The United States of America known as the United States or America, is a country composed of 50 states, a federal district, five major self-governing territories, various possessions. At 3.8 million square miles, the United States is the world's third or fourth largest country by total area and is smaller than the entire continent of Europe's 3.9 million square miles. With a population of over 327 million people, the U. S. is the third most populous country. The capital is Washington, D. C. and the largest city by population is New York City. Forty-eight states and the capital's federal district are contiguous in North America between Canada and Mexico; the State of Alaska is in the northwest corner of North America, bordered by Canada to the east and across the Bering Strait from Russia to the west. The State of Hawaii is an archipelago in the mid-Pacific Ocean; the U. S. territories are scattered about the Pacific Ocean and the Caribbean Sea, stretching across nine official time zones. The diverse geography and wildlife of the United States make it one of the world's 17 megadiverse countries.
Paleo-Indians migrated from Siberia to the North American mainland at least 12,000 years ago. European colonization began in the 16th century; the United States emerged from the thirteen British colonies established along the East Coast. Numerous disputes between Great Britain and the colonies following the French and Indian War led to the American Revolution, which began in 1775, the subsequent Declaration of Independence in 1776; the war ended in 1783 with the United States becoming the first country to gain independence from a European power. The current constitution was adopted in 1788, with the first ten amendments, collectively named the Bill of Rights, being ratified in 1791 to guarantee many fundamental civil liberties; the United States embarked on a vigorous expansion across North America throughout the 19th century, acquiring new territories, displacing Native American tribes, admitting new states until it spanned the continent by 1848. During the second half of the 19th century, the Civil War led to the abolition of slavery.
By the end of the century, the United States had extended into the Pacific Ocean, its economy, driven in large part by the Industrial Revolution, began to soar. The Spanish–American War and World War I confirmed the country's status as a global military power; the United States emerged from World War II as a global superpower, the first country to develop nuclear weapons, the only country to use them in warfare, a permanent member of the United Nations Security Council. Sweeping civil rights legislation, notably the Civil Rights Act of 1964, the Voting Rights Act of 1965 and the Fair Housing Act of 1968, outlawed discrimination based on race or color. During the Cold War, the United States and the Soviet Union competed in the Space Race, culminating with the 1969 U. S. Moon landing; the end of the Cold War and the collapse of the Soviet Union in 1991 left the United States as the world's sole superpower. The United States is the world's oldest surviving federation, it is a representative democracy.
The United States is a founding member of the United Nations, World Bank, International Monetary Fund, Organization of American States, other international organizations. The United States is a developed country, with the world's largest economy by nominal GDP and second-largest economy by PPP, accounting for a quarter of global GDP; the U. S. economy is post-industrial, characterized by the dominance of services and knowledge-based activities, although the manufacturing sector remains the second-largest in the world. The United States is the world's largest importer and the second largest exporter of goods, by value. Although its population is only 4.3% of the world total, the U. S. holds 31% of the total wealth in the world, the largest share of global wealth concentrated in a single country. Despite wide income and wealth disparities, the United States continues to rank high in measures of socioeconomic performance, including average wage, human development, per capita GDP, worker productivity.
The United States is the foremost military power in the world, making up a third of global military spending, is a leading political and scientific force internationally. In 1507, the German cartographer Martin Waldseemüller produced a world map on which he named the lands of the Western Hemisphere America in honor of the Italian explorer and cartographer Amerigo Vespucci; the first documentary evidence of the phrase "United States of America" is from a letter dated January 2, 1776, written by Stephen Moylan, Esq. to George Washington's aide-de-camp and Muster-Master General of the Continental Army, Lt. Col. Joseph Reed. Moylan expressed his wish to go "with full and ample powers from the United States of America to Spain" to seek assistance in the revolutionary war effort; the first known publication of the phrase "United States of America" was in an anonymous essay in The Virginia Gazette newspaper in Williamsburg, Virginia, on April 6, 1776. The second draft of the Articles of Confederation, prepared by John Dickinson and completed by June 17, 1776, at the latest, declared "The name of this Confederation shall be the'United States of America'".
