Archive for February, 2019

Projections of Education Statistics to 2027

The 46th iteration of this title, heavily buttressed with numerous charts, tables, and figures, presents future trends in education from elementary levels to post-secondary institutions. For those at the college level, Section 5 is of most interest. Among the findings:

there will be a 3% increase in total enrollment by 2027 (figure 16); the increase in full-time students will be 2% while part-time enrollment will total 5% (figure 19); and there will be a 6% increase in the number of African-American students as well as a 14% increase in the number of Hispanic students, while white students will decrease by 8% (figure 21).

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2017 Digest of Education Statistics

Because of the sheer amount of data compiled and analyzed, it takes some time for a volume of this size to see the light of day. Be that as it may, this iteration, like the others before, states that “Its primary purpose is to provide a compilation of statistical information covering the broad field of American education from prekindergarten through graduate school. The Digest includes a selection of data from many sources, both government and private, and draws especially on the results of surveys and activities carried out by the National Center for Education Statistics (NCES). “(foreword)

Prior years back to 1990 can be accssed online as well; updated figures released after this volume’s publication can be perused online as well.

For those for are interested in international education, chapter six and its tables provide a wealth of information.

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Education of Racial and Ethnic Groups in the United States

A plethora of charts, along with analyses, populate this recent NCES report – Status and Trends in the Education of Racial and Ethnic Groups. From elementary education to postsecondary enrollment, this document  “Through indicators and spotlights—which examine selected topics in greater detail— …. shows that over time, increasing numbers of students in the racial/ethnic groups of White, Black, Hispanic, Asian, Native Hawaiian or Other Pacific Islander, American Indian/Alaska Native, and Two or more races have completed high school and continued their education in college.” Certain topics are broken down into sub-groups for a more comprehensive look. (Indicator 19 for college participation rates among subgroups is a case in point.)

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Cybersecurity Policies from Around the World

The UN Cyber Policy Portal lists the strategy documents, structure, key positions, responsible agencies and departments, and legislation for all 193 member-nations as well as other selected organizations. It is updated when needed and provides a one-stop resource for comparative purposes as well as delineating what each country is currently undertaking/upgrading in this rapidly evolving field.

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IEEE Open Access Option

When searching the IEEE digital library, on the advanced search screen, you have the ability to limit your search to “open access”. While not retrieving every document you are searching for because of the reduced availability of references in this mode, the open access option will give you an entree to full text journal articles and conference papers on your topic. Both searches for “cybersecurity” and “drones” garnered hundreds of full text sources. When searching, utilize the “full text and metadata” choice.

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What’s the Weather Like on Mars?

As of readings for February 20, the high temp was tolerable if you bundled up – plus 8 degrees; however, the low temp would be a tad much to handle at minus 139 degrees. This coupled with a lack of breathable air do present challenges to any manned missions. Wind speed, wind direction, and barometric pressure are also included in the daily weather reports.

Certainly not the climate from the Barsoom novels or Bradbury’s haunting The Martian Chronicles.

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Online Primary Sources for American History: W.E.B. Du Bois and the 1900 Paris Exposition

“The Paris Exposition of 1900 included a display devoted to the history and “present conditions” of African Americans. W.E.B. Du Bois and special agent Thomas J. Calloway spearheaded the planning, collection and installation of the exhibit materials, which included 500 photographs.” (About)

Primary and secondary sources are available about this event in which Du Bois played such a pivotal role; included here are his writings on the exhibit. He wished to show the progress that African Americans had made since the Civil War, but also make people aware of the roadblocks put in their way by Jim Crow.

The photos can be accessed here along with Du Bois’ remarkable infographics showing the statistical profile of African Americans over the decades. Here is one showing the growth in population from 175 to 1890; there are seventy more of these documents. (Found on pages 1 and 2 of this site.)

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New Jersey School Closings/Delays for Wednesday, February 20, 2019

Probably more afternoon actvities will be affected with this storm; check here for the latest information.

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Heads of State and Their Cabinets

Who is president of Norway? Who is the minister for environment, water, and agriculture in Saudi Arabia? The CIA has compiled listings for all governments, some of them not recognized by the United States, showing the heads of state and their various cabinet ministers. The listings are updated, some as recent as this past month.

Compare the above to the United Nations’ Heads of State, Heads of Government, Ministers for Foreign Affairs or World Statesmen.

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If You Think It’s Hot Now, Wait Until 2080

According to this study in Nature Communications – Contemporary climatic analogs for 540 North American urban areas in the late 21st century – climate change will so transform local weather that cities will then experience patterns akin to cities 280 miles south of them, so Washington, D.C. in 2080 will feel like Arkansas or Mississippi. As this article states: ” We show that climate of most urban areas will shift considerably and become either more akin to contemporary climates hundreds of kilometers away and mainly to the south or will have no modern equivalent.” (Abstract)

To see the visualizations for the 540 cities, please come here.

