December 29, 2010

iON | December 2010

Cash Flow

29 December 2010
Part 1, Part 2, Part 3

22 December 2010
Part 1, Part 2, Part 3

15 December 2010
Part 1, Part 2, Part 3

8 December 2010
Part 1, Part 2, Part 3

1 December 2010
Part 1, Part 2, Part 3

December 24, 2010

iON | Don Van Vliet/Captain Beefheart

Bob asks iON about the report of Captain Beefheart’s death.

National Public RadioAvant-garde musician Captain Beefheart died December 17 in California from complications of multiple sclerosis. He was 69.

An all-time favorite of rock critics—and known to readers of lists of the best rock albums of all time as the guy with the hat and the fish face—Beefheart earned a reputation for making challenging music. But his work was, at its roots, well-executed blues-based rock.

His given name was Don Vliet—he added a Van in between his first and last names later. He was one of those musicians who sold fewer records than his best-known fans: Tom Waits, members of R.E.M. and New Order are just a few of dozens. The late British DJ John Peel called Beefheart a true genius, possibly the only one rock ever produced.

December 23, 2010

The Digital Story of the Nativity | Christmas 2.0

CNNWhat if the Nativity were to happen today, in the age of Google and Twitter?

“Mary, you’re going to give birth to the Son of God.” iPhone notification

Designed by Excentric, a Lisbon, Portugal-based digital marketing company, “The Digital Story of the Nativity” tells the familiar biblical story through Google searches, e-mails, tweets, Facebook “Likes” and Foursquare “check-ins.”

Some of the highlights are:
  • Hertz car (donkey) rental from Nazerth to Bethlehem
  • Joseph buys a cow and donkey in Farmville
  • Facebook event invitation to “Meet the Baby” at the Stable
  • Worship the Baby hashtag on Twitter
  • The wise men shop on Amazon for gold, frankincense and myrrh

Thanks, Tayzay.

Hanna | Trailer

Raised in the wilds of Finland by her father, an ex-CIA man, 14 year-old Hanna is trained to be the perfect assassin.

Hanna stealthily journeys across Europe while eluding agents dispatched by a ruthless intelligence operative with secrets of her own. As she nears her ultimate target, Hanna faces startling revelations about her existence and unexpected questions about her humanity.

IBM | Next 5 in 5 Predictions 2010

The IBM crystal ball unveils its fifth annual “Next Five in Five” list of innovations with the potential to change the way people work, live and play over the next five years.

Thanks Akito.

December 21, 2010

360° Video

YellowBird presents 360° video.

Free yourself from a single point of view—go 360, get freaky, press play and look anywhere you want to by clicking and dragging your mouse.

Check out the Comin to Get Me 360° music video in HD.

Below: Behind the scenes of the Comin to Get Me 360° video.

I Just Had Sex


December 19, 2010

Julian Assange | Interview, 16 December 2010

17 December 2010—MSNBC interviews Julian Assange who is out on bail.

Below: WikiRebels—The Documentary by Swedish Television.

Below: 1 August 2010—Julian Assange interview with Russia Today in London.

Atomic Tom | ‘Take Me Out’ on the iPhone

NY Daily NewsAtomic Tom perform Take Me Out on the NYC B train to Brooklyn with multiple iPhones connected to amplifiers using microphone, bass, guitar and drum apps.

Vi Hart | Understanding Math by Doodling

National Public RadioVi Hart calls herself “a recreational mathemusician currently living on Long Island.”

She talks faster than a machine gun, loves math, and draws like a dream.

I told you she talks fast. You may have noticed she’s a touch angry about how math is taught in America. She thinks it can be done better—more intuitively, joyously.

Charles Yu | How to Live Safely in a Science Fictional Universe


Charles Yu’s How to Live Safely in a Science Fictional Universe is a glorious meta-science-fiction—part owner’s manual and part narrative.

In the book, a man named Charles Yu is a time-machine repairman. The specific machine is the TM-31 Recreational Time Travel Device. Basically he deals with people who rent a time machine because they think they can go back and change their pasts and then they get stuck in some alternate universe or adrift in space-time somewhere or somewhen they don’t want to be.

“I have a job because I know how to fix the cooling module on the quantum decoherence engine of the TM-31. But the reason I have job security is that people have no idea how to make themselves happy. For some people, that’s the only reason they rent the thing, to go back and fix their broken lives.”

His two companions are TAMMY, a neurotic, depressed, sexy operating system, and Ed, a non­existent yet “ontologically valid” dog.

Yu is searching for his father who invented the time machine and then stepped into a it and vanished.

“My father built a time machine and then he spent his whole life trying to figure out how to use it to get more time.”

Yu purchases a retirement package for his mother, which takes the form of a time loop: she lives the same, happy hour of her life over and over forever—or until he can no longer afford the payments.

He lives in Minor Universe 31, a universe of science fiction wrapped around an inner core of approximately 17 percent reality (by volume). MU31 was abandoned by its original builder/writer midway through its construction, leaving its physics only 93 percent installed.

In Yu’s universe, news is accessed news via clouds:

“The guy reaches his stop and gets off, leaving his news cloud behind. I love watching the way these clouds break up, little wisps of information trailing off like a flickering tail, a dragon’s tail of typewriter keys and wind chimes, those little monochrome green cloudlets, a fog of fragments and images and words. On busy news days, the entire city is awash in these cloudlets, like 50 million newspapers brought to breathing, blaring life, and then obliterated into a sea of disintegrating light and noise.”

