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Topic: Maps-Maps-Maps! ?  (Read 49609 times)

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Maps-Maps-Maps! ?
Who knows a decent map service on the Web? Except for Google's and alike, I mean.
For example, I wanted to find some physical maps of the UK's regions. One recent guy gave me errors instead of pages...
In one of other threads I shared some www.justmaps.org.  But its helpfulness seems rather limited to finding towns (within countries or otherwise larger regions; it looks simpler than using Google-like zoomables).
So what do you know? ???

  • ersi
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Re: Maps-Maps-Maps! ?
Reply #125
Aha, Berlitz and Däniken. You are much more enthusiastic about Atlantis than I am. Those guys never entered my horizon.

Once upon a time I for a moment considered buying a book by Blavatsky - in Russian because it's dirt cheap -, but the moment passed without any action. Blavatsky mentions Atlantis, so I have heard.

The Atlas of Atlantis that I mentioned, you can find it on Amazon. There's no paranormalcy in that book, just a bit of deliberate mystification.

  • Belfrager
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Re: Maps-Maps-Maps! ?
Reply #126
The image that Ersi posted with the comparison from the north shore of South America and a Piri Reis map shows clearly what those idiots taught to be a representation of the Antarctic.

Atlantis bullshit deserves an entire new thread just to deal with it. Atlantis, the triangle of Bermudas and the Eurovision Song Contest.

Now, Piri was a Turkish name and Reis the Turkish word for Admiral. Well, not exactly Turkish since Turkey was the creation of one man, Aka Turk, at the last century.
Ottoman, I suppose it will be right to say.

Not to confuse Piri - the Admiral, with piri-piri, the Portuguese word for very hot sauce that we created as an onomatopoeic interpretation of the sounds the rudimentary natives made to describe such hot sauce.
A matter of attitude.

  • jax
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Re: Maps-Maps-Maps! ?
Reply #127
A map of the countries of the world with country size based on the number of languages spoken there. Nearly monolingual Europe almost disappears from the map, while Papua New Guinea turns into a continent. The map is in the Swedish dialect of English so Kina = China, Kamerun = Cameroon, and the ending -en would be -a (e.g. Indien = India).


  • jax
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Re: Maps-Maps-Maps! ?
Reply #128
This bunch of maps were collated here. This EU map may confirm my suspicion that European language skills atrophy, that Europeans tend to know their own language and English, while the command of tertiary languages like French, German, Russian... as a foreign language is diminishing, and world languages like Arabic, Standard Chinese, Hindi-Urdu haven't yet taken up the slack.


  • Frenzie
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Re: Maps-Maps-Maps! ?
Reply #129
This EU map may confirm my suspicion that European language skills atrophy, that Europeans tend to know their own language and English, while the command of tertiary languages like French, German, Russian... as a foreign language is diminishing, and world languages like Arabic, Standard Chinese, Hindi-Urdu haven't yet taken up the slack.

But does it really, except perhaps for the UK? I believe that all over Europe it would be more accurate to say that English has taken over the role of French than to say that knowledge of foreign languages has diminished. Here in Flanders, for instance, people by and large used to speak fairly decent French and poor English. In Germany something similar applies. English has replaced French post-WW2, but that doesn't mean Germans on average used to speak decent English and French. Even in a country like Romania (1.5 languages according to the map) people all used to speak broken French as a foreign language, but now they speak broken English instead. Heck, it applies even to me. My French is like my dad's English: adequate -- or rather, broken so as not to sound like I'm singling out Romanians. ;) France has never been big on foreign languages in the first place. It wouldn't surprise me if 50 years ago you would've been able to flip the UK and France around.

world languages like Arabic, Standard Chinese, Hindi-Urdu

To be a world language you need many non-native speakers and not just from a few neighboring regions. And anyway, if Arabic or Standard Chinese are one language then so is (Vulgar) Latin. Maybe that explains why most people in Portugal are counted as speaking only one language. :P

  • ersi
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Re: Maps-Maps-Maps! ?
Reply #130
Something's seriously wrong with that map. My perception is that smaller peoples always speak more languages, so I find it impossible that e.g. Hungarians speak one, while Austrians allegedly three.*

According to my experience, having visited the country a few times, Romanians are routinely able to speak foreign languages such as English, German, French, and Italian. And I got by with Russian there too. Never did I encounter a Romanian who would not know at least some foreign language. And at least French and Italian are related closely enough to give them an advantage even without a need to study.

* Edit: Oops, I read wrong. It's Slovenians three. Austrians have two. Anyway, Hungarians and Romanians should also have it somewhere in the rank of three.

