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Miloš Kučera

On Writing and Handwriting

Writing is often considered secondary to the spoken language, as it is only coded sound-by-sound. But other scholars have demonstrated that writing is similar to ‘arithmetic’: a cognitive structuring, a shift to the meta-level (‘for the eye’). Handwriting (referred to here as the cursive writing in the sense of joined up handwriting, of ‘écriture liée’) differs from writing (in the first analysis): it has its own grammar composed of paradigmatic gestemes and tracemes and its own syntagmatic rules that connect them. In emotional terms, handwriting is designed to provide a special pleasure by its own drive (instinct, ‘Trieb’). But there is also cognitive aspect to it: the rapidity and fluidity of a cursive writing could be (in professional writing, for instance) more important (at the climax of the creative process) than it being legible for all eternity. The project of the new handwriting reform for Czech schools, abolishing the liaison between letters, is shown to be a modern and technically simplified form of calligraphy.

Open access

Ján Merganič, Katarína Merganičová, Bohdan Konôpka and Miloš Kučera

Abstract

Since forests can play an efficient role in the mitigation of greenhouse gas emissions, objective information about the actual carbon stock is very important. Therefore, the presented paper analysed the carbon stock in the living merchantable trees (with diameter at breast height above 7 cm) of the Czech forests with regard to groups of tree species and tree compartments (wood under bark with diameter above 7 cm, wood under bark with diameter below 7 cm, bark, green twigs, foliage, stump and roots). We examined its regional distribution and relationship to the number of inhabitants and the gross domestic product. The data used for the analysis originated from 13,929 forest plots of the first Czech National Forest Inventory performed between 2001 and 2004. The total tree carbon stock was obtained as a sum of the carbon stock in the individual tree compartments estimated from the biomass amount in the compartments multiplied by the relative carbon content. Wood biomass amount was calculated by multiplying a particular part of tree volume with species-specific green wood density. The total amount of carbon stored in forest trees in the Czech Republic was over 327 mill. t, which is about 113 t of carbon per ha of forests. The highest carbon amount (160 mill. t, i.e. 49.0% of the total amount) was fixed in spruce. The minimum carbon amount fixed in the forest cover (14.35 mill. t) was calculated for Ústecký kraj (region), while the maximum carbon amount (51.51 mill. t) was found in Jihočeský kraj.

Open access

Vladimír Šebeň, Miloš Kučera, Katarína Merganičová and Bohdan Konôpka

Abstract

We present the state and the development of forests on non-forest land in the area of the Czech Republic (CZ) and Slovakia (SK). The forests have a different origin, and are currently outside the interest of forest management, nor the whole forestry related legislation is applicable to them. The national forest inventory (NFI) was performed in CZ in the years 2001–2004 and 2011–2014, while in SK in the years 2005–2006 and 2015–2016. The NFI sampling was applied to all forests, i.e. to those growing on both forest and non-forest land. According to the NFI data, the current proportion of forests on non-forest land was not negligible, since in CZ it reached almost 10%, and in SK even more, 13%. While in CZ they were more evenly spatially distributed, in SK they occurred mainly in the central and eastern parts. Broadleaved tree species accounted for approximately two thirds of their growing stock. Their tree species composition was more diverse than the one on forest land. Carbon stock in tree (aboveground and belowground) biomass of forests on non-forest land was 28.5 ±1.6 million tons in CZ and 20.3 ±2.9 million tons in SK, which represented 7.7 ±0.4% and 7.7 ±1.1% of the total tree biomass in CZ and SK, respectively. Hence, it is important to take the forests on non-forest land into account, to see their current state positively, to include them to other forests and to try to maximise the use of their functions by society.