Read an excerpt here and here.

Word Lens | Real Time Translation App

Word Lens translates printed words from one language to another in real time.

Currently available for the iPhone and iPod Touch—more phones coming—and only in English/Spanish—more languages coming—the app uses the device’s built-in video camera to superimpose translated text to the screen.

Google Updates Mobile Maps for Android to 3D

Now you can explore maps in 3D with Google Maps 5.0 on Android-powered devices.

Google Maps Navigation | GPS Navigation System

Google Maps Navigation (Beta), is an internet-connected GPS navigation system that provides turn-by-turn voice guidance as a free feature of Google Maps on
Android 2.0 phones.

Google Body Browser | Explore The Human Anatomy In 3D

Google’s Body Browser is like Google Earth for the body.

You can zoom in and out and remove layers of the body to reveal what is underneath as well as search for muscles, organs, bones and more.

Body Browser uses new 3D web technology (WebGL). At some point, browsers will have this feature embedded but for now you’ll need a browser version like Google’s Chrome Beta to view the Body Browser.

If you prefer not to install Chrome Beta, you can turn on the WebGL feature in Chrome 8 (the latest stable version). To enable WebGL in Chrome 8 type about:flags in the address bar, click “Enable” next to “WebGL” and then click on “Restart now”.

Google Bike Map

In the US, Google Maps offers step-by-step biking directions; bike trails outlined directly on the map; and a new Bicycling layer that indicates bike trails, bike lanes, and bike-friendly roads.

December 17, 2010

Milena | Bionic Ballerina


Dressed in an outfit custom featuring LED lights, 17 individual lasers, and ballerina point shoes, the Bionic Ballerina, Milena, displays moves that seem to defy the laws of human flexibility.

December 14, 2010

WikiLeaks’ James Bond-Like Data Headquarters

National Public RadioInterview with journalist Philip Shenon about WikiLeaks.

Daily Mail UK100ft below ground in a former Cold War nuclear bunker, the WikiLeaks files are being kept in the Pionen data centre, a vast cave, drilled into granite under the Vita Berg Park in Stockholm.

Swedish architects Albert France-Lanord were inspired by Bond sets created by Sir Kenneth Adams.

Pionen houses dozens of super-servers belonging WikLeaks and other companies, and could reportedly withstand a nuclear attack.

Old German U-boat engines serve as back-up generators.

Dai Haifei | Mobile Egg House

all photos: Beijing Times

China DailyUndaunted by Beijing’s sky-high rental prices, newly graduated architect Dai Haifei used his skills to create his own portable egg-style home .

The two-meter high house with two wheels underneath is made from sack bags on the outside wall, bamboo splints on the inside and wood chippings and grass seeds in between.

He says that his mom and dad, a maid and construction worker respectively, would like to buy him a house, but would have to make payments for 300 years to do so.

The interior consists of a bed, water tank, storage and a solar powered lamp.

“The seeds will grow in the natural environment and it’s cold-proof,” Haifei explained.

Haifei has been ordered off the streets, and is uncertain of where he will go. Facing tough economic realities, the young architect preferred to design and build the $964 structure than to rent a traditional apartment.

For the moment, Haifei is crashing with a friend, and weighing his options. Fortunately, he still has his job, and his firm has kept the egg house.

Thanks Ashley and Duffy.

Dan Charnas | The Big Payback: The History of the Business of Hip-Hop

National Public Radio—Interview with Dan Charnas about his book, The Big Payback: The History of the Business of Hip-Hop.

Read Kindle eBooks Without a Kindle

Amazon released new apps which allow anyone to read Kindle eBooks on any device without a Kindle.

That’s right, now you can read amazon’s Kindle eBooks on your laptop, desktop computer, iPhone, Android phone, Blackberry, iPad, etc.

You can download thousands of FREE eBooks that are in the public domain like The Adventures of Sherlock Holmes, Pride and Prejudice, and Treasure Island.

My favorite feature is free book samples—read the first chapter before you decide to buy.

Some of my favorites:

Life by Keith Richards
Decoded by Jay-Z
Griftopia: Bubble Machines, Vampire Squids, and the Long Con That Is Breaking America by Matt Taibbi

Below: Zero History by William Gibson.

Now You Can Send Free Tech Support to Your Friends

If you are handy with a computer, you may get requests from friends to help them with their computers.

Some of the folks who work at Google found they were having a similar experience especially with parents asking for help.

So they created a series of handy videos that answer a lot of basic questions like:
  • How do I cut and paste
  • How do I create a strong password
  • How do I upgrade my browser
  • How do I check email on my phone
  • How do I transfer files between my computers
  • And many more

Google created a web site for this video tech support called You can see all the videos here.

Below: How to check email on your phone.

Sartre | An Autonomous Driving System

The European project, SARTRE (Safe Road Trains for the Environment), is testing a system that enables vehicles on the highway to follow a lead vehicle autonomously. The drivers of the cars in the convoys are then free to engage in tasks that to not involve driving such as reading, using their computers, eating, etc.

December 11, 2010

Matt Taibