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Archive for February, 2010

19 February
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You Camouflaged my Battleship!

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Seen in the center of the image is the ABRAHAM CRIJNSSEN, covered in branches and made to look like an island.  The captain of the vessel did this to evade capture after the battle of the Java Sea in Feb. 1942 during WWII.  They went right through Japanese naval lines in this disguise.

Image credit: Historic Naval Ships Association

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18 February
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Test Your Olympic Knowledge

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Take this quiz and see how your Olympic knowledge stacks up.  Let me know if you want more quizzes like this in the future by posting your comment at the bottom of this post.

Where were the first modern Summer Olympics held?





In the first Olympic Winter Games, who won a Silver Medal in the 5000m speed skating event and a Gold Medal in the 10,000m speed skating event?





During which Olympic Games did the IOC first join the West Germany and East Germany teams into the Germany team?





Which of the following is Spain's IOC country code?





How many men athletes competed in the 1948 London Summer Games?





In-between what two dates were the 1992 Barcelona Summer Olympics held?





On February 12, 2010, luger Nodar Kumaritashvili died after crashing, flying over a wall, and hitting his head on a metal support beam on the Whistler Sliding Center in Vancouver, Canada. Which country was he competing for?





Which city hosted New York's first-ever Olympic Games?





In 1980 Lake Placid Games, the USA men's ice hockey team beat the USSR 4-3 in the round-robin tournament. What was this game nicknamed?





How many nations competed in the 2004 Athens Summer Games?







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17 February
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Oral History

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Found this on the AHA site.  Its a list of oral history project websites.

Image credit: Editor B

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16 February
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Thanks Neil!

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Hi
have just found your podcast and site. Enjoying the 3 I have heard so far – Rosa Luxemburg, Bobby Kennedy and Dien Bien Phu.  I’m a History teacher in the Uk and have recommended it to my students too.
Keep it up.
Neil

Hi

have just found your podcast and site. Enjoying the 3 I have heard so far – Rosa Luxemburg, Bobby Kennedy and Dien Bien Phu.  I’m a History teacher in the Uk and have recommended it to my students too.

Keep it up.

Neil

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16 February
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Harry Truman

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I recently found this short audio clip on This I Believe.  Here is a short description below.  Follow the link to listen to the audio.

President Harry Truman explains the beliefs that influenced his two decades of public service, and he encourages Americans to correct the remaining imperfections in our democracy. [This I Believe]

Image credit:  Wiki Commons

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14 February
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Federal Air Marshals

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Did you know you might have been sitting next to a person with a gun on your last flight?  What if I told you they had that gun on the flight legally.  Air Marshals have been flying with us since 1963.    On 9/11/2001 there were only 33 Federal Air Marshals active.  Now, although the official number is classified, the number is believed to be in the thousands.  The current budget for Air Marshals is 800 million annually.  Federal air marshals rollup under the TSA.

How many terrorists did the FAMs stop with this $800 million? Zero, according to a CNN Special Investigation (though agents did make four arrests last year – which averages some $200 million per arrest). OC Register

Read more about the federal air marshal program at wikipedia.

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14 February
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Happy Valentine’s Day

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I hope all of you out there have a great and romantic Valentine’s Day!

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13 February
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Vestmannaeyjar, Iceland

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UPDATE:  This is one of the most popular post on my site here.  It seems that google has chosen the image above to display when users search for “Vestmannaeyjar”.  So if you’ve come from that search you are sondering about this particular island and less about the island chain.  First thats not Bjork’s house.  The above island is called Elliðaey.  Iceland has two islands by this name.  The island above is part of the Westman archipelago (Vestmannaeyjar in Icelandic) off of Iceland’s southern coast. In 1953 the Elliðaey Hunting Association built a lodge on the island for its members to use.  The lodge has no electricity or indoor plumbing. It does have a sauna. The water for the sauna comes from a rain collection system.

There are a few websites that claim that Iceland gave the island (and the lodge) to Bjork.  Well, it almost happened.  See the below from a 2000 article in The Independent (its no longer available online:

Title: Iceland balks at island freebie for Bjork

Author(s): Sonya Procenko

Source: The Independent (London, England). (Feb. 10, 2000): News: p15.

Document Type: Brief article

Full Text: COPYRIGHT 2000 Independent Print Ltd.

http://www.independent.co.uk/

Full Text:

THE ICELANDIC singer Bjork may have put her nation on the map, but plans to grant her exclusive use of an uninhabited island off the west coast to reward her for her services have run into difficulties.

Earlier this week David Oddsson, Prime Minister, told parliament: “Bjork has done more for the popularity of Iceland than most other Icelanders. My view is that she may be given the use of this island [Ellidaey] as a royalty payment, as recognition from the state.”

But, amid an uproar in the country, the government has had to reconsider its generosity. Yesterday Mr Oddsson’s office denied Ellidaey had been sold or leased to the singer.

If sold, said a spokesman, it would be only to the highest bidder. Icelandic radio reported rumours that the musician was no longer interested in the island. She has neither confirmed nor denied reports and was not available for comment yesterday.

Despite her much-professed love for Iceland, Bjork is neither based there full-time nor does she sing in Icelandic.

Last year she approached the prime minister about living part of the year and building a home on Ellidaey, Mr Oddsson’s spokesman said. The state “might” permit the singer to live on the island rent-free or at a low rent, depending on “market interest”. In the event of a sale, she would not be given preferential treatment.

“Bjork is a very well-known person in the world, especially in the music world. She’s also an active player in the social life of Iceland … She is very focused on promoting her mother country. Knowledge of Iceland has risen dramatically since she began her successful career as a musician.” No one, he insisted, was queuing to rent or buy the two-mile-wide island. Ellidaey is one of two islands, along with Malmey, which Iceland may decide to sell this year. There are hundreds of islands, many uninhabited, off Iceland.

Source Citation   (MLA 7th Edition)

Procenko, Sonya. “Iceland balks at island freebie for Bjork.” Independent [London, England] 10 Feb. 2000: 15. Popular Magazines. Web. 24 June 2013.

Vestmannaeyjar is a small archipelago off the south coast of Iceland. The largest island, Heimaey, has a population of 4,036. The other islands are uninhabited, though two have single hunting cabins. Read more about it at Wikipedia.org.

More information:

Internet:

How to pronounce Vestmannaeyjar

http://playingintheworldgame.wordpress.com/2013/03/10/ellidaey-iceland/

http://travel.spotcoolstuff.com/iceland/secluded-architecture/ellidaey-island

Further Reading:

Vestmannaeyjar Westman Islands – The story of the volcanic eruption of 1973 and the attempt to resettle the island. Has before and after photos.

Lonely Planet Iceland (Travel Guide)

Paradise Reclaimed – An idealistic Icelandic farmer journeys to Mormon Utah and back in search of paradise in this captivating novel by Nobel Prize—winner Halldor Laxness.  The quixotic hero of this long-lost classic is Steinar of Hlidar, a generous but very poor man who lives peacefully on a tiny farm in nineteenth-century Iceland with his wife and two adoring young children. But when he impulsively offers his children’s beloved pure-white pony to the visiting King of Denmark, he sets in motion a chain of disastrous events that leaves his family in ruins and himself at the other end of the earth, optimistically building a home for them among the devout polygamists in the Promised Land of Utah. By the time the broken family is reunited, Laxness has spun his trademark blend of compassion and comically brutal satire into a moving and spellbinding enchantment, composed equally of elements of fable and folkore and of the most humble truths.

Top Image from: Pixdaus: Popular Today Pics

Bottom Image from:  michael clarke stuff

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12 February
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Space Station Tour

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The International Space Station represents a union of several national space station projects that originated during the Cold War. In the early 1980s, NASA planned to launch a modular space station called Freedom as a counterpart to the Soviet Salyut and Mir space stations, while the Soviets were planning to construct Mir-2 in the 1990s as a replacement for Mir. Because of budget and design constraints, Freedom never progressed past mock-ups and minor component tests. [wikipedia]

You can follow the astronouts on the space station via twitter now:  Soichi, Jeff, and TJ.  Watch a tour below:

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11 February
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How to Podcast

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I found two great videos on how to podcast via Podcasting News. See the embedded videos below.

Podcasting Basics from Brent Powell on Vimeo.

Podcasting 101 from Teknologikally on Vimeo.

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