click links in text for more info

Blue Ridge Parkway

The Blue Ridge Parkway is a National Parkway and All-American Road in the United States, noted for its scenic beauty. The parkway, America's longest linear park, runs for 469 miles through 29 Virginia and North Carolina counties, linking Shenandoah National Park to Great Smoky Mountains National Park, it runs along the spine of the Blue Ridge, a major mountain chain, part of the Appalachian Mountains. Its southern terminus is at U. S. 441 on the boundary between Great Smoky Mountains National Park and the Cherokee Indian Reservation in North Carolina, from which it travels north to Shenandoah National Park in Virginia. The roadway continues through Shenandoah as Skyline Drive, a similar scenic road, managed by a different National Park Service unit. Both Skyline Drive and the Virginia portion of the Blue Ridge Parkway are part of Virginia State Route 48, though this designation is not signed; the parkway has been the most visited unit of the National Park System every year since 1946 except three.

Land on either side of the road is owned and maintained by the National Park Service, in many places parkway land is bordered by United States Forest Service property. The parkway was on North Carolina's version of the America the Beautiful quarter in 2015. Begun during the administration of President Franklin D. Roosevelt, the project was called the Appalachian Scenic Highway. Most construction was carried out by private contractors under federal contracts under an authorization by Harold L. Ickes in his role as federal public works administrator. Work began on September 1935, near Cumberland Knob in North Carolina. On June 30, 1936, Congress formally authorized the project as the Blue Ridge Parkway and placed it under the jurisdiction of the National Park Service; some work was carried out by various New Deal public works agencies. The Works Progress Administration did some roadway construction. Crews from the Emergency Relief Administration carried out landscape work and development of parkway recreation areas.

Personnel from four Civilian Conservation Corps camps worked on roadside cleanup, roadside plantings, grading slopes, improving adjacent fields and forest lands. During World War II, the CCC crews were replaced by conscientious objectors in the Civilian Public Service program; the parkway's construction created jobs in the region, but displaced many residents and created new rules and regulations for landowners, including requirements related to how farmers could transport crops. Residents could no longer build on their lands without permission, or develop land except for agricultural use, they were not permitted to use the parkway for any commercial travel but were required to transport equipment and materials on side roads. The Eastern Band of Cherokee Indians were affected by the parkway, built through their lands. From 1935 to 1940, they resisted giving up the right-of-way through the Qualla Boundary, they were successful in gaining more favorable terms from the U. S. government. The revised bill "specified the parkway route, assured the $40,000 payment for the tribe's land, required the state to build regular highway through the Soco Valley".

Cherokee leaders participated in the dedications. Construction of the parkway was complete by the end of 1966 with one notable exception; the 7.7-mile stretch including the Linn Cove Viaduct around Grandfather Mountain did not open until 1987. The project took over 52 years to complete; the bridge above Interstate 26 is set to be replaced in a widening project for that interstate that will begin in September 2019. The new bridge will be built just to the south of the existing bridge, so there are no foreseeable closures associated with the bridge replacement. Flowering shrubs and wildflowers dominate the parkway in the spring, including rhododendrons and dogwoods, moving from valleys to mountains as the cold weather retreats. Smaller annuals and perennials such as the daisy and aster flower through the summer. Brilliant autumn foliage occurs in September on the mountaintops, descending to the valleys by in October. In early-to-middle October and middle to late April, all three seasons can be seen by looking down from the cold and windy parkway to the green and warm valleys below.

October is dramatic, as the colored leaves stand out boldly and occur at the same time, unlike the flowers. Major trees include oak and tulip tree at lower elevations and buckeye and ash in the middle, turning into conifers such as fir and spruce at the highest elevations on the parkway. Trees near ridges and passes are distorted and contorted by the wind, persistent rime ice is deposited by passing clouds in the winter; the Blue Ridge Parkway tunnels were constructed through the rock—one in Virginia and 25 in North Carolina. Sections of the parkway near the tunnels are closed in winter; because groundwater drips from above with freezing temperatures and a lack of sunlight, ice accumulates inside these locations despite above-freezing temperatures in the surrounding areas. The highest point on the parkway is 6,053 feet above sea level on Richland Balsam at milepost 431 and is closed from November to April because of inclement weather such as snow and freezing fog from low clouds; the parkway is carried across streams, railway ravines and cross roads by 168 bridges and six viaducts.

The parkway runs from the southern terminus of Shenandoah National Park's Skyline Drive in Virg

Levitated dipole

A levitated dipole is a type of nuclear fusion reactor design using a superconducting torus, magnetically levitated inside the reactor chamber. The name refers to the magnetic dipole that forms within the reaction chamber, similar to Earth's or Jupiter's magnetospheres, it is believed that such an apparatus could contain plasma more efficiently than other fusion reactor designs. The Levitated Dipole Experiment was funded by the US Department of Energy's Office of Fusion Energy; the machine was run in a collaboration between Columbia University. Funding for the LDX was ended in November 2011 to concentrate resources on tokamak designs; the Earth's magnetic field is generated by the circulation of charges in the Earth's molten core. The resulting magnetic dipole field forms a shape with magnetic field lines passing through the Earth's center, reaching the surface near the poles and extending far into space above the equator. Charged particles entering the field will tend to follow the lines of force, moving south.

As they reach the polar regions, the magnetic lines begin to cluster together, this increasing field can cause particles below a certain energy threshold to reflect, begin travelling in the opposite direction. Such particles bounce forth between the poles until the collide with other particles. Particles with greater energy continue towards the Earth, impacting the atmosphere and causing the aurora; this basic concept is used in the magnetic mirror approach to fusion energy. The mirror uses a solenoid to confine the plasma in the center of a cylinder, two magnets at either end to force the magnetic lines closer together to create reflecting areas. One of the most promising of the early approaches to fusion, the mirror proved to be "leaky", with the fuel refusing to properly reflect from the ends as the density and energy were increased. Annoyingly, it was the particles with the most energy, those most to undergo fusion, that preferentially escaped. Research into large mirror machines ended in the 1980s as it became clear they would not reach fusion breakeven in a sized device.

The levitated dipole can be thought of, in some ways, as a toroidal mirror, much more similar to the Earth's field than the linear system in a traditional mirror. In this case, the confinement area is not the linear area between the mirrors, but the toroidal area around the outside of the central magnet, similar to the area around the Earth's equator. Particles in this area that move up or down see increasing magnetic density and tend to move back towards the equator area again; this gives the system some level of natural stability. Particles with higher energy, the ones that would escape a traditional mirror, instead follow the field lines through the hollow center of the magnet, recirculating back into the equatorial area again; this makes the Levitated Dipole unique. In those experiments, small fluctuations can cause significant energy loss. By contrast, in a dipolar magnetic field, fluctuations tend to compress the plasma, without energy loss; this compression effect was first noticed by Akira Hasegawa after participating in the Voyager 2 encounter with Uranus.

Adapting this concept to a fusion experiment was first proposed by Dr. Jay Kesner and Dr. Michael Mauel in the mid to late nineties; the pair raised money to build the machine. They achieved first plasma on Friday, August 13, 2004 at 12:53 PM. First plasma was done by levitating the dipole magnet and RF heating the plasma; the LDX team has since conducted several levitation tests, including a 40-minute suspension of the superconducting coil on February 9, 2007. Shortly after, the coil was damaged in a control test in February 2007 and replaced in May 2007; the replacement coil was inferior, a copper wound electromagnet, water cooled. Scientific results, including the observation of an inward turbulent pinch, were reported in Nature Physics; this experiment needed a special free-floating electromagnet, which created the unique "toilet-bowl" magnetic field. The magnetic field was made of two counter-wound rings of currents; each ring contained a 19-strand niobium-tin Rutherford cable. These looped around inside an Inconel magnet.

The donut was charged using induction. Once charged, it generated a magnetic field for an 8-hour period. Overall, the ring levitated 1.6 meters above a superconducting ring. The ring produced a 5-tesla field; this superconductor was encased inside a liquid helium, which kept the electromagnet below 10 kelvins. This design is similar to the D20 dipole experiment at Berkeley and the RT-1 experiment at the University of Tokyo; the dipole was suspended inside a mushroom-shaped vacuum chamber, about 5 meters in diameter and ~3 meters high. At the base of the chamber was a charging coil; this coil is used using induction. The coil exposing the dipole to a varying magnetic field. Next, the dipole is raised into the center of the chamber; this could be using the field itself. Around the outside of this chamber were Helmholtz coils, which were used to produce a uniform surrounding magnetic field; this external field would interact with the dipole field. It was in this surrounding field; the plasma forms inside the chamber.

The plasma is formed by heating a low pressure gas. The gas is heated using a radio frequency microwaving the plasma in a 17-kilowatt field; the machine was monitored

Gate of Ivrel

Gate of Ivrel is a 1976 science fiction novel by American writer C. J. Cherryh, her first published work, it is the first of four books composing the Morgaine Stories, chronicling the deeds of Morgaine, a woman consumed by a mission of the utmost importance, her chance-met companion, Nhi Vanye i Chya. It is tenuously set in her Union-Alliance universe, but has little in common with other works in that milieu; the backward land of Andur-Kursh is split into many cantons, each with ambitious clans vying for power. The loyalty of a warrior of the nobility is given to one's clan. Vanye is one of them, if only the tolerated bastard son of the ruler of one of these cantons, the result of a mere night's amusement by a Nhi lord with a captive from an enemy clan, the Chya. One day, he is brought before his father, after killing one legitimate half-brother and maiming the other with his sword, in a baiting that had gone awry. After turning down honorable suicide, he is made ilin, an exiled, clanless warrior akin to the Japanese ronin.

Hunted by his half-brothers' vengeful maternal clan, Vanye is forced to enter Morgaine's vale, a place anyone less desperate would have shunned. By chance, he releases a beautiful woman of distinctive appearance, from the Gate there. Vanye recognizes her as a legend from the past, it is winter and Vanye is weary and hungry. So when Morgaine provides food and shelter, he accepts them. Only does he remember that she, alone of all women, has been given lord-right. Morgaine is determined to complete the mission she and four companions had set out on a century before: to close the master Gate at Ivrel, she explains to Vanye that the Gates that dot the land are passageways through both time. One hundred men and women had been sent by the Union Science Bureau on a one-way mission to close all the Gates, lest humanity suffer the fate of another species; the qujal had found the Gates and tapped their powers to rule an interstellar empire of lesser beings, including humans. But one reckless fool had succumbed to temptation and gone back in time, triggering a cataclysm that had wrecked qujal civilization.

After many years, the last five Union survivors had reached this world and recruited allies to attack Thiye Thiye's-son, the master of the Gate of Ivrel. But they were betrayed and nearly their entire army was swallowed up by the Gate. Fleeing before the enemy, she had been forced to seek refuge in a lesser Gate, there to wait in stasis until freed, she seeks aid from Clan Leth, a former staunch ally, but finds it changed and its lord, half mad. His chief counselor, Chya Liell, comes to them late at night and warns them to leave before harm befalls them, killing a guard to give them no choice in the matter. Liell tries to persuade Vanye to desert Morgaine. Morgaine and Vanye travel into neighboring Chya lands and find themselves uneasy guests of Chya Roh, Vanye's cousin. After questioning and some rest, they are let go, only to be attacked by Thiye's men. Morgaine is forced to draw her sword, which turns out to be more than it seems; the two run into a Nhi band. Rather than chance another fight, the wounded Morgaine orders Vanye to bargain for shelter and protection.

She is set free, though without her sword, while he is forced to remain behind by his brother Erij, now the lord of Nhi. Erij wants his brother to help him rule, bound to him by blood; when persuasion and threats alike prove useless, he draws Changeling, not knowing its powers. Vanye takes advantage of the ensuing mayhem to retrieve the dropped sword and escape to rejoin Morgaine. Roh had warned him not to trust Liell. Morgaine confirms, she knows that Thiye has prolonged his life by this method and suspects her century-old betrayer still lives. The aged Liell's attempt to suborn Vanye takes on a more sinister aspect. After another clash with Nhi warriors, Morgaine is escorted by Roh out of his domain. Fearing her intentions, he knocks out a too-trusting Vanye when Morgaine is asleep and ties them both up, but his timing could not have been worse. Liell and his men capture all three, he takes Vanye to a Gate, intent on switching bodies. The unease of Liell's men in the unnerving presence of the Gate allows Vanye to escape.

By chance, the horse he steals is carrying Changeling. But Vanye's luck still runs bad. Erij, emboldened by his possession of Changeling and for a variety of reasons, allows himself to be persuaded to go to Ivrel. After driving off Liell's men with the deadly sword, they reach Thiye's fortress, they wait for night. Vanye takes his brother by surprise and retakes Morgaine's sword. In mortal danger, Erij has no choice. Inside, they come upon the aged Thiye. Roh informs them that Liell is dead, he warns them to flee while they still can follows his own advice. Vanye surrenders the sword to her, much to Erij's dismay, she confirms Vanye's suspicion. Fearing Morgaine, Roh/Liell had sabotaged the Gate controls so that he could escape to another world, leaving his enemies trapped here, but Morgaine believes that he left too much of a safety margin before the Gates on this world close forever and that she can follow him. She departs in

Dilili in Paris

Dilili in Paris is a 2018 French and Belgian computer-animated period adventure film written and directed by Michel Ocelot, with pre-production by Studio O and animation production by Mac Guff, about a Kanak girl investigating a mystery in Paris in the Belle Époque. It stars the voices of Prunelle Charles-Ambron, Enzo Ratsito and Natalie Dessay as Emma Calvé in the original, French-language version; the film had an invitation-only world premiere on June 11, 2018 as the opening ceremony feature, its public premiere on June 12, at the Annecy International Animation Film Festival before being released in cinemas on October 10 in France, on October 24 in Belgium and in 2019 in Germany. It won the César Award for Best Animated Feature at the 44th César Awards, it has been licensed for distribution in the United States and English-speaking Canada by Samuel Goldwyn Films, who released it in cinemas in 2019. Director and designer Michel Ocelot has said that two starting points for the production were his desire to create a work set in Paris, an separate desire to create one on the topic of male suppression and abuse of women and girls.

He chose to combine these in a narrative which takes place in the Belle Époque in the decade from 1900 to 1909, a period when several historical firsts for women in France were made. The film depicts some of the many notable historical figures who were present in the city at the time, features a fictionalized version of the opera singer Emma Calvé as a supporting character. However, it intentionally diverges from real history in its metaphorical main plot and inclusion of retrofuturist technology influenced by various works of Jules Verne and The Phantom of the Opera by Gaston Leroux; the 3D rendering style continues in that used in Azur & Asmar, in that the fabric, hair and so on of the three-dimensional models is rendered as solid colours with no shading, though it differs in that the characters' bodies are defined with a tracing effect developed from that used in Kirikou and the Men and Women. The scenery incorporates photographs, taken by Ocelot over four years, of structures which survive from the depicted era or earlier, including the Palais Garnier, Bouillon Racine, Maxim's and the Paris sewers and objects from the collections of the Musée d'Orsay, Musée de l'École de Nancy, Musée Carnavalet, Musée Rodin, Musée du quai BranlyJacques Chirac and Musée Marmottan Monet, which are used directly as two-dimensional elements or for texture mapping rather than as reference material.

Others were recreated in three dimensions, including the Eiffel Tower, based directly on architectural drawings from Gustave Eiffel's company. The digital library of the Bibliothèque nationale de France, was used for research and for two-dimensional empherea that were incorporated directly. Unlike Ocelot's two previous feature films, Tales of the Night and Kirikou and the Men and Women, Dilili has not been released in stereoscopic 3D. In North America, the film was released in cinemas in Quebec on December 21, 2018 by Axia Films and on video on demand throughout Canada by them on March 7, 2019, in both instances in French with no English options, it was released in cinemas in the United States and English-speaking Canada on October 4, 2019 by Samuel Goldwyn Films, with an English-language dub. In Australia, the film was played in cinemas as part of the 30th Alliance Française French Film Festival, which ran from March 5 to April 18, 2019 in 9 cities across the country, it was released on DVD and video on demand in Australia and New Zealand on July 10, 2019 by Madman Entertainment, in both instances in French with English subtitles only.

In China, the film was selected for competition at the 2019 Shanghai International Film Festival. At the 4th International Historical Fiction Film Festival, held in Plaisance-du-Touch in September 2018, Dilili won the Press Award for Best Feature Film. On 4 February 2019 at the 24th Lumières Awards it won Best Animated Film, on 22 February 2019 at the 44th César Awards it won the César Award for Best Animated Feature. Official web page at Wild Bunch International Sales Official web page at Michel Ocelot's official website U. S. and English-speaking Canada official web page at Samuel Goldwyn Films Quebec official web page at Axia Films Dilili in Paris on IMDb Dilili in Paris at Rotten Tomatoes

Scotland's Malt Whisky Trail

Eight malt whisky distilleries and a cooperage form the Malt Whisky Trail in Scotland's Speyside. Seven of the eight distilleries are in production and operational, whilst the Dallas Dhu distillery is an historic distillery; the Malt Whisky Trail is a local theme route marketing initiative, established to promote the region's whisky-related cultural heritage and encourage tourism. Over half of Scotland's malt whisky distilleries are in Speyside, not all of which are open to the public; the heritage trail consists of a cooperage. Benromach Cardhu Dallas Dhu Glen Grant Glen Moray Glenfiddich The Glenlivet Speyside Cooperage StrathislaA 2012 BBC article recommends a leisurely tour. "Though the distilleries are close together, leisurely travellers may want to dedicate a few days to taking in the distinct traditions and lore at each stop. Official website Interactive map of Speyside distilleries which are open to the public Spirit of Speyside Whisky Festival

Monona, Iowa

Monona is a city in Clayton County, United States. The population was 1,549 at the 2010 census; the name Monona is of American Indian origin. In 1916, Monona contained a public house, two stores, several mechanic shops. Monona is located at 43°3′5″N 91°23′26″W. According to the United States Census Bureau, the city has a total area of 1.17 square miles, all of it land. As of the census of 2010, there were 1,549 people, 675 households, 440 families living in the city; the population density was 1,323.9 inhabitants per square mile. There were 725 housing units at an average density of 619.7 per square mile. The racial makeup of the city was 98.3% White, 0.5% African American, 0.1% Native American, 0.3% Asian, 0.3% from other races, 0.6% from two or more races. Hispanic or Latino of any race were 1.0% of the population. There were 675 households of which 29.5% had children under the age of 18 living with them, 52.1% were married couples living together, 8.7% had a female householder with no husband present, 4.3% had a male householder with no wife present, 34.8% were non-families.

30.8% of all households were made up of individuals and 16.6% had someone living alone, 65 years of age or older. The average household size was 2.29 and the average family size was 2.83. The median age in the city was 42.4 years. 23.6% of residents were under the age of 18. The gender makeup of the city was 51.5 % female. As of the census of 2000, there were 1,550 people, 659 households, 432 families living in the city; the population density was 1,344.6 people per square mile. There were 706 housing units at an average density of 612.4 per square mile. The racial makeup of the city was 98.65% White, 0.06% African American, 0.58% Native American, 0.39% Asian, 0.32% from two or more races. Hispanic or Latino of any race were 0.06% of the population. There were 659 households out of which 28.7% had children under the age of 18 living with them, 55.4% were married couples living together, 5.8% had a female householder with no husband present, 34.4% were non-families. 30.3% of all households were made up of individuals and 19.0% had someone living alone, 65 years of age or older.

The average household size was 2.35 and the average family size was 2.93. Age spread: 24.1% under the age of 18, 6.5% from 18 to 24, 26.9% from 25 to 44, 19.2% from 45 to 64, 23.4% who were 65 years of age or older. The median age was 40 years. For every 100 females, there were 90.9 males. For every 100 females age 18 and over, there were 89.7 males. The median income for a household in the city was $35,000, the median income for a family was $42,679. Males had a median income of $28,942 versus $19,954 for females; the per capita income for the city was $18,746. About 5.2% of families and 7.3% of the population were below the poverty line, including 6.2% of those under age 18 and 9.0% of those age 65 or over. Leighton Abel, Iowa state politician and businessman Alexander Gardner, photographer Raef LaFrentz, basketballer MFL MarMac High School City-Data Comprehensive Statistical Data and more about Monona