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Israel, A Startup Nation

四月 03 2014 Published by under Design

I recently had the opportunity to visit my parents in Israel. 

Israel is a nation with interesting stories. During the 6th Century the diaspora(the historical exile and dispersion of the Jews) began. Starting from the the conquest by the Babylonians, followed by the Romans….As the persecution continues, the Jews fled to many different parts of the word including, US, France, Canada, UK, Russia, Argentina, Germany… 

 It was not until 1948, the Israel nation was established. Even after the establishment, many of its neighboring countries were eager to wipe them out from the map. Israel shared its border with Egypt, Jordan, Palestine, Lebanon…Wars between its neighboring countries persisted even until today.

However, even with all the instability, the nation was able to attract many financial capitals into the nations. Israel has formed its own financial center at Tel-Aviv. Today, Israel has a GDP per capita of USD36,200.(Taiwan’s GDP per capita is at 20,706 ). Israel currently has the world second highest startup firms (lagging behind US only), and largest number of NASDAQ-listed companies outside North America. In 2010, according to IMD, Israel ranked 17th among the world’s most economically developed nations. 

According to the World Economy Forum, Israel is …

1st in the world for flexibility and adaptability
1st in the world for scientific research
1st in the world for entrepreneurship
1st in the world for information technology skills
1st in the world for expenditure on R&D (as % of GDP) 2nd in the world for innovative capacity
2nd in the world for venture capital
4th in the world in utility patents per million population 

With all that being said, let me share some of the photos taken during my trip to Israel.

 

 Tel-Aviv : The Financial Heart of Israel and of the World

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The building behind is where my dad works at and is also where the Taipei Economic & Cultural office is located. The building is occupied by many large firms such as IBM, Deloitte, Accenture, BCG….

 

 Language – Hebrew:

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The national language is Hebrew. English is not widely used in Israel. It is hard to communicate in English even in Tel-Aviv. The Hebrew language is written from right to left. The above receipt is written in Hebrew, making no sense to me!

 

FOOD! What do they eat

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Above is a picture of my family having a meal by the beach. The sunshine is great at Israel, almost too much for most time. As you can see, we have to have our sun glasses on to prevent the brightness of the sun. The amount of rain that Israel gets in a year is about the amount of rain we get in a  day in Taiwan! Well, talking about food, their main source of starch is from bread. They have a bread called Pita, which is a flat bread, usually comes in a round or oval shape. Most of their vegetables come in the form of salads. Its hard to find cooked vegetables in Israel. My mom tries to stir fry the vegetables at home, but it tasted really bad since most of the vegetables sold in Israel are not meant to be cooked. By the way, Israeli really love cucumbers!  You could find cucumbers in most of their dishes.

Overall, their food are very light on the stomach: does not contain much grease and does not contain heavy seasonings. Yes, the cons for such a healthy diet is the sacrifice on the taste. It really doesn’t taste that good 🙁

However due to the heathy diet and passion for exercising, Israelii’s life expectancy is among the world highest: 80 years of age(excluding the ones that sacrified during the war!).

 

Jerusalem: One of the oldest city in the world!

Located on a plateau in the Judean Mountains between the Mediterranean and the Dead Sea. Jerusalem is the most populous city in Israel, with a population of 8 million.

TEMPLE

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The picture above is the temple where the coffin top Jesus laid upon is currently located. The coffin top that Jesus laid upon after the crucifixion.

WAILING WALL

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 The picture above was taken at the wailing wall, also known as the western wall. The western wall is a remnant of the ancient wall that surrounded the Jewish Temple. The walls stands about 8m high and its a site for Jewish prayers and pilgrimage.

The picture on the left is a picture taken during a ritual for a boy’s coming of age. Each Jewish boy would come to the wailing for the coming of age ritual at the age of 14. As you may wonder, the little black box tied to the forehead on some men in the picture is a tiny version of the bible.

The wall is separated into two areas, one side for the men and one side for women. The men and women are not allowed to cross over to the other side. 

If you take a close look at the wall. There are many holes on the walls with papers inside them. These paper are not trash from the visitors, but are messages from each of the believers to god. They believe that placing their messages into the walls is a way for communicating with god.

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 More pictures on Jerusalem

 

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By  Daywey, Operations PM

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