Feeds:
Posts
Comments

Posts Tagged ‘croatia’

Here’s a story from Total Croatia News, which I am not quite sure how I found. Probably a link on ArtsJournal or Facebook or Twitter. I can’t claim to read it regularly.

Daniela Rogulj wrote back in December that with its open digital library, Croatia is the first Free Reading Zone. The top 100,000 digital books from around the world — both bestsellers and academic books — are available without any cost, card, or code.

You do need to be within Croatia’s borders, and you have to download the free “Croatia Reads” app on Android or IOS smartphones and tablets.

The concept was tested early last autumn at Zagreb’s Velvet Café, and it worked. The generous support of sponsors enables publishers and authors to be paid when books are read.

More at Total Croatia News, here, and at Publishing Perspectives, here.

Now I’m wondering what’s on the book list. (Asakiyume: Offer your book?)

Photo: Digital Media Diet
The digitizing of books has enabled Croatia to become the world’s first Free Reading Zone. If you are in Croatia, download the “Croatia Reads” app for access to 100,000 bestselling and academic books.

 

Read Full Post »

Photo: Odd Music
Croatia’s
Morske Orgulje — or, Sea Organ.

An architectural construction in Croatia enables the sea to play music as it flows in and out. I learned about it at the Huffington Post, where Carla Herreria has a report on the Morske Orgulje — or, Sea Organ.

“A 230-foot long instrument on the coast of Zadar, Croatia, that plays mesmerizing harmonies using the movements of the sea, the Sea Organ was conceived in 2005 by architect Nikola Bašić, after a new jetty was built to welcome cruise ships. …

“On its surface, the organ looks like large marble steps leading into the Adriatic Sea. Below, however, lies a series of narrow channels that connect to 35 organ pipes. Each set of steps holds five organ pipes each and is tuned to a different musical chord.

“As waves and wind push air through the channels, a song pours through the organ pipes and out onto the steps above. The sounds produced rely completely on the wave energy’s random time and space distribution.”

More at Wikipedia, here, and at the Huffington Post, here.

Read Full Post »

Sometimes I wish I lived closer to where the migrants are pouring into Europe. When I read, for example, about all that Germany is doing, how organized the country is about getting people acclimated, helping with housing and language, it makes me want to sign up. In Samos, Greece, Suzanne’s friend’s family spent weeks buying and distributing food, diapers, and other necessities.

Mark Turner writes at UNHCR Tracks about a chef who acted on his impulse to do his bit. He “packed his knives, drove to Croatia and started cooking.

“After serving up 6,000 piping-hot meals for refugees, the Swedish chef’s big wooden spoon is looking worse for wear.

“ ‘It wasn’t broken when I began,’ says Victor Ullman, a 27-year-old from Lund, displaying a large wedge-shaped hole as he pulls it from a simmering pot.

“But long days and nights serving stew to thousands of Syrians, Afghans, Iraqis and many others have taken their toll. ‘As long as I am awake, I am cooking,’ he says. …

“We’re in Bapska, Croatia, a few hundred metres from the border with Serbia, where tens of thousands of refugees have [crossed], seeking safety in Europe.

“They arrive by foot, in baby strollers, in wheelchairs, hour after hour, day after day, wet, hungry, exhausted, on an epic trek towards the unknown.

“And all along the way they are met by an army of volunteers from across Europe, drawn by an overwhelming desire to help.

“There’s Florian, the small farmer from Austria; Ghais, a Syrian who made it to Europe last year; Livija, a trainee pizza maker from Berlin; Stefan, a long-distance walker (‘3,200 kilometres in 82 days!”’); Danjella, a former refugee from Bosnia.

“There are activists and BMW workers, students, sociologists and physiotherapists, sporting fluorescent yellow waistcoats marked with their name and spoken languages, reassuring the crowds, united by a sense of shared humanity.”

Victor “also feeds the aid workers and the Croatian police, who he says are good guys doing their best. ‘They call me the crazy Swede,’ he adds.

“Victor shows me a pair of boots given to him by one policeman, after he’d given his own shoes away to a refugee. ‘I love these shoes,’ he says. ‘They’re like a memory from here – one of them. Spread the love!’ ” More here.

(Jane D: thanks for the lead on twitter.)

Photo: Igor Pavicevic

Read Full Post »

You never know what curiosity is going to turn up on AndrewSullivan.com, which is why I am a paying member of that blog (the posts are mostly free, except for a few jumps). Here Andrew links to a story about bees that are sniffing out deadly landmines.

As Olivia Solon writes at Wired, “A team of Croatian researchers are training honeybees to sniff out unexploded mines that still pepper the Balkans.

Nikola Kezic, a professor in the Department of Agriculture at Zagreb University, has been exploring using bees to find landmines since 2007. Croatia, Bosnia-Hercegovina and other countries from former Yugoslavia still have around 250,000 buried mines which were left there during the wars of the early 90s. Since the end of the war more than 300 people have been killed in Croatia alone by the explosives, including 66 de-miners.

“Tracking down the mines can be extremely costly and dangerous. However, by training bees — which are able to detect odours from 4.5 kilometres away — to associate the smell of TNT with sugar can create an affective way of identifying the locations of mines.

“Kezic leads a multimillion-pound programme sponsored by the EU, called Tiramisu, to detect landmines across the continent. … The movements of the bees are tracked from afar using thermal cameras. Bees have the advantage of being extremely small and so don’t run the risk of setting off the explosives in the same way that trained mammals such as dogs or rats do.” More at Wired.

Andrew also links to posts on a mysterious illness affecting bee populations, an international concern. The cause, still under investigation, may relate to a pesticide.

Photo:: United States Department of Agriculture

Read Full Post »

%d bloggers like this: