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Chimamanda Adichie: The danger of a single story

"Our lives, our cultures, are composed of many overlapping stories. Novelist Chimamanda Adichie tells the story of how she found her authentic cultural voice -- and warns that if we hear only a single story about another person or country, we risk a critical misunderstanding."

Seth Dixon's insight:

To gain a global perspective inherently requires understanding multiple perspectives.  Africa is frequently portrayed as 'the other' but also homogenized within a single narrative that 'flattens' truth.  How can we teach and learn about other places in a way that develops geographic empathy and shows the many stories of that can belong to any one place? 


Tags: Africa, perspective, TED.

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Hector Alonzo's curator insight, December 15, 2014 3:30 PM

This video is very interesting, in that Chimamanda Adichie tells the dangers of hearing a one sided story. It is easy to classify a country with the rest, but it is also inaccurate because they are not the same. This video reminds me of another titled "Media and Culture-- Perspective and Bias" which also takes on the idea of knowing only one side of a story or people. It is videos and people like Adichie and Reza Aslan (from the above mentioned video) that implore us to research and make ourselves knowledgable about a subject, culture, or people before making assumptions and making the mistake of grouping them together for the sake of an easy story.

Matthew Richmond's curator insight, November 4, 2015 7:39 PM

Re-scooped from Professor Dixon. This is an eye opening narrative on what it's like to be African. This video really made me question my own cultural biases and microagressions. Powerful piece.

Martin Kemp's curator insight, December 17, 2015 2:50 PM

this is a big problem in the world today in my mind. other places do not have the nationalism that is required to thrive. even this woman (who eventually became an exception) started off idolizing western countries. this is not inherently a problem but places do not try to make themselves better, the reason there is the perception of africa that there is, is because people like this woman are the exception. if more people followed her lead than the whole of Africa would not be seen this way.

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Continent by continent, TEDGlobal talks

Continent by continent, TEDGlobal talks | Geography Education | Scoop.it
Here, go around the world in less than 180 minutes with TEDGlobal talks.
Seth Dixon's insight:

I've linked various TED talks on this site; this playlist is a quick global tour feature some old favorites and ones that were new to me. 


Tags: TED, worldwide, and video.

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#deextinction

Seth Dixon's insight:

De-extinction is a new term for to me but this week a TEDx conference hosted by National Geographic focused completely on this concept on the possibility of reviving formerly extinct species. Just because we think we can bring back a lost species, does that mean we should?  What would be the benefits?  Disadvantages? 


I've read enough about passenger pigeons to know that beyond overhunting, the species went extinct as large swaths of North American forests became fragmented and modified.  While we may be able to theoretically bring back a species, we cannot rewind the clock and bring all the essential ingredients to their former ecosystem that allowed them to thrive in the first place.  De-extinction would NOT be repairing the world so that it was as if the extinction never happened, since other species in the ecosystem have adapted to their absence. Given the length of their absence, could these be considered "invasive species?"     


Tags: biogeography, environment, National Geographic, environment modify, ecology, historical, TED.

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Smartphones as geospatial tools

The disastrous earthquake in Haiti taught humanitarian groups an unexpected lesson: the power of mobile devices to coordinate, inform, and guide relief efforts.


Tags: technology, disasters, Haiti, TED.

Seth Dixon's insight:

We are only beginning to see the applications of smart phones to improve peoples lives.  In this TED talk, Paul Conneally explores some of the possibilities (citizen mapping, crowd-sourced disaster recovery, etc.) that is just sitting in the palm of our collective hands. 

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Tony Hall's curator insight, February 18, 2013 6:43 AM

This is why ICT is important. No. Vital! Our students need to see things like this so that they understand the positive aspects of technology. They need to see that SMS, Facebook & Twitter are so much more than just a way sharing silly photos of themselves. This technology has the power to affect real, positive change. 

techsavvygirl's curator insight, February 18, 2013 8:21 AM

Augmenting human potential with smartphones

Lorraine Chaffer's curator insight, April 23, 4:11 AM
Responding to disasters and preparedness using technology
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Pop culture in the Arab world

TED Talks At TEDGlobal University, Shereen El Feki shows how some Arab cultures are borrowing trademarks of Western pop culture -- music videos, comics, even Barbie -- and adding a culturally appropriate twist.
Seth Dixon's insight:

This TED talk cleverly discusses the cultural processes of globalization by examining two examples from the Islamic world.  The examples of the TV station 4Shbab and the comic book series The 99 show that all global cultural interactions don’t have to result in a homogenous “melting pot.”  Local cultural forces can tap into the powers of globalized culture that can create dynamic local cultures that are both intensely local and global. 


Questions to Ponder: What does the speaker mean when she by refers to cultural interactions as a mesh (as a opposed to a clash or mash) of civilizations?  What other examples of cultural meshes can you see that show these processes? 


Tags: TED, religion, culture, Islam, globalization, popular culture, unit 3 culture.

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Denise Pacheco's curator insight, December 17, 2013 11:23 AM

I don't think popular culture and folk culture interact very well. They believe in completely different things and live different types of lives according to their values. The speaker means that the cultural interaction is intertwined together because of the islamic people who have borrowed cultural ideas from other ancient and modern civilizations and adapted it to their own. That's why it's meshed as a opposed to clashing or mash. For example, the music video channel that's like MTV. I think it's kind of funny how they made the people in that music video, that's from the USA, look like we also worship Allah. Also, the comic books show religious values in it, especially since the characters come from it. They want young people to not get sucked in to the outside world or modern culture from different societies, so instead they want to incorporate their religion with our ideas of culture.

Courtney Barrowman's curator insight, November 5, 2014 8:22 PM

unit 3

Jamey Kahl's curator insight, March 27, 11:09 PM

This TED talk cleverly discusses the cultural processes of globalization by examining two examples from the Islamic world.  The examples of the TV station 4Shbab and the comic book series The 99 show that all global cultural interactions don’t have to result in a homogenous “melting pot.”  Local cultural forces can tap into the powers of globalized culture that can create dynamic local cultures that are both intensely local and global. 


Questions to Ponder: What does the speaker mean when she by refers to cultural interactions as a mesh (as a opposed to a clash or mash) of civilizations?  What other examples of cultural meshes can you see that show these processes? 


Tags: TED, religion, culture, Islam, globalization, popular culture, unit 3 culture.

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Designs to Fit More People in Every City

TED Talks How can we fit more people into cities without overcrowding? Kent Larson shows off folding cars, quick-change apartments and other innovations that could make the city of the future work a lot like a small village of the past.


This talk is relevant not just because it focuses on many urban issues; it also is a fantastic demonstration of how to use spatial thinking to solve problems.  

 

Tagsdensity, urban, spatial, planning, TED

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Mike Carney's curator insight, September 30, 2013 5:41 PM

This TED Talk presents some very forward-thinking ideas on urban planning. With cities becoming more and more packed it is important to rethink the way we live and work in cities. Space saving technologies like the fold-up cars and small, changeable apartments seem futuristic but doable. This video challenges the viewer to think about the form and function of cities in new ways. Moving into the future it is important to adapt to the growing congestion in cities by applying new technologies with flexible designs that make cities more livable. I think that the smart apartments are an innovative solution but unlikely to catch on any time soon. I think that the folding cars are more likely to catch on because so many people already use the tiny smart cars and car-sharing services like zip-car are gaining in popularity. 

Anhony DeSimone's curator insight, December 19, 2013 8:51 AM

This video is about how we can design a city that is less crowded. What Kent Larson thinks should happen to a city is basically minimize certain aspects of the city. What that means is adding these new ideas of folding cars,quick-change apartments and other innovations that will lessen the cities population and crowdedness. 

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Photos that bear witness to modern slavery

TED Talks For the past two years, photographer Lisa Kristine has traveled the world, documenting the unbearably harsh realities of modern-day slavery.



Seth Dixon's insight:

This is a chilling glimpse into the worst and darkest side of the economic systems of geography and labor in the world. It is estimated that there are more than 25 million people who today live in state that can be described as modern-day slavery. We should not discuss slavery only in the past tense, and yet it conflicts with how most people conceptualize the world today.


