Geography 200
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La Tomatina 2012

La Tomatina 2012 | Geography 200 |
La Tomatina is a festival that is held in the Valencian town of Bunol, located inland from the Mediterranean Sea, that brings together thousands of people for one big tomato fight – purely for fun!


La Tomatina is a cultural festival in Spain that is world renowned for it's exuberance and playfulness.  This gallery of 26 images shows some of the dynamism and appeal to this extraordinary event where more than 40,000 people engage in the world's largest foof fight using upwards of 100 tons of tomatoes in the yearly food fight known as 'La Tomatina.'


Notice the signs for storing backpacks and luggage that are now pastered with tomatoes on the store in the background of the image.  These hastily-composed, informal signs are written in three languages (Spanish, English and Japanese).  What does this tell us about the festival?  Also, notice how the comments section revolves around the concepts of waste, poverty and consumption. 


Tags: Europe, food, tourism, seasonal, culture, unit 3 culture, consumption.

Via Seth Dixon
Lauren Stahowiak's insight:

Spaghetti anyone? La Tomatina is a large tomatoe fight held in Bunol. It is a cultural festival in Spain purely for fun. Thousands meet in the streets to throw tomatoes and through the pictures shown, one can only imagine how many tomatoes get thrown at this festival. The streets are flooded red!

Mark V's comment, September 12, 2012 2:46 PM
La Tomatina, the Spanish food fight seems like much ado about nothing. Issues of waste and absurdity are mitigated by the fact that tomatoes are cheap and abundant. Dangers, most likely of the slip and fall variety are incurred by the participants as part of the “fun”, and unless you believe that tomatoes have feelings it appears that no one really gets hurt. The bigger issue seems to be the cultural cache it has -40,000 revelers coming from as far away as East Asia for what amounts to a large food fight. I would say that what it says most about us as a society is that we need to both; blow off a little steam, and to feel like a part of something larger then ourselves.
Don Brown Jr's comment, September 12, 2012 3:03 PM

I find myself caught between respecting the practices of other cultures as I can’t not help but acknowledge that this is still very extravagant and wasteful although we in America are no better. This use of food can be seen globally as just another example of the widening depravation as undeveloped countries may view food solely for consumption while developed countries grow food for commerce with the notion that once you pay for it, it does not matter how you use it.
Nicholas Rose's comment, September 13, 2012 9:59 AM
This article is very interesting to say the least. The reason why is because culturally even this is the largest food fight in the world involving only tomatoes but it has been a critical cultural tradition in Spain for many years and will still become a tradition to Spain.

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WA Government’s bid to extend shark-kill policy to be assessed by EPA

WA Government’s bid to extend shark-kill policy to be assessed by EPA | Geography 200 |
PUBLIC comment is to be invited on the WA Government’s bid to extend its controversial shark catch-and-kill policy for a further three years.
Lauren Stahowiak's insight:

Western Australian Government discuss shark-kill policy

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Coral Reefs Most at Risk

Coral Reefs Most at Risk | Geography 200 |
A new map ranks the world's coral reefs by the risks they face from warming oceans, overfishing and other stress factors, which will help scientists focus on conserving the reefs with the most likely success.

Via Seth Dixon
Lauren Stahowiak's insight:

Coral Reefs all along the equator are at great risks due to geographical urbanization. This area has become warmer due to global warming which is not healthy for the fish, the sea is over-fished and damaged by humans. Coral reefs are so beautiful and we must take the actions to help save them!

Seth Dixon's comment, October 14, 2011 2:49 PM
It would speak very poorly of the human race if in our stewardship of planet Earth we kill off Coral reefs.
Jacob Crowell's curator insight, December 15, 2014 4:42 PM

Coral reefs our one of the most beautiful examples of nature that exist. I hope this map will help preserve them, what is interesting for someone my age is that I am not sure whether I will get to see these reefs before they are wiped out by climate change.

Wilmine Merlain's curator insight, December 17, 2014 9:00 PM

With this know fact of Coral Reefs at risk for disappearing, what are we to do. I believe in order to preserve our coral reefs around the world, more education on the importance of having the coral reefs on our coast. While there is little things we can do in regards to the rise of temperatures, we can reduce our human activity on the coast such as fishing and coastal development.

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The White Shark Kayak Story

The White Shark Kayak Story | Geography 200 |

"The photograph is real, no photoshop, no digital manipulation, no nothing, in fact it was shot on slide film Fuji Provia 100 using a Nikon F5 Camera and 17-35 mm lens. For those conspiracy fans who still doubt its authenticity please read how I took the photograph."  --The true story by Thomas P. Peschak

Via Seth Dixon
Lauren Stahowiak's insight:

Scary, but AMAZING! Something about ocean life intrigues me. It is amazing and overwhelming how close sharks and other sea life will come and even more amazing how photographs like this can be so beautiful and be such a keepsake. It is no wonder why many assume this photograph is photo-shopped, it is so pure and unimaginable!

Hector Alonzo's curator insight, December 16, 2014 10:54 AM

At first glance, This photo does look fake, but there are many places in ghw world that have beautiful landscapes and waters. This photo also shows how sone countries in the world lcoexist with the wildlife, that are native to it. It would be a bit terrifying to kayak and turn to see a great white shark behind you, but apparently makes for an amazing picture

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Lurking in the Deep

Lurking in the Deep | Geography 200 |
Divers on Australia's Great Barrier Reef recently snapped rare pictures of a wobbegong, or carpet shark, swallowing a bamboo shark whole.


The diversity of life on this planet and the ecosystems which such creatures live in is something that continually leaves me in awe at the wonders of the natural world.

Via Seth Dixon
Lauren Stahowiak's insight:

A wobbegong, also known as the carpet shark, engulfs a bamboo shark in the Great Barrier Reef. This was a surprising and rare photo for Divers in Australia. It is crazy how animals so close in relativity can instantly become predators, and possibly a meal, to each other!

Gregory S Sankey Jr.'s curator insight, September 1, 2014 10:38 AM

This article reminds me of another video i've seen recently of a grouper fish swallowing a 4-foot black tip shark whole. A fisherman caught that on camera while trying to reel in the shark. Time and time again I'm reminded that not everything in nature is as it seems and that the unexpected should be expected. 

This makes me want to buy some scuba gear and take some diving classes, I ought to conquer my fear of sharks by safely observing them with a research team! 

Jacob Crowell's curator insight, December 15, 2014 4:36 PM

Amazing photos, there are so many different kinds of life that exists in the Ocean. As the Great Barrier Reef falls victim to climate change and pollution, the number of species at risk is almost calculable. 

Hector Alonzo's curator insight, December 16, 2014 1:26 PM

Australia's marine life is amazing, being able to hide by blending in to their environment is a testament to the waters that Australia has. The diverse wildlife of Australia waters is shown to be an adaptive bunch and begs the question: How many more animals are out there that we do not know of?

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Pink Lakes

Pink Lakes | Geography 200 |
Photo by Jean Paul Ferrero/Ardea/Caters News (via Exposing the Truth   Lake Hillier is a pink-coloured lake on Middle Island in Western Australia. Middle island is the largest of the islands a...

Via Seth Dixon
Lauren Stahowiak's insight:

Lake Hillier is located in Australia. It is a pink colored lake that remains a mystery for its location. While some lakes have pink hues due to the salinity levels, this lakes reasoning is still under investigation.

Jess Deady's curator insight, May 1, 2014 10:44 AM

The cause of the pink lake is still a mystery. Scientists believe the pink could be due to lack of nutrients or other substances. I think this is truly remarkable! Its beautiful to say the least. 

Hector Alonzo's curator insight, December 15, 2014 11:44 PM

The pink lake, Lake Hillier,  located in Western Australia is stunning. The aerial view of the lake makes the lake seem unreal that is was is fascinating. What gives the lake its pink color is a mystery, but it may be from bacteria, but it shows how some places in the world are affected differently than others and it produces remarkable results.

Nicole Kearsch's curator insight, December 17, 2014 1:48 AM

Now this is bizarre.  A pink lake and no one is really sure as to why it is pink.  It is not on the top of my list of places to go swimming, that is for sure.  Although scientists don't seem too concerned about the safety of the lake for people but are curious as to what is causing the lake to be pink.  Thoughts on algea and bacteria levels or the amount of salt are included in the potential reasoning for the pink color.  Even on google earth you can see that the lake is in fact pink.  Even when scientists come to a conclusion as to what is causing the pink colored lake, as far as it isn't causing any environmental issues, I think that the lake should be left pink as a type of wonder of the world attraction for people to see.

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Theories on how a South Korean passenger ferry suddenly sank

Theories on how a South Korean passenger ferry suddenly sank | Geography 200 |
A dominant theory has begun to emerge about how a passenger ferry carrying of hundreds sank near South Korea.
Lauren Stahowiak's insight:

How did the South Korean ferry sink? There is linkage to the boat either striking something in the water or an engine failure, however, details have not yet been concluded. As passengers jump into the cold waters they desperately wait to be saved.

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Video: Fighting Poverty with Ingenuity

I absolutely love creative, out-of-the-box, innovative people! People who use their creativity to make a difference in the World.... Incredible! "We want to ...


Via Seth Dixon
Lauren Stahowiak's insight:

Turning trash into treasure is the simplest way to describe this phenomenon.  Soda bottles are easily turned into light bulbs in areas that do not receive much natural light. This alternative to electricity is perfect for an area of low income. They are able to get more done and keep costs down low while getting rid of water bottles at the same time.

Hector Alonzo's curator insight, December 15, 2014 9:29 PM

It is people like the man in this video that help many people and their families fight off poverty , if even by a little. He says that his electric bill has gone down significantly since he installed the water bottle bulb. While we think nothing of the empty soda bottles we throw away, we never realize that it could brighten up a families house and allow them to save  some money to perhaps buy themselves or their children clothes or shoes, or more importantly food to eat. This is a truly genius way of help out your community and give the world ideas on how to reduce using large amount of electricity.

Samuel D'Amore's curator insight, December 17, 2014 4:31 PM

This another fantastic example of people in areas of little and poverty making due with that they have on hand. While many in America can imagine life without our modern necessities in fact both historically and contemporary people have always determined ways to get the fullest extent out of the materials at hand. This video shows how innovation and some common good is able to help the whole community. We in the Western World can definitely learn a few things from situations such as this.   

Jacob Crowell's curator insight, December 17, 2014 10:49 PM

Poverty stricken areas are filled with very intelligent and skilled people who are trapped in their economic status. These solar bottles show how creative people can be no matter where they come from. Furthermore, these types of innovations show how the sadness of living in poverty can be lifted a small amount with recycling and creativity.

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Photos of Southeast Asia

Photos of Southeast Asia | Geography 200 |

This is an incredibly photo gallery of Vietnam (pictured) and Cambodia.  The photographer, Michael Poliza, has many other place and nature-based galleries at: ;

Via Seth Dixon
Lauren Stahowiak's insight:

Absolutely breath taking! From the pictures from the skyline, it is hard to tell that it is inhabited due to its high elevations, but closer pictures of the land and buildings compare to other places in the world, but hold their own importance. 

Cam E's curator insight, April 8, 2014 12:47 PM

Another day, another photo gallery. This time we have a stunning array of pictures from Southeast Asia, mainly from Vietnam and Cambodia. Many of these pictures showcase the importance of the sea to life in those regions, as well as the history, which is deeply involved with Buddhism, that is often glossed over in western history books.


Joseph Thacker 's curator insight, April 18, 2014 5:56 PM

By viewing these pictures of areas throughout Cambodia and Vietnam, one can grasp aspects of their culture. From the Buddha statues, historic sites and beautiful natural landscapes. This photographer does a great job of capturing important areas within Southeast Asia. These great pictures encourage people to visit these overlooked areas of the world. 

Jess Deady's curator insight, May 4, 2014 9:59 PM

If I had a helicopter I would certainly be taking it out to see stuff like this. Vietnam is very natural looking. Its lands are filled with awesome demography and topography. What a beautiful sight to see.

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Water and Development

Australia's engagement with Asia: Water - a case study on Flores

Via Seth Dixon
Lauren Stahowiak's insight:

In Indonesia, many areas lack clean water. This makes it hard to keep residents healthy. World Vision Australia works with Indonesian towns to set up pipelines to the clean water sources to transport it to the areas of dirty water. This helps the villages work together and benefit off having clean water to drink and uncontaminated food. This improves life in Indonesia and they are very thankful for it.

Jye Watson's curator insight, June 23, 2013 10:29 PM

year 7 water

Joseph Thacker 's curator insight, April 18, 2014 8:38 PM

The children of this village were once sick and could not regularly wash their hands due to the fact water was hard to find, and if it was found the quality was poor. World Vision helped by building a pipeline, which brings clean drinking water to this village. They can now bathe regularly and drink clean water.

Having this clean water also benefits the community from an economic standpoint. The abundance of clean water now attracts educators to their village and it also helps with creation of bricks. These bricks can be sold and can be used for their home improvement projects. 

Elizabeth Bitgood's curator insight, April 24, 2014 2:29 PM

This video shows a positive side to globalization.  The Australian organization that worked with the people in these rural villages to get them access to clean water.  The quality of life when up hugely when the people could access water in their homes.  The hours needed to trek to the wells was eliminated and the water have created jobs and better quality of life for the villages.

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How Vietnam became a coffee giant

How Vietnam became a coffee giant | Geography 200 |

"Think of coffee and you will probably think of Brazil, Colombia, or maybe Ethiopia. But the world's second largest exporter today is Vietnam. How did its market share jump from 0.1% to 20% in just 30 years, and how has this rapid change affected the country?"


Via Seth Dixon
Lauren Stahowiak's insight:

Vietnam uses coffee production to get ahead in the economy. This is a great way of using the land globalize and compete with countries such as Brazil. This coffee production gives more people jobs and helps improve the lives of others.

