May
31
2009
0

How do you grow rosemary for cooking and fragrance?

Rosemary growing in Spain   (Photo by soltenviva - CC-BY)Rosemary is delicious in all kinds of savoury cooking, and it’s simple to grow in climates not too different from its home base around the Mediterranean. If you plant it near a path not only can you enjoy its scent when you brush past on sunny days, but on rainy days you can easily pick [&hel[more...]

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May
30
2009
0

Why are there seven days in a week?

Nighttime sky.Nobody knows for certain, but chances are that our seven-day week is historically connected with the fact that the Babylonians and other early astronomers recognized seven celestial bodies that weren’t in fixed positions like the stars — the sun, the moon, Mercury, Venus, Mars, Jupiter and Saturn. In fact, in English the names of three [&hel[more...]

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May
30
2009
1

Is the Labrador Retriever the most popular dog breed in the U.S.?

Labrador Retriever (Photo by OakleyOriginals - CC-BY)The Labrador Retriever is one of the most popular dog breeds worldwide. According to American Kennel Club (AKC) dog registration statistics, the Labrador Retriever has been America’s top registered breed for the last 18 years. Ranking of the most popular dogs in the U.S. (2008) 1. Labrador Retriever 2. Yorkshire Terrier 3. German Shepherd Dog 4. [&hel[more...]

May
29
2009
2

Who owns the copyright to “Happy Birthday to You”?

Photo by telachhe - CC-BYIt’s hard to imagine that such a commonplace song as Happy Birthday to You is still under copyright, but in most countries that’s the case. The copyright is owned by the Time Warner conglomerate, and if you sing it in a public place (such as at a restaurant) you are liable to pay a royalty [&hel[more...]

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May
28
2009
0

Can I re-use the photos from Quezi?

Found photograph by anyjazz65 - CC-BYMost of the photos at Quezi are either public domain, or are licensed to allow re-use. However, please don’t hot-link to Quezi’s copy of the images. That would steal our bandwidth and we might serve pictures of a donkey’s bum to your website’s visitors instead! So please right-click on the image and save it to [&hel[more...]

May
28
2009
0

How can I grow Chives to use in cooking?

These chives are ready to be split (photo by answerfinder CC-BY)Chives (Allium schoenoprasum) are perhaps one of the easiest herbs to grow in your garden or in a container. They require little attention and bring a late-spring colour to the garden. Chives are part of the onion family. You can eat the bulb, leaves and even the flower head. Most people just use their leaves [&hel[more...]

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May
27
2009
1

Why do gardeners tie daffodil leaves into knots?

Daffodil knot (photo by Roger Browne - CC-BY)It’s an odd custom. Some gardeners will fastidiously tie all their daffodil leaves into knots at the end of the flowering season. What gives? Actually, the purpose served by the knots is more social than horticultural. Daffodils burst into bloom each April (or October south of the equator). The petals then fall off and, provided [&hel[more...]

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May
27
2009
2

How much alcohol is there in nonalcoholic beer?

Nonalcoholic beer looks like the real thing. Plindberg photo. CC-BY.Nonalcoholic beer, sometimes known as near beer, is made in the same way as the regular beer is, but after it has been brewed the alcohol is distilled off. Bottlers typically heat the beer at a relatively low temperature under low air pressure, so the alcohol can be removed without “cooking” the beer. Because alcohol [&hel[more...]

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May
27
2009
0

Can you use flowers in food and drink?

Nasturtiums on colourful composed salad  (Photo by Sancho Papa - CC-BY)The first flower salad I ever saw was covered with bright nasturtiums like the visual treat in the photo. It impressed me with the idea that some garden flowers are not only edible, but look wonderful on food. You can grow them as well as the better-known herbs to add interesting colours and flavours to [&hel[more...]

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May
27
2009
0

What are ants good for?

Ant Sugar (photo by asobi tsuchiya CC-BY)Getting antsy about ants? They bite and make your skin itchy. They invade our food and spices. Whenever we see ants inside or outside our homes, we either smash them with our thumbs or use insecticide to get rid of them. If the problems get too serious we hire an exterminator to eliminate them. However; [&hel[more...]

