Light Pollution
A very interesting high-resolution resource for light pollution maps. Here is an example of continental Europe:

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Posted: 2023-11-06
Category: Text
Reappearing borders
The Schengen agreement, abolishing internal border controls, is probably one of the most significant achievements for European cooperation in the past half-century. Yet, temporarily reintroduced border controls seem to appear for various reasons lately. Below is a link to the (continuously updated) list. It is a sad read for the future of European integration.
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Posted: 2023-10-27
Category: Text
The Barbican

This is an image post.
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Posted: 2023-09-27
Category: Photo
Submarine cable map
A very interesting map with submarine cables from all over the world.
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Posted: 2023-07-14
Category: Text
Railway exception handling
For trains to compete with air travel, on short- and (some) medium-haul flight destinations, it will take much more than 'competitive travel time'.

I believe that the key concern will be how operators handle disruptions. Over decades, airports have built a significant infrastructure around accommodation for waiting (and delayed) passengers. Most railway stations have not and are also often located close to city centers where new construction is difficult (and where existing accommodation is expensive).

This is not news. The EU regulation on 'rail passenger rights' appears to offer much weaker customer protection than the air travel equivalent. For example, the EU rail passenger rights regulation states that rail operators need to offer accommodation: '[...] where and when physically possible' (Article 20-2(b)) when certain criteria are met.

Interestingly, the 'air passenger rights' regulation makes no such mention about when accommodation cannot be expected.

How service exceptions are handled, will define what mode of transportation people choose. And, if rail travel is to be promoted, why give rail operators lower service requirements?
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Posted: 2023-07-02
Category: Text
Air Quality
I noticed something strange in the iOS weather app: The air quality index seems to be defined relative to the country from which one accesses the air quality map.

Below is an example (screenshots were taken minutes apart). The left panel shows air quality as reported on the 'Dutch scale' and the right panel shows the same on the 'German scale'.

It seems as if these countries (?) have vastly different ideas of what is 'good' for humans. Curiously, BreezoMeter seems to be the source of the data for both.

Edit (2023-06-25 15:05 UTC): I should highlight that the value 7 for Amsterdam is translated as 'insufficient' using the Dutch scale while the German scale rates the air quality at the same place and time as 'good'.
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Posted: 2023-06-25
Category: Text
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