Daily Content Archive

(as of Tuesday, January 31, 2017)
Word of the Day

shoestring

Definition:(noun) Marked by or consisting of a small amount of money.
Synonyms:shoe string
Usage: The manager was expected to run the department on a shoestring budget, so to save money, he fired a few a few of the salesmen and accountants.
Article of the Day

Tessellations

Tessellations are patterns of carefully juxtaposed, non-overlapping shapes—like the multicolored tiles of a mosaic—that fill a given surface. They have been used throughout history, from ancient architecture to modern art, and are frequently found in the works of M.C. Escher. Regular tessellations, which are highly symmetrical and made up of congruent, regular polygons, can only be formed using equilateral triangles, squares, or hexagons. Where can tessellations be observed in the natural world? More...
This Day in History

Nauru, World's Smallest Island Nation, Gains Independence (1968)

Annexed by Germany in 1888, controlled by Great Britain since World War I, occupied by Japan during World War II, and administered by Australia until the late 1960s, the tiny, phosphate-rich island of Nauru flourished in the years following its independence. However, after the island exhausted its primary phosphate reserves, living conditions deteriorated. Today, it has a 90 percent unemployment rate, and much of the island is uninhabitable. What percent of Nauruan citizens are obese? More...
Today's Birthday

William Charles Lunalilo (1835)

The shortest-reigning monarch in Hawaiian history, Lunalilo was unanimously elected by the legislature after the death of Kamehameha V, who had declined to name an heir. Just 13 months later, the similarly heirless Lunalilo died of alcoholism and tuberculosis. His goal of a more democratic Hawaii had earned him the nickname "the People's King," and he was buried in a common cemetery rather than in the royal mausoleum. What was his reward for having composed Hawaii's first national anthem? More...
Quotation of the Day
They say that none of us exists, except in the imagination of his fellows, other than as an intangible, invisible mentality.

Edgar Rice Burroughs (1875-1950)

Today's Holiday

Up-Helly-Aa (2017)

This ancient fire festival is observed by people of Lerwick in the Shetland Islands. In pre-Christian times, their Norse ancestors welcomed the return of the sun god with Yule, a 24-day period of feasting, storytelling, and bonfires. The last night of the festival was called Up-Helly-Aa, or "End of the Holy Days." Today, a group known as the Guizers builds a 31-foot model of a Viking longship in honor of the Viking invaders who remained in Scotland. On the night of Up-Helly-Aa, the Guizers dress in Norse costumes and carry the boat to an open field. There, they throw lit torches into the ship and burn it. More...
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