Thursday, July 25, 2013

Elite Viking jewelry found on modest Denmark farm

The History Blog » Blog Archive » Elite Viking jewelry found on modest Denmark farm

An extensive archaeological survey of a farmstead on the Danish island of Zealand slated for residential development uncovered traces of a Late Iron Age/Viking Age settlement and several pieces of important metal jewelry from that era. Between April and December of 2007, experts from Roskilde Museum excavated a total of approximately 27,000 square meters (290,000 square feet) on the 15 hectare Vestervang farm. They found the remains of 18 longhouses and 21 pit houses of modest size — none were more than 65 feet long — which weren’t all constructed at the same time. This wasn’t a town but rather a single farm built up over time in six phases between the late seventh century and the early 11th.
The jewelry unearthed on the site of this farm is far more luxurious than you might expect to find at a modest farm size. There are gilded pieces, intricately carved pendants and brooches, probably imports like a trefoil brooch from 850-950 A.D. designed in a Carolingian style and a pre-Viking brooch with a gold accents in a waffle texture and Christian cross motif in red glass that reminds me of some of the Staffordshire Hoard pieces.
The star of the show is a copper alloy piece 2.9 inches in diameter with a central animal figure wearing a beaded chain around its neck. Three masked figures with moustaches are placed around the object, one on either side of the main character, one across from it. Four holes between the masked men suggest there was additional decoration, perhaps two more animal figures like the central one. Experts believe it may have been part of a necklace.
According to the archaeologist Ole Thirup Kastholm, author of a paper on the excavation published in the latest issue of the Danish Journal of Archaeology, this is a rare piece and would have been extremely high-end in Viking times.
He said that the animal image itself seems to be anthropomorphic, something not unusual in Viking age art. “Some of these anthropomorphic pictures, though, might be seen as representations of ‘shamanic’ actions, i.e. as mediators between the ‘real’ world and the ‘other’ world,” Kastholm wrote in an email to LiveScience. He can’t say for sure who would have worn it, but it “certainly (was) a person with connections to the elite milieu of the Viking age.”
The Christian cross also must have adorned a person of rank. Made between 500 and 750 A.D., it’s not the product of local artisans. It was in all likelihood manufactured in continental Europe and decades or centuries later made its way to Southern Scandinavia, either through trade networks or perhaps carried by a Christian visitor.
What would make this tidy but seemingly unremarkable farm a magnet for such expensive, rare jewelry? Kastholm thinks the key is the farm’s proximity to Lejre, a site just six miles away which according to Beowulf and the Saga of King Hrolf Kraki was the royal seat of the legendary first ruling Danish dynasty the Skjöldung or Scylding clan.
In the 1960s, there was vast residential development in the area of Vestervang, but maps that predate the development show two villages near the site with “Karleby” in their name, something that may signify that the area was given to retainers of Lejre’s ruler.
“The old Scandinavian term karl, corresponding with the old English ceorl, refers to a member of the king’s professional warrior escort, the hirð,” Kastholm writes in the journal article.
Together, the rich jewelry finds at Vestervang, the site’s proximity to Lejre and the presence of two nearby villages with the names “Karleby” reveal what life may have been like at Vestervang.
It “seems probable that the settlement of Vestervang was a farm controlled by a Lejre superior and given to generations of retainers, i.e. to a karl of the hirð,” Kastholm writes. “This would explain the extraordinary character of the stray finds contrasting with the somewhat ordinary traces of settlement.”

Wednesday, July 24, 2013

The Town that spent 25 Years Underwater

The Town that spent 25 Years Underwater

This is Villa Epecuen, an old tourist town south of Buenos Aires that spent a quarter of a century underwater. Established in the 1920s on the banks of a salt lake, the town was home to over 5,000 residents and a holiday destination to thousands more vacationers from the Argentinian capital.

In 1985, a dam burst and buried the town in 33 feet of salt water, rendering it a modern-day Atlantis. Initially, people waited on their roofs, hoping for the water to recede. It didn’t, and within two days, the place was a devastated ghost town.

In 2009, the waters began to recede and what emerged resembles an apocalyptic world.

Evenly-spaced dead trees still line what used to be streets, rusty bed frames poke out from concrete rubble and sign posts point to nowhere.

