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Archive for August, 2007

Time for Change… Environmental Disasters Just Years Ahead

Sri Lanka shoreline, before and after the earthquake
Picture from the BBC (2004).

Will we be seeing more natural disasters in years to come? It sure looks like it, but when will people decide to take action and apply some change?

..”Sea ice in the Arctic helps keep those regions cool by reflecting sunlight that might be absorbed by darker land or ocean surfaces. Exposed to direct sun, for example, instead of reflecting 80 percent of the sunlight, as ice does, the ocean absorbs 90 percent of sunlight. That causes the ocean to heat up and raises Arctic temperatures further.”

Information Can be Most Vital

A lot of hostility has been directed at an extraordinary project which strives to bring inter-connected laptops to each child in the developing world. Access to information and self expression may even be more important than the immediate need for food and shelter, assuming that you already have them. Watch the following video and decide for yourselves if access to the Internet can actually make a different in exploited and suppressed parts of the world.

My Concern

My concern is that many of us are preaching to the choir
My concern is that, while many of us know the truth, the vast majority is uninterested in it
My concern is that society devolves into a more severe case of pyramid scheme
My concern is digital slavery, motored by so-called ‘enablement features’ like DRM

My concern is that many people just don’t care

My concern is that, although crime in daylight is happening, the police remains indifferent
My concern is that authorities are virtually in companies’ pockets
My concern is that censorship on the Web is rising
My concern is that evidence of crime is gradually disappearing

My concern is that many people just don’t care

My concern is that stereotypes are being used to dismiss those who are concerned
My concern is that China has begun sending blogging protesters to mental institutes
My concern is that American telecoms shill for the President by deleting criticism
My concern is that Australia uses the “protect the children excuse” to introduce censorship

My concern is that many people just don’t care

My concern is that high-level authorities pay people to rewrite history
My concern is that many people around us are marketing agents in disguise
My concern is that large company devour small companies
My concern is that are heading toward oligarchy

My concern is that many people will never care

My concern is that science returns to Dark Ages because of intellectual ownership
My concern is that prices are elevated and the gap between upper and lower society is widened
My concern is that the world does not care about anything but profit
My concern is that people in foreign countries are perceived as irrelevant

My concern is that many people will never care

My concern is that the human race is destroying its home
My concern is that planet Earth is only important to one’s own generation
My concern is that Big Lie strategies are gaining attraction
My concern is that democracy is, by definition, just an illusion in existence

My concern is that many people will never care

My concern is that humanity has become self destructive
My concern is that decent people are being demoted, humiliated, and discourged
My concern is about politics becoming very finance-dependent
My concern is that the media is used as a brainwash tool controlled by a small wealthy minority

My concern is that many people will never care

Be concerned

Think Before You Drive, Think Before You Fly

Big Plane

Several times in the past I protested against people desire to make long journeys just for the sake of it (including status and social norms). There are other reasons, however, why traveling is not desirable.

Your trip from San Francisco to London and back will cover 17236 Km and produce 1.9 tonnes of CO2

Why Operating Systems Become Irrelevant

The same old argument returns, but it seems evident that while operating systems are not going away, their role will be lessened.

The importance of an operating system will always be tied to fundamentals such as hardware detection (driver support) and the ability to run a Web browser with simple services. Watch this video.

Be aware that Microsoft strives to end this nirvana of platform-independent use of a PC. It recently introduced Silverlight, which is a Web technology that is tied to Microsoft’s desktop technology. Essentially, Microsoft wants to make the Web (including services and mashups) more Microsoft-dependent. Under the guise of choice and functionality, Microsoft strives to regain lockin. It schemes to do so by making the Web work better (or work only) with Windows.

Enlightenment – Looks Great and Runs on 10-year-old PCs

Lightweight GNU/Linux distribution which packs a lot of eye candy. Elive is shown in this brand-new video.

Be aware that Elive can run on computers that are very old, even Pentium I/IIs.

Exploiting the Poor and Then Throwing Garbage at Them

Articles like this can really make you sad (or angry). The world continues its mad upgrade cycle and dumps its trash onto less fortunate people, whose health is in turn compromised. This deserves wider coverage in the mainstream media, which ought to feel very guilty.

Do you know what happens to your used computer equipment after it has been discarded? The answer may surprise you. Even if you have tried to recycle it, your old hardware often gets shipped to a developing nation in direct violation of international law. Useful components are then extracted — without safety precautions — by locals earning pennies a day and who are exposed to a range of hazardous toxins that include lead, beryllium, mercury, cadmium, and brominated flame retardants.

Though slated to be banned over a decade ago, the practice continues and seems to be growing. North America, Japan, and South Korea are among the worst offenders. Solutions exist, and free software is a small part of them, but implementing them remains a painfully slow process.

Except for small groups like the Seattle-based Basel Action Network, almost no organization is investigating the situation, nor are governments and recyclers eager to advertise what amounts to an illegal trade. Given the minimal coverage from mainstream media, few people are aware that the problem even exists.

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