The final version of the Articles sent to the states for ratification in late 1777 contains the sentence "The Stile of this Confederacy shall be'The United States of America'". In June 1776, Thomas Jefferson wrote the phrase "UNITED STATES OF AMERICA" in all capitalized letters in the headline of his "original Rough draught" of the Declaration of Independence; this draft of the document did not surface unti
Lumber or timber is a type of wood, processed into beams and planks, a stage in the process of wood production. Lumber is used for structural purposes but has many other uses as well. There are two main types of lumber, it may be surfaced on one or more of its faces. Besides pulpwood, rough lumber is the raw material for furniture-making and other items requiring additional cutting and shaping, it is available in many species hardwoods. Finished lumber is supplied in standard sizes for the construction industry – softwood, from coniferous species, including pine and spruce, hemlock, but some hardwood, for high-grade flooring, it is more made from softwood than hardwoods, 80% of lumber comes from softwood. In the United States milled boards of wood are referred to as lumber. However, in Britain and other Commonwealth nations, the term timber is instead used to describe sawn wood products, like floor boards. In the United States and Canada timber describes standing or felled trees. In Canada, lumber describes cut and surfaced wood.
In the United Kingdom, the word lumber is used in relation to wood and has several other meanings, including unused or unwanted items. Referring to wood, Timber is universally used instead. Remanufactured lumber is the result of secondary or tertiary processing/cutting of milled lumber, it is lumber cut for industrial or wood-packaging use. Lumber is cut by ripsaw or resaw to create dimensions that are not processed by a primary sawmill. Resawing is the splitting of 1-inch through 12-inch hardwood or softwood lumber into two or more thinner pieces of full-length boards. For example, splitting a ten-foot 2×4 into two ten-foot 1×4s is considered resawing. Structural lumber may be produced from recycled plastic and new plastic stock, its introduction has been opposed by the forestry industry. Blending fiberglass in plastic lumber enhances its strength and fire resistance. Plastic fiberglass structural lumber can have a "class 1 flame spread rating of 25 or less, when tested in accordance with ASTM standard E 84," which means it burns slower than all treated wood lumber.
Logs are converted into timber by being hewn, or split. Sawing with a rip saw is the most common method, because sawing allows logs of lower quality, with irregular grain and large knots, to be used and is more economical. There are various types of sawing: Plain sawn – A log sawn through without adjusting the position of the log and the grain runs across the width of the boards. Quarter sawn and rift sawn – These terms have been confused in history but mean lumber sawn so the annual rings are reasonably perpendicular to the sides of the lumber. Boxed heart – The pith remains within the piece with some allowance for exposure. Heart center – the center core of a log. Free of heart center – A side-cut timber without any pith. Free of knots – No knots are present. Dimensional lumber is lumber, cut to standardized width and depth, specified in inches. Carpenters extensively use dimensional lumber in framing wooden buildings. Common sizes include 2×4, 2×6, 4×4; the length of a board is specified separately from the width and depth.
It is thus possible to find 2×4s that are four and twelve feet in length. In Canada and the United States, the standard lengths of lumber are 6, 8, 10, 12, 14, 16, 18, 20, 22 and 24 feet. For wall framing, "stud" or "precut" sizes are available, are used. For an eight-, nine-, or ten-foot ceiling height, studs are available in 92 5⁄8 inches, 104 5⁄8 inches, 116 5⁄8 inches; the term "stud" is used inconsistently to specify length. Under the prescription of the Method of Construction issued by the Southern Song government in the early 12th century, timbers were standardized to eight cross-sectional dimensions. Regardless of the actual dimensions of the timber, the ratio between width and height was maintained at 1:1.5. Units are in Song Dynasty inches. Timber smaller than the 8th class were called "unclassed"; the width of a timber is referred to as one "timber", the dimensions of other structural components were quoted in multiples of "timber". The dimensions of timbers in similar application show a gradual diminution from the Sui Dyansty to the modern era.