Amazingly, one resident remained in this desolate place. Pablo Novak was the only person not to leave his hometown when the water swallowed it up in 1985. He lives in a stone hut with a fridge and a basic cooker. I guess there’s no place like home…

Source: Imgur

Tuesday, July 23, 2013

Saint Michel d'Aiguilhe (St. Michael of the Needle) | Atlas Obscura

Saint Michel d'Aiguilhe (St. Michael of the Needle) | Atlas Obscura 

Saint Michel d'Aiguilhe (St. Michael of the Needle)

A chapel on a volcanic core, marking the end of a successful journey

In the winter of 951, Bishop Godescalc of the French village Le Puy-en-Velay returned from an overland journey to the shrine of St. James, located about 1000 miles away, across the Pyrenees, in Santiago de Compostela, Spain. To mark his successful return from this first pilgrimage he had the diminutive chapel built atop the towering volcanic core in the center of town.
The village of Le Puy-en-Velay is located in an valley surrounded by evidence of ancient volcanoes, two of which have left behind volcanic plugs. Le Puy-en-Velay had been a sacred destination in its own right before Godescalc's big adventure, but ever since it has marked the starting point of the Via Podiensis pilgrimage route, a tradition that lasts to this day with modern pilgrims arriving to have their walking sticks blessed in the Cathedral before setting out in Godescalc's footsteps.
Aiguilhe means "needle", and like many lofty Christian sacred spaces, the chapel atop it is dedicated to the Archangel Michael, likely because of his propensity to appear on mountain tops and other high places. The architecture of the chapel reflects the influence of Spain, with homages to the grand mosque of Cordoba in the stone work.
The volcanic core is 269 feet high, and the tiny pad at the top is just 187 feet diameter. It can be reached via 268 stone steps that wind up the side.
Across town on another volcanic core Notre-Dame de France watches over the town. The monumental statue dates to 1860, and was made by melting down 213 Russian cannons seized in the Crimean War under command of Napoleon III

Monday, July 22, 2013

Magnificent Lego Acropolis Is Made of 120,000 Bricks

Magnificent Lego Acropolis Is Made of 120,000 Bricks
7/05/13 1:43pm 7/05/13 1:43pmg 24,104L 19Edit
Over 300 hours of hard work went into creating this Lego Acropolis. starting tomorrow, builder Ryan McNaught—AKA TheBrickMan—will be displaying his creation at Sydney's Nicholson Museum. The classical build comes complete with a minifig Oedipus stabbing his eyes out, with blood spilling over the stage.
Magnificent Lego Acropolis Is Made of 120,000 Bricks
This build is a bit tongue-in-cheek, as it features a minifig Elton John performing for modern-day tourists, a Lego Gandalf and Sigmund Freud (no doubt realizing how much Oedipus Rex reflects his inner fears and desires). With this exhibit, the Nicholson Museum is certainly pushing the envelope as far as making the Classics accessible (and appealing) to younger generations:
The Nicholson Museum, in Sydney University's quadrangle, is Australia's largest museum of antiquities and fast developing a reputation as one of the most innovative museums of its type for its integration of the ancient and contemporary world. Last year, more than 90,000 visitors viewed the Lego Colosseum, an increase of 25,000 people on the previous 12 months. Next year, the museum is planning a Lego Pompeii.
According to Senior curator of the Nicholson Museum, Michael Turner:
If we can create an extraordinary experience, an enormous LEGO model in a museum of antiquities, then it's likely that they'll never, ever forget it.
Ryan McNaught is the only Lego-certified professional in Australia (you'll remember him as the builder of this insane Lego Helicopter, that was recently destroyed by some teenage morons). As a Classicist, I love this build (anachronisms aside), there are so many fun little details from the Temple of Athena Nike to the stealing of the Elgin marbles. And as a Lego fangirl, I especially love seeing McNaught get the continued recognition he deserves. LEGO ergo sum. [Sydney Morning Herald]
Magnificent Lego Acropolis Is Made of 120,000 Bricks
Magnificent Lego Acropolis Is Made of 120,000 BricksSExpand
Magnificent Lego Acropolis Is Made of 120,000 Bricks
Magnificent Lego Acropolis Is Made of 120,000 Bricks


Thursday, July 18, 2013

Friday, July 12, 2013

Weep at the beauty of Tolkien’s ‘Silmarillion’ Illuminated | Hobbit Movie News and Rumors |™

