Daily Content Archive

(as of Tuesday, June 24, 2014)
Word of the Day

contrivance

Definition:(noun) An elaborate or deceitful plan or expedient.
Synonyms:stratagem, plan, design, measure, scheme, trick, plot, dodge, expedient, ruse, artifice, machination
Usage: This "shortage" is nothing more than a contrivance to raise prices.
Article of the Day

Mojave Desert

The Mojave Desert occupies a significant portion of southeastern California and parts of Utah, Nevada, and Arizona. It is named for the Mojave tribe of Native Americans, who made it their home. It is also home to the world's largest Joshua tree forest and the third-tallest dunes in North America, the 600-foot-high Kelso Dunes. The desert's Death Valley, the lowest, hottest, driest area of North America, has recorded some of the world's highest air temperatures. What is the Mojave's largest city? More...
This Day in History

One of the First Major Outbreaks of St. John's Dance (1374)

Germany was the site of one of the first outbreaks of dancing mania, a phenomenon seen primarily in mainland Europe between the 14th and 17th centuries. During such outbreaks, groups of up to thousands of people would dance uncontrollably, screaming, shouting, and claiming to have visions until they collapsed from exhaustion. Initially considered a curse sent by a saint, usually St. John the Baptist, it was called "St. John's Dance." To what do researchers now attribute the strange behavior? More...
Today's Birthday

Ernst Heinrich Weber (1795)

Weber was a German physiologist who is known for his work on touch and for the formulation of Weber's law—which states that the increase in stimulus necessary to produce an increase in sensation is not fixed but depends on the strength of the preceding stimulus. Weber's law led to the discipline of psychophysics and serves as the basis of the scales used to measure the loudness of sounds. He is considered a founder of experimental psychology and is also known for what discoveries in anatomy? More...
Quotation of the Day
Why has government been instituted at all? Because the passions of men will not conform to the dictates of reason and justice, without constraint.

Alexander Hamilton (1755-1804)

Idiom of the Day

go out with a bang

To finish or cease doing something in a spectacular, great, or exciting manner. More...
Today's Holiday

Venezuela Battle of Carabobo Day

The Battle of Carabobo was fought in Venezuela on June 24, 1821, between the Spanish and the Venezuelan freedom fighters, led by Simón Bolívar. Their victory led to the independence of Venezuela. At the site of the battle is the Alley of Glory. It leads to the Triumphal Arch, which features two female figures representing peace and victory. The Battle of Carabobo Day is marked by a military parade in Carabobo. More...
In the News

Tanning Appears Addictive

That "healthy glow" many love has proved to be less than healthy—the link between excessive ultraviolet (UV) exposure and skin cancer is well established—so why do they continue to tan? One possibility is that they are addicts. Researchers found that chronic exposure to UV radiation triggers the release of endorphins, so-called feel-good hormones, in mice. The regular exposure leads to physical dependence so strong that the animals exhibit withdrawal symptoms like shaking, tremors, and teeth chattering when those endorphins are blocked. Mice and humans have a similar biological response to UV exposure, meaning that tanning may be similarly addictive in people. More...
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