Science & Technology

  1. Tax Words To Learn Right Now (Or At Least Before April 15)

    As the saying goes, there are only two certainties in life: death and taxes. This saying dates all the way back to 1716, and the word tax is even older than that. Tax, meaning “a sum of money demanded by a government,” comes from the Latin taxare, meaning “censure, charge, tax with a fault,” and dates to around the 1200s. For centuries, taxes have been …

  2. What Are The Different Names For Our Moon?

  3. Getty

    Where Does The Word “Dracula” Come From?

    What comes to your mind when you see or hear the word Dracula? Probably vampires, right? But what about ruthless Romanian royalty … or dragons? It’s time for the story of Dracula—the word. Where does the character Dracula come from? We dress up as vampires on Halloween and watch dramas like True Blood thanks in large part to Irish author Bram Stoker, whose 1897 Gothic …

  4. What Are The Words For The Biggest Numbers In Existence?

  5. Seven Essential Words Of Fall

  6. Getty

    Why Is Planet Mars Named “Mars”?

    Mars, the fourth planet from the sun, is our neighbor, and it has long captivated the human mind and spirit. Think of Martians, a go-to word for extraterrestrial life since science-fiction imagined inhabitants there in the late 19th century. But, how did Mars it get its name? Who is the mythological Mars? The planet Mars is named after the Roman god of war, Mars, considered …

  7. Getty

    How “Burnout” Went From A Casual Expression To A Weighted Word

    by Ashley AustrewMost of us are familiar with the concept of being burned out. It’s that feeling you get when you’re stressed, overwhelmed, and simply don’t have any more energy to devote to a given task, activity, … or career. Traditionally, the word burnout has been used more as a self-diagnosis or casual expression rather than treated as a medical syndrome or mental health problem. …

  8. Getty

    Do You Know The Names For The Different Types Of Fireworks?

    On Independence Day (July 4th), we “ooh” and “ahh” at the fireworks bursting in air, but did you know that different types of effects fireworks make have their own names? What’s a peony firework? The peony is one of the most common kinds of aerial pyrotechnic effects. It is named for a variety of plants with large, showy flowers. This firework display has a flower-like explosion …

  9. Getty

    Is An “Equinox” The Same As A “Solstice”?

    For centuries, humans have used different markers to note the changing seasons. The harvest moon has popularly been used to announce the fall, just as Groundhog Day tells us whether or not spring is on schedule. But, seasonal change owes much more to the equinox and the solstice than to groundhogs. What is an equinox? First, because we’re a dictionary and all, we’ll look at …

  10. Getty

    What’s It Called When You Can “Taste” A Word Or “See” A Sound?

    Is it possible to see a taste? Or taste a word? The answer is yes, sort of. What is synesthesia? An involuntary neurological condition called synesthesia, which is also spelled synaesthesia, describes a version of this experience.Synesthesia is “a sensation produced in one modality when a stimulus is applied to another modality, as when the hearing of a certain sound induces the visualization of a certain …