Weep at the beauty of Tolkien’s ‘Silmarillion’ Illuminated | Hobbit Movie News and Rumors |™

Weep at the beauty of Tolkien’s ‘Silmarillion’ Illuminated

July 12, 2013 at 4:17 pm by MrCere -
The Illuminated Silmarillion
The Illuminated Silmarillion
How beautiful can a J.R.R. Tolkien book be? There are some fantastic illustrated versions of “The Hobbit,” “The Lord of the Rings,” and “The Silmarillion,” and each is beautiful and can be an impressive part of any library. There have been some deluxe versions of LOTR printed over the years which are expensive and impressive. But Benjamin Harff has done something on a whole new level. Following the tradition of ancient forms of book making, often by monks or priests working before the printing press, Harff has used the old style to make a simply amazing version of Tolkien’s “The Silmarillion.”

He produced the book as part of his schooling and says, “…but the main problem was my strict limitation in time and money. Looking back I cannot understand how it worked! For my exam it would have been enough to do calligraphy for only one or two chapters. But I didn´t want to have a book with maybe twenty printed and 380 empty pages! That would not have been worthy for a Tolkien-work and I had better done a short story or so. But I thought: „This is your exam and maybe the last time that you can do what you want as an illustrator!“ So I did it, and couldn´t have done it with that fire, wouldn´t it have been a Tolkien-work. And although this was extremely hard, the fire did not cease.”
The Tolkien Library has an interview with excellent images. You can read the whole story right here

These RPG Campaigns Will Keep You Busy All Summer Long via Io 9

These RPG Campaigns Will Keep You Busy All Summer Long

These RPG Campaigns Will Keep You Busy All Summer LongEdit

The best way to spend summer vacation is playing tabletop RPGs with your friends, obviously. Whether you’re into swords and wizards or prefer technomancers and secret agents, here are eight awesome RPG campaigns to occupy those hazy afternoons and summer nights.
The eight role-playing systems here run the gamut, from old-school simulationist dice-fests to more free-form story games. For each one I’ve searched for an adventure suite or campaign that will take about four to six weeks to complete, perfect for a tabletop summer fling.
These RPG Campaigns Will Keep You Busy All Summer Long
The life cycle of Shadowrun’s 4th Edition is winding down, but there’s still plenty of fun to be had before the 5th edition is released. With the admittedly dense rules framework there’s enormous flexibility for creative solutions to the problems one tends to encounter in a cyberpunk world in which Earth’s ancient magic has awakened. Hack it, shoot it, blow it up, steal it, enspell it, then upload the video and become cyberfamous. Or use stealth and keep a lower profile. Your call.
Shadowrun Missions is a set of adventures that can be run in a single evening, and each one costs $4. They’re intended to be run in a single session at a game convention, but they work perfectly well for your weekly game night.

These RPG Campaigns Will Keep You Busy All Summer Long
Call of Cthulhu
The classic Chaosium RPG, where your investigators are quite likely to go insane while trying to stop the rising tide of cosmic horror. The Call of Cthulhu system is not overly complex, so you can roll up a few characters and start investigating cultists and getting eaten my ghouls on short notice. But for a truly epic summer, check out the legendary Masks of Nyarlathotep campaign, a series of adventures that takes investigators around the world as they uncover an increasingly bizarre plot of terrifying proportions. It’s often touted as one of the greatest campaigns ever written. It might be a little long to fit into the summer months, but if you finish it up just as that first chill of autumn touches the wind and the nights start growing longer, maybe that’s ok.

These RPG Campaigns Will Keep You Busy All Summer Long
Pathfinder is my sword & sorcery RPG of choice these days. The rules can be a bit daunting for new players, but if you have experience with 3rd Edition D&D, Pathfinder is very similar (to the point of being mostly compatible). For a concise summer campaign, you should check out Pathfinder Society, a series of adventures designed to be run at cons and game stores, with the results tying in to a broader story. You can purchase and play them with your own group, of course ($4 each) — each one should fit into a single gaming session. Season five doesn’t start until mid-August, but season four offers a bunch of scenarios for any range of character levels you prefer.
If you want a more open-ended campaign, Razor Coast is a sandbox campaign setting centered on a group of dangerous islands. There’s a broad story you can follow, but it offers a ton of room for the gamemaster and players to explore and get involved in all the treasure hunting, swashbuckling excitement of the region.

