Daily Content Archive

(as of Thursday, June 30, 2011)
Word of the Day

heavyset

Definition:(adjective) Having a short and solid form or stature.
Synonyms:stocky, thickset, compact
Usage: Although he was heavyset, he moved with surprising agility and speed and was a formidable opponent in the ring.
Article of the Day

Neurogenesis

The human nervous system is composed of some 200 billion cells called neurons, about half of which are found in the brain. Neurogenesis, the process through which neurons are formed, is most active during prenatal development. Though early neuroanatomists believed that the adult nervous system is fixed and incapable of regeneration, neurogenesis actually continues throughout life. Studies have shown that lack of sleep reduces neurogenesis and exercise increases it. How is it affected by stress? More...
This Day in History

The Great Blondin Crosses Niagara Falls on Tightrope (1859)

Best known as "The Great Blondin," Jean François Gravelet was a French tightrope walker and acrobat famous for making multiple crossings of Niagara Falls on a tightrope on several occasions. Balancing 160 feet (48 m) above the water on a 1,100-foot (335-m) tightrope, Blondin dazzled crowds by using a different theatrical variation each time he crossed, performing the feat blindfolded, in a sack, pushing a wheelbarrow, on stilts, carrying a man on his back, and sitting down to do what? More...
Today's Birthday

Michael Phelps (1985)

Phelps is an American swimmer who has won 16 Olympic medals, 14 of them gold. He started swimming as a child and competed in his first Olympics at 15. A year later, he became the youngest male ever to set a world swimming record, doing so in the 200-meter butterfly. In 2008, he set a record for most gold medals won at a single Olympiad—eight—while setting as many swimming records. Which swimmer voiced doubts about Phelps' ability to break the record but was happy to be proven wrong? More...
Quotation of the Day
You think that you are Ann's suitor; that you are the pursuer and she the pursued; that it is your part to woo, to persuade, to prevail, to overcome. Fool: it is you who are the pursued, the marked-down quarry, the destined prey.

George Bernard Shaw (1856-1950)

Idiom of the Day

user base

business jargon The number units of a particular product or service that are currently in use, especially software or an internet or computing platform. (Also referred to as "install(ed) user base" or simply "install(ed) base.") More...
Today's Holiday

National Basque Festival (2017)

This sports-music-dance-barbecue celebration of Basque heritage has been held annually since 1962 in Elko, Nevada. Participants in the festival wear the traditional red, white, and green of the Basque provinces of Spain. The men also wear the traditional Basque beret. The festival begins on Friday with social and exhibition dancing. On Saturday there's a parade of more than 50 floats, and major contests of weightlifting, sheepdog-working, and dancing the native jota. On Sunday, the events wind up with a big barbecue of steak, marinated lamb, and spicy chorizo sausages. More...
In the News

Rinderpest, Second Disease Ever to Be Eradicated

For the second time in history, a disease has been entirely eradicated. The first was smallpox in 1980. Now, according to the UN, the world is officially free of rinderpest, also known as cattle plague, a highly contagious viral disease that kills ruminants within days of infection. Because many societies are dependent on cattle, this disease has helped shape the course of human history. Indeed, it is said to have sped the fall of the Roman Empire, contributed to the discontent leading up to the French Revolution, and paved the way for the colonization of Africa. More...
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