History of Architecture

The word “Architecture” is derived from the Latin “atchitectura” transformed from the Greek “arkhitekton” with literal meaning “chief builder”. By definition ‘Architecture’ is the art of designing buildings and other geometrical shapes in a scientific matter.

Exploring origins:

The art of architecture initially originated as a product of dynamics between needs and means. With the development of aggrandizement and vivacity in human cultures, art and knowledge began to be organized initially through oral and later written procedures. Resultantly, architecture progressively transformed into an art.


Construction during Medieval times

The Medieval construction began in the 7th century, evolving from a homogeneity of architectural forms of ancient Middle East and of Byzantium vis-à-vis developing features to cater for the local and religious needs of the society. Instance can be had all over the Middle East, North Africa and Spain and were casting a considerable stylist impact over European architecture during the medieval times.

Architecture during Renaissance

During Renaissance period, emphasis was being imparted on human as an individual and it had shifted its course from the religion, and this way a new chapter of development and progress opened. Constructions were related to certain architects, Brunelieschi, Alberti, Michelangelo, Palladio, as the era of the “humanism” had taken effect.

Still there was no line of distinction between an artist and an architect or between any two related professions. The titles were mostly according to religious preferences. By this time, it was yet practicable for any artist to form a connection for the scope of dimensional measurements involved was within the range of generalists.

Early phases of Modernism and Industrial Age

Increasing fed-ups with general routine at the onset of the 20th c. gave a fillip to different new directions and shades of thought that were precursory to some modern arrangements in Architecture. Significant once included Dentscher Werkbund, developed in 1907 to generate best quality machine made products. The emergence of the design industry as a profession is believed to have taken place during this time.

Current Trends in Architecture

A few minds of the profession of architectural designs were able to respond to Modernism and then Postmodernism by hinting at the core where the burning point of the problem lied. They realized that architecture had been a subjective philosophy or aesthetic drive sought by professionals; it should instead consider day-to-day requirements of individuals and employ technology and artifice to create a livable atmosphere.

History of Printing

The history of Printing started, and as such assumed international exposure, to pursue efficient and economic means of printing multiple copies of text, fabrics and graphics. Printing processes enhanced communications, and contributed a great deal to the evolution of commerce, law and culture.

Block Printing

It is a technique to print text or graphic designs that had long been in fashion across East Asia. The art first appeared in China during antiquity as a way of printing textiles and subsequently the paper. As art of cloth printing, the ancient examples that exist so long in China date back to the 4th century.

Printing Press

Ukiyo-e has been the best quality of all known type of Japanese woodblock art printing. The European uses of the technique on paper can be explained by the then prevailed art terminology, “woodcut”, other than the block-books that were printed in the 15th century.

In Egypt, India and Europe, however, the cloth-printing definitely was preceded by papyrus printing — a form of medium employed for printing very close to paper. Same prevailed in China. The process typically remains the same throughout the course of history to-date; in Europe specific design impression of printing had often been taken on silk until approached the 17th century.

Exploring the Art of Printing in the Islamic World

Tarsh, the Arabic name of Block printing was flourishing in Egypt and Arabia during the 9-10th centuries — predominantly for prayers and amulets. There is a little clue to propose that the printing blocks had been synthesized from a range of different materials other than wood; these included metals, viz. lead, tin and cast iron in addition to stone, glass, clay, etc. nevertheless, the techniques used have been incredible as they seem to have cast a little impact outside the Muslim domains.

No doubt Europe had been emulating the wood-block based techniques of printing from the Muslim world, in the beginning for fabric, the art of metal block printing remained largely absent in Europe. However, later on block printing was abandoned by the Islamic Central Asia subsequent to the movable type of printing had been adopted from China.

Printing in Europe

Block printing was first introduced to Christian Europe as a way of printing over cloth, where it had been a known practice by 1300. Graphic designs printed on cloth for religious ends used to be very large and vivid. However, with the convenient availability of paper about 1400, the medium of printing drastically shifted to miniature woodcut images and playing cards to be printed on hard paper. Such prints were being executed in huge numbers from round about 1425 onwards.

By the middle of the century, woodcut books, clock-books with both text and graphics, were normally etched in the same block, evolved as a cost efficient substitute for books and manuscripts to be printed with movable type. All these were brief but densely ornate works, mostly the best-sellers of their time, that have been appearing and reappearing in a number of different block-book version — the Ars moriendi and the Biblia Pauperum being the conspicuous examples.