Nicole Kearsch's curator insight, December 8, 2014 1:31 PM

Coffee has very much helped but also hurt Vietnam.  After the war Vietnam was a very poor country but with the introduction of coffee growing into the economy the number of poor people has greatly declined.  Although in Vietnam tea is the beverage of choice, coffee is grown as an export crop.  Not only is money coming in from the growth and exportation of the coffee bean but also from companies that have places in Vietnam to create coffee from start to finish, from bean to bag.  Unfortunately due to more coffee plantations being needed deforestation has happened at an alarming rate, making room for more places to grow coffee.  Also unexploded mines are still thought to be scattered throughout the country making the fields an extremely dangerous place to work.  The environment isn't being helped by the farmers either.  These farmers of coffee have no idea how to properly grow coffee and just throw a bunch of fertilizer and water on the plants and hope it grows.  This is a problem when there are better techniques that could be used to grow coffee that are better for the environment.  These people need to be taught how to constructively grow coffee so it doesn't have such a negative effect on the environment.

Kaitlin Young's curator insight, December 12, 2014 1:30 PM

Coffee is often synonymous with Colombia and Brazil, but Vietnam exports the second largest amount of coffee in the world. Despite the amount of coffee produced, the Vietnamese still mostly drink tea, leaving the coffee to be exported. In the age of colonialism, the French brought coffee to Vietnam, and they have grown it ever since, but a gamble in the industry after the Vietnam War provided the country with a large industry. The Coffee Industry has allowed many people to make money, though few have become rich from the industry. Even though coffee has helped decrease poverty levels, the environmental impacts are beginning to overshadow the industry. The development of land for agriculture is changing the landscape, and the desire to expand this industry could decimate the amount of uncultivated lands. 

Hector Alonzo's curator insight, December 15, 2014 10:37 PM

After the war, Vietnam was left a poor country, but with the introduction of Coffee things have been looking up for Vietnam. While the selling of coffee is bringing in extra income and has resulted in a decline in poverty, the poverty rate has gone from 60% to an astounding 10% since the selling of coffee, the article says that only a few have become very rich. While selling coffee is bringing in extra revenue, it has resulted in the deforestation of areas in order to make the coffee which is not going to be good in the long run.

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11 extremely practical Japan travel tips

11 extremely practical Japan travel tips | Geography 200 |
Japan isn't a country to which you just show up and wing it. Here's how to arrive prepared.
Lauren Stahowiak's insight:

Tips when traveling to Japan!

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Shanghai: 1990 vs. 2010

Shanghai: 1990 vs. 2010 | Geography 200 |

Globalization has hit...hard and fast. 

Via Seth Dixon
Lauren Stahowiak's insight:

Shanghai has transformed and globalized so quickly in the last twenty years that it doesn't even look like that same place. Skies that were once seen are now blocked by skyscrapers. Buildings that still remain are overpowered and do not stand out like they once did.

Cam E's curator insight, April 8, 2014 11:23 AM

Apart from what can be said about the process of Globalization, this is just impressive under the lens of what can be done in 20 years to change the skylines and landscapes of an area. Notice the lack of vegetation in the second picture, and while it may just be an effect of the different time of day or season, they sky seems a lot more fogged in the second picture, possibly due to pollution.

James Hobson's curator insight, November 21, 2014 7:02 PM

(East Asia topic 1)

Present-day Shanghai appears as if it could pass as New York city to the untrained eye. These photos show how globalization affects a city physically, but other aspects are impacted by globalization as well. Many megacities find themselves growing away from their origins: ways of life, employment opportunities, languages & dialects, ethnic background, and cultural traditions all find themselves fending off the incoming competition. However, there is a bright side: in many cases that which is lost from or changed in on place can find itself thriving in another - the same mechanism which brought about the original change in the first place. One could argue that 'Chinatowns' and 'Little Italy's are common examples, just as Western traits are transforming Eastern cities.

Jacob Crowell's curator insight, December 15, 2014 1:25 PM

100 years ago this type of development would have taken generations to complete. In the post industrial age we can see that in a mere 20 years a city can be completely transformed.

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China now eats twice the meat we do

China now eats twice the meat we do | Geography 200 |
We can learn a lot from examining the way China's diet has changed in the last 20 years -- as well as its required efficiencies and the agriculture that supports it.


The United States still consumes more meat per capita than China, but as China's economy has grown (along with it's income and standard of living), the consumer habits have changed as well.  What will the impacts of the rise in Chinese meat consumption mean?   How do they get all this meat?

Via Seth Dixon
Lauren Stahowiak's insight:

China now eats twice as much meat than America. However, this chart does not touch upon "per-capita" which plays a major role in where the food is being dispersed and consumed. 

Crissy Borton's curator insight, December 11, 2012 11:15 PM

I wonder if this will bring on a meat shortage. At the least it is helping to full "factory" farmer and the feeding on cheep corn to cows. I wonder how much this will effect global warming.

Brett Sinica's curator insight, November 29, 2013 2:07 PM

This is actuallty very believable considering the population growth that China has experienced.  It only makes sense that the more people there are, the more meat will be consumed.  It is part of their cuisine to include meat.  Pork and chicken are among many of the popular proteins which are found on their dishes.  There is also the expansion to go along with all of the growth.  The landscape of the eastern part of the country has become more agriculturally accomodating for crops and livestock alike.  Therefore to match the trend of growing population, is the need to match it with meat and other foods.

