The David Ramsey Map Collection announced another increase - over 15,000 new maps have been added. A site to be visited with some caution as it is too easy to spend a few hours on a visit.
German Invasion Plans for England, Wales, and Ireland in WW II). Militargeographische Einzelandgaben uber England. Militargeographische Objektkarten mit Objektbilden 1, The Border, Inhaltsangabe umseitig. Generalstab des Heeres, (Military High Command). Abtellung fur Kriegskrten und Vermessungswesen (IV. Mil.-Geo.), Berlin 1940-1942
Oberkommando der Wehrmacht (OKW) (Nazi German Supreme Command of the Armed Forces), Berlin
In preparing to invade Britain, the German military preparations included the production in 1940-1942 of a series of military/geographical assessments, showing what might be found by those arriving. This material was also used in a military evaluation of the regions of the British Isles, and considered each from the viewpoint of invasion. The full assessment consists of eleven folders for England and Wales with separate folders for Ireland, London, and the South Coast of England. Each folder contains large scale town plans marked with strategic locations, a book of photographs and a quarter-inch map of the area, each folder titled “Militärgeographisch e Einzelangaben über England” (Maps of England showing features of military significance) and “Militärgeographisch e Objektkarten mit Objektbildern” (Maps of military installations with photographs.” Also there are three thick A5 sized folders containing books and maps: Folder A : England and Wales, on a regional basis with numerous photographs and maps; Folder B : London, photographs and maps; and Folder C : Books of coastal photographs to help with selecting invasion beaches. In addition, there is material on the planned invasion of Ireland - Operation Green (Unternehmen Grün). There are 144 six-inch town maps marked with strategic locations, and almost 1500 black and white photographs. The maps are copies of Ordnance Survey maps, with overprints highlighting sites which the Germans would have considered targets in any invasion. Most maps and books are headed: “Nur für den Dienstgebrauch!” (For Official use only.) We will be placing this collection online in the coming months.
The California Water Atlas was publishing in 1979 to serve as a reference guide and backgrounder to the state's water issues. I've seen a real copy - a beautiful book and map set. One was scanned and put online by the David Rumsey Map Collection. If you have the bandwidth and a large monitor I recommend the high resolution version on the largest monitor you have.
An excerpt from Touch: The Science of Hand, Heart and Mind, by David J. Linden via SciAm
The main active ingredient in mint is menthol, while its equivalent in chili peppers is a chemical called capsaicin. Less potent chili peppers, like the Anaheim, have a low concentration of capsaicin, while very strong ones, like the Bhut Jolokia pepper, can produce about one‑thousand‑fold more. So why are we biologically predisposed to perceive menthol as cool and capsaicin as hot? One possibility is that there’s a class of nerve ending in the skin that can sense cooling and a different class that can respond to menthol. The signals conveyed by these distinct fibers could then ultimately converge in the brain: Mint and cooling might feel the same because they activate the same brain region dedicated to the sensation of cooling. In an analogous fashion, separate heat‑sensing and capsaicin‑sensing nerve fibers could ultimately send their impulses to a heat‑sensitive brain region.
This hypothesis, therefore, rests on signal convergence in the somatosensory cortex, and while it’s reasonable and appealing, it’s actually dead wrong. How do we know that? First, we can record electrical signals from single sensory nerve fibers in the arm that respond to both heat and capsaicin, and other single nerve fibers that respond to both menthol and cooling. These show that temperature and chemical signals are present in the neurons that innervate the skin long before any signals reach the brain. We also have some molecular evidence. There are free nerve endings in the epidermal layer of the skin that contain a sensor on their outer membrane called TRPV1. This single protein molecule can respond to both heat and capsaicin by opening an ion channel, a pore that lets positive ions flow inside, thereby causing the sensory neuron to fire electrical spikes. Similarly, there are free nerve endings that contain a different sensor, called TRPM8, that can respond to both menthol and cooling. The answer to our puzzle is that the metaphor is not in the culture, or even in the brain region. The metaphor is encoded within the sensor molecules in the nerve endings of the skin.
When you’re a first-time parent, something perverse happens that makes you seem like a visitor to your own culture. In the first year of my son’s life, I found myself pondering things like baby rattles. Where do they come from? Why do we give rattles to babies? Are there cultures where babies don’t get rattles? (Indeed, there are.)
At precisely the moment that I was worrying about my cultural performance of parenthood, I stumbled across mention of “The Anthropology of Childhood” on a blog and got a copy. I was immediately taken. The book does not render judgments, like other parenting books we know. “My goal is to offer a correction to the ethnocentric lens that sees children only as precious, innocent and preternaturally cute cherubs,” Professor Lancy writes. “I hope to uncover something close to the norm for children’s lives and those of their caretakers.”
That norm is that children are expected to earn their keep, starting at a very early age (or they are tolerated as semi-supernatural forces, the “changelings” of the book’s title). Worldwide, there is little formal schooling; most knowledge is learned through play and imitation. Kids may spend more time overseen by older siblings than adults. Fathers have very little to do with their children. And adults in most cultures rarely, if ever, play with their children as extensively as we do with ours.
Admission into the “Big Three” was fairly easy if the applicant possessed a “manly, Christian character.” He had to pass subject-based entrance exams devised by the colleges, but the tests weren’t particularly hard, and he could take them over and over again to pass. Even if a student didn’t pass the required exams, he could be admitted with “conditions.” Once enrolled at Harvard, Yale, or Princeton, he would focus primarily on his social life, clubs, sports, social organizations, and campus activities, while often ignoring his academic work.
Admissions began to change, however, when Charles William Eliot became president of Harvard in 1869. Annoyed with “the stupid sons of the rich,” Eliot sought to draw into the university’s fold capable students from all segments of society. To ensure that smart students could attend Harvard regardless of their means, Eliot, in 1898, abolished the archaic Greek admission exams that were popular up until that time. He also replaced Harvard’s admissions exams with exams created by the College Entrance Examination Board because it tripled the number of locations where applicants could be tested. The result of Eliot’s changes was the admission of more public school students, including Catholics and Jews.