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Armenia

  1. Armenia Makes Chess a Mandatory School Subject

    Armenia is a country mad for chess, having won a number of world chess competitions in recent years. Now, the country will impart a love of chess to the next generation, committing $1.43 million to an educational program that will see chess taught as a school curriculum subject for children six and above, who will study chess in classrooms for two hours per week. While the country is framing the program in terms of Armenia's world competitiveness in chess, it's fair to expect that there will be broader educational benefits: Education ministry official Arman Aivazian said that chess lessons would "foster schoolchildren's intellectual development" and teach students to "think flexibly and wisely." (news.com.au via Neatorama. pic via Shutterstock.)

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  2. 75-Year-Old Woman with Shovel Accidentally Cuts Off Almost All Internet Service in Armenia

    According to local authorities, a 75-year-old woman from Georgia (the Eurasian country, not the US state) accidentally cut off Internet service to the entire country of Armenia. With a shovel. Apparently, on March 28th, the woman was digging for copper to sell as scrap metal when she accidentally sliced through a fiber-optic cable that linked Georgia's network with Armenia's. The Guardian reports that as Georgia provides 90% of Armenia's Internet service, this caused "Web users in the nation of 3.2 million people [to be] left twiddling their thumbs for up to five hours as the country's main internet providers - ArmenTel, FiberNet Communication and GNC-Alfa – were prevented from supplying their normal service." (Bloomberg pegs the figure at over 12 hours.) The outage was detected by a network-monitoring service based in Western Europe, and the woman arrested shortly thereafter. The woman in question was "temporarily released due to her old age," but faces up to three years in prison for damaging property. (via Guardian)

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  3. Oldest Shoes Ever Found: Well-Preserved, but Not Well Enough for Fall Season

    What do I know about shoes? I know my Balenciagas from my Louboutins at the very least, but I only dabble in those most famous of footwear because they look dangerous enough to take down a mugger or ninja. Like that scene from Sex and the City? You know, when Carrie... Anyway, shoes are not among my chiefest of interests. Cool archaeological finds, on the other hand, are more my cup of loose tea. However, it's not like the two can't combine right?

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