North America is a continent within the Northern Hemisphere and all within the Western Hemisphere. It is bordered to the north by the Arctic Ocean, to the east by the Atlantic Ocean, to the west and south by the Pacific Ocean, to the southeast by South America and the Caribbean Sea. North America covers an area of about 24,709,000 square kilometers, about 16.5% of the earth's land area and about 4.8% of its total surface. North America is the third largest continent by area, following Asia and Africa, the fourth by population after Asia and Europe. In 2013, its population was estimated at nearly 579 million people in 23 independent states, or about 7.5% of the world's population, if nearby islands are included. North America was reached by its first human populations during the last glacial period, via crossing the Bering land bridge 40,000 to 17,000 years ago; the so-called Paleo-Indian period is taken to have lasted until about 10,000 years ago. The Classic stage spans the 6th to 13th centuries.
The Pre-Columbian era ended in 1492, the transatlantic migrations—the arrival of European settlers during the Age of Discovery and the Early Modern period. Present-day cultural and ethnic patterns reflect interactions between European colonists, indigenous peoples, African slaves and their descendants. Owing to the European colonization of the Americas, most North Americans speak English, Spanish or French, their culture reflects Western traditions; the Americas are accepted as having been named after the Italian explorer Amerigo Vespucci by the German cartographers Martin Waldseemüller and Matthias Ringmann. Vespucci, who explored South America between 1497 and 1502, was the first European to suggest that the Americas were not the East Indies, but a different landmass unknown by Europeans. In 1507, Waldseemüller produced a world map, in which he placed the word "America" on the continent of South America, in the middle of what is today Brazil, he explained the rationale for the name in the accompanying book Cosmographiae Introductio:... ab Americo inventore... quasi Americi terram sive Americam.
For Waldseemüller, no one should object to the naming of the land after its discoverer. He used the Latinized version of Vespucci's name, but in its feminine form "America", following the examples of "Europa", "Asia" and "Africa". Other mapmakers extended the name America to the northern continent, In 1538, Gerard Mercator used America on his map of the world for all the Western Hemisphere; some argue that because the convention is to use the surname for naming discoveries, the derivation from "Amerigo Vespucci" could be put in question. In 1874, Thomas Belt proposed a derivation from the Amerrique mountains of Central America. Marcou corresponded with Augustus Le Plongeon, who wrote: "The name AMERICA or AMERRIQUE in the Mayan language means, a country of perpetually strong wind, or the Land of the Wind, and... the can mean... a spirit that breathes, life itself." The United Nations formally recognizes "North America" as comprising three areas: Northern America, Central America, The Caribbean.
This has been formally defined by the UN Statistics Division. The term North America maintains various definitions in accordance with context. In Canadian English, North America refers to the land mass as a whole consisting of Mexico, the United States, Canada, although it is ambiguous which other countries are included, is defined by context. In the United States of America, usage of the term may refer only to Canada and the US, sometimes includes Greenland and Mexico, as well as offshore islands. In France, Portugal, Romania and the countries of Latin America, the cognates of North America designate a subcontinent of the Americas comprising Canada, the United States, Mexico, Greenland, Saint Pierre et Miquelon, Bermuda. North America has been referred to by other names. Spanish North America was referred to as Northern America, this was the first official name given to Mexico. Geographically the North American continent has many subregions; these include cultural and geographic regions. Economic regions included those formed by trade blocs, such as the North American Trade Agreement bloc and Central American Trade Agreement.
