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National Day Parade 2011 国庆庆典2011 건국 기념일 퍼레이드 2011

A glimpse of Singapore’s National Day Parade 2011 in pictures and captions.

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This year’s National Day Parade (NDP) logo depicts the passion and dynamism of the NDP 2011 theme “Majulah! The Singapore Spirit”, which calls on all Singaporeans to move forward together to overcome challenges and build a better Singapore.

The five figures symbolise brightly burning flames whose soaring motion reflects Singaporeans’ constant drive for higher levels of success as a nation. The two central figures form the shape of a heart which represents our love for Singapore and the compassion in our society as we celebrate 46 years of independence.  The five stars stand for our nation’s ideals of democracy, justice, equality, peace and progress.

The shades of red reflect Singaporeans from all walks of life.  The overall vivid red colour signifies our unity, determination and can-do spirit that bond us in times of success and adversity.

Courtesy of NDP 2011 Official Site.

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First up, the pre-parade segment.

Close-up of  NDP Red Lion (Parachuter)

Courtesy of http://www.flickr.com/photos/peng-hui/5983015707/

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Act 1: Dynamic Defence Display

Chinook flying across Marina Bay

Courtesy of http://www.flickr.com/photos/9514792@N06/5992314745/

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Chinook hovering above water in front of Merlion

Courtesy of http://www.flickr.com/photos/junefoo/5994264370/

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Act 1: Parade & Ceremony

21 Gun Salute from Floating Platform

The canon balls were actually being fired from canons placed on platforms floating on water.

Courtesy of http://www.flickr.com/photos/robinlow/5973669806/in/photostream/

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Act 2: Birth

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Act 3: Growing Up

The Dugong, a specie native to the Southeast Asia region, was featured in Act 3.

Courtesy of http://www.ndp.org.sg/#/performance?id=22&sub=7

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Unfortunately, the official NDP site did not upload videos on Acts 4 & 5.

It’s okay though since the pyrotechnic and firework displays stole the show for the last 2 acts.

Firework display from the Marina Bay Boulevard Waterfront

Courtesy of http://www.flickr.com/photos/cheishichiyo/5921093566/

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Firework Display from Marina Bay Sands Skypark

Courtesy of http://www.flickr.com/photos/9514792@N06/6026533810/

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Firework Display from Fullerton Hotel

Courtesy of http://www.flickr.com/photos/adforce1/5988642458/

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Close-up of Firework Display

Courtesy of http://www.flickr.com/photos/63278190@N05/6026313896/

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Bento 弁当 便当 벤토

faux strawberries bento

Courtesy of Bentozen

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Bento (弁当 bentō?)[1] is a single-portion takeout or home-packed meal common in Japanese cuisine. A traditional bento consists of rice, fish or meat, and one or more pickled or cooked vegetables, usually in a box-shaped container. Containers range from disposable mass produced to hand crafted lacquerware. Although bento are readily available in many places throughout Japan, including convenience stores, bento shops (弁当屋 bentō-ya?), train stations, and department stores, it is still common for Japanese homemakers to spend time and energy for their spouse, child, or themselves producing a carefully prepared lunch box.

Bento can be very elaborately arranged in a style called kyaraben or “character bento”. Kyaraben is typically decorated to look like popular Japanese cartoon (anime) characters, characters from comic books (manga), or video game characters. Another popular bento style is “oekakiben” or “picture bento”, which is decorated to look like people, animals, buildings and monuments, or items such as flowers and plants. Contests are often held where bento arrangers compete for the most aesthetically pleasing arrangements.

Courtesy of Wikipedia

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Do you know that the IBM Thinkpad design was actually inspired by shoukadou bentou, the traditional, black-lacquered, Japanese lunch box?

IBM Thinkpad

Courtesy of Wikipedia

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Sapper (the designer of IBM ThinkPad) felt that the design should be clean, plain and elegant. His wooden prototype was based on the shoukadou bentou, the traditional, black-lacquered, Japanese lunch box. It was small and compact. Desk space is scarce in Japan, and, since security is an issue with notebooks, a computer the size of a bentou box could be locked in a filing cabinet.

Read up more from EDN.

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Shōkadō bentō

Courtesy of Wikipedia.

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Frogs Bento

Courtesy of Bentozen

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Kitty Sausage Bento

Courtesy of Bentozen

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Egg Flowers Bento

Courtesy of Bentozen

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Robot Love Bento

Courtesy of Bentozen

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Kimbap Bee Bento

Courtesy of Bentozen

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Monkey Soboro Bento

Courtesy of Bentozen

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Check out more Bento designs at Bentozen.

bento zen was created by a manhattan lawyer who works in a chaotic and often stressful environment.  by taking the time to prepare healthy, colorful, and artistic lunch boxes, she guarantees herself at least one moment of harmony during her busy work day.

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Korean Language 한국어 – Easy Korean Series 26 to 30

All Rights Reserved for The Korea Times.

