Daily Content Archive

(as of Sunday, October 26, 2014)
Word of the Day

whet

Definition:(verb) To make more keen; stimulate.
Synonyms:quicken, pique
Usage: The aroma of frying bacon whetted my appetite.
Article of the Day

The Roof, the Roof, the Roof (of My Mouth) Is on Fire!

The burning sensation that engulfs your mouth when you eat a chili pepper is caused by the extremely pungent compound capsaicin. In 1912, Wilber Lincoln Scoville devised a system for ranking the relative spiciness of different peppers based on the degree of dilution necessary for a panel of taste testers to no longer feel the "heat" when sipping a pepper extract. The higher a pepper's measurement in Scoville units, the hotter it is. What are some of the world's hottest peppers? More...
This Day in History

Pony Express Announces Its Closure (1861)

At its inception in 1860, the Pony Express operated between St. Joseph, Missouri—the western end of a telegraph line—and Sacramento, California. Changing horses at stations roughly 10–15 miles (16–24 km) apart, riders carried the mail a distance of 1,800 miles (2,900 km) in about eight days, often traveling through hostile Native American territory. Though it provided an important mail link with the West, it was a financial failure, and the Pony Express announced its closure two days after what? More...
Today's Birthday

Charles William Post (1854)

Post was an American breakfast cereal manufacturer. In the 1880s, while being treated by John H. Kellogg at a health sanitarium, he developed an interest in producing healthful foods like those served by Kellogg. In 1891, he established La Vita Inn, an institute for healing by mental suggestion. After experimenting with breakfast foods, he invented Postum, a coffee substitute after which he named his company, Postum Cereal Co., the precursor to General Foods Corp. What cereals did Post invent? More...
Quotation of the Day
A jest's prosperity lies in the ear of him that hears it, Never in the tongue of him that makes it.

William Shakespeare (1564-1616)

Today's Holiday

Austria National Day (2015)

National Day commemorates the day in 1955 when Soviet occupation forces left Austria after taking control in 1945. The Austrian State Treaty of May 15, 1955, ensured that Austrians would regain sovereignty over their country on July 27. By October 26, it was once again a free, independent country. Although it is a national holiday in Austria, people do not get the day off from school or work, mainly because of the idea that one's country is best served by working. Schools hold special presentations, and the president delivers a speech. More...
In the News

Ancient Easter Islanders Mingled with South Americans

Easter Island is perhaps best known for its mysterious, monolithic stone statues that have been the subject of countless investigations, but the ancient Polynesian people who populated the island are also a focus of study. Easter Island is separated from South America by 2,300 miles (3,700 km) of ocean, ostensibly leaving its population fairly isolated prior to the arrival of Westerners in 1722. However, genetic analysis shows that the islanders had intimate contact with native South Americans sometime between 1300 and 1500, suggesting that a migration route between Polynesia and the Americas had been established by this period. More...
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