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Libertarians make a misguided political statement at the Jefferson Memorial
|| 4/17/2008 || 4:50 pm || 2 Comments Rendered || ||

I’ve been reading some of the coverage about a group of DC Libertarians who tried to stage a flash mob at the Jefferson Memorial last weekend.

The plan was simple: show up at the Jefferson Memorial at a set time and dance with their iPods for 10 minutes to celebrate Thomas Jefferson’s birthday and leave. But all did not go as planned:

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Rush hour bicycle traffic congestion in Copenhagen, Denmark
|| 4/16/2008 || 4:34 pm || Comments Off on Rush hour bicycle traffic congestion in Copenhagen, Denmark || ||

The last couple days I’ve been posting about bicycling, so why not add another one of my favorite examples of how people in another country have embraced bicycling? Everyday I check out Copenhagen Cycling Chic, which is a blog about styliciousness of bicyclists in Copenhagen, Denmark. More specifically, the blog usually features well-dressed, attractive women on bicycles. As xenophile, I love seeing how the people commute and how drastically different it is from the American way of life. It seems that the majority of bicycles for sale at my local bike shops are racing bikes, mountain bikes, and single track bikes. Thus it appears that the stores mainly cater to the athletic folks who treat bicycling as a physical activity (or business: couriers), and not a simplified, slowed-down, lifestyle as the author of Copenhagen Cycling Chic and myself view bicycling. I have not owned a car in nearly 10 years and I don’t miss being car-crippled one bit. The money I’ve saved in car payments & car insurance is astounding and I’m healthier because my transportation is also my exercise. Yet this is the difference– I view the exercise as a lesser byproduct of a conscious decision to live a more mentally & ecologically sound life. I’ll pick the rush hour in the YouTube video above any day over sitting in traffic enclosed in a metal box pumping toxins into the atmosphere. Better views too.



Germany’s Green Party opens chapter in Washington, DC
|| 4/10/2008 || 11:46 pm || Comments Off on Germany’s Green Party opens chapter in Washington, DC || ||

As a current member of the DC Statehood Green Party, former elected member of the DC Statehood Green Party steering committee, and former elected national delegate to the Green Party of the United States, this is exciting news to me. Dies ist gut:

Germany’s Green Party opens chapter in Washington, DC

Julie Gregson | Deutsche Welle | 04.09.2008

Germany’s Green Party is setting up a branch in the United States. The bottom-up initiative aims to bring a more international perspective to the party’s work and combat anti-Americanism among some members back home.

The chapter is due to be officially founded next weekend in Washington DC. It hopes to tap into the experiences of the growing number of Germans working in the US capital in international organizations, foundations and think tanks, as well as in the media, the culture industry and higher education.

“We’ve discovered that there are a lot of Germans in town who are young, tolerant and cosmopolitan and who share Green values or are active in the Green party,” said chapter co-founder Arne Jungjohann. “We want to offer them a platform.” But the group is also looking to engage with Greens across the United States and has set up a Facebook presence to allow those living further afield to contribute to the debate. “Our purpose is to have a group that is following German domestic politics and influencing the Green agenda in Germany on international topics,” said Jungjohann, who is also Environmental Program Director at the Boell Foundation.

Countering anti-americanism

Anti-Americanism is another area where the group believes it could have important input. Reinhard Buetikofer, co-leader of the Greens, welcomed the establishment of the party’s Washington DC branch, saying it was a positive sign for bilateral dialog.

“This is not supposed to be a one-way street — it’s an exchange, it’s about cooperation,” Buetikofer said. “It will attest to the fact that the Green party is open towards exchange with the United States. You do not have to be German to join the group, but an affiliation with Germany is required and German will be its working language.

It is the Greens’ second branch abroad. The party also has a group based in Brussels, the headquarters of the European Commission.

[via Sam Smith’s D.C. City Desk]

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ABSOLUT STATEHOOD
|| 4/8/2008 || 4:52 pm || Comments Off on ABSOLUT STATEHOOD || ||

Screen grab links to .kmz file for Google Earth

A geovisual response to an LA Times blog entry showing mostly isolationist responses to an alternative history map of North America by Absolut Vodka.

