World

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<a href="https://twitter.com/UNHaiti/status/805826804497993728">Nations Unies Haïti</a>

It was seven years ago today, at 4:53 p.m., that Haiti was violently shaken. In just 35 seconds, the 7.0 earthquake destroyed much of the nation’s capital, Port-au-Prince, and claimed more than 200,000 lives.

Just over three months ago, on Oct. 4, Hurricane Matthew dealt another devastating blow to the country. The Category 4 storm’s 145-mph winds tore through Haiti’s southern peninsula, washing away farmland — one of the island nation's “breadbaskets” — along with vast swaths of homes and trees, and killing hundreds of people.

Zhou Youguang, the inventor of a system to convert Chinese characters into words with the Roman alphabet, died Saturday at the age of 111. Since his system was introduced nearly six decades ago, few innovations have done more to boost literacy rates in China and bridge the divide between the country and the West.

For the past 17 years, Sam Barsky has knit sweaters that depict places he's seen around the world, including the Golden Gate Bridge, Stonehenge, Jerusalem's Western Wall — even a field of electrical pylons.

But what's made Barsky an internet phenomenon, with well over a million hits on various websites, are photos of the knitter himself posing in front of a scene, wearing his matching sweater.

Here's a quick roundup of some of the mini-moments you may have missed on this week's Morning Edition.

Eggcelent Island

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SCOTT SIMON, HOST:

Charts can seem dull. But not to data scientist Tariq Khokhar at the World Bank. When he looked through a year's worth of charts, graphs, maps and more, he was excited by the numbers.

For example, although the world's population has increased by 2 billion people since 1990, there are 1.1 billion fewer people living in extreme poverty, under $1.90 a day (highlighted in blue in the chart below). "I'm amazed at the progress," Khokhar says.

President-elect Trump told a press conference Wednesday that he would step back from running his company to prevent possible conflicts of interest once he's in office. To help prove it, he said he had just rejected a $2 billion deal to develop a golf course in Dubai, United Arab Emirates, adding that he wasn't required to do so because he isn't bound by any conflict-of-interest laws once he's president.

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<a href="https://twitter.com/rpdsanescobar/status/819161154245316608" target="_blank">Twitter screenshot</a>

There is no country in the world called San Escobar.

But in the age of "fake news" let's just imagine for a moment a "fake country" called San Escobar.

Think of it as "a small country located between Mexico and Guatemala with 200,000 citizens, with several main cities, including Esperal Bay, Santo Subito, and with several major exports including tomatoes and wine," says Ewa Lalik, a technology blogger in Warsaw, Poland.

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ROBERT SIEGEL, HOST:

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KELLY MCEVERS, HOST:

Each week on The World, we feature a unique selection of music, and every week, we put together the highlights for you here. 

YouTube-inspired music confessionals

Songwriter Teitur Lassen is from the Faroe Islands. His latest collection of songs is a collaboration with American pianist and composer Nico Muhly, and performed with the Dutch ensemble Holland Baroque. The songs were inspired by YouTube videos in which people share something unique about themselves. — Marco

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Courtesy L. Somi Roy

Persia claims to be the birthplace of polo, but the modern version of the game comes from the small state of Manipur in northeastern India. The British discovered it there and brought “hockey on horseback” to the West in the 19th century. These days, the West is going back to Manipur to play polo.

Since 2013, members of the United States Polo Association have been coming to compete with Manipuris. The 2017 USPA-Manipur games get underway next week in Manipur’s capital, Imphal.

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