Geography Education
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Geography Education
Supporting geography educators everywhere with current digital resources.
Curated by Seth Dixon
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Walk Appeal and Public Health

Walk Appeal and Public Health | Geography Education | Scoop.it
"The core idea of Walk Appeal is that people walk longest and most often in places that entice them, but rarely walk just because they’re told they ought to. Some Walk Appeal factors are measurable, while others are immeasurable, and it has long been clear that Walk Appeal is the best predictor of the viability of neighborhood businesses."
Seth Dixon's insight:

What is a reasonable distance to walk around town?  Research shows that cities with improved sidewalks, less parking lots, attractive storefronts and other amenities that encourage walking.  If  walking the urban environment is and of itself an experience worth having and makes the person feel like a flâneur, experiencing the city on a deeper level, automotive transport goes down and walking goes up.  Urban infrastructure is more important for most people than distance in deciding whether to get in the car or walk down the street (for distances under 2 miles).   Bottom line: neighborhoods that have an appealing sense of place are more walkable.

 

Tags: urbanplace, transportationplanning, urbanism, architecture.

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Jessica Ruddy's curator insight, March 21, 10:58 AM

What is a reasonable distance to walk around town?  Research shows that cities with improved sidewalks, less parking lots, attractive storefronts and other amenities that encourage walking.  If  walking the urban environment is and of itself an experience worth having and makes the person feel like a flâneur, experiencing the city on a deeper level, automotive transport goes down and walking goes up.  Urban infrastructure is more important for most people than distance in deciding whether to get in the car or walk down the street (for distances under 2 miles).   Bottom line: neighborhoods that have an appealing sense of place are more walkable.

 

Tags: urban, place, transportation, planning, urbanism, architecture.

Lorraine Chaffer's curator insight, April 16, 1:21 AM

The concepts of "liveable streets" and "placemaking" can enhance the liveability of places.

Read about " Eyes on the street" amd " broken window theory",  "walkability", "green infrastructure"  and " 20 minute neighbourhoods" and orher strategies to enhance liveability in Macmillan Geoworld 7 NSW 

10.3 Creating better communities

10..4 Places for people

10.5 Liveable streets 

10.6 Green places and open spaces 

Kristina Lemson's curator insight, April 16, 10:44 PM
Use Google Earth to examine the walkability of Banksia Grove. Can younidentify specific elements that look like they have been included to meet this aim? Conversely, what mitigates against people walking in BG?
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Global Cities

"The evolving role of cities and regions presents planning challenges as urban areas are work to achieve particular social, economic and environmental goals. This video explores a range of cities to examine how fully integrated planning, design, engineering and management capabilities can help to improve cities."


Tags: urban, planning, urbanism, architecture.

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Ruth Reynolds's curator insight, November 15, 2015 7:41 PM

An advertisement but interesting

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Can you identify these world cities from their street plans alone?

Can you identify these world cities from their street plans alone? | Geography Education | Scoop.it
We’ve stripped out the street names and lost the labels – but can you still recognise the cities from their aerial views?
Seth Dixon's insight:

This is a fun map quiz that is part memory, but also relies on pattern recognition to see if you can understand the urban morphology that shaped these places.  I got 11 out of 13...can anybody top that?  I'm sure someone can; give it a shot.  


Tagsplanning, architecture, urban, regions, trivia, games.

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Why are we so reliant on air conditioning? (It's not just climate change, it's bad design)

Why are we so reliant on air conditioning? (It's not just climate change, it's bad design) | Geography Education | Scoop.it
Air conditioners have made architects lazy, and we've forgotten how to design houses that might work without it.


A hundred years ago, a house in Florida looked different than a house in New England. The northern house might be boxy, have relatively small windows, almost always two stories with low ceilings, and a big fireplace in the middle. 

In Florida, the house might have high ceilings, tall double-hung windows, and deep porches. Trees would be planted around the house to block the sun. 

Today, houses pretty much look the same wherever you go in North America, and one thing made this possible: central air conditioning. Now, the United States uses more energy for air conditioning than 1 billion people in Africa use for everything.


Tags: planning, architecture, housingurban, place, environment adaptenergyconsumption.

