Danish pop/dance music band best known in the U.S. for the song "Barbie Girl," although they've had a couple of Danish and U.K. hits. "Barbie Girl" came off their first album, 1997's Aquarium, although the band's members, René Dif, Claus Norreen, Lene Grawford Nystrøm and Søren Rasted, had actually been the band "Joyspeed" who had a minor Danish hit with "Itzy Bitzy." The band decided to "reinvent themselves" as Aqua, and the new band's "Roses Are Red" spent two months (instead of one week as their old identity had) on the charts of their country.

When "Barbie Girl" was released, Mattel sued the band's label for the sexual overtones of the song being associated with their product. The original suit wanted withdrawal of all copies of "Barbie Girl" compact discs and videos from stores, despite the album's already carrying the disclaimer that the song "is a social comment and was not created or approved by the makers of the doll." Preliminary rulings were all in favor of the record label; the most recent information I can find (25 September 2000) says that Mattel was still appealing the case at that time, but nothing seems to have come of it since then.

Aqua's second album, "Aquarius" came out in 2000. It did not sell as well as the first album, and in August 2001 it was announced that the band was breaking up. Lene Nystrøm and Søren Rasted were married in 2001, and Lene has plans to do solo music, as well as René.


There appears to be a trend amongst cosmetics manufacturers these days to stop using water as the main ingredient of their products. They have started replacing this by something called “aqua”. I checked the labels on my hair gel, facial scrub, and shampoo this morning, and found no trace of water listed on any of them. They all list this “aqua” as their main ingredient instead.

I find this slightly disturbing. I mean, water used to be the main ingredient of these products, in some cases accounting for more than 95% of their bulk. We all know that water is a perfectly harmless substance (except when ingested in extremely large doses). But what do we know about this “aqua”? Virtually nothing. Has it been subjected to the same extensive clinical testing as good old water? Has it been sprayed under the eyelids of helpless little bunny rabbits to ensure that it won’t sting my eyes? What is its toxicity? Does it have any negative environmental impact?

I, for one, plan to stop washing myself until I find all the answers. I encourage you to do the same.

Apple's GUI for MacOS X.

Main aesthetic features seem to be the general "transparency" (in addition to GUI transparency effects, that is); All elements, while still roughly rectangular, have that "drop of water" look, from which the GUI undoubtedly has got its name. General "colored glass" feeling, I guess.

Apple has been rather vigorous when trying to protect the look and feel of this GUI; Some people who have made Aqua-like GUI themes for different platforms (for example, on Linux for different X11 window managers and widget sets like Enlightenment, GTK+ and others) have got into trouble with Apple and had their works removed from public view.

(However, Microsoft got away with it...)

A"qua (#), n. [L. See Ewer.]

Water; -- a word much used in pharmacy and the old chemistry, in various signification, determined by the word or words annexed.

Aqua ammoniae, the aqueous solution of ammonia; liquid ammonia; often called aqua ammonia. -- Aqua marine (#), or Aqua marina (#). Same as Aquamarine. -- Aqua regia (#). [L., royal water] Chem., a very corrosive fuming yellow liquid consisting of nitric and hydrochloric acids. It has the power of dissolving gold, the "royal" metal. -- Aqua Tofana (#), a fluid containing arsenic, and used for secret poisoning, made by an Italian woman named Tofana, in the middle of the 17th century, who is said to have poisoned more than 600 persons. Francis. -- Aqua vitae (#) [L., water of life. Cf. Eau de vie, Usquebaugh], a name given to brandy and some other ardent spirits.



© Webster 1913.

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