History of Portugal

The terms “Portugal” emanates from the Roman “Portus Cale”. “Cale” had been an ancient population settled at the delta of the Douro River that fell into the Atlantic in the north of what is now Portugal. About 200 BC, the romans overtoook the Iberian Peninsula from the Carthaginians in the 2nd Punic War, and during the process captured Cale and gave it the new title “Portus Cale” meaning Port of Cale.

In the Middle Ages, the territory in the vicinity of Portus Cale was famously proclaimed as Portucale by the Suevi and visigoths. The name “Portucale” eventually turned into “Portugale” in the period between 7th and 8th centuries, but during the 9th century, that the term was used frequently to allude to the land between rivers Douro and Minho; the Minho flowed along the northern border between Portugal and Spain. The 11th and 12th witnessed “Portugale” transforming into “Portugal”.

Portugal Flag

The history of Portugal, as an European and an Atlantic nation, traces its known origins from the Early Middle Ages during the 15th and 16th centuries, when it rose to the status of the world power while the Age of Discovery was going on. The expansionistic expeditions of Portugese resulted in vast proportion wielding of empire such as territories in South America, Africa, Asia and Australasia.

During next couple of centuries, Portugal progressively lost a lot of its resource and prestige as the English, Dutch and French had taken an ever increasing share in slave and spice trade —the very economic dependency of the empire. The intruders were able to accomplish all this by surrounding and plundering vastly scattered Portugese trading post, and lands ransacking the territory of their economic wealth to ever dream of overseas world power.

Foreshadowing of strategic downfall started as after two fierce battles — the Battle of Alcacer Quibir held in Morocco in 1578 and Spain’s before time attempt to capture English in 1588 — Portugese at that time was in active union with Spain and shared its part of ships in the Spanish invasion fleet. Further weakening followed by the ruination of a greater part of its capital city in a 1755 earthquake, usurpation over its lands during Napoleonic wars and the cessation of the biggest colony — Brazil in 1822.


By mid 19th century through the late 1950s, about two million Portugese had left to settle in Brazil and the United States. In 1910, there had been a revolution that dethrowned the monarchical rule. Nevertheless, the republic formed subsequently showed inability to sort out national issues. Beside widespread corruption, despotism of church authority, and an approximate bankruptcy of the state, an armed coup, 1926, ushered into a dictatorial regime that was overtaken by yet another coup in 1974.

The newly formed government introduced large scale political reforms and allowed autonomy to all of Portugal’s colonies in Africa around 1975. Portugal is one of the leading member of the NATO, OECD and EFTA. Portugal joined EU in 1986.

History of Argentina

The Argentine Republic is the second largest country in South America. Geographically it is as a federation of 23 provinces in addition to an autonomous city, Buenos Aires. Argentina is the eighth largest country in the world by area and also area wise largest among Spanish speaking nations.

The name has descended from the Latin argentum meaning ‘silver’, which comes from the Ancient Greek meaning “white, shining”. Argentinos was an ancient Greek adjective meaning “silvery”. The initial use of the name Argentina dates back to the early 16th century sea faring of the Spanish and Portuguese conquerors through the Río de la Plata, famously Silver River.


The historians have divided the history of Argentina can be divided into following phases:

  • Early history or the pre-Columbian time,
  • The colonial period (roughly 1516 to 1810),
  • The independence wars,
  • The early post-colonial period of the nation (1810 to 1880)
  • The history of modern Argentina from around 1880.

Early history

The configuration of prehistory in the currently defined territory of Argentina began with the first human appearance on the southern point of Patagonia about 13,000 years ago. The first known presence of humans in Argentina is in Patagonia and dates from around 11,000 BC.

King Pachacutec, the rule of the Inca Empire, is known to have occupied present-day northwestern Argentina in 1480, merging it into a territory known as Collasuyu; the Guaraní created a culture based on sweet potato, yuca, and yerba maté. The central and southern areas were suppressed by nomads, the most densely inhabited among them were the Mapuches.

The recorded history started with the advent of Spanish historians as after the expedition of Juan Díaz de Solís had taken place in 1516 to Río de la Plata river that signifies the inception of Spanish domination in the region.