This interactive map for Google Earth shows the familiar Absolut Vodka bottle labeled “Absolut Statehood” and placed inside of the original boundaries of the District of Columbia. These boundaries existed until 1847 after the residents of Virginia voted to cede back the portion of the District of Columbia that was west of the Potomac River.

Absolut Statehood represents the cartographic notion that the nation’s capital can become America’s 51st state*. Today there are over 550,000 American citizens living in the nation’s capital that are being denied the fundamental right of representation in Congress. This ongoing human rights violation currently practiced by the government of the United States has been denounced by the United Nations, the Organization of American States, and the Organization for Security and Cooperation in Europe. The United States is the only country in the industrialized world that forbids the residents of it’s capital city the right to elect representatives to their national legislature.

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The maps on Google Analytics suffer from Washington, DC’s exclusion
|| 4/4/2008 || 12:58 pm || Comments Off on The maps on Google Analytics suffer from Washington, DC’s exclusion || ||

The other day I mentioned how Google Charts API includes small maps but leaves Washington, DC off the map. Last night when I was looking at my newly installed Google Analytics interface (above) and I discovered another reason why Washington, DC should be included: without including Washington, DC, the map on the Google Analytics page is lacking a means to show visitors from the nation’s capital. This means all webmasters around the world who use Google’s Analytics are not being able to effectively analyze their data on the map of the United States because not every country/territory/region on the continental mainland is being shown.

From the screen grab above:
A. There is 61.4 square miles of Country/Territory missing here
B. If Regions are being listed, why is one being excluded from the map above?
C. District of Columbia is not a Region nor are any of the States listed below it


As I wrote before, Google can add Washington, DC to the lower portion of their maps in the area where Alaska and Hawaii are not shown to scale. While Washington, DC may be denied statehood, it has more inhabitants than the state of Wyoming and should be given the same opportunity to be shown on the map of the United States. Otherwise, like the Google Analytics screen grab above, the maps will continue to be incomplete and inaccurate.



The National Archives Experience: Digital Vaults, and a correction request
|| 4/2/2008 || 12:25 pm || Comments Off on The National Archives Experience: Digital Vaults, and a correction request || ||

I was recently directed to the the National Archives’ Digital Vaults webpage. After the flash animation was loaded up, I was greeted by a nice visual interface (above) that shows various items that are digitally scattered within the vault.

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National MSM of the American Indian on Google Maps; Why truncate the word Museum?
|| 3/31/2008 || 1:55 pm || 1 Comment Rendered || ||

Last night I was using Google Maps and discovered that the label for the National Museum of the American Indian has been truncated to be “National MSM of the American Indian.” This raised alarm because the shorthand for MSM is more recognized as “MainStream Media” not museum. Native Americans have been shortchanged for hundreds of years by the American government, and I found it downright rude that the museum’s name has been cartographically shortchanged as well. So why shorten the name?

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Lost in a hairy bush? Use a map! – Or just a razor instead…
|| 3/28/2008 || 1:29 pm || Comments Off on Lost in a hairy bush? Use a map! – Or just a razor instead… || ||

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My first jury duty experience; Courthouse needs more art
|| 3/25/2008 || 3:09 pm || Comments Off on My first jury duty experience; Courthouse needs more art || ||

Notice the map does not include which direction is North

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Google Charts API now includes small maps, but leaves out Washington, DC.
|| 3/24/2008 || 11:53 am || 1 Comment Rendered || ||

Since DC is not a state, Google decided to completely leave out the nation’s capital from it’s new Google Docs feature that allows the creation of small, static maps. This cartographic error could have easily been fixed by simply adding a small arrow to the DC diamond and labeling it in the Atlantic Ocean as “Washington, DC” in the USA map.

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Nikolas Schiller is a second-class American citizen living in America's last colony, Washington, DC. This blog is my on-line repository of what I have created or found on-line since May of 2004. If you have any questions or comments, please contact:

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