These RPG Campaigns Will Keep You Busy All Summer Long
Apocalypse World
This indie RPG has turned a lot of heads. The post-apocalyptic setting is a playground for the players and gamemaster to create weird stories and relationships. Instead of following a predetermined plot, the idea behind Apocalypse World is to ask questions, then play the game and find out the answers. The GM is as along for the ride as the players.
Apocalypse World has become so popular that a number of system hacks exporting it to different genres and settings exist. One of the most interesting is called Monsterhearts, which takes AW’s core ideas about open-ended role-playing and wraps them around the world of supernatural monsters and romance. Vampire Diaries, Buffy the Vampire Slayer and Twilight are among the direct inspirations, which makes for fertile ground for growing melodramatic tales of horror, loss, lust and, again, horror.

These RPG Campaigns Will Keep You Busy All Summer Long
Song of Ice & Fire
Did you know that Green Ronin publishes the official Song of Ice & Fire RPG? And that it features incredibly beautiful cover art? We’ve got a long wait before the next season of Game of Thrones, which makes summer the perfect time to start your own elaborate and devious plots against the scions of the other houses. The short adventure “Wedding Knight” offers up plenty of opportunities for intrigue, or perhaps your own Red Wedding. It will only take a night or two, so after that you might move on to the meatier “Peril at King’s Landing.”

These RPG Campaigns Will Keep You Busy All Summer Long
D&D Next
There’s a new edition of Dungeons & Dragons in development, but you don’t have to wait another year to try it out. The system is in an open beta test, so you can download the rules for free and run some adventures yourself. In its current iteration, D&D Next harkens back to the classic editions of the past while filing away some rough edges and incorporating some important advances in RPG design.
D&D offers an official set of summer adventures, too, through their in-store Encounters program. These events are supposed to be run at a sanctione game store, so you can’t just buy the adventures to run at home, but it’s pretty easy to find a store nearby already running it. While Encounters uses Fourth Edition rules, Wizards of the Coast offers a conversion guide so they can be run using D&D Next.

These RPG Campaigns Will Keep You Busy All Summer Long
Gamma World
A new version of the totally bonkers post-apocalyptic Gamma World RPG came out a few years ago. It didn’t sell well, so only two expansions were made, but I think you should dispense with official adventures entirely. Gamma World is made to be twisted and weird and hilarious. Make some semi-random characters, then head out into the radioactive wastes and see you find. Take turns GMing each week. See who can create the most bizarre encounters. Creating characters is fast and fun, so maybe end each session with a total party kill, the weirder the better.

These RPG Campaigns Will Keep You Busy All Summer Long
Night’s Black Agents
This RPG about secret agents battling shadowy vampire conspiracies puts a heavy emphasis on investigation, though the white knuckle action can be very intense too. There’s one official adventure for Night’s Black Agents, The Zalozhniy Quartet. It will take you about a month to complete, carrying the players from some gun smugglers who are worse than they seem to a safety deposit box in a Swiss bank to the looming horror of a vampire superweapon.
Thanks to Manda Collis of Charisma Bonus for helping with this list!

Tuesday, July 9, 2013

How George R.R. Martin Envisioned the Iron Thone [Pic] | Geeks are Sexy Technology News

How George R.R. Martin Envisioned the Iron Thone [Pic] | Geeks are Sexy Technology News

From George R.R. Martin:
This Iron Throne is massive. Ugly. Assymetric. It’s a throne made by blacksmiths hammering together half-melted, broken, twisted swords, wrenched from the hands of dead men or yielded up by defeated foes… a symbol of conquest… it has the steps I describe, and the height. From on top, the king dominates the throne room. And there are thousands of swords in it, not just a few. This Iron Throne is scary. And not at all a comfortable seat, just as Aegon intended.
[Source: George R.R. Martin | Via Buzzfeed | Painting by artist Marc Simonetti


