Author Topic: Sharpen Your General Knowledge  (Read 21389 times)

Offline Shamim Ansary

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Sharpen Your General Knowledge
« on: February 19, 2011, 03:09:01 PM »
All the information of this board has been quoted from http://www.bigsiteofamazingfacts.com/

How many paintings did Pablo Picasso paint and did he paint everything in sight?

Pablo Diego José Francisco de Paula Juan Nepomuceno María de los Remedios Cipriano de la Santísima Trinidad Ruiz y Picasso didn’t “paint everything in sight,” but he was a prolific painter in many senses of the word.

He produced over 15,000 paintings in his lifetime—working on three or more canvases a day—and he also painted on surfaces other than canvas.

The story goes that while renting an apartment in Barcelona in 1900, the newly whitewashed walls were too great a temptation for him. He lavishly decorated them with paintings.

His landlord was unimpressed and told him he must pay to have them repainted. Picasso snippily remarked later, after becoming successful,

“He could have sold the whole wall for a fortune if he had only had the sense to leave it.”
« Last Edit: August 13, 2011, 09:32:43 AM by Shamim Ansary »
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Offline Shamim Ansary

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Re: Sharpen Your General Knowledge
« Reply #1 on: February 19, 2011, 03:10:56 PM »
What Other Paintings Did James Whistler Paint Besides Whistler’s Mother?

The painting Whistler’s Mother (we have seen a film on it named Mr. Bean) has given people the impression that James Whistler was a sentimental Norman Rockwell sort of fellow, but Whistler’s Mother wasn’t his normal style.

Most of Whistler’s paintings were more abstract.

On this occasion, he painted his reluctant mom in a straight-backed wooden chair only because his scheduled model hadn’t shown up.

Despite this one painting, Whistler loved seeing himself as a shocking rebel against the art establishment and presented himself and his work in ways to keep that image alive.

In one of his public melodramas, he sued English art critic John Ruskin for libel after Ruskin wrote a scathing review of his artwork.

After a long and bombastic trial, the jury agreed that Whistler had been libeled, and awarded him damages of one farthing, about a quarter of a cent.

For his “victory,” Whistler was bankrupted by legal fees and lost his house and furniture.

Ironically, he was also forced into backtracking away from his confrontational style and into more commercial, conventional etchings.

Ruskin, for his part, was so outraged by the verdict against him that he stopped writing reviews, resigned from Oxford University, and became a bitter, antisocial recluse.
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Offline Shamim Ansary

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Re: Sharpen Your General Knowledge
« Reply #2 on: February 20, 2011, 10:15:34 AM »
Why Does the Moon Go Around the Earth?

Almost everything in the universe travels in a circular path. The moon goes around the earth, the earth goes around the sun, and even the sun revolves around the center of our galaxy. This is because of two basic laws of science.

First, an object moving in space, where there is no air to slow it down, will continue to move forever once it begins in motion. The moon has been moving through space ever since it was formed billions of years ago.

But the gravity of the earth pulls the moon toward us. This gravity isn’t strong enough to pull the moon into the earth, but it holds the moon at a certain distance from the earth, where the gravity of the earth, the sun, and the planets are balanced.

So the moon keeps moving around the earth at that distance, traveling in a circular path called an orbit. And the earth goes around the sun for the same reason.
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Offline Shamim Ansary

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Re: Sharpen Your General Knowledge
« Reply #3 on: February 20, 2011, 05:50:41 PM »
Was the White House In Washington, D.C. Always White and What Color Was It Before?

The White House in Washington, D.C. was not always white.

Back when it was called the “Presidential Palace,” it was made of brownstone.

However, in 1814 the British captured Washington, D.C., and burned many government buildings, including the Palace and the Capitol.

So much of its shell was charred from fire that painting the building became necessary.

White covered the burn marks well and brightened the place up.

It had never looked much like a palace anyway, and even less so with bright white paint, so people stopped calling it the Palace and started calling it “the white house.”

Teddy Roosevelt made the popular name official when he had “Theodore Roosevelt, The White House” printed on his presidential stationery.
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Offline Shamim Ansary

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Re: Sharpen Your General Knowledge
« Reply #4 on: February 20, 2011, 05:52:21 PM »
Why Does the Same Side Of the Moon Always Face the Earth?

It does seem like a pretty strange coincidence that the moon would rotate at exactly the same rate that it revolves around the Earth.

But of course it’s no coincidence at all.

When the moon was much closer to the Earth than it is now, the Earth’s gravity distorted the moon slightly, so that it’s somewhat egg shaped.

As a result, the pull on the moon is now slightly stronger on the pointy end, keeping it always faced toward us.
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Re: Sharpen Your General Knowledge
« Reply #5 on: February 20, 2011, 05:53:17 PM »
When did humans appear on Earth?

This is not an easy question to answer. Debates rage over which fossils can be called truly hominoid (humanlike), or hominid (human).

The development of human characteristics took place over millions of years. The earliest primate (an order of mammals that includes humans, apes, and monkeys), no bigger than a rat, appeared 60 million years ago.

