How do we see Color?

How do you know if a banana is raw, ripe or rotten? Well, you could obviously take a bite and tell, but most of the times, you can tell just by looking. Especially if we’re talking about rotten bananas. A raw banana would look green, a ripe one would be yellow and a rotten one is most likely blackened. Have you wondered how we know the difference between these different colors? Let’s find out.

What are Colors?

All the colors we perceive are an effect of light. The seemingly colorless sunlight actually contains all the colors we can see, but at different wavelengths. In fact, color itself, is light of a particular wavelength, reflected.

When sunlight falls on an object, the surface of the object absorbs some of the light and reflects the rest of it. Which wavelengths of light are reflected or absorbed depends on the properties of the object.

So say the object is a ripe banana, it would absorb all the wavelengths of light except the ones that correspond to the color yellow. And we would thus see that a banana is yellow. This property of the object changes as the object changes, which is why a raw banana would look green, and a rotting banana would appear blackish.

Why do we see different Colors?

How do we know which color is which, i.e. how does our brain know the difference between these colors?

We have a tiny area called the fovea centralis all the way at the back of our eyes that is responsible for us seeing color. This area has millions of light receptors called cones and rods which react to light and tell our brains what colors we see. The cones in our eyes are active in light-rich environments and respond most strongly to the colors red, green and blue, in that order. So when we see the banana, the light from the banana hits the cones, stimulating them. They send the message across to our brain via our optic nerves, which processes the information and tells us what color we’re looking at. And we then know whether the banana is raw, ripe, or rotting.

The rods in our eyes are active in low-light environments, where cones fail to perform, but they perceive black and white, which is why it becomes difficult to determine the color of objects at night, or in very dim lighting.

How are Colors and Wavelengths related?

You now know that different colors have different wavelengths. The human brain can only recognize colors that have wavelengths within the visible spectrum. Colors that have wavelengths that are either less or more than this visible spectrum are invisible to us. Here’s where it gets interesting. The visible spectrum is different for different organisms. In fact, for some insects/ birds and fish, the visible spectrum is much wider, because they have more types of cones in their retina. Some organisms can even see ultraviolet light. This means that while we can see that a banana is yellow, with some black lines, a bee might see many more patterns, or maybe even more colors on the same banana. How’s that for a fun fact?

Related Article : Watch our video to understand the Sense of Sight.

Top 10 Weirdest Animals in the World

List of the Strange Looking Creatures ever!

1. Venezuelan Poodle Moth

Have you seen something between a dog and a month? Well, check this guy out! A Venezuelan poodle moth is a mysterious creature that confuses everyone and very little is known about it. From the looks of it, this insect is a great blend between a large moth and a bright, fluffy white poodle! How weird is that?

2. Red-lipped Batfish

This fish not only looks really weird but is a very bad swimmer too! It uses its pectoral fins to walk at the bottom of the ocean rather than swim! Oh oh.

3. Panda Ant

These ants look cute, right? But mind you, these sting really hard. Found in Chile, these ants have extremely painful stings, hence the common name cow killer or cow ant.

4. Harp Sponge

This creature lives at the depths of 10,800–11,500 feet and was first discovered at off the coast of California. Though this creature looks like a humble instrument, it is a carnivore and will eat just about anything it likes.

5. Star-nose mole

Look from the front and this creature will surely freak you out. This mole has a an odd tentacle-type nose. In reality, these 11 pairs of appendages on the snout are quite amazing. These tentacles have over 25,000 sensory receptors. It is believed that this sensory apparatus can detect seismic waves as well.

6. Blobfish

This thing by far is the most ugliest of the lot. The jelly like flesh of this fish is less dense than water so they tend to just float above the sea floor without doing much. These guys are not great at hunting as well. So they just hang around till food comes to them.

7. Squid with Teeth

This one is right out of anyone’s nightmare. Here is a squid with actual teeth! Promachoteuthis Sulcus is an extremely rare deep sea squid that has a mouth that looks just like it belongs to a real human. Gross, right?

8. Saiga Antelope

This Antelope is one of the world’s most ancient mammals! Believe it or not, this animal has shared the world with saber-toothed tigers and woolly mammoths, 250,000 years ago! May you keep living forever Saiga Antelope!

9. Giant Coconut Crab

This crab is known as the robber crab or the palm thief. It is also the largest of its kind and weighs up to 4.1 Kilograms. This crab is so strong that it can break open coconuts with its pincers!

10. Christmas Tree Worm

Let’s sum-up this list on a happy note. Here’s a cool Christmas tree worm that lives on tropical coral reefs and is found around the world. Each worm is about one and a half inches long and has two fir tree-like protrusions, cause the more the merrier, right?

Similar Article : Check out the list of 10 Tiniest Animals in the World.

The Giant’s Causeway

Where is the Giant’s Causeway?

I’m working on my Irish Accent! I’m at the Giant’s Causeway, or Giant’s Causey, as it’s called here, in the County Antrim in Northern Ireland. Made up of around 40,000 interlocking basalt columns, this is the fourth greatest natural wonder in the United Kingdom as well as a UN World Heritage Site. It also happens to be an extremely popular tourist attraction.

The Geology of Giant’s Causeway

The structure is estimated to have been formed around 50-60 million years ago, due to severe volcanic activity and subsequent cooling down. Not that this in itself isn’t interesting enough, but the place has an even more interesting legend associated with it. Legend has it that the columns are actually the remnants of a causeway built by a Giant. The Irish giant Finn MacCool was challenged to a fight by the Scottish giant Benandonner. Finn is said to have risen to the challenge, and built the causeway so as to meet the Scot and fight. There are multiple versions regarding the outcome of the fight, and each of them is interestingly detailed. I so very much want to believe that giants were real!

After the National Trust took over its care in the 1960s, tourism flourished and the site has been popular with tourists ever since. There are plenty of interesting structures to see here, including the very innovatively designed Giant’s Causeway Visiting Centre, which blends perfectly with the landscape. It boasts of beautiful glass walls supported by basalt columns, with award winning interior design.

This is a good place to visit, whether you’re in the mood for a picnic lunch or a hearth pumping hike. There are 4 stunning trails to choose from, with varying difficult levels ranging from babies and pet –friendly to challenging coastal hikes. In fact, there’s a newly accessible cliff top walk for people with disabilities as well! Definitely a cool place to visit if you’re ever in Northern Ireland.

Why do we get Nervous?

What is Nervousness?

Nervousness happens to all- children or adults. It is the anxiety that you feel and makes your body tensed. Your body is getting ready for something that is new- maybe exciting as well, like a hiking trip the next day and you cannot sleep the entire night.

When do we get Nervous?

You feel nervous when you do something new or exciting. Also when you face challenging and difficult tasks, you feel nervous. Such feelings of nervousness arise before the activity and usually start going away once you begin that task.

What happens when we get Nervous?

When you are tensed, your body releases a hormone called adrenaline which prepares your body to face the situation. This adrenaline causes physical symptoms like sweating or heavy breathing that tell that you are getting nervous. Adrenaline sends blood rushing to the most important parts of your body like the stomach and the heart. Thus you might feel butterflies in your stomach or heartbeat racing when you feel nervous.

When God Came To Earth – Story

Moco Star

Name: Akshat Goel
Age: 11
Class: VII
School: Bhavan Vidyalaya, Panchkula, Punjab

The Earth is a nice place!

Once, there was a meeting of all the gods in heavens. But God Indra slept till late and made himself absent. The gods got angry. They gave Indra a very difficult task.

The task was to inspect the Earth and its worldly affairs. He started from India. As usual, he was in a common man’s disguise.

He moved towards the rich locality of the town. He disguised himself as a beggar and knocked at a door. When he asked for night’s stay, the rich lady was annoyed, but considering him a yogi, she gave him a little corner in the basement.

At night, when gods were monitoring Indra’s activities, the saw him filling a hole in the wall by magical cement, so that it couldn’t break. They asked him through telepathy that why did he do so. He replied, “ I saw some gold in the wall’s cavity, but in a house where even a yogi is treated badly owners don’t deserve rewards.”

The next day he again started moving towards the slum areas of the town, in the same disguise. He reached at an old couple’s hut and asked for food and water and a place to stay at night. The old couple was obliged to see the yogi and gave him everything they had.

The next day, the old couple’s cow was dead. Once again the gods asked him that why he took the couple’s cow when they treated him so fairly. He replied, “ At night when I was half-awake, God Yama came to take the old lady. I thought that the old man would be helpless without the lady. So I gave the cow instead.” The gods were satisfied with Indra’s answer.

After some days of adventure, he began to check out the environmental conditions. He saw that the wastage of electricity, food and water was a common practice nowadays.

But he saw that campaigns were also being carried out to make people aware. Many children have stopped wastage because they have learnt the value of resources.

He was happy. In the heavens, when he was asked for a report, he only said this much, “The Earth is a nice place and I have set some things right on it.” The Gods were satisfied.

Indra had done his duty. It is now the responsibility of humans to take care of Mother Earth and also let the milk of kindness, love and brotherhood flow in the world.

Note: Don’t forget to check out the Mocostar of Mocomi.

Milk Teeth and Why we lose them?

You sleep at night with your milk tooth beside your bed or under your pillow for the tooth fairy to come and take it and give you a gift in return. Ever wondered why do you have these brittle milk teeth, which we lose as we grow up?

Why are they called Milk Teeth?

Milk teeth are also known as deciduous teeth or temporary teeth or baby teeth. We all have milk teeth when we grow up. They are the first set of teeth that come out. When a baby is born, it is born without any teeth, since the skull and the jaws of the infant are not yet developed. As the infant grows, the skull and jaw begins to develop. Thus, the first set of teeth or the primary teeth start to come out. But even then, the skull and jaw of a child is still developing. It is not yet developed as in the case of adults. Thus, the milk teeth start falling at the age of 6 or 7.

Milk teeth, when they fall, provide the space and guide the permanent teeth to erupt. The milk teeth shape the jaw bones and muscles. Thus when they fall off, they leave that space for the permanent teeth to grow in and give the jaw bones and muscles the correct structure. Therefore, milk teeth help in developing the Oral Cavity of a child. Milk teeth also help in the development of a child’s speech and in chewing food. The roots of these milk teeth provide a solid space and structure for the permanent teeth to grow.

The infant human skull is very small to hold the 32 permanent teeth which adults have. Thus, a child till the age of 6 will have 20 primary teeth. As they keep developing the jaw, the primary or milk teeth start becoming loose. Then they eventually fall of one by one, making way for the permanent teeth to come out. The roots of the milk teeth provide an opening for the permanent teeth to come up, with proper spacing between each tooth. Thus at the age of 6 or 7, the jaw of the child is developed and thus the milk teeth start to fall off.

What happens after the baby tooth has fallen?

A permanent tooth starts taking the place of the fallen baby tooth. This tooth begins to push its way up through the gums. This happens after the age of 6 when the child starts developing the first set of incisor and molar teeth. The two central incisors or the two teeth on the upper jaw and two on the lower jaw are the first ones to drop and the first set of permanent teeth to come out. Next the canines or the premolars which are the first and second teeth on either side of the central incisors are replaced only between the ages of 10 to 13.

What to do with the fallen tooth?

Many countries have various traditions about the fallen milk tooth. The falling off of the primary tooth and gaining the permanent set of teeth is considered as a very important aspect of entering into adulthood. In some countries people believe that the baby tooth should be thrown in a specific direct and a wish be made. In the Western countries people believe in leaving the tooth under their pillows at night or bury them in the ground, and the tooth fairy will come and collect it, giving some gift in return.

5 Fun Facts about Milk Teeth

  1. On an average, we lose 14 teeth from the age of 6 to 13- seven each from the upper and lower jaws.
  2. The set of milk teeth start developing not after the birth of a baby, but when the baby is just an embryo inside its mother’s womb. They become visible only after few months of the birth of the infant.
  3. If your milk tooth is wiggly, never try to pull it out. Let it take its own time to come out and leave the roots undamaged.
  4. Humans have 20 baby teeth and 32 permanent teeth. Mammals like dogs and cats have two sets of teeth- one is their entire set of baby teeth which they lose in a few months, and next is their entire new set of permanent teeth.
  5. Dolphins and other whales have only one set of teeth. Elephants, who do tough jobs with their teeth, have to go through six set of molar teeth!

Related Article:
Read more Interesting Facts about Teeth.

Laugh all you want!

People who laugh a lot are much healthier than those who don’t. Dr. Lee Berk at the Loma Linda School of Public Health in California found that laughing lowers levels of stress hormones, and strengthens the immune system. Some studies have reported that laughing for at least fifteen minutes can add around 2 days to your overall lifespan. Live long and…laugh!

Looking for more Health Tip articles? Go to: Quack A Tip for Kids.

Somniphobia – The Fear of Sleep

A good night’s sleep allows the body to rejuvenate, relax and make you prepared for the next day. But some people dread going to sleep which results in the decline of their physical and mental states.

What is Somniphobia?

The fear of sleep or Somniphobia is a latin word derived from somini meaning sleep.

The most common cause of Somniphobia is the fear of having nightmares or a trigger of an event which might have happened during sleeps and causes severe anxiety in a person.

Due to Somniphibia people tend to end up sleepwalking and even a severe condition like Thanatophibia- which is the fear of dying in sleep.

People who have existing anxiety disorders might find it very difficult to fall asleep. Even if they do fall asleep they tend to have scary nightmares which then make it difficult to sleep further.

The fear of the unknown, horror movies also trigger somniphobia and can scare a person beyond control.

If you want to know more about Phobias, click here.

Giant Panda Facts and Information

Giant pandas like Po are chiefly found in China and are the rarest members of the bear family. The Chinese word for panda is ‘Da Xiong Mao’ which means Big Bear Cat.

Physical Features and Eating Habits

The bamboo plant has immense importance in a giant panda’s life. Each day, pandas spend at least twelve hours eating bamboo. Pandas have five fingers and a special wrist bone which they use as their thumbs which help them grasp bamboo stalks. They have strong jaw bones and teeth that help them to easily crunch the bamboo shoots. Giant pandas are so fond of eating bamboos plants that they can consume up to 10 kilos of bamboos a day.

These good looking creatures are known for their distinctive black-and-white colouring; their eyes, ears, legs and shoulders are black, while the rest of their fur is white. A panda’s skin has two different colors; under their black fur, the skin is dark while under the white fur, it is pink! That is something not heard of before!

Birth and Growth

Giant pandas are only about the size of your palm at the time of birth, and they are completely hairless and helpless. The panda mother is extremely loving and caring and looks after the cubs till the time they can venture out on their own. The young ones can climb trees and eat tender bamboo shoots when they are seven months old. Adult Pandas are generally 2–3 feet tall and 5–6 feet long and can weigh up to 150 kilos.

How are Pandas different from other Bears?

The giant panda differs from other bears living in temperate climates in that unlike them, it does not hibernate. Pandas live between 15–20 years in the wild and more than 30 in captivity. Panda is the symbol of peace in China and the scientists are working on coming up with effective conservation measures to save the pandas.

3 Fun Facts about Pandas

1. The Giant Panda’s teeth are almost 7 times bigger than human teeth.
2. Pandas are big gluttons and they cannot go without eating for 5–6 hours.
3. Young Pandas are pretty much like kids, they like to have fun. They are very energetic and clumsy. In zoos, special birthday cakes made of vegetables are offered to the pandas and they love to have them.

Here’s how you can learn to Draw a Panda.

Stubbs The Cat Mayor

A cat selfie! And not just any cat – I’m with Stubbs, the famed cat mayor of Talkeetna, Alaska.

Is there a Cat as a Mayor in Alaska?

On my trip to Alaska, I heard rumors of a town that had a cat for a mayor and I just had to check it out. On coming here, I found out that the cat-mayor lives in a general store, which doubles as his mayoral office. It’s like nothing I’ve heard before and I just had to see him for an autograph.

Stubbs The Cat is easy going and has none of the super-important person air about him. I even joined him for his routine drink of water from a catnip-laden wine glass at a nearby restaurant. A nice fellow overall. We get along fine now that he knows I’m nothing like the dog who mauled him a couple of years ago.

I asked him how he handles being the mayor of a human town, to which he didn’t respond, merely meowed, stretched and looked away. The folks here have mixed opinions on his mayoral status. Some of them told me I’m foolish to believe that a cat can be a mayor. I wanted to hear it from Stubbs himself, so I asked him how he would respond to comments about him being a fake mayor. He responded by looking me in the eye and settling down for a nap. I get the feeling the topic is taboo with him.

Ah well, mayor or not, he’s a nice cat to hang out with. And whether or not the rumors are true, his mayoral status has definitely helped the town’s tourism! He even gets fan mail, and has fans and supporters all over the world. This is one lucky cat!

Can We Erase Bad Memories?

Fear of something is associated with fearful situations. In order to remove or erase a memory one needs to bring in the same triggers in a safe environment. If a memory is manipulated in a safe way, it can erase the bad memory to make way for a new one.

Erasing Bad Memories

If a child has gone for bungee jumping and in that process he has fallen and was hurt, it created a fear of heights in him as he associated heights with the fall. One year later that child can be taken bungee jumping at a different place where there are soft materials on the ground to support. So now when the child falls he has a soft cushion to support and he enjoys jumping. So a fear memory has been tampered with a safer option and as time passes the bad memory of the fall is erased.

Correct Posture at Work

Stop slouching! Sitting up straight is not just the respectful thing to do in the presence of company. It is in fact, something you should do if you want to avoid (or cure) all kinds of back problems. Believe it or not, good posture will also make you a happier and more energetic person!

Here’s what Bad Posture does to your Body

  1. It makes you tired – Poor posture leads to, and often increases fatigue. Your muscles have to spend extra energy holding you up, which means energy is wasted, causing tiredness.
  2. Gives you achy muscles – If you’ve had poor posture for a long time, your muscles are probably stiff, which makes them ache.
  3. Limits motion – Your muscles can become permanently shortened or stretched if you keep slouching.
  4. Makes you look older than you are – If you’ve noticed, old people generally slouch as they’re walking. Mere slouching can make you look old and weary.
  5. Makes you sad – When you’re unhappy or depressed, your shoulders tend to sag, and your neck seems to droop. The converse is also true – if you keep slouching, it’s bound to get your spirits down!

Rules for Good Posture

  1. Head high
  2. Chin up
  3. Shoulders back
  4. Back straight
  5. Chest out
  6. Tummy in

How to Sit right at your Desk?

  1. Ensure your chair is the proper height – meaning, you shouldn’t have to slouch
  2. Use a chair with good back support
  3. Make sure your elbows and wrists have support
  4. Ensure your screen is at arm’s length from you and is around 15 degrees lower than eye level
  5. Ensure your knees are higher than your hips

Also, make sure you get off your back and stretch your muscles for at least 2 minutes every half hour.
Follow all these steps and you might just be able to avoid looking like a cave person!

10 Amazing Recycled Art

10 Artists Doing Amazing Things Using Recycled Material

1. Kyle Bean

Specializes in set design, hand-crafted models and art direction. His ‘What Came First’ piece, made entirely from eggshells, is a solid testament to his brilliant creativity.

2. Lin Evola-Smidt

Melting guns to to create statues of angels is what Lin Evola-Smidt decided to do. When gun violence ravaged Los Angeles in the early ninetiesLin Evola-Smidt decided to help stop the problem by convincing residents to give up their guns. Her most famous artwork is a 13 foot tall angel called “The Renaissance Peace Angel.” After the terrorist attacks of September 11, the sculpture was moved to Ground Zero.

3. Wim Delvoye

Belgian artist Wim Delvoye creates art with used tires while his utterly gorgeous creations manage to maintain the structure of the tires while incorporating elements from nature. The artist uses no mechanical devices during the reworking process making the process a long and tedious one.

4. Tim Noble and Sue Webster

Look the their work ad it will look like a huge heap of trash. Wait till the light shines on it and you will witness magic. Tim Noble’s and Sue Webster’s Shadow Sculptures create incredibly detailed images of profiles of the artists, animals and more in the form of shadows. Quirky or what!

5. Erika Iris Simmons

A.k.a Iri5, Erika Iris Simmons specializes in using non traditional media like cassettes to create absolutely unique and memorable works that feature famous people or team like Kurt Cobain, Beatles and Michael Jackson.

6. Benjamin Rollins Caldwell

Founder of BRC Designs, the company transforms discarded electronic materials, computers, motherboards, and hard drive disks into unique furniture.

7. Jane Perkins

She has created the Mona Lisa and other classic works out art by only using buttons, bits and pieces you’d find lying around the house.

8. Derek Gores

Has achieved national attention for his portrait series. His stunning collages are made from discarded magazines, labels, and other recyclable materials.

9. Sara Bergando

This talent creates flexible ribbon of light from scraps of felt, battery charger from old mobile phones, and a circuit of 50 LED low-power. The lightweight and flexible materials allow for various shape customization and configuration.

10. Yuken Teruya

His brilliant upcycling of the toilet paper roll produces whimsical wall installation she cleverly calls “corner forest”.

Tidsoptimist

What does “Tidsoptimist” mean?

Are you always missing the bus or missing the start of movies, or making people wait? If you answered yes, you might be a tidsoptimist. Pronounced [tid-sop-tuh-mist], Tidsoptimist is a word of Swedish origin that refers to a person who thinks he or she has more time than they actually do, and thus, are habitually late. Although, some people are just lazy. What do you think?

Yoga for Yourself!

The development of yoga can be traced back to over 5,000 years ago, but some researchers think that yoga may be up to 10,000 years old old. Yoga’s long rich history can be divided into four main periods of innovation, practice and development.

With yoga day coming around the corner we should know some health benefits of yoga.

Yoga can help in Increasing your flexibility and building muscle strength. It can also give you the correct posture so that you will never have a hunch back.

It can help in increasing your focus and improving your concentration.

So Don’t forget to try out yoga and improve yourself with it.

Don’t forget to check out our article International Yoga Day.

The Food Pyramid

What is Food Pyramid?

A Food Pyramid is a guide stating the entire healthy food intake that our body requires regularly. The Pyramid is divided into groups or sections and recommends the intake of each group of food. This food Pyramid is extremely important for children as they need to know what food to eat everyday to help them in their growing years.

The food pyramid was first developed in Sweden in the year 1974. It was in the year 1992 that the most widely used food pyramid was introduced by the United States Department of Agriculture (USDA). It was later updated in 2005 and the name was changed to My Pyramid and then again worked upon in 2011 and was changed to MY Plate. Many other countries have developed a food Pyramid, but the one developed by the USDA followed everywhere.

What does the Pyramid Depict?

The food pyramid depicts the different food groups that are essential for the human body. The Pyramid is divided into five food groups, each group suggesting the nutrition required for a human body. Each food group is represented by a colored stripe, thin and bold. The thinner the stripe, the lesser the body needs of that food group. The pyramid also has a human figure climbing up the stairs, suggesting that everyone needs to grow and be active and the food groups help keep the body fit.

The five major food groups represented in the Pyramid is as follows,

  1. Dairy Products: This includes products produced from the milk of cows, goats etc. It includes milk, yogurt, and cheese. They are important because not only do they provide calcium but also protein, Vitamin A and Vitamin D. For adults skimmed products are useful as many dairy products contain fat. 3-4 servings of dairy products are essential.
  2. Fruits: This includes fruits like apple, orange, banana, mango etc. Fruits are a natural source of sugar, fiber and vitamins, especially vitamin C. They help in keeping skin healthy and digestion good. 2-4 servings of fresh fruits are essential.
  3. Vegetables: Vegetables include all fresh green, orange or dark green vegetables, the stem, root or flower of an edible plant is also a vegetable. Peas, cabbage, potato, spinach etc. are all healthy sources of nutrition. Vegetables contain Vitamin C, iron and calcium. They are very healthy and low in fat and calories. 3-5 servings of vegetables are essential.
  4. Meat, beans and nuts: Meat of animals is consumed by humans. Good meat like chicken, turkey, and fish should be eaten. Red meat or bacon have a lot of fat and cholesterol and thus should be avoided. Eggs, dry beans, tofu, soy and nuts can be an alternative source to meat. They are a major source of protein, iron, zinc and Vitamin B12. 2-3 servings of meat are essential.
  5. Grains: This includes all grains, lentils, breads, pasta, cereals and rice. This is a very important food group as it provides energy due to carbohydrates present in them. 6-11 servings of grains are essential.

Meaning of Serving

Serving doesn’t mean that the meal should be eaten at one time. If you eat ½ cup of pasta, that is 1 serving from the 6-11 servings per day. With that if you have a lunch of 2 chapattis, 1 green vegetable, 1 lentil, 1 piece of fish or chicken, salad and 1 cup yogurt; then you will be having servings from each food group. It is recommended to have 2 bowls of fruits everyday, 2 and ½ cup of vegetables, 3 ounces of whole grain products and 2-3 cups of low fat milk every day. This should be supported by regular exercise of at least 30 minutes.

10 Tallest Buildings in the World

List of Tallest Man Made Structures in the World

1. The Burj Khalifa, Dubai, UAE

The tallest building in Dubai, Burj Khalifa, is 2710 feet tall (3 times the Eiffel Tower), and was inspired from a desert flower. It took 22 million hours to build, with 26,000 panels of glass; and uses 250,000 gallons of water everyday to clean and 360,000 100 watt bubs used to light it. It is not just the tallest building in Dubai, but also the highest building in the world! Whenever you are asked what is the tallest building in the world, you will know the answer!

2. Makkah Royal Clock Tower Hotel, Mecca, Saudi Arabia

This modern skyscraper, amidst religious buildings, with clocks on each face stands 1972 feet and has a 75 feet tall gold crescent top.

3. One World Trade Center, New York, USA

The Freedom Tower, as it is popularly dubbed as, is 1776 feet high, is among the tallest buildings in the world! It is made with 40,000 tons of solid steel, and recycled materials; and filled with historic artifacts from the World Trade Centers.

4. Taipei 101, Taipei, Taiwan

Taipei 101, made of environmentally friendly products, at 1669 feet; has the fastest elevator (49 seconds to reach ground from 89th floor) and is built in a super active earthquake zone.

5. Shanghai World Financial Center, Shanghai, China

The Shanghai World Financial Center stands at an enormous height of 1614 feet with the highest observation deck at the time of completion, this building has has made it to the list of the world’s tallest buildings! It has an open sky lighted ceiling show and when you walk on the Sky Walk (made of glass), you feel like you are treading on air.

6. International Commerce Center, Hong Kong, China

International Commerce Center, at 1588 feet, highest swimming pool in Hong Kong, with exceedingly expensive restaurants (no fast food joints) and stores; and has the dazzling Symphony of Lights show.

7. Petronas Twin Towers, Kuala Lampur, Malaysia

These twin towers, standing at 1483 feet, were built by the Japanese and Koreans respectively, and the former’s tower tilts by 25 millimetres. They are octagonal in their cross section to respect Islam. Robert Alain, the French Spiderman, had climbed them twice without any help.

8. Zifeng Tower, Nanjing, China

The Zifeng Tower, 1480 feet tall skyscraper made of steel and concrete, has 89 floors of hotels and offices, which are marvelously separated by the stair like structures. Its top resembles two Chinese dragons dancing. One gets stunning views of the Yangtze River, the Ningzheng Ridge Mountains, and Xuanwu Lake.

9. Willis Tower, Chicago, USA

The Willis Tower is home to one million tourists every year, as it offers breathtaking views from its Sky deck (80 kilometers) of the states Indiana, Wisconsin, Illinois and Michigan. It took only 2000 workers and a time span of three years to build this gigantic 1451 feet high sky scraper with an area of 100 football fields, with 6 robots that clean its 16,100 windows.

10. Kingkey 100, Shenzhen, China.

The Kingkey 100 is a glossy, slender and extremely tall skyscraper that stands at 1449 feet with 100 floors devoted to financial offices and a couple of hotels. The glass structure which blatantly protrudes out amidst the small buildings has an egg shaped pod at the top and illuminates at night.

Facts about Ants

Do you know which species has colonized every part of the earth except for Antarctica? They’re the uninvited guests to almost every party, the ones who make it their job to pick-up after our crumbs? And the ones who sometimes teach us a stinging lesson? That’s right, we’re talking about ants!

Top 10 Fascinating Ant Facts

  1. Ants are social insects

    Ants live in large groups called colonies. A single colony may have up to a million ants. And just like a human society, members of an ant colony too, have specific responsibilities.

  2. Ants are super strong

    Really! Depending on the species, ants can carry up anywhere from 20 to 100 times their body weight over their heads.

  3. Ants breathe through their bodies

    Ants don’t have lungs. They breathe through tiny holes all over their body.

  4. Ants have sophisticated food foraging systems

    Worker ants collect food by following scent trails left by scout ants. These scout ants set out in search of food, as they have a strong sense of direction and the ability to remember visual cues. Once they find food, they return to the nest, leaving behind a path marked by pheromones as a guide for worker ants.

  5. Ants barter services for food

    Ants sometimes herd and nurture other insects in exchange for their sugary sap. They even carry sap sucking insects from one plant to another! Ants also defend certain plants (called myrmecophytes) in exchange for food.

  6. Ants are great security guards

    There are certain ant species, in which soldier ants have modified heads, shaped to match their nest entrance. They block access to their nest by sitting just inside the entrance, with their heads facing out like a cork in a bottle. When worker ants return, they touch the soldier ant’s head to announce that they’re from the same colony, and thus gain access.

  7. Ants fight wars too

    Certain ant species charge into the nests of other ant species and take over. They then enslave the survivors to do their bidding. In such cases, often, the hostile queen kills the target queen, and the worker ants have to rear the young of the conquerors.

  8. Ants invented farming

    50 million years before humans thought to raise their own crops, fungus farming ants were already at it. In fact, studies show that these ants used rather sophisticated horticultural techniques to increase crop yield.

  9. Ants are global conquerors

    Each ant colony has a distinctive chemical profile which allows members to recognize each other and alerts them to the presence of strangers. Studies of these chemical profiles show the existence of massive ant super colonies that stretch over Europe, North America and even japan, making them a global supercolony.

  10. Ants and humans have the same biomass on earth

    The total biomass of all the ants on Earth is roughly equal to the total biomass of all the people on Earth. This is because, scientists estimate that there are around 1.5 million ants for every human on the planet. A single acre of the amazon rainforest is home to around 3.5 million ants!

Ants are fascinating, aren’t they? And a tad frightening. Just a tad.

Northern Lights (Aurora Borealis)

Guess where am I? I am standing on the tip of Norway in front of the ‘Aurora borealis’ also known as northern lights.

What are the Northern Lights, Really?

  • The Aurora is an incredible light show caused by collisions between electrically charged particles released from the sun that enter the earth’s atmosphere and collide with gases such as oxygen and nitrogen.
  • The lights are seen around the magnetic poles of the northern and southern hemispheres. The lights are seen above the magnetic poles of the northern and southern hemispheres. They are known as ‘Aurora borealis’ in the north and ‘Aurora australis’ in the south.
  • Auroral displays appear in many colours although pale green and pink are the most common. Shades of red, yellow, green, blue, and violet have been reported. The lights appear in many forms from patches or scattered clouds of light to streamers, arcs, rippling curtains or shooting rays that light up the sky. Super cool right?

Mythology of the Northern Lights

In Roman myths, Aurora was the goddess of the dawn. The Fox Indians, who lived in Wisconsin, regarded the light as an omen of war and pestilence. To them the lights were the ghosts of their slain enemies who, restless for revenge, tried to rise up again. Kind of scary right?

Related Article :

Read about the Northern Lights : Facts and Causes, visit: https://mocomi.com/the-northern-lights/

Why do Camels have Humps?

The camel hump is a reservoir of fatty tissues. These tissues act as the source of energy when camels have to travel great distances. They convert the fat into water and energy for the camels to function.

How can Camels Survive in the Desert?

When food and water is scarce in the deserts, it is this fat stored in the camel hump that allows it to survive. A healthy and well kept; well fed camel has a huge, upright hump and can weigh up to 35 kilograms! After a long, exhausting journey in the desert a camel’s hump can go down or bend over. This suggests they have used up the amount of stored fat and are in need of food and water to replenish fat content.

Usually camels have one hump but the Bactrian Camel in Asia has two humps because it is meant to carry heavy loads along the cold and dry deserts. These camels are at the risk of extinction!

Acersecomic

What does “Acersecomic” mean?

What if you never cut your hair? How long do you think it would be? Pronounced [Aser-se-ko-mik], Acersecomic refers to a person who has never cut their hair in their life. A girl who never cuts her hair might end up becoming Rapunzel, don’t you think? Can you imagine what you would look like if you stopped cutting your hair for good?

Jojo in The Cactus Trap

Jojo lays the Cactus Trap

A thief had been spotted in the area.
Let me put cactus plants outside our window. It will be difficult for the thief to come in, Mom. said Jojo.
Sure, Jojo. But never open the door for strangers. said his mother.

Jojo lays the cactus trap.
Jojo talks to himself- There! This should help us sleep peacefully.

Jojo was watching his favorite cartoon, when he heard a knock at the door.
Who could it be? I don’t want to miss even a second of the show! he said to himself.

Jojo went up to the door.
He asked Who is it?
Courier, Sir! came a voice from the other side of the door.

Jojo opened the door and in came the thief.
The thief said Don t scream, I don’t want to hurt you.

The neighbors started to bang Jojo’s door.
Neighbors- Open the door, Jojo!

The thief had stolen someones wallet and made a run for Jojo’s house to escape the crowd following him.

The neighbors were banging the door continuously, which made the thief panic.
He said Where is the window?

Jojo pointed his finger in the direction of the window.

The thief ran towards the window and jumped outside. A scream came from where the thief had jumped. Aaaahhhh!

Jojo rushed towards the door and opened it.
Neighbors asked him- Where is the thief, Jojo?

When they went towards the window they saw the thief lying on a bed of cactus, groaning in pain.

Your cactus bed did work, Jojo! said his father when he came back from work.
Jojo was silent and thinking to himself.

His father asked Why are you quiet?
Jojo replied, I put the cactus bed to stop the thief from coming in, not to stop him from going out!

Hearing this, his parents had a hearty laugh.

Create the Mood for Concentration

Ever had problems when concentrating on studies? Well don’t worry about it, Calming background music, placing a fish tank (with fish) in the room where you are going to study and removal of fluorescent lights are some simple ways to make the environment better for concentration. These strategies have been used successfully in overcoming concentration problems schools.

Looking for more Health Tip articles? Go to: Quack A Tip for Kids.

Types of Computer

One of the most amazing inventions mankind has ever made is- Computers. Thanks to computers we can now store and process huge amount of information, while our human brains can rest for a while. Since its inception, computers have taken many physical forms. Earlier computers were the size of one large room and consumed huge amount of electricity. With changes and advancement in technology, computers have now shrunk in size. We now have computers the size of a watch!

Classification of Computers

Basically computers can be classified into two main types- Analog and Digital. Analog computers solve problems by constantly changing data. Computers which tell us the temperature, pressure, voltage are Analog computers. Digital computers compute using binary digits (0, 1). They recognize the ‘On’ and ‘Off’ stage. They are easier to maintain and store data than the Analog ones.

Another type of computer is Hybrid computer which is a combination of Digital and Analog.

5 Types of Computers

1. Mainframe Computers

These computers are used by large organizations for critical applications and huge data processing. These are mostly used by the government and large scale businesses. They are kept in climate controlled rooms and have multiple operating systems.

2. Super Computers

The highly calculative and extremely intensive tasks are handled by super computers. They are capable to process trillions of calculations per second. They have the best memory capacity among all computers. They are used for weather forecasts, quantum physics, space programs etc where trillions of data is calculated and stored.

3. Mini Computers

Mini computers were very popular during 1970-1980. They were used widely by medium and small scale businesses like school offices. They were called the third generation computers and took up the space that a refrigerator would take and were useful for storing small amount of data.

4. Personal Computers

With changes in technology and companies like IBM and Apple making entries, computers became personal and people kept desktops and laptops for their personal use. Such computers are used for personal works, used in offices and schools for learning process.

5. Professional Workstations

With the popularity of personal computers, professional workstations are becoming less necessary. These needed more power than a PC and were lower in cost. They are still used by scientists, graphic artists, architects etc.

Click here to read more about the History of Computers.

The Amazon Rainforest

The word Amazon instantly conjures up a vision of a gigantic forest that is alive and full of exotic animals and trees. Indeed, the amazon rainforest is the largest tropical rainforest on Earth, but that’s just one of the amazing things about it.Let’s find out more about this forest that is more than 6 million square kilometers.

13 Fascinating Facts about the Amazon Rainforest

  1. The Amazon rainforest is roughly the size of 48 continuous US states and covers around 40% of the South American Continent. It stretches across Brazil, Bolivia, Peru, Ecuador, Colombia, Venezuela, Guyana, Suriname and French Guiana!
  2. The Amazon river that flows through the amazon rainforest is the world’s largest river by volume, and the second longest river in the world (the first being the Great Nile)
  3. The Amazon rainforest is estimated to have around 40000 plant species!
  4. The forest floor is completely dark. Less than 1% of the available sunlight makes it to the floor, because of the thick tree canopy above. In fact, even rainwater takes around 10 minutes to reach the ground. Think about that!
  5. A quarter of all our medicines have origins in the rainforest, and only 1% of the rainforest plants have been examined for medicinal purposes.
  6. 10% of the world’s known species live in the Amazon rainforest.
  7. 20% of the bird species of the world live in the Amazon rainforest, that’s around 1300 species of birds!
  8. The amazon rainforest is home to more than 1200 unique species of animals!
  9. The Amazon rainforest is also home to around 2 .5 million different insect species. That’s a whole lot of insects!
  10. Around 80% of the food we eat originally came from rainforests, including popular items like coffee, rice, tomatoes, potatoes and even chocolates!
  11. The Amazon rainforest is also home to around 400-500 indigenous tribes, and some (around 50) of these tribes have never had contact with the outside world.
  12. Some of the residents of the amazon forest are downright deadly, such as piranhas, electric eels, poison dart frogs, jaguars and viciously venomous snakes.
  13. The Amazon forests are sometimes referred to as the lungs of the planet, but considering the number of living creatures in it, most of the oxygen produced the gigantic forest is used up. But the forests are responsible for regulating the temperature on our blue planet.

