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16 сентября, 19:21

Jürgen Klopp says ‘fortune was not wearing Liverpool shirt’ in Burnley draw

There was a roll-call of former title-winners and mosaics around the ground to mark the 125th anniversary of Liverpool’s first ever game, against Rotherham Town, but there was precious little in the present to celebrate for Jürgen Klopp. “Fortune was not wearing a Liverpool shirt today,” their manager said. Fortune did not fashion a stalemate with Burnley either.Sean Dyche’s team have clearly learned the lessons of a painful campaign on the road last season, when they took until 29 April to record their first win and suffered 14 away defeats. The experience of a second consecutive season in the top flight is showing in players who have taken five points from visits to Liverpool, Tottenham and Chelsea. The lessons the home side are learning in their second full season under Klopp are more difficult to ascertain. Continue reading...

16 сентября, 17:30

VICTOR DAVIS HANSON: Diversity Can Spell Trouble. America is experiencing a diversity and inclus…

VICTOR DAVIS HANSON: Diversity Can Spell Trouble. America is experiencing a diversity and inclusion conundrum—which, in historical terms, has not necessarily been a good thing. Communities are tearing themselves apart over the statues of long-dead Confederate generals. Controversy rages over which slogan—“Black Lives Matter” or “All Lives Matter”—is truly racist. Antifa street thugs clash with […]

14 сентября, 17:31

Investors Real Estate (IRET) Buys Plymouth Property for $92M

Investors Real Estate Trust's (IRET) acquisition of Park Place Apartments in the Twin Cities submarket of Plymouth a strategic fit due to favorable demographic trends and inherent demand.

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12 сентября, 23:40

Warmer climate squeezes aquatic predators out of their preferred habitat [Ecology]

Ecosystems are mosaics of different habitats, each of which provides its own opportunities and risks to the organisms that inhabit it. The profitability of any habitat depends on a variety of biotic and abiotic variables including the abundance of prey, vulnerability to predators, and physical features such as temperature that...

11 сентября, 17:41

Can North Korea Drag the U.S. and China Into War?

  • 0

History offers clues about the likely course of a dangerous dynamic in east Asia.