Linguistically and culturally, the continent could be divided into Latin America. Anglo-America includes most of Northern America and Caribbean islands with English-speaking populations; the southern North American continent is composed of two regions. These are the Caribbean; the north of the continent maintains recognized regions as well. In contrast to the common definition of "North America", which encompasses the whole continent, the term "North America" is sometimes used to refer only to Mexico, the United States, Greenland; the term Northern America refers to the northern-most countries and territories of North America: the United States, Bermuda, St. Pierre and Miquelon and Greenland. Although the term does not refer to a unifie
Savage Reign is a 1995 futuristic-themed competitive fighting game released by SNK for their Neo Geo arcade and home platform. It was ported to the Neo Geo CD, as well as for the PlayStation 2 along with its sequel Kizuna Encounter in Japan only; this compilation was re-released in the PlayStation Store for PlayStation 4 in December 2016 Savage Reign is set in the first half of the 21st century in the fictional city of South Town, which has now been upgraded and renamed as Jipang City. A mysterious legendary fighter known only as King Leo has risen up from the shadows of secrecy and issued a challenge on television for the strongest of fighters to battle against him in a fighting tournament known as the Battle of the Beast God, he promises immense wealth beyond anyone's dreams and legendary fame beyond imagination. Nine fighters have come to the tournament, each with their own sole purpose and reason for battling against King Leo; the game, much like Samurai Shodown, is a weapons fighter. However, Savage Reign has a few particular elements that makes it different from its predecessor: The weapons can not only be used for close combat, but can be thrown at an opponent from a distance for more ranged attacks.
There are two levels of playing field within the battles. The button layout was slightly different at the time, resembling World Heroes somewhat: a button for punching, a button for kicking, a button for the weapon and a button for jumping between planes. Much like Art of Fighting, the camera will zoom in on your character and the character they are fighting against if they are within close proximity to each other and like Fatal Fury, the characters can fight each other using a two line battle system. Sho Hayate - The main protagonist of the series. A young Japanese man who aims to prove the strength of Fu'un-Ken: a special style of fighting that combines martial arts with the mastery of the boomerang. Hayate is best known for his calm yet brash attitude and that he always initiates a strong battle cry in combat. Carol Stanzack - A beautiful young French female gymnast, being forced to marry King Leo by her father Jeanrick, she is annoyed by this, fights to break this commitment. Carol fights with a mixture of a pink Olympic gymnast ball, her own acrobatic skills, aikido.
Max Eagle - An undefeated pro wrestler, interested in the challenge. His ulterior motive for entering the tournament is that he seeks on whether or not King Leo is his missing older brother. Eagle fights with a couple of wrestling moves, it is to be noted that the wrestling organization Eagle works for is the same one used in the SNK arcade game 3 Count Bout. Gordon Bowman - A successful police officer who carries an electric stun tonfa, his young daughter Canbee is deathly ill and that he heads to the tournament for the prize money so that he can help support her medical attention. Chung Paifu - An old sennin who decides to enter the tournament due to a past conflict between him and King Leo, his cap was given to him by a man known only as the "Legendary Wolf." Chung fights with a wooden cane and can go into Ikari mode if his cap is knocked off his head from within battle. Gozu - A red-clad ninja who uses fire-based attacks with his Fire Claws, he is a member of a terrorist organization called the Jaguar, along with his young brother Mezu, he is out for revenge against King Leo due to the fact that King Leo had killed their brother Kazuo from within a past incident.
Mezu - A blue-clad ninja who uses water and ice-based attacks with his Ice Claws. Much like his older brother Gozu, he is a member of the Jaguar and is determined to avenge the death of their brother Kazuo, killed by King Leo from within a past incident. Joker - A clown-like fighter who happens to be the leader of a violent street gang known as the Looly Po Po. Joker uses his unusual appearance and his strange weaponry as his fighting tools, his motivations for entering the tournament is to gain glory for his gang. His real name is Marco Bariadrid. Nicola Zaza - A young Russian super genius who constructed both a Super Shield and a Super Suit. Nicola participates in the tournament to test the depths of his own creations. Nicola uses a supercharged flying disc in battle. King Lion - An unknown and mysterious man who works for King Leo as a fake impersonator. Much like King Leo, King Lion wields "The Sword of Leo" and utilizes the same fighting style that King Leo has, though as not so powerful as his master.