Questions to Ponder: How can this even be happening in the 21st century? What geographic and economic forces lead to these situations portrayed in this TED talk? What realistically could be done to lessen the amount of slavery in the world today?


Tags: TED, labor, economic, class, poverty, South Asia, Africa, video.

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Kyle Toner's comment, November 6, 2012 12:17 PM
This video truly opened eyes into the conflict of modern day slavery. I had no idea just how prevalent, global and horrible this situation is.
Felix Ramos Jr.'s curator insight, March 31, 2015 4:34 PM

A truly sad reality is exposed in this well-produced video.  Many of us hear about slavery still happening around us but I think most of us brush it off as little more than taboo.  To see these photos and to hear this woman's firsthand account is shocking.  If you are not instantly moved to want to help, I don't know if you're human.  This is atrocious and I only pray that one day this reality comes to an end.

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The Global Food Waste Scandal

"TED Talks Western countries throw out nearly half of their food, not because it’s inedible -- but because it doesn’t look appealing. Tristram Stuart delves into the shocking data of wasted food, calling for a more responsible use of global resources."

Seth Dixon's insight:

No one should be surprised that more developed societies are more wasteful societies.  It is not just personal wasting of food at the house and restaurants that are the problem.  Perfectly edible food is thrown out due to size (smaller than standards but perfectly normal), cosmetics (Bananas that are shaped 'funny') and costumer preference (discarded bread crust).  This is an intriguing perceptive on our consumptive culture, but it also is helpful in framing issues such as sustainability and human and environmental interactions in a technologically advanced societies that are often removed form the land where the food they eat originates. 


Tags: food, agriculture, consumption, sustainability, TED, video, unit 5 agriculture.

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Shelby Porter's curator insight, November 4, 2013 10:39 AM

It isn't surprising that the more a country has developed, the more wasteful they are. I just think that we need to change this standard. We can not keep this up if we want to sustain ourselves for centuries to come. If we are going to change our consumption culture, we need to look at why it has become the way it is. Why do we see food as unappealing? This is an interesting video and certaintly makes you think twice about throwing anything away. 

Kenny Dominguez's curator insight, November 29, 2013 6:13 PM

Ted explains it well how we all waste perfectly good food that people would like to eat. Also it was amazing how much food was in the dumpsters that was just a day or week old. That meat could feed hundreds of people that are struggling to eat and all that meet to waste. 

megan b clement's curator insight, December 16, 2013 1:51 AM

Ted talks about just how wasteful our planet is. How we just ignore the issue and act like it will  not affect us in the future. When he shows you video and pictures of massive piles of the ends of a loaf of bread or all the food that Stop and Shop throws out because it does not "look" good for the customer. How every little bit of help counts you can try to make a little bit of an effort to be less wasteful. We have so much unnecessary waste. Like when he uses the example of how many people throw away the ends of a loaf of bread then he shows the waste of the ends of bread in massive piles it makes you sick. Especially with all of the hungry people in the world we need to be more resourceful.

 

 

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2600 years of history in one object

TED Talks A clay cylinder covered in Akkadian cuneiform script, damaged and broken, the Cyrus Cylinder is a powerful symbol of religious tolerance and multi-culturalism.

 

At first glance this TED Talk appears to be more about ancient history, archaeology and biblical studies that anything modern.  Yet as Neil MacGregor, the Director of the British Museum continues his discussion of the Cyrus Cylinder (A clay cylinder covered in Akkadian cuneiform script), it becomes clear that this historical artifact is vital in understanding how modern states conceive of their heritage, cultural legacy and role within the Middle East today (such as Israel, Iraq, Iran and even the U.K.).  As such the Cyrus Cylinder is a powerful symbol of religious tolerance and multi-culturalism and plays a role in shaping Middle Eastern cultural and political institutions. 

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Don Brown Jr's comment, October 1, 2012 9:18 PM
Objects, ideas and land can have multi overlapping meanings that are constantly being reinterpreted by each succeeding generation creating new symbolic understandings that overlap into many societies and cultures.
Rebecca Farrea's curator insight, November 8, 2013 9:16 AM

Neil MacGregor, the Director of the British Museum, explains Middle Eastern history using the Cyrus Cylinder.  His first point in this TED talk is especially interesting because he explains that people age and perish and objects do the same, but objects such as this cylinder survive and are able to tell important stories of history for a much longer time than people normally can.