27 июня, 17:45

Where to find the Amber Room, a cultural treasure stolen by the Nazis

Peter I, the first emperor of Russia — who reigned from 1682 to 1721 —  was well known for his love of curiosities. His collection of unusual and unique items, the Kuntskamera, is full of rarities ranging from mineral deposits to the fetuses of deformed still-born infants. His collection is still exhibited in St. Petersburg today. During his rule, every monarch in Europe knew that there was no better way to please the powerful Russian czar than to give him an unusual present. This is why Frederick William I of Prussia came up with an elaborate gift in his attempt to win Peter I’s favor. In 1716, he presented the Russian emperor with a chamber, designed by the finest Prussian baroque architects and sculptors, decorated with amber and gold. This was the famous Amber Room, which would later be called the Eighth Wonder of the World due to its astounding beauty. From Prussia to Russia Peter I’s descendants had the chamber remodeled and significantly expanded, turning it into a pearl of their prosperity. By the end of the 18th century, it had been transformed into a gorgeous room covering almost 100 square meters and decorated with six tons of amber, gold leaf and semi-precious stones. Historians and jewelers still argue over the approximate value of the Amber Room with estimates ranging from $142 million to over $500 million. Catherine the Great — who reigned from 1762 to 1796 — had the chamber placed in her summer residence, the Catherine Palace, which was located in Tsarskoye Selo (now the city of Pushkin, 30 km south of St. Petersburg). This unique piece of art was constantly maintained and remained in the Catherine Palace until 1941. Ironically, a large-scale restoration was scheduled to take place that year but, due to the war, this never happened. Amber Room, Catherine Palace, Tsarskoye Selo, near St. Petersburg. / Getty Images Devoured by war World War II broke out in June 1941. The fighting was very challenging for the USSR, especially during the first few months. By that September, the city of Pushkin had been occupied by the German army. By this time, many Soviet museum exhibits and priceless works of art had already been shipped to Siberia for safekeeping but the Amber Room was too fragile and heavy to transport. Under the reign of Adolf Hitler, numerous works of art from previous centuries, the Amber Room included, were officially viewed as property that had been stolen from the German people. The Nazis, therefore, reclaimed this treasure and sent the dismantled Amber Room to Königsberg (now Kaliningrad, Russia, 1088 km east of Moscow). According to Alfred Rohde, the German art historian who supervised the collection at the Königsberg Castle from 1926-1945, the Germans took good care of the Amber Room. Rohde claims that it even survived the heavy bombing of Königsberg in 1944, when most of the city’s historic center was burnt down, because the chamber had been disassembled and stored in the castle’s basements. Nevertheless, when Soviet troops captured Königsberg in April 1945 they did not find any trace of the room or its contents. The Amber Room had disappeared. Gone for good? There are plenty of theories as to where the Amber Room went, the simplest being that Rohde lied and the collection had been completely destroyed during the intense fighting for Königsberg. Another theory claims that the chamber remains buried somewhere in the basements underneath the Königsberg Castle, which was demolished by the Soviets in 1969. Experts believe that if this is the case, the chamber would be as good as destroyed because amber requires certain temperatures and conditions to be preserved and is likely to decay underground. Lend-Lease: How American supplies aided the USSR in its darkest hour Other suggestions are more enticing to the adventurers who still hope to find the Amber Room. For example, the room could have been dismantled and shipped to Germany when the Nazis realized their defeat was inevitable. A Russian historian Andrei Przedomsky even believes that this piece of art is hidden in undisclosed German Secret Service bunkers outside of Kaliningrad. Some other researchers have posited that the chamber was secretly moved to South America, along with the several Nazi leaders who fled after 1945. One of the most exotic tales suggests that Germany never seized the Amber Room at all–at least not the real one. According to Fedor Morozov, a specialist from Pushkin, Soviet restorers had copied the decorations, and skillfully replaced the originals with duplicates, before moving the original Amber Room to a safe location prior to the war. Morozov is certain that the Soviet government shipped the contents to Armand Hammer, an American businessman and a close friend of the Soviet Union, as a reward for his support of the country’s Lend-Lease program. A flawless duplicate Several pieces from the original Amber Room did survive World War II. In 2000, Germany returned two pieces of the room’s decor to Russia, a Florentine mosaic and an amber bureau. However, it seems that the entirety of the contents will not be found so Russian scientists and sculptors have worked to reconstruct the lost masterpiece. Their meticulous work, which included the participation of German craftsmen, started in 1981 and lasted for more than 20 years, costing $11.35 million. The newly restored Amber Room was opened in 2003 at the Catherine Palace in Pushkin. The Catherine Palace in Pushkin ruined by German invaders, 1945. / Boris Kudoyarov/RIA Novosti Baron Eduard von Falz-Fein, a Russian-born businessman from Liechtenstein, has spent 30 years of his life searching for the Amber Room. In 2004 he said that while the original chamber appears to have been lost forever, the new version is a worthy substitute. “I saw the old Amber Room, when I was five years old, and I’ve seen the new one. The new one is even better,” von Falz-Fein told Argumenty i Fakty. Enthusiasts are still welcome to continue the hunt for the original Amber Room but it is far easier to go to Pushkin and enjoy the masterful recreation. This article is part of the Russian X-Files series in which RBTH explores Russia-related mysteries and paranormal phenomena. Read more: Russian jeweller recreates the Amber Room in his workshop

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26 июня, 21:48

A rare mosaic is unearthed in remote Cyprus

Archaeologists in Akaki begin restoration work on the nearly 2,000-year-old tile mosaic. Alicia Powell reports. Subscribe: http://smarturl.it/reuterssubscribe More updates and breaking news: http://smarturl.it/BreakingNews Reuters tells the world's stories like no one else. As the largest international multimedia news provider, Reuters provides coverage around the globe and across topics including business, financial, national, and international news. For over 160 years, Reuters has maintained its reputation for speed, accuracy, and impact while providing exclusives, incisive commentary and forward-looking analysis. http://reuters.com/ https://www.facebook.com/Reuters https://plus.google.com/u/0/s/reuters https://twitter.com/Reuters