Jacob Crowell's curator insight, December 15, 2014 1:55 PM

China's meat demand is being met by importing meat. As the standard of living rises more of China's population are looking to branch out in regards to their diet, what is interesting is that this is also an example of cultures blending. Food is a great indicator of cultural diffusion. As China becomes more globalized we are seeing their diet and consumption patterns becoming less local and tradition.

Rescooped by Lauren Stahowiak from Geography Education!

Vanuatu: Meet The Natives

"Five men from the remote Pacific island of Tanna arrive in America to experience western culture for the first time, and force us to look at ourselves through brand new eyes..."


This cross-cultural experiment reinforces numerous stereotypes, but also seeks to get viewers to look at issues from a variety of perspectives.  Folk cultures, modernization and globalization are all major themes of this show.     

Via Seth Dixon
Lauren Stahowiak's insight:

It is amazing to see travels of Pacific Islanders to America and their brief takes on their journey. Usually it is the other way around with the Americans telling the stories. These pacific islanders are greeted by their friends upon their arrival home and talk about how they met so many great people.

Jennifer Lopez's curator insight, December 15, 2014 11:26 PM

This is great I also viewed a little of the other videosprovided. I believe this can be a mix of pop culture and Folk cultur mix together if that makes any sense. For example this is coming from a point of view of Folk people that live in rural areas. We as people living in the USA see different vidos of citizens going to these areas and experiencing  a once in a  life time momment. But its amazing to see how they view our Urban area our pop culture gives you a different prospective in your life, a snse to look at things a bit different for once.  

Samuel D'Amore's curator insight, December 17, 2014 4:24 PM

The beauty of this video is not that it shows a group of people coming from a remote area but instead provides a outside view of western culture. These men come from a life so different culturally and materially form our own that their unbiased view is fascinating to see. This mixing of cultures is almost a kin to when young Amish leave their communities to see the world and then decided to remain or return to their homes. While the show may focus on the differences between those in the USA and those living in their village I'm sure many innate human qualities remain the same between both groups. 

Wilmine Merlain's curator insight, December 17, 2014 7:36 PM

I always find it amazing when people who are from different parts of the world visit America for the first time and experience the things that people here experience on a day to day basis. With their visit here, their misconception about seeing America as the land flowing with milk and honey is usually thrown out the window one they start facing hardship and difficulty. With these video these people from Australia, get a first site of how New Yorkers live their life. One thing that struct me was how they regarded poverty and homelessness here. As the world's most powerful country, USA has yet to combat and overcome its poverty issue. Those who were visiting, regarded homelessness as people who are unloved. Its sad because as a community, we are responsible for those who are less fortune, yet people in our very backyard are dying of hunger on a day to day basis. 

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New Zealand oil spill

New Zealand oil spill | Geography 200 |
View New Zealand oil spill pictures on Yahoo! News. See New Zealand oil spill photos and find more pictures in our photo galleries.


There are many geographic applications in this…Environment, globalization, economies of scale, etc.

Via Seth Dixon
Lauren Stahowiak's insight:

This gallery of photos show the cargo tumbling into the waters of New Zealand causing the oil spill. It is crazy to see each cargo container tip and a ship of such great mass go down. 

Louis Culotta's comment, January 25, 2013 1:20 PM
I was reading that in the last few weeks they have had all time record high temps either side of 100 over the last few weeks when a hot day would normally be in the low 80's due to the very cold oceans that surround the two main islands.
Joseph Thacker 's curator insight, April 26, 2014 2:28 PM

These images of the New Zealand oil spill are sad to see. It seems oil spills are occurring more and more throughout the world. Large ships holding oil should be inspected closely before going out to sea to prevent accidents such as this one from occurring. 

Market Talk's comment, September 16, 2014 1:47 AM
Kea Petroleum PLC(kea) MEO Australia expected to spud and re-enter Puka-3 in late September
MEO Australia Limited has executed a contract with Drill Force New Zealand Ltd for the re-drilling of Puka-3.
Drilling of Puka-3 has been followed by a significant amount of analysis by both Kea and MEO of the logging information gained from the well. The drilling of the well has validated the geological model for predicting the location of thicker sands.
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Great Places

Great Places | Geography 200 |

Hawaii, Kauai Island...where they shot the Jurassic Park...


Sometimes we all want to see a fabulously gorgeous physical landscape and marvel at the beauty that is in this world.  For some other spectacular images, here is a great collection of images (without much geographic specificity though).

Via Seth Dixon
Lauren Stahowiak's insight:

Here is a collection of imagines that encapsulate different landscapes and provokes different emotions. It is always nice to see pictures from places other than where you come from; the marvels of the world. 