Seth Dixon's insight:

The recent demographic shift to the "Sun Belt" in the U.S.  coincides with the mass availability of air conditioning (among other factors).  Our homes are less regionally distinct and in terms of the human/environmental interactions, our answer is greater modifications as opposed to regional adaptations...this article is a call for more architectural improvements instead of more energy consumption to beat the heat.  In Europe however, they see the United States as "over air-conditioned" in the summer.

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Stephen Zimmett's curator insight, July 23, 2015 1:12 PM

A GOOD STORY ABOUT AIR CONDITIONING

Corine Ramos's curator insight, December 8, 2015 8:18 PM

The recent demographic shift to the "Sun Belt" in the U.S.  coincides with the mass availability of air conditioning (among other factors).  Our homes are less regionally distinct and in terms of the human/environmental interactions, our answer is greater modifications as opposed to regional adaptations...this article is a call for more architectural improvements instead of more energy consumption to beat the heat.  In Europe however, they see the United States as "over air-conditioned" in the summer.

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Temples and Human Sexuality

Temples and Human Sexuality | Geography Education | Scoop.it
It's a good thing we have so many guardians of Indian culture to protect us, the impressionable Indian youth, from being corrupted and misled. (Much like Indian culture, this post is very NSFW.)


Hinduism is much more sensual and explicit in their depictions of the human body and sexuality than other religious traditions.  Sacred spaces in India consequently feature a different ethos on their temples and shrines.  The image here is among the more 'tame' ones in this set (just sayin').  

 

Tags: culture, India, Hinduismsexuality, South Asia, religion.

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How to Make an Attractive City

We've grown good at making many things in the modern world - but strangely the art of making attractive cities has been lost. Here are some key principles for how to make attractive cities once again.
Seth Dixon's insight:

While we can't objectively measure beauty, in this video from the School of Life, London-based Swiss writer Alain de Botton offers a cheeky, thought-provoking, six-point manifesto on the need for making beauty a priority in urban architecture and design. Alain de Botton feels that tourism can be seen as helpful proxy variable for what the general public perceives as good urbanism that makes for beautiful cities.  The six main points of this article are:

  • Order and Variety
  • Visible Life
  • Compact
  • Orientation and Mystery
  • Scale
  • Local


Tags: urban, planning, urbanism, culturearchitecture, tourism.

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Seth Forman's curator insight, May 26, 2015 6:57 PM

Summary: This interesting video talks about principles that should be considered by city planners that could make our life's better and happier.

 

Insight: This video is relevant  to unit 7 because it shows efforts that should be taken by urban planners and how a simple city layout can effect our lives. 

Emerald Pina's curator insight, May 27, 2015 1:01 AM

This video gives you an overview of how to make the most attractive city in six ways. It explains the reasons and the wants of a city that potential residents are looking for.

 

This video relates to Unit 7: Cities and Urban Land Use because it talks about the orgin, site and situation a city should have for it to be considered attractive to people. A city should be chaotic/ordered, should have visible life, compact, is should have a nice/mysterious orientation, it should not be too big or too small, and it should be local and lively. Today, many cities lack attractiveness because of the intellectual confusion around beauty and the lack of political will. I totally agree with video and the requirement s to have an attrative city. 

Shane C Cook's curator insight, May 27, 2015 4:17 AM

We definitely need more visually pleasing cities, our world is lacking and we are loosing it to like in the video "corporate opportunists".

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Vintage Video of NYC

"Oldest and most incredible footage of New York City ever, including where the WTC would be built. With added maps carefully researched to show where the camera was. 28 shots of classic footage circa 1905." http://tinyurl.com/ohsuobg


Tags: urban, historicalarchitecture, landscape, NYC.

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Maricarmen Husson's curator insight, March 21, 2015 2:26 PM

"Material de archivo más antiguo y más increíble de la ciudad de Nueva York , incluyendo donde se construiría el World Trade Center. Con mapas añadidos investigado cuidadosamente para mostrar dónde estaba la cámara. 

Vincent Lahondère's curator insight, March 24, 2015 4:04 PM

Etonnant !


Pour aller plus loin 


- New York d'hier à aujourd'hui : diaporama

Stephen Zimmett's curator insight, March 25, 2015 1:23 PM
Surviving Film
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The ghastly tragedy of the suburbs

The ghastly tragedy of the suburbs | Geography Education | Scoop.it
In James Howard Kunstler's view, public spaces should be inspired centers of civic life and the physical manifestation of the common good. Instead, he argues, what we have in America is a nation of places not worth caring about.
Seth Dixon's insight:

Kunstler passionately argues that American architecture and urban planning are not creating public places that encourage interaction and communal engagement.  We should create more distinct places that foster a sense of place that is 'worth fighting for,' as opposed to suburbia which he sees as emblematic of these problems. 


Question to Ponder: How should we design cities to create a strong sense of place?  What elements are necessary?  Warning: He uses some strong language.  


Tagsurban, planning architecture, suburbs, TED, video.

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Kevin Barker's curator insight, January 21, 2015 9:02 AM

This could become something of a fixation for me.  Plano TX is seen on many levels of a great suburban city but here is one way it is lacking most.

Linda Denty's curator insight, February 3, 2015 5:41 PM
Strong language used in this!
Zeke Robinson's curator insight, May 26, 2015 9:23 PM

i disagree with this guy, for suburbs bring us close and save space and its good that we have them.

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The Tower of London Remembers

The Tower of London Remembers | Geography Education | Scoop.it
Be a part of the Tower of London’s major centenary commemoration for the outbreak of the First World War.
Seth Dixon's insight:

The news of this art installation this summer captivated the media.  Art transforms the place, and the place breaths additional layers of meaning into the work of art. The result was an highly evocative and poignant landscape created to be a living reminder of multiple historical events and the wounds that war can inflict on a national consciousness.  


Tags architecture, art, landscape, LondonUK, historical, war.

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Burning Man and Ephemeral Geographies

"An aerial perspective on Burning Man 2013, in Black Rock Playa, NV"

Seth Dixon's insight:

This annual arts festival with a strong counter-cultural ethos literally is an experiment in producing alternative urban and cultural geographies that reject normative regulations embedded within societies. These geographies created last only about a week, as an escape from the regular strictures of society. Burning Man celebrates alternative spiritualities and creates monuments to impermanence while allowing people to wear zany costumes. Many feel that in leaving behind ‘the real world’ they find their true home at Burning Man. The ephemeral alternative geographies then fade back into the desert but not without creating a visually remarkable place. Some feel that the festival has become too popular and famous to be what it truly was intended to be as the rich and famous descend on the playa as well.


Questions to Ponder: Part of Burning Man’s success is due to its impermanence; if this community were created to exist year-round, would it still work? Why or why not? Why do festivals like this attract so many? What does it culturally say about the participants and the societies that they leave behind?


Tags: communityplace, architectureimages, art, landscape.

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Barbara Goebel's curator insight, September 13, 2014 11:58 AM

Fascinating topic for research...connect it to ecology themes, economics, psychology...what else?

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'Neo-Andean' architecture sprouts in Bolivia

'Neo-Andean' architecture sprouts in Bolivia | Geography Education | Scoop.it

"Brash, baroque and steeped in native Andean symbols, the mini-mansions are a striking sight on the caked-dirt streets of El Alto, the inexorably expanding sister city of Bolivia's capital."

Seth Dixon's insight:

The pre-Columbian symbols of the condor, serpent and Tree of Life adorn the architecture of these brightly colored ballrooms that also have European-imported chandeliers, arches and other baroque elements.  The spread of globalization is often assumed to be a homogenizing cultural force, but local cultures typically take elements of the global, and make it their own.  The global becomes local and deeply rooted in place and reshapes place.


Tags globalizationarchitecture, South America, folk cultures, culture, Bolivia.

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Bob Beaven's curator insight, February 12, 2015 2:48 PM

Indigenous peoples across the world are beginning to take pride in their heritage once again, after being told by the forces of the imperialism in their countries, that it was not as good as European culture.  This article shows how in Bolivia, the Aymara people, a native group of the country, are rising to political, economic, and social prominence in the country.  Even the country's leader is from this group.  The architecture of this new rich class reflects native heritage but has elements of globalization.  The "castle" mentioned in the article has indoor soccer pitches (originally a European Sport) but it has so much popularity in South America, that the region is known for it today (look no further than Argentina's Lionel Messi or Brazil's Neymar).  The ballrooms also have European chandeliers, but so strong is the native influenced expressed in the houses, that they take these global factors and make them their own.  I believe this is a beneficial fact, the indigenous people across the world should be proud of their heritage and diverse backgrounds.

 

Gene Gagne's curator insight, November 22, 2015 11:05 AM

I should not have seen the squatters video first. I know this is a different location but its just amazing economically how you have people, mind you humans who live like the squatters just trying to survive and not because of things they did wrong after all in the other video the gentleman trying to support his family had a job in a state bank but just because they can't catch a break or the way the system is set up. In this video everything is rich and people have no worries about a roof over their head or food in their stomach. I know this happens across the world but just imagine everyone enjoying the same rich benefits and having no economic classes.

Benjamin Jackson's curator insight, December 13, 2015 12:43 PM

this is a magnificent example of a new style of architecture sprouting up almost overnight, and a style which is inspired by new ideas. its fantastic to see none traditional architecture becoming big.

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New York's Changing Skyline

New York's Changing Skyline | Geography Education | Scoop.it
Seth Dixon's insight:

I love this visualization of New York City's evolving skyline from 1876-2013.  The urban landscape of America's prominent cities has changed dramatically. 


Tags: historical,urbanarchitecture, landscape, NYC.

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Louis Culotta's comment, May 1, 2013 11:32 AM
I wonder if the tallest building in the first picture is the first stage of the Brooklyn Bridge??????
Louis Culotta's curator insight, May 1, 2013 11:35 AM

if you look at the first picture...it looks like the tall building on the water could be the first stage of the Brooklyn Bridge...any suggestions to this?

Suggested by Mike Busarello's Digital Storybooks
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'Serendipitous Interaction' Key Workplace Design

'Serendipitous Interaction' Key Workplace Design | Geography Education | Scoop.it
Executives have recently focused attention on Silicon Valley's workplace culture. While companies like Google, Facebook and Yahoo operate by their own set of rules, what happens there may influence how many Americans work.
Seth Dixon's insight:

How does the spatial layout of a workplace impact productivity and corporate culture?  "Google has spent a lot of time studying what makes workplaces innovative and casual interactions are important. Sullivan lists three factors to make that set companies apart: learning by interaction, collaborations and fun."  Spaces that encourage interaction and collaboration increase productivity.  Spaces that are 'fun' help facilitate a vibrant community and deepens worker loyalty.  


Tags: spatial, architecture, labor, podcast.

 

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Sense of Place

Seth Dixon's insight:

Kunstler argues that American architecture and urban planning are not creating public places that encourage interaction and communal engagement.  We should create more distinct places that foster a sense of place that is 'worth fighting for,' as opposed to suburbia which he sees as emblematic of these problems. 


Question to Ponder: How should we design cities to create a strong sense of place?  What elements are necessary? 


Tagsurban, planning, place, architecture, suburbs, video.

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L.Long's curator insight, November 20, 2015 7:04 PM

Culture of Place

Sally Egan's curator insight, November 22, 2015 5:28 PM

Provides great example of the concepts of Place and Lieveability.

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Dropping water levels reveal hidden church

Dropping water levels reveal hidden church | Geography Education | Scoop.it
A 16th century church has emerged from the receding waters of the Nezahualcoyotl reservoir in the southern Mexican state of Chiapas. This is the second time water levels have dropped low enough to reveal the church since the reservoir was completed in 1966.


Tags: drought, Mexico, water, environment, religion, culture, Christianity,  colonialism, architecture, landscape.

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Luis Cesar Nunes's curator insight, November 4, 2015 5:59 AM

water Chiapas

www.cheapassignmenthelp.com's curator insight, November 6, 2015 5:39 AM

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New Old Town

New Old Town | Geography Education | Scoop.it

"Like many cities in Central Europe, Warsaw is made up largely of grey, ugly, communist block-style architecture. Except for one part:  The Old Town. Walking through the historic district, it’s just like any other quaint European city. There are tourist shops, horse-drawn carriage rides, church spires. The buildings are beautiful—but they are not original."

Seth Dixon's insight:

This is a compelling 99 Percent Invisible podcast linking architecture, heritage, political ideology and the built environment.  How we preserve and create place is put on trial as to when something is benign, fabricated, authentic, or simply a complicated balance between opposing forces. 


Tags: planning, architecture, urban, place,

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aitouaddaC's curator insight, August 3, 2015 8:12 AM

This is a compelling podcast linking architecture, heritage, political ideology and the built environment.  How we preserve and create place is put on trial as to when something is benign, fabricated, authentic, or simply a complicated balance between opposing forces. 

 

Tags: planning, architecture, urban, place,

Beth Marinucci's curator insight, August 3, 2015 8:45 PM

This is a compelling podcast linking architecture, heritage, political ideology and the built environment.  How we preserve and create place is put on trial as to when something is benign, fabricated, authentic, or simply a complicated balance between opposing forces. 

 

Tags: planning, architecture, urban, place,

Yolanta Krawiecki's curator insight, August 7, 2015 5:30 PM

This is a compelling podcast linking architecture, heritage, political ideology and the built environment.  How we preserve and create place is put on trial as to when something is benign, fabricated, authentic, or simply a complicated balance between opposing forces. 

 

Tags: planning, architecture, urban, place,

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99% Invisible

99% Invisible | Geography Education | Scoop.it
A Tiny Radio Show About Design with Roman Mars
Seth Dixon's insight:

I’ve recently wrote about the 99 Percent Invisible podcast and while it is not explicitly (or even always) geographic, it is loaded with excellent materials about design and the details of the world around us that often go unnoticed, but deserve greater scrutiny. 

How did design lead to the the rise and fall of the mall?   (see the oddly fascinating DeadMalls.com for photo galleries in your local area).  How did the expansion of billiards end the horrors of the ivory trade and lead to the age of plastics?  These are some of the questions that the podcast explores.    

Tagspodcast, architecture.

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99 Percent Invisible

Roman Mars is obsessed with flags — and after you watch this talk, you might be, too. These ubiquitous symbols of civic pride are often designed, well, pretty terribly. But they don't have to be. In this surprising and hilarious talk about vexillology — the study of flags — Mars reveals the five basic principles of flag design and shows why he believes they can be applied to just about anything.
Seth Dixon's insight:

I’m not ashamed to admit that I love flags; I enjoy thinking about the cultural, economic and geopolitical symbolism embedded in the flags and what that means for the places they represent.  I share the above video for that purpose, but more importantly because it is an introduction to the audio podcast 99 Percent Invisible with a special ‘behind-the-scenes’ peek and how this podcast on flag design was made (and here is a snarky critique of all U.S. state flags).  Great geography resources rarely fall under the title “Geography” with a capital G.  It takes geographic training to “see the geography” in the world around us.  I’ve recently discovered the 99 Percent Invisible Podcast and while it is not explicitly (or even always) geographic, it is loaded with excellent materials about design and the details of the world around us that often go unnoticed, but deserve greater scrutiny.  For example the episodes on the Port of Dallas as well as reversing of the Chicago River show how the physical and human systems intersect within urban areas.  These two geo-engineering projects also were conceived on in very particular social, economic and technological contexts.

I also loved the episode Monumental Dilemma, about the uncomfortable 1800s New England memorialization of Hannah Duston for scalping Native Americans…this is incredibly awkward culturally as our society and social values have changes over the years.  Do we tear it down? Ignore it?  Apologize?  Since the historical legacy is unsettled, so is the monument.  So I’ll keep listening to the 99 Percent Invisible podcast and please recommend some especially geographic past episodes as I dig through the archives.                

 

Tagspodcast, architecture, TED.