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Industrial Foods, Allergies and Cancers

Robyn shares her personal story and how it inspired her current path as a "Real Food" evangelist. Grounded in a successful Wall Street career that was more i...

 

Robyn authored "The Unhealthy Truth: How Our Food Is Making Us Sick and What We Can Do About It." A former Wall Street food industry analyst, Robyn brings insight, compassion and detailed analysis to her research into the impact that the global food system is having on the health of our children.  As new proteins are engineered into our food supply to maximize profits for the food industry, childhood food allergies are on the rise.  What are the connections between cancer and modern consumption patterns?  The correlation is clearly there; is causation also present?  How have the economics of agriculture shaped this situation?  How will the future economics of agriculture reshape food production? 

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Climate Change is Simple

David Roberts is staff writer at Grist.org. In "Climate Change is Simple" he describes the causes and effects of climate change in blunt, plain terms. On Apr...

 

This is video is designed to explain climate change in 15 minutes.  If you would like see the slides presented, you can see them at: http://grist.org/climate-change/climate-change-is-simple-we-do-something-or-were-screwed/

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The Economics of Sustainability

http://www.ted.com Have we used up all our resources? Have we filled up all the livable space on Earth? Paul Gilding suggests we have, and the possibility of...

 

This provocatively title TED talk would be an excellent resource for discussing sustainable development.  What are the economic, environmental, political and cultural ramifications of suggested policies that seek to lead towards sustainable development?  What are the ramifications of not changing policies towards sustainable development?  

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Kenny Dominguez's curator insight, December 12, 2013 1:02 AM

 I found this video very interesting because it spoke about how there is so little space and more and more people are having kids. But there is no space because everyone likes having a lot of room to expand that is why because everyone in the world could fit in the state of California. So there is space it is just not spread out good enough that everyone could fit comfortably. 

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The true cost of oil

The true cost of oil | Geography Education | Scoop.it
TED Talks What does environmental devastation actually look like? At TEDxVictoria, photographer Garth Lenz shares shocking photos of the Alberta Tar Sands mining project -- and the beautiful (and vital) ecosystems under threat.

 

This is a visually stunning portrayal of Canadian landscapes.   He shows incredibly gorgeous photographs of the ecosystems of the boreal forest, indigenous cultural landscapes and natural scenery.  This is unfortunately the backdrop for the impacts of industrial extraction of oil from the tar sands of the Athabasca in Canada.  Collectively, this makes for a jarring justaposition of environmental landscapes.

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Elizabeth Bitgood's curator insight, January 29, 2014 10:59 AM

This presentation is very moving on the emotional side of the plight of Canada’s natural resources.  When it comes to oil production no matter where it is it will be dirty, messy and fraught with problems that impact the environment.  The idea that everyone wants oil but they don’t want to mess up their own country to get it is an interesting problem.  Frankly the more developed countries like Canada are more likely to mine the resources responsibly then a country that has little or no environmental protections.  This speaker gives a very impassioned presentation but he offers no alternatives to oil.  Getting oil from a country that has environmental protection laws is cleaner and better then getting it from a country that cares nothing for the environment; it is less accountable and more environmentally damaging to get it from somewhere else.  Pipelines are cleaner ways of moving oil as they seldom leak and don’t crash and spill.  The debate over oil and environmental responsibility will continue until a viable source of clean energy is created. 

Louis Mazza's curator insight, January 28, 2015 12:37 PM

this video shows the beauties to be found in world, and the negative effects that mining for oil can do to these areas. in one region it was home to a type of deer but all they could be found was the deers antlers. that showed that mining for oil was killing all the deer. all these regions are under threat. the largest toxic wastelands on the planet are being created.

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My escape from North Korea

"As a child growing up in North Korea, Hyeonseo Lee thought her country was 'the best on the planet.' It wasn't until the famine of the 90s that she began to to wonder. She escaped the country at 14, to begin a life in hiding, as a refugee in China. Hers is a harrowing, personal tale of survival and hope."

