Daily Content Archive

(as of Thursday, October 30, 2014)
Word of the Day

iota

Definition:(noun) A very small amount; a bit.
Synonyms:scintilla, shred, smidgeon, whit
Usage: There was not an iota of truth to that tale.
Article of the Day

Skunks

These small black-and-white mammals are best known for the foul-smelling oily liquid they expel when threatened. Skunks do not make use of this weapon unless severely provoked and then only after raising their tails in a warning display. Most animals quickly learn to avoid skunks because the odor of skunk spray is so strong. In addition to stinking, the spray causes choking and tearing of the eyes. What do researchers believe is essential to successfully neutralizing the skunk smell? More...
This Day in History

Orson Welles Broadcasts The War of the Worlds (1938)

On the night before Halloween in 1938, many listeners tuned in late to Welles' Mercury Theatre on the Air, missing the program's introduction announcing that it would be broadcasting an adaptation of H. G. Wells' The War of the Worlds. The innovative format, which featured news segments reporting a Martian invasion, was so convincing that it panicked the listening public and brought national attention to Welles. What urban legends exist about what happened during the broadcast? More...
Today's Birthday

Georges Gilles de la Tourette (1857)

Tourette syndrome is a rare neurological disease characterized by repetitive tics, movement disorders, uncontrolled grunts, and, occasionally, verbal obscenities. It is named for French neurologist Georges Gilles de la Tourette, who first described it in the 1880s. Apart from his clinical work, Tourette lectured on a variety of topics, including the medical and legal ramifications of mesmerism, now called hypnosis. In the 1890s, one of Tourette's former patients shot him in the head. Why? More...
Quotation of the Day
Beauty is all very well at first sight; but whoever looks at it when it has been in the house three days?

George Bernard Shaw (1856-1950)

Today's Holiday

American Royal Livestock, Horse Show and Rodeo (2015)

Also known as the American Royal, or simply the Royal, this is the oldest, and one of the largest, livestock shows and rodeos in the United States, dating back to the period just after the Civil War. The main events occur in October and November. The American Royal Rodeo is the final rodeo of the season on the professional circuit, featuring over 700 professional riders and offering more than $100,000 in prize money. There are also livestock auctions, horse and livestock shows, country music concerts, barbecue competitions, and a parade through downtown Kansas City. More...
In the News

More Than 100 Feared Dead in Sri Lanka Landslide

Monsoon rains triggered a landslide on a Sri Lankan tea plantation that engulfed about 150 houses, killing perhaps 100 or more residents. Bad weather hampered rescue efforts, and only 10 people were confirmed dead by the end of the first day of searching. However, hundreds remain missing. Most of the casualties are believed to be adults, as many children were already at school—outside the affected area—by the time the landslide struck. Though this likely saved their lives, it has also probably left a good many of them orphans. More...
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