Daily Content Archive

(as of Saturday, March 05, 2016)
Word of the Day

jongleur

Definition:(noun) A wandering minstrel, poet, or entertainer in medieval England and France.
Synonyms:folk singer, minstrel, poet-singer, troubadour
Usage: The group of jongleurs was so popular that King Edward requested a private performance.
Article of the Day

Space Food

The weightlessness experienced by humans in space poses a number of challenges in the performance of day-to-day tasks. Early experts feared that weightless conditions would make food difficult to swallow, allowing it to collect dangerously in the throat. Scientists began developing bite-sized cubes, freeze-dried powders, and semiliquid space foods for astronaut use, but the space travelers found the foods unappetizing, difficult to rehydrate, and messy. How have these concerns been addressed? More...
This Day in History

George Westinghouse Patents the Automatic Air Brake (1872)

Prior to the advent of trucking in the early 1900s, rail was the only efficient way to transport goods over land. However, before the 1870s, there was no easy way to quickly stop the extremely heavy freight trains. Brakemen scrambled over the tops of moving cars to activate hand brakes on each one. The system was unreliable, resulting in frequent derailments, and many brakemen were killed or maimed after falling from trains. The air brake solved all of those problems. How did it work? More...
Today's Birthday

Howard Pyle (1853)

Pyle was an American illustrator and writer who specialized in tales of chivalry and adventure for children. He rewrote and realistically illustrated classic tales about figures like Robin Hood and King Arthur, adapting the stories to suit a younger audience. In 1900, he founded an art school, and many of his students went on to become famous illustrators themselves. Today, he is considered the father of American illustration. Which noted Post-Impressionist painter was an admirer of Pyle's work? More...
Quotation of the Day
Spoon feeding in the long run teaches us nothing but the shape of the spoon.

E. M. Forster (1879-1970)

Idiom of the Day

leave (someone) holding the baby

To foist responsibility or guilt for something on someone else; to allow someone else to take the blame for something. Primarily heard in UK. More...
Today's Holiday

Iditarod (2017)

The Iditarod is the world's longest and toughest sled dog race, across the state of Alaska from Anchorage on the south-central coast to Nome on the Bering Sea just south of the Arctic Circle. The race, which began in 1973, follows an old frozen-river mail route and is named for a deserted mining town along the way. A number of events are clustered around the running of the race. At Wasilla, near Anchorage, Iditarod Days are held on the beginning weekend of the race and feature softball, golf on ice, fireworks, and snow sculptures. More...
In the News

Study suggests a new trick for finding alien civilizations

The hunt for extraterrestrial life — of any kind, including lowly, long-dead microbes — is lofty enough. But the hunt for intelligent civilizations that could be looking for us in return? It's even more of a long shot. In a new paper published in the ... More...
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