King Leo - The final boss and main antagonist of the series. The mysterious legendary fighter, responsible for creating and sponsoring the Battle of the Beast God tournament, King Leo is a strong and ruthless warrior who wields "The Sword of Leo" and that he had made the fake impersonator King Lion as a way to test his opponent out before he would come and battle them from within his own accord. Reviewing the Neo Geo home version, Major Mike of GamePro summarized, "Savage Reign is one of those impressive fighting games that's to disappear soon after it surfaces, it looks great and the sound is dynamite, but in the end it falls short because it lacks an identity to separate it from the multitude of fighting games out there." He reviewed the Neo Geo CD version with sim
Taekwondo is a Korean martial art, characterized by its emphasis on head-height kicks and spinning kicks, fast kicking techniques. Taekwondo is a combative sport and was developed during the 1940s and 1950s by Korean martial artists with experience in martial arts such as karate, Chinese martial arts, indigenous Korean martial arts traditions such as Taekkyeon and Gwonbeop; the oldest governing body for taekwondo is the Korea Taekwondo Association, formed in 1959 through a collaborative effort by representatives from the nine original kwans, or martial arts schools, in Korea. The main international organisational bodies for taekwondo today are the International Taekwon-Do Federation, founded by Choi Hong Hi in 1966, the partnership of the Kukkiwon and World Taekwondo, founded in 1972 and 1973 by the Korea Taekwondo Association. Gyeorugi, a type of full-contact sparring, has been an Olympic event since 2000; the governing body for taekwondo in the Olympics and Paralympics is World Taekwondo.
Beginning in 1945, shortly after the end of World War II, new martial arts schools called kwans opened in Seoul. These schools were established by Korean martial artists with backgrounds in Japanese and Korean martial arts; the umbrella term traditional taekwondo refers to the martial arts practiced by the kwans during the 1940s and 1950s, though in reality the term "taekwondo" had not yet been coined at that time, indeed each Kwan was practicing its own unique style of martial art. During this time taekwondo was adopted for use by the South Korean military, which increased its popularity among civilian martial arts schools. After witnessing a martial arts demonstration by the military in 1952, South Korean President Syngman Rhee urged that the martial arts styles of the kwans be merged. Beginning in 1955 the leaders of the kwans began discussing in earnest the possibility of creating a unified style of Korean martial arts; the name Tae Soo Do was used to describe this unified style. This name consists of the hanja 跆 tae "to stomp, trample", 手 su "hand" and 道 do "way, discipline".
Choi Hong Hi advocated the use of the name Tae Kwon Do, i.e. replacing su "hand" by 拳 kwon "fist", the term used for "martial arts" in Chinese. The new name was slow to catch on among the leaders of the kwans. In 1959 the Korea Taekwondo Association was established to facilitate the unification of Korean martial arts. In 1966, Choi broke with the KTA to establish the International Taekwon-Do Federation - a separate governing body devoted to institutionalizing his own style of taekwondo. Cold War politics of the 1960s and 1970s complicated the adoption of ITF-style taekwondo as a unified style, however; the South Korean government wished to avoid North Korean influence on the martial art. Conversely, ITF president Choi Hong Hi sought support for the martial art from all quarters, including North Korea. In response, in 1973 South Korea withdrew its support for the ITF; the ITF continued to function as an independent federation headquartered in Toronto, Canada. After Choi's retirement, the ITF split in 2001 and again in 2002 to create three separate federations each of which continues to operate today under the same name.
In 1973 the South Korean government's Ministry of Culture and Tourism established the Kukkiwon as the new national academy for taekwondo. Kukkiwon now serves many of the functions served by the KTA, in terms of defining a government-sponsored unified style of taekwondo. In 1973 the KTA and Kukkiwon supported the establishment of the World Taekwondo Federation to promote taekwondo as an international sport. WT competitions employ Kukkiwon-style taekwondo. For this reason, Kukkiwon-style taekwondo is referred to as WT-style taekwondo, sport-style taekwondo, or Olympic-style taekwondo, though in reality the style is defined by the Kukkiwon, not the WTF. Since 2000, taekwondo has been one of only two Asian martial arts that are included in the Olympic Games, it started as a demonstration event at the 1988 games in Seoul, a year after becoming a medal event at the Pan Am Games, became an official medal event at the 2000 games in Sydney. In 2010, taekwondo was accepted as a Commonwealth Games sport.
