Nerd alert — The sequel!

1 07 2008

This weekend I attended the Driven Conference…it’s for young adults in the Grace Brethren Church…sort of…

Anyway, aside from all of the Christ-centric things I took away from the weekend, I discovered this little nugget of a website (thanks to James Joiner for the word):

http://www.mapsofwar.com

Here’s a taste:

It’s completely rad. Check it out.

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Politics schmolitics

28 01 2008

A while back I stumbled upon an indispensable tool for nerdily wasting time. At http://uselectionatlas.org/, you can view detailed maps tracking the voting patterns in presidential elections since 1789 (Senatorial and gubernatorial results are included too, but not as far back). The site breaks the country down into individual states — you can even see county-by-county results!

Where else can you so easily find out that John Jay garnered 9 electoral votes in 1789?

…Or that voter turnout hasn’t been above 55.3% since 1968?

…Or that Progressive Party candidate Robert LaFollette, a man who uttered the words “the will of the people shall be the law of the land,” received 16.61% of the popular vote in 1924? Those were heady days, friends!

Educate thyself!

pe1924.png

Red=Democratic; Blue=Republican; Green=Progressive





Nerd alert!

22 01 2008

I watched “Life After Humans” on The History Channel tonight. It was a two-hour program that imagined — through computer simulations and “expert” testimony — what life would be like on Earth if humans suddenly vanished. It wasn’t too hard to get past the idea of computer-animated wolves and feral cats taking over the depopulated planet. This is what I couldn’t stomach: it ain’t history, folks.

I miss the days when The History Channel was filled with studies of past civilizations, military battles and significant figures. Now it’s chock full of reality shows and paranormal investigations.

I shouldn’t complain too much. There are some shining examples of history-related programs on the network — “Cities of the Underworld,” for example. Mostly I wish my cable system had The History Channel International.