Even though the Amazon rainforests are essential to our planet’s survival, deforestation is a major threat to it. Thankfully, we are growing more aware and responsible and serious efforts are being undertaken to preserve this huge green canopy on earth.

What is a Wind Vane?

What is a Weather Vane?

A wind vane, also known as the weather vane, is one of the earliest invented meteorological tools used to show the direction of the wind. It has a pointer that freely rotates on the top of a fixed vertical rod and shows which way the wind is blowing. It was designed to swing easily and point to the direction from which the wind was blowing.

Weather Forecast

Information about wind and weather has always been vital for the shipping fleets, armies, fishing and farming since the days of yore.

Earlier, neither were there any advanced techniques or gadgets of weather forecast nor there were any sophisticated means of communication like television, mobiles and computers that could have conveyed the timely information regarding the weather to the masses.

During the early 1900s, people relied on first-hand observation, experience and folk wisdom to predict the weather and wind condition. A common practice was to toss a blade of grass into the air, to find out the direction of the wind.

What is a Wind Vane made up of?

The wind vane consists of two parts, a pointer and a fixed cardinal directional marker, pointing toward the north, south, east and west. The pointer is shaped in such a way that the mass of each end is even but each end has different volumes.

How does a Wind Vane work?

When the wind catches the thick end of the pointer, it swings it around and the arrow points towards the direction in which the wind is blowing. If the arrow points towards the ‘North’ marker on the weather vane, it indicates that the wind is blowing from the north direction to the south direction. A weather vane will not work if the weights are not equal or the volume of each side is the same.

The arrow design is the most popular design for the weather vanes because of its accuracy, simplicity and affordable cost.

Where is it found?

In modern times, weather vanes find their use as ornamentation for many buildings. You can still find expensive and aesthetically designed weather vanes majestically perched on the rooftops of some buildings in India as well as abroad.

3 Interesting Wind Vane Facts

  1. The large weather vane installed at the airports is known as the ‘wind tee’. At the airports, wind direction may also be shown by a cone-shaped bag known as the wind cone, wind sock, wind sleeve.
  2. Some of the popular ornaments on wind vanes include galloping horses, roosters, fish, mermaids, angels, and ships.
  3. Meteorologists use a device known as an aerovane that shows the direction of the wind and can also measure the wind speed.

Why do we say Hello?

Where did the word “Hello” come from?

Alexander Graham Bell is known for the invention of the telephone but it was Thomas Edison who created the greeting ‘hello’ over the phone.

Bell preferred the word ‘ahoy’ but Edison insisted that ‘Hello’ is easier, catchy and referred as a cheerful note to start a conversation.

Why do we say hello on the phone?

Once the telephone was invented a very interesting question arrived, as to how do you start conversing or what is the first thing to say when you pick up the phone? It seems as if you are basically speaking to a stranger because you cannot see the person. So a word and a phrase had to found out quickly and Edison came up with ‘hello’.

Hello is an alteration of hallo or holla, which is generally used to attract someone’s attention. Hullo or hello is the British version and now used worldwide as a common greeting.

Salar de Uyuni

World’s Biggest Salt Flats

Whoa Check it out I’m Standing on water! Salar de Uyuni is the world’s largest salt flat in the world, it has a measurement of 10,582 km squared (4,086 miles squared). Salar de Uyuni is also known as Salar de Tunupa which can be translated from Spanish as ‘salt flat enclosure’. It is located in Potosí in southwest Bolivia, near the crest of the Andes and is at an elevation of 3,656 meters (11,995 ft) above mean sea level. Salar de Uyuni is the world’s biggest salt flat with a measurement of 10,582 km squared (4,086 miles squared),

The Salar was formed as a result of transformations between several prehistoric lakes. It is covered by a few meters of salt crust. The crust serves as a source of salt and covers a pool of brine, which is exceptionally rich in lithium. It contains 50 to 70% of the world’s lithium reserves, which is in the process of being extracted. Whilst some salt is extracted from Salar de Uyuni, it is estimated that the flat contains 10 billion tonnes of salt.

Salar de Uyuni has little wildlife, but has 80 species of visiting and migrating birds.

World’s Largest Mirrors, Bolivia

These salt flats are a large tourist attraction for people to come and take photos because it makes the salt flat also the largest natural mirror.

Sea Level Rise

What is Sea Level Rise?

The rising temperatures are melting the ice and warming up the oceans. Global warming is affecting the sea levels in many ways. Ice is shrinking and melting, adding to the rising water level in the oceans.

Warm water takes up more space than frozen. So as water gets warmer, it expands, little by little, so much so that it results in the rising sea levels by inches. In the past 100 years the average sea level has risen to up to 7 inches. The last ice age was 36,000 years ago when much of the oceans were frozen. But the rise in temperature over the years has resulted in glacier melting, adding to warmer water to the oceans.

6 Causes of Sea Level Rise

  1. The major cause is the melting of glaciers and it is directly related to global temperature changes as Earth’s temperature continues to rise
  2. Eustasy- This is the term used for changes in sea level due to changes in the amount of ocean water
  3. Isostasy- Changes in Earth’s geology. The tectonic plates of the Earth are moving in a slow pace constantly. This changes the structure of the Earth and increases or decreases the height of land above and below sea level.
  4. Thermal expansion- Warm water expands and then water takes up more space. This increases the ocean water levels.
  5. Ice loss from Greenland and West Antarctica- These places had massive ice sheets which are now melting. Melting water from above and sea water from below is seeping below the ice sheets of these areas. This is causing the ice to move more quickly into the oceans.
  6. Adding greenhouse gases to the atmosphere is making the temperature rise rapidly and adding to global warming.

5 Effects of Sea Level Rise

  1. Low lying areas will have more flooding and might even wash out completely
  2. Rising sea levels will harm important coastal ecosystem like the mangroves and coral reefs. Sea water is saline and will cause destructive erosion and contamination of soils
  3. Many living organisms cannot survive in saline water. Thus sea level rise will ruin the birds and plants. Not only that, fishes will lose their habitat and die. As the earth gets warmer, plants and animals that live in cold regions will not be able to survive
  4. When storms hit the land, a higher sea level will cause extremely powerful storms and the water will destroy everything in its way
    Low lying islands will be submerged completely
  5. Scientists predict that warming of earth will continue and is likely to accelerate. By 2100 scientists say that oceans might rise up to 6.5 feet! This is enough to sweep off many small cities along the Unites States.

Kyoiku Mama

“Kyoiku Mama” What does that mean?

Does your mother help you with your homework? Or does she put you in defcon 4 lockdown till you’ve completed all of the homework for the entire summer, and finished assignments for those 10 extra study-helper classes she insists you take? It’s great to have parents help with homework, but if your mom seems to be overly concerned about your academic performance over anything else, she’s a kyoiku mama. Pronounced [ky-oh-ee-kuu-mama], it’s a Japanese term for a mother who relentlessly pushes her children for academic excellence. Not that academic excellence is a bad thing to pursue, but all work and no play makes Jack a dull, joyless creature. And makes fun-time with mom a near impossibility.

Sidenote – A kyoikupapa isn’t anybody’s favorite, either.

What is a Square Number in Math?

Definition of Square

A square is the sum of the number multiplied by itself.

It is as simple as 6 x 6 = 36 or 7 x 7 = 49

A square looks like this 6² = 36

The small ‘²’ implies that the given number be multiplied twice by the same number.

Examples of Square Numbers

  • 1 Squared= 1= 1 × 1 = 1
  • 2 Squared= 2= 2 × 2 = 4
  • 3 Squared= 3= 3 × 3 = 9
  • 4 Squared= 4= 4 × 4 = 16
  • 5 Squared= 5= 5 × 5 = 25
  • 6 Squared= 6= 6 × 6 = 36

Squaring Negative Numbers

Negative numbers can also be made into squares.

(-10 x -10 = 100)

The number turns positive because two negatives make a positive.

Check out here What is Square Root?, https://mocomi.com/square-root/

Soaked Almonds Good for Brain!

Eat soaked almonds, as the benefits will boggle your mind!

Yes, your mother is right when she gives you those soaked almonds in the morning. They are filled with nutrients and make your brain sharper. Almonds are packed with Vitamin E, magnesium, calcium and omega 3 fatty acid which benefits not only in overall health but helps in proper functioning of the nervous system. They also strengthen our immune system making us stronger and not prone to diseases. They boost your energy level and can get through your day with tiring you.

Related Article:

Read here How much of our Brain do we use?

Sloth Facts and Information

How slow do you have to be, if algae grows on your back? No no, that wasn’t a superlative insult. That’s actually how slow the slowest mammal on earth goes. The sloth. Cute, furry mammals, with long talons, that they primarily use to hang on to trees.

What is a Sloth?

Sloths are very old – they diverged from the rest of their family tree, which includes anteaters and armadillos, around 75-80 million years ago, in South America. Their scientific name Bradypus, means “slow feet” in Greek. Sloths are tree-living mammals, and are generally found in the tall trees of rain forests. They spend practically their entire lives in trees, only coming down for bathroom breaks. And their bathroom breaks occur only about once a week! This is handy because their long claws make them unsuitable for walking around on the ground. And, considering their speed, they would be sitting ducks for predators on the ground!

Sloth Characteristics

Sloths are usually as big as a medium-sized dog, and weigh around 15-18 pounds, although, in ancient times, there lived sloths that were as huge as elephants and weighed 3000 pounds!

How long do Sloths live?

They have a short flat head, big eyes, small ears, thick fur, a small or non-existent tail and fairly long legs with long claws. Sloth bodies are only 25 percent muscle, and their fur is just the right place for algae to grow. In fact, many a times, algae grows on sloth fur, which in turn, serves as a camouflage for the sloth. Sloths can live on an average 20 to 30 years in the wild and a bit longer in captivity.

Sloths have long (around 3-4 cm long) claws that they primarily use to hang on to trees and to eat.

7 Interesting Facts About Sloths

  1. Contrary to popular belief, sloths don’t actually sleep all day long. They’re actually just very very still. This works as a defence mechanism for them, as their lack of movement keeps them hidden from their enemies.
  2. They aren’t always super slow. On rare occasions, they‘ve been seen moving as fast as cats! These displays of speed, though rare, make one wonder.
  3. Sloths are never obese. Though lazy as hell, sloth observers say they’ve never seen an obese sloth.
  4. Hibiscus is chocolate to them! Hibiscus to a sloth is what chocolate is to humans, and they relish them, as we do sweet treats.
  5. Sloths have difficulty finding mates. This is of course, primarily due to their speed, or lack thereof. Sometimes they move so slow that it takes them a long time to find a mate.
  6. It can take a sloth up to a month to fully digest a meal! Sloths have a super slow digestive system. And slow as they are, their diet primarily ends up being leaves. Thus, sloths hardly get any energy from their food. This could possibly be one of the major reasons for their slowness.
  7. Sloths are excellent swimmers.

Aren’t sloths just fascinating? They’re the best example of a living a laid back life.

Swine Flu (H1N1) Facts

What is H1N1 Virus?

H1N1 flu virus is a human flu virus which causes respiratory illness in people. It is also known as the swine flu. In this disease, the nose, throat and lungs of a patient are affected. This disease is highly contagious and can spread quickly to many people all over the world in just a short span of time.

Why is it known as Swine Flu?

Swine influenza virus was first isolated by American scientists in the year 1930 from pigs kept in poultry farms. In 2009, a large scale outbreak of this disease took place due to infection caused by a special strain of swine flu virus called the ‘H1N1’ virus and it was first observed in the city of Mexico.

What are the symptoms of H1N1 flu and how is it diagnosed?

The symptoms include heavy nasal secretions, a barking cough, congestion in chest, decreased appetite, and extreme fatigue. To diagnose H1N1 flu, a respiratory specimen is taken from the patient within the first 4 to 5 days of the onset of the symptoms. Antiviral drugs fight the disease by preventing the flu viruses from reproducing inside the body.

How can you protect yourself from getting H1N1?

  • You can protect yourself from getting H1N1 by getting the vaccination done. You must stay away from the people who are sick and have symptoms of flu. Remember to wash your hands and face with soap every time you come from outside.
  • If used correctly, masks are highly effective in preventing the spread of viral infections. Unlike regular facemasks, respirators are effective at preventing the infections.

4 Facts about Swine Flu (H1N1)

  1. The symptoms of swine flu in the pigs are the same as those seen in humans.
  2. The virus of H1N1 is not transmitted by food. A person cannot get infected with H1N1 flu by eating pork.
  3. Today, we do have a vaccine called ‘2009 H1N1’ vaccine to prevent the flu. The U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) has approved the use of one dose of vaccine for persons above ten years of age. Children from 6 months to 9 years of age are advised to get two doses of the vaccine.
  4. People who are allergic to eggs may have some allergic reactions on getting the vaccination done.

Read more about the difference between Virus and Bacteria?

Where does the Sun go When it is Dark?

The Sun is but a fixed Star!

Day or night, the Sun is fixed at its place in the solar system. It is the Earth’s rotation and spinning that makes the Sun disappear at night.

The Sun is always shining and spreading its light on the Earth. But it cannot provide light on the entire Earth at the same time. The Earth is like a ball which is spinning on its axis. The side which faces the Sun receives Sunlight. The Earth keeps spinning and the Sun facing side later experiences evening and then night when that side has moved away from the Sun. Now the other side of the Earth is facing the Sun.

The rotation of the Earth

As the Earth continues to spin, the day side turns away from the Sun, thus giving the impression that the Sun is going down or the Sun is setting. When the night side of the Earth starts to face towards the side of the Sun, it gives the impression of Sun rise.

So, it is not the Sun that is going away anywhere. It is the Earth that you are on that is spinning.

Read here What if the Earth Stopped Spinning?, visit: https://mocomi.com/what-if-the-earth-stopped-spinning/

Lençóis Maranhenses National Park

Can you tell where I am? I’m in Lençóis Maranhenses, Brazil, which means “bedsheets of Maranhao”! And it’s a national park like none I’ve seen before!

Facts about Lencois Maranhenses

The Lençóis Maranhenses national park is a unique white sand dune ecosystem interspersed with ice blue lagoons that change seasonally. At first sight, it might look like a white sand desert, and the blue lagoons may seem like mirages, but this is one desert where if you think you’ve spotted a waterhole to swim in, you have. In fact, swimming in these lagoons is one of the best swimming experiences ever, with no threat of chlorine or lochness monsters.

This beautiful sandscape lies just outside the Amazon basin, and hence receives regular rainfall. That’s what causes the lagoons to form here. The lagoons are formed afresh each year during the rains, and begin to evaporate once the rainy season ends. Needless to say, the region is best visited during the rainy season, although it is bound to beautiful year round. The area was deemed a national park in June, 1981, as a means to protect and preserve it.

According to local folklore, the region was inhabited by Caeté Indians, who woke up one day to find their town covered by sand. Mysterious, isn’t it? As of today, the region is inhabited by 90 men, women and children, who live in two oases, and change their habits seasonally. They live off the land, in palm-roofed huts, cultivating beans and cashews and raising chicken and cattle.

Since the paving of the highway in 2002, tourism has greatly increased, and the park gets around 60000 visitors annually. You’re free to relax and take pictures here, go swimming or just walk or bike around the sandy dunes. A definite must-visit if you’re coming to Brazil.

Titanic Facts and History

How big was the Titanic Ship?

The Titanic was one of the largest passenger ships of that time. It was 882 feet long and 175 feet in height; almost as long as three football fields and as tall as a 17 storey building. The engines of the Titanic were given power by steam pressurized from 800 tons of burning coal, each day. Initially the Titanic had three boiler stacks or chimneys on top to let the smoke and steam out. Later a fourth one was added to make the design look better. Titanic made stops at France and Ireland before moving on towards New York. The Titanic carried 2200 passengers. It could carry 3,457 passengers. But sadly, it did not cater for the saving all of them. Only 700 passengers survived. It was supposed to have 64 lifeboats on board, but they had only 16 since the rest were removed to save space.

How was the Titanic different from other ships?

The Titanic was the first ship to have electric lights and telephone systems in all its rooms. It was luxury on sea. It had four elevators, a gym, two libraries and a heated swimming pool along with a first class lounge, a grand staircase and a first class dining saloon. Since the journey was supposed to be for one long week, the crew catered for food for all its 2200 passengers. It included 86,000 pounds of meat, 40,000 eggs, 36,000 apples, 1000 loaves of bread and gallons of water. Every day the passengers and crew used around 14,000 gallons of drinking water.

The Accident of Titanic

Titanic is well-known for the most famous ship wreck in history. The Titanic started off on its maiden voyage on April 10, 1912. It was supposed to sail from Southampton England to New York City. The Titanic was considered to be the most luxurious of all passenger ships. It was also considered to be unsinkable. But 4 days after it embarked on its voyage, the ship hit an iceberg on 14th April and it sunk at the early morning hours of the next day. Almost 1500 people died in this tragic incident, but it made the Titanic famous and the most sought after ship wreckage in history. The remains of the wreckage were discovered in 1985.

Titanic’s collision with the Iceberg

On 14th April the Titanic collided with an iceberg at 11:40 p.m. Since the previous two days the Captain was receiving warnings of icebergs. The Captain changed the course of the ship but did not reduce its speed. A crewman spotted the iceberg just before the titanic hit it. The Captain reversed the engines turning the ship sharply but it hit the iceberg which carved a 300 foot hole in the ship. As soon as it hit the iceberg, some chunks of ice fell on the forward deck where passengers started playing with them. But shortly afterwards, everyone realized the danger as water started taking on the Titanic. People started boarding the lifeboats. Water flooded in five of the ships compartments. At 2:20 a.m. the Titanic split in half and minutes later it sinks deep down below the sea. The Titanic sank more than 2.5 miles into the ocean floor. The shipwreck was later discovered 12400 feet below the ocean.

5 Interesting facts about the Titanic

  1. In order to save some money, cheap building materials were used by shipbuilders, which led to the sinking of the unsinkable.
  2. The night the Titanic sank, the weather condition of the sea was perfect. It was a calm moonless night, with no wind and no waves.
  3. During the night the Titanic sank, the temperature of the ocean was 28 degrees Fahrenheit or -2 degrees Celsius.
  4. The members of the Titanic’s band continued to play music till the last breath.
  5. The Titanic cost $7.5 million to build.

Ephemeral

“Ephemeral” What does that mean?

Have you ever wondered about the fleeting nature of some of our best moments in life? A word to describe those times would be ephemeral. Pronounced [ih-fem -er-uhl], Ephemeral refers to something that lasts for a very short time, or as a transition between two stages or events, such as a flower that blooms seasonally, or sand castles that don’t last very long, or even childhood, which seems to fade so fast into adulthood that it can only be described as ephemeral. Can you think of something else that is ephemeral?

