Dec
31
2009
6

What are the Romance languages?

"I Love You" in a hundred languages (image by michelleoshen - CC-BY)The Romance languages sound very romantic (to my ears, at least), but that’s not why they are so named. Instead, their name tells us that these are the languages that arose from the collapse of the Roman empire. As the Roman empire fragmented, variations of the language developed in different areas, and eventually grew into [&hel[more...]

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Dec
27
2009
0

What is Topeka city profile?

Kansas State Capitol at Night - PDTopeka is the capital of Kansas, was chartered as a city in 1857 and served as a gateway west for pioneers traveling on the Oregon Trail. Topeka is home to the well known Kansas Museum of History where you’ll step back in time and learn all about the land that is Kansas and the American [&hel[more...]

Dec
21
2009
0

What is Des Moines city profile?

Iowa State Capitol - courtesy jimbowen0306 - CC-BYDes Moines is the capital and largest city in Iowa. It was incorporated in 1851, as Fort Des Moines later shortened to “Des Moines” in 1857 and became the capital the same year. Some Des Moines attractions are the Greek Revival State Capitol with its gilded roof, which is also one of the more popular [&hel[more...]

Dec
20
2009
0

What is Indianapolis city profile?

Indiana State Capitol - courtesy jglazer75 - CC-BYIndianapolis is the capital and largest city in Indiana.  It is the third largest city in the Midwest, after Chicago, Illinois, and Detroit, Michigan, and the second most populous state capital after Phoenix, Arizona.  Indianapolis was chosen as the site of the new state capital in 1820 and is the only state capital in the [&hel[more...]

Dec
19
2009
0

What is a brief history of basketball?

Basketball about to Score - courtesy j9sk9s - CC-BYIn 1891, Dr. James Naismith, instructor at the International Young Men’s Christian Association Training School in Springfield, Massachusetts, looked for indoor games to keep his students occupied and at good levels of fitness during the long New England winters.  He wrote the basic rules and nailed a peach basket onto a 10-foot elevated track. In [&hel[more...]

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Dec
19
2009
0

What is Springfield, Illinois city profile?

Illinois State Capitol - courtesy aka Kath - CC-BYSpringfield is the capital of Illinois.  Founded in the late 1810s, its most famous resident was Abraham Lincoln, who lived in Springfield from 1837 until he went to the White House in 1861.  Many tourist attractions are of historic sites connected with Lincoln.  Springfield became the capital of Illinois in 1839.  On February 10, 2007, [&hel[more...]

Dec
17
2009
3

What is a brief history of tennis?

Australian Open - courtesy * etoile - CC-BYThere is some dispute about the origins of Tennis.  One side believes that the ancient Egyptians played a precursor to tennis.  Their theory claims that the name tennis came from the Egyptian town of Tinnis and the word racquet evolved from the Arabic word for palm of the hand, rahat. That is not much evidence, [&hel[more...]

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Dec
16
2009
0

What is a brief history of golf?

Future Open winners - courtesy endbradley - CC-BYWhile Roman emperors apparently played a game called paganica, using a bent stick to drive a soft, feather-stuffed ball, golf is generally thought to be of Scottish origin, as the game was mentioned in two 15th century laws prohibiting the playing of the game of “gowf.”  In the first golf games, players would hit pebbles [&hel[more...]

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Dec
16
2009
0

What is Boise city profile?

Idaho State Capitol - courtesy Boise Metro Chamber - CC-BYBoise (often called the City of Trees), is the capital and largest city in Idaho.  Boise was incorporated as a city in 1864 and later made the territorial capital of Idaho in 1866. Art shows, annual festivals, food and wine events, historic celebrations, theatrical performances, bicycle races and marathons, there is something going on all [&hel[more...]

Dec
15
2009
0

What is Honolulu city profile?

Hawaii State Capitol - courtesy kanu101 - CC-BYHonolulu is the capital of Hawaii and the only incorporated city in the state.  All other urban regions are administrated at the county level.  In 1845, King Kamehameha III moved the permanent capital of the Hawaii from Lahaina on Maui to Honolulu. He and the kings that followed him changed Honolulu into a modern capital. [&hel[more...]

