Answers.com as a source – for an entire book!

Many of you have used Answers.com for writing research papers, settling heated trivia battles or just plain browsing. But what about using Answers.com to write an entire book?

Harold Kirsh, a retired physician and longtime user of Answers.com, recently did just that. To write Thank You America, Kirsh referenced our “encyclo-diction-almanac-apedia” heavily using 1-Click Answers.

Thank You America, a reader-friendly overview of American history, follows the travels of Dr. Kirsh and his wife (more than 14,000 miles total!) as they visit every American president’s birthplace, burial site, and over one hundred associated museums and memorials. Among the highlights of their journey were: sitting in John Adams’ pew in his church, touring Truman’s library with Harry Truman himself, meeting the man who made FDR’s leg braces, and spending a day poring over scrapbooks with Eddie Jacobson’s 16-year-old daughter.

The result is a proud, heartfelt American journey, packed with historical gems and anecdotes.

“Almost all my Internet searches were performed by utilizing Answers.com,” Dr. Kirsh said. “When I began writing the book I found out how useful a function it was since I could easily improve my writing while on the word processor.” 1-Click Answers allowed him to define words, check spelling, find synonyms and reference American history articles.

Answers.com is very proud to be mentioned in the acknowledgements of Thank You America! For more information on Dr. Kirsh and his book, visit haroldkirsh.com.

Have you used Answers.com as a source recently? Let us know about it in the comments.

Adamlance – Stamps, Alternates and Rockin’ Facebook Updates!

What do old stamps, alternates on Answers.com and awesome Facebook status updates have to do with each other? Baffled? Well, I can tell you that they are all connected to this week’s Featured Contributor, Adamlance. In his interview Adam shared with us that he used to collect stamps and has a massive collection contained in more than 40 albums; he loves looking at alternates of a question, finding incorrectly merged questions, and splitting them; and is an avid Facebook user (to which I can testify – he has GREAT updates!). Don’t forget to stop by his message board and say, “Hi!” Here’s a bit more about this awesome contributor…

What is your Answers.com user name and the history behind it?

Adamlance. It is my first name and middle name.

What is your age?

46

Would you like to tell us about your family?

I live with my partner, Ryan, who is the love of my life. We have no children. In November, we are getting married in Canada, on our 15th anniversary together. Next year, on our 16th anniversary, we will have a full wedding in Las Vegas with our family and friends. It will be the first same-sex wedding ever held in our synagogue, and we have received nothing but support and encouragement from everyone.

Do you have any pets?

No. I’m allergic, plus we like to travel spontaneously, so it’s nice to be able to walk away from the house whenever we want (we don’t even have any plants)!

Where do you live, how long have you lived there and why do you like the area?

I live in Las Vegas. I have lived here since I was 9 years old. I love it here because there is so much to do. The only drawback is the heat. My dream is to have a summer house in a cooler place.

Where did you grow up and do you have any special memories of your childhood?

I grew up in Las Vegas since age 9. Before that, I lived in New York and New Jersey, but those are distant memories.

What educational information would you like to share?

I went to the University of Southern California and I graduated with a BA in Linguistics, in 1988. After that, I lived in Israel for a year, studying Hebrew and Arabic at a language school. I also lived with my cousins. I returned to Las Vegas after that, attempting to get a second bachelor’s degree, but my job overtook my time, and I didn’t finish.

What are some of your past or present occupations?

I worked for Citigroup for 16 years. I started there embossing credit cards. I later worked in the call center, then in billing dispute investigations, and finally as a project analyst. I was laid off in 2008. I currently have a part-time job as editor of my synagogue’s newsletter, and my partner and I have a budding photography business that is just now starting to take off.

What are your key areas of knowledge, interest or expertise?

My area of knowledge and expertise is Judaism and Hebrew. I can’t recall how I became interested in these areas. Hebrew has been a particular passion of mine since my college days when I was able to take conversational classes for the first time. The language has always fascinated me. It is the only language in the history of humanity that became a dead language and then was resurrected almost two millennia later, becoming the official language of a country.

Do you have any collections or hobbies?

I used to collect stamps. I have a massive collection, contained in more than 40 albums. My collection includes two penny blacks from 1840 (the first stamp ever issued), as well as the first U.S. stamp issued in 1847. I also have a small coin collection.

What do you like to do for recreation?

