This holiday season, the people of Japan are dealing with an unusual food crisis - a butter shortage! Though that would not be a problem any other time of the year, it is during Christmas, because of an age-old Japanese tradition of celebrating the day with a delectable strawberry and cream sponge cake that is baked with . . . lots of butter!
Kids News - Did You Know Articles
If the sun appears to set a little earlier (or later) this Sunday, it is not your imagination. That's because depending on where you live, December 21st will be the shortest or longest day of 2014. Also known as the winter (or summer) solstice, it marks the official start of winter for the residents of the Northern Hemisphere and summer for those that live in the Southern Hemisphere.
The "Field with irises near Arles" is one of Dutch artist Van Gogh's most famous paintings. Believed to have been the first of the 130 paintings the artist created while at the Saint Paul-de-Mausole asylum in Saint-Remy, France, it is amongst his most recognized and coveted masterpieces. Not surprisingly, the painting has been extremely well-preserved and looks as good as when the artist first painted it, except for one thing - the once purple irises have started to turn blue.
With their large flattened heads, small beady eyes and slimy skins, Japanese giant salamanders are not destined to take home the prize for "best-looking". However, according to a team of scientists they may just be eligible for the most "awesome dad" award, at least amongst amphibian males who are not known for their nurturing personalities.
The Golden Gate, a three-mile long by one-mile wide strait that connects San Francisco Bay to the Pacific Ocean, is known for many things - its namesake bridge, beautiful views and the most importantly (at least for seamen), a notoriously heavy fog layer that often encompasses the area. Though foghorns have now been installed to guide ships to the ports of San Francisco, Oakland and Richmond, such was not the case a century ago. It is therefore not surprising to hear that hundreds of ships have veered off course and sunk, whilst trying to cross the area. Amongst the most poignant loss was that of the SS City of Rio de Janeiro, a tragedy that is often referred to as "The Golden Gate Titanic".
The next time you eat a piece of chocolate, be sure to savor it, because according to two of the world's largest chocolate makers - Mars, Inc. and Barry Callebaut, the decadent treat may soon be in short supply. The problem? We are consuming the candy at a faster pace than farmers can grow cocoa.
After a day's delay caused by a wayward boat, bad weather, and some technical problems, NASA's next generation spacecraft Orion, blasted off to space from Cape Canaveral, Florida, at 7.05 EST on Friday, December 5th. Perched atop a Delta 4 heavy rocket, it soared through the Earth's atmosphere and disappeared into space.
If you have ever tried a new sport or attempted learning a musical instrument, you are well aware that the hardest part is getting started. Once you figure out the technique, the skills return fairly easily, even if they are not used for long periods of time. Most experts attribute this to "muscle memory," which means the brain remembers the action and can recall it when needed. Now some researchers from John Hopkins University, believe there is another factor that may be as important in recalling previously learned motor skills - the errors made while learning the task.