The world through Strange Maps

I’ve talked about my fascination with maps and geography in the past on this blog. Whether its my various posts on the wonders of Google Earth, or my discussions of borders and satellite photography, I’ve always had a fascination with the way we, as humans, have mapped the space around us. One of the things that seems remarkably human is the ability to abstract the space around us into convenient maps that both simplify and extend the real space we live in. Even something as mundane as a city road map is at once a simplified abstraction of a very complex real-world space, and also an extension of the complexity of that space through a conceptualized version of the real-world network of roads and buildings and other bits of interest. Maps remove the the complexity we don’t need, and enhance the complexity that is vital to us for that purpose.

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End of a Long Couple of Weeks

Well, I’m done with work for awhile. Its been a VERY long haul, and a bit different from what I normally do. I haven’t actually been doing much to support the active exercise thats been going on out there the past couple weeks … instead I’ve been participating in some testing of new additions to the system to enhance training capabilities. Its remarkable how exhausting simply sitting at a desk working with computers can be when you do it for 16 days in a row, for a total of 180+ hours, but having said that, everyone else I was working with was doing the same sort of hours over the same period, often with far more physically demanding roles, so its hard for me to complain much about it. Still, I’m glad its over … I’m glad we did it and it was successful, but I am very glad its over as well. I have a final report to prepare today, which I can do from home, and I have a couple of weeks off.

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15 Down, 1 to go …

Its been a long stretch of work this time, and its not quite over yet even, lol. One more day to go, and I should get some time off. I haven’t really had any time to do much of anything beyond work, but I have run across a few ideas for future posts, including one on an amazing, fascinating strange map blog I found recently … perhaps its dangerous to be feeding my geo-porn addiction, but I can’t help it.

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Sunsets and Blossoms … summer in Alberta

Not that I’ve had much time to enjoy it. I wanted to post a comment yesterday about the Summer Solstice … whether its the history, the astronomy, the time, the monuments, or any of the other fascinating aspects of the Solstice, the beginning of summer has been an important date to humans probably for as long as humans have been humans. Unfortunately, I worked 14 hours of it, so I didn’t have much time to write anything. I did have a little bit of time to wander around with my camera for a few minutes near dusk however, so I thought I’d post a few of those to compensate for missing the actual Solstice on here.

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Free Speech not tolerated in Saskatchewan schools

A Saskatchewan honours student is facing a final report card of bare passes after being suspended from school during the final exam time range, and therefore being unable to write his exams and getting zero for all final exams. That he is still passing all his classes is an indication of the very high marks he had prior to being suspended. What is most remarkable, however, is the reason he was suspended.

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Murder most foul …

There’s a story going on in the sleepy little city I live in. At 57000 people, Medicine Hat is a small city even by Canadian standards, and its pretty rare that national or international stories unfold here. Currently, however, the trial of a 13 year old girl is ongoing, in the brutal stabbing murder of her family. Its a story that is almost impossible to fathom and has gained a fair amount of attention from elsewhere in the world.

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Opus at Salon

In my early adulthood, there were several cartoonists whose work had a great deal of impact on me. Bill Waterson‘s Calvin and Hobbes was a huge influence on me as a young adult, as was Gary Larson‘s The Far Side. But at least as important to me at the time, if not moreso, was Berke Breathed‘s strip Bloom County.

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