Kalpana Chawla Biography

Kalpana Chawla was the first woman of Indian origin to venture into space. She took the glory of Indian women to greater heights with her magnificent achievements.

Birth and Early Life

Kalpana Chawla was born on 17th March, 1962, in Karnal, India. Kalpana obtained her bachelor’s degree in aeronautical engineering from Punjab Engineering College in 1982. Thereafter, she went to the United States and obtained her master’s degree in aerospace engineering from the University of Texas in 1984. Four years later, she earned a doctorate degree in aerospace engineering from the University of Colorado. Kalpana also had a Certificated Flight Instructor’s license.

NASA Experience

Owing to her outstanding credentials, knowledge and experience, Kalpana was selected to work for the biggest space exploration agency in the world—NASA. Kalpana Chawla started working at NASA in 1988 and her first opportunity to go to space came in November, 1997. During this mission, she stayed in space for 30 days, 14 hours and 54 minutes, fulfilling her long-nurtured dream to see the cosmos up, close and personal.

Second Expedition and Death

In 2000, Kalpana was once again chosen for her second sojourn in space, serving as a space engineer on STS-107, the 113th flight of NASA’s Space Shuttle Program. Kalpana set off for her second and final journey into space in the space shuttle Columbia on 16th January, 2003. It was a 16-day flight, during which the crew members completed more than 80 experiments in space.

Columbia was supposed to return to Earth on the morning of 1st February, 2003, and land at Kennedy Space Center. People around the world were waiting for the arrival of the shuttle to warmly receive the astronauts from their ambitious mission. But, destiny had something else in store for those brave hearts that day; the space shuttle unexpectedly malfunctioned and exploded over Texas and Louisiana, killing their entire crew of seven brave astronauts on board, including Kalpana Chawla.

No doubt, Kalpana died a hero’s death and though she is no longer amongst us today, she will continue to inspire the young women in our country. Her life was a live example of the famous proverb: ‘Where there is a will, there is a way.’

5 Interesting Facts about Kalpana Chawla

  1. She was the second Indian to fly into space, after the famous cosmonaut Rakesh Sharma who went into space in 1984.
  2. Kalpana’s interest in flying was inspired by India’s first pilot, J.R.D. Tata.
  3. India has named its first weather satellite ‘Kalpana-1’ in Kalpana Chawla’s honour.
  4. Kalpana was married to a freelance flying instructor, Jean Pierre Harrison.
  5. After Kalpana’s death, her husband visited India and scattered her ashes over the Himalayas so that she could finally rest in eternal

Make Mathematics your Friend!

Some enjoy Math while some fear it. In reality Math is an interesting subject as we deal with it in our everyday lives.

Problem solving can be made easy by making use of mathematic in everyday lives. Ask your mum to involve you when she bakes a cake for you. In this manner you can see how she measures the ingredients while you can enjoy learning measurement and fractions! Ask your dad for the monthly bills and you can try and add the expenses of your home each month. If your family is planning a vacation try and find out the distance between your home and the destination and figure out how long it will take for you to reach.

For more interesting Maths lessons, go to : Maths for Kids

The Rain of Fish

Can it Rain Fish?

Fish rain from the sky? Tornadoes are the main culprits.

What causes Animals to Rain from the Sky?

Tornadoes are twirling whirlwinds. When these tornadoes over a water body like lakes or seas; they develop into waterspouts and suck almost everything that is inside the water – it can be fish, eels or frogs.

The fish are sucked up by the tornado’s vortex and then blown around in the clouds. The clouds are capable of carrying them to long distances until the wind speed decreases and then they fall back on the ground. They can fall miles away from the place where they might have been picked up.

Animals that have fallen from Sky!

  • All sorts of creatures fall from the sky about forty times in a year!
  • Not only fish, creatures like snakes, worms, squids, crabs and even alligators have been reported to have fallen from the sky! The most common are fish and frogs.
  • Many a time these creatures are picked up and swept high in the clouds; they become encased or trapped in ice or hail. Encased creatures in ice, when fall from the sky can be very dangerous and can smash through cars and glass.

The Great Pyramid of Giza

The Pyramid of Khufu

The first thing that comes to mind when “Egypt” is mentioned is probably pyramids. The massive ancient triangular structures in the middle of the desert always have and always will be a source of mystique and intrigue in the modern world. And the most famous of these pyramids is The Great Pyramid of Giza, the oldest of the Seven Wonders of the Ancient World.

11 Interesting Facts about the Great Pyramid of Giza

1. The Great Pyramid is the largest of the famous Giza pyramid complex, which houses three pyramids, each built as a tomb for a fourth dynasty Pharaoh. The Great Pyramid was believed to be built as a tomb for Pharaoh Khufu, and is often known as the Pyramid of Khufu or Pyramid of Cheops.
2. It took workers roughly 20 years to build the spectacular masterpiece. In fact, even our current technology falls short when it comes to figuring out exactly how it was built. There are multiple theories regarding the planning and execution of this massive project.
3. From the time it was built, it remained the tallest man-made structure in the world (146.5 meters) for over 3800 years.
4. It incorporates about 2.3 million stone blocks, weighing an average of 2.5 to 15 tons each. Some blocks even weigh around 50 tons.
5. The pyramid is superbly constructed, using high quality materials –

  • a. The cornerstone foundations of the pyramid have ball and socket construction capable of dealing with heat expansion and earthquakes.
  • b. The outer mantle is made up of 144,000 casing stones, that are highly polished, with slanted sides but flat tops, and a very low margin of error.
  • c. The mortar used remains unknown even today – what is most mysterious is that although the chemical composition has been figured out, we have yet to be able to reproduce it successfully.

6. The pyramid was originally covered with highly polished casing stones of limestone, that would have reflected the light of the sun so powerfully that the pyramid would’ve been visible from the moon as a shining star on earth. In fact, the ancient Egyptians called the great pyramid “ikhet”, meaning the “Glorious Light”
7. The Great Pyramid is the most accurately aligned structure in the world as it truly points north with only 3/60th of a degree of error.
8. Another curious thing about the pyramid is the constant temperature of the interiors (68 degrees Fahrenheit).
9. The Great Pyramid is located at the center of the land mass of the earth. Talk about great precision!
10. The Great Pyramid has three burial chambers, and many hidden shafts, presumably to help the royal souls journey into the afterlife.
11. Yet another mystery of the Great Pyramid is the absence of the King whose tomb it is. Records show that King Khufu’s sarcophagus was open and empty when it was found. It might have been plundered, like almost all pyramids have, by tomb-robbers, but there multiple theories (unconfirmed) about the real purpose behind building the pyramid.

Wouldn’t it be awesome to find the truth about pyramids? The Egyptians sure left behind some very interesting mysteries for us to wonder about.

Here are a few amazing facts about the Egyptian Pyramids.

Why does Milk overflow?

Most Mums are always worried about the milk spilling during the boil. Let’s see why this happens!

Why does Milk overflow when boiled but Water doesn’t?

Before we start, we must be aware of that fact that milk is not a normal liquid like water. Milk is far more complex as it is made-up of 87 percent water, 4 percent proteins and 5 percent lactose. When we boil milk, fat, sugar, proteins and minerals get separated.

As these are lighter than milk, they collect on the surface to form the cream.

Now, as the milk continues to get heated, out of the 87 percent of water, some of it gets converted into vapour. These bubbles of vapour start to rise above but are stopped and not allowed to escape by the cream which has been formed on the surface.

But this does not stop the vapour from forming. So as more water evaporates, more vapour and pressure builds up in the boiling milk.

Finally, the milk pushes the creamy layer out so that the air can escape. This then causes the milk to spill out of the vessel.

For more such science experiments and articles, visit https://mocomi.com/learn/science/

La Sagrada Familia

I’m at a Church that has been in construction since 1882! I’m at Barcelona and behind me is La Sagrada Familia, or the Bascilica of Sagrada, a majestic structure that still does not have a completion date.

Where is La Sagrada Familia located in Barcelona?

The Basílica i Temple Expiatori de la Sagrada Família (long name, right!), is a large roman catholic church in Barcelona, designed by the Spanish architect Antoni Gaudi.

Is the Sagrada Familia finished?

The construction of this huge church commenced in 1882. Gaudi got involved in the construction in 1883, and remained involved in the process into his final years, until his death in 1926. And even then, only a quarter of the project was completed.

The Bascilica is a striking sight to behold, and being incomplete does nothing to dispel its majestic force. In fact, it is already a UNESCO world heritage site! This being the most well-known church in Barcelona, I signed up for a tour at once. Interestingly, there’s also an option of an audio guide, explaining the facades and interior of the basilica for those who wish to wander and explore the Bascilica at their own pace. But I love talking to guides and asking my questions, so I opted to have the guide present with me during my visit. My guide tells me that the reason the bascilica is taking so long to be built is because it was mainly funded by private donations, and the construction was interrupted by the Spanish Civil war, and only resumed construction in the 1950s.

The bascilica is huge, and is based on the traditions of Gothic and Byzantine Cathedrals. This is what gives the bascilica its cathedral like appearance. The difference between the Sagrada Familia and a cathedral, I’m told, is that a cathedral has a seat for the Bishop. The church has a total of 18 towers, each of them with a distinct significance to Christian religion. My guide tells me that the completed church will serve to express the teachings and basis of the Christian religion even to those who know nothing about it. Isn’t that marvelous? As of today, the tower of Jesus is under construction, I’m told, and there will also be the towers of Evangelists and the tower of the Virgin Mary above the apse.

I was curious to learn whether there is in fact, any anticipated completion date, and it turns out that there is one. The completion date is estimated to be somewhere in 2026, a hundred years after Gaudi’s death. Antoni Gaudi devoted most of his adult life to the construction of this bascilica, and this would serve as a testament to his efforts. In any case, I’ve joined the list of people who eagerly await the completion of this masterpiece.

Why do we Blush?

What does Blushing mean?

Blushing is an involuntary action, which means you have no control over it. When you are in a situation where you are embarrassed, your body immediately releases adrenaline. This adrenaline hormone is responsible in creating the fight or flight response in your body. It speeds up your breathing, causes your pupils to grow bigger and increases your heart rate. Simply put, it prepares your body to be prepared to run from danger.

Adrenaline makes your blood vessels dilate to improve the blood flow and ensure that oxygen is delivered to organs. A chemical transmitter called adenylyl cyclase signals the veins in your face to dilate. When they do, more blood flows into your cheek veins, thus causing the red face and a warm cheek- in short, you blush!

Classification of Animals

Some of us eat plant and dairy products, while others consume a meat based diet along with plant and dairy products. Based on the type of food we eat, we can be categorized into vegetarians or non vegetarians. Just like us, animals also have their own preferences for food and we can group them into three broad categories: herbivores, carnivores, and omnivores, based on their eating habits.

What is Herbivores?

Herbivorous animals are the animals that mostly feed on plants, fruits, leaves, seeds, grass and other natural food sources. From tiny insects like bees to large, lumbering elephants—all come under the vast category of herbivorous animals! Other examples of herbivorous animals include cows, horses, sheep, rabbits, goats, deer, parrots, snails, etc. Most of the herbivorous animals have blunt teeth and wide molars.

3 Interesting Facts about Herbivorous Animals

1. Dinosaurs like Stegosaurus and Apatosaurus were herbivores.
2. Herbivores need a lot of energy to survive and that is why they spend most of their time eating.
3. Herbivorous animals have specialized digestive system to digest raw plants.

What is Carnivores?

Carnivorous animals are the animals that eat the flesh of other animals. Lions, tigers, foxes, wolves, vultures, etc. come under this category. No, do not call them ‘bad’ yet, just because they kill and eat other animals! These animals are extremely important to any ecosystem because they keep the population of other species in control.
The bigger the carnivore, the more it has to eat! Carnivores are also known as predators and the animals that they hunt are called prey. Carnivores usually have long and sharp teeth that help them nab the prey and rip apart its flesh.

3 Interesting Facts about Carnivorous Animals

1. The polar bear is the largest carnivore that is also known to hunt even human beings.
2. Weasel is the smallest living carnivore.
3. Some plants like pitcher plant and sundew are carnivorous in nature and feast on insects.

What is Omnivores?

Omnivorous animals are the animals that can eat both—meat of other animals and plants and plant products—whatever is available. Some examples are bears, pigs, rats, chicken, piranha fish and crows. Omnivores have specialized teeth that make it possible for them to eat both plants and animals.

3 Interesting Facts about Omnivorous Animals

1. Omnivores cannot eat all types of plants; they are unable to digest the plants that do not produce grains and fruits.
2. Since omnivores eat both plants and flesh of other animals, they have the ability to survive in a wide variety of environments.
3. Omnivores, along with carnivores, are placed at the third and the highest level of the food chain.

You may also like Rainforest Animals List A-Z

Prie-dieu

“Prie-dieu” What does that mean?

Prie-dieu comes from the French word. Prie-dieu means a small kneeling bench designed for use by a person at prayer but may also be found in churches. It is a small, ornamental wooden desk furnished with a thin, sloping shelf for books or hands, and a kneeler. Sometimes, instead of the sloping shelf, a padded arm rest will be provided. This type is useful for devotions, such as the Rosary which do not require a book, or for private, non-liturgical prayer.

How do Kidneys Work?

What is Kidney?

There are many organs in the human body that are essential for our survival- the brain, lungs and heart. But did you know that even kidneys are an important part of the human body that we cannot do without?

A human body has two kidneys and you need at least one kidney for your body to function properly. Kidneys are small, about 13 centimetres long; that is about the size of your fist- yes, that small but has an important job to do. They are bean shaped and are located just below the rib cage, one on each side.

What your Kidneys do?

A kidney’s job is to take all the waste material out from your blood and transform that into urine and make you pee. Every day the two kidneys filter all the waste and extra fluids. Every day the kidneys filter almost 115 litres of blood to make just about 1 litre of urine. The kidneys are connected to the bladder and the urinary tract. Thus the urine is then collected in the bladder. Once the bladder fills up, the muscles of the bladder become tense and send a signal to the brain which tells you that you need to rush to the toilet.

Why are Kidneys Important?

  1. They clean blood
  2. Remove chemicals that your body doesn’t need
  3. They keep the water level in the body perfectly balanced: So if you drink excess water, the kidneys remove that in the form of urine. And if you drink less water, the kidneys pass less urine.
  4. They make hormones that help regulate blood pressure, make red blood cells and keep bones strong

Parts and Functions of a Kidney

Each kidney is made up of millions of filtering units called nephrons which are responsible to filter small amounts of blood. These nephrons have a filter called the glomerulus. They also have a tube called a tubule. The glomerulus allows and filters blood with wastes to pass through it, preventing any proteins to pass. This filtered fluid then passes through the tubule which removes more wastes and sends the needed minerals back to the bloodstream. The remaining waste is urine and is sent to the bladder.

Picking the Right Sunscreen!

Summer vacations are just around the corner and you must be excited and looking forward for that long awaited family vacation!

In this excitement do not forget to take extra care of your skin and protect it from the harsh rays of the sun. Yes, even children need to put sunscreen. Choose a sunscreen that is free from paraben and contain zinc oxide and has an SPF of 30. Apply sunscreen 15 minutes before you go out and reapply every 2 hours. Prickly heat rashes in summer? Have lots of fruits that are rich in Vitamin D and apply calamine lotion. Enjoy your vacations!

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CHECK OUT HERE Why do we get Tanned?

What is Photosynthesis?

All organisms need energy to survive, sustain, and grow. That much we already know. We get this energy by consuming food. Thus, food is the primary source of energy for us. When we (humans) are hungry, we make food, using vegetables, meat, dairy products and so on. When animals are hungry, they eat plants (if they’re herbivores) or other animals (if they’re carnivores). So what’s food for plants? They must need some form of energy to survive, sustain and grow, right?

How Plants make Food and Energy?

Well, the answer is photosynthesis. The word can be split into two terms “photos”, meaning “light”, and “synthesis”, meaning “putting together”. So light is used to create something (energy for plants). Think of it as the procedure plants follow to make their food. In a nutshell, photosynthesis is a process in which the energy from the sun is used to produce glucose from carbon dioxide and water. This glucose is then used up as energy by the plant, and in doing so, oxygen is released as a byproduct.

What is the Process of Photosynthesis?

Collection of Ingredients –

  1. Plants absorb energy from the sun, with the help of a pigment called “chlorophyll”, which is present in their leaves. This is also the pigment that gives leaves its green color.
  2. Plants absorb water and other minerals from the soil with the help of their roots.
  3. Plants also absorb CO2 from the air, with the help of “stomata”, which are pores in the leaves.
  4. All these ingredients are taken to the leaves, the “cooking central”, i.e. the leaves.

The Chemical Reaction –

Once all the necessary ingredients are collected, a chemical reaction takes place in the leaves of the plant.

  1. The energy from the sun is used to split water molecules into Hydrogen and oxygen molecules
  2. The hydrogen and carbon di oxide combine to form glucose, which acts as food for plants.
  3. Oxygen is released as a byproduct, for other organisms to use.

Equation of Photosynthesis

Thus, photosynthesis can be represented as –
Carbon dioxide + water light energy glucose + oxygen
If you wanted a more chemical representation of photosynthesis, this is the equation for it–
6CO2 + 6H20 light energy C6H12O6 + 6O2

That’s the short and sweet version of how plants cook. However, the entire process of photosynthesis doesn’t require light. Only certain stages require the presence of sunlight. Thus, photosynthesis takes place in two broad stages – The light dependent reaction and the light independent reaction. Let’s take a quick look at what these are:

1. The Light Dependent Reaction

You guessed it, this is the stage where the sun’s energy is trapped by the chlorophyll pigment. What happens next is that this energy is converted into a more usable form of energy storage molecule called ATP, and an electron donor/carrier molecule called NADPH. These molecules are needed for the next stage, i.e. the light independent stage.

2. The Light Independent Reaction

The ATP and NADPH molecules created in the previous stage are used up here to produce glucose energy for plants. Specifically, ATP provides energy for the reaction, while NADPH covers the loss of electrons in the glucose forming process.

Did you know? It’s not just plants that use photosynthesis to make their own food. Certain bacteria and algae also use photosynthesis to make food.

Dr. B.R. Ambedkar Biography

Bhimrao Ramji Ambedkar, also known as Babasaheb Ambedkar is famous as the father of the Indian Constitution. He was a great activist and a social reformer who fought for the rights of Dalits and the upliftment of the socially backward class in the Indian society.

Early life and Education

B.R. Ambedkar was born on 14th April 1891 in Mhow, a small place in Western Madhya Pradesh. He belonged to the ‘untouchable’ Mahar caste. Since his grandfather and father were part of the British army, all Army personnel’s family were required to study and thus Ambedkar had the privilege to study which would otherwise had been denied to low caste people.