  • mjmsprt40
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Re: Maps-Maps-Maps! ?
Reply #131
I'm sorta surprised that the US figured as highly as it did. Obviously, a number of people from South of the border speak some sort of Spanish, and we have enclaves of people from all over who speak their native tongues and-- supposedly at least-- try to learn the local English dialects. But, many a native-born US citizen speaks only his mother tongue-- and gets enraged when "immigrants" don't/won't/can't learn it fast enough. We even have people pushing to make English the national language-- presently I don't think we have a legally recognized "national language" but I could be wrong. We're trying to be near monolithic in our language, and that-- on your map-- would make the USA almost invisible.
What would happen if a large asteroid slammed into the Earth?
According to several tests involving a watermelon and a large hammer, it would be really bad!

  • rjhowie
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Re: Maps-Maps-Maps! ?
Reply #132
Bing does a good service and giving a choice of satellite, bird's eye or road.
"Quit you like men:be strong"

  • jax
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Re: Maps-Maps-Maps! ?
Reply #133


I'm sorta surprised that the US figured as highly as it did.


The first map counts the number of languages, not the number of people speaking them. PNG is thus a linguistic world power even though fairly few are speaking the languages (5 to 122,000 native speakers). By the way the statistics is made, the languages are keyed to a primary country, which seems to be the country of origin. Thus English, Portugese, French, and Spanish are counted as European languages, not American languages. So by region:


  • Africa has 30% of the languages spoken by 15% of the world population (median 27,000 speakers)

  • The Americas have 15% of the languages spoken by 1% of the world population (median 1,500 speakers)

  • Asia has 32% of the languages spoken by 60% of the world population (median 12,000 speakers)

  • Europe has 4% of the languages spoken by 26% of the world population (median 50,000 speakers)

  • The Pacific has 19% of the languages spoken by 0% of the world population (median 950 speakers)



Why are there so few languages in Europe? In short: empires. The Roman empire alone dramatically reduced linguistic diversity in Europe. To this day a large part of the European (and American) population speak a Latin-based Romance language, the Pre-Roman languages long gone. As it is, a small group of languages, the Indo-European language group, has taken over much of the world.


  • Frenzie
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Re: Maps-Maps-Maps! ?
Reply #134
* Edit: Oops, I read wrong. It's Slovenians three. Austrians have two. Anyway, Hungarians and Romanians should also have it somewhere in the rank of three.

Well, Hungary is one of the few places in Europe where I had trouble expressing myself verbally outside of the more touristy areas. Perhaps if I spoke Polish or Russian I might've had better luck, but generally my experience has been that in case of no English, there's always German or French. On the other hand, some people in Hungary speak some darn good Dutch! Anyway, I perceived a clear age-gap, probably Cold War related. Hungarian people my age were fluent in English and several other languages (including Dutch!); older people (40+?) often didn't seem to share any languages with me.

I also wonder what criteria the map uses. I'd be inclined to say I speak only three languages, even if I'm capable of reading French well enough because I can't hold anything more than basic conversations in French and because I can't think in French. In other words, I have a primarily passive knowledge of French. But if it's self-reported, you might imagine Dutch people claiming they speak French and German because -- let's face it -- our bigger neighbors may barely even have a passive knowledge of multiple languages.

Re: Maps-Maps-Maps! ?
Reply #135
But, many a native-born US citizen speaks only his mother tongue-- and gets enraged when "immigrants" don't/won't/can't learn it fast enough.

The only surprise here is that the US isn't larger.  Typically you get two years of foreign language in High School, more in college. In addition, you have servicemen picking up other languages while posted overseas.

I find this comment ironic:

Quote
skifaster6 answered 9 years ago
5% tops. We make it to easy on them. I have made a personal pact never to hire anyone that does not speak 100% good english from now on for my company. Everyone else should do the same. You want to live here, then speak the language or get the hell out...


It would appear the poster that demands people speak English doesn't know the language all that well himself. Anyway, the folks that are enraged would be so much if they didn't upset themselves so much, especially over non-issue. The data shows that new arrivals indeed are learning English. Having said that, I understand how the enraged folks get their incorrect impressions: telephone IVRs saying "Press 1 for English..." bilingual food cans, them speaking Spanish among themselves.

I have a personal story. I'm only second generation American born on father's side. At Christmas as my Sicilian grandparents' house, the adults spoke Italian sometimes among themselves. They also spoke perfect English.

A quote from the article:

Quote
"The last people you have to tell that English is important are immigrants," says Rumbaut. "English is already the de facto language of the country and of the world."


  • jax
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Re: Maps-Maps-Maps! ?
Reply #136

Something's seriously wrong with that map. My perception is that smaller peoples always speak more languages, so I find it impossible that e.g. Hungarians speak one, while [Slovenians] allegedly three.