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Unkind Architecture: Designing Against the Homeless

Unkind Architecture: Designing Against the Homeless | Geography Education | Scoop.it

"Defensive architecture is revealing on a number of levels, because it is not the product of accident or thoughtlessness, but a thought process. It is a sort of unkindness that is considered, designed, approved, funded and made real with the explicit motive to exclude and harass. It reveals how corporate hygiene has overridden human considerations…"

Seth Dixon's insight:

Geography explores more than just what countries control a certain territory and what landforms are there.  Geography explores the spatial manifestations of power and how place is crafted to fit a particular vision.  Homeless people are essentially always 'out of place.'  These articles from the Society Pagesthe Atlantic and this one from the Guardian share similar things: that urban planners actively design places that will discourage loitering which is undesirable to local businesses.  This gallery shows various defensive architectural tactics to make certain people feel 'out of place.'  Just to show that not all urban designs are anti-homeless, this bench is one that is designed to help the homeless (and here is an ingenious plan to curb public urination).       

Tags: urbanplanning, architecture, landscape, place, poverty.

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Norka McAlister's curator insight, April 5, 2015 7:58 PM

The government should try to develop better methods to keep homeless out of the street. Planning and designating a place to the homeless group by offering better conditions, will change the problem.  As the architects have new ideas to resolve a problem with the homeless, they should also be formulating ideas to prevent homelessness such as providing feasible shelter on the street. Part of the problem is that shelters should be marketed in the communities. Local businesses, policies and general communities could be more active in helping these minority groups to get aid and better their life. Cities should provide more programs and aid for the homeless group. 

Eden Eaves's curator insight, May 24, 2015 8:07 PM

These structures such as benches with dividers that make it impossible to lie down, spikes and protrusions on window ledges and in front of store windows, forests of pointed cement structures under bridges and freeways, emissions of high pitched sounds, and sprinklers that intermittently go off on sidewalks to prevent camping overnight are very rude and without a shadow of a doubt send a message to the homeless that they aren't welcomed, and we will do whatever it takes to make sure they cannot be comfortable; even something as simple as sitting on a windowsill.  

Logan Haller's curator insight, May 25, 2015 7:11 PM

This article deals with unit 7 because it discusses architecture and new  things in cities. In some cities they have defensive architecture to make it harder for homeless people to live. For example benches with dividers, and pointed cement structures under bridges. This tells the homeless they are unwanted and that others don't care about them.Some corporations have turned to aggressive ways to keep out homeless and the article says the government is denying it. In addition there are few resources to help the homeless and what they do have is insufficient. It also notes that free shelters are very rare. The author says that we should worry a little more about the homeless because "given just the right turn of events, it could happen to us."

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Tourism in Belfast, Ireland

"Belfast has been coming into its own in the last few years, developing a vibrant restaurant scene, award-winning architecture and a new cosmopolitanism."


TagsIreland, culture, architecture, tourism, Europe.

Seth Dixon's insight:

Have you ever wondered why Northern Ireland a part of the U.K.?  Read this article from the Economist

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Europe’s Empty Churches Go on Sale

Europe’s Empty Churches Go on Sale | Geography Education | Scoop.it
Hundreds of churches around Europe have closed or are threatened by plunging membership, posing a question for communities: What to do with the once-holy, now-empty buildings?
Seth Dixon's insight:

Europe, the most developed region in the world, is also the most secular region today.  During colonial times, Europeans were spreading Christianity across the globe, but now Christianity is becoming more a part of Europe's historical landscape.  Secularization can be seen as either the cause or the effect of several other European trends such as declining fertility rates.  Today Europe is filled with historic cathedrals, but there is no one to fill them.


Questions to Ponder: What are other signs of secularization on the cultural landscape?  What would you do with a former sacred site (and an architectural treasure) that is can't be maintained?

 

Tags: culturereligion, Christianity, regions, landscape, Europe.

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Chris Plummer's curator insight, February 24, 2015 8:01 AM

Summary- Hundreds of churches around Europe  are being closed and sold to other people. This is due to the lack of membership coming from the people that used to go there. People are turning these churches into various things such as skateparks. I think this is a very disrespectful act, turning a place of worship into a place to destroy. 

 

Insight- In Unit 3 religion is a big part. From this article, we can ask ourselves why the memberships of churches are declining. Do be just not care anymore? Are people moving away? Although the answer is no stated in this article, I think people there are just not as devoted to church as they used to be.