Fight against Untouchability

Despite the opportunity given to all students to study, Bhimrao faced a lot of discrimination in school. They had to sit on the floor to study, teachers would not touch their notebooks, they were not allowed to drink water from the public reservoir and it soon etched into his mind that they will remain the ‘untouch’.

He was very fond of reading and read everything he could lay his hands on. Bhimrao was always mocked at by teachers but he went on to get higher education and graduated in Arts. He even won a scholarship for higher studies and was sent to America. He completed his doctorate and went to London to study economics and politics. His scholarship was terminated and he had to return to Baroda. Here he worked as the Defence secretary for the state but he was often ridiculed for being of the ‘Mahar’ caste. Thus he left his job and became a teacher at Sydenham College in Mumbai. He also started a weekly journal, ‘Mooknayak’, with the help of the Maharaja of Kohlapur. The journal criticised the orthodox Hindu beliefs and was a voice against discrimination.

Political Career

He earned enough money to complete his studies in London and then was appointed as barrister in the British bar. Determined to work for eradication of discrimination in India, he returned. He started the ‘Bahishkrit Hitkarini Sabha’ which provided education and socio-economic improvement to the backward classes. He followed the footsteps of Gandhi to fight for water source and right to enter temples for the untouchables. He also published a book ‘Annihilation of caste’ in which he strongly criticised the discriminative Indian society. He also published ‘Who were the shudras?’ where he explained the formation of untouchables.

The Father of Indian Constitution

He earned the chair as free India’s first law minister and the chairman of the drafting committee of the Indian Constitution. He drafted the Indian constitution in such a way as to provide Indian citizens with freedom of religion, abolish untouchability, provide rights to women and bridge the gap between various Indian classes.

Conversion to Buddhism and Death

Babasaheb converted himself to Budhism after being inspired by their preaching. He even wrote a book ‘The Buddha and his Dhamma’. He died on December 6, 1956. His birthday is celebrated as a public holiday known as Ambedkar jayanti.

Why do we have Eyebrows?

What are Eyebrows for?

The eyebrows are arch shape as this shape helps divert the rain or sweat around the sides of our faces, thus preventing the sweat or rain to drop inside our eyes. So without eyebrows this would not be possible as sweat or rain would directly enter our eyes and hamper our vision. The salt in the sweat, if enters the eye would irritate and make the eyes sting.

What if we didn’t have Eyebrows?

Scientists say that if we did not have eyebrows something else would have evolved in its place; like thicker eyelashes, to help man keep moisture away from the eyes. Thus eyebrows play a very important part in our body.

Eyebrow Body Language

Eyebrows are also used for non-verbal communication. Eyebrows exaggerate expression. Moving your eyebrow up or down can mean a lot many things. A frown may mean you are seriously pondering or confused or angry. A simple upward movement of the brows may mean surprise or joy. Notice a Kathakali dancer and how they move their eyebrows to express emotions.

Ajanta Caves Information

Ajanta Caves in Aurangabad, Maharashtra

I’m in the caves that tell the story of Buddha! Located in the state of Maharashtra, the Ajanta caves are an Indian national heritage site that are recognized as one of the world’s greatest historical monument by UNESCO. There are 29 caves in Ajanta, with most of them being monasteries!

History of the Ajanta Caves

Discovered in AD 1819, the caves in Ajanta were built sometime around the 2nd Century, out of a horseshoe-shaped cliff along the Waghora River.

Interesting Facts about the Ajanta Caves

Whoa! That’s ancient! My guide has told me such interesting facts about these caves! According to him, the caves are numbered in order from east to west. He also tells me that the caves 9, 10, 19, 26 and 29 were what are called “chaitya-grihas”, meaning prayer halls. The rest of the caves were monasteries, apparently, but they’re abandoned and out of use now.

These caves are full of beautiful art, in the form of sculptures and paintings. All the paintings depict the life and times of the great Gautama Buddha, the monk prince who undertook a journey to spread the wisdom of Buddhism in the world. They also speak of the former lives of the Buddha, the various Bodhisattva’s and tales from the Jataka’s. The paintings were made using a technique called “tempera”, my well-informed guide tells me. Although the story of Buddha has many compositions, from Roman and Greek to Chinese, a majority of the story told here is from a phase that is purely Indian, and cannot be found anywhere else.

Every cave here has a story to tell, but some of the caves are simply must-see. A good guide will tell you the significance of each of these caves, and if he’s smart like my guide, he’ll take you in the reverse order, so you can also avoid the throng of visitors! Cave 1 is a so awesome that you simply cannot afford to miss it. It is said that every inch of the cave was painted, and although most of it has worn out over the years, whatever little is left gives us good idea of the grandeur of it’s past.

If you enjoy visiting historical sites then the beautiful Ajanta caves are the place for you!

Cheetah Facts and Information

The word “cheetah” comes from the Sanskrit word “citrakayah” meaning spotted. The cheetah is the world’s fastest mammal on land.

Characteristics of a Cheetah

Length

A Cheetah purrs and does not say grr. A cheetah can weigh anywhere from thirty nine to sixty kilograms. They measure from 44 to 53 inches in length. But its tail is about 33 inches long. The tail acts like a boat’s rudder, controlling and guiding their direction, when running. They have over 3000 rounded black spots on their tan colored body. They have a very flexible spine with a small head. They have tear stains which is a black line extending from the eyes to the nose. They live for over 10 years.

Speed

The cheetah is the world’s fastest mammal on land. The cheetah can increase his speed from 0 to 100 km/hr in just a few seconds. They can cover 25 kilometers with one step. They have non retractable claws which aids in running. When they run, they have one foot on the ground, at one time. They have a strong heart combined with huge flaring nostrils, which pumps more oxygen into the lungs.

But this energy to sprint fast stays for half a minute only. They stealthily approach the prey, and only chase after it, when they are very close to it, and know they can catch it immediately. Their spotted body easily hides in the tall grasses of the plains. They use their front paws to catch and strangle the prey, before quickly dragging it away to a hiding spot; before other large animals see it. Then they wait for thirty minutes to rest before devouring the animal. They eat zebras, antelopes and hares.

When do they hunt?

Cheetahs hunt during the day unlike the lion and the tiger. They have very strong eyesight and can spot a prey from five kilometers away. But they have very poor night vision. They do not have sharp claws to fight, so they give up their prey in a battle with a more ferocious animal.

Where are they found?

They are found mostly in the greenery of Africa and in some parts of Iran. From 100,000 cheetahs in the 1900s, the cheetah is now becoming an extinct animal with a mere population of 10,000.

7 Interesting Facts about Cheetah

  1. They drink after every four days.
  2. There are larger cats than a cheetah. They cannot climb trees like other cats.
  3. Cheetahs chirp like birds when communicating with each other.
  4. Male cheetahs stay with other males. They only mix with females during mating. The male cheetahs also leave their mark by scratching a tree.
  5. Female cheetahs give birth to three cubs at a time. The baby cubs have a grayish yellow coat, which protects them from sun and rain; and helps in hiding. They start hunting around 6 weeks. Their mother leaves them at 2 years and then they stay together to fend for themselves.
  6. In Ancient Egypt, Cheetahs were kept as pets and helped in hunting. They have been in existence since 3000 BC, when the earliest civilization had been discovered. Akbar, the great Mughal Emperor, had trained 1000 cheetahs to hunt. Fossils show cheetahs lived a few million years ago. Tutankhamen’s tomb contained a cheetah’s remains in Egypt.
  7. They are found mostly in the greenery of Africa and in some parts of Iran. From 100,000 cheetahs in the 1900s, the cheetah is now becoming an extinct animal with a mere population of 10,000.

Nemophilist

“Nemophilist” What does that mean?

If your idea of a great day has something to do with forests, then you’re a Nemophilist! Pronounced [ne-moph-i-list], nemophilists are known to haunt forests (not in a spooky way!). They just love the forest and forest scenery, and their favorite hangout place is likely to be in a tranquil place under the cover of trees. Do you think you can count yourself among nemophilists?

Be Safe on the unknown, Virtual World

How safe are you on the internet? Yes, the internet is a place for immense knowledge and fun but some people can misuse it, sometimes at your cost.

Most of you must be using social networking sites. It is always advisable to have strict privacy settings and only add people you know in your friend list. Never give out personal information like your phone number, address, details about your where abouts on social networking sites. Never share your passwords with anyone, not even with your best friend. Keep these few pointers in mind and be safe on the unknown, virtual world.

Note: Don’t forget to check out about the Hacking and Viruses : Facts

Hacking and Viruses : Facts

What is a Computer Hacker?

The term ‘hacker’ refers to a skilled programmer, who is competent in computer operating systems.

These people could basically solve any kind of problem arising in any computer system. These hackers (a few of them), also became experts in accessing computers that were protected by passwords and they were then called crackers. This was way back in the 1990s. Today anyone who performs any kind of computer sabotage is called a ‘computer hacker’.

What is Computer Hacking?

These crackers use small programs, that exploit the weakness in a computers operating system, transforming them into zombies.

Computer hacking involves violation on the privacy of others by invading their network security and causing damage to the software.

Computer hacking is a practice in which the computer hardware and software are altered, causing damage to important data or leading to stealing of secret information.

Hackers usually target computers connected to the internet. The hacker breaks into the computer security and invades user privacy.

Personal information like bank account details, credit card numbers, social security numbers etc. are exposed.

Hacking of computers leads to an identity theft, where a person could pretend to be another, by using his identity and gaining access to an individual’s personal details. He could even be misusing the other persons account for illegal activities.

When a computer is hacked, the user may receive a program which calls for activation. These programs could appear as picture files, MPEG or some other format that the user may recognize. But when the user runs the programs, there may be nothing significant happening. This should not be taken lightly by the user.

Meanwhile, the activated program attaches itself to an element of the user’s operating system, so that every time the user turns on his computer, the program becomes active.

If the user runs the program, it enables the hacker access the user’s system and enable him to do whatever he likes.

Today there are a large number of hackers, who with their wicked ways are able to affect any computer, whether he be a simple house-user, student, e-mailer, net user etc.

We see at least more than a hundred thousand known viruses affecting our systems.

What is Spam?

Very often, you must have opened your mails and found a lot of your emails as junk mails. This comes from networked zombie computers. It does not come from one centralised source making it difficult to track down the source.

These spam mails deliver computer virus or Trojan programs to many computers at a time. It also ends up sending messages and getting personal information about the system owner.

It is difficult to assess if the sender is a single user sending out spam or the computer is being controlled remotely.

What is a Virus?

  • You often hear computer users use the word “virus”. So, what is this virus?
  • This term was used to describe a machine code command, that when inserted into a computer’s memory can on execution, copy itself into other files and programs on the computer.
  • If the hacker desires he can pose serious problems in this manner.
  • A virus actually exploits a user, as it is in simple terms a piece of software or a command sequence that causes an unintended behavior in the computers operating system or application.
  • To protect your system, you must install and use a software that can be trusted and ensure that you always delete all unknown mails that you receive.
  • If there is any doubt about any software function, you must be very careful and not install the same. Always make sure you delete the emails that you receive from unknown senders or random people, don’t be curious to open these emails you receive as you could be targeting your system to a virus. You must remember that adult websites are a hacker’s paradise, so avoid them.
  • Another way of protecting your system is to not open advertisements that often pop-up while you use the internet. An easy way for a virus to get transferred from one computer to another is by sharing USB hard disks and CDs.

Types of Viruses

1. Trojan Horse

  • Trojan horse, in computers is a program, wherein harmful codes are contained which control data and ruin file allocation tables on the hard disk. It is considered a virus if redistributed.

2. Logic Bomb or Time Bomb

  • In this there is an erasure of data from hard disks or there is a corruption of key programs. It contains a virus that begins to destroy the system once the set time lapses hence it is also called a time bomb.

How to protect your Computer from Viruses and Trojans?

  • We can protect our computers by installing an anti-virus software.
  • These anti-virus software programs search for evidence by checking the behaviour that is typical of these virus, worms, bombs etc.
  • When the software finds a problem, it quarantines the infected files. These anti-virus software programs are not very expensive. There are some that can be downloaded or are available free of charge (for a specific trial period).
  • An anti-virus program needs frequent updating to avoid any threat to your systems. You can even set your systems to update the anti-virus program automatically. The same is true for your Windows Operating System.

How do we know that our computer has been hacked?

  1. It is actually very difficult to know if your computer has been hacked because nothing changes or shows on your system to this effect.
    You could look out for the following :
  2. Sometimes, you may find some new programs or files that are in your computer. If you are the sole user of your computer, this could be an indication that the computer has been hacked.
  3. To know if the hacker has invaded your system, you could look out for Backdoor and Trojans which are the most common programs that get installed after a computer has been hacked. These are programs that enable a hacker to get access to your system.
  4. Change in Password- A change in password can be done by the hacker, who can change the password of your online account. In this case, you must contact the service provider if you are unable to check your e-mail account.
  5. Another possibility of a hack is, if your password to log in to your computer system has changed. This is something that cannot happen on its own and hence you must check and change your systems password.
  6. A hacked computer shows a slower internet connectivity. This is because when the hacker takes charge of your computer, he remotely connects to your computer and a remotely connected computer signifies that it has been hacked.
  7. If you notice the computer doing things as if someone else is in control, it could be an indication that the computer has been hacked.

Hacking is a serious threat to society and is considered as a criminal offense.

What is a Stingray?

Are Stingrays Fish?

With their wide, flat bodies, Stingrays don’t have the classic fish look, but they are. They are flat, with broad fins that run the length of their body, giving them their distinct roundish shape. They also have a tail which is primarily used as a defense measure against predators.

Stingrays can live up to 25 years, and can grow up to 14 ft long. They are carnivorous and their diet includes clams, oysters, shrimps and crabs.

9 Interesting Facts about Stingrays

  1. They are related to sharks, and just like sharks, they are boneless creatures, with their bodies being supported by cartilage.
  2. There are more than 60 species of stingrays in the world!
  3. They prefer living in shallow waters near the shore, as a safety measure against predators of the deep sea, such as sharks, seals and larger fish.
  4. Depending on their species, their tail has spines or a venom, and is used as a defense mechanism. It is also used as a maneuvering mechanism at times.
  5. They don’t use their eyes to find their pray, they sense electrical charges emitted by the prey instead.
  6. Stingrays may live a solitary life, or may live in groups.
  7. Their body coloration reflects the ocean floor, serving as a camouflage from their predators.
  8. They swim in interesting patterns – Some of them swim by creating wave like patterns with their bodies, while others flap their fins like wings in order to swim.
  9. Stingray venom is fatal to humans, and is even a part of Greek mythology!

Aren’t stingrays fascinating?
Click here to learn how stingrays differ from manta rays.

Norway’s Trolltunga Hike

I’m on another hike! And what you see behind me is the view from Trolltunga! One of the most scenic cliffs in Norway. I’ve surprised myself again, by undertaking this risky hike up a cliff that is 1100 metres above sea level.

How high is Trolltunga?

Trolltunga is a cliff that juts out horizontally 700 m above the river Ringedalsvatnet in the Odda municipality in Hordaland County, Norway. And the view from up here is simple breathtaking! This is a long hard hike that can only be undertaken from around mid-June to mid-September, because that is the time when enough snow melts. The weather here is humid as this is a coastal area, but they say it sometimes snows in summer, if the winter was hard. My fellow hikers tell me that the cliff was formed nearly 10000 years ago, in the ice age! How awesome is that?!

Troll Tongue : Spectacular Scenic cliffs in Norway

To hike here, you have to be in really good shape and you also have to be a good hiker (like I am), because this is one risky hike! No safety railings have been constructed here so as to not harm the natural beauty here, although there are some metal hooks and footholds to help climb down to the actual rock. But the level of difficulty hasn’t kept away determined hikers. In fact, tourist activity has increased greatly in recent years, from around 500 per year in 2009, to more than 40000 per year today!

This also means lot of work for the search and rescue teams around here. Every year, the search and rescue operations teams are kept busy owing to the hikers who get into serious trouble around here. And with no mobile coverage, their jobs don’t get any easier. As the guides here will tell you, all nature based activities are to be undertaken at your own risk, and there are many risks out here. If you plan to stay overnight, you have to carry your own tent and supplies. And don’t forget to bring a compass!

There are, of course, guided tours that offer relatively safe biking and hiking activities. Best to opt for those if you’re not 100% confident. If you are however, then this is a hike that will most certainly get your adrenaline pumping. And if the hike isn’t rewarding enough, the view most certainly is!

Why do our best ideas come in the Shower?

No wonder great ideas happen in the Shower

Psychology terms the state in the shower as the ‘default mode’. It is the place where you are alone, your mind is free and only your body is in motion. Your mind enjoys a relaxed experience and thus a great idea about something you have been pondering over strikes you. When you are relaxed, your brain releases a happy-go-lucky neurotransmitter- dopamine. This boosts your creative juices that ripple your brain. This also happens when you are deeply meditating. So showering is no less than meditation.

In the shower a person becomes less aware of the environment and more aware of his/her internal thoughts. A shower suggests the beginning of a new day. It is a familiar and comfortable environment for your mind and body and you do not get bored.

4 Reasons why the best ideas come in the Shower

  1. You are alone in your comfortable environment.
  2. There are hardly any distractions.
  3. Showering wakes you up and makes you alert.
  4. The rush of water creates a white noise that makes you concentrate on your thoughts easily.

Hippopotomonstrosesquippedaliophobia

What does “Hippopotomonstrosesquippedaliophobia” mean?

Do you like big long words that can take forever to spell? If you do, then you don’t have Hippopotomonstrosesquippedaliophobia, a nightmare of a word for those who have a fear of long words. Incidentally, Hippopotomonstrosesquippedaliophobia, pronounced [hip-pa-pa-tah-mon-st-roz-es-kwip-pi-dah-li-a -foh-bee-aa] means a fear of long words! Can you imagine the predicament of someone who is trying to find a word to describe their fear of long words?

Silverfish Bug Facts

What is Silverfish?

Silverfish are small wingless insects that are found in almost every corner of the world. They have a fish-like appearance and their bodies are covered with shiny silver scales, because of which they are known as ‘silverfish’.

Length and Vision

Silverfish are 13–20 mm long and have a pair of long antennae at the front and three tail-like structures at the rear. They also have two miniscule eyes that are too small for us to see with the naked eyes. Some species, however, are completely blind.

Location and Eating Habits

They love to dwell in damp and dark areas in your houses. You can find them living in your basements, laundry rooms or under the kitchen sinks. They love to eat anything that has starch in it like books, articles made of paper, flour, oatmeal and other kitchen wastes.

Life Cycle of a Silverfish

Unlike most of the insects that go through four stages of life, the silverfish goes through only three stages of life:

  1. Egg – Silverfish insects lay eggs all year round. The eggs take twenty to forty days to hatch.
  2. Nymph – The nymph is the smaller version of the adult insects.
  3. Adult – The silverfish insects reach maturity in just three to four months. These insects are white initially and turn silver only after reaching adulthood.

Are Silverfish harmful?