26 июня, 15:59

Oration on the Dignity of Man

**Giovanni Pico della Mirandola**: Oration on the Dignity of Man: "Most esteemed Fathers, I have read in the ancient writings of the Arabians that Abdala the Saracen on being asked what, on this stage, so to say, of the world, seemed to him most evocative of wonder, replied that there was nothing to be seen more marvelous than man... >...And that celebrated exclamation of Hermes Trismegistus, "What a great miracle is man, Asclepius" confirms this opinion. >And still, as I reflected upon the basis assigned for these estimations, I was not fully persuaded by the diverse reasons advanced for the pre-eminence of human nature; that man is the intermediary between creatures, that he is the familiar of the gods above him as he is the lord of the beings beneath him; that, by the acuteness of his senses, the inquiry of his reason and the light of his intelligence, he is the interpreter of nature, set midway between the timeless unchanging and the flux of time; the living union (as the Persians say), the very marriage hymn of the world, and, by David's testimony but little lower than the angels. >These reasons are all, without question, of great weight; nevertheless,...

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24 июня, 23:43

[Перевод] Происхождение тега IMG

NCSA Mosaic был одним из первых кросплатформенных браузеров на рынке. Встретили его с огромным благоговением. Всего за несколько месяцев после выхода летом 1993 года Mosaic изменил представление не только о браузерах, но и о WWW в целом. Гэри Вулф писал в Wired, что Mosaic «производил сильное впечатление не информации, а личности». Mosaic сделал веб более приспособленным для сотен тысяч людей, впервые выходящих в онлайн. Конечно, Mosaic было легко установить на любой операционке. Он был чрезвычайно прост в использовании. Но большую роль в этих изменениях наверняка сыграл тег IMG. Конечно, за несколько месяцев до его выхода никто не знал, насколько браузер станет популярным. Mosaic был разработан в Национальном центре суперкомпьютерных приложений [National Center for Supercomputing Applications, NCSA] в Иллинойском университете в Урбана-Шампейн. Разработкой руководил упорный Майк Андриссен, в ту пору ещё бывший студентом, вместе с сотрудником NCSA Эриком Бина. Андриссен интересовался вебом с тех пор, как за два года до этого впервые познакомился с ним. Читать дальше →

21 июня, 15:01

How Much Money Does the Average American Need to Feel Financially Secure?

For millions of people, the concept of financial security is a pipe dream. How much money would it actually take to feel good about your finances?