Louis Mazza's curator insight, February 26, 2015 8:09 PM

Europe’s Empty churches going on sale is not upsetting to me, unless they are being used as skateboard parks. The main reason to the church’s closings are a rise in secular beliefs. With less people attending and making tributes to the churches they are given no choice but to shut down. These are buildings of great archaic integrity and I think that they should be sold to museums or to state governments as holy sites or something to that effect. These buildings should be preserved because they are a giant standing living history of this world. But as of now skate ramps and parks occupy these churches and may be damaging them. 

Edgar Manasseh Jr.'s curator insight, March 7, 2015 9:25 PM

Empty buildings now turned into just churches used for fun, or by the picture skateboarding. Europe is always known as the power house especially during their colonial period, when they colonized Africa and brought some of their religious beliefs towards the Africans. Europe is filled with big catholic traditions tracing back to the past, but now with this going on its a very sad state seeing something so significant in history in the European community go to waste..

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The Transformation of Burning Man

The Transformation of Burning Man | Geography Education | Scoop.it

"Burning Man takes place at the end of August every year in the barren and remote Black Rock Desert of Nevada. The weeklong festival is described by its organization as “an experiment in community, art, radical self-expression, and radical self-reliance.” Earth-bound photographers have chronicled the legacy of art, technology, design, and fashion at the event over the years, but we at Skybox wanted to know if we could capture the transformation of the city from space, with our constellation of SkySats. This is the result:

A full-fledged city of population 70,000, “Black Rock City” is built up in a matter of days, experienced for a single week, and disassembled just as quickly, leaving no trace."

Seth Dixon's insight:

Last week I posted about Burning Man, noting that the landscapes in this experimental culture are inherently ephemeral and fleeting.  High resolution satellite imagery has captured the quick rise and fall of the Black Rock City.  Perhaps the term 'rise and fall' might not aptly describe the formation and dismantling of a city of 70,000 people; it is more like the ebb and flow of the tide, certain to return again.  


Tags architectureimages, art, landscape, geospatial, remote sensing.

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CT Blake's curator insight, September 19, 2014 12:45 PM

An interesting view of the passage of short amounts of time and human interaction in a transitory urban scene-- Burning Man.

Nicole Kearsch's curator insight, September 21, 2014 10:12 PM

I have a friend from Nevada and he explained how excited he was to go to Burning Man and he was almost appalled when I asked what the big deal was.  I had no idea that this huge event is put up and taken down in such a short period of time, all that quick work for a weeks worth of entertainment.  The idea to document the construction and destruction through satellite was an excellent idea, as it is more meaningful to someone than writing that it was constructed in so many days and taken down in this many.  

Alec Castagno's curator insight, September 23, 2014 11:39 AM

Burning Man is a massive and creative counterculture festival, and its surprising to learn that the majority of the camps are created by participants of the festival in whatever manner they choose. It is amazing that such a huge number of people can flock to such a remote location and in a very short amount of time build a complex, organized settlement, all for the purpose of a festival dedicated to independence and expression. What is popularly seen as a drugged out Mecca for the weird is carried out in a shockingly complex manner, and by working with the local infrastructure and providing one of their own the festival is able to be carried out year after year.

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How Cities Use Design to Drive Homeless People Away

How Cities Use Design to Drive Homeless People Away | Geography Education | Scoop.it

"Saying 'you're not welcome here'—with spikes."

Seth Dixon's insight:

Geography explores more than just what countries control a certain territory and what landforms are there.  Geography explores the spatial manifestations of power and how place is crafted to fit a particular vision.  Homeless people are essentially always 'out of place.'  This article from the Atlantic and this one from the Guardian share similar things: that urban planners actively design places that will discourage loitering which is undesirable to local businesses.  This gallery shows various defensive architectural tactics to make certain people feel 'out of place.'  Just to show that not all urban designs are anti-homeless, this bench is one that is designed to help the homeless.     


Tags: urbanplanning, architecture, landscape, place.

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Michael MacNeil's curator insight, August 2, 2014 8:38 AM

Lack of understanding of mental disability can lead to heartlessness. There is so much that needs to be done.

dilaycock's curator insight, August 3, 2014 3:50 AM

I'd never really taken notice, or heard of some,  of the architectural deterrents mentioned here. I can't believe that we, as a society, go to such lengths to make life even more difficult for those already struggling. 