Jess Deady's curator insight, May 1, 2014 10:41 AM

All these scoops are full of beautiful landscapes and places for tourists to visit. With Jurassic Park being such a big part of social culture and history, these landscapes are definitely worth venturing to. Hawaii is one of the biggest tourist and vacation spots in general. For all those who are able to travel there, they should invest in taking a trip to Kauai as well.

Hector Alonzo's curator insight, December 15, 2014 11:49 PM

These landscapes are amazing, seeing how different many of these place are and yet all beautiful, shows how the physical landscapes of the world are so diverse.

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Six-Legged Giant Finds Secret Hideaway, Hides For 80 Years

Six-Legged Giant Finds Secret Hideaway, Hides For 80 Years | Geography 200 |
The insect is so large — as big as a human hand — it's been dubbed a "tree lobster." It was thought to be extinct, but some enterprising entomologists scoured a barren hunk of rock in the middle of the ocean and found surviving Lord Howe Island...


Island Biogeography is endlessly fascinating and provides some of the most striking species we have on Earth.  The physical habitat is fragmented and the genetic diversity is limited.  Within this context, species evolve to fill ecological niches within their particular locale.  This NPR article demonstrates the story of but one of these incredible species that never could have evolved on the continents.  In modern society, more extinctions are happening on islands than anywhere else as 'specialist' species are in greater competition with 'generalists.' 

Via Seth Dixon
Lauren Stahowiak's insight:

Lord Howe Island is remnants of volcanic matter. On this "Island" is a creature that is known as the "tree lobster". This creature is so large that is can cover a humans whole hand. All I can say is, if that "tree lobster" came anywhere within 10 feet of me i would swim back to the mainland quicker than you can spell Australia!

Elizabeth Bitgood's curator insight, April 24, 2014 8:33 PM

This article freeked me out at first.  The idea of hand sized bugs is just…yuck!  But after reading the article I found it very interesting.  That these bugs managed to survive on a single bush on an island isolated from the world.  The description of them as acting un-buglike by peering off into couples that sleep cuddling with each other is just kind of cool.

Joseph Thacker 's curator insight, April 25, 2014 10:35 AM

On Ball's Pyramid the stick insect is different than any other insect I have seen. The size of it is terrifying, as it as big as a human hand. There are many different kinds of animals or insects someone can find on remote islands, islands such as Madagascar, Australia and even on this small island, which is located off of Australia's coast in the Pacific.    

Jacob Crowell's curator insight, December 15, 2014 4:40 PM

Isolation can lead to some remarkable examples of evolution. This "tree lobster" is an example of that. On an island cut off from many predators and hold little resources, the tree lobster has found a way to survive.

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2 dead, many unaccounted as rescuers scramble to sinking South Korean ship

2 dead, many unaccounted as rescuers scramble to sinking South Korean ship | Geography 200 |
Rescuers scrambled to pluck hundreds of passengers from a ferry as it slowly sank off the South Korean coast
Lauren Stahowiak's insight:

Passengers and students aboard the South Korean ferry fight for their lives to get aboard rescue ships in the freezing cold waters.  It cannot be confirmed how many passengers were aboard, but it is confirmed that many are still missing and two passengers are confirmed dead. Students talk about the experience and how the waters were so cold having to swim to rescue ships but how they desperately wanted to live.

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Disputed Isles

Disputed Isles | Geography 200 |

Competing territorial claims have led to maritime disputes off the coast of Asia. See a map of the islands at issue.


This is an nice interactive map that allows the reader to explore current geopolitical conflicts that are about controlling islands.  This is an good source to use when introducing Exclusive Economic Zones, which is often the key strategic importance of small, lightly populated islands.   


Tags: EastAsia, SouthEastAsia, political, unit 4 political, territoriality, autonomy, conflict, economic. 

Via Seth Dixon
Lauren Stahowiak's insight:

This interactive map discusses the current disputes between the islands and why the land is being disputed. 

Nathan Chasse's curator insight, April 14, 2014 7:18 AM

This map shows a number of disputed islands off the coast of East Asia. These ownership of these islands would allow countries to extend their territory further into the ocean and grant them rights to any resources which may be under the ocean waters nearby. This political issue is one which driven by economics. Though the claims on these islands are not currently worth fighting over, if significant resources are found they could be, and a more powerful nation like China could flex military muscle to solidify their claim and other claimants would have to back down.

Elizabeth Bitgood's curator insight, April 24, 2014 2:40 PM

This interactive page gives relevant information about islands that are disputed over in southeast Asia.  I liked it because you could see the information in context with the map.

Jess Deady's curator insight, May 4, 2014 9:47 PM

This is like a game of Monopoly when people try and get all the houses or businesses. Except this is real life and real isles. Whose is whose? How does Asia decide where and how the EEZ's should be divided.

Rescooped by Lauren Stahowiak from Geography Education!