Tower of London's Line of Kings continues 400-year-old narrative

Tower of London's Line of Kings continues 400-year-old narrative | Culture |

Tower of London's Line of Kings continues 400-year-old narrative

One of Tower's oldest displays, a mix of historic treasures and fakes praised by a Dutch traveller in 1652, has been revamped
The Line of Kings display at the Tower of London in 1878
The Line of Kings at the Tower of London in 1878: 'One of the largest collections of 17th-century wooden sculptures on display anywhere,' says curator Thom Richardson
William the Conqueror has been deposed, along with Edward III and Henry V, and Elizabeth I has kept her head but lost her horse, but the survivors of one of the oldest tourist attractions in the world, suited and booted in shining armour, their horses pawing the ground and tossing their wooden manes, are almost ready to ride out again.
On Wednesday visitors to the White Tower, the oldest part of the Tower of London, will see the latest version of a display almost 400 years old, extolled in countless guide books, maps, journals and letters. In 1652 a Dutch diplomat, Lodewijck Huygens, wrote that he had been to see "wooden horses with armed men on them" – and the tall tales were also already in place, since he was shown not only the genuine armour of Henry VIII, but that of John of Gaunt, "a renowned warrior of a few hundred years ago".
"It was the one sight any visitor to London worth his salt had to see," said Thom Richardson, curator of armour at the Royal Armouries, which runs the White Tower within the Historic Royal Palaces Tower of London site.
Tower of London - the line of kings One of the exhibits in the Tower of London's new Line of Kings exhibition. Photograph: Christian Sinibaldi for the Guardian Even earlier wooden horses are known to have existed in Henry VIII's armoury at Greenwich palace, but to Richardson's disappointment, tests haven't identified any survivors, "nothing, not a sausage, not so much as a tin of horse meat".
For centuries the line was a parade of genuine historic treasures, inspired mashups confected by generations of tower staff, and outright fakes, towering majestic figures claimed as all the kings of England since William in 1066, wearing their real armour, carrying their own swords, on wooden horses wearing their own beautifully engraved and decorated armour. In fact there were a few notable absentees, including Richard III.
At one date miniature suits of armour represented the Little Princes, the nephews many believed Richard murdered – and whose bones were firmly believed to be those found under a staircase only a few metres from where the visitors stood. It was typical of the mixture of genuine and confected history in the line: one of the dazzling miniature suits really was made almost 150 years later for another little prince who changed the course of English history: Henry, whose early death meant his sickly little brother became Charles I.
It's back in the line, near Charles's own gilded armour, in which he would have shone like a medieval saint, probably worn at the Battle of Naseby, which was on display all through the republican Commonwealth era after the execution of Charles.
Grinling Gibbons, regarded as one of the most brilliant woodcarvers ever, was paid £40 in 1685 for a horse and a carving of "the late king" a few months after the death of Charles II. A figure of Elizabeth I was commissioned, but only her head survives, though a former Tower historian, Geoffrey Parnell, believes her horse and her little page may lie in a pit under a car park a stone's throw from the Ritz, buried for protection in the first world war.
When the condition of the horses was checked – "by shining a light up their bottoms," project leader Karen Whitting explained – many proved perilously fragile, far too weak to carry a king. Some are still in armour, but most are now displayed as magnificent sculptures.
"This now represents one of the largest collections of 17th-century wooden sculptures on display anywhere", Richardson said. Kings including Henry VIII and Charles II are, shockingly, on foot. Generations of Royal Armouries staff were used to moving the horses by picking up a leg at each corner and manhandling them up stone spiral staircases, or dragging them by pulleys and hoists up the outside of the tower. This time specialist firms were brought in, and they are supported by discreet acrylic props.
Tower of London's new Line of Kings exhibition One of the exhibits in the Tower of London's new Line of Kings exhibition. Photograph: Christian Sinibaldi for the Guardian William the Conqueror was eventually booted out of the line in the 1820s, along with Edward III, John of Gaunt and Henry V, by one of the earliest and most distinguished armour historians, Samuel Meyrick, who regarded the display as a travesty: William, the victor of 1066, was in armour made in Greenwich more than 500 years after his death, and farsightedly brandishing a 17th-century musket.
"Meyrick undoubtedly put it on a much more sound and scholarly footing," Richardson said, "but the trouble was when he had finished there was practically nothing left to represent the middle ages."
His predecessors embarked on a shopping spree, filling the gaps with genuine antiques, others made to look centuries older, and some magnificent fakes. Every object in the new display has been part of the historic line at some point, including a little wooden figure in armour who may be part of an ancient automaton clock.
The tradition of tall tales spun by the yeoman warder, or beefeater, guides is as old as the Line of Kings itself.
Richardson has kept a favourite plain black iron breastplate, punctured with several small holes and one enormous one. "It was bought for testing at a time when claimed bullet-proof armour was being made – which this patently was not." In the 18th century one ancient warder had a cherished anecdote of how the soldier wearing it had had most of his guts blown away by a cannon ball that passed right through him, but was patched up and did perfectly well. However, a royal visitor, Prince Frederick, promptly capped this with an outrageous yarn about a soldier whose head was split open so the two halves flopped on his shoulders, until his quick-witted friends bound it up with a handkerchief, the wounded man drank a pot of ale and recovered completely. The mortified warder, aware he was being cruelly mocked, never spoke to a visitor again.
The Line of Kings, Tower of London, re-opens on Wednesday, 10 July.

