Saturday, July 30, 2011


A kouros (plural kouroi, Ancient Greek κοῦρος) is the modern term given to those representations of male youths which first appear in the Archaic period in Greece. The term kouros, meaning (male) youth, was first proposed for what were previously thought to be depictions of Apollo by V. I. Leonardos in 1895 in relation to the youth from Keratea, and adopted by Lechat as a generic term for the standing male figure in 1904. Such statues are found across the Greek-speaking world, the preponderance of these were found in sanctuaries of Apollo with more than one hundred from the sanctuary of Apollo Ptoios, Boeotia, alone. These free-standing sculptures were typically marble, but also the form is rendered in limestone, wood, bronze, ivory and terracotta.

Friday, July 29, 2011


Ichthys (sometimes spelled Ikhthus, from Greek: ἰχθύς, capitalized ΙΧΘΥΣ or ΙΧΘΥC) is the ancient and classical Greek word for "fish". In English it refers to a symbol consisting of two intersecting arcs, the ends of the right side extending beyond the meeting point so as to resemble the profile of a fish, said to have been used by Early Christians as a secret symbol[1] and now known colloquially as the "sign of the fish" or the "Jesus fish."

Thursday, July 28, 2011


Pissaladiere or Pissaladina (pissaladiera in Provençal, "piscialandrea" in Ligurian) is a type of pizza made in southern France, around the Nice, Marseilles, Toulon and the Var District, and in the Italian region of Liguria, especially in the Imperia district. Believed to have been introduced to the area by Roman cooks during the time of the Avignon Papacy, it can be considered a type of white pizza, as no tomatoes are used. The dough is usually a bread dough thicker than that of the classic Italian pizza (although a pâte brisée is sometimes used instead), and the traditional topping consist of sauteed (almost pureed) onions, olives, garlic and anchovies

Wednesday, July 27, 2011


A dingbat is an ornament, character or spacer used in typesetting, sometimes more formally known as a "printer's ornament" or "printer's character".

Tuesday, July 26, 2011


In fantasy fiction, the term revenant usually means a sentient creature whose desire to fulfill a special goal allows it to return from the grave as a creature vaguely resembling an intelligent zombie. Another possibility is that a powerful wizard returns a dead hero from the past to make him go on a quest that no living human would dare to undertake. Such a revenant may be just as intelligent as it was in life but its will is usually bound by the wizard who summons and controls it.

The dictionary definition of revenant, from Merriam-Webster's Internet site ( is "one that returns after death or a long absence." In that the subject returns from death, one can easily see an association of the term with the undead in fantasy and horror fiction. On the other hand, unlike zombies, the revenant's "long absence" does imply a certain anachronism in its eventual return

Monday, July 25, 2011


Bungalows became popular in the United Kingdom between the Wars, and very large numbers were built, particularly in coastal resorts, giving rise to the pejorative adjective, "bungaloid", first found in the Daily Express from 1927: "Hideous allotments and bungaloid growth make the approaches to any city repulsive".

Sunday, July 24, 2011


A bungalow is a type of single-story house that originated in India. The word derives from the Gujarati બંગલો baṅgalo, which in turn derives from the Hindustani बंगला baṅglā, meaning "Bengali" and used elliptically for a "house in the Bengal style". Such houses were traditionally small, only one story and thatched, and had a wide veranda.

Saturday, July 23, 2011


Helibor (Helsinki Interbank Offered Rate) was a daily reference rate that was used in 19871998 on the Finnish interbank market. It was calculated as an average of the interest rates at which the banks offered to lend unsecured, Finnish markka nominated funds to each other.

Friday, July 22, 2011


A supercouple or super couple (also known as a power couple) is a popular or financially wealthy pairing that intrigues and fascinates the public in an intense or even obsessive fashion. The term originated in the United States, and was coined in the early 1980s when intense public interest in fictional soap opera couple Luke Spencer and Laura Webber from General Hospital made the pair a popular culture phenomenon.

Thursday, July 21, 2011


wonderosity: from wonder and curiosity — following one's sense of curiosity in a direction that leads to wonder.

BondiBeach_02-07-08_121 by Chris Walker Innerwealth.

Image by Chris Walker.

Wednesday, July 20, 2011


A cabochon, from the Middle French caboche (head), is a gemstone which has been shaped and polished as opposed to faceted. The resulting form is usually a convex top with a flat bottom. Cutting en cabochon is usually applied to opaque gems, while faceting is usually applied to transparent stones. Hardness is also taken into account as softer gemstones with a hardness lower than 7 on the Mohs hardness scale are easily scratched, mainly by silicon dioxide in dust and grit. This would quickly make translucent gems unattractive—instead they are polished as cabochons, making the scratches less evident.