By 1776 the Spanish Crown had established the Viceroyalty of the Río de la Plata, a blanket term mentioning a wielding of territories out of which, with the Revolution of May 1810, started a process of progressive coming into being of a number of independent states, including United Provinces of Río de la Plata. After the declaration of independence on July 9, 1816 and the strategic defeat of the Spanish Empire in 1824, a federal state was established in 1853-1861, known today as the Republic of Argentina.

Modern history

A trend of foreign investment and immigration from Europe after 1870 showed the way to the emergence of modern agriculture and as a new Argentine society was reborn and the economy and the strengthening of a unified state. The rule of law was ensured in a substantial measure by Dalmacio Vélez Sársfield, who’s 1860 Commercial Code and 1869 Civil Code laid the sheet anchor for statutory laws for Argentine.

General Julio Argentino Roca’s military campaign in the 1870s established Argentine’s supremacy over the southern Pampas and Patagonia, subjugated the remaining indigenous peoples and left behind 1300 indigenous dead. Some scholars argue that it was operation of mass killing by the Argentine government.

History of Social Networking

A social network is characterized by a social structure based on individuals or institutions called “nodes,” operated by some specialized forms of interdependency, for example, kinship, friendship, financial transactions, aversion, sexual relationships, or commonality of beliefs, knowledge or esteem.

Exploring a brief history of social network – an analysis

Pioneers of social networks during the late 1800s are Émile Durkheim and Ferdinand Tönnies. Tönnies held that social groups could exist as ‘personal and direct social ties’ that would either liaise with individuals sharing values and beliefs or formal, uncongenial, and effective social links.

Social Networking

Durkheim espoused a non-individualistic interpretation of social factors maintaining that social phenomena arose when interacting individuals signified a reality that could be no longer considered in terms of the traits of individual performers. He made a distinction between a conventional society, a sort of ‘mechanical cohesion’ that exists as long as individual differences are ignored, and the modern society, as an expression of “organic unification”,  that shapes out of mutual assistance among individuals with distinctive outlook  on life having roles of  their own as unique persons.

After a brief pause in early years of the twentieth century, three major norms in social networking evolved. During the thirties, J.L. Moreno introduced the methodical recording and understanding of social interaction in small groups, particularly groups in class or workplace, whereas a Harvard based group supervised by W. Lloyd Warner and Elton Mayo probed into interpersonal relations in operation.

Social network analysis evolved over the course of the ‘kinship’ studies of Elizabeth Bott in England during the 1950s and the 1950s60s urbanization studies of the University of Manchester group of social scientists, focusing around Max Gluckman, and later J. Clyde Mitchell exploring community networks based in southern Africa, India and the United Kingdom.

Concomitantly, British anthropologist S.F. Nadel codified a theory of social structure that was influential in later network analysis. During 1960s70s, an increasing number of scholars endeavored to link different tracks and traditions. A dominant group was found centered around Harrison White and his students at Harvard University: Bonnie Erickson, Harriet Friedmann, Ivan Chase, Mark Granovetter, Nancy Howell, Joel Levine, Nicholas Mullins, John Padgett, Michael Schwartz and Barry Wellman.

Important in the early groups were Charles Tilly and Stanley Milgram, the former focused on networks in political sociology and social movements, while the latter developed the “six degrees of separation” thesis. Mark Granovetter and Barry Wellman are one of the former students of White who had elicited and publicized social network analysis.

In the 1970s, a ‘substantively-oriented University of Toronto sociology group’ emerged, based on early students of Harrison White: S.D. Berkowitz, Harriet Friedmann, Nancy Leslie Howard, Nancy Howell, Lorne Tepperman and Barry Wellman. The group also included the noted modeler and game theorist Anatol Rapoport. So far as relates the theory, it presented critic, ‘methodological individualism and group-based analyses’, debating that considering the world as a set of social networks could offer increased analytic force.

History of Facebook

A social networking website, Facebook is privately operated and owned by Facebook, Inc. The site has been functional since September 2006; anyone over 13 having a valid e-mail address can be registered as a Facebook user. The members with Login rights can add friends to the site and correspond with them via text messages, and sometimes update their personal profiles to suggest friends about themselves.