• This article was amended on 7 July 2013. A reference to miniature suits being made 300 years after the Little Princes was changed to "almost 150 years"

Monday, July 8, 2013

UPDATE W/ Official Statement: Dragon*Con Removes Kramer from Shareholders |

UPDATE W/ Official Statement: Dragon*Con Removes Kramer from Shareholders |

Medieval Suits Of Armor Made For Mice And Cats -

Medieval Suits Of Armor Made For Mice And Cats -
Interesting pictures of armor.

Boyce Thompson Institute for Plant Research Real place for a Modern horror setting

Boyce Thompson Institute for Plant Research

An abandoned horticulture institute gloomily presides over rows of derelict and vine-wrought greenhouses

The Boyce Thompson Institute vacated its original Yonkers location decades ago, but the greenhouses that it left behind remain lush with plant life, now growing from the outside in.
Rising from a sea of suburban commercial sprawl, the empty Boyce Thompson Institute looms menacingly. Years of neglect have allowed it to be thoroughly vandalized and marauded, leaving the vacant shell of a building that was once at the forefront of plant research. Rows of empty greenhouses have been taken back by nature, forested in moss and overgrown with vines. Leafy foliage creeps its way in through the broken glass, lending a strange beauty to the deteriorating structures and their slow decay.
William Boyce Thompson originally made his fortune as a copper magnate in the early 1900's, purchasing 22 acres of land in northwest Yonkers with the intent of building a summer home that would overlook the Hudson river. Always a lover of plants and gardens, Thompson was actively involved in the process of planning and planting the landscapes surrounding his new manor.  On a 1917 trip to Russia, Thompson found himself deeply moved by the poverty he observed.  He returned home convinced of the need to find a sustainable food supply for the world's ever-growing population.  Inspired by the idea that agriculture and social justice were intricately linked, Thompson determined to build a horticulture institute on his remaining land in Yonkers.  The Boyce Thompson Institute was established in 1920 to research plant growth, germination, potentialities and disease, and Thompson remained passionate about the study of horticulture for the remainder of his life.
In 1978, facing a steep rise in Yonkers' city taxes and with heavy urban air pollution becoming increasingly problematic for their research, the Boyce Thompson Institute relocated their facilities to the Cornell University campus.  The building left behind in Yonkers was actively leased out for use until the mid-1990's,  but the greenhouses have been in disuse and left to their own accord ever since the 1970's.
The property currently belongs to the city of Yonkers which is actively seeking out proposals for new development, but for the time being the Boyce Thompson Institute stands vacant and seemingly forgotten.  Vandals, vagrants and nature continue to take their toll on the abandoned building and Thompson's greenhouses are left to the plants.

Sunday, July 7, 2013

Alaskan Tribe Starts Video Game Studio

Alaskan Tribe Starts Video Game Studio

They could have put their money into more traditional businesses, like a funeral home or a dry cleaner or real estate development. Instead, the Cook Inlet Tribal Council of Alaska chose to fund a video games company. They say it's the first one in the United States owned by indigenous people.
Upper One Games announced its founding this week at the Games For Change Festival in New York. USA Today reports that it will partner with E-Media, a New York-based company founded by a former Activision executive, to release two titles next year. (A screenshot of one is above). The tribe's president said they looked to video games, instead of other investments, because they wanted to connect their efforts to their youth.
One title, which is planned for a commercial release, will be based on traditional Alaska stories, though subsequent efforts will explore other cultures as well. As for the studio's name, Upper One is a play on Lower 48, the term by which Alaskans commonly refer to the contiguous United States.

Alaskan Tribe Starts Video Game Studio