Today is Saturday, Dec. 25, the 359th day of 2010. There are 6 days left in the year. This is Christmas Day.

Today is Saturday, Dec. 25, the 359th day of 2010. There are 6 days left in the year. This is Christmas Day.


Today's Highlight in History:


On Dec. 25, 1990, the World Wide Web, the system providing quick access to websites over the Internet, was born in Geneva, Switzerland, as computer scientists Tim Berners-Lee and Robert Cailliau (KAH'-yoh) created the world's first hyperlinked webpage.


On this date:


In 1066, William the Conqueror was crowned king of England.


In 1776, Gen. George Washington and his troops crossed the Delaware River for a surprise attack against Hessian forces at Trenton, N.J.


In 1818, "Silent Night," written by Franz Gruber and Father Joseph Mohr, was performed for the first time, at the Church of St. Nikolaus in Oberndorf, Austria.


In 1926, Hirohito became emperor of Japan, succeeding his father, Emperor Yoshihito. (Hirohito was formally enthroned almost two years later.)


In 1931, New York's Metropolitan Opera broadcast an entire live opera over radio for the first time: "Hansel and Gretel" by Engelbert Humperdinck.


In 1941, during World War II, Japan announced the surrender of the British-Canadian garrison at Hong Kong.


In 1989, ousted Romanian President Nicolae Ceausescu (chow-SHES'-koo) and his wife, Elena, were executed following a popular uprising. Former baseball manager Billy Martin died in a traffic accident in Fenton, N.Y.


In 1991, Soviet President Mikhail S. Gorbachev went on television to announce his resignation as the eighth and final leader of a communist superpower that had already gone out of existence.


In 1995, singer Dean Martin died at his Beverly Hills home at age 78.


In 2006, James Brown, the "Godfather of Soul," died of heart failure in Atlanta at age 73.


Ten years ago: A fire in central China killed 309 people inside an unlicensed disco.


Five years ago: Pope Benedict XVI marked his first Christmas as pontiff, calling for concrete actions to back up "signs of hope" in the Middle East and urging peace in Darfur, Sudan and the Korean peninsula. Opera singer Birgit Nilsson died in her native Sweden at age 87.


One year ago: Passengers aboard Northwest Airlines Flight 253 foiled an apparent attempt to blow up the plane as it was landing in Detroit by seizing suspect Umar Farouk Abdulmutallab (OO'-mahr fah-ROOK' ahb-DOOL'-moo-TAH'-lahb), a Nigerian accused of trying to set off explosives in his underwear. The Taliban released a video purporting to show Pfc. Bowe Bergdahl, a U.S. soldier captured more than five months earlier in eastern Afghanistan. Korean-American missionary Robert Park was arrested by border guards after crossing into North Korea; he was released in Feb. 2010.


Today's Birthdays: Singer Tony Martin is 97. Actor Dick Miller is 82. Author Anne Roiphe is 75. Actress Hanna Schygulla (SHEE'-goo-lah) is 67. Rhythm-and-blues singer John Edwards (The Spinners) is 66. Actor Gary Sandy is 65. Singer Jimmy Buffett is 64. Pro and College Football Hall-of-Famer Larry Csonka is 64. Country singer Barbara Mandrell is 62. Actress Sissy Spacek is 61. Former White House adviser Karl Rove is 60. Actress CCH Pounder is 58. Singer Annie Lennox is 56. Reggae singer-musician Robin Campbell (UB40) is 56. Country singer Steve Wariner is 56. Singer Shane MacGowan (The Pogues, The Popes) is 53. Baseball Hall of Famer Rickey Henderson is 52. The former Chair of the Council of Economic Advisers, Christina Romer, is 52. Actress Klea Scott is 42. Rock musician Noel Hogan (The Cranberries) is 39. Singer Dido is 39. Rock singer Mac Powell (Third Day) is 38. Rhythm-and-blues singer Ryan Shaw is 30. Country singer Alecia Elliott is 28. Pop singers Lisa and Jess Origliasso (The Veronicas) are 26.


Thought for Today: "Were I a philosopher, I should write a philosophy of toys, showing that nothing else in life need to be taken seriously, and that Christmas Day in the company of children is one of the few occasions on which men become entirely alive." — Robert Lynd, British essayist (1879-1949).