Taekwondo is characterized by its emphasis on head-height kicks and spinning kicks, fast kicking techniques. In fact, World Taekwondo sparring competitions award additional points for strikes that incorporate spinning kicks, kicks to the head, or both. To facilitate fast, turning kicks, taekwondo adopts stances that are narrower and taller than the broader, wide stances used by martial arts such as karate; the tradeoff of decreased stability is believed to be worth the commensurate increase in agility in Kukkiwon-style taekwondo. The emphasis on speed and agility is a defining characteristic of taekwondo and has its origins in analyses undertaken by Choi Hong Hi; the results of that analysis are known by ITF practitioners as Choi's Theory of Power. Choi based his understanding of power on biomechanics and Newtonian physics as well as Chinese martial arts. For example, Choi observed that the power of a strike increases quadratically with the speed of the strike, but increases only linearly with the mass of the striking object.
In other words, speed is more important than size in terms of generating power. This principle w
1996 in video gaming
1996 has seen many sequels and prequels in video games and several new titles such as Blazing Heroes, Super Mario 64, NiGHTS into Dreams... Crash Bandicoot, Resident Evil, Dead or Alive, Duke Nukem 3D and Tomb Raider. May 16–18 — The second annual E3 is held in Los Angeles, United States. February 21 — Sega Model 3, an arcade system board considered to have the most technically impressive graphics at the time November 23 — Bandai's Tamagotchi virtual pet handheld Nintendo's Nintendo 64, the first true 64-bit home console Nintendo's Game Boy Pocket handheld console Sega's Net Link modem for the Sega Saturn home console SNK's Neo Geo CDZ Namco's Alpine Racer arcade game, including a new type of user interface February — Blizzard Entertainment acquires a development group known as Condor, renaming it Blizzard North February 13 — Atari Corporation announces a plan to merge with JTS Corp. April — Eidos Interactive acquires CentreGold plc, which holds Core Design and U. S. Gold May 1 — GameSpot and GameFAQs are launched June — Firaxis Games is formed By Jeff Briggs with Sid Meier and Brian Reynolds July — GT Interactive purchases Humongous Entertainment July 24 — CUC International, Inc purchases Sierra On-Line, Blizzard Entertainment and Davidson & Associates for about $3 billion in a stock swap.
August 6 — AOL buys Sierra's ImagiNation Network from AT&T for a reported $15m. August 24 — Valve Corporation is founded. September 1 — AOL closes ImagiNation Network, the first online video game with graphics, after 5 years of service. November 13 — Tom Clancy and Virtus Corp. found Red Storm Entertainment, headed by Doug Littlejohns Infogrames Entertainment SA acquires Ocean Software Ltd. Midway Games, Inc. acquires Atari Games Corp. from Warner Communications Inc. Technos Japan Corporation, originator of the Nekketsu Kouha Kunio Kun series and Double Dragon series, goes out of business Black Isle Studios forms as a division by Interplay; the 3DO Company purchases New World Computing 1996 saw a major shakeup in the crowded home console market, with the Virtual Boy, Atari Jaguar, 3DO Interactive Multiplayer, Sega CD, 32X, CD-i all being discontinued
Gymnastics is a sport that includes exercises requiring balance, flexibility, agility and endurance. The movements involved in gymnastics contribute to the development of the arms, shoulders, back and abdominal muscle groups. Alertness, daring, self-confidence and self-discipline are mental traits that can be developed through gymnastics. Gymnastics evolved from exercises used by the ancient Greeks that included skills for mounting and dismounting a horse, from circus performance skills The most common form of competitive gymnastics is artistic gymnastics which consists of floor, vault and uneven bars. For boys they have floor, rings, parallel bars and horizontal bar. Other FIG disciplines include rhythmic gymnastics and tumbling, acrobatic gymnastics, aerobic gymnastics and parkour. Disciplines not recognized by FIG include wheel gymnastics, aesthetic group gymnastics, men's rhythmic gymnastics, TeamGym and mallakhamba. Participants can include children as young as 1 years old doing kindergym and children's gymnastics, recreational gymnasts of ages 2 and up, competitive gymnasts at varying levels of skill, world-class athletes.