Silverfish bugs can cause a lot of damage to the household goods, especially books. To keep the silverfish insects at bay, you must vacuum your house thoroughly to eradicate the eggs and nymphs right away. All the holes or little opening near pipes and wires in the house should be carefully blocked. You must always keep your books and goods made of paper in a dry area in your home. Flour, sugar and other starchy food items should be stored in airtight containers. But, hold on! If you think it is easy to get rid of the silverfish in your house, think again! These annoying little insects can survive up to one year without food! If the infestation increases, you may even have to call pest control professionals to get rid of the silverfish for you. They can kill the silverfish once and for all with certain chemicals especially designed to kill these pesky insects.

5 Interesting Facts about Silverfish

  1. The average life span of silverfish bugs is 4 years.
  2. Silverfish insects are also known as ‘fish moths’.
  3. The most favourite food of silverfish is the glue in the binding of your books. If you have yellow stains on your books, you may have silverfish infestation in the house.
  4. Silverfish insects abhor the smell of citrus fruits like lemons and oranges.
  5. The silverfish insects are fantastic runners and it is very difficult to catch them red-handed eating your books or kitchen wastes.

How much of our Brain do we use?

Our body is made of many wonderful systems and organs but brain is the most astounding and mysterious of all. There are many myths about the brain and researchers are still researching to understand it completely. There are many mislead facts regarding the power of the human brain.

Do we use 100% of our Brain?

Do you know everyday we use 100% of our brain. Yes, opposed to the famous myth that no one uses 100% of their brain, the reality is that we all use it completely. Every part of our brain is associated with some part of our body, and while we are still alive, we use all the parts. So our brain is used to it’s full mass. Yes, one thing we can say is that we do not use the full potential of our brain. The human brain has infinite potential.

For instance, there is nothing in the world you cannot understand or learn but some just give up thinking that they cannot do it. The reality is every brain is equally strong to learn and understand. You need to tap into that untouched potential of your brain, give some more time to that work, and VOILA, it’s done.

Brain capacity is unlimited. The more you use it, the sharper it becomes.

11 Interesting Facts you didn’t know about the Human Brain

1. Your brain can’t multitask. Neurons in our brain fire at such a speed that we feel we’re multitasking but actually we are not.
2. Research has found that good relationships are even more important to a long life than exercise.
3. Your brain does more creative work when you’re tired.
4. People who view TV crime shows consistently overestimate the frequency of crime in the real world.
5. Seeing positive in others reveals our positive traits, seeing negative in others reveals our negative traits.
6. We seem to ignore the ones who adore us and pay more attention to those who ignore us.
7. Depression is the result of over thinking. The mind creates problems that don’t even exist.
8. Being with happy people makes you happier.
9. Your mind wanders 30% of the time.
10. Happiness, anger, sadness, fear, disgust, and surprise are the six emotions that are universally expressed.
11. People tend to be happier when they are kept busy, as this prevents them from thinking about the negative things in life.

Our brain is what separates us from other animals. It’s single handedly responsible for all the human progress and growth. Just tap into your potential and achieve the unbelievable.

Looking for more biology articles and videos? Go to: Biology for Kids.

Brush up on Dental Care basics

Get brushing and rinsing to avoid cavities and tooth ache.

We take care of every part of our body and eat right to keep us healthy, but tend to forget that oral hygiene is an important health aspect as well. You brush your teeth twice every day, but you also need to clean your gums to maintain proper oral hygiene. If you have had a desert for dinner, always brush your teeth before sleeping. Rinse thoroughly with water after every meal. Visit your dentist for a teeth check up and smile with those shiny pearls.
Related Article:

First Flower Grown in Space!

Astronauts grow their first Flower in Space

It was NASA astronaut Scott Kelly, the station commander who declared that they have grown the first flower in outer space.

Back in 2012 NASA conducted a personal biology experiment which aimed at growing different plants and flowers in space. They tried to grow veggies and sunflower, in which a sunflower bloomed partially but wilted.

Zinnia Flower blooms in Space

On November 16 2015 NASA astronauts activated the veggie plant growth system. It was the first flowering crop experiment where they rooted Zinnia seeds.

The bunch of Zinnia flowers are the first flowering plants outside the Earth’s atmosphere. These edible Zinnia’s can be eaten as salads. Zinnia plants are more difficult to grow and flower as they are more sensitive to the environment. Scientists suggest that these plants pave the way for growing crops like tomatoes in outer space. This can be great news for astronauts in outer space as they will have a variety of food to eat.

What is a Galaxy?

What are Galaxies?

Galaxies are sprawling space systems composed of dust, gas, and countless stars.

Galaxies consists of a large number of star systems, clusters and interstellar clouds.

It is believed that galaxies were formed due to a big cosmic bang billions of years ago. Just few milliseconds after the massive explosion took place the clouds of gases began to collapse and compress under the gravity, forming galaxies.

Nearly all stars belong to a group of galaxies.

Different Shapes of Galaxies

We have galaxies of different shapes. The most common shape is the elliptical galaxy, then we have the disk shaped galaxy called the spiral galaxy and finally the galaxies with an unusual or irregular shape called irregular galaxies. Galaxies which consist of less than a billion stars are considered as small galaxies.

1. Spiral Galaxies

The most beautiful type of galaxies are Spiral Galaxies. Its spiral arms are circling waves which form new stars. This shaped galaxy consists of a flat disk with a bulge in the center and spiral arms. This flat shape disk includes stars, planets, gases and dust particles which revolve around its center. It appears like a cosmic pinwheel.

For example :- Our Milky Way

2. Elliptical Galaxies

As the name suggests this shape is generally round but is stretched longer along one axis than the other. They consist of around one trillion stars but very little dust. These stars are generally older or evolved stars. In elliptical galaxies the stars orbit in random directions along a common center. The largest known galaxies are of this shape.

For example :- Maffei 1

3. Irregular Galaxies

Galaxies which are not spiral or elliptical are known as irregular galaxies. These galaxies seem to have no shape and lack distinct form. This is because they fall under the gravitational influence of close by galaxies.

For example :- Sextans A

What Galaxy is the Earth located in?

We are part of the spiral galaxy called Milky Way. It contains our Solar System. The name Milky Way has been derived from its appearance. It appears like a “milky” glowing band across the night sky. The naked eye cannot distinguish individual stars. It is called the Milky way because they say on a clear night it looks like milk spread across the sky. The Milky way consists of about 200 billion stars including our Sun.

Our galaxy is spiral in shape and has three main components :-

  • A disk in which our solar system exists
  • A central bulges
  • A halo

Galaxies often crash into one another. Even our own galaxy has had others pass right through it.

Don’t worry though, galaxies can pass through each other quite safely. Stars are so far apart that the chances of them colliding is very unlikely.

There are two galaxies close to our galaxy, the Andromeda and the Triangulum, both of which are Spiral galaxies.

Flying Squirrel

Northern Flying Squirrel

Look behind me! It’s not a bird, plane, or superman. It’s a flying squirrel. That’s right. An animal who gets into bird territory, sailing over treetops with style. I’m in North America, and I came across this fascinating mammal while taking a stroll through the forest.

How do Flying Squirrels Fly?

Wanna know something interesting? Flying squirrels don’t actually “fly”. They glide. A membrane stretched from wrist to ankle (called patagia) turns this squirrel into a living, breathing paper-plane replica. And unlike regular bushy squirrel tails, their tails are large and flat, and are used as a rudder when they fly. Wondering why they are still called flying squirrels? Because it sounds so much cooler! There are around 50 different species of flying squirrel all over the world! They live in deciduous, coniferous or mixed type of forests.

8 Fun Flying Squirrel Facts

  1. Flying squirrels are usually around 12 inches in length (including their tail), and are furry all over.
  2. They are primarily nocturnal, with large, bulging eyes that let them see in the dark.
  3. They’re also omnivores, which means, they eat meat as well as vegetation. Their diet includes fruits, berries, nuts and flowers as well as snails, mice, eggs and small birds.
  4. Although they don’t hibernate, they do slow down their activities in winter, and so they make sure they collect enough food to tide them over in winter.
  5. In fact, flying squirrels are so hardworking that they can collect up to 15000 nuts in a season!
  6. Flying squirrels are highly social animals.
  7. They live in holes in trees, and sometimes share their dens with other animals such as bats and screech owls. But they do have their share of predators too, such as raccoons, coyotes, foxes, big birds, snakes and even cats and dogs.
  8. Gliding is like a built-in insurance policy for them. It helps them get out of reach of these predators. And I’m sure it makes for a fun way to get around. I wish I could glide around!

Learn here how to draw a Squirrel in a simple and interactive way, visit: https://mocomi.com/how-to-draw-a-squirrel/

Why is Fire Orange?

Different Colours of Fire and Flames

Fire requires oxygen to burn. The middle of a burning flame, for example a candle, does not get much oxygen and is the hottest part of the flame. Thus it is blue in colour. The colour of the flame thus also depends on temperature change. The further the flame is from the hottest part; the more orange and yellow it turns. If enough oxygen is present a complete combustion (burning process) takes place with no unburnt material left.

The colour of the flame also depends on the chemical composition of the material that is being burnt. If you see wood burning then you might see a strong orange colour. This is because wood contains a high amount of sodium. The atoms of sodium emit light that is strongest and visibly orange for our eyes.

Some materials produce different coloured flames. Lithium and copper produce pink and blue flames each.

Effervescence

“Effervescence” What does that mean?

Have you ever tried shaking a soda bottle hard? If you have, you’ve probably noticed the bubbles the soda seems to be giving off. This is called Effervescence (pronounced Ef-er-ves-ens), and it happens whenever gas from soda is released. Do you know what else soda is called as? Hint: Carbon ate the water.

Tower of London

A wealthy palace, housing the Queen’s official residence; outside where guards hush; holding very valuable lavish jewels; a disreputable and ruthless prison; a grizzly bear ghost wandering at night, and many such eccentric events engulf the famous Tower of London.

History of the Tower of London

A three storied and four corner towers made of caen stone brought from France, His Majesty’s Royal Palace and Fortress the Tower of London, was constructed by William the Conqueror in 1066 in England.

It was a prison, where prisoners brought via the river Thames, would enter through the Prisoners Gate; and be publicly and mercilessly executed. There was a brutal torture room called “The Ease” where prisoners like Guy Fawkes had confessed to using gun powder to blow up the Parliament House of England. The Scavengers Daughter is an iron chained vest which prisoners wore and remained kneeled down till the body tingled; in the torture room.

The White Tower, 90 feet tall, was where once royal armory and arms were hidden. Arms like cannons, handguns and even bows and arrows were manufactured here and supplied to the army and navy. The White Tower is an escape hideout for the royal family in times of civil tension. It is also to frighten and scare the commoners.

The Ceremony of Keys takes place at 9:30pm everyday, where the tower is locked by the Yeoman Warders or Beefeaters (part of their salary consisted of beef portions), and keys are delivered to the Queen’s palace. Their scarlet red golden uniforms are made from gold threads which are worn on special occasions; and other times they wear blue. They also act at tour guides to the tower.

King Henry had placed a zoo in there with three leopards, an elephant and a polar bear. It also housed a flying squirrel, a lioness, a zebra, an alligator and a tiger. They created a stench in the Tower of London. The elephant was looked upon as an animal who had no fur, had small eyes and ate with a trunk. The polar bear would be let loose on the river Thames to catch fish. The earliest lion skull came from 1280.

The Crown Jewels

The commanding, deeply spiritual and ethnically momentous Crown Jewels are housed in the Waterloo Barracks here. Queen Elizabeth’s crown has 2800 diamonds including the Kohinoor diamond. 530.2 carat diamond, largest neutral cut diamond, adorns the Sovereign’s Sceptre with Cross. 32 billion dollars of jewels is stored here.

The Royal Mint is located here which housed the first gold coins, and makes coins for the whole of England. William Foxley, a potter, was sleeping here for almost 15 days non stop. Sir Isaac Newton was once the Warden of the Mint who caught counterfeiters.

The Tower of London always kept ravens for good luck. Sadly one of their wings is cut so that they can’t fly. Superstitious people say that if the ravens leave, the kingdom will crumble down. They are fed blood dipped biscuits and raw meat.

5 Interesting Tower of London Facts

  1. The story “Prince in the Tower” is inspired from the true story of a twelve year old prince who was imprisoned here by his uncle; and later his bones were discovered.
  2. Queen Elizabeth I was imprisoned here for two months before she was crowned.
  3. Sir Walter Raleigh maintained a garden here when he was a prisoner while writing a book.
  4. Sir Geoffrey Chaucer supervised the building of the Tower Wharf.
  5. The password to enter at night in the Tower is changed every 24 hours.

For more such interesting General Knowledge articles and videos for kids.

Have a Safe Summer Swim!

Summers are the best time to take a splash with your pals in the swimming pool. Not only are they fun but they also bring relief from the summer heat. Even though swimming pools are safe, there are certain precautions and safety measures you must take when in the pool. Always take your adults with you when you go swimming, and if you swim with them you can definitely learn some new moves. Even if you do know how to swim properly it is advisable to wear a life jacket. Stay away from the swimming pool drains as they are the most dangerous. Apply good sunscreen; wear your sunglasses and protective clothing, to avoid that sunburn even in the water.

Different Types of Numbers

What are the Different Types of Numbers?

  • Whole Numbers
  • Natural Numbers
  • Integer
  • Rational Numbers
  • Real Numbers
  • Irrational Numbers

Definition of Whole Numbers

Whole numbers are simply the numbers 0, 1, 2, 3, 4, 5….. and it goes on.

Counting Numbers
When your counting whole numbers, you must remember never to include zero, because you cannot ‘count’ zero. So while counting you start with 1, 2, 3, 4, 5 and so on.

Definition of Natural Numbers

Natural numbers can either mean “Whole Numbers”, i.e 0, 1, 2, 3, 4 or “Counting Numbers” i.e, 1, 2, 3, 4

Definition of Integer

Integers are like whole numbers, but they also include negative numbers.

So therefore, integers can be negative, i.e, -5, -4, -3, -2, -1, positive 1, 2, 3, 4, 5, or even include 0.

Confusion

Some people say that whole numbers can also be negative, and thus, that would make them integers. This is not true, and neither is it when people say that zero is not a whole number. So don’t get confused when you hear things like that.

Project
Draw a number line, with both negative and positive numbers, and identify which numbers are whole numbers, counting numbers, natural numbers and integers.

For more interesting Maths worksheets and lessons, go to : Maths for Kids

Human Bioluminescence Facts

Humans Who Glow!

Humans emit light! And we’re not talking philosophically either. We actually, physically glow. Like we’re human glow worms. And it’s scientifically proven. Are you wondering how? Read on to find out.

Why do Humans Glow?

It has been scientifically proven that humans have bioluminescence just like jellyfish and dinoflagellates that is 1000x weaker than what our eyes can see. In fact, virtually all beings have a bit of bioluminescence. It’s thought to be a by-product of the metabolic chemical reaction in our cells involving free radicals.

Japanese researchers Masaki Kobayashi and Daisuke Kikuchi from the Tohoku Institute of Technology, along with Hitoshi Okamura have been able to capture this in these images from a new sensitive camera called the CCD – cryogenic charge-coupled device.

They did this by mapping the levels on the upper body throughout the waking day.

What they found is –

1. Humans emit more light in the afternoon.
2. The highest density of light was emitted from the face, specifically, the cheeks, forehead, and neck.
3. The light does not correlate to heat.

In the ‘light’ of this, one has to wonder if the hands and feet would also be as sensitive as they have the highest density of sensory neurons along with the face.

Another point worth pondering is why we emit light. Lightning bugs emit light to communicate and for mating purposes. What about us?

There’ve been reported cases of mysterious glowing humans that go way back. In the wake of this research however, those cases don’t seem as supernatural as they were once thought to be. Just imagine, how cool would it be if the light we emit was somehow strengthened, and we were somehow able to control it? Well, at the very least, sleeping in the dark won’t be a problem anymore.

Indira Gandhi Biography

History of Indira Gandhi

Indira Gandhi was a famous Indian politician and the third Prime Minister of India. She was the daughter of the first Prime Minister of India, Pandit Jawarharlal Nehru. Her charismatic personality and intelligence made her a powerful statesperson and extremely popular amongst the common people.

Birth and Early Life

Indira Gandhi was born on 19 November 1917 in Allahabad to Kamala and Jawaharlal Nehru. Since Indira was born in a family that had roots in politics, she was exposed to politics right from a tender age. Many important leaders, including Mahatma Gandhi, used to visit her house in Allahabad. Indira often used to interact with Mahatma Gandhi and was deeply influenced by his ideologies.

College and Marriage

She garnered her initial education from Pune University and was then sent to Rabindranath Tagore’s educational institute, Shantiniketan, in West Bengal. Later, she went abroad to pursue her higher studies. In 1936, Indira came back to India and joined the Indian National Congress. Here, she met Feroze Gandhi, a young Parsi boy, who was also an important member of the Youth Wing of Congress. In 1941, despite Pandit Nehru’s objections, she married Feroze Gandhi. In 1944, Indira gave birth to Rajiv Gandhi and two years later, Sanjay Gandhi, her second son, was born.

Involvement in Politics

After independence, Pandit Jawaharlal Nehru became the first Prime Minister of India. During this time, Indira remained busy in taking care of her family and became a little less active in politics. Thereafter, one tragedy after another hit her: on 8 September 1960, Feroze Gandhi passed away after suffering a major heart attack and in 1964, Pandit Nehru passed away. After the sudden demise of her husband and father, Indira decided to join the active politics. She contested the next elections and won with a comfortable margin over her opponents. She was appointed as the Information and Broadcasting Minister under the then Prime Minister Lal Bahadur Shastri.

After the death of Lal Bahadur Shastri on 11 January 1966, the Congress high-command unanimously selected Indira as their leader and she thus became the Prime Minister of India. In 1971, in order to stop the infiltration of Bangladeshi refugees, Indira Gandhi extended military support to East Pakistan and helped it achieve freedom from West Pakistan. India’s victory in the 1971 Indo- Pakistan war augmented the popularity of Indira Gandhi as a far-sighted and wise political leader.

In 1975, Indira faced severe resistance and criticism from the opposition over the issues of unchecked corruption, growing inflation and other irregularities in the government set-up. A ruling of Allahabad High Court was released ordering her to vacate her seat with immediate effect. In view of the growing political chaos, on 26 June, 1975, Indira Gandhi declared ‘political emergency’. During this period, her political rivals were arrested, constitutional rights of the citizens were taken away and the press was kept under strict scrutiny. In 1977, fearing military coup, Indira Gandhi called for general elections and, as anticipated, she lost them by a big margin.

Later Life and Death

Indira Gandhi came back to power in 1980 and started working for the welfare of the country.  In September 1981, a Sikh terrorist group demanding a separate state of ‘Khalistan’ entered into the sacred premises of the Golden Temple, Amritsar. Indira Gandhi ordered the army to launch ‘Operation Blue Star’ and barge into the holy shrine in a bid to take out the militants. This action deeply hurt the sentiments of the Sikh community.

