Daily Content Archive

(as of Monday, February 10, 2014)
Word of the Day

louche

Definition:(adjective) Of questionable taste or morality.
Synonyms:shady
Usage: It did not surprise me that the owner of that louche nightclub downtown was arrested for selling illegal drugs to the patrons.
Article of the Day

"Colorless Green Ideas Sleep Furiously"

If you think the sentence "Colorless green ideas sleep furiously" makes no sense, you're right. Linguist Noam Chomsky devised it because it had likely never been spoken before and was grammatically correct but nonsensical. He thus challenged popular structuralism, arguing that linguists should study native speakers' unconscious knowledge of their language, not the language they actually produce. What were the results of a contest in which participants tried to make Chomsky's sentence meaningful? More...
This Day in History

Lord Darnley, Second Husband of Mary Queen of Scots, Found Murdered (1567)

Though Darnley's murder remains an unsolved mystery, one certainty is that at the time of his death, he was not well-liked. In line for the English throne, he infuriated Queen Elizabeth by marrying Mary Queen of Scots. He then alienated Mary by accusing her of infidelity and stabbing her secretary to death in front of her. Mary distanced herself from him, and shortly thereafter, his house exploded. He was found dead—but not from the blast. How was he killed, and who is suspected of his murder? More...
Today's Birthday

Bertolt Brecht (1898)

Brecht was a German playwright and poet whose brilliant wit and revolutionary theatrical experiments made him a vital and controversial force in modern drama. In 1928, he displayed his hostility toward capitalism as well as his bittersweet compassion for humanity in The Threepenny Opera. With the rise of the Nazis in 1933, he went into exile, first in Scandinavia and then in the US. One of Brecht's most important theories was the concept of Verfremdungseffekt, which means what? More...
Quotation of the Day
A lie never lives to be old.

Sophocles (496 BC-406 BC)

Idiom of the Day

out of steam

Completely exhausted, fatigued, or without energy or motivation. More...
Today's Holiday

Magha Purnima (2017)

Like Kartika Purnima, this is a Hindu bathing festival, and Hindus believe that bathing in the Ganges on this day is a great purifying act. When they cannot get to the Ganges, they bathe in the sea or in any holy stream, river, or tank (a pool or pond used to store water). There is a large tank that is considered holy at Kumbhkonam; Hindus believe on this particular day, the Ganges flows into the tank. Magha Purnima is a day for fasting and charities. Early in the morning, libations are offered to dead ancestors, while donations of food, clothes, and money are given to the poor. More...
In the News

Prosthesis Gives Amputee Sensation

In recent years, bioengineers have made great strides in the design of prosthetics, integrating technologies that make artificial limbs more lifelike and give amputees greater control over their use. Under development by one team is a bionic hand that allows the user to "feel" the objects it is grasping. Their prototype possesses sensors that send electrical signals to electrodes implanted in nerves in the arm of the wearer, providing sensory feedback that in recent tests allowed a user to identify the shape and stiffness of objects by touch alone. More...
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