19 июня, 12:20

Don’t miss these 5 stations on the Moscow Metro’s Circle Line

Komsomolskaya station was constructed to act as a type of “gateway” to Moscow. / Legion Media The Moscow Metro is known all over the world for being the largest underground museum. Many of the stations were luxuriously designed and decorated by leading Soviet artists and sculptors in the Stalinist Empire style as a demonstration of the power and wealth of the Soviet Union. At the center of the map of Moscow’s metro system there is a ring line, consisting of 12 stations with continuously running trains that circle the heart of the city. This line was constructed following the Second World War, and the decoration glorifies the military might of the Russian people. Almost every station has architecture of cultural significance. In order to experience the art, you only need to enter the metro one time. As you ride around the ring line, exit the metro car, take some time to view the art and architecture at each stop and, without transferring or exiting the station, get on the next train until you reach the next stop. RBTH is ready to guide you on this tour of the five most interesting stations of this underground museum. Park Kultury Park Kultury. / Legion Media This station leads to Moscow’s main park, Gorky Park. The station includes five types of marble, from veined light gray to black, and other features, such as empire chandeliers and marble bas-reliefs. Park Kultury. / Legion Media These bas-reliefs were made according to the sketches of Isaac Rabinovich, who also decorated the USSR pavilion at the 1939 World’s Fair in New York. Park Kultury. / Legion Media They depict the labor and leisure activities of the Soviet people, as well as the types of activities they participated in at the famous Gorky Park, including flying model planes, dancing and playing football and tennis. Taganskaya Taganskaya. / Konstantin Kokoshkin/Global Look Press Medieval architecture is the main theme of this station's design. Intersections of arches create a kind of cross vault similar to those found in Russian boyar chambers from the 13th to 16th centuries. Taganskaya. / Legion Media The pillars are generously decorated with majolica panels, in the style of the studio of Andrea della Robbia, the famous Florentine sculptor of the 16th century. Taganskaya. / Nikolai Galkin/TASS However, instead of featuring images of Madonna, you will find profiles of heroes of the Soviet Army, such as sailors, tank operators and pilots, basking in glory with victorious banners and bayonets, painted with enamel and gilding. Komsomolskaya Komsomolskaya. / Legion Media This station was constructed to act as a type of “gateway” to Moscow because it is located under the three busiest Moscow railway terminals. Komsomolskaya. / Nikolai Galkin/TASS It represents the peak of the Stalinist Empire style with its elegant bronze chandeliers, marble arcades and monumental mosaics made from smalt. Komsomolskaya. / Legion Media Today, the station is adorned with eight mosaic panels, designed in the style of ancient temple architecture. They depict famous Russian warriors, commanders, and the leader of the Russian Revolution, Vladimir Lenin, who is portrayed giving a speech in Red Square. Novoslobodskaya Novoslobodskaya. / Legion Media This is one of the most ceremonial stations in the Moscow Metro. It is best known for its 32 stained-glass panels, which were all designed by the famous Soviet artist Pavel Korin. Novoslobodskaya. / Nikolai Galkin/TASS The stained glass windows were made in Latvia, according to Korin’s sketches, because Russia did not have a tradition of working with stained glass or any masters of the craft. Before its opening, the architects were afraid that Muscovites would associate the station with Catholic churches, but instead, they found that residents likened it to an incredible underwater world. Novoslobodskaya. / Legion Media Six of the stained-glass panels depict people from different professions including a musician, an agronomist and, of course, an architect. The remaining 26 panels contain intricate geometric patterns and stars. Kievskaya Kievskaya. / Legion Media This was the last station to be built on the Moscow Central Ring. It was built under the personal supervision of General Secretary Nikita Khrushchev, who initiated the Soviet "thaw" policy and dismantled Joseph Stalin's cult of personality. It is believed that the elegant decor was a way for Khrushchev to pay tribute to his Ukrainian homeland. Kievskaya. / Legion Media Following the opening of the station, the Soviet leader declared a "war" on excesses in architecture, thereby ensuring the unrivaled glory of this underground “palace.” Its lobby, like those at some other stations, is decorated with marble and granite, and the columns are decorated with 18 mosaic panels in the Florentine tradition. Kievskaya. / Ruslan Krivobok/RIA Novosti These bas-relief panels tell the history of relations between Russia and Ukraine, from the time of the Pereyaslav Rada in 1654 (when the Cossacks swore an oath to the Russian Tsar) to the October Revolution in 1917. The titles of the panels speak for themselves with works entitled: Pushkin in Ukraine, The Liberation of Kiev by the Soviet Army in 1943 and The Friendship of Russian and Ukrainian Collective Farmers. Read more: Take a closer look at the Moscow Metro’s most famous statues

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13 июня, 14:38

Devilishly good: an Italian spatchcock chicken recipe | A Kitchen in Rome

As Rome begins to swelter, the scent of this spicy, salty barbecued ‘devil’s chicken’ begins to waft over the rooftops. It’s a chewy, succulent treat ready to rip apart and devour with red pepper and almond stewFirst catch your cobblestone. That was the suggestion of my butcher Roberta. Years ago, driving home past the ancient city wall with her husband after a day working on the family stall on Testaccio market, they ran over something. Concerned for both the thing and their tyre, they stopped the car to discover a pair of dislodged cobblestones. Romans call cobblestones sampietrini, and much of the historic centre is still an almost living, breathing mosaic of leucite rock that dates back to the 16th century. From above they appear to be large, shiny pebbles but, dislodged, each cobble is long and bevelled, like a molar tooth complete with stumpy root; and heavy – not the sort of thing you want under a tyre. Seeing there were no visible holes nearby, Roberta picked up the wayward cobbles and took them home. They’ve been weights for her chicken “devil’s style” ever since.I didn’t go and catch a cobble, even though at the moment there are great piles of them here in Testaccio as erupted sections of sampietrini are dug up then re-laid, the chink, chick of the Selciarolo’s hammer providing a sort of metronome to increasingly hot afternoons. When I need a weight, the old iron that keeps the kitchen doors open steps in to press a pudding or a chicken deep into a pan. A brick would also work, or pan full of water according to Roberta; although that sounds like a recipe for a flood to me. Whatever you use as a weight, the chicken needs to be spatchcocked or butterflied – opened up like a book with the wings tucked in – and well seasoned. Alla diavola means “devil’s style”: think heat and naked flames (although possibly not hellish ones). In Rome the heat usually comes from loads of freshly ground black pepper. Recipes from Tuscany and Naples suggest various degrees of chilli and herbs, too. I use both black pepper and peperoncino chilli, mixing them with olive oil, which I use to baste and baste. Continue reading...