The length of a unit of dimensional lumber is limited by the height and girth of the tree it is milled from. In general the maximum length is 24 ft. Engineered wood products, manufactured by binding the strands, fibers, or veneers of wood, together with adhesives, to form composite materials, offer more flexibility and greater structural strength than typical wood building materials. Pre-cut studs save a framer much time, because they are pre-cut by the manufacturer for use in 8-, 9-
San Francisco Chronicle
The San Francisco Chronicle is a newspaper serving the San Francisco Bay Area of the U. S. state of California. It was founded in 1865 as The Daily Dramatic Chronicle by teenage brothers Charles de Young and Michael H. de Young. The paper is owned by the Hearst Corporation, which bought it from the de Young family in 2000, it is the only major daily paper covering the county of San Francisco. The paper benefited from the growth of San Francisco and was the largest circulation newspaper on the West Coast of the United States by 1880. Like many other newspapers, it has experienced a rapid fall in circulation in the early 21st century, was ranked 24th by circulation nationally for the six months to March 2010; the newspaper publishes two web sites: and sfchronicle.com, which reflects the articles that appear in the print paper, SFGate, which has a mixture of online news and web features. The Chronicle was founded by brothers Charles and M. H. de Young in 1865 as The Daily Dramatic Chronicle, inside of 10 years, it had the largest circulation of any newspaper west of the Mississippi River.
The paper's first office was in a building at the corner of Kearney Streets. The brothers commissioned a building from Burnham and Root at 690 Market Street at the corner of Third and Kearney Streets to be their new headquarters, in what became known as Newspaper Row; the new building, San Francisco's first skyscraper, was completed in 1889. It was damaged in the 1906 earthquake, but it was rebuilt under the direction of William Polk, Burnham's associate in San Francisco; that building, known as the "Old Chronicle Building" or the "DeYoung Building", still stands and was restored in 2007. It is the location of the Ritz-Carlton Club and Residences. In 1924, the Chronicle commissioned a new headquarters at 901 Mission Street on the corner of 5th Street in what is now the South of Market neighborhood of San Francisco, it was designed by Charles Peter Weeks and William Peyton Day in the Gothic Revival architecture style, but most of the Gothic Revival detailing was removed in 1968 when the building was re-clad with stucco.
This building remains the Chronicle's headquarters in 2017, although other concerns are located there as well. Between World War II and 1971, new editor Scott Newhall took a bold and somewhat provocative approach to news presentation. Newhall's Chronicle included investigative reporting by such journalists as Pierre Salinger, who played a prominent role in national politics, Paul Avery, the staffer who pursued the trail of the self-named "Zodiac Killer", who sent a cryptogram in three sections in letters to the Chronicle and two other papers during his murder spree in the late 1960s, it featured such colorful columnists as Pauline Phillips, who wrote under the name "Dear Abby," "Count Marco", Stanton Delaplane, Terence O'Flaherty, Lucius Beebe, Art Hoppe, Charles McCabe, Herb Caen. The newspaper grew in circulation to become the city's largest, overtaking the rival San Francisco Examiner; the demise of other San Francisco dailies through the late 1950s and early 1960s left the Examiner and the Chronicle to battle for circulation and readership superiority.
The competition between the Chronicle and Examiner took a financial toll on both papers until the summer of 1965, when a merger of sorts created a Joint Operating Agreement under which the Chronicle became the city's sole morning daily while the Examiner changed to afternoon publication. The newspapers were owned by the San Francisco Newspaper Agency, which managed sales and distribution for both newspapers and was charged with ensuring that one newspaper's circulation did not grow at the expense of the other. Revenue was split which led to a situation understood to benefit the Examiner, since the Chronicle, which had a circulation four times larger than its rival, subsidized the afternoon newspaper; the two newspapers produced a joint Sunday edition, with the Examiner publishing the news sections and the Sunday magazine and the Chronicle responsible for the tabloid entertainment section and the book review. From 1965 on the two papers shared a single classified-advertising operation; this arrangement stayed in place until the Hearst Corporation took full control of the Chronicle in 2000.
Beginning in the early 1990s, the Chronicle started to face competition beyond the borders of San Francisco. The newspaper had long enjoyed a wide reach as the de facto "newspaper of record" in Northern California, with distribution along the Central Coast, the Inland Empire and as far as Honolulu, Hawaii. There was little competition in the Bay Area suburbs and other areas that the newspaper served, but as Knight Ridder consolidated the San Jose Mercury News in 1975; the Chronicle launched five zoned sections to appear in the Friday edition of the paper. The sections covered San Francisco, four different suburban areas, they each featured enterprise pieces and local news specific to the community. The newspaper added 40 full-time staff positions to work in the suburban bureaus. Despite the push to focus on suburban coverage, the Chronicle was hamstrung by the Sunday edition, being produced by the San Francisco-centric "un-Chronicle" Examiner, had none of the focus on the suburban communities that the Chronicle was striving to cultivate.