Seth Dixon's insight:

Not all migration is voluntary and this woman's personal struggle to flee North Korea alternates between heartwarming and heartbreaking.  Her accent is thick, but it is worth it to her her story from her own mouth. 


Tags: North Koreamigration, political, East Asia, development, states, poverty.

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서병기's curator insight, November 6, 2014 7:00 PM

Because of the tragedies of history, there are still scattered family both in South and North Korea. Please hope for the unification of the Korean Peninsula.

Julia Kang's curator insight, November 6, 2014 8:45 PM

So many North Koreans are suffering from poverty. They do not have any food and we should pay more attention to them. This video was quite interesting!

Tanya Townsend's curator insight, November 16, 2015 9:37 PM

This TED talk is amazing and gives you a real life insight on what it is like to be a refugee.. This women's story is one of courage an strength. I was thoroughly surprised at how these people were being punished simply for trying to survive.

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The Cyrus Cylinder: An Artifact Ahead of Its Time

The Cyrus Cylinder: An Artifact Ahead of Its Time | Geography Education | Scoop.it
This relic from ancient Persia had a profound influence on the Founding Fathers
Seth Dixon's insight:

This video can be seen as the three minute version of a 20 minute TED talk by Neil MacGregor, the Director of the British Museum.  He discusses the profound importance that the Cyrus Cylinder (A clay cylinder covered in Akkadian cuneiform script) had on modern political though on multiculturalism.


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David Ricci's comment, April 30, 2013 10:07 AM
I decided to write a comment on this video because there were no others. After watching the video though, i realized that it was quite interesting. I love looking into the history of ancient civilizations such as the Roman empire. This video takes an artifact from the ancient Persian Empire and proves that it was used by our founding fathers to help dictate the way we live today. Persia was the first empire that allowed complete religious freedom. When Jefferson was writing the Declaration he looked to Cyrus and the cylinder for inspiration. At this time period they were doing something unheard of by having complete religious freedom and the fathers were not sure how they could make it work. With little experience they went to the only know successful example of this type of society. All societies have gotten inspirations from history and this is an interesting bit of information about where our countries inspiration came from.
Kevin Cournoyer's comment, May 1, 2013 12:52 AM
Again, as a history major, I found this video to be particularly interesting. I was not aware of the Cyrus Cylinder despite my deep interest in both ancient history and the American Revolution.
The Cyrus Cylinder and the U.S. Constitution are unique because they both provided for equal protection of different races, religions, etc. Because of this, both pieces allowed for a united entity that encompassed diverse cultures, making for a heterogeneous geographic area. I think this video was most interesting because it shows that despite both spatial and chronological separation, common ideas can transcend all different barriers to be upheld and striven towards for a better world.
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How the languages we speak affects the way we think

What can economists learn from linguists?

Tags: language, culture, economic, TED.

Seth Dixon's insight:

Our thoughts shape the words we speak, but the language we speak (and ways we communicate) help shape the way we think.  In this TED talk, an economist looks at how the grammatical structure that languages use to speak about the future impacts how the speakers of the language are able to save money for future events.  For 5 other examples of how language can impact how we think and perceive the world, see this attached article

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Anne-Lous van den Ende's curator insight, May 7, 2013 11:18 AM

Intersting video on how the different languages we speak could affect our way of thinking.

Jack Born's curator insight, November 6, 2013 7:39 PM

I have never thought of this. I didn't even realise how different languages and cultures can be and how the tiny things effect the entire language.This demostrates why some languages are beter than others in their own way. 

Ms. Brin's curator insight, August 28, 2014 2:12 AM

Very interesting!

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Fresh Water Resources

View full lesson: http://ed.ted.com/lessons/where-we-get-our-fresh-water-christiana-z-peppard Fresh water accounts for only 2.5% of Earth's...
Seth Dixon's insight:

How much of the Earth's water is fresh water?  How much of that is used for industrial, agricultural or domestic uses?  Why is groundwater becoming increasingly utilized?  Enjoy this TED-ED video for the answers. 


Tags: water, environment, consumption, resources, environment depend.

