Daily Content Archive

(as of Saturday, October 1, 2016)
Word of the Day

bunsen

Definition:(noun) A gas burner used in laboratories; has an air valve to regulate the mixture of gas and air.
Synonyms:etna
Usage: I accidentally singed my eyebrows while lighting my bunsen in chemistry class.
Daily Grammar Lesson

Prepositional Phrases

A prepositional phrase is made up of at least a preposition and its object, which can be a noun, pronoun, or a noun phrase. What is an adjectival prepositional phrase? More...
Article of the Day

Head Transplants

A head transplant is a surgical operation involving the replacement of one organism's head with another's. The first successful head transplant took place in the 1970s, when the head of a monkey was transplanted onto another's body. The animal retained most of its senses but was paralyzed below the attachment site. Though still hypothetical for humans, proponents believe the procedure can help people facing widespread organ failure. What has prevented human head transplants from taking place? More...
This Day in History

Siemens & Halske Telegraph Construction Company Is Founded (1847)

Siemens AG is Europe's largest engineering conglomerate. It was originally founded to build telegraph installations, but under Werner Siemens and his three brothers, it expanded to produce cables, telephones, electric power, and electric lighting. The company built the first long-distance telegraph line in Europe, followed by the monumental Indo-European telegraph line that stretched from Calcutta, India, to London, England. What scandal tainted the company's reputation in the 1940s? More...
Today's Birthday

Bonnie Parker (1910)

Bonnie Parker was the female half of the notorious Depression-era criminal duo "Bonnie and Clyde." She met Clyde Barrow in 1930 and soon became his lover as well as his partner in crime. In 1932, the pair began a 21-month crime spree—which ended when they were killed in a police ambush—that involved robberies, shootouts, and murders. Their activities were widely publicized, and they soon became America's most famous and romanticized outlaws. How did Bonnie and Clyde allegedly meet? More...
Quotation of the Day
The properties of ink are peculiar and contradictory: it may be used to make reputations and unmake them; to blacken them and to make them white; but it is most generally and acceptably employed as a mortar to bind together the stones of an edifice of fame, and as a whitewash to conceal afterward the rascal quality of the material.

Ambrose Bierce (1842-1914)

Idiom of the Day

scare (someone) silly

To shock or frighten someone very suddenly and/or severely. (Hyperbolically alludes to frightening someone so severely as to cause him or her to lose his or her mind.) More...
Today's Holiday

International Day of Older Persons (2018)

The United Nations General Assembly decided to set aside October 1 as International Day for the Elderly in 1990 (later designated as the International Day of Older Persons). By designating a day when governments are supposed to focus on what they can do to provide for the elderly, the U.N. hopes not only to forestall problems related to the aging of the population but to focus attention on the promise that a maturing population holds for social undertakings. The United Nations also set aside the year 1999 as the International Year of Older Persons. More...
Word Trivia

Today's topic: prize

athlete - Derived from Greek athlon, "prize" or "contest"—which also gives us triathlon (etc.); it should be pronounced ATH-leet—with two syllables, not three. More...

cakewalk - Started out as a competitive dance whose winner got a cake as a prize. More...

premium - First meant "prize, reward." More...

taking the cake - Once meant literally winning the prize of a cake, awarded in a cakewalk. More...

In the News

Time to Change the Ink in the Bone Printer

Artificial bone seemed to be a settled issue in academia; there was a sense that nothing was left to be invented. But then Northwestern University materials scientists began talking to surgeons. Over the course of 100 interviews they realized that far from ... More...
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