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07 июня, 15:40

Are Options Traders Betting on a Big Move in Mosaic (MOS) Stock?

Investors need to pay close attention to Mosaic (MOS) stock based on the movements in the options market lately.

07 июня, 11:18

Dividends by the Numbers in May 2017

May 2017 was easily the best May for U.S. stock market dividends since 2014. In terms of dividend cuts, the number of reductions rose month-over-month, but was reduced in the year-over-year measure. But what made the month was dividend increases and extra (or special) dividends, where both categories showed month-over-month and year-over-year increases. Before we dive into the month's numbers, let's take a look at the number of increases and cuts recorded in each month since January 2004 in the following chart, which now shows a rising trend for dividend increases and a falling trend for dividend cuts. Here is Standard and Poor's summary data for the U.S. stock market's dividends in May 2017: Some 3,536 U.S. firms issued some kind of declaration of their dividend policy during May 2017, down from 4,017 in April 2017, and down slightly from 3,542 from the same month a year earlier. Of those companies, 48 announced special dividend payments for their shareholders, up from 27 in April 2017 and also up from 37 in May 2016. Dividend increases were likewise up in the month-over-month and year-over-year totals, with 190 recorded in May 2017, compared to 152 in April 2017 and 176 back in May 2016. Three companies resumed paying dividends in May 2017, up from 2 that did so a month ago, and the same as did a year ago. There were 18 dividend cuts announced in May 2017, up slightly from 14 in April 2017, but down from the 24 that were announced in May 2016. If there was cause for concern during the month, it was to be found in the 10 firms that omitted dividends during May 2017, which was up from the 2 that took that action in April 2017, but down considerably from the 22 that did in May 2016. Taking a closer look at the history of dividend cuts since January 2004, we find that May 2017 falls within the level where there are recessionary conditions present within the U.S. economy, but below the level where there is some degree of significant economic contraction. Our real-time sampling of dividend cuts for May 2017 indicates that the month was rough on the oil & gas sector, where the impact of recent dips in the price of crude oil in both March 2017 and May 2017 may have shown up in May 2017's dividends for a number of monthly dividend payers in that industry. Meanwhile, the finance sector accounted for the second most number of dividend cuts announced during the month by industry, but perhaps the most surprising was the elevated number of chemical companies, particularly those that produce agricultural fertilizer products, that announced dividend cuts during the month, which included Terra Nitrogen (NYSE: TNH), Mosaic (NYSE: MOS) and Ashland Global Holdings (NYSE: ASH). Update: Welcome Bloomberg, Big Picture and RealClearMarkets' Off the Street fans! If you're interested in seeing more of the kind of analysis that we do here at Political Calculations, you can catch up with our latest post on the success (or lack thereof) for Philadelphia's controversial soda tax, which may have special meaning today for any readers hailing from Seattle who like sugary soft drinks! Data SourcesStandard & Poor. Monthly Dividend Action Report. [Excel Spreadsheet]. Accessed 2 June 2017.

07 июня, 11:12

Магазины одежды подняли цену на коллекции

Продавцов одежды в Украине становится все больше. В конце мая в Ассоциации ритейлеров заявили о выходе на наш одежный рынок одного из крупнейших турецких операторов — сети DeFacto. Об этом пишет UBR.ua Эксперты говорят, что […]

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06 июня, 15:10

LAST STAND FOR CHRISTIANS IN IRAQ: The disappearance of first Jews and now Christians from most part…

LAST STAND FOR CHRISTIANS IN IRAQ: The disappearance of first Jews and now Christians from most parts of the Middle East means the termination of the historical Middle Eastern mosaic of peoples. Despite periods of violence and persecution, coexistence between ethno-religious groups on the Nineveh Plains in northern Iraq, Christians, Shabak, Yazidis and Kaka’i, has […]