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Hagia Sophia 圣索非亚大教堂 아야 소피아

Interior view of Hagia Sophia

Courtesy of http://www.hagia-sophia.org/

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The Church of the Holy Wisdom, known as Hagia Sophia (Άγια Σοφία) in Greek, Sancta Sophia in Latin, and Ayasofya or Aya Sofya in Turkish, is a former Byzantine church and former Ottoman mosque in Istanbul. Now a museum, Hagia Sophia is universally acknowledged as one of the great buildings of the world.

Site Information
Names: Hagia Sophia; Aya Sofya; Ayasofya; St. Sophia; Church of Holy Wisdom
Location: Istanbul, Turkey
Faiths: Original/Primary: Christianity
Current/Secondary: Islam
Denomination: Greek Orthodox
Dedication: Holy Wisdom
Categories: Cathedrals; Mosques; World Heritage Sites
Architecture: Byzantine
Date: 532-37
Patron(s): Justinian
Architect: Isidore of Miletus; Anthemius of Tralles
Size: Width: 230 ft (70 m)
Height: 246 ft (75 m)
Dome diameter: 102 ft (31 m)
Features: Byzantine Mosaics
Status: museum
Photo gallery: Hagia Sophia Photo Gallery
Visitor Information
Address: Aya Sofya Sq., Sultanahmet, Istanbul, Turkey
Coordinates: 41.008548° N, 28.979938° E   (view on Google Maps)
Lodging: View hotels near this location
Phone: 0212/522-1750
Public transport: Tram: Sultanahmet
Opening hours: Tue-Sun 9am-4:30pm
Cost: 10YTL ($8.70) to grounds and main floor; another 10YTL for admission to gallery

Adapted from http://www.sacred-destinations.com/turkey/istanbul-hagia-sophia

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Exterior view of the Hagia Sophia. Photo David Bjorgen.

Lithograph of the Hagia Sophia in 1852, by the Fossati brothers.

The müezzin mahfili, used by readers of the Koran during services. Photo © Andrys Basten.

Christian and Muslim religious art. Photo © Helen Betts.

All images featured above courtesy of http://www.sacred-destinations.com/turkey/istanbul-hagia-sophia

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The church of Hagia Sophia (literally “Holy Wisdom”) in Constantinople, now Istanbul, was first dedicated in 360 by Emperor Constantius, son of the city’s founder, Emperor Constantine. Hagia Sophia served as the cathedra, or bishop’s seat, of the city. Originally called Megale Ekklesia (Great Church), the name Hagia Sophia came into use around 430. The first church structure was destroyed during riots in 404; the second church, built and dedicated in 415 by Emperor Theodosius II, burned down during the Nika revolt of 532, which caused vast destruction and death throughout the city.

Immediately after the riots, Emperor Justinian I(r. 527–65) ordered the church rebuilt. The new building was inaugurated on December 27, 537. Architects Anthemios of Tralles and Isidoros of Miletos most likely were influenced by the mathematical theories of Archimedes (ca. 287–212 B.

The vast, airy naos, or central basilica, with its technically complex system of vaults and semi-domes, culminates in a high central dome with a diameter of over 101 feet (31 meters) and a height of 160 feet (48.5 meters). This central dome was often interpreted by contemporary commentators as the dome of heaven itself. Its weight is carried by four great arches, which rest on a series of tympana and semi-domes, which in turn rest on smaller semi-domes and arcades. This complicated structural system was prone to problems: the first dome collapsed in 558, to be rebuilt in 562 to a greater height. Earthquakes and earth subsidence have also taken their toll on the building over the centuries, although the surviving main structure is essentially that which was first built between 532 and 537.

The interior of Hagia Sophia was paneled with costly colored marbles and ornamental stone inlays. Decorative marble columns were taken from ancient buildings and reused to support the interior arcades. Initially, the upper part of the building was minimally decorated in gold with a huge cross in a medallion at the summit of the dome. After the period of Iconoclasm(726–843), new figural mosaics were added, some of which have survived to the present day.

After Mehmed II’s conquest of the city in 1453, Hagia Sophia was converted to a mosque (Ayasofya Camii), which it remained until the fall of the Ottoman empire in the early twentieth century. A view of Hagia Sophia during the conquest is conveyed in a woodcut by Pieter Coecke van Aelst depicting the procession of Süleyman the Magnificent through the Hippodrome (28.85.7a). During this period, minarets were built around the perimeter of the building complex, Christian mosaic iconswere covered with whitewash, and exterior buttresses were added for structural support. In 1934, the Turkish government secularized the building, converting it into a museum, and the original mosaics were restored.

Source: Hagia Sophia, 532–37 | Thematic Essay | Heilbrunn Timeline of Art History | The Metropolitan Museum of Art

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Interactive Floor Plan of Hagia Sophia

Click on the respective regions to link to real-life photos taken there!
Courtesy of http://www.sacred-destinations.com/turkey/istanbul-hagia-sophia-floor-plan
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If photos aren’t good enough for you to explore Hagia Sophia online, here’s a 360 degree interactive virtual tour:

http://www.360tr.com/34_istanbul/ayasofya/english/
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