My partner and I love to eat out and go to movies. We also enjoy visiting friends. We are very active in our synagogue and we do a lot of volunteer work as well.

What are a few random facts about yourself?

I researched my family tree when I was in college, and discovered family living all over the world, whom I’m still in touch with. I’m an avid Facebook user. I love to travel.

Do you have any special talents you’d like to share?

I’m intelligent, but I’m actually one of the least talented people on the planet!

What accomplishments are you proud of?

I had a very successful career at Citigroup. I am debt free. I paid off all credit cards and loans by 2000, and I paid off our house in 2008. I have a low-drama life, which I love!

What are your special goals or dreams?

I dream of traveling the world…even more than I already have. I hope our photography business takes off. I’d like to have a child, but the clock is ticking on that!

How would you describe yourself or personality?

I am quiet and shy, but also very friendly in small groups. I’m sometimes short-tempered, sometimes angry, but usually happy.

What brought you to Answers.com?

I joined in November 2010, but I can’t remember how it started. I think I may have asked a question, and then noticed some unanswered questions that needed attention.

What keeps you coming back to Answers.com?

I’m an opinionated know-it-all. LOL.

Cornerback24 – Are You Ready for Some WikiBall?!

With the NFL season in full swing, it only seems appropriate to spotlight a contributor who “plays defense for Answers.com” – Cornerback24. Now, if you’re a diehard NFL fan, have a favorite team and are NOT from Colorado, you might want to advance your cursor. You see, Cornerback24 IS a Denver Broncos fanatic and DOES like Champ Bailey (number 24) best of all. Wait…that had to have been second best because we all know the MVP and fan favorite around these parts – Orange Guy! Put away the TV remote, set down the nachos and cheese and get ready for some WikiBall!

What is your Answers.com user name and the history behind it?

My user name is Cornerback24. I choose this because I am a fan of the Denver Broncos and Champ Bailey is my favorite player (which is where the number 24 comes from. Cornerback is also my favorite position to play in flag football (and ultimate Frisbee, if the position was called cornerback).

Do you have any pets?

No, although I have a few playful stuffed animals.

What educational information would you like to share?

I am still in school, and will probably get a degree in Computer Science.

What are your key areas of knowledge, interest or expertise?

Math and Science. Most of what I know about these subjects I learned in school.

Do you have any collections or hobbies?

I like to read, write music, and program computers.

What do you like to do for recreation?

I like to play teams sports (especially flag football and ultimate Frisbee).

What are a few random facts about yourself?

I love math. I knew the square root of square numbers up to 100 in kindergarten. (I think that’s pretty good, considering we didn’t learn how to multiply until third grade. What were we learning in the mean time?)

Do you have any special talents you’d like to share?

I can play the piano and the viola (as well as a little guitar, violin, cello and recorder. I can at least pick these up and sound like I know what I am doing). This helps when writing music.

What are your special goals or dreams?

That has always been a hard question: “What are your goals?”. I think I’ll know better as life goes on. Right now it’s pretty broad (such as getting a career, probably as a computer programmer).

How would you describe yourself or personality?

I am quiet; not outgoing. I spend much more time listening than talking (partly because I find it hard to think of things to say).

What brought you to Answers.com?

I stumbled upon the site; I don’t remember why. I saw an organized place where people could ask and answers questions about anything, and decided to contribute. (Now there is a place where knowing random facts isn’t as pointless as it was before.)

What keeps you coming back to Answers.com?

Answers.com is a place where I can help people find out what they want or need to know. It is fun sharing information with people who want it, as well as helping to maintain a large-scale database of questions and answers.

What is your favorite Answers.com activity?

Playing defense! It is fun to help maintain the site by removing nonsense answers and such. I also like answering questions, though.

AnswerThon Xtreme 2011: The Answers.com Event of the Year!

Answers.com will host the 2011 AnswerThon Xtreme for FOUR days starting next week! Don’t miss this Xtremely Xciting Event!

The goal is to answer as many questions as possible in three sentences or more.  Participants with the best answers, both accurate and grammatically correct, will qualify to win one of the many prizes. In order for your answers to be counted and to be eligible for prizes, you must read the rules and sign up to participate at answerthon.com.

When: Friday, September 23, 2011 through Monday, September 26, 2011*

Where: Answers.com

Who: All registered Answers.com community members: supervisors and contributors. (A previous two-time consecutive AnswerThon or AnswerHours 1st place winner must sit out for the next two consecutive AnswerThon or AnswerHours contests, thus giving other contestants an opportunity to win the 1st place slot.)

