The Most Googled Topic In Each State in 2017

iStock
iStock

A brand new year typically calls for fresh starts, but we’d be remiss if we headed into 2018 without first looking back at the trending topics that dominated our computer screens in 2017. For those looking to indulge their digital nostalgia, The Daily Dot analyzed browsing habits across the nation by assembling a list of the year’s biggest headlines, events, and trends. They used Google Trends to determine which of these searched-for topics were the most popular in each state, and broke down their findings in a handy map.

Among 2017’s most memorable moments was the total solar eclipse that passed through the U.S. on August 21, 2017. Residents of Wyoming, Arkansas, South Carolina, and Indiana were all caught up in the viewing craze, and Googling terms related to the natural phenomenon. (Internet users in Arkansas hopefully managed to procure eclipse glasses before the big day, as they were the ones searching “Eye damage from solar eclipses.”)

Meanwhile, Floridians kept tabs on hurricane-ravaged Puerto Rico, while New Mexico residents were curious about Samsung’s first foldable phone, the still-unreleased Galaxy X. Net neutrality was a hot topic in Iowa; New Hampshire residents mourned rocker Tom Petty’s October 2, 2017 death; and moviegoers in Utah couldn’t get enough of DC blockbuster Wonder WomanAnd amid 2017's numerous highs and lows, quirky topics like the Unicorn Frappuccino, a new Ken Doll’s questionable hairdo, and extinct giant penguins reigned supreme (and hopefully made people smile) in Washington, Ohio, and Michigan, respectively.

To see the most popular search term in your state, check out The Daily Dot’s full map here.

[h/t The Daily Dot]

This Outdoor Lantern Will Keep Mosquitoes Away—No Bug Spray Necessary

Thermacell, Amazon
Thermacell, Amazon

With summer comes outdoor activities, and with those activities come mosquito bites. If you're one of the unlucky people who seem to attract the insects, you may be tempted to lock yourself inside for the rest of the season. But you don't have to choose between comfort and having a cocktail on the porch, because this lamp from Thermacell ($25) keeps outdoor spaces mosquito-free without the mess of bug spray.

The device looks like an ordinary lantern you would display on a patio, but it works like bug repellent. When it's turned on, a fuel cartridge in the center provides the heat needed to activate a repellent mat on top of the lamp. Once activated, the repellent in the mat creates a 15-by-15-foot bubble of protection that repels any mosquitos nearby, making it a great option for camping trips, days by the pool, and backyard barbecues.

Mosquito repellent lantern.

Unlike some other mosquito repellents, this lantern is clean, safe, and scent-free. It also provides light like a real lamp, so you can keep pests away without ruining your backyard's ambience.

The Thermacell mosquito repellent lantern is now available on Amazon. If you've already suffered your first mosquito bites of the summer, here's some insight into why that itch can be so excruciating.

This article contains affiliate links to products selected by our editors. Mental Floss may receive a commission for purchases made through these links.

No Squawking, Please: A Backyard Bird Library Is the Star of This Livestream

Bird Library, YouTube
Bird Library, YouTube

Many people discovered backyard birding when they were quarantined in their homes at the start of the COVID-19 pandemic. Even if you have a vibrant wildlife population in your area, the Bird Library webcam is worth checking out. As Atlas Obscura reports, the bird feeder at the focus of the livestream resembles a tiny library where feathered guests can misbehave.

Librarian Rebecca Flowers and woodworker Kevin Cwalina were inspired to build the Bird Library in 2015. Located in a backyard in Charlottesville, Virginia, it features a miniature reading chair, bookshelves, and a reception desk. The decorations are even updated to match the seasons; the feeder currently sports a banner that says "Summer Reading." The main differences setting it apart from a real library are the bird seed scattered on the floor and the avian visitors.

The Bird Library attracts a diverse collection of patrons. Sparrows, cardinals, and mourning doves have been recorded perching on the librarian's desk and checking out the reading materials. The occasional squirrel has also been known to stop by.

Live video of the feeder streams on the Bird Library's YouTube page and website 24 hours a day, 7 days a week. You can play the video below to check in on the current guests. If the backyard Bird Library has inspired you to find birds closer to home, here's some gear for beginner naturalists.

[h/t Atlas Obscura]