Fun Stuff

Robert Orben

Quotes of the Day - Thu, 08/20/2015 - 7:00pm
"Never raise your hand to your children; it leaves your midsection unprotected."
Categories: Fun Stuff

obeisance

Merriam-Webster's Word of the Day - Thu, 08/20/2015 - 1:00am

Merriam-Webster's Word of the Day for August 20, 2015 is:

obeisance • \oh-BEE-sunss\  • noun
1 : a movement of the body made in token of respect or submission : bow 2 : acknowledgment of another's superiority or importance : homage

Examples:
"They took their hats off and made obeisance and many signs, which however, I could not understand any more than I could their spoken language …" — Bram Stoker, Dracula, 1897

"College presidents and school officials frequently explain their obeisance to their athletic departments by saying that without big-time sports programs, they'd never get any money out of their alumni." — Murray A. Sperber, The Washington Post, March 15, 2015

Did you know?
When it first appeared in English in the late 14th century, obeisance shared the same meaning as obedience. This makes sense given that obeisance can be traced back to the Anglo-French verb obeir, which means "to obey" and is also an ancestor of our word obey. The other senses of obeisance also date from the 14th century, but they have stood the test of time whereas the obedience sense is now obsolete.

Categories: Fun Stuff

August 20, 1911: First around-the-world telegram sent, 66 years before Voyager II launch

This Day in History - Wed, 08/19/2015 - 11:00pm

On this day in 1911, a dispatcher in the New York Times office sends the first telegram around the world via commercial service. Exactly 66 years later, the National Aeronautics and Space Administration (NASA) sends a different kind of message–a phonograph record containing information about Earth for extraterrestrial beings–shooting into space aboard the unmanned spacecraft Voyager II.

The Times decided to send its 1911 telegram in order to determine how fast a commercial message could be sent around the world by telegraph cable. The message, reading simply “This message sent around the world,” left the dispatch room on the 17th floor of the Times building in New York at 7 p.m. on August 20. After it traveled more than 28,000 miles, being relayed by 16 different operators, through San Francisco, the Philippines, Hong Kong, Saigon, Singapore, Bombay, Malta, Lisbon and the Azores–among other locations–the reply was received by the same operator 16.5 minutes later. It was the fastest time achieved by a commercial cablegram since the opening of the Pacific cable in 1900 by the Commercial Cable Company.

On August 20, 1977, a NASA rocket launched Voyager II, an unmanned 1,820-pound spacecraft, from Cape Canaveral, Florida. It was the first of two such crafts to be launched that year on a “Grand Tour” of the outer planets, organized to coincide with a rare alignment of Jupiter, Saturn, Uranus and Neptune. Aboard Voyager II was a 12-inch copper phonograph record called “Sounds of Earth.” Intended as a kind of introductory time capsule, the record included greetings in 60 languages and scientific information about Earth and the human race, along with classical, jazz and rock ‘n’ roll music, nature sounds like thunder and surf, and recorded messages from President Jimmy Carter and other world leaders.

The brainchild of astronomer Carl Sagan, the record was sent with Voyager II and its twin craft, Voyager I–launched just two weeks later–in the faint hope that it might one day be discovered by extraterrestrial creatures. The record was sealed in an aluminum jacket that would keep it intact for 1 billion years, along with instructions on how to play the record, with a cartridge and needle provided.

More importantly, the two Voyager crafts were designed to explore the outer solar system and send information and photographs of the distant planets to Earth. Over the next 12 years, the mission proved a smashing success. After both crafts flew by Jupiter and Saturn, Voyager I went flying off towards the solar system’s edge while Voyager II visited Uranus, Neptune and finally Pluto in 1990 before sailing off to join its twin in the outer solar system.

Thanks to the Voyager program, NASA scientists gained a wealth of information about the outer planets, including close-up photographs of Saturn’s seven rings; evidence of active geysers and volcanoes exploding on some of the four planets’ 22 moons; winds of more than 1,500 mph on Neptune; and measurements of the magnetic fields on Uranus and Neptune. The two crafts are expected to continue sending data until 2020, or until their plutonium-based power sources run out. After that, they will continue to sail on through the galaxy for millions of years to come, barring some unexpected collision.

Categories: Fun Stuff

Daily Puzzle - August 19

BrainBashers - Easy Sudoku - Wed, 08/19/2015 - 8:21pm
BrainBashers Daily Puzzle

Here is a well known proverb with the consonants removed. What is the proverb.

A *i** i* **e *a** i* *o*** **o i* **e *u**.

[Copyright: Kevin Stone]

Categories: Fun Stuff

Daily Sudoku - August 19 - Easy

BrainBashers - Easy Sudoku - Wed, 08/19/2015 - 8:21pm
BrainBashers Daily Sudoku



Complete the grid such that every row, every column, and the nine 3x3 blocks contain the digits from 1 to 9.

[Copyright: Kevin Stone]

Categories: Fun Stuff

Daily Game - August 19

BrainBashers - Easy Sudoku - Wed, 08/19/2015 - 8:21pm
BrainBashers Daily Game

Fat Slice
   Slice up shapes by dragging your mouse through them.
[Played on the BrainBashers Games website]

Categories: Fun Stuff

Joss Whedon, Zack Whedon, Maurissa Tancharoen, and Jed Whedon

Quotes of the Day - Wed, 08/19/2015 - 7:00pm
"You give my regards to St. Peter, or whoever has his job, but in Hell."
Categories: Fun Stuff

Robert Frost

Quotes of the Day - Wed, 08/19/2015 - 7:00pm
"In three words I can sum up everything I've learned about life: it goes on."
Categories: Fun Stuff

Oliver Wendell Holmes Jr.

Quotes of the Day - Wed, 08/19/2015 - 7:00pm
"Lawyers spend a great deal of their time shoveling smoke."
Categories: Fun Stuff

Anonymous

Quotes of the Day - Wed, 08/19/2015 - 7:00pm
"If we don't succeed, we run the risk of failure."
Categories: Fun Stuff