Prizes:

  • One FIRST PLACE winner: $500 Amazon.com gift card
  • Two SECOND PLACE winners (one super / one contributor):  $400 Amazon.com gift card
  • Two THIRD PLACE winners (one super / one contributor):  $250 Amazon.com gift card
  • Four FOURTH PLACE winners (two supers / two contributors) : $50 Amazon.com gift card
  • Twenty Runners Up: Answers.com souvenirs

For questions contact: answerthon@answers.com

*Event begins at 12:00 am ET on Sept 23th and ends at 12:00 pm ET on September 26th.  The UK is typically 5 hours ahead of Eastern Time. If you are unsure about the start/end times you can convert Eastern Time to your time zone.

Clark Kent vs. Wiki Kent – The Ultimate Showdown

For this week’s Contributor Corner post, we’re comparing two remarkable individuals – Clark Kent (also known as Superman) and Wiki Kent (also known as Kentwagoner). Let’s start with the obvious differences. First, Clark Kent is clearly a fictional character, Wiki Kent is not. As far as we can tell Wiki Kent is human (but bots have been known to fool us before). Clark Kent, on the other hand, is far from human; he’s Kryptonian and hails from Krypton. Another key difference, one is vulnerable to magic, ahem, Clark, while the other creates magic (just look at those answers!). And finally, Clark wears a costume underneath his street clothes. To be honest, we sure hope Wiki Kent doesn’t. Now onto the similarities. Both know a thing or two about farms and agriculture and have worked as farmhands. Both have cool team affiliations – Clark Kent, the Justice League and Wiki Kent, the Answers.com Supervisors. And finally – and perhaps the most important comparison of all – they’re both SUPERMEN! Seriously! Clark Kent has superhuman abilities and saves people from the evil grips of villains. Wiki Kent has superwiki abilities and saves people from the evil grips of bad spelling and grammar. Thanks to you both for your righteous, mindful ways – but we’re clearly biased and rooting for Team Wiki Kent! Here’s more…

What is your Answers.com user name and the history behind it?

Kentwagoner is my username, which I picked because it’s easy for me to remember — after all, it’s my real name! I picked it before I had seen about the policy against it.

What is your age?

55

Do you have any pets?

Two dogs, Sadie and Taz, and two cats, Gizmo and Scrappy.

Where do you live, how long have you lived there and why do you like the area?

We’ve lived in southwest Idaho for 31 years, mainly because of my employment with a university agriculture research center.

Where did you grow up and do you have any special memories of your childhood?

Although I grew up in Iowa, most of my special memories involve family vacations in Colorado.

What are some of your past or present occupations?

Although I spent some time in the pharmaceutical, furniture-making, and seed-production industries, my lifelong interest has always been farming.

What are your key area(s) of knowledge, interest or expertise?

My primary interest is agriculture. I grew up on a farm, and have been involved in some way or another in agriculture most of my life. Although I have some university education in the area, the most useful knowledge has always come from working directly with the crops.

Do you have any collections or hobbies?

I’m part of a Southern Gospel quartet. See the website on my profile page for more info. I also have a love of antique tractors, though I can’t really afford to be a collector.

What do you like to do for recreation?

Facebook, agricultural television shows (RFD-TV), Answers.com

What accomplishments are you proud of?

I have initiated a local program which combines an antique tractor ride activity with fundraising for both breast cancer research (my wife is a survivor) and worldwide hunger relief efforts such as Heifer International and Farmers Feeding the World (see http://www.agweb.com/farmersfeedingtheworld/).

What are your special goals or dreams?

To see and get to know the grandchildren I hope to have someday.

How would you describe yourself or personality?

Quiet, likable, always have a smile for everybody (or at least I try to).

What brought you to Answers.com?

The H1N1 outbreak, which was originally incorrectly called Swine Flu. Came here to start correcting some misinformation.

Are you a Floating or Category Supervisor (which categories)?

Category Supervisor for Farm Crops, but I also “float” in Agriculture, Grains, Corn, Wheat, and rarely Tractors and Farm Equipment.

What is your favorite Answers.com activity?

Answering questions! But I also enjoy helping to provide people with the information they seek regarding the production of their food supply. I only wish I could take the message of America’s agricultural bounty to the entire nation, if not the entire world!