Archive for ‘World’

November 15, 2021

Season Creep

Phenology

In phenology (the study of cyclic and seasonal natural phenomena), season creep refers to observed changes in the timing of the seasons, such as earlier indications of spring in temperate areas across the Northern Hemisphere.

In Europe, season creep has been associated with the arrival of spring moving up by approximately one week in a recent 30-year period. Climate studies have put the rate of season creep measured by plant phenology in the range of 2–3 days per decade advancement in spring, and 0.3–1.6 days per decade delay in autumn, over the past 30–80 years.

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October 19, 2021

Rhinoceros Party

Rhinoceros Party

The Rhinoceros Party is a Canadian federal-level satirical political party founded by Canadian political figure and entertainer François ‘Yo’ Gourd and led by Sébastien Côrriveau.

It was a registered political party in Canada from the 1960s. Operating within the tradition of political satire, the Rhinoceros Party’s basic credo, their so-called primal promise, was ‘a promise to keep none of our promises.’ They then promised outlandishly impossible schemes designed to amuse and entertain the voting public.

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September 16, 2021

Fixer

The Wolf

fixer is a person who is skillful at solving problems for others. In American usage, to describe a person as a fixer implies that their methods may be of questionable legality. In sports, a fixer is someone who makes (usually illegal) arrangements to fix, i.e., manipulate or pre-arrange the outcome of a sporting contest.

In British usage the term is neutral, meaning ‘the sort of person who solves problems and gets things done.’ In journalism, a fixer is a local person who expedites the work of a correspondent working in a foreign country.

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August 17, 2021

Graveyard of Empires

The Great Game

Graveyard of Empires is a sobriquet associated with Afghanistan. It originates from the alleged historical tendency for foreign powers to fail in their invasions of the country. It is unclear who coined the phrase, and its historical accuracy has been disputed.

Several superpowers have attempted to invade Afghanistan without maintaining a stable, permanent rule. Modern examples included the British Empire during the first and Third Anglo-Afghan Wars (1839-1842, 1919), the Soviet Union in the Soviet–Afghan War (1979-1989) and the United States in the War in Afghanistan (2001-2021).

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August 12, 2021

Gopnik

slav squat

gopnik is a member of a slavic subculture stereotyped as prone to hooliganism. Gopota are often seen squatting in groups ‘in court’ or ‘doing the crab’ with their heels on the ground, a behavior attributed to Soviet prison culture and avoidance of sitting on the cold ground.

The subculture of gopota has its roots in the late Russian Empire and evolved during the 20th century in many cities in the Soviet Union. By the late 2010s, it had faded for the most part, although youth gangs (such as the A.U.E.) that resemble gopota still exist in Russia and in other Slavic and Baltic countries.

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August 2, 2021

CowParade

Brooklyn cow

CowParade is an international public art exhibit where fiberglass sculptures of cows are decorated by local artists and distributed in public places. After the exhibition in a city, which may last many months, the statues are auctioned off and the proceeds donated to charity.

They often feature artwork and designs specific to local culture, as well as city life and other relevant themes. There are a few variations of shape, but the three most common shapes of cow were created by Pascal Knapp, a Swiss-born sculptor who was commissioned to create the cows specifically for the CowParade. He owns the copyrights to the standing, lying, and grazing cow shapes used.

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July 29, 2021

Fugu

pufferfish

Fugu [foo-goo] is a pufferfish or porcupinefish dish originating in Japan. Fugu can be lethally poisonous to humans due to its tetrodotoxin, meaning it must be carefully prepared to remove toxic parts and to avoid contaminating the meat.

The restaurant preparation of fugu is strictly controlled by law in Japan and several other countries, and only chefs who have qualified after three or more years of rigorous training are allowed to prepare the fish. Domestic preparation occasionally leads to accidental death.

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July 7, 2021

ESG

Principles for Responsible Investment

Equator Principles

Environmental, Social, and Corporate Governance (ESG) data refers to metrics related to intangible assets within an enterprise. Research shows that intangible assets comprise an increasing percentage of future enterprise value.

While there are many ways to think of intangible asset metrics, these three central factors together, ESG, comprise a label that has been adopted throughout the U.S financial industry. They are used for a myriad of specific purposes with the ultimate objective of measuring elements related to sustainability and societal impact of a company or business.

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June 26, 2021

Revenge Dress

Diana

The Revenge dress is an off the shoulder black silk evening gown worn by Princess Diana to a 1994 dinner not long after the televised admission of adultery by her husband, Charles, Prince of Wales.

The event to which the dress was worn was a June 29, 1994 fundraising dinner hosted by ‘Vanity Fair’ magazine for the Serpentine Gallery in Kensington Gardens. Diana had originally declined the invitation to the dinner. However, two days prior to the dinner, following several days’ publicity of Charles’ infidelity revelations, she accepted the invitation.

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April 26, 2021

Network Telescope

Honeypot

network telescope (also known as a ‘packet telescope,’ ‘darknet,’ ‘Internet motion sensor,’ or ‘black hole’) is an Internet system that allows one to observe different large-scale events taking place on the Internet. The basic idea is to observe traffic targeting the dark (unused) address-space of the network.

Since all traffic to these addresses is suspicious, one can gain information about possible network attacks (random scanning worms, and DDoS backscatter) as well as other misconfigurations by observing it.

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January 21, 2021

White Coke

White Coke is a nickname for a clear variant of Coca-Cola produced in the 1940s at the request of Marshal of the Soviet Union Georgy Zhukov. Like other clear colas, it was of the same original flavor, virtually unchanged by the absence of caramel coloring.

Zhukov was introduced to Coca-Cola during, or shortly after, World War II by his counterpart in Western Europe, Supreme Commander of Allied Forces in Western Europe, Dwight D. Eisenhower, who was also a fan of the drink. As Coca-Cola was regarded in the Soviet Union as a symbol of American imperialism, Zhukov was apparently reluctant to be photographed or reported as consuming such a product.

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January 7, 2021

Foundations of Geopolitics

Aleksandr Dugin

‘The Foundations of Geopolitics: The Geopolitical Future of Russia’ is a 1997 geopolitical book by Aleksandr Dugin, a Russian political analyst and strategist known for his fascist views. His book has had influence within the Russian military, police, and foreign policy elites and has been used as a textbook in the Academy of the General Staff of the Russian military.

Its publication was well received in Russia. Powerful Russian political figures subsequently took an interest in Dugin, a Russian eurasianist, fascist, and nationalist who has developed a close relationship with Russia’s military academies.

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