Monday, July 18, 2011


A numeronym is a number-based word. Most commonly a numeronym is a word where the number is used to form an abbreviation (albeit not an acronym or an initialism). Pronouncing the letters and numbers may sound similar to the full word: "K9" for "canine" (phonetically: "kay" + "nine"), and (in French) "K7" for "cassette" (phonetically: "ka" + "sept").

The following terms are used in their computing sense only and shouldn't be confused with similar terminology i.e. Globalization in the sense of software preparedness for global distribution,[3] rather than Globalization.

* a11y - Accessibility
* c11y - Consumability
* c14n - Canonicalisation / Canonicalization
* d11n - Documentation
* G11n - Globalisation / Globalization (specifically of XML[4])
* i14y - Interoperability[5]
* i18n - Internationalisation / Internationalization
* L10n - Localisation / Localization
* m10n - Monetization
* m12n - Modularisation / Modularization (specifically of XML[6])
* m17n - Multilingualization
* n11n - Normalisation/Normalization
* P13n - Personalisation / Personalization
* v11n - Versification[7]
* v12n - Virtualization
* i13s - Interestingness

Sunday, July 17, 2011


Wotsits is a brand of cheese puffs sold by Walkers. The most common form are cheese flavoured curly shapes. However over the years various other shapes (such as waffle-shaped Wotsits) and flavours (such as prawn cocktail and flamin hot) have also been sold. "Limited edition" Wotsits have also appeared on more than one occasion.[citation needed] The brand name occurs in the singular, "Wotsit", referring to an individual corn puff. It is an allusion to the slang term "whatsit", to which it is phonetically identical. Wotsits packaging often come with a joke or trivia section on the back.

Saturday, July 16, 2011


Sedition is a term of law which refers to overt conduct, such as speech and organization, that is deemed by the legal authority as tending toward insurrection against the established order. Sedition often includes subversion of a constitution and incitement of discontent (or resistance) to lawful authority. Sedition may include any commotion, though not aimed at direct and open violence against the laws. Seditious words in writing are seditious libel. A seditionist is one who engages in or promotes the interests of sedition.

Friday, July 15, 2011

Frog march

Frog march
  1. To carry a person face-down with one person holding each limb.
  2. To forcibly relocate a person, especially in a degrading or humiliating manner.

Thursday, July 14, 2011


The Maghreb, also rendered Maghrib refers to the 5 countries constituting North Africa, (not to be confused with Northern Africa). It is an Arabic word, literally meaning "place of sunset" or "the west" (from an Arabian perspective). The term is generally now used, mainly by Arabs, to refer collectively to the African countries of Morocco, Algeria, Tunisia, Libya, and Mauritania. However, before the establishment of modern nation states in the region in the 20th century, "Maghreb" signified the smaller area that lies between the high ranges of the Atlas Mountains in the south, and the Mediterranean Sea in the north, thus excluding most of Libya and Mauritania. Sometimes, after Islam entered the region, the term has included the previously Muslim Andalusia, Sicily, and Malta.

Wednesday, July 13, 2011


A Sofer is a Jewish scribe who can transcribe Torah scrolls and other religious writings such as those used in Tefillin and Mezuzot.

Tuesday, July 12, 2011


A mechanoreceptor is a sensory receptor that responds to mechanical pressure or distortion. There are four main types in the glabrous skin of humans: Pacinian corpuscles, Meissner's corpuscles, Merkel's discs, and Ruffini corpuscles. There are also mechanoreceptors in the hairy skin, and the hair cells in the cochlea are the most sensitive mechanoreceptors, transducing air pressure waves into sound.

rosa rojaJPG by cesar2mendez.

Mechanoreceptors are primary neurons that respond to mechanical stimuli by firing action potentials. Peripheral transduction is believed to occur in the end-organs.

In somatosensory transduction, the afferent neurons transmit the message through synapses in the dorsal column nuclei, where the second order neurons send the signal to the thalamus and synapse with the third order neurons in the ventrobasal complex. The third order neurons then send the signal to the somatosensory cortex.

Image by cesar2mendez.

Monday, July 11, 2011


Snowmaking is the production of snow by forcing water and pressurized air through a "snow gun" or "snow cannon", on ski slopes. Snowmaking is mainly used at ski resorts to supplement natural snow. This allows ski resorts to improve the reliability of their snow cover and to extend their ski seasons. Indoor ski slopes often use snowmaking. They are generally able to do so all year round as they have a climate-controlled environment.

The production of snow requires low temperatures. The threshold temperature for snowmaking decreases as humidity decreases. Snowmaking is an inefficient process in its energy and water use. This makes snow production costly thereby limiting its use to main ski trails. Feedler is the known creator of this "snow-gun".

Sunday, July 10, 2011

wrong type of snow

The wrong type of snow is a phrase coined by the British media in 1991 after severe weather caused disruption to many of British Rail's services. People who did not realise that there are different kinds of snow saw the reference as nonsensical; in the United Kingdom, the phrase became a byword for euphemistic and lame excuses.