About 10 million years ago, the Ramapithecus showed remarkable hominoid attributes. But there is no further evidence until 6 million years later.

The first generally accepted hominoid is called Australopithecus, and some believe they are actually the most primitive of the human lineage.

Homo habilis, dating back at least 2 million years in modern-day Africa, is undisputedly human. Less than a half-million years later, Homo erectus lived in Africa as well as in Asia and Europe.

A fossil skull fragment discovered in England is the oldest known example of modern-day humans: a 300,000-year-old Homo sapien.
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Re: Sharpen Your General Knowledge
« Reply #6 on: February 23, 2011, 02:53:23 PM »
Did Dinosaurs and Humans Ever Coexist On Earth?

Dinosaurs and humans did not coexist on earth.

Dinosaurs first appeared in the Triassic period, about 220 million years ago, and disappeared at the end of the Cretaceous period, about 65 million years ago.

Modern humans (Homo sapiens) appeared only about 25,000 years ago.

Movies that show humans and dinosaurs existing together are only Hollywood fantasies.
« Last Edit: February 23, 2011, 02:55:59 PM by Shamim Ansary »
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Re: Sharpen Your General Knowledge
« Reply #7 on: February 23, 2011, 03:11:17 PM »
What stops Earth from crashing into the Sun if the Sun’s gravitational force is so strong?

When Earth formed, it created its own gravitational force, enhanced by spinning, or rotating.

This kept the collected material together. Without the Sun’s gravity, Earth would go spinning off into space, but without Earth’s own gravity in conjunction with the gravitational force from other planets, it would be drawn into the Sun.

So, while the Sun pulls Earth toward it, the cumulative gravity of Earth and the other planets keeps it in its orbit around the Sun. Think of it as a multiple tug-of-war.
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Re: Sharpen Your General Knowledge
« Reply #8 on: February 23, 2011, 05:06:26 PM »
How do we know how dinosaurs lived when all we have are fossils?

It is amazing how much can be deciphered from a fossil.

For instance, scientists can often tell what dinosaurs ate by studying their fossil remains. If a fossil of a dinosaur shows that it had sharp teeth and claws, scientists can figure that it was a meat-eating dinosaur.

Meat-eating dinosaurs were bipedal, which allowed them to run swiftly after prey. If a fossil seems to show that the living creature walked on two legs, that might also indicate that it ate other animals.

Plant-eaters had teeth suitable for grinding vegetation. Many were quadrupeds, meaning they walked on four legs. Fossils with these characteristics are of plant-eating dinosaurs.

The depth of fossilized footprints can be used to calculate the weight of dinosaurs. Some of the most impressive fossils are those of dinosaur tracks. Footprints also confirm that many dinosaurs traveled in groups, with younger dinosaurs in the middle of the herd where they would be protected.

These were herbivorous dinosaurs, their social structure resembling herd animals (such as water buffalo) of today.
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Re: Sharpen Your General Knowledge
« Reply #9 on: February 24, 2011, 10:37:22 AM »
Why Is Africa Called the “Birthplace of the Human Race”

Africa is called the birthplace of the human race because scientists have found fossilized bones of human ancestors in eastern and southern Africa that are the oldest of any in the world.

They believe that humans gradually moved out of Africa to populate the rest of the world.

The earliest Homo sapiens, or modern human, found in Ethiopia can be dated back to about 200,000 years ago.

Most scientists believe that the human species originated from the African continent.

Fossil remains of several species of early apelike humans believed to have evolved into modern man, such as Australopithecus afarensis from about 3 million years B.C. have been discovered.
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Re: Sharpen Your General Knowledge
« Reply #10 on: February 24, 2011, 03:14:43 PM »
Why do Fireflies and Lightning Bugs Glow in the Dark and what causes it?

Fireflies glow in the dark to attract mates. Males fly around flashing the world in a pattern of dots and dashes that is very specific to their species.

Female fireflies wait until a male flying nearby flashes the correct signal for their species, and in return, she flashes him with her own light. They meet and create beautiful luminescence together.

Light production in fireflies or lightning bugs is due to a type of chemical reaction called bioluminescence. This process takes place in specialised light-emitting organs, usually on a firefly’s lower abdomen or belly. Enzymes, in the presence of magnesium ions and oxygen produce light.

The enzyme is also useful in the medical industry.

The females of some firefly species prey on the males of other species. They lure the males by imitating the mating signals of the other species.

A oblivious suitor flying too close gets eaten.
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Re: Sharpen Your General Knowledge
« Reply #11 on: February 26, 2011, 11:21:57 AM »
Is the Weather Warmest When the Earth Is Closest to the Sun?

Surprisingly, the earth’s distance from the sun has nothing to do with weather!

The earth’s path around the sun is not a perfect circle, but an ellipse, or egg shape. The earth is actually nearest the sun around January 2, when it’s “only” 91,402,000 miles away. This point is called the perihelion. At the earth’s aphelion, or farthest point from the sun, it’s 94,510,000 miles away. And this point falls around July 5.

Why is our weather coldest when the earth is closest to the sun? Because weather is determined mostly by the tilt of the earth’s axis at various times of the year.

When it’s winter here, the earth is tilted in such a way that much of the sun’s radiation reaches us at an angle, and bounces off our atmosphere. In summer, the sun’s rays reach us more directly, and therefore the weather is warmer. Also, in winter the days are shorter, and much of the sun’s heat is reflected off the earth by snow.

The earth doesn’t travel around the sun at a constant speed, either; the speed varies at different points in the earth’s orbit!
« Last Edit: February 26, 2011, 11:23:44 AM by Shamim Ansary »
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Re: Sharpen Your General Knowledge
« Reply #12 on: February 26, 2011, 11:33:28 AM »
Why Do Some People Snore?

When you are asleep and relaxed, and breathing through your mouth rather than through your nose, the air coming out causes your soft palate, the tissue at the back and top of your mouth, to flutter back and forth. This fluttering, or vibration, makes a sound called a snore. Often this vibration causes the cheeks, lips, and nostrils to vibrate as well, causing an even louder snore.

Although many ways have been tried to stop snoring from tying a bandage from the chin to the top of the head to keep the mouth closed, to actually removing part of the soft palate, no one has found a sure-fire method. However, some people claim that if you sleep on your side rather than on your back, you are less likely to snore. Nobody knows why, but men snore more than women and children.

The loudest snore recorded has been measured at 69 decibels, or almost as loud as a pneumatic drill!
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Re: Sharpen Your General Knowledge
« Reply #13 on: February 27, 2011, 11:01:39 AM »
How does latitude affect or determine the climate on Earth?

Latitude helps determine the temperature of a locale. Since one of the most important factors of climate is the amount of energy, or radiation, received from the Sun (heat), latitude plays a critical role.

Climatologists (people who study climate) use the word insolation for energy that reaches Earth from the Sun. The word combines syllables from the phrase incoming solar radiation. Sunlight is the obvious sign of insolation, but the Sun’s radiation reaches the earth on a cloudy day too. The angle and duration of insolation, which translates into surface temperature, changes depending on latitude.

Because Earth is spherical, when it orbits the Sun, the Sun’s rays hit Earth’s surface directly at the equator and at angles near the poles. Direct insolation is stronger than slanted contact.

Earth also tilts on its axis, so when the Southern Hemisphere is closer to the Sun, it has more hours of daylight than the Northern Hemisphere, and vice versa. At the equator, the hours of night and day remain 12 hours each. But most of us have experienced the shorter days of winter and the longer days of summer that come from Earth rotating at a tilt.

Latitudes that receive direct insolation for many hours a day tend to have warmer climates, such as at the equator. Latitudes toward the North and South Poles get angled insolation for fewer hours overall, and have colder climates.

The longitudinal angle of New York City is 74° west, making the latitudinal and longitudinal coordinates for New York City 40° north and 74° west.
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Re: Sharpen Your General Knowledge
« Reply #14 on: February 27, 2011, 11:45:05 AM »
Why are summer days longer than winter days?

Summer days longer than winter days the same reason that Earth has seasons: because Earth’s axis is tilted in relation to the Sun.

If the axis were straight up and down, different parts of the world would still have different lengths of daylight and darkness, but they would remain constant throughout the year.

When the Northern Hemisphere, or half, of Earth is tilted toward the Sun, the Sun’s rays hit it more directly.

The more direct—and therefore warmer—sunshine creates summer in the Northern Hemisphere. The tilt of Earth also makes the Northern Hemisphere experience longer days during this time, and the Sun appears to pass higher in the sky.

Six months later, Earth has moved halfway through its orbit, and the Southern Hemisphere is tilted toward the Sun. This means it is summer in the Southern Hemisphere and winter in the Northern Hemisphere.

You can see the change in the angle of the Sun very gradually over the course of several months. In the Northern Hemisphere, the Sun climbs higher in the sky each day as summer approaches, until one day—on or about June 21—it seems to stop getting higher.

After that, it drops lower each day as winter comes closer. Then it stops—on about December 21—and begins to climb higher again. June 21 is called the summer solstice, or “summer sun standing still”; December 21 is the winter solstice, or “winter sun standing still.” In the Southern Hemisphere, summer and winter are reversed.

Earth is divided into two sets of hemispheres. The equator divides the Northern and Southern Hemispheres.

The Eastern and Western Hemispheres are divided by the 0° meridian, or the prime meridian, on one side of the globe and the 180° meridian on the other (both not shown).

The two dotted lines show the tropics of Cancer (north of the equator) and Capricorn (south of the equator). Within these two imaginary lines the Sun’s rays are strongest.

You should never look directly at the Sun. The light is so powerful that it could damage your eyes.
"Many thanks to Allah who gave us life after having given us death and (our) final return (on the Day of Qiyaamah (Judgement)) is to Him"