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They are very interested in the impact of the environment on human health, especially the effects of environmental hazards such as radiation , lead poisoning, or water pollution. Geographic Techniques Specialists in geographic techniques study the ways in which geographic processes can be analyzed and represented using different methods and technologies.

Mapmaking, or cartography , is perhaps the most basic of these.

Cartography has been instrumental to geography throughout the ages. As early as BCE, Polynesian navigators in the Pacific Ocean used complex maps made of tiny sticks and shells that represented islands and ocean currents they would encounter on their voyages. Today, satellites placed into orbit by the U.

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Department of Defense communicate with receivers on the ground called global positioning system GPS units to instantly identify exact locations on Earth. Today, almost the entire surface of Earth has been mapped with remarkable accuracy, and much of this information is available instantly on the internet. Technological developments during the past years have given rise to a number of other specialties for scientists studying geographic techniques.

The airplane made it possible to photograph land from above. Now, there are many satellites and other above-Earth vehicles that help geographers figure out what the surface of the planet looks like and how it is changing. Geographers looking at what above-Earth cameras and sensors reveal are specialists in remote sensing.

Pictures taken from space can be used to make maps, monitor ice melt, assess flood damage, track oil spills, predict weather, or perform endless other functions. For example, by comparing satellite photos taken from to , scientists from the U. Every year from to , about 45 feet per year of coast, mostly icy permafrost , vanished into the sea. Computerized systems that allow for precise calculations of how things are distributed and relate to one another have made the study of geographic information systems GIS an increasingly important specialty within geography.

Geographic information systems are powerful databases that collect all types of information maps, reports, statistics , satellite images, surveys, demographic data, and more and link each piece of data to a geographic reference point, such as geographic coordinates. This data, called geospatial information, can be stored, analyzed, modeled, and manipulated in ways not possible before GIS computer technology existed. Geographic information scientists study patterns in nature as well as human development. They might study natural hazards, such as a fire that struck Los Angeles, California, in A map posted on the internet showed the real-time spread of the fire, along with information to help people make decisions about how to evacuate quickly.

GIS can also illustrate human struggles from a geographic perspective, such as the interactive online map published by the New York Times in May that showed building foreclosure rates in various regions around the New York City area. The enormous possibilities for producing computerized maps and diagrams that can help us understand environmental and social problems have made geographic visualization an increasingly important specialty within geography.

This geospatial information is in high demand by just about every institution, from government agencies monitoring water quality to entrepreneurs deciding where to locate new businesses. Regional Geography Regional geographers take a somewhat different approach to specialization, directing their attention to the general geographic characteristics of a region.

A regional geographer might specialize in African studies, observing and documenting the people, nations, rivers, mountains, deserts, weather, trade, and other attributes of the continent. There are different ways you can define a region. You can look at climate zones, cultural regions, or political regions. Often regional geographers have a physical or human geography specialty as well as a regional specialty. Regional geographers may also study smaller regions, such as urban areas. A regional geographer may be interested in the way a city like Shanghai, China, is growing.

They would study transportation, migration , housing, and language use, as well as the human impact on elements of the natural environment, such as the Huangpu River. Whether geography is thought of as a discipline or as a basic feature of our world, developing an understanding of the subject is important. Some grasp of geography is essential as people seek to make sense of the world and understand their place in it.

Thinking geographically helps people to be aware of the connections among and between places and to see how important events are shaped by where they take place.


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Photograph by Poras Chaudhary , MyShot. Gazetteer A gazetteer is a geographic dictionary. Gazetteers, which have existed for thousands of years, usually contain some sort of map and a set of information.

Some gazetteers may contain a list of capital cities or areas where a specific resource is found. Other gazetteers may contain information about the local population, such as languages spoken, money used, or religious beliefs. He was scheduled to fly back to Long Beach. Old Maps People have been making maps for thousands of years. One of the oldest known maps was found near the city of Kirkuk, Iraq. Most geographers say it dates from BCE.

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It is a palm-sized block of clay depicting an area with two hills and a stream. Some geographers think the stream is a canal made by people for irrigation. Geographers have identified one of the towns on the map. However, they are not sure exactly what the hand-held map represents.

Ancient maps could also be quite large. It is a map of a busy city, complete with crowded housing and even an erupting volcano. However, some scientists believe this "map" is decorative and not an accurate representation of what was there.

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The Earth is the only place in the known universe that supports life. Satellites can be natural, like moons, or made by people. United States Geological Survey primary source for science about the Earth, its natural and living resources, natural hazards, and the environment. The audio, illustrations, photos, and videos are credited beneath the media asset, except for promotional images, which generally link to another page that contains the media credit. The Rights Holder for media is the person or group credited.

Sarah Wilson, National Geographic Society. Caryl-Sue, National Geographic Society.

From landscape architecture to conservation agriculture - Thomas Woltz - TEDxCharlottesville

Dunn, Margery G. For information on user permissions, please read our Terms of Service. If you have questions about licensing content on this page, please contact ngimagecollection natgeo. If you have questions about how to cite anything on our website in your project or classroom presentation, please visit our FAQ page. If a media asset is downloadable, a download button appears in the corner of the media viewer.

If no button appears, you cannot download or save the media. Text on this page is printable and can be used according to our Terms of Service. Any interactives on this page can only be played while you are visiting our website. You cannot download interactives. Landforms are natural and distinctive features. In this paper we have addressed in what sense Twitter use by and about LabourStart — an initiative working to revitalise trade unionism with the help of Internet technologies — has the potential to establish transnational ties between actors within the LabourStart network. Moreover, it also shows that more people are tweeting about LabourStart in countries of the English-speaking global North, more precisely in the countries where LabourStart is tweeting about both global and local issues.

These observations suggest that successful labour mobilisation on social media depends on communication strategies through which the everyday grievances and needs experienced by workers both locally and globally become interconnected, thus creating translocal or transnational coalitions.