“ Drawing borders feels like an anachronism that was the domain of 19th-century diplomats, but Crimea shows that national boundaries still aren't considered fixed in many parts of the world.”
“Nepali Times is an English-language weekly newspaper published by Himalmedia Private Limited. It provides Nepal News, News of Nepal, News on Business, economics & more news from including depth reporting, expert commentaries and analysis on Nepal.”
Via Frank Kusters
Greg Hill's insight:
India is also a leading exporter of human hair also known as "Remy"
"Why analysts touting Ukraine's East-West division are just plain wrong."This neat picture [of East/West divisions] becomes muddled in the environs of Luhansk and Donetsk. For example, the official website of the Bilokurakyn district of Luhansk province (which borders Russia) is in Ukrainian, and the website's sentiments are distinctly anti-Yanukovych. The countryside and smaller towns of both provinces tend to speak Ukrainian and practice Ukrainian culture. And even in the cities themselves, the vast majority of the population -- minus the pro-Russian chauvinists -- will happily engage Ukrainian speakers in conversation. One Ukrainian history professor at Donetsk State University has been conducting all his lectures in Ukrainian for over a decade. At first some students grumbled -- and he responded by pointing out that if they lack the intellectual ability to understand Ukrainian, they shouldn't be university students. Since then, there have been no complaints and no problems.Go to Lviv in the West, and you encounter similar subtleties. The vast majority of Lviv residents are at least proficient in Russian, gladly speak the language, read Russian newspapers and books, and watch Russian television. If a radio is playing in a restaurant or café, chances are as high that it'll be tuned to a Russian station rather than a Ukrainian one. Lviv is especially popular with Russian tourists, who like it for its Middle European feel, old architecture, and Ukrainian distinctiveness. A favorite Russian watering hole is the Kryyivka (Bunker) restaurant, modeled after the underground hideouts used by anti-Soviet Ukrainian nationalists after World War II.
Via Seth Dixon
“After months of extremely dry weather, a Sacramento-area lake has pulled a massive disappearing act.”California just suffered its driest year in 119 years, and the horrid drought that's plaguing the state (and much of the American West) still shows no sign of relaxing its withering grip. But how bad is it, really?Well, it's so dry that "grass-fed beef" is becoming "grain-fed beef," as ranchers can't find any grass to feed their cattle. Things are so parched that the state's municipal water system has announced it can't get water to many farmers. That's a first in its 54-year history, and not a good omen for the state that produces half of America's vegetables and fruits.
Via Seth Dixon
“A Human Geography Resource; Especially for Teachers”The Human Imprint is home to everything Human Geography related for the student, educator, and the every day Joe/Jane. This site includes geographic related stories, lesson plans, and other links that bring us closer to understanding the “why of where.”
Via Seth Dixon
“Why Spaniards have dinner so late? A map of the difference between solar time and clock time around the world.”I edited a world map from Wikipedia to show the difference between solar and standard time. It turns out, there are many places where the sun rises and sets late in the day, like in Spain, but not a lot where it is very early (highlighted in red and green in the map, respectively). Most of Russia is heavily red, but mostly in zones with very scarce population; the exception is St. Petersburg, with a discrepancy of two hours, but the effect on time is mitigated by the high latitude. The most extreme example of Spain-like time is western China: the difference reaches three hours against solar time. For example, today the sun rises there at 10:15 and sets at 19:45, and solar noon is at 15:01.
Via Seth Dixon
“ The city has a lot of abandoned buildings, and to decide which ones should be demolished, the federal government and some major foundations started a massive, high-tech mapping project. The new mayor says that's just what he needs to improve the neighborhoods.”
Via Marc Crawford , Mankato East High School
“ Crimean members of Parliament have voted to secede from Ukraine and join Russia, taking the very step Ukraine's interim government has been fearing since tensions arose in the region. ”
Via Allison Anthony, Dustin Fowler
It seems like one reason why Russia’s actions in Crimea appear so jarring and brazen is that it’s a form of warfare that was once common but rarely take place anymore. Russia may not formally annex Crimea – it seems more likely that the territory will declare independence under heavy Russian influence – but it has essentially invaded another country to lob off a piece of territory that was, despite longstanding nationalist sentiment, an undisputed part of Ukraine.
Historically speaking, conflicts in which one country sends troops into the territory to take over a disputed region are pretty common. But today, interstate war is relatively rare, and interstate wars over control of territory even rarer. For the most part, conflicts today usually take place between armed groups within states, and when one country does send troops into another – the U.S. in Iraq and Afghanistan, for instance – it’s generally under the assumption that sooner or later they will pull out, leaving borders as they are.
It’s time for some levelheaded talk about that ostensibly endless stretch of flatness some denigrate as “flyover country” and others respectfully call 'Kansas.' The alleged monotony of the Sunflower State’s terrain is referenced about as often as “The Wizard of Oz” when Kansas pops up into conversation. “It’s truly engrained,” said Jerry Dobson, professor of geography at the University of Kansas. “Every Kansan hears again and again, when new visitors arrive, ‘I’m surprised. This place is not as flat as I expected.’By any measure, Florida takes the prize for the flattest state in the nation becuase the highest point in the state is only 345 feet above sea level. Then Illinois, North Dakota, Louisiana, Minnesota and Delaware follow. Kansas merely ranks seventh in flatness.
Via Seth Dixon
Reuters photographer Carlos Barria recently spent time in Shanghai, China, the fastest-growing city in the world. A week ago, he took this amazing shot, recreating the same framing and perspective as a photograph taken in 1987, showing what a difference 26 years can make. The setting is Shanghai's financial district of Pudong, dominated by the Oriental Pearl Tower at left, and the new 125-story Shanghai Tower, China's tallest building and the world's second tallest skyscraper, at 632 meters (2,073 ft) high, scheduled to finish by the end of 2014. Shanghai, the largest city by population in the world, has been growing at a rate of about 10 percent a year the past 20 years, and now is home to 23.5 million people -- nearly double what it was back in 1987. This entry is focused on this single photo pairing, with several ways to compare the two.
Via Seth Dixon