Moreover, members can join networks structured by workplace, school, or college. The name of website originates from the common name of books a university administration would give to students at the commencement of the academic year in the United States with a view of helping students to get to know each other in a socially befitting manner.


It was with the blessings of Mark Zuckerberg who founded Facebook in collaboration with his college roommates and fellow computer science students Eduardo Saverin, Dustin Moskovitz and Chris Hughes while he was himself studying at Harvard University.

The registration with the site was formerly restricted to the founding members at Harvard only, but was later extended to other colleges in the Boston area, the Ivy League, and Stanford University as well. Later the membership expanded spontaneously to potentially accommodate any university student, then high school students, and at length, anyone aging 13 or beyond. At present the Facebook harbors over 400 million functional users worldwide.

The pioneering idealization of Facebook was inspired from a product introduced by Zuckerberg’s prep school Phillips Exeter Academy, which for years had been publishing and delivering a printed handbook of all students and members of faculty, could be unofficially declared the then “face book”.

From the onset Facebook has been facing some charges. A number of times it has been blocked in different countries such as, China, Vietnam, Syria, and Iran. Quite frequently it has been banned at work places to prevent employees from wasting time indulging with the service.

In addition to others, there has also been argument on “Privacy” that was compromised on a number of times. Facebook had also to settle a lawsuit regarding claims over intellectual property, particularly source code. The website has also been entangled in differences over the sale of fans and friends.

A study titled Compete.com, dated January 2009, has ranked Facebook as the most accessed / visited social network during a month by worldwide active users around the globe after MySpace. Entertainment Weekly ranks it in its end-of-the-decade ‘best-of’ list, pronouncing, ‘Had Facebook not existed, how would we “stalk our exes”, remember our dear ones’ birthdays, pester our friends, and play an exciting game of Scrabulous?’

Recently, there have been reports about Facebook suggesting an initial public offering — “issue equity shares as stock to investors”. Zuckerberg, however, has emphasized that it will not be held for a couple of more years, as the company does not need additional capital any more. Some analysts have also concerns that the Facebook IPO could specifically be a weak one.

History of White House

White House designates the official residence and chief workplace of the President of the United States. Its design was conceived by the Irish-born architect James Hoban. Built between 1792 and 1800 largely employing white-painted Aquia sandstone in the late Georgian style, the White House has been the residence of all the U.S. Presidents since the time of John Adams.

In 1801, when Thomas Jefferson shifted into the home, he, by consulting architect Benjamin Henry Latrobe, extended the building outward, making room for two colonnades meant to mask stables and storage.

White House

The building of present day White House was formerly known as the “Presidential Mansion”, “President’s Palace”, or “President’s House”. The earliest known evidence of the public pronouncing it “White House” was witnessed in 1811. The name “Executive Mansion”, however, was in vogue in official contexts as after President Theodore Roosevelt ruled out the formal name by having “White House–Washington” printed on the stationery in 1901.

The recent letterhead title shows the arrangement, “The White House” with the word “Washington” centered beneath, dates back to the administration of Franklin Delano Roosevelt.

During the War of 1812, in 1814, the house was set on fire by the British Army over the course of the Burning of Washington, ruining the interior and blazing a great proportion of the exterior. Renovation began soon afterwards, as the President James Monroe moved into the scantly refurbished house in October 1817.

In 1824, rebuilding began with the addition of the South Portico and the North by 1829. In view of the crowding in the executive mansion, President Theodore Roosevelt had to shift all work offices to the West Wing in 1901.

Less than a decade later, President William Howard Taft was able to expand the West Wing and furnished the first Oval Office to be moved at length as the section received expansion. The third-floor attic, however, was converted to residential quarters in 1927 by reinforcing the existing hip roof with longitudinal shed dormers.

The new erection of East Wing was marked as reception area for social events; Jefferson’s colonnades had linked the new wings. East Wing adaptations finished in 1946, leaving additional space for office. In 1948, the load-bearing external walls of the house and internal wooden beams approaching a near collapse. Harry S. Truman, had the interior rooms completely disassembled and a new frame work of internalized load-bearing steel was erected inside the walls. Once this job was accomplished, the interior chambers were reconstructed.

The name ‘White House’ is regularly being used as a metonym for the Executive Office of the President of the United States and also for the administration and advisers. In the year 2007, White House was ranked second on the American Institute of Architects record of “America’s Favorite Architecture.”