Interesting Facts

7:07 AM Amer Bekic 0 Comments

1. Adidas and Puma were started by two brothers.

Dassler shoes was a shoe company owned by Rudolf and Adolf Dassler, two German businessmen which flourished after Jesse Owens, record-breaking Olympic champion won 4 golds wearing Dassler shoes. Rudolf, the younger one was always in the shadow of his elder brother and the war only exacerbated this situation. Further complications arose when Rudolf, captured by American troops was suspected of being a member of the SS - based on information supposedly provided by Adolf. An interesting anecdote that serves as the main breaking point in their relationship was during an Allied bomb attack in 1943 when Adi (Adolf) and his wife climbed into a bomb shelter that Rudolf and his family were already in: "The dirty bastards are back again," Adi said, apparently referring to the Allied war planes, but Rudolf was convinced his brother meant him and his family. Following World War II, the brothers split to form their respective shoe companies - Adidas (Adi + Dassler) and Puma (which was initially called Ruda - for Rudolf Dassler). They're now two of the biggest competitors in the sports equipment market. 

2. Hotmail was started by an Indian -Sabeer Bhatia

Sabeer Bhatia was an Indian-American entrepreneur who along with Jack Smith started Hotmail which is now the second-largest email provider with more than 369 million subscribers.  As President and CEO, he guided Hotmail's rapid rise to industry leadership and its eventual acquisition by Microsoft in 1998. Bhatia worked at Microsoft for a little over a year after the Hotmail acquisition and in April 1999, he left Microsoft to start another venture, Arzoo Inc, an e-commerce firm. 

 3. The words "sinister" and "dexter" (root of "dexterity") originally meant "left-handed and "right-handed" respectively.

Historically, the left side, and subsequently left-handedness, was considered negative in many cultures. The Latin word sinistra originally meant "left" but took on meanings of "evil" or "unlucky" by the Classical Latin era, and this double meaning survives in European derivatives of Latin, and in the English word "sinister". And in contrast, "dexter" coming form the Latin word dexteritatem (sourced from Old French destre, Spanish diestro, etc.) which means "right" eventually took on to mean "proper" and eventually now stands at  meaning one is adroit at a particular task. It's amazing how these two apparently innocuous words transform to mean what they mean today thanks to dogmatic beliefs prevailing during the Middle ages (which was that right was auspicious and proper while left was unlucky and unnatural).