity-jumpscared. Otherwise, their design is lowkey kinda cute, lol.2023.05.10
- 2009 Norwegian spiral anomaly, was just a failed missile flight, but if you look up images, it is clear and believable why people that it was alien-related. A failed missile test should not look this cool.2023.06.01
The following are some other shorter articles.
- Lovelock (hair), a long, often braided, strand of hair kept over the left shoulder, to show devotion to a loved one.2023.04.29
- Frame story, also known as one of my favourite narrative devices :).2023.04.30
- Figure–ground (perception), the term for grouping things to a foreground and background.2023.04.30