The word "gymnastics" derives from the common Greek adjective γυμνός, by way of the related verb γυμνάζω, whose meaning is to "train naked", "train in gymnastic exercise" "to train, to exercise". The verb had this meaning, because athletes in ancient times exercised and competed without clothing, it came into use in the 1570s, from Latin gymnasticus, from Greek gymnastikos "fond of or skilled in bodily exercise," from gymnazein "to exercise or train". Gymnastics developed in ancient Greece, in Sparta and Athens, was used as a method to prepare men for warfare. In Sparta, among the activities introduced into the training program was the Agoge or exhibition gymnastics made up of gymnastic elements in the form of the Pyrrhic-a dance in a military style-performed for state dignitaries in the final year of a student's training; the maneuvers were performed naked except for the tools of war. Athens combined this more physical training with the education of the mind. At the Palestra, a physical education training center, the discipline of educating the body and educating the mind were combined allowing for a form of gymnastics, more aesthetic and individual and which left behind the form that focused on strictness, the emphasis on defeating records, focus on strength.
Don Francisco Amorós y Ondeano, was born on February 19, 1770, in Valencia and died on August 8, 1848, in Paris. He was a Spanish colonel, the first person to introduce educative gymnastic in France. John promoted the use of parallel bars and high bars in international competition; the Federation of International Gymnastics was founded in Liege in 1881. By the end of the nineteenth century, men's gymnastics competition was popular enough to be included in the first "modern" Olympic Games in 1896. From on until the early 1950s, both national and international competitions involved a changing variety of exercises gathered under the rubric, that included, for example, synchronized team floor calisthenics, rope climbing, high jumping and horizontal ladder. During the 1920s, women participated in gymnastics events; the first women's Olympic competition was limited, only involving synchronized calisthenics and track and field. These games were held in Amsterdam. By 1954, Olympic Games apparatus and events for both men and women had been standardized in modern format, uniform grading structures had been agreed upon.
At this time, Soviet gymnasts astounded the world with disciplined and difficult performances, setting a precedent that continues. Television has helped initiate a modern age of gymnastics. Both men's and women's gymnastics now attract considerable international interest, excellent gymnasts can be found on every continent. In 2006, a new points system for Artistic gymnastics was put into play. With an A Score being the difficulty score, which as of 2009 is based on the top 8 high scoring elements in a routine; the B Score, is the score for execution, is given for how well the skills are performed. The following disciplines are governed by FIG. Artistic Gymnastics is divided into Men's and Women's Gymnastics. Men compete on six events: Floor Exercise, Pommel Horse, Still Rings, Parallel Bars, Horizontal Bar, while women compete on four: Vault, Uneven Bars, Balance Beam, Floor Exercise. In some countries, women at one time competed on the rings, high bar, parallel bars. In 2006, FIG introduced a new points system for Artistic gymnastics in which scores are no longer limited to 10 points.
The system is used in the US for elite level competition. Unlike the old code of points, there are two separate scores, an execution score and a difficulty score. In the previous system, the "execution score" was the only score, it was and still is out except for short exercises. During the gymnast's performance, the judges deduct this score only. A fall, on or off the event, is a 1.00 deduction, in elite level gymnastics. The introduction of the difficulty score is a significant change; the gymnast's difficulty score is based on what elements they perform and is subject to change if they do not perform or complete all the skills, or they do not connect a skill meant to be connected to another. Connection bonuses are where deviation happens most common between the intended and actual difficulty scores, as it can be difficult to connect multiple flight elements, it is ha
Real Bout Fatal Fury
Real Bout Fatal Fury is a 1995 fighting game released by SNK for the Neo-Geo arcade and home platforms. It is the fifth installment in the Fatal Fury series, following Fatal Fury 3: Road to the Final Victory. Ports of Real Bout were released for PlayStation and the Sega Saturn; the game was included in Fatal Fury Battle Archives Vol. 2, a compilation released for the PlayStation 2. In March 2017, this compilation was re-released in the PlayStation Store on PlayStation 4. Real Bout changes the play controls from the previous Fatal Fury games, reducing the number of attack buttons from four to three: a standard punch and kick button, a "Strong Attack" button which can be either a stronger punch or kick attack, depending on the character; the game retains the three-plane "oversway" system from Fatal Fury 3, which features a main lane for fighting, with foreground and background planes used to avoid attacks or leap towards the opponent. A dedicated button is now used to make an "oversway" towards the foreground.
Real Bout introduces a Power Gauge, which fills up as the player performs normal or special techniques against their opponent or defend themselves, similar to many super move gauges featured in other fighting games. The Power Gauge allows players to perform one of three types of Special Techniques, depending of the level of the Power Gauge; when the gauge is at least half-full and colored yellow, the player can perform "Guard Cancels", which are special counterattacks that can be performed by the player after blocking an opponent's attack. They do not consume any filled portion of the Power Gauge; when the Power Gauge reaches MAX level while the player still has more than half of their life gauge remaining the Power Gauge will enter "S. Power" level; the energy in the Power Gauge will begin to deplete and during that time, the player can perform "Guard Cancels" or a "Super Special Move". However, once a Super Special Move is performed, the remaining energy in the Power Gauge will be consumed and the Power Gauge will return to its initial state.
When the Power Gauge reaches MAX level while the player has less than half of their life gauge remaining, the Power Gauge will enter "P. Power" level. In this state, the Power Gauge will drain, but the player can perform both Guard Cancels and Super Specials indefinitely until the gauge runs out; the player can perform a "Hidden Ability", an more powerful Special Move, which will consume the remaining Power Gauge at this state. Real Bout introduces stages with ring-outs, a gameplay feature introduced in 3D fighting games such as Virtua Fighter, but the out of bounds areas are guarded by barriers. If a fighter's attacks force the opponent to hit a barrier enough times, the barrier is destroyed, a fighter can win by knocking the opponent out of bounds; the normal chain combo system, including in the mid-air, is similar to that of X-Men: Children of the Atom. The game retains the character roster from Fatal Fury 3, with the boss characters now part of the regular cast. Duck King, Billy Kane and Kim Kaphwan, who were all last featured in Fatal Fury Special, are added to the cast.
Series antagonist Geese Howard reprises his role from the original Fatal Fury as the game's final boss. Real Bout was Geese Howard's final appearance in the Fatal Fury storyline, as the game's ending with Terry or Andy depicts the character's demise at the hands of either brother by falling off the roof of his tower, refusing to be saved by them; this was reflected by SNK's tagline for the game, "So long, Geese!". Electronic Gaming Monthly gave the Neo Geo AES version their "Game of the Month" award, their four reviewers applauded the pits, the overhauled personality of the characters, the high end graphics, the humor. Andrew Baran described the game as "intense, both in speed and pyrotechnics." Major Mike of GamePro deemed it a major improvement over Fatal Fury 3: Road to the Final Victory, citing the greater effectiveness of the characters Bob and Mary, the more refined combo system, the inclusion of moves which were taken out of the previous game. He criticized the reduction from four action buttons to three, the reuse of Geese Howard as the final boss, the music, but concluded that "With its emphasis on gameplay, this is one of the best Fatal Fury games ever."
A reviewer for Next Generation echoed this sentiment: "The characters from the Fatal Fury series are all here and their moves have all been balanced to make this one of the best Fatal Fury titles ever." He characterized the game as a refinement drawn from the countless hours SNK had spent making 2D fighting games. While they derided the game's lack of originality its similarity to the previous installment Fatal Fury 3, Maximum assessed it as "a well-rounded and entertaining fighting title", they approved of the oversway system, the barriers preventing easy ring outs, the balanced difficulty of the one-player mode, the two-player battles. Real Bout Fatal Fury at the Killer List of Videogames
China the People's Republic of China, is a country in East Asia and the world's most populous country, with a population of around 1.404 billion. Covering 9,600,000 square kilometers, it is the third- or fourth-largest country by total area. Governed by the Communist Party of China, the state exercises jurisdiction over 22 provinces, five autonomous regions, four direct-controlled municipalities, the special administrative regions of Hong Kong and Macau. China emerged as one of the world's earliest civilizations, in the fertile basin of the Yellow River in the North China Plain. For millennia, China's political system was based on hereditary monarchies, or dynasties, beginning with the semi-legendary Xia dynasty in 21st century BCE. Since China has expanded, re-unified numerous times. In the 3rd century BCE, the Qin established the first Chinese empire; the succeeding Han dynasty, which ruled from 206 BC until 220 AD, saw some of the most advanced technology at that time, including papermaking and the compass, along with agricultural and medical improvements.
