Daily Content Archive

(as of Wednesday, December 2, 2015)
Word of the Day

discomfit

Definition:(verb) To make uneasy or perplexed; disconcert.
Synonyms:discompose, untune, upset, disconcert
Usage: Her extreme candor would often discomfit strangers who suddenly found themselves privy to her most private thoughts.
Daily Grammar Lesson

Infinitives

An infinitive is the most basic form of a verb. It is "unmarked" (not conjugated for tense or person), and it is preceded by the particle "to." What is a split infinitive? More...
Article of the Day

La Tomatina

Approximately 30,000 people participate in La Tomatina, an annual festival held on the last Wednesday in August in the Spanish town of Buñol. A weeklong festival features music, parades, dancing, and fireworks, but it is the tomato fight that draws the crowds. During the battle, more than 100 metric tons of overripe tomatoes are thrown in the streets. Participants must follow certain safety guidelines during the event, and wearing goggles is recommended. When does the tomato throwing begin? More...
This Day in History

Barney Clark Receives World's First Permanent Artificial Heart (1982)

In the late 1940s, doctors at the Yale School of Medicine used parts from an Erector Set to build the first artificial heart pump. The device bypassed the heart of a dog for more than an hour. However, an artificial heart would not be implanted in a human until decades later. Barney Clark, a Seattle dentist with congestive heart failure, was the first recipient. Though the surgery was successful, Clark never recovered enough to leave the hospital and died of complications after how long? More...
Today's Birthday

Peter Carl Goldmark (1906)

A Hungarian engineer and inventor, Goldmark immigrated to the US in 1933 and went to work in the Columbia Broadcasting System (CBS) laboratories. There he developed the first commercial color television system, but it was not compatible with existing black-and-white television sets and was soon superseded by one that was. Later, he developed the system that would allow the US Lunar Orbiter to relay photographs from the Moon to Earth. What did he invent that revolutionized the recording industry? More...
Quotation of the Day
The almighty dollar, that great object of universal devotion throughout our land, seems to have no genuine devotees in these peculiar villages.

Washington Irving (1783-1859)

Idiom of the Day

talk a mile a minute

To speak in a very quick or hurried manner; to talk very fast. More...
Today's Holiday

Advent (2018)

The Advent season marks the beginning of the Christian year in Western Christianity. Its length varies from 22 to 28 days, beginning on the Sunday nearest St. Andrew's Day and encompassing the next three Sundays, ending on Christmas Eve. Originally a period of reflection and penitence in preparation for Christmas, Advent has sometimes been referred to as the Winter Lent. Today it is usually associated with the Advent calendars that parents give their children to help them count the days until Christmas. In Orthodox (Eastern) Christianity, Advent begins on November 15. More...
Word Trivia

Today's topic: reptile

reptile, amphibian - A reptile has dry, scaly skin, while an amphibian has moist skin. More...

herptile - Another word for reptile or amphibian. More...

spear - The sting of a reptile or insect. More...

herpetology - The branch of zoology dealing with amphibians and reptiles, based on Greek herpeton, "creeping thing." More...

In the News

Historic summit on gene editing and 'designer babies' convenes

Don't look now, but the future just pulled into town. Hundreds of scientists, policymakers and the president's science adviser have gathered Tuesday in Washington for what will be a three-day summit on genetic engineering, with a focus on a new ... More...
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