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May
26
2009
1

What are the different kinds of kiwi fruit (golden kiwi, kiwi berry, etc)?

Photo by Roger Browne - CC-BYThe kiwifruit is native to China, and for many years was known in western countries as the Chinese Gooseberry because its shape resembles an oversized gooseberry and its taste is similarly acidic. The name “kiwi fruit” was coined as a marketing term in 1959 by Turners and Growers, wholesale fruit merchants of Auckland New Zealand. [&hel[more...]

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May
25
2009
2

Is famille rose porcelain always Chinese?

Famille rose detail from vase, southern China, late 1700s (Photo by dalbera - CC-BY)Famille rose decoration for porcelain developed in China around 1720. A new wave of Chinese ceramics using rose and ruby shades in multi-colour designs was greatly admired in Europe. Introduced just before the western craze for oriental style interior decoration peaked in the mid-18th century, plenty was manufactured for export, along with many other Asian [&hel[more...]

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May
25
2009
0

What is a Ceilidh?

Wedding ceilidh (photo by René Ehrhardt - CC-BY)A ceilidh (also spelled ceili) is a social gathering which centers around ceilidh dancing. It may be a public event, or may be organized by a community organization such as a sports club, or may be associated with a celebration such as a wedding or naming ceremony. Plenty of ceilidhs are offered at folk festivals. [&hel[more...]

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May
24
2009
0

How does the Creative Commons CC0 (CC-zero) license work?

Photo by ϻicκγ - CC0Every country has a notion of the public domain—where creative and scientific works older than a certain age are available to everyone as part of humanity’s shared culture. But what if you want to dedicate your own creative or scientific work to humanity? Many countries don’t allow you to do that, and automatically apply full [&hel[more...]

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May
24
2009
0

What is phishing?

Phishing e-mailPhishing is a type of fraud in which people are tricked into providing information such as passwords, usernames and bank account data that can be used to gain unauthorized entrance to accounts. In one of the simplest and most common types of phishing, the scammer sends e-mails providing a link to a web site and [&hel[more...]

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May
24
2009
0

How can I protect myself from phishing scams?

Online scammers want your money. Composite photo by D70focus. CC-BY.If you’ve ever received an e-mail asking you to enter account information at some rogue web site, you’ve been the would-be victim of a phishing attempt. Every hour, thousands of Internet users are targeted. While there is no way of protecting yourself 100 percent of the time from every possible Internet threat, there are some [&hel[more...]

May
24
2009
0

What is the CN Tower?

CN Tower - courtesy SanGatiche - CC-BYThe CN Tower in Downtown Toronto, Ontario, Canada, is a communications and observation tower standing 1,815.4 ft. It surpassed the height of the Ostankino Tower while still under construction in 1975. It then was the tallest free-standing structure ‘on land’ in the world. Because the Petronius Platform oil platform in the Gulf of Mexico is [&hel[more...]

May
24
2009
0

What is the Sears Tower?

Sears Tower - courtesy David Paul Ohmer - CC-BYThe Sears Tower is a skyscraper in Chicago, Illinois. At the time it was finished in 1973 it was the tallest building in the world, surpassing the World Trade Center towers in New York City. It is the tallest building in the United States, and the fourth tallest freestanding structure in the world. In summer [&hel[more...]

May
24
2009
0

What is the Empire State Building?

Empire State Building - courtesy Jim Linwood - CCc-BYThe Empire State Building is an Art Deco skyscraper in New York City. The Empire State Building is legend. Built in the midst of the Great Depression, it was, and still is a testament to American fortitude and ingenuity. It was the world’s tallest building for more than forty years, from 1931 until the completion [&hel[more...]

May
23
2009
0

What is the Chrysler Building?

Chrysler Building - courtesy tiseb - CC-BYThe Chrysler Building is an Art Deco skyscraper in New York City. Near the beginning of the 20th century, the race for the tallest building in the world got underway and the Chrysler Building was the first building to top the then tallest structure, the Eiffel Tower in Paris. It was the world’s tallest building [&hel[more...]

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