The invention of gunpowder and movable type in the Tang dynasty and Northern Song completed the Four Great Inventions. Tang culture spread in Asia, as the new Silk Route brought traders to as far as Mesopotamia and Horn of Africa. Dynastic rule ended in 1912 with the Xinhai Revolution; the Chinese Civil War resulted in a division of territory in 1949, when the Communist Party of China established the People's Republic of China, a unitary one-party sovereign state on Mainland China, while the Kuomintang-led government retreated to the island of Taiwan. The political status of Taiwan remains disputed. Since the introduction of economic reforms in 1978, China's economy has been one of the world's fastest-growing with annual growth rates above 6 percent. According to the World Bank, China's GDP grew from $150 billion in 1978 to $12.24 trillion by 2017. Since 2010, China has been the world's second-largest economy by nominal GDP and since 2014, the largest economy in the world by purchasing power parity.
China is the world's largest exporter and second-largest importer of goods. China is a recognized nuclear weapons state and has the world's largest standing army and second-largest defense budget; the PRC is a permanent member of the United Nations Security Council as it replaced the ROC in 1971, as well as an active global partner of ASEAN Plus mechanism. China is a leading member of numerous formal and informal multilateral organizations, including the Shanghai Cooperation Organization, WTO, APEC, BRICS, the BCIM, the G20. In recent times, scholars have argued that it will soon be a world superpower, rivaling the United States; the word "China" has been used in English since the 16th century. It is not a word used by the Chinese themselves, it has been traced through Portuguese and Persian back to the Sanskrit word Cīna, used in ancient India."China" appears in Richard Eden's 1555 translation of the 1516 journal of the Portuguese explorer Duarte Barbosa. Barbosa's usage was derived from Persian Chīn, in turn derived from Sanskrit Cīna.
Cīna was first used including the Mahābhārata and the Laws of Manu. In 1655, Martino Martini suggested that the word China is derived from the name of the Qin dynasty. Although this derivation is still given in various sources, it is complicated by the fact that the Sanskrit word appears in pre-Qin literature; the word may have referred to a state such as Yelang. The meaning transferred to China as a whole; the origin of the Sanskrit word is still a matter of debate, according to the Oxford English Dictionary. The official name of the modern state is the "People's Republic of China"; the shorter form is "China" Zhōngguó, from zhōng and guó, a term which developed under the Western Zhou dynasty in reference to its royal demesne. It was applied to the area around Luoyi during the Eastern Zhou and to China's Central Plain before being used as an occasional synonym for the state under the Qing, it was used as a cultural concept to distinguish the Huaxia people from perceived "barbarians". The name Zhongguo is translated as "Middle Kingdom" in English.
Archaeological evidence suggests that early hominids inhabited China between 2.24 million and 250,000 years ago. The hominid fossils of Peking Man, a Homo erectus who used fire, were discovered in a cave at Zhoukoudian near Beijing; the fossilized teeth of Homo sapiens have been discovered in Fuyan Cave in Hunan. Chinese proto-writing existed in Jiahu around 7000 BCE, Damaidi around 6000 BCE, Dadiwan from 5800–5400 BCE, Banpo dating from the 5th millennium BCE; some scholars have suggested. According to Chinese tradition, the first dynasty was the Xia, which emerged around 2100 BCE; the dynasty was considered mythical by historians until scientific excavations found early Bronze Age sites at Erlitou, Henan in 1959. It remains unclear whether these sites are the remains of the Xia dynasty or of another culture from the same period; the succeeding Shang dynasty is the earliest to be confirmed by contemporary records. The Shang ruled the plain of the Yellow River in eastern China from the 17th to the 11th century BCE.
Their oracle bone script