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Agron S. Dida's comment, December 17, 2013 5:33 AM
Ben, there is a good link about the lack of water: http://www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2013/12/131216154330.htm#.UrAC_n3F2FA.twitter
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The Voices of China's Workers

TED Talks In the ongoing debate about globalization, what's been missing is the voices of workers -- the millions of people who migrate to factories in China and other emerging countries to make goods sold all over the world.


Our collective understanding of modern industrialization and globalization needs to go beyond the binary of "oppressors" and "victims."  This lecture explores the voices and lives of Chinese workers that we so often simply see as simply victims of a system, but are full of ambition and agency. 

 

Tags: industry, globalization, labor, China, TED

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Ryli Smith's comment, May 5, 2013 2:55 PM
In these Chinese factories, they don't view these jobs as harsh or poor treatment because this is better than how they would be doing back in their villages. They want these jobs so bad because they will give them a better life. Also, you have to remember that not all of these Chinese factory workers want to have an iPhone or a Coach purse or Nike shoes, because those things don't have any worth in their culture.
Samuel D'Amore's curator insight, December 17, 2014 5:26 PM

The plight of Chinese workers today is incredibly great. This TED talks explains the situations many in China find themselves in the terrible conditions they must work in. While us in the west see this as unthinkable China's model for success and expansion comes at the cost of their workforce who are subjugated to poor working conditions as very low pay. The real hope for this to change is for the nation as a whole to become wealthy enough that these workers will be able to demand fair wages and work environments. 

Jacob Crowell's curator insight, December 17, 2014 11:08 PM

These workers do see their jobs as opportunities. This video is a great eye opener for people who tend to fall into the trap of looking at globalization as a system of haves and have nots. 

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Climate Change, Disaster Mitigation and City Planning

TED Talks As Vicki Arroyo says, it's time to prepare our homes and cities for our changing climate, with its increased risk of flooding, drought and uncertainty.


Our major cities are suceptible to environmental catastrophes for a whole host of reasons.  Cities depend on a smooth of goods, money and services provided by infrastructure that we take for granted and assume will always work 24/7.  Presented in the video are some ideas about how we should rethink our cities with a different ecological paradigm to protect our cities more in the future. 


Tags: planning, urban ecology, environment adapt, sustainability.

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Denise Pacheco's curator insight, December 17, 2013 1:44 PM

Governements around the world are slowly but surely creating new plans to ensure the safety of the people. They have already worked on evacuation plans and tranportation for getting people out but, they also need to think about where would people go and how will they adapt to their new enviornment. I'm glad that some places started working on plans to build houses, highways, and churches at a higher elevation, but other countries also need help figuring this stuff out. They need a solution to better secure homes and lives. Everyone needs to work together to prepare for climate change and natural disasters, especially those places where are most likely to hit.

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Archeology from Space

TED Talks In this short talk, TED Fellow Sarah Parcak introduces the field of "space archeology" -- using satellite images to search for clues to the lost sites of past civilizations.


The uses of geospatial technologies is NOT limited to studying geography, but it is the bedrock of many research projects that involve spatial thinking (as demonstrated in this TED talk).  Geographic principles and geographers can be very important  members of interdisciplinary teams.


Tags: spatial, remote sensing, geospatial, TED, MiddleEast, historical

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Joshua Lefkowitz's curator insight, January 15, 2014 11:13 PM

This sounds really intruging to me; I have heard of astroarchiology before in the aplication of finding undiscovered large objects (cities, towns sttlements) by using satellites to map deviations in teh earths surface accurately enough to distingush structures like a building foundation. I just find this sort of thing fascinating. I am still in awe that this dort of thing is possible.

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Making Sense of Maps

TED Talks Map designer Aris Venetikidis is fascinated by the maps we draw in our minds as we move around a city -- less like street maps, more like schematics or wiring diagrams, abstract images of relationships between places.


This video touches on numerous themes that are crucial to geographers including: 1) how our minds arrange spatial information, 2) how to best graphically represent spatial information in a useful manner for your audience and 3) how mapping a place can be the impetus for changing outdated systems. This is the story of how a cartographer working to improve a local transportation system map, which in turn, started city projects to improve the infrastructure and public utilities in Dublin, Ireland. This cartographer argues that the best map design for a transport system needs to conform to how on cognitive mental mapping works more so than geographic accuracy (like so many subway maps do).


