Daily Content Archive

(as of Wednesday, November 27, 2013)
Word of the Day

android

Definition:(noun) An automaton that resembles a human being.
Synonyms:humanoid, mechanical man
Usage: I programmed the android to mimic my expressions, but something about its subtly inhuman smile leaves me, a scientist, unsettled.
Article of the Day

Pecking Order

A pecking order is a basic pattern of social organization within a flock of poultry in which dominance is established by aggression—members maintain their status by pecking those lower in rank without fear of retaliation and by submitting to pecks from those of higher rank. Nowadays, the term is used somewhat colloquially to describe social hierarchies among other creatures, including humans, and has even been applied to the finance industry. Who coined the term? More...
This Day in History

Harvey Milk and George Moscone Are Assassinated (1978)

After gaining a following as a leader of San Francisco's gay community, Milk was elected to the city's Board of Supervisors in 1977, becoming one of the first openly gay elected officials in US history. In 1978, he and Moscone, the city's mayor, were shot and killed in City Hall by Dan White, a former city supervisor. White's conviction on the less serious charge of voluntary manslaughter sparked riots in the city. What now infamous defense did White's attorneys present at his murder trial? More...
Today's Birthday

Chaim Weizmann (1874)

A Russian-born chemist, Weizmann became a British subject in 1910, developed a process for creating a synthetic acetone to be used in the manufacture of explosives in 1912, and was director of the British admiralty laboratories for much of WWI. An active Zionist, Weizmann helped negotiate the 1917 Balfour Declaration pronouncing British support of a Jewish homeland in Palestine. When the republic of Israel was eventually founded, he was elected its first president. What is the Weizmann organism? More...
Quotation of the Day
I forget who it was that recommended men for their soul's good to do each day two things they disliked: it was a wise man, and it is a precept that I have followed scrupulously; for every day I have got up and I have gone to bed.

W. Somerset Maugham (1874-1965)

Idiom of the Day

No good deed goes unpunished.

Due to the cruelty, ignorance, or selfishness of the world or others, one's good deeds or good intentions will often result in more trouble than they are worth. An ironic and sardonic twist on the more standard moral that "no good deed goes unrewarded." More...
Today's Holiday

Lopburi Monkey Banquet (2016)

Yongyuth Kijwattananuson first offered this banquet to the long-tailed macaque monkeys who live in the city of Lop Buri, Thailand, in 1988, to thank them for making his hotel so attractive to visitors. It has since become an institution, especially for the hundreds of monkeys who normally spend their time begging and stealing food from townspeople and tourists. Dozens of chefs prepare numerous dishes featuring fruit and vegetables on tables covered with red tablecloths. The monkeys eventually approach the tables to feast on the offerings, playing and throwing food in the process. More...
In the News

Amsterdam Paying Alcoholics in Beer to Clean Streets

An unorthodox program in Amsterdam that employs alcoholics to clean the streets and pays them in cash, tobacco, and beer is raising a few eyebrows. The program was developed because alcoholics in Amsterdam's Oosterpark were becoming a regular nuisance—getting into fights, being noisy, making lewd comments to passing women—and it was thought that street cleaning would keep them occupied and out of trouble. Still, the practice of enticing addicts to work with promises of the very substance to which they are addicted does not sit well with some. More...
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