Daily Content Archive

(as of Sunday, December 28, 2014)
Word of the Day

circumspect

Definition:(adjective) Heedful of circumstances and potential consequences; prudent.
Synonyms:discreet
Usage: Because the drug was shown to have adverse side effects, physicians are now more circumspect about recommending its use.
Article of the Day

Swiss Cheese

Swiss cheese is the generic name in the US for several related varieties of cheese that resemble Switzerland's Emmentaler cheese. The cheese's distinctive holes, which are called "eyes," are formed during ripening when the bacterium used to produce the cheese releases carbon dioxide gas that causes large bubbles. In general, the larger the eyes, the more pronounced the cheese's flavor, although large eyes make the cheese more difficult to slice. Swiss cheese without eyes is known as what? More...
This Day in History

Lumière Brothers' First Film Screening for a Paying Public Audience (1895)

In 1882, French inventor Louis Lumière developed a method of making photographic plates. By 1894, he and his brother August were producing 15 million plates a year. They worked on improving Edison's kinetoscope, and, in 1895, patented their combination movie camera and projector, the Cinématographe. Their 46-second film La Sortie des ouvriers de l'usine Lumière is considered the first motion picture and was one of 10 included in their first public film screening. What is its subject? More...
Today's Birthday

John von Neumann (1903)

Neumann was a Hungarian-born American mathematician. He emigrated to the US in 1930 to teach at Princeton University and was among the original faculty of its Institute for Advanced Study. He solved one of David Hilbert's 23 theoretical problems, collaborated on an algebraic ring with profound applications in quantum physics, and helped develop the atomic bomb. He later made major contributions to the development of computers. What branch of applied mathematics did he help found? More...
Quotation of the Day
Life is a voyage that's homeward bound.

Herman Melville (1819-1891)

Idiom of the Day

hide and seek

A situation in which one party is constantly evading or avoiding another. (A reference to the children's game "hide and go seek.") Often used with the verb "play." More...
Today's Holiday

Fifth Night of Hanukkah (2016)

Hanukkah commemorates the successful rebellion of the Jews against the Syrians in the Maccabean War of 162 BCE, but the military associations are played down. What is really being celebrated is the survival of Judaism. Jewish families today celebrate this holiday by lighting a special Hanukkah menorah, a candelabrum with holders for eight candles, one for each day of celebration, plus a ninth, the shammash, used to light the others. A special prayer is recited during the lighting, and, while the candles burn, it is a time for songs and games, including the four-sided toy called the dreidel. More...
In the News

Birds Heard Tornados, Flew to Safety

Just a day before a devastating tornado outbreak swept through the US this year, a handful of songbirds in the region evacuated by flying hundreds of miles away. The scientists tracking the birds as part of a larger study speculate that they sensed the approaching twisters by detecting tornado-produced infrasound, a low frequency noise that can travel thousands of miles. The birds fled just days after finishing their 3,100-mile (5,000-km) seasonal migration from Colombia. They then flew 400 miles (700 km) south to the Gulf of Mexico, and returned almost immediately after the storms ended. More...
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