"During the past two years, Kien Lam went on the kind of trip most could only dream about. The photographer wanted to "see as much of the world as possible," so he visited 15 countries around the globe, from Mexico to New Zealand, snapping more than 10,000 photographs along the way. He edited his work together to make this stupendous time-lapse, which may be one of the most envy-inducing travel diaries I've ever seen."
"There’s nothing more irritating to a pedant’s ear and nothing more flabbergasting than realizing you’ve been pronouncing the name of so many places wrong, your entire life! Despite the judgment we exhibit toward people who err in enunciating, we all mispronounce a word from time to time, despite our best efforts. Well, now it’s time we can really stop mispronouncing the following places."
New figures show the lowest total number of births since the formation of the modern Italian state
Fewer babies were born in Italy in 2014 than in any other year since the modern Italian state was formed in 1861, new data show, highlighting the demographic challenge faced by the country’s chronically sluggish economy. National statistics office ISTAT said on Thursday the number of live births last year was 509,000, or 5,000 fewer than in 2013, rounding off half a century of decline. The number of babies born to both natives and foreigners living in Italy dropped as immigration, which used to support the overall birth rate, tumbled to its lowest level for five years.
"Walk along the streets of London and it’s not uncommon to hear a variety of langauges jostling for space in your eardrums. Step inside a tube carriage on the underground and the story is no different.
Oliver O’Brien, researcher in geovisualisation and web mapping at University College London’s department of geography, has created a map showing what the most common second language (after English) is at certain tube stops across the capital.
Using a map of tube journeys and busy stations that he had previously created, O’Brien used 2011 Census data to add the second most commonly spoken language that people who live nearby speak."
Take a tour through America's immigrant heritage — at its most and least welcoming
American politicians, and Americans themselves, love to call themselves "a nation of immigrants": a place where everyone's family has, at some point, chosen to come to seek freedom or a better life. America has managed to maintain that self-image through the forced migration of millions of African slaves, restrictive immigration laws based on fears of "inferior" races, and nativist movements that encouraged immigrants to assimilate or simply leave.
But while the reality of America's immigrant heritage is more complicated than the myth, it's still a fundamental truth of the country's history. It's impossible to understand the country today without knowing who's been kept out, who's been let in, and how they've been treated once they arrive.
"Windows on Earth is an educational project that features photographs taken by astronauts on the International Space Station. Astronauts take hundreds of photos each day, for science research, education and public outreach. The photos are often dramatic, and help us all appreciate home planet Earth. These images help astronauts share their experience, and help you see Earth from a global perspective."
"Prior to the 1960’s, the Aral Sea was the fourth largest lake and approximately the size of Ireland. Fed by both the Amu Darya and Syr Darya rivers carrying snowmelt from the mountains to the southeast, the Aral Sea moderated the climate and provided a robust fishing industry that straddled the present-day border between Kazakhstan and Uzbekistan. For the map savvy, that Aral Sea would be almost unrecognizable—it has long appeared as two basins known as the North and the South Aral Sea since the rivers were diverted for crops, leading to the Aral Sea’s alarming shrinkage. Recent NASA satellite imagery shows the decline that the Aral Sea has undergone since 2000, leaving the South Aral Sea completely dried up in 2014. "
"For months, publishing giant HarperCollins has been selling an atlas it says was developed specifically for schools in the Middle East. It trumpets the work as providing students an 'in-depth coverage of the region and its issues. Its stated goals include helping kids understand the 'relationship between the social and physical environment, the region’s challenges [and] its socio-economic development.' Nice goals. But there’s one problem: Israel is missing."
Many urban neighborhoods are places of concentrated poverty, and it's killing opportunity in the US.
American cities are growing, and as they grow, they're adding lots of high-poverty neighborhoods. Nearly three times as many "high-poverty" census tracts existed in 2010 as in 1970. That's unsettling on its face but even more so when you see the havoc a poor neighborhood can wreak on a resident's chances at a good life. Forget gentrification — this is a bigger problem.
The chart above tallies up the people living in these neighborhoods in 1970 and 2010. What it shows is that the number of people living in high-poverty neighborhoods — those with poverty rates of 30 percent or more — has roughly doubled since 1970. That's because these neighborhoods of concentrated poverty have a tendency to stay that way, even while new ones sprout up.
What if the Black Plague had killed off almost all Europeans? Then the Reconquista never happens. Spain and Portugal don't kickstart Europe's colonization of other continents. And this is what Africa might have looked like.
Canada is a massive country, yet it has one of the lowest population densities in the world. Despite this, Canadians have made a wide impact on their land, much of it visible from aerial and satellite photography. Hydroelectric facilities, roads, mines, farms, ports, resource exploration, logging, canals, cities, and towns have altered much of the landscape over the years.
"This is a film by the Chicago Board Of Education, produced sometime in the 1940s. This film could have been geared towards tourism or to entice companies to come to Chicago or used in the classroom. The great thing about this film reel, is all the different views of the city they give."
"China is in the midst of a crackdown on what it describes as 'terrorism driven by religious extremism'. The campaign is focused on the western province of Xinjiang, home to China's Uighur ethnic minority who are predominantly Muslim."
Elwood was a senior geographer working on the ground-floor of the very global positioning systems (GPS) and geographic information systems (GIS) he will throw up for discussion in his TEDx talk.
His question: Are we surrendering our innate mental map making abilities to technology and relying on and trusting it too much? And for TEDx audiences only, he’ll toss out ideas on ways to prevent that from happening.
The Industrial Revolution gets credit for kicking off the world's human population explosion, but new research suggests we should look further back.
“If you dig further in the past," Stutz told Emory University, "the data suggest that a critical threshold of political and economic organization set the stage around the start of the Common Era. The resulting political-economic balance was the tipping point for economies of scale: It created a range of opportunities enabling more people to get resources, form successful families, and generate enough capital to transfer to the next generation.”
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