MsPerry's curator insight, August 12, 2014 6:52 PM

APHG-U7

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Muslims around the world celebrate the birth of Mohammed

Muslims around the world celebrate the birth of Mohammed | Geography Education | Scoop.it

"Muslims around the world celebrate the birth of the Islamic Prophet Muhammed, who was born in Mecca, Saudi Arabia in 570 AD. His birthday is marked in way ways is different Muslim countries."  

Seth Dixon's insight:

This is a great photo gallery, but I wanted to make a special note of this image.  The caption for this picture says, "Egyptians watch as Muslims march on the street to mark the birthday of the Prophet Muhammed in Cairo, Jan 13, 2014."  Is this a representative group of Egyptians?  What demographic group would we expect to see in the second story balcony?  What does the architecture tell us about the cultural norms of the society?

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Lauren Stahowiak's curator insight, March 26, 2014 2:50 PM

Muslims rejoice, celebrate and honor Mohammed around the world on his birthday. These photos not only represent the celebrations of Mohammed but mark his lasting legacy and influence as an Islamic Prophet.

Tracy Galvin's curator insight, May 5, 2014 2:53 PM

It is nice to see a depiction of the celebrations and happiness of Muslims instead of just violence by radicals. Muslims are frequently misrepresented by the heavy news coverage of the tiny amount of evildoers. It would be like depicting all of the US as Klan members.

Jacob Crowell's curator insight, November 4, 2014 1:52 PM

Women and Men in some Islamic countries live entirely different lives in regards to their geographic spheres. The women dominate the private sphere, they are sheltered from the public sphere. Their architecture reflects that fact. Windows and balconies are constructed so people can see out but not see in from the street. Homes are built so the houses across from one another are not lined up with the front doors directly across from one another. Streets are winding and made so the homes are extremely private. This reflects society in regards to how people view gender. Females are kept out of the public sphere and when they do venture out into the streets, they are encouraged to have a male escorting them. This image above shows the balcony as a barrier keeping females "protected" from the public sphere.

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Ultra-Dense Housing

Ultra-Dense Housing | Geography Education | Scoop.it
Hong Kong is one of the most densely populated areas in the world. Seven million people living in 423 square miles (1,096 sq km).
Seth Dixon's insight:

These apartments are so small that they can only be photographed from the ceiling.  Massive urbanization with limited space means that real estate is at a premium and many laborers will not be able to afford large living spaces.  Hong Kong is an extreme example of this and it brings new meaning to the term "high-density housing." 


Tagshousing, urban, planning, density, urbanism, unit 7 cities.

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Joseph Thacker 's curator insight, April 15, 2014 5:57 PM

Wow, I cannot imagine living in these conditions. It looks smaller than a prison cell; only people pay to live there. These extreme living conditions are a result of over population in an area. It seems the city of Hong Kong is running out of places to build and house the abundance of people living there. It appears the average person in Hong Kong lives in these conditions due to the high price tags on larger apartments. This is a sad reality.   

Jess Deady's curator insight, May 1, 2014 11:06 AM

Living in such close quarters must be incredibly hard to do for those people who are new to Hong Kong and know something different. For Chinese residents, this is normal. Living in such small areas is a part of the Chinese daily life and culture. China is so population dense that this is the result of living there, tiny living spaces.

James Hobson's curator insight, October 6, 2014 3:47 PM

(in-class 4: Hong Kong)

What I take away from this is the theme of supply and demand. Though these condiions seem stereotypically negative, it seems like those who live in the photographed homes are relatvely well off (food, TV, clothing, etc.). This supports the view that living in these tight conditions is less of a choice and more of something that has to be put up with. Now that Hong Kong has been developed 'across', it'd be a good guess to say that recently investments have been made to build 'up' with highrises and skyscrapers (unless like Dubai they sat to mak either own islands, whic geographically would be less likely here). The questionof sustainability is also an issue, i.e. at what point will it be impossible to cram in any more inhabitants? I wonder if a future migration / spreading-out into other areas has started to occur yet or will soon, like the suburbanization which occured in the U.S. after the advent of the automobile. If so, would it be mainland China, despite the political tensions?