Break Dancing, Phnom Penh-Style

A former gang member from Long Beach, California, teaches break dancing to at-risk youth in Cambodia.


This video is a great example of cross-cultural interactions in the era of globalization.  Urban youth culture of the United States is spread to Cambodia through a former refugee (with a personally complex political geography).  What geographic themes are evident in this video? How is geography being reshaped and by what forces?

Via Seth Dixon
Lauren Stahowiak's insight:

It is always entertaining watching children break dance, especially to United States rapper Nas. "KK", a former Californian gang member, who was deported back to Cambodia, teaches children to interact with each other and stay out of trouble by break dancing. 

James Hobson's curator insight, December 4, 2014 8:34 PM

(Southeast Asia topic 7)

A gang member who gets deported and ends up being a positive role model for kids? I didn't see that coming!

This video is similar to the Scoop of the introduction of skateboarding to the Afghanistan. Both offer something foreign as a tool for both betterment and enjoyment, and this seems to be exactly what kids in these regions need. Though perhaps on a micro-scale, this can be argued as an example of globalization. And in this case, it seems pretty obvious that its impacts are for the better.

Jacob Crowell's curator insight, December 15, 2014 4:10 PM

In Cambodia, this previous gang member has found a way of taking kids off the street and teaching them how to break dance. This is interesting because it is a cultural solution to crime. This man was deported to Cambodia and with him brought break dancing. In doing so this cultural mixing is used as a way to teach at risk youth a hobby that keeps them away from crime and drugs.

Samuel D'Amore's curator insight, December 17, 2014 4:40 PM

Very similar to the previous cricket article this video shows another way those in areas of poverty and crime are pulled together and united. In this case instead of a sport it is break dancing. This dancing amongst former gang members helps to relieve tension form the area and also hopefully lead them to achieve better and loftier things. By shifting the priorities of people away from harm to themselves and others and replacing it with an activity which focuses on self improvement and community.

Rescooped by Lauren Stahowiak from Geography Education!

Flexible Urban Planning

mixed used train-tracks/market place...


Via Seth Dixon
Lauren Stahowiak's insight:

It is scary to see areas that use train-tracks as location for the marketplace. When the train approaches, people move inches away, and once the train has left, re-group and keep selling. Even tho this is a way of using areas for multiple things, it is very dangerous and i cant imagine that they foods and items don't get ruined and/or contaminated. 

David Week's curator insight, August 12, 2014 6:04 PM

I love this video. Never think that the "third world" is not more dynamic and innovative than the first!

Jeffrey Ing's curator insight, August 13, 2014 5:12 AM

people are not giving up with inflated price of urban land. They adapt and live with it :)


Hector Alonzo's curator insight, December 15, 2014 10:42 PM

Seeing the vendors prepared for the arrival of the train is impressive. They have grown accustomed to knowing how to avoid the train and then set up shop once again, as if the train never crossed their path. It shows how the residents use their countries entire space, it is using the land to your advantage and may even speak on crowded the city is.

Rescooped by Lauren Stahowiak from Geography Education!

Urbanization and Megacities: Jakarta

"This case study examines the challenges of human well-being and urbanization, especially in the megacity of Jakarta."

Via Seth Dixon
Lauren Stahowiak's insight:

In megacities, such as Jakarta, urbanization brings about many problems for local residents. The areas are crowded and residents get little to no income. An Australian organization works to help the people of Jakarta by giving them advice,food and helping where necessary. With this help, families are able to keep their spirits higher and hope that their children will live better lives than the ways that they were brought up.

Al Picozzi's curator insight, November 26, 2013 10:40 AM

Just seems to be a pattern with any mega city.  People move to the city for a better life.  Even though there is overcrowding and lack of infrastructure in these growing cities they feel it is a better life than the rural areas.  They still need the infrastructure from the government but this group has been training the people there to go and make the changes for themselves oh what they can control.  They are giving them the skills they need to make changes.  They now need to use those skills to get the government to make the necessary infrastructure changes that the government knows are needed.  They know the people are flooding to the cities and they see the promblem, but nothing wil be done until the people demand the changes that are necessary.  It can happen, might take time but it can happen..just ask the Romanov family of Russia..oh wait..they are not there...

Joseph Thacker 's curator insight, April 18, 2014 8:10 PM

Jakarta is the capitol of Indonesia and now has a population of over 28 million. Urbanization is bringing serious problems to Indonesia’s only mega city, such as poor access to clean water and housing, and overpopulation. Some people, including the young woman in this video are living with 16 or more people in one house. It seems the city is not providing enough affordable housing for its residents.

Tracy Galvin's curator insight, May 1, 2014 2:25 PM

It is nice to see an organization that is not just blindly giving resources to people in need but actually empowering them and training them to be able to get the things they need through work. The women in this story describe how they have learned to make and sell things in order to take care of their families and they describe how empowering that feels.

Scooped by Lauren Stahowiak!

