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Quote of the Day

  • Alexandre Dumas
    We must have felt what it is to die ... that we may appreciate the enjoyments of living. Discuss
  • Herman Melville
    It's worth a fellow's while to be born into the world, if only to fall right asleep.
  • Henry David Thoreau
    I came into this world, not chiefly to make this a good place to live in, but to live in it, be it good or bad.

Word of the Day

  • nullify
    Definition: (verb) Declare invalid. Synonyms: annul, invalidate, void, quash, avoid. Usage: He used his broad executive powers to nullify decisions by local government. Discuss
  • jocose
    Definition: (adjective) Given to joking; merry. Synonyms: jesting, jocular, joking. Usage: Larry, who was usually so jocose, said he didn't have time for pranks.
  • jejune
    Definition: (adjective) Not interesting; dull. Synonyms: insipid. Usage: The jejune novel was full of trite phrases and dull banter that went on for pages at a time, but I nevertheless read it from cover to cover.

Today’s Birthday

  • Ronald McNair (1950)
    A nationally recognized US physicist, accomplished saxophonist, and black belt in karate, McNair was selected to join NASA's astronaut training program in 1978. Six years later, aboard the space shuttle Challenger, he became the second African American in space. His next trip into orbit was to take place on the same shuttle on January 28, 1986, and McNair brought his sax along for the ride, intending to be the first to record an original piece of music in space. Why did this never happen? Discuss
  • Arthur Rimbaud (1854)
    Rimbaud may have put down his pen when he was just 19 to lead an international vagabond life as a merchant and trader, but in his few years as a poet, the precocious young Frenchman managed to create a literary legacy that would have a lasting influence on the symbolists and subsequent modern poets. He put his verbal virtuosity on display in works like "The Drunken Boat," A Season in Hell, and Illuminations. Who shot and wounded Rimbaud during one of their many lovers' quarrels?
  • Carlo Urbani (1956)
    In February 2003, Urbani, an Italian physician employed by the World Health Organization (WHO), was called to examine a man hospitalized in Hanoi, Vietnam, with what was initially thought to be the flu or pneumonia. Recognizing that it was in fact a new and highly contagious disease, Urbani immediately notified the WHO, prompting a rapid global response that ultimately saved many lives, though sadly not his own. The doctor himself soon succumbed to the disease he had identified. What was it?

Article of the Day   (article source)

  • Nanobodies
    In the 1980s, research on monoclonal antibodies—antibodies mass produced in a laboratory to target a single antigen—generated excitement for their potential applications in fighting disease, especially cancer. However, their effectiveness in disease treatment has been limited. Today, a much smaller type of monoclonal antibody called a nanobody is being researched to treat diseases such as cancer and Alzheimer's. Nanobodies were discovered during unrelated research on what animal? Discuss
  • Les Nabis
    Les Nabis began as a rebellious group of students at Rodolphe Julian's private art school in Paris in the late 19th century. Taking their name from the Hebrew word for "prophet," these artists rejected the naturalism of the impressionists and developed a style of decorative art—using boldly juxtaposed but muted colors—that paved the way for the 20th-century abstract movement. They also embraced formats like printmaking and coined their own private language. How did they sign letters?
  • Mahabodhi Temple
    Siddhartha Gautama, the man who would come to be revered as Buddha, was a prince who lived a sheltered life of luxury until he left his palace and witnessed real-world suffering. Renouncing his wealth, he became a wandering ascetic and is said to have gained enlightenment while meditating under a bodhi tree. A few hundred years later, around 250 BCE, Mahabodhi Temple, or "Great Awakening Temple," was built on the site. Who initiated the restoration of the Bodh Gaya, India, temple in the 1880s?

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