On 31 October 1984, Indira Gandhi was assassinated by her own bodyguards and we lost a great leader. Indira Gandhi will always be remembered for her praiseworthy efforts towards the development and progress of science, space exploration, agriculture and implementing several important policies related to the country’s economy.

3 Facts about Indira Gandhi

  1. Indira Gandhi’s middle name was Priyadarshini.
  2. Indira Gandhi was the only woman Prime Minister of India.
  3. In her last public address, Indira had said, “I don’t mind if my life goes in the service of the nation. If I die today every drop of my blood will invigorate the nation”.

What is life?

Life : Definition

The process of growing and changing and multiplying is life.

Life is Evolution!

Life is also evolution. We evolved from chimps. This evolution doesn’t stop. One of the things that life does is building up large molecules like DNA and proteins.

All living things need energy. They need to eat to sustain themselves and shed waste. They respond to their environment and grow and develop. Thus, in order for a thing to have life in it, it must possess these qualities.

Scientific Definition of Life

Scientifically speaking life is when atoms became molecules which formed compounds creating virus like organisms- single celled and multi-cell organisms. They multiplied and filled the earth with living creatures of various shapes and sizes. This is life.

Life doesn’t necessarily mean all things which are seen moving and breathing. Sometimes there are organisms like extremophiles which grow and live in extreme environment conditions and one might think they are non-living. Organisms living inside hot springs or really cold temperatures also are life.

Dubai Miracle Garden

I’m in a garden with around 100 million flowers!! I’m at the Miracle Garden in Dubai, and I have never seen so many flowers in one place!! Located next to Dubai Land in Al Bashra, the garden is spread over 72000 sq.mt and is the largest flower garden in the world.

Facts about the Dubai Miracle Gardens

When I entered the place, I felt like I had somehow been transported to the world of Oz! This place is a riot of colors and scents! Everywhere I go, I see extravagant and creative arrangements of flowers. I cannot decide what I like more – the blooming pyramids and igloos, the floral heart archways, or the archways with a ceiling of colorful umbrellas! It’s like an exhibition of glorious botanical art. There are more than 70 varieties flowers here, most of them rare, and new to the Middle East.

You can see here statues upon masterfully sculpted statues, adorned with beautiful flowers, of birds, bees and cartoon characters alike. Believe it or not, there’s even a botanical Burj Khalifa here, in this fantasy land of flowers. It’s almost as if the flowering plants here decided to mimic the outside world.

Who made the Dubai Miracle Garden?

The garden was built by Al-Ain based Akar Landscaping and Agriculture Company as an outdoor attraction for residents and tourists alike. And the place is a major crowd puller, around 30,000 on weekends!

The place is also known for its kilometer long flower wall. I haven’t even mentioned the butterfly garden yet. Would you believe it? Domes full of live, colorful fluttering butterflies! Need I say more?

The most interesting thing about the garden isn’t the amazing display of flowers though. One would expect a place such as this to consume water and energy on a massive scale. Although by no means a minimal consumer of water and energy, the attraction has a sub-surface irrigation system that recycles waste water via drip irrigation while avoiding evaporation and saving up to 75% of water and energy! That’s like icing on the cake!

I’m telling you, coming to this place is like literally walking into a miraculous oasis in the desert!

Green Revolution : Facts

What is the Green Revolution?

Ever since early man began cultivating land, he has been trying to improve the quality of seeds and yields. The ‘Green Revolution’ was initiated by Norman Ernest Borlaug an American agronomist who is considered as the “Father of Green Revolution’. It was his initiative to encourage the use of high yielding varieties of grains, better irrigation facilities etc.

Motive behind the Green Revolution

This revolution began as a measure to improve and increase the production of food globally by using better and improved irrigation facilities, pesticides and fertilizers, use of high yielding grains etc.

The successful use of various agricultural experiments refers to the ‘Green Revolution’ that took place in various developing countries. India is one of the countries where the Green Revolution had an excellent success rate.

Success of Green Revolution

  1. The widespread shortage of food after the Second World War led to the need for better and improved systems of agriculture to provide food for the world.
  2. The revolution is believed to have begun in Northwest Mexico after improved varieties of wheat increased the yield due to all the technological factors.
  3. These new and improved practices replaced the traditional methods of farming in most developing countries. Rice, wheat and corn were the crops that found new life.

Green Revolution in India

  • India was facing a massive famine situation in the 1960’s. This lead to India joining the Green Revolution.
  • Our government chose the state of Punjab as the first place to try the new crop due to the availability of water for agriculture.
  • India wanted to be self – sufficient in providing food for the large growing nation.
  • To improve the yield, the green revolution adopted high yielding seeds, use of pesticides, various land reforms, new and improved infrastructure in rural areas, use of good fertilizers, easy and effective credit facilities to farmers and the establishment of good agricultural institutes and colleges.
  • India grew one crop a year due to its rainfall season, the primary aspect of the green revolution was double cropping that was to grow two crops per season instead of the earlier practice of one crop. Large irrigation projects were set up to ensure the second crop farming every year.
  • India produced new high quality yields of rice, wheat, corn and millet which lead to the increase of grains by millions of tonnes every year.

Winklepicker

What does “Winklepicker” mean?

Winklepicker, pronounced [wihn-kl-ph-kar] is a type of shoe with long pointy edges. They were quite the fashion in the 1950s. It was popular with men and women alike. In fact, they’re quite common even today. Think you can find a winklepicker on your shoe rack?

Virus and Bacteria : Difference

What is the difference between Virus and Bacteria?

We often hear the terms virus and bacteria in our daily lives, generally we hear these terms with reference to the diseases caused by them, but did you know that they have their advantages too. Let us understand what virus and bacteria really are.

What is Virus?

Viruses are extremely small substances made of nucleic acids (RNA – ribonucleic acid or DNA – deoxyribonucleic acid) and proteins, which can only be seen through an electron microscope. It is a small, infectious agent or parasite that cannot reproduce by itself, but it replicates inside the living cells of an organism. They do not live freely in nature, they live only inside other cells. They infect all organisms – from animals and plants to bacteria and archaea.

The word virus is derived from a Latin word which means‘ slimy liquid’ or ‘poison’. The plural of virus is referred to as viruses.

Viruses are found wherever there is the existence of life. They are believed to have existed since the evolution of living cells. Viruses spread in many ways, in plants they are often transmitted from one plant to another by insects. In animals they can be carried or transmitted by blood sucking insects.

Shapes of Viruses

Viruses are usually spiral shaped or shaped like soccer balls, some large viruses could be a combination of both shapes. Viruses take over the metabolism of their host cells. They usually kill the host cells after producing more virus. Viruses attack only one kind of host.

A virus is like a gene. It has no cell of its own, it depends on the host cell that it infects to reproduce. It produces more virus particles of its own kind through the host cell, eventually killing the host cell. The liberated virus particles then goes on to attack new host cells.

The virus inserts its genetic material into its host, taking over the host’s functions. The infected cells produce more viral protein. Some viruses may remain dormant inside their host cells for long periods causing no change in their host cells . Dormant viruses when stimulated, enter a phase called the‘ lytic’ phase, wherein the new viruses are formed and they burst out of the host cell killing it and move on to infect other cells.

When the virus is found outside the host cells , it exists as a protein coat which sometimes is enclosed in a membrane.

The damage done to the cell leads to the sickness or disease that we see. Different kinds of viruses cause different diseases. Certain common viral diseases are the common cold, influenza, small pox, rabies, HIV etc. There are no cures for viral diseases, though some of them can be prevented using vaccinations. Walter Reed discovered the first human virus, the yellow fever virus in the year 1901.

What is Bacteria?

Bacteria are the simplest form of living creatures . They are present almost every- where , even inside us. They are unicellular organisms ( organisms with a single cell – prokaryotes without a true nucleus).

We often hear or speak of bacteria in terms of the harm they cause, but it is important to note that they are also very helpful and can be tasty.

There are several species of bacteria found in the air, water, soil, food stuffs and even within living organisms.

They are the smallest living organisms on earth in fact they are very, very, very small in size.

4 Shapes of Bacteria –

  1. The spherical bacteria – Cocci
  2. Rod shaped bacteria – Bacilli
  3. The spiral shaped bacteria – Spirilla and
  4. The comma shaped bacteria called the Vibrio.

The word bacteria was derived from the word ‘bakterion’ meaning a small rod or staff, in the 19th century by Ferdinand Cohn.

The structure of each bacterium is very simple.

Bacteria consists of

  • A living substance called the protoplast.
  • The protoplast is surrounded by a cell wall which is non – living and stiff .
  • Beneath the cell wall, is a thin cell – membrane that surrounds the cytoplasm. The cytoplasm consists of the vacuoles, granules and in some rare cases it also contains some green pigment.
  • There is absence of a well defined nucleus, though the chromatin material called DNA is present in the central portion of the cell.

Most bacteria cannot move about on their own, they are transported by wind, water or through contact.
Since bacteria do not contain the green pigment found in plants, called chlorophyll, they are heterotrophic, that means they have to depend on ready – made food from various sources. They could be‘ saprotrophic’ or ‘ parasitic’ bacteria.
Saprotrophic bacteria are those bacteria that derive their nourishment from dead or decaying organisms.
Parasitic bacteria are those bacteria that draw their nourishment from the body of their living hosts.
Bacteria reproduce very fast through cell division.

Beneficial uses of Bacteria :-

  • The bacteria present in certain foods, like yogurt can actually prevent plaque from sticking to our teeth.
  • Bacteria is used in the fermentation of beans that go in to the making of chocolate.
  • Bacteria is used to preserve certain foods made from vegetables and are used to make some sauces used in cooking like the soya sauce.
  • They are used in the making of certain medicines like antibiotics, serums and vaccines.
  • They play an important role in agriculture. The bacteria present in the soil breaks down the soil nitrates thereby releasing nitrogen gas in to the air.

How do Bacteria cause disease?

  • Many bacteria tend to spoil cooked food especially during summer through fermentation thereby causing food poisoning.
  • In plants, bacteria causes two very common diseases, namely black rot of mustard and cauliflower and the bacterial blight of cowpea.
  • In animals, we commonly see the diseases like anthrax ( swelling on the body and reduction in the yield of milk ) and tuberculosis.
  • In humans, it causes diseases such as cholera, typhoid, tuberculosis, whooping cough, pneumonia etc.

Summer Bucket List!

The scorching summer heat restrains you to go out and play. Summer vacations are also on their way. So, instead of sitting at home and getting bored or just watching TV or playing video games, here is a little bucket list of things you can enjoy this summer.

You can learn to make ice creams at home or collect cardboard boxes and make a fort of yourself. Collect family pictures and make a yearbook or go for morning walks and take pictures of nature and then create a collage. Learn to plant a small vegetable garden at home or try and visit museums that you have never been to. String beads into cool jewellery or set up your own lemonade stand in your neighbourhood.

Sea Otters hold hands while Sleeping!

10 Interesting Facts about Sea Otters

  1. Sea otters are the heaviest and the smallest marine mammals.
  2. Sea otters can also be termed as one of the most family oriented mammals on earth.
  3. They are often seen floating in the sea water in groups while eating, resting or sleeping.
  4. They make a group chain called a raft and do everything together.
  5. The male rafts are larger than the female rafts.
  6. A raft can have two or sometimes even hundred sea otters holding each other’s hands.
  7. The largest sea otter raft contained over 2000 sea otters!
  8. They do this so that they do not drift away from their group.
  9. They do not want to lose a single member of their family.
  10. Sea otters have the densest fur in the mammal world and were close to extinction as they have been hunted for their fur. But they are now protected by the International Fur Seal Treaty in the United States.

Invention of Telephone

Who Invented the Telephone?

Alexander Graham Bell, also known as the father of the telephone, was the man behind the science of transmitting voice over a wire. His mother and wife were both deaf, and this was what influenced him to create a machine that could convey a message over a single wire.

Why did Alexander Graham Bell invent the Telephone?

Alexander Bell studied the human voice and also worked for many schools for the deaf. He loved working with sound and telegraph instruments. He was very much interested in electricity and made many attempts to send several telegraphic messages using a single wire. He took the help of a local engineer, Thomas Watson, who later became his closest friend.

The two friends became obsessed with producing sound over the harmonic telegraph – a device which was used to send multiple messages over a single wire.

History of the Telephone Invention

On 2nd June 1875 while Watson was working on some reeds of the telegraph in another room, Bell heard the sound of reeds coming to him from the other end of the wire. They got excited and after some adjustments the instrument transmitted Bell’s voice to Watson. The invention was done but they still had a lot of work to do. First was to submit a patent which was finally issued in 1976 to Bell. As soon as Bell was issued the patent, the telephone carried its first sentence “Mr. Watson, come here, I want to see you.”

Alexander Bell now started to improve the design of the telephone. The telephone had now become a business and many private telephone lines began connecting businessmen and offices to homes.

The Telephone wasn’t the only invention Bell made. After the telephone bell created the photophone which used light to transmit sound. He invented a metal vacuum jacket that helped people with breathing trouble. Bell also invented an electromagnetic machine which detected where a bullet was lodged in the body when President James Garfield was shot. It failed at that time but it laid the foundation for metal detectors.

Alexander Graham Bell was a visionary who believed that one day people will not only use the telephone just to speak but will also be able to see the person on the other end.

How do Sharks navigate?

Interestingly, it seems sharks have their own version of google maps. Research shows that sharks, atleast, two confirmed specied – tiger sharks and thresher sharks, somehow orient themselves and navigate towards a target across long distances.

Do Sharks have a Sixth Sense?

It is still not clear exactly how they do it, but the fact that they do is abundantly clear, backed by solid research. Scientists and researchers concluded this after several observations of shark travels and their patterns, using data from tiger sharks tagged with acoustic transmitters, and found that they took directed paths from place to place. Thresher sharks and tiger sharks appear to intentionally travel long distances, with an apparently in-built navigation system.

How far do Sharks Travel?

Thresher sharks have been seen to travel around 400 to 1900 meteres, while tiger sharks have been observed traveling more than 6 kilometers, and sometimes even 8 kilometres! In fact, the travels of the tiger shark indicate that the shark has put some thought into it! The tiger sharks swam across deep water at night, indicating that vision was not being used for navigation. They might have used their sense of smell and sound, but given the distance, this seems unlikely.

Magnetic Shark Repellent

Scientists suspect that sharks may be using the Earth’s magnetic field to orient themselves for long journeys according to research leader Yannis Papastamatiou from the Florida Museum of Natural History in Gainesville.

Further research also shows that older sharks travel longer distances, which suggests that their mental maps build up as they age.

Are you wondering why they have this super-sense of direction? Presumably because they need to find their way across great distances from the depth of oceans, without any other navigational assistance.

Wouldn’t it be awesome to have an in-built GPS like sharks apparently do?

Related Article

Siem Reap, Cambodia

The Angkor Temples, Siem Reap

I’m at the gateway to a millennium old temple! The primary gateway to the ruins of the Angkor temples, Siem Reap is often known as the life-support system for the temples. It is the provincial capital of Northwest Cambodia and is the closest city to the world heritage site, the Angkor Archaeological Park. Being so close to a designated world heritage site has made the once quaint village of Siem Reap a tourist boom town! There are just so many things to experience here!

History of Siem Reap

The name Siem Reap, I learned, can be translated to mean “Siamese Defeated”, which is a reference to the victory of the Khmer empire over the Thai kingdom back in the 17th Century. But there are also arguments that state this to be untrue. Scholars maintain that the origin of the name is unknown. Isn’t that mysterious?

Popular Tourist destination in Cambodia

The transition of this village to a tourist hub can be attributed to the French. They came in during the 19th century, and following a Franco-Siamese treaty, helped transform the town into what it is today. Since then, the town has become the most popular tourist destination in Cambodia. One of the things I noticed was the ease of getting around to and around Siem Reap. Commuting here is fun, and the options range from cheap green bikes and tuk-tuks to even helicopters, if you’re willing to spend the money.

As I mentioned earlier, the town is full of things to see and experience. Apart from the must-see temples of Angkor, there are also several other temples around the town to see. The museums and markets for visitors were also rather fun to explore. I found the Landmine museum especially interesting, and would definitely recommend it!

If you like getting massages, go for a blind massage and you can be assured of a relaxing massage by trained experts. If you’re more adventurous, there are also bike tours and sports activities to be enjoyed. And the food is simply lip-smacking. You’ll find something delicious to eat around the Old Market area no matter what your food preferences are.

I must say I’m glad I took my own sweet time exploring this delightful place.

Is there Life on Mars?

Mars is a very cold and dry planet. It does not support liquid water in any form because of its dry surface. Mars does have extremely high mountains which have ice on the caps. Some areas also have frozen ground but no running water.

Why can’t Mars support Life?

Mars is similar to Earth and that is the reason why scientists want to discover life on it, but Mars’ atmosphere gives it away. The Earth has a magnetic field that helps in driving away dangerous particles of space radiation from the atmosphere. Mars does not have such magnetic field, thus harmful space radiation reaches its atmosphere resulting in very less air and no life.

All life on Earth depends on water. Since Mars does not have any source of running water, life is impossible there.

Scientists are trying to discover and study fossils on Mars to see if there was once life on the planet and maybe it did not succeed like us at home!

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Chatoyant

“Chatoyant” What does that mean?

Have you ever noticed a cat’s eyes? Beautiful, and rather unique, aren’t they? They look like jewels in the dark, don’t they? The word Chatoyant, pronounced [sha-toi-ent], is derived from the French verb chatoyer, which literally means to shine like a cat’s eyes. A chatoyant jewel is one that has a healthy luster in the form of a narrow band of white light. Have you seen a jewel like that?

A to Z of Insects – Complete List

The world of insects is diverse and fascinating! There are more species of insects than all other animals put together. Insects can be predators, prey, hosts, parasites, decomposers and even herbivores.

What are Insects?

Insects are a class of invertebrates and belong to a large group of the animal kingdom called arthropods. They make up to 84% of known animals in the world. Yes, insects are also animals.

Arthropods have a three part body- head, thorax and abdomen; three pairs of jointed legs; compound eyes and one pair of antennae. All arthropods are exoskeleton; i.e.; their skeletons are outside their body.

There are over 7,00,000 different species of insects in the world! Most insects live on land and are very well adapted to their environment. Insects come from eggs, growing through various stages or metamorphosis to reach adulthood.

What is the Largest Insect in the World?

The Giant Weta is termed as the largest and heaviest insect in the world. It is found in New Zealand. They can be up to 10 cm long excluding their legs and antenna and can weigh more than 35 grams; some even 70 grams.

What is the Smallest Insect in the World?

On the other hand, Fairyflies are the smallest insects in the world and are only 0.5 to 1 mm in length. Found in temperate tropical regions they are rarely noticed by humans because of their size. There are various types of insects.

Take a look at the A to Z list of insects of our world,

No.

A – Z

A to Z Insect Name

1

A

Archaeognatha (bristletails)

2

B

Blattodea (cockroaches)

3

C

Coleoptera (beetles)

4

C

Dermaptera (earwigs)

5

D

Diptera (flies)

6

E

Embioptera (web-spinners)

7

E

Ephemeroptera (mayflies)

8

F

Flea beetles (leaf insects)

9

G

Grylloblattodea (rock crawlers)

10

H

Hemiptera (bugs)

11

H

Hymenoptera (bees, wasps, ants, sawflies)

12

I

Isoptera (termites)

13

J

Japanese beetle (beetles)

14

K

Katydids (grasshoppers)

15

L

Lepidoptera (moths and butterflies)

16

M

Mantodea (mantids)

17

M

Megaloptera (dobsonflies and alderflies)

18

M

Mecoptera (scorpionflies)

19

N

Neuroptera (antlions and lacewings)

20

O

Odonata (damselflies and dragonflies)

21

O

Orthoptera (crickets and grasshoppers)

22

P

Plecoptera (stoneflies)

23

P

Phasmotodea (stick and leaf insects)

24

P

Psocoptera (barklice and booklice)

25

P

Phthiraptera (parasitic lice)

26

Q

Queen Alexandra’s Birdwing (butterfly)

27

R

Rapdhidioptera (snakeflies)

28

S

Strepsiptera (strepsipterans)

29

S

Siphonaptera (fleas)

30

T

Thysanura (silverfish)

31

T

Thysanoptera (thrips)

32

T

Trichoptera (caddisflies)

33

U

Unlined Giant Chafer Beetle (leaf insects)

34

V

Viceroy (butterfly)

35

V

Velvet mites (bugs)

36

W

Whiteflies (white moths)

37

X

Xylocopid bees (bees)

38

Y

Yellow Ants (ants)

39

Z

Zoraptera (angel insects)

Ice Cream Lovers – Beware!

The summers call for a cool treat! Enjoying an ice cream during a hot day is just the perfect summer time activity. But too much of frozen treats can upset the stomach and may lead to diarrhoea and indigestion. Children with respiratory problems should avoid frozen treats as it can aggravate the condition. A weak throat can catch a throat infection too. Not only that; ice creams are loaded with sugar and will add up to unnecessary calories. Have cold yoghurt or gelato if you want a frozen treat- it contains less calories.

Looking for more Health Tip articles? Go to: Quack A Tip for Kids.

Difference between Mass and Weight

What is the difference between Mass and Weight?

What is the meaning of the sentence when someone says “His weight is 40 kg?”

The term ‘weight’ is commonly used to describe the amount of matter that is contained in an object or a person. Though conventionally correct, seen technically, this description is very wrong! The given definition can be used to define the mass of any object or person but not weight.
What, then, does weight actually mean?

Let us start from scratch and see what does mass and weight mean individually.

What is Mass?

It defines the amount of matter in the object.

What is Weight?

It defines the amount of force exerted by the gravitational force on the object.

Given the definitions of weight and mass, we can extract the differences between mass and weight.

Mass is the basic property of a matter whereas weight defines the force with which the mass of an object is pulled down due to gravity.

Let us imagine we take a trip to moon. What do you think your weight and mass would be on moon? The mass never changes with place, but weight does. Hence, on moon, your mass would be the same as that on earth whereas your weight would differ as according to the gravitational pull exerted by the given planet.

Mass is a scalar quantity whereas weight is a vector quantity. Now, what exactly does scalar and vector mean?

What is Scalar?

The quantities which describe only the numerical value of a given force are known as scalar quantities. The example, as given above, is mass. More examples include speed, time temperature and such.

What is Vector?

The quantities which describe the direction along with the numerical value of a given force are known as vector quantities. The examples of vector quantities are weight, velocity, acceleration and many more.

Units of Mass and Weight

  • Mass : The unit of mass is Kilogram(Kg).
  • Weight : The unit of weight is Newton(N).

Mathematically, the weight of an object is equal to the mass of that object multiplied by the gravitational force.

W=mg

where W is the weight, m denotes the mass and g is the universal acceleration of gravity or in simpler terms, Gravity.

These two quantities do not even have the same units of measurement! How can they be same? In conclusion, both the quantities are different but not independent from each other.

Activity :
The mass of a laptop on earth is 2 kg, and the constant gravitational force is 9.8 m/s2, what is the weight of the laptop.

Answer : w = mg
=(2 kg)* (9.8 m/s2)
=19.6 N

The Elephant – Undisputed King of Animal Sniffers!

African Elephants – Mammals with best smelling sense on earth!

Elephants trunk is flexible and can be shortened or lengthened and moved in all directions. The trunk is not only useful to carry logs, or help elephants eat or spray water on themselves; it has the unique ability to make elephants smell water from a great distance.

An elephant trunk has three nostrils. By raising their trunk high, elephants are able to gather scent particles in the air. These particles pass through seven olfactory organs filled with millions of cells. It is these sensory cells that can differentiate between various smells. These scent particles also help the elephants with the direction to of water and how far it is.

African elephants can beat a bloodhound’s sniffing abilities. They even use their trunks to detect predators and potential danger at a distance or even food.

For more interesting Facts about Elephants CHECK HERE.

What does it take to be a Jockey?

“Horse races sound like fun! They’re so exciting. I’m going to be a jockey. I’m short enough for it” That is a good example of how not to be a jockey. Being the short strong person who leads a horse to victory isn’t an easy thing to do. Like with any other sport, it takes years of toiling and training to be a good jockey. Let’s see what it takes to be a Jockey

How to become a Jockey : 7 Tips

1. It’s not about being short –

That’s like saying you would need a DSLR to be a photographer. While the DSLR would definitely help one to be a photographer, it’s hardly everything of importance. Similarly, when it comes to being a Jockey, being short is an added advantage and nothing more. Jockeys are short because they are (meant to be) lighter than their taller counterparts. Most jockeys weigh less than or equal to 110 pounds. This is because horses are allowed to carry a maximum of 120 pounds into the race, and that is inclusive of the jockey and his gear.

2. Be as fit as a horse –

Horse racing isn’t child’s play, and a jockey needs to be lean, strong and flexible in order to do it. It is said that jockeys are the fittest athletes in the world. And for good reason. Jockeys need to be physically strong, as well as have the finesse to manoeuvre a horse during a race.

3. Have the nerve –

Even if you’re athletic enough, it takes a brave heart to ride a horse at high speeds. Horses are living beings, and that makes them unpredictable at times. A jockey needs to be able to maintain his cool and “hold his horses” in times of difficulty.

4. Be a horse whisperer –

It goes without saying that a jockey must have a love and appreciation for horses. And he/she should know how to communicate with one. Horses can tell when you’re scared, and can read the jockey as well as he can read them.

5. Know your limits –

No two horses are alike, and a good jockey knows that even the same horse cannot deliver the same performance every time. It’s important to know your (and your horse’s) limits of physical endurance and bravery and know when to push harder, and when to stop.

6. Live in a stable –

It might sound weird, but good jockeys spend a major part of their life in and around stables. This helps them to learn the ins and outs of racing, and also bond better with their horses.

7. Train hard, really hard-

Jockeys train mighty hard. This usually means early hours, working 7 days a week, and not too many vacations. Jockeys can ride up to 10 horses a day as exercise!

If you decide you can do all this, research thoroughly for horse farms, where you can learn to ride and care for horses. There are many schools and training centres these days as well, where you can learn to ride and race. Being a jockey isn’t about horsing around, is it? It is after all, hard work that pays – in any profession.

Why Sea Water is salty and River Water not?

When we go to a beach often the sea water gets into our mouth and it tastes salty. On the other hand when we visit a river or a waterfall the water is clear and unsalted.

Difference between Fresh Water and Salt Water

  • River water is mostly rain water that is always running or soaked by the soil. Rainwater is not salty. Clouds bring rain with the help of vapour which is unsalted. Rivers are constantly running. They pick up minerals and salt from the rocks they pass by. Rivers run towards the ocean and when river water mixes with the ocean water, the salt mixes along with it.
  • River waters are constantly being restocked by fresh water from rain and springs, thus they do not taste salty. But the ocean collects all of the river water salt and minerals. The ocean floor also contains minerals which get dissolved in the water, adding to the salinity of the sea.
  • The process of evaporation starts when the heat from the sun evaporates water from the ocean and produces vapour. When sea water evaporates the salt is left behind because salt is too heavy to become vapour. Thus ocean water remains salty. Millions of years have passed and with constant evaporation and inflow of river water, our oceans have reached a stagnant point of salinity.
  • Now, there are certain lakes too which are saline. That is because such lakes do not have escapes to rivers or sea. Rivers carried water to these lakes, the water in the lakes evaporated but left the salt behind.
  • Another reason why ocean water is salty is submarine volcanism or the eruption of volcanoes under the ocean. Here sea water reacts with the hot rocks erupted by the volcanoes and dissolves the mineral constituents. This also adds to the salt content of the ocean.

Little known Facts about Fresh Water and Salt Water

  1. 96% of the earth’s water is sea water.
  2. Sodium chloride or common table salt is the most prevalent salt in the oceans.
  3. 1 gallon of sea water = ½ cup of salt
  4. The Ganges, Yangtze and Indus are the most polluted rivers on Earth.
  5. 65% of drinking water comes from rivers and streams.

How does a Zipper Work?

What is Zipper?

A zip is a wonderful modern invention that makes your life extremely convenient. Think of how much time it takes to button up a shirt versus the time it takes to zip up a jacket. Zippers are very convenient and can be made from almost any material. They come in different shapes and sizes and ever since they were invented by Gideon Sundback in 1917 they have become an integral part of jackets, pants, suitcases, sleeping bags, shoes… well, you get the idea.

The function of a zip relies on two basic principles- the wedge and the hook.

The wedge is a simple machine. It is any triangular shaped object that can be used to exert force perpendicular to it. Think of that cabinet in your kitchen that never remains shut. If you push a wedge between the door of the cabinet and the frame, it will exert pressure sideways on the door and the frame at the same time, keeping it shut.

The second principle is the hook. A simple curvy shape that allow you to grab on to something.

ZIP ME UP

The zipper is made up of 2 main parts: a slide which you use to open and close the zip and a set of teeth that are on either side the object you want to zip up.

If you look carefully at the teeth you will notice that each tooth is exactly the same distance away from the next and each one of them are identical. This is absolutely necessary for a zip to function properly.

The design of the tooth on this track is such that they are able to interlock with each because it is shaped like a hook. With the help of the slide each tooth can hook onto the one above and below it. The slide allows each hook to meet at a particular angle that locks into position once its moved on. This is where the slide comes in.

When the slider is going in the other direction it once again angles the teeth so they can be released and a wedge in the slide physically pushes them apart. We learnt before that the force exerted by a wedge is always perpendicular to it, so even though the slide is going down it pushes the teeth of the zip sideways.

It really is that simple!

PROJECT
The Wedge is one of 6 simple machines. Find out what the other 5 are by typing in simple machines in the search bar.

The Golden Snub-nosed Monkey

The Orange Monkey

Isn’t that the cutest monkey ever?? I’m in the mountains of China, and the cute, furry creature behind me is the Golden nosed monkey. Also known as the snub-nosed leaf monkey and the orange monkey, this monkey is native to the central and southwest mountains of China, and the Tibetan mountains.

Old World monkeys

These Old World monkeys. What does this mean? This means that the golden snub-nosed monkey has several human-like characteristics, such as nostrils that are close together, fingernails on hands and thick pads of skin around their tails that serve as a cushion when they are sitting. Also, their tails are long but not prehensile like those of New World monkeys, which means they cannot use their tails to grasp objects or hang from tree branches.

Why do Snub-nosed Monkeys have such short noses?

Although super-cute, their noses do seem rather short for a monkey, don’t they? The reason behind this is that the temperature around here is so low that a longer nose is just a nose that’s easily frost-bitten! The cold is also the reason for their thick fur! Another interesting fact about them is that they aren’t born with golden fur. Old is gold is actually true in their case. The baby monkeys are born with gray fur, which progressively turns reddish gold with age.

Living in Groups

These monkeys live in groups of about 10, called units. A unit usually consists of a single male and several females. Units band together for protection from predators and look for food. In fact, sometimes, bands have been known to come together and form troops of hundreds! Kind of like a human society, isn’t it?

Are Golden Snub-nosed Monkeys endangered?

Sadly though, these monkeys are now an endangered species, because of hunting and poaching activities, primarily for meat and the beautiful golden fur, which is rumored to have medicinal properties. Efforts are being made to protect what’s left of their dwindling population though, and one hopes that this beautiful species is saved.

Lagom

“Lagom” What does that mean?

Have you ever looked at something and thought, “That’s too much!” or “That’s too little!”? And sometimes we find things that are “just right”. That’s what Lagom means! A Swedish word pronounced [law-gom], Lagom means neither too much, not too little, but just right, somewhere in the middle. There’s a popular fairytale that had a lot to do with the concept of Lagom. Do you know which one that is?

Facts about Elephants

Elephants are the largest mammals that live on earth today. They have been here since the ages of dinosaurs! Yes, they are ancient and have seen so many changes around them. Let us look at some of the most interesting and amazing facts about this fascinating mammal.

11 Fun Elephant Facts

  1. There are two types of elephants- African and Asian. The African elephants are bigger and taller than Asians. Both female and male African elephants have tusks, but only the Asian male has tusks.
  2. Elephants are either left or right-tusked. The one tusk they use more is generally smaller in size due to wear and tear.
  3. Elephants have large, thin and very sensitive ears which are made up of several blood vessels that help regulate their body temperatures. During hot climates the blood is circulated through their ears which help them cool down.
  4. An elephant’s trunk is not just a long nose that helps it to spray water or carry load. Elephant’s trunk can smell water up to 3 miles away. Not only that, it can even sense the direction of water. It is also able to sense the size, shape and temperature of objects. The trunks contain more than 50,000 muscles!
  5. An adult elephant can drink up to 210 litres of water and can consume 500 pounds of hay every day. They spend about 16 hours a day only eating! They are herbivorous and eat leaves, twigs, bamboo, banana and hay.
  6. Elephants can live as long as eighty years. Indian elephants can live up to seventy years.
  7. An Asian elephant and an African forest elephant can weigh around 2,700 kg and can reach a height of 8 feet. An African Bush elephant is the heaviest and can weight almost 5500 kg.
  8. A female elephant is called a cow that gives birth to a calf after 22 months of gestation, which is the longest for any mammal. While male elephants tend to live alone, females tend to move in herds.
  9. Elephants maintain the forest ecosystem for survival of other animal species. They are an integral part of the rich biodiversity. Elephants are an endangered species as they have been poached for their tusks by ivory hunters.
  10. Elephants can swim. They use their trunks above water to help them breathe.
  11. Elephants have no natural predators. However lions sometimes prey on weak or really young elephants. It is only the humans that kill elephants for their own greed.

History of Chocolate

When was it first made?

The first people to make chocolate were some of the most famous ancient civilizations of Mexico and Central America, including the Aztecs, Incas and Mayans. They mixed the crushed cocoa seeds with different type of seasonings, including chilies, to make a hot, spicy and frothy drink called ‘chocolatl’ which meant warm liquid.

When was it discovered by travellers?

According to the historians, Christopher Columbus, the famous explorer, had tasted this drink and had also brought some cocoa beans to Spain. Though Columbus discussed the possibility of using the cocoa beans commercially with the Spanish King and Queen, they somehow did not show any interest in it and the matter was put to rest.

When it became famous?

Some years later, Hernan Cortez, a Spanish explorer, happened to visit the Aztecs in Mexico. The Aztecs served him their royal drink ‘chocolatl’. Though the drink tasted slightly bitter, Cortez liked it very much and took some cocoa beans back with him to Spain. In order to make the drink sweeter, he added some cane sugar to it. This new drink soon became a rage in Spain, especially in the aristocratic section of the society. The Spanish then wisely started cocoa tree plantation which turned into an extremely profitable business. The Spanish people successfully kept the art of their cocoa plantations and royal drink a secret from the rest of the European countries for almost a hundred years.

It was the Spanish monks, who leaked the secret out and then what happened was bound to happen. Chocolate drinks became the most preferred beverage after tea and coffee in the entire world. Soon, other European countries also started developing their own cacao industry.

7 Interesting facts about chocolate

  1. The Aztecs and Mayans used chocolates as money to buy things.
  2. The Aztec kings drank more than tens of cups of hot chocolate in a day.
  3. In ancient times, chocolate was known as ‘food of Gods’.
  4. The early people only ‘drank’ chocolate; they did not ‘eat’ chocolate until the first chocolate bars were manufactured in Switzerland in the year 1819.
  5. Those who are exceptionally fond of eating chocolates are known as chocoholics.
  6. Just as caffeine is known to energize people, chocolates are believed to make people happy.
  7. The Chocolates contain a wide range of nutrients including vitamins such as Vitamin-B and minerals such as potassium, calcium and iron.

More about chocolates –

Ever wondered how chocolate is made?, find out here https://mocomi.com/how-is-chocolate-made/
Chocolate prices to double by 2020! Here’s complete news https://mocomi.com/we-are-running-out-of-chocolate/

Coconut Water the Natural Summer Drink!

The summers are back, the scorching heat and the unbearable thirst are here to drain us all out.

Mothers will be ready with glasses of lemonades, energy drinks and juices but this summer try out the natural, nutritious coconut water to get a refreshed feeling. Not only does it quench your thirst, but coconut water is rich in nutrients like iron, calcium and sodium and has twice the potassium found in one banana. It also helps in keeping a healthy digestion and prevents the body from getting dehydrated in summers and instantly provides energy.

Ice Cave in the Mutnovsky Volcano

Russia’s secret Ice Cave

I’m at a place that feels like a passageway to the world of fairytales! I am at the Ice Cave in the Mutnovsky Volcano in Russia. This place is like a dream, what with multicolored lights glowing from a translucent ceiling, rocks through which a stream is slipping and a bright light in the distance!

3 Amazing Mutnovsky Volcano Ice Cave Facts

  1. And none of this is man-made! The cave itself was carved from the glacier by an underground hot water spring flowing beneath the glacier.
  2. The walls are thus made up of highly compacted snow, which is what gives it its unique appearance.
  3. The multicolored lights are a result of the sunlight being filtered through the glaciers on the ceiling. That’s what gives the cave walls a stained glass look. Amazing isn’t it?

Who discovered Mutnovsky Volcano Ice Cave and how?

The cave is half a mile long and was discovered accidentally by a Ms. Balentsova and her local guide Denis Budkov, during an expedition in 2012 near the Kamchatka Peninsula. The Kamchatka Peninsula, in the far east of Russia, is known to be a region of exceptional natural beauty with its large symmetrical volcanoes, lakes, wild rivers and a spectacular coastline. I hear that up until 1990, the area was off limits to foreigners.

The locals here tell me that the photographer who discovered it was really lucky. Most of the time, the area is covered with snow, and the place where the cave was found is off the usual track. Thanks to the mix of an unusually hot summer, and the observant photographer and her guide, who noticed the spring underneath the glacier and followed it to the cave, we can now see the magical caves, whenever the snow melts enough to allow passage into the cave. Which, they tell me, is not very often – probably the reason why everything around here looks to be in pristine condition! Boy do I feel lucky to have seen this magical place!