Daily Content Archive

(as of Monday, September 30, 2013)
Word of the Day

hypothecate

Definition:(verb) To believe especially on uncertain or tentative grounds.
Synonyms:conjecture, speculate, theorize, suppose
Usage: Dr. Jones was quick to hypothecate that the unexpected chemical reaction was the result of student tampering, even though no one had been seen messing around with his equipment.
Article of the Day

The Lotus Effect

When water hits a lotus leaf, it pools up or rolls right off. This so-called lotus effect is due to a complex system of microscopic bumps on the leaf's waxy surface. These superhydrophobic structures protect the lotus from pathogens like fungi, which are easily swept off its leaves by water droplets. Although the lotus effect has been known in Asia for millennia—and was even noted in ancient Hindu texts—it was only scientifically understood in the early 1970s, thanks to the invention of what? More...
This Day in History

Film Icon James Dean Killed in Car Crash (1955)

Though he would become one of the most iconic actors in the history of Hollywood, Dean starred in only three movies—East of Eden, Rebel Without a Cause, and Giant. The moody actor was acclaimed as the epitome of the mid-1950s, representing the alienated American youth of the time. In 1955, his career and life were cut short when he was killed in a highway crash while driving his Porsche to compete in a racing event. He was just 24. What "curse" is associated with his death? More...
Today's Birthday

Truman Capote (1924)

Capote's first novel, Other Voices, Other Rooms, launched a literary career that included the novella Breakfast at Tiffany's and his innovative "nonfiction novel" In Cold Blood, a chilling account of the senseless, brutal murder of a Kansas family that is widely considered his finest work. Capote cultivated celebrity and was famous in later years for his jet-setting lifestyle as well as his writing. Capote was reportedly the inspiration for a character in what famous novel? More...
Quotation of the Day
He had discovered a great law of human action, without knowing it—namely, that in order to make a man or a boy covet a thing, it is only necessary to make the thing difficult to attain.

Mark Twain (1835-1910)

Today's Holiday

Botswana Independence Day (2015)

Botswana became independent from Great Britain on September 30, 1966. Since 1885, the region had been a British colony called the Bechuanaland Protectorate. The biggest Independence Day festivities are held in the capital city of Gaberone, and include the singing of the national anthem, "Fatshe La Rona" (Blessed Country). More...
In the News

Don't Drink the Holy Water

Holy water may be used to cleanse the soul, but the water itself is often far from clean. A vast majority of the holy springs and fonts tested at Austrian churches and chapels were found to be contaminated with fecal matter, likely the result of poor hygiene. Agricultural nitrates and diarrhea-causing bacteria were also frequently present in samples. To minimize issues of contamination, one priest has invented a holy water dispenser that releases drops of water instead of having the faithful dip their potentially dirty hands into the water. More...
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