Daily Content Archive

(as of Wednesday, January 19, 2011)
Word of the Day

enshrine

Definition:(verb) Hold sacred.
Synonyms:saint
Usage: The apartheid system enshrines racism.
Article of the Day

Alternative Biochemistry

Theories about extraterrestrial life forms whose biochemistries differ radically from those on Earth have given rise to alternative biochemistry, a speculative science that often appears in works of science fiction. Common examples proposed by scientists in this field include life forms that use elements other than carbon to construct primary cellular structures or those that use solvents other than water. Why is the silicon atom considered a possible basis for an alternative biochemical system? More...
This Day in History

Apple Lisa Launched (1983)

In 1983, after five years of development, Apple released the Lisa, the first personal computer with a graphical user interface. Although the Lisa was a commercial failure—due in part to its initial price tag of $9,995—it had a significant impact on the computer industry. It is often rumored to have been named after the first daughter of Apple's Steve Jobs, though several acronyms have been ascribed to the name. What project did Jobs join after being forced out of the Lisa project? More...
Today's Birthday

James Watt (1736)

A largely self-taught Scottish engineer and inventor, Watt greatly impacted the Industrial Revolution with his development of the Watt engine. Asked to repair a model of Thomas Newcomen's steam engine, he instead made improvements to it that resulted in a new type of engine. One such design enhancement, the separate condenser, radically improved the power, efficiency, and cost-effectiveness of steam engines. The watt, a unit of power, is named for him. What other unit of power did he develop? More...
Quotation of the Day
The offhand decision of some commonplace mind high in office at a critical moment influences the course of events for a hundred years.

Thomas Hardy (1840-1928)

Idiom of the Day

home, James (, and don't spare the horses)

A humorous directive for a driver to take one home directly and without delay. More...
Today's Holiday

Bonfim Festival (Festa do Bonfim) (2017)

There is a church in Salvador, Bahia, Brazil, known as Our Lord of the Happy Ending (bonfim). Today during the Bonfim Festival, hundreds of Brazilian women dress in the traditional white dresses of colonial Bahia and form a procession to the church. The bahianas balance jars of water, scented with blossoms, on their heads. The washing of the steps at Bonfim Basilica on the second Thursday after Epiphany is the highlight of the festival. More...
In the News

Chickens that Cannot Spread Bird Flu Created

Scientists have developed genetically modified chickens that cannot transmit avian influenza, also known as bird flu, to other birds. They did this by breeding chickens with a piece of DNA that produces a "decoy" molecule that mimics the region of the flu virus genome that controls virus replication. When infected with bird flu, the genetically modified chickens became sick and died but did not spread the infection to other chickens. More...
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