Hong Kong in Lego form? Everything about these photos is awesome

In "Legography," Louis Vuitton-toting shoppers, a Big Yellow Duck and other iconic Hong Kong scenes are recreated in toy form.
Lauren Stahowiak's insight:
Hong Kong is transferred into a Lego land recreating towns and typical day to day life.
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Rescooped by Lauren Stahowiak from Geography Education!

Worker safety in China

This is an incredible video because of the shocking footage of blatant disregard for worker safety.  This can lead to an interesting discussion concerning how China has been able to have its economy grow.  What other ways has China (or Chinese companies) been "cutting corners?"  How does that give them a competitive edge on the global industrial market?     

Via Seth Dixon
Lauren Stahowiak's insight:

In Beijing, workers safety is not a top priority. This video may shock viewers to the extreme levels workers will go to for such a small paycheck. This worker, many stories up climbs onto an excavator to be lowered down to a area that could not be reached. It is insane how these unsafe conditions compare to Americas. It makes you wonder how China has such a growing economy and a global leader when when things like this are happening on a day to day basis.

James Hobson's curator insight, November 21, 2014 9:11 PM

(East Asia topic 6)
This video signifies two distinct characteristics of labor in China. First and most obviously is the disregard of safety. One could argue in the past that risks such as these were accepted by workers since China was a largely less-developed country with fewer employment opportunities; however, being a recent video and China  currently making exponential economic and developmental ground, this is definitely one of those 'things which shouldn't be happening'. With all of the nation's so-called "improvements," why are none discernible  here?

  Secondly, traits such as subservient respect are valued more in nations such as China. It is possible that if these workers hadn't have taken the risk and not completed the job, they would've been fired and had a somewhat 'tainted' reputation for not following their orders to demolish the building.

  Though it seems that all industrializing nations have gone through issues of workers' safety and reasonable expectations, China should use it's late-coming as a plus by learning from others which have gone before it, and avoiding the personal, legal, and even some social issues which have been faced before.

Jacob Crowell's curator insight, December 15, 2014 1:52 PM

China's ability to sweep unjust working conditions under the rug has allowed it to grow economically at an impressive rate. Although I disagree with unsafe working conditions it is important to note the hypocrisy that developed countries display when advocating fro workers rights. In the US for example, our economic growth was contingent on slavery, child labor, and immigrant exploitation. Unfortunately if any developing country wants to compete with countries that are at the top of the global economic hegemony, they must cut the same corners those countries cut centuries ago. What needs to be done is find a way to show developing countries that growth is possible without abusing workers. 

Samuel D'Amore's curator insight, December 17, 2014 5:23 PM

This video borders on difficult to watch. While it is definitely amazing to watch it really flies in the face of standard American job safety operations. These workers are perched on top of this building with no harnesses balancing in the shovel of a back hoe while sawing loose great slabs of concrete. Luckily no one was injured in this video but frankly this video does a great job of showing how China has been able to grow so rapidly. A lack of interest in individual workers safety and a sole goal of progress, at the possible cost of its citizens.

Rescooped by Lauren Stahowiak from Geography Education!

Hiroshima after the Atomic Bomb

Hiroshima after the Atomic Bomb | Geography 200 |
360° panoramic photography by Harbert F. Austin Jr.. Visit us to see more amazing panoramas from Japan and thousands of other places in the world.


The interactive panorama is eerily compelling...this is a haunting image. 

Via Seth Dixon
Lauren Stahowiak's insight:

This panoramic photograph shows the devastation of Hiroshima after the Atomic Bomb. Everything in sight is destroyed. Houses and poles that were lucky enough to still be standing are even lost causes. 

Brett Sinica's curator insight, November 29, 2013 2:15 PM

The panorama is eery.  The trees are dead, there is rubble, it is literally a deadzone.  No scary movie or horror story can compare to this type of devastation.  The black and white contrast seems to add even more depth to the pictures because of the consistent trend of nothingness.  It shows how massive the damage actually was.  What I found interesting is the trolley line with people riding bikes or walking on the same road.  Thinking of how they walked around after the bombs had dropped must be the strangest feeling because everything around them was simply gone.

Cam E's curator insight, April 8, 2014 11:26 AM

The thing that always stumps me about pictures after bombings and other disasters is the reason why some things are left standing. Here we see buildings destroyed and utterly annihilated as far as the eye can see, yet the telephone poles are still standing in some areas. The picture can't capture the true scope of the destruction, but it also shows how destruction is a bit random in its own way.

Jacob Crowell's curator insight, December 15, 2014 2:10 PM

These images are chilling and sad. The United States is the only country to ever use the Atomic Bomb on another country, a status I am not proud of. We can see why for 60 years people lived in constant fear during the Cold War. Also some would argue that the Atom Bomb has prevented world wars since WWII. It makes you fearful of the one leader who has access to A bombs and chooses to use them.