Dec
14
2009
0

What is the difference between a city, a town and a village?

Leeds, a city in Yorkshire (photo-painting by digitalrob70 - CC-BY)There are many definitions of what constitutes a “city”. The distinction between a city, a town and a village varies from country to country, and throughout history. Here are just a few of those definitions. In the United Kingdom, the monarch declares that a town has become a city. However, a few cities were grandfathered [&hel[more...]

Dec
14
2009
0

When will Hadrian’s Wall be lit from end to end?

Signal Station on Hadrian’s Wall (photo by Darren Copley CC-BYHadrian’s Wall, the famous wall built by the Roman emperor Hadrian in the north of England as a border marker and customs post, is to be lit up by a line of flaming beacons along its entire 84 mile length from the coast of eastern England across to the western coast. The event is planned [&hel[more...]

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Dec
14
2009
0

What is the history of scissors?

Scissors - courtesy dboy - CC-BYScissors are small cutting implements which are familiar for a lifetime and too frequently overlooked in the march of human progress. We know the history of the garden hoe and plow, both simple cutting surfaces. But scissors are a little more complex, yet little is available of their history. Do they date back one century, [&hel[more...]

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Dec
14
2009
0

What is Atlanta city profile?

Georgia State Capitol - courtesy Joe Shlabotnik - CC-BYAtlanta is the capital and largest city in the state of Georgia.  The town was incorporated as Atlanta on December 29, 1847.  In 1868, Atlanta became the state capital. If one is going to Atlanta to see some of the Old South, there will be some disappointment.  Unlike many other Southern cities such as Savannah, [&hel[more...]

Dec
12
2009
3

Does each decade start in the “zero” year or the “one” year?

Photo by color line - CC-BYStrictly speaking, every year starts a new decade. For example, 2007 started the decade of 2007-2016. A decade just means ten years. However, for many cultural purposes (such as to group events together) a series of decades is designated according to a regular pattern. For most of the population, the significant decades are those beginning [&hel[more...]

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Dec
12
2009
0

What is Tallahassee city profile?

Florida State Capitol - courtesy jimbowen0306 - CC-BYTallahassee is the capital of Florida. The city became the capital of Florida in 1824. The rough-hewn frontier town rapidly grew during Florida’s territorial period. In 1845, a Greek Revival structure was erected as the Capitol building in time for statehood. Now known as the “Old Capitol,” it stands in front of the New State [&hel[more...]

Dec
12
2009
0

What is Hertford, England, city profile?

Hertford Castle - courtesy TheLizardQueen - CC-BYHertford is the county town of Hertfordshire, England, the United Kingdom.  In 2006, the area was ranked one of the top 10 places to live in the UK according to Channel 4 TV.  The town of Meryton in the Jane Austen novel “Pride and Prejudice” may have been based on Hertford and according to some, [&hel[more...]

Dec
11
2009
0

What is Dover, England, city profile?

White Cliffs over Dover - courtesy essygie - CC-BYDover is a town in Kent, in South East England, the United Kingdom, and faces France across the narrowest part of the English Channel. Dover’s name originates with its river – the River Dour, via its Latinized form of Dubris. The Romans called it “Porte Dubris.” However, the modern name was in use at least [&hel[more...]

Dec
11
2009
1

How well do solar powered watches work?

Solar powered watch showing the H/M/L battery gauge (photo by Roger Browne - CC-BY)The promise made by a solar powered digital watch is a big one—an end to the need to periodically replace the watch battery. And if the solar powered watch also has radio controlled timesetting then the watch should “just work”. It should always show the correct time and should never run down. But how well [&hel[more...]

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Dec
10
2009
0

What is Dover, Delaware, city profile?

Delaware State Capitol - courtesy jimbowen0306 - CC-BYDover is the capital of Delaware and the states second largest city.  The city was named by William Penn for Dover in Kent, England and it became the capital in 1777. Dover is one of the fast-growing areas in the country, due in large part to the relatively low cost of living. It is also [&hel[more...]

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