The trick there is that the European map showed median number of languages. In other words based on the numbers about half the population spoke one language (presumably Hungarian, as that is obligatory in school), and at least 45% spoke two or more languages. This applies for the other 1 1/2 countries as well. Countries like Ireland, marked as 1, would have less than 45% speaking Irish or other non-English language. The typical Dane, Dutch, Slovenian would speak 3 languages, but some would speak more.

The same guy also made a map using the (arithmetic) mean, average, number of languages.


  • mjmsprt40
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Re: Maps-Maps-Maps! ?
Reply #137

But, many a native-born US citizen speaks only his mother tongue-- and gets enraged when "immigrants" don't/won't/can't learn it fast enough.

The only surprise here is that the US isn't larger.  Typically you get two years of foreign language in High School, more in college. In addition, you have servicemen picking up other languages while posted overseas.

I find this comment ironic:

Quote
skifaster6 answered 9 years ago
5% tops. We make it to easy on them. I have made a personal pact never to hire anyone that does not speak 100% good english from now on for my company. Everyone else should do the same. You want to live here, then speak the language or get the hell out...


It would appear the poster that demands people speak English doesn't know the language all that well himself. Anyway, the folks that are enraged would be so much if they didn't upset themselves so much, especially over non-issue. The data shows that new arrivals indeed are learning English. Having said that, I understand how the enraged folks get their incorrect impressions: telephone IVRs saying "Press 1 for English..." bilingual food cans, them speaking Spanish among themselves.

I have a personal story. I'm only second generation American born on father's side. At Christmas as my Sicilian grandparents' house, the adults spoke Italian sometimes among themselves. They also spoke perfect English.

A quote from the article:

Quote
"The last people you have to tell that English is important are immigrants," says Rumbaut. "English is already the de facto language of the country and of the world."



One complaint heard is that if you go to a foreign country--- Spain as an example-- you would have to learn Spanish if you expect to live and work there. Maybe, maybe not. If Jax's maps are any indication it's possible to get by just on the English language in a large part of the world because people make an effort to learn it at least as their secondary language-- for professional reasons if for no other. People who primarily speak English seem to have the most trouble with other languages-- we can't stop looking down at others long enough to even try to learn any other language, then have the nerve to yip at others for not learning English.
What would happen if a large asteroid slammed into the Earth?
According to several tests involving a watermelon and a large hammer, it would be really bad!

  • Frenzie
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Re: Maps-Maps-Maps! ?
Reply #138
One complaint heard is that if you go to a foreign country--- Spain as an example-- you would have to learn Spanish if you expect to live and work there. Maybe, maybe not.

Who cares what stupid things Spain (or the Netherlands or Denmark) requires of immigrants? The simple fact is that someone who's been living and working in the Netherlands for 40 years, yet has a somewhat lacking command of Dutch, is clearly getting by just fine. It's one of those things that get implemented for fear of mythical Muslims who don't want to work and just lazily pray to Allah all day while they aren't planning terrorist attacks. Meanwhile, how this affects people who command of the English language but not necessarily Dutch is far more damaging to the economy. I also know plenty of stories of people who moved to Belgium, Germany, Italy, Brazil, etc. instead if the Dutch state wanted to make such a problem out of their foreign partner. In other words, completely self-caused brain drain.

  • jax
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Re: Maps-Maps-Maps! ?
Reply #139
But does it really, except perhaps for the UK? I believe that all over Europe it would be more accurate to say that English has taken over the role of French than to say that knowledge of foreign languages has diminished. Here in Flanders, for instance, people by and large used to speak fairly decent French and poor English. In Germany something similar applies. English has replaced French post-WW2, but that doesn't mean Germans on average used to speak decent English and French. Even in a country like Romania (1.5 languages according to the map) people all used to speak broken French as a foreign language, but now they speak broken English instead. Heck, it applies even to me. My French is like my dad's English: adequate -- or rather, broken so as not to sound like I'm singling out Romanians. ;) France has never been big on foreign languages in the first place. It wouldn't surprise me if 50 years ago you would've been able to flip the UK and France around.

world languages like Arabic, Standard Chinese, Hindi-Urdu

To be a world language you need many non-native speakers and not just from a few neighboring regions. And anyway, if Arabic or Standard Chinese are one language then so is (Vulgar) Latin. Maybe that explains why most people in Portugal are counted as speaking only one language. :P


Agree, it cannot actually be read from the map (thus the weasely 'may'), though my impression is that German, French and Russian have been loosing out a foreign language the last couple decades. Russian for obvious reasons, for French and German (and other European languages) I should probably look closer at the data first.