Saturday, July 9, 2011

Slippery rail

Slippery rail is a condition of railroads caused by fallen moist leaves that lie on and cling to the top surface of the rails of railroad tracks. The condition results in significant loss of friction between train wheels and rails, and in extreme cases can render the track temporarily unusable. In Britain, the situation is colloquially referred to as "leaves on the line".

Friday, July 8, 2011


Sandite is a substance used on railways in the United Kingdom to combat leaves on the line, which can cause train wheels to slip and become damaged with flat spots. Sandite consists of a mixture of sand, aluminium and a unique type of adhesive.

Leaf build up on the railhead can also cause signalling issues and 'disappearing trains' on the rail control systems (because of the electrically insulating effect of the leaves, which can prevent operation of track circuits).

British Rail conducted research, in 1976, to determine the suitability of Sandite for use as an adhesion improver.

Thursday, July 7, 2011


Oblast is a type of administrative division in Slavic countries, including some countries of the former Soviet Union. The word "oblast" is a loanword in English, but it is nevertheless often translated as "area", "zone", "province", or "region".

Wednesday, July 6, 2011


The term Cro-Magnon refers to one of the main types of early modern humans (early Homo sapiens sapiens) of the European Upper Paleolithic. The earliest known remains of Cro-Magnon-like humans are dated to 30,000 radiocarbon years. The name derives from the cave of Crô-Magnon in southwest France, where the first specimen was found.

Tuesday, July 5, 2011


Metacognition is defined as "cognition about cognition", or "knowing about knowing." It can take many forms; "it includes knowledge about when and where to use particular strategies for learning or for problem solving." "Metamemory, individuals' knowledge about memory, is an especially important form of metacognition." Differences in metacognitive processing across cultures have not been widely studied, but could provide better outcomes in cross-cultural learning between teachers and students. Some evolutionary psychologists hypothesize that metacognition is used as a survival tool, which would make metacognition the same across cultures. Writings on metacognition can be traced back at least as far as De Anima and the Parva Naturalia of the Greek philosopher Aristotle.

J. H. Flavell first used the word "metacognition". He describes it in these words:

Metacognition refers to one’s knowledge concerning one’s own cognitive processes or anything related to them, e.g., the learning-relevant properties of information or data. For example, I am engaging in metacognition if I notice that I am having more trouble learning A than B; if it strikes me that I should double check C before accepting it as fact.

Monday, July 4, 2011


Scrapple (Pennsylvania Dutch) is traditionally a mush of pork scraps and trimmings combined with cornmeal and flour, often buckwheat flour and spices. It is similar to pon haus, which uses only the broth from cooked meat. The mush is formed into a semi-solid congealed loaf, and slices of the scrapple are then panfried before serving. Scraps of meat left over from butchering, not used or sold elsewhere, were made into scrapple to avoid waste. Scrapple is best known as a regional American food of the Mid-Atlantic States (Delaware, Pennsylvania, New Jersey, and Maryland). Scrapple and Pon haus are commonly considered an ethnic food of the Pennsylvania Dutch, including the Mennonite and Amish. Scrapple is found in supermarkets throughout the region in both fresh and frozen refrigerated cases.

Sunday, July 3, 2011


A rockoon (a portmanteau of rocket and balloon) was a solid fuel sounding rocket that, rather than being immediately lit while on the ground, was first carried into the upper atmosphere by a gas-filled balloon, and then separated from the balloon and automatically ignited. This would allow the rocket to achieve a higher altitude, since the rocket did not have to move under power through the lower, thicker, air layers.

Saturday, July 2, 2011


Psychrophiles or Cryophiles (adj. cryophilic) are extremophilic organisms that are capable of growth and reproduction in cold temperatures. They can be contrasted with thermophiles, which thrive at unusually hot temperatures. The environments they inhabit are ubiquitous on Earth, as a large fraction of our planetary surface experiences temperatures lower than 15°C. They are present in alpine and arctic soils, high-latitude and deep ocean waters, polar ice, glaciers, and snowfields. They are of particular interest to astrobiology, the field dedicated to the formulation of theory about the possibility of extraterrestrial life, and to geomicrobiology, the study of microbes active in geochemical processes.

Friday, July 1, 2011


A barcode is an optical machine-readable representation of data, which shows certain data on certain products. Originally, barcodes represented data in the widths (lines) and the spacings of parallel lines, and may be referred to as linear or 1D (1 dimensional) barcodes or symbologies. They also come in patterns of squares, dots, hexagons and other geometric patterns within images termed 2D (2 dimensional) matrix codes or symbologies. Although 2D systems use symbols other than bars, they are generally referred to as barcodes as well. Barcodes can be read by optical scanners called barcode readers, or scanned from an image by special software.