05 июня, 23:46

9 Beautiful Examples Of Floral-Inspired Architecture

For Architectural Digest, by Eric Allen. From Shakespeare to Georgia O’Keeffe, flowers have inspired creative minds for centuries, and in architecture, it’s no different. The natural balance of a floral bloom lends itself perfectly to structural composition, as seen in some of the most well recognized works of modern architecture around the world. Lotus flowers inspired the blossoming shape of Moshe Safdie’s ArtScience Museum in Singapore, a sculpture at Zaha Hadid’s MAXXI museum in Rome, and of course, the Lotus Temple in India. Shanghai’s Qizhong Tennis Center finds inspiration in the petals of the magnolia, while SOM’s Burj Khalifa features a Y-shaped design in homage to a spider lily. Discover AD’s selection of some of the world’s best floral-inspired structures. Lotus Temple Designed to look like it's namesake flower, the Lotus Temple in Delhi, India is a Bahá'í House of Worship open for people of every faith. The petal-shaped walls of the structure are clad in white marble from Greece. MAXXI Museum The National Museum of the 21st Century Arts, better known as MAXXI, is Zaha Hadid's Roman masterpiece and was home to this inflatable sculpture, Golden Lotus by Choi Jeong-hwa. Sheikh Zayed Mosque British artist Kevin Dean designed these intricate floral mosaics at the Sheikh Zayed Mosque in Abu Dhabi. In addition to the courtyard, his mosaics also cover some of the interior walls and floors. Marina Bay Sands Moshe Safdie found inspiration in a lotus flower for the design of the ArtScience Museum at the Marina Bay Sands resort in Singapore. Each petal features a skylight at the tip to illuminate the interior with natural light. More: 22 Incredible Indian Palaces (You Can Stay At) Burj Khalifa The three-pronged footprint of this tower in Dubai, the Burj Khalifa, is an abstraction of the spider lily, or Hymenocallis. Designed by the architects at SOM, this building is currently the tallest skyscraper in the world. Hangzhou Sports Center Designed for the 2022 Winter Olympics in Beijing, the Hangzhou Olympic Sports Center is designed by NBBJ for a lotus-like facade wrapped in white petals. Prentice Women's Hospital The Prentice Women's Hospital, now demolished but formerly a part of Northwestern University's campus in downtown Chicago, was designed with a cloverleaf layout by architect Bertrand Goldberg. Completed in 1975, the Brutalist structure was one of the first whose plans were made using computers. Quizhong Tennis Center The magnolia-inspired roof of the Qizhong Tennis Center in Shanghai features dynamic roof "petals" that can open and close depending on the weather. Grand Lisboa Located in Macau, the Grand Lisboa hotel and casino features a postmodern design that bears resemblance to a blossoming lotus. More from Architectural Digest: 126 Stunning Celebrity Homes Inside Jennifer Aniston's Gorgeous Beverly Hills Home Go Inside a $53 Million Private Jet Gisele Bündchen and Tom Brady's Incredible L.A. Mansion Tour the World’s Most Luxurious Submarine Superyacht -- This feed and its contents are the property of The Huffington Post, and use is subject to our terms. It may be used for personal consumption, but may not be distributed on a website.

05 июня, 11:51

Why Is The Mosaic Company (MOS) Down 4.2% Since the Last Earnings Report?

The Mosaic Company (MOS) reported earnings 30 days ago. What's next for the stock? We take a look at earnings estimates for some clues.