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New Jersey School Closings/Delays for Tuesday, February 12, 2019

This site is pretty comprehensive.

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New 2019 Threat Assessments: World Economic Forum and Pew Research Center

Two more important surveys have been recently released. In mid-January the World Economic Forum released its Global Risks Report 2019 that, inter alia, points out  “Environmental risks continue to dominate the results of our annual Global Risks Perception Survey (GRPS). This year, they accounted for three of the top five risks by likelihood and four by impact.”(6) Water crises figure prominently here.

Climate Change Still Seen as the Top Global Threat, but Cyberattacks a Rising Concern just released from Pew Research Center further reinforces the view that environmental concerns pose major security issue in the near-term.


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Online Primary Sources for American History: WWI News Clippings

Comprised of four hundred volumes totaling 80,000 pages, these press clippings were culled from United States and European papers between 1914 and 1926. Though there is no index to this vast collection, the clippings are arranged in chronological order so one can read articles, editorials, cartoons, and news reports that are in reaction to events as they played out during this conflict. The scope of this undertaking is impressive; almost all the pieces I saw have the identifying newspaper indicated along with the date. The vast majority of the clippings are in English, but given the European sources, German pieces are also available.

An informative history of the collection is available. An invaluable resource.

Hot Off The Presses: Newspapers During WWI is fairly self-explanatory.

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Online Primary Sources: Historic Canadian Newspapers

Those of you who have perused this site have seen passing references to Canadian-centric resources subsumed in writings on American history. (This entry for example.) But this time, we are looking at specific Canadian resources:

BC Historical Newspapers. (University of British Columbia)Digital copies of 167 titles.

The British Colonist (title varies over the years) allows access to an almost complete rum of this important British Columbia newspaper from 1858 – 1950. You can browse by date of use an advanced search option with multiple filters.

Canada Gazette. (Library and Archives Canada) The “official newspaper of the Canadian government. Over 160 years are available online.

Canada Online Historical Newspapers. Access to many titles, the vast majority are freely available.

French-Canadian Newspapers: An Essential Historical Source (1808-1919) (Library and Archives Canada) provides digital images of numerous papers.

Halifax Gazette.Canada’s first newspaper, published in 1752. A history of the paper is here.

Historical Canadian Newspapers Online (from Bowling Green State University) has gathered dozens of English and French titles that span the centuries. Many of the images come courtesy of the cancelled Google Newspaper Archive.

Nova Scotia Historical Newspapers (Nova Scotia Archives). Including newspapers published by those pro-British colonists forced to flee both during and after the Revolutionary War.

Victoria’s Newspapers 1858-1936 provides indices to the British Colonist. Come here to review the scope of this site.

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How Many National Emergencies Have There Been?

With the president repeating his willingness to invoke a “national emergency“, it might be well to find out what kind of national emergencies have been declared in the past for comparative purposes. Do any of you readers know we are existing under national emergencies as of this writing? Two CRS publications review prior declarations: Declarations under the National Emergencies Act, Part 1: Declarations Currently in Effect, and National Emergencies Act, Part 2: Declarations No Longer in Effect. For those interested, here is the full text of the National Emergencies Act.

A primer, A Guide to Emergency Powers and Their Use, is worth a read as well. (Don’t forget to follow the embedded links in this document for additional research.) National Emergency Powers, another valuable CRS document, should also be consulted.

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The President’s 2019 State of the Union Address

Anyone interested in watching this one-and-a-half-hour speech (one of the longest on recent memory) can view it here along with an accompanying transcript. An annotated transcript from The New York Times is available as is an annotated version from the National Academies Press. The Democratic response is here; congressional reaction is here.

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The Comings and Goings of the Trump Cabinet/Advisers Circle

The churning and turnover in the current administration is certainly high, higher than previous administrations. This feature from the Brookings Institution tracks this movement in and out of the White House. This observation is reinforced by articles in  The New York Times, NPR, and Newsweek.

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Statistics on European Cities

Prompted by a reference question I had, I have scouted around to find reliable numbers. I have found: Urban Europe: Statistics on Cities, Towns, and Suburbs (EU, 2016) that is replete with data, charts, and specific topical chapters such as “green cities” or “smart cities”; Statistics on European Cities that is Chapter 13 in the EU’s 2018 edition of its Eurostat regional yearbook; the EU’s Methodological manual on city statistics (2017) besides providing definitions pertaining to “city”, also provides a look at the various parameters examined for inclusion; a vast array of data can be found at the OECD Metropolitan area database; and the UN’s World Population Prospects sites offers aggregated information on urban areas with forecasts out to 2050.

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National Security Reports – January 2019 Update

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