Daily Content Archive

(as of Sunday, July 29, 2012)
Word of the Day

scarecrow

Definition:(noun) An effigy in the shape of a man to frighten birds away from seeds.
Synonyms:straw man
Usage: She was determined, therefore, to contrive as lifelike a scarecrow as ever was seen … so that it should begin its sentinel's duty that very morning.
Article of the Day

The Gang of Four

The Gang of Four was an alliance of four Chinese political officials who rose to prominence during the Cultural Revolution but were later imprisoned for implementing the harsh policies of Mao Zedong, fomenting widespread civil unrest, and attempting to seize power. They had the youthful Red Guard persecute intellectuals and suppress a wide variety of traditional cultural activities. A month after Mao's death in 1976, the four were arrested. Among them was Mao's third wife. What happened to her? More...
This Day in History

National Aeronautics and Space Administration (NASA) Established (1958)

NASA is an agency of the US government charged with aeronautics research and the nation's civilian space program. During its history, it has been responsible for manned trips to the Moon, orbiting observatories, and unmanned programs that explored other planets and interplanetary space. Today, its goals include improving human understanding of the universe and establishing a permanent human presence in space. NASA was created by an act of Congress passed largely in response to what 1957 event? More...
Today's Birthday

Alexis de Tocqueville (1805)

Tocqueville was a French political scientist, historian, and politician. Born into an aristocratic family with ties to the king, his future in government was jeopardized by a revolution in 1830. To distance himself from the trying political situation at home, he embarked on a government-sanctioned mission to the US. Out of it came his best-known work, Democracy in America—the first analytical study of the strengths and weaknesses of US society. What conclusions did Tocqueville draw in it? More...
Quotation of the Day
One soweth and another reapeth is a verity that applies to evil as well as good.

George Eliot (1819-1880)

Idiom of the Day

have (hand)writing like chicken scratch

To have very poor, messy, and/or illegible handwriting, likened to the marks made in the dirt by a chicken. More...
Today's Holiday

Gilroy Garlic Festival

This event is a celebration of garlic in the California town, located in Santa Clara County, that calls itself the Garlic Capital of the World. The claim is made because 90 percent of America's garlic is grown and processed in the area. The highlight of the festival is Gourmet Alley with dozens of food booths that use eight tons of garlic in preparing various garlic-flavored dishes, including garlic ice cream. Other events are a Great Garlic Cook-off and Recipe Contest, arts and crafts exhibits, musical entertainment, and a barn dance. More...
In the News

ALS Patients Improve with Experimental Treatment

Preliminary results of a stem cell trial suggest that it holds promise for amyotrophic lateral sclerosis (ALS) patients. ALS, also known as Lou Gehrig's disease, is a neurodegenerative disease that leads to a progressive loss of the ability to move one's muscles and to eventual death. Though a final report will not be prepared until the end of the year, researchers are already seeing individual improvements in patients who received transplants of stem cells harvested from their own bone marrow. They are hopeful that the treatment will provide doctors with a way to stabilize, and possibly even cure, the disease. More...
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