02 июня, 16:15

5 differences between the Moscow Metro and the St. Petersburg subway

1. Wi-Fi Photo credit: TASS/Roman Balaev The Muscovites have long been accustomed to fast and free Internet access underground: All subway lines have been equipped with public Wi-Fi spots since 2014. It can’t be accessed from the platforms, but you can use your mobile Internet instead. In St. Petersburg, Wi-Fi will not be available on subway trains until May 30, 2017, and will only be launched on one line, but by the end of the year, the entire subway system will be covered.   2. Old-school transit passes Photo credit: Lori/Legion-Media To take a ride on the Moscow Metro, you can buy a one-fare cardboard card for 55 rubles ($0,97) or a Troika plastic card, which can be used for ground transit and as a means of payment at some museums; you can top it up with your credit card or with cash to use it for an unlimited time. Along with the omnipresent plastic passes, the St. Petersburg subway still uses metal tokens, which are old-fashioned and therefore more charming. Travelers often keep them as souvenirs and carry them around in their wallets. The Moscow Metro stopped issuing tokens 20 years ago, and the last one was used in 1999.   3. "Horizontal elevators" Photo credit: TASS/Sergei Konkov Only in St. Petersburg can you take a ride in a "horizontal elevator": This term is used in reference to ten special stations where the trains are separated from the platform with walls and sliding metal doors. When a train stops, its doors match up with those of the station, just as elevator doors are matched to the doors on each floor of the building – hence the name of this type of station. Stations with sliding doors were introduced as an extra safety measure in case of flooding: The soil of St. Petersburg is saturated with water and features half-kilometer-thick sections of wet sand, which are prone to coming loose. Subway construction in St. Petersburg was a real challenge – Soviet engineers used liquid nitrogen to freeze the swampy ground, which increased the construction costs greatly. More than 8000 tons of liquefied gas was pumped into the ground. The first "horizontal-elevator" station was Park Pobedy, which opened in 1961.   4. Services Photo credit: Lori/Legion-Media You can use a special delivery service offered by the Moscow Metro to send a parcel across the city. To do it, you need to come to the information stand with your parcel, unsealed and not exceeding 3 kilograms, fill out a form, pay for the delivery, which costs from 100 to 550 rubles ($2-10), and notify the addressee. Aside from Moscow, the Metro offers delivery to 33 other Russian cities. You can step into the shoes of a Moscow Metro train driver on an interactive simulator, take a ride in a vintage car straight out of the 1930s, or watch historical footage and see a collection of uniforms with a guided tour around the Vystavochnaya station; tickets can be bought at the Center for Career Guidance on the second level of the entrance hall from 10.00 to 18.00. Photo credit: RIA Novosti/Eugenia Novozhenina Every day, Muscovites hastily make their commute across the network of luxurious granite underground halls to the accompaniment of live music: Street singers and musicians perform all around the subway at special locations in connecting passages between stations and entrance halls. To listen to free opera concerts or folk and rock gigs in the Moscow Metro, see the schedule (in Russian).     5. Urban legends Photo credit: Lori/Legion-Media Both subways have their own talismans, which are believed to bring you luck. Before exams, Moscow State University applicants and students rub the nose of the border guard's dog at the Ploshchad' Revolutsii station in Moscow. Those who need financial assistance rub the crest of the bronze rooster who sits at the feet of a female collective farm worker; judging by the brightness of the rooster, which is now almost 60 percent golden, against the dull brown surroundings, money matters are of great concern to the Muscovites. Would you care to see some more unusual Russian customs? Rub the code flags near the statue of the signal sailor; legend has it that you will be able to travel more if you rub them. Photo credit: TASS/Eugene Asmolov In the St. Petersburg subway, birds are a symbol of luck: if you can find the blue tit, concealed in the leaves in the mosaic Fall in the Park at the Bukharestskaya station, your wishes may come true.  

25 мая, 06:00

Are the Rich Really Less Generous Than the Poor?

A series of academic studies suggest that the wealthy are, to put it bluntly, selfish jerks. It’s an easy narrative to swallow — but is it true? A trio of economists set out to test the theory. All it took was a Dutch postal worker’s uniform, some envelopes stuffed with cash, and a slight sense of the absurd. The post Are the Rich Really Less Generous Than the Poor? appeared first on Freakonomics.

27 февраля 2013, 21:26

The 5th UN Alliance of Civilizations Global Forum opens at Vienna

Hofburg Palace, Vienna (Austria) - Speakers at the opening of the 5th Global Forum of the United Nations Alliance of Civilizations all emphasized conflict resolution using Syria as an example. Under the sparkling chandeliers of the Hofsburg Palace in Vienna, world leaders and other participants are meeting to discuss ways to further the goals of the UNAOC while encouraging more responsible leadership. The foreign minister of Austria Michael Spindelegger opened the session by stressing how his country's tradition of wanting a dialogue matches the goals of the UNAOC. That theme was later elaborated on by the country's Federal President Heinz Fischer. U.N. Secretary General Ban Ki-moon spoke about conflict resolution, job creation and specific troubles going on around the globe. "In too many places, anti-Muslim sentiment has become commonplace," Ban Ki-moon said. "Migrants from all backgrounds are vilified instead of embraced. When such attitudes are left unchallenged, racists feel empowered." He spoke at length about Syria, describing it as a 'mosaic of tribes, religion, culture and traditions. Later, during a press conference, he blamed the language of hatred for creating a divide in the world.