Tags: transportation, urban, mapping, cartography, planning, TED, video, unit 7 cities.

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Jesse Gauthier's comment, October 14, 2012 3:42 PM
When trying to graphically represent spatial information in a useful manner for your particular audience, you will have a lot to take into consideration. How familiar are the travelers with the area you map out? Are there visuals to precisely mark on the map so that will they accurately correspond to the area?
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New York -- before the City

TED Talks 400 years after Hudson found New York harbor, Eric Sanderson shares how he made a 3D map of Mannahatta's fascinating pre-city ecology of hills, rivers, wildlife -- accurate down to the block -- when Times Square was a wetland and you...

 

KC: The Manhattan Project created a picture of the area before the development of a city, the way Henry Hudson did during his 1609 exploration. After 10 years (1999-2009), the research project has expanded to study the entire city of New York. The Welikia Project analyzes geography and landscape ecology to discover the original environment and compare it to present day. Scientists have learned that world's largest cities once had a natural landscape of freshwater wetlands and salt marshes, ponds and streams, forests and fields with an equally diverse wildlife community. By focusing on the city's biodiversity of 400 years ago and the modern era, information can be gathered about what has changed, what has remained constant, where the city was done well and where it needs to improve. This source is useful because it allows for the visualization of NYC in a way never seen before. Urban environments, such as NYC, have a landscape largely created by humans, so the skyscrapers, pavement, and mass population is far removed from the landscape it once was.

 

Find more information about the Welikia Project and more on New York City's urban ecology on this scoop.it topic.


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Kim Vignale's comment, August 12, 2012 2:03 PM
I was surprised on how green NYC is because of all the cars and urban development. I think this project topic is very informative and interesting (makes me want to got to NYC) . I thought it was very interesting how NYC was in the early 1900s and how it became now. I also think it's a great idea how adding more greenery to the urban city will add sort of a rural feel to a big city.
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How to Fool a GPS

What if you could use GPS technology to find your misplaced keys? How about if you could use that same technology to lie about where you were in the world or...

 

We know the common usages of GPS technologies.  As the accuracy of GPS data improves, how does this expand the potenial uses?  What are the ethnics and legalities of GPS tracking devices?  Just like hackers online alter the information with rely on, this video is an introduction to the analogous GPS spoofing technology.  This TED talk is a great exploration of the future of GPS technology and privacy issues. 

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Ms. Harrington's comment, July 17, 2012 8:52 AM
The bit about neighbors tracking eachother is an example of the law not keeping up with technology and modernization. This is an interesting and complex issue that will come up again and again in the future, I am sure.
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Sustainable Urbanism

"Jaime Lerner reinvented urban space in his native Curitiba, Brazil. Along the way, he changed the way city planners worldwide see what’s possible in the metropolitan landscape.  From building opera houses with wire to mapping the connection between the automobile and your mother-in-law, Jaime Lerner delights in discovering eccentric solutions to vexing urban problems. In the process he has transformed the face of cities worldwide."

Seth Dixon's insight:

Jaime Lerner does not see cities as the problem; he sees urbanism as the solution to many global problems.  This video outlines practical plans to rethink the city to be more sustainable.  Click here to see the trailer for a documentary about the urban changes in Curitiba, Brazil. 

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Elizabeth Bitgood's curator insight, February 17, 2014 11:47 AM

This video is enlightening.  The speaker uses the city as a model for fixing problems in the world.  Instead of seeing the city as an enemy to environmentalism, he purposes changing the cities and reworking old sites like quarries into something that is useable today.  He also advocates the integration of the transportation systems to make commuting more feasible as well as less pollution generating. 

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Eduardo Paes: The 4 commandments of cities

TED Talks Eduardo Paes is the mayor of Rio de Janeiro, a sprawling, complicated, beautiful city of 6.5 million.

 

What should city planners be doing to maintain a vibrant city?  The Mayor of Rio de Janeiro explains his vision for cities and city management for the future. 

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