The de Young family controlled the paper, via the Chronicle Publishing Company, until July 27, 2000, when it was sold to Hearst Communications, Inc. which owned the Examiner. Following the sale, the
Wood is a porous and fibrous structural tissue found in the stems and roots of trees and other woody plants. It is an organic material, a natural composite of cellulose fibers that are strong in tension and embedded in a matrix of lignin that resists compression. Wood is sometimes defined as only the secondary xylem in the stems of trees, or it is defined more broadly to include the same type of tissue elsewhere such as in the roots of trees or shrubs. In a living tree it performs a support function, enabling woody plants to grow large or to stand up by themselves, it conveys water and nutrients between the leaves, other growing tissues, the roots. Wood may refer to other plant materials with comparable properties, to material engineered from wood, or wood chips or fiber. Wood has been used for thousands of years for fuel, as a construction material, for making tools and weapons and paper. More it emerged as a feedstock for the production of purified cellulose and its derivatives, such as cellophane and cellulose acetate.
As of 2005, the growing stock of forests worldwide was about 434 billion cubic meters, 47% of, commercial. As an abundant, carbon-neutral renewable resource, woody materials have been of intense interest as a source of renewable energy. In 1991 3.5 billion cubic meters of wood were harvested. Dominant uses were for building construction. A 2011 discovery in the Canadian province of New Brunswick yielded the earliest known plants to have grown wood 395 to 400 million years ago. Wood can be dated by carbon dating and in some species by dendrochronology to determine when a wooden object was created. People have used wood for thousands of years for many purposes, including as a fuel or as a construction material for making houses, weapons, packaging and paper. Known constructions using wood date back ten thousand years. Buildings like the European Neolithic long house were made of wood. Recent use of wood has been enhanced by the addition of bronze into construction; the year-to-year variation in tree-ring widths and isotopic abundances gives clues to the prevailing climate at the time a tree was cut.
Wood, in the strict sense, is yielded by trees, which increase in diameter by the formation, between the existing wood and the inner bark, of new woody layers which envelop the entire stem, living branches, roots. This process is known as secondary growth; these cells go on to form thickened secondary cell walls, composed of cellulose and lignin. Where the differences between the four seasons are distinct, e.g. New Zealand, growth can occur in a discrete annual or seasonal pattern, leading to growth rings. If the distinctiveness between seasons is annual, these growth rings are referred to as annual rings. Where there is little seasonal difference growth rings are to be indistinct or absent. If the bark of the tree has been removed in a particular area, the rings will be deformed as the plant overgrows the scar. If there are differences within a growth ring the part of a growth ring nearest the center of the tree, formed early in the growing season when growth is rapid, is composed of wider elements.
It is lighter in color than that near the outer portion of the ring, is known as earlywood or springwood. The outer portion formed in the season is known as the latewood or summerwood. However, there are major differences, depending on the kind of wood; as a tree grows, lower branches die, their bases may become overgrown and enclosed by subsequent layers of trunk wood, forming a type of imperfection known as a knot. The dead branch may not be attached to the trunk wood except at its base, can drop out after the tree has been sawn into boards. Knots affect the technical properties of the wood reducing the local strength and increasing the tendency for splitting along the wood grain, but may be exploited for visual effect. In a longitudinally sawn plank, a knot will appear as a circular "solid" piece of wood around which the grain of the rest of the wood "flows". Within a knot, the direction of the wood is up to 90 degrees different from the grain direction of the regular wood. In the tree a knot is either the base of a dormant bud.
A knot is conical in shape with the inner tip at the point in stem diameter at which the plant's vascular cambium was located when the branch formed as a bud. In grading lumber and structural timber, knots are classified according to their form, size and the firmness with which they are held in place; this firmness is affected by, among other factors, the length of time for which the branch was dead while the attaching stem continued to grow. Knots materially affect cracking and warping, ease in working, cleavability of timber, they are defects which weaken timber and lower its value for structural purposes where strength is an important consideration. The weakening effect is much more serious when timber is subjected to forces perpendicular to the grain and/or tension than when under load along the grain and/or compression; the extent to which knots affect the strength of a beam depends upon their position, size and condition. A knot on the upper side is compressed. If there is a season check