Europe has become a more open place, with Europeans working in other countries than their own. That should imply better rather than worse language skills, and it probably has for this group, but for those that have stayed put, the opposite seems to be the trend, including neighbouring languages. It may not be surprising that Czechs are poorer in Slovak and vice versa now that we have Slovakia and the Czech Republic instead of Czechoslovakia, but the same trend can be seen in the Nordic countries. A lot of Swedes work in Norway, but the Norwegian command of Swedish is worsening. For imperial reasons Icelanders used to learn Danish, and Finns Swedish, but this seems less the case today.

Increasingly English may become the lingua franca in Europe, and the motivations for learning further languages might diminish. Or might not, this may not be the whole picture.

It's true that Standard Chinese isn't currently much of a world language. The primary speakers of Chinese languages outside China is the Chinese diaspora, and they are just as likely to speak other Chinese languages as Standard Chinese. That's not the case for Arabic, as it is the official language of the Quran and Islam, pretty much like Latin has been for Catholicism, and with some of the same problems as well.

  • ersi
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Re: Maps-Maps-Maps! ?
Reply #140
@jax

The other language skills map of Europe, the one with arithmetic average, still hurts my expectations which are based on solid anecdotal evidence. Hungarians and Romanians still allegedly know noticeably less languages than Austrians and Germans. This doesn't seem right.

However, a possible reason for the deviation(s) in the map may be that in some countries the respondents included immigrants or descendants of immigrants. This would skew the average for countries that have a large immigrant population who still retain their ethnic language, say Turks in Germany and Austria. Then again, this should skew UK too, but maybe there immigrant population happened to be methodically ignored when the study was conducted? Whereas countries with negligible language minorities, such as Hungary, would inevitably bring their own organic language skills onto the map.


A lot of Swedes work in Norway, but the Norwegian command of Swedish is worsening.

Not sure how language skills between Norway and Sweden can worsen when they actually employ the same language, just label it differently for political reasons. In Swedish radio when Norwegians are interviewed, they leave it untranslated. I have learned Swedish and at the same go I know Norwegian. Not a surprise for me, I knew it would happen.


Increasingly English may become the lingua franca in Europe, and the motivations for learning further languages might diminish. Or might not, this may not be the whole picture.

I think it would have been a good idea to make Latin the official language of EU, so all MEP's would have a bad time learning it. Bad time is what they deserve. Otherwise they do pointless things like translate EU constitution into SMS.

  • Belfrager
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Re: Maps-Maps-Maps! ?
Reply #141
All those maps are a fraud.
A matter of attitude.

  • jax
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Re: Maps-Maps-Maps! ?
Reply #142

  • Frenzie
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Reply #143
"We've rapidly reduced the supply of nuclear weapons"

I wonder how that translates into kilotons.

  • jax
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Reply #144
I think the general trend is towards smaller weapons (though tactical warheads seem thankfully to be of the past), but I'm not sure more than 10,000 hanging around is something to be overly cheerful about.  (The article cheated, it's mostly charts, rather few maps.)

  • Macallan
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Reply #145
Hmm, I wonder how much of chart #1 takes things like inflation, differences in cost of living etc. into account. Especially cost of living. Even $10 a day won't get you anywhere in the US or .de, but it would buy significantly more food elsewhere.

  • jax
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Reply #146
It is inflation and PPP-adjusted (PPP 2005), using World Bank as source.

There are some other nice graphs there as well, including an attempt to combine poverty as an absolute term, and how financially poor they feel, "satisfied with standard of living".

There are some issues with the dollar-a-day approach, Dollar benchmark: The rise of the $1-a-day statistic
Quote from: BBC
It's shocking to learn how many people live on less than $1 day - and regular publication of the figures over the last two decades has helped fuel anti-poverty campaigns. But could the statistic actually have done more harm than good?

In the late 1980s, a group of economists at the World Bank in Washington DC noticed that a number of developing countries drew their poverty lines at an income of about $370 a year.

This reflected the basic amount that a person needed to live. Each country had a different sense of what the essentials were, but the figure of roughly $370 was common to all, so the World Bank team proposed it as a global poverty line.

Some time later one of these economists, Martin Ravallion, was having dinner with his wife and, as they chatted, he had what he described as a kind of "epiphany".

If you divide that $370 by 365 days, you get just over $1. And so the catchy "$1-a-day"' concept was born.

Simple, powerful and shocking.

"We intended to have some impact with it," Martin Ravallion recalls. "Make well-heeled people realise how poor many people in the world are."

But it's a lot more complicated, and controversial, than it at first appears.

  • Frenzie
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Re: Maps-Maps-Maps! ?
Reply #147
So 60 cents food & living, 40 cents other stuff? Doesn't that sound familiar...

  • Belfrager
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Re: Maps-Maps-Maps! ?
Reply #148
The same guy also made a map using the (arithmetic) mean, average, number of languages.

Lies, lies, lies.
A matter of attitude.

  • Frenzie
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Re: Maps-Maps-Maps! ?
Reply #149