Daily Content Archive

(as of Wednesday, February 10, 2016)
Word of the Day

curlicue

Definition:(noun) A fancy twist or curl, such as a flourish made with a pen.
Synonyms:squiggle
Usage: Her penmanship was beautiful, but with so many curlicues, it was hard to read.
Article of the Day

Evidence of Alien Life?

A pulsar is a rapidly spinning neutron star that emits radiation in narrow beams focused by the star's magnetic field. Because the pulsar's magnetic poles do not align with the poles of its rotational axis, the beams sweep around like the beacon of a lighthouse and are thus observed on Earth as short, regular pulses. Some scientists initially suggested that extraterrestrial civilizations were the source of the strange signals and thus dubbed the first pulsar LGM-1, which is an acronym for what? More...
This Day in History

HMS Dreadnought Is Launched (1906)

The HMS Dreadnought of the Royal Navy was a battleship that revolutionized naval power when it entered service in 1906. Dreadnought represented such a marked advance in naval technology that its name came to be associated with an entire generation of battleships, the "dreadnoughts," as well as the class of ships named for it, while the generation of ships it made obsolete became known as "pre-dreadnoughts." What features made the Dreadnought so advanced? More...
Today's Birthday

Boris Pasternak (1890)

Pasternak was a Russian author whose novel Doctor Zhivago, an epic of wandering, spiritual isolation and love amid the harshness of the revolution and its aftermath, became a bestseller in the West but was circulated only in secrecy in the Soviet Union until 1987. Pasternak was awarded the Nobel Prize for Literature in 1958, but he was forced to decline it because of Soviet opposition to his work. Why was Pasternak's name said to have been crossed off an execution list by Joseph Stalin? More...
Quotation of the Day
It is a funny thing about life; if you refuse to accept anything but the best you very often get it.

W. Somerset Maugham (1874-1965)

Idiom of the Day

a bit dicey

Carrying a certain degree of risk or danger; uncertain of a favorable outcome. More...
Today's Holiday

Ash Wednesday

Ash Wednesday is the first day of Lent in the West. Pope Gregory I is credited with having introduced the ceremony that gives this day its name. When public penitents came to the church for forgiveness, the priest would take some ash (made by burning the palms used on Palm Sunday of the previous year) and mark their foreheads with the sign of the cross as a reminder that they were but ashes and dust. Eventually, the practice was extended to include all who wished to receive ashes. In the East, ashes are not used, and Lent begins on the Monday before Ash Wednesday. More...
In the News

What the Earth Will Be Like in 10000 Years, According to Scientists

A large group of climate scientists has made a bracing statement in the journal Nature Climate Change, arguing that we are mistaken if we think global warming is only a matter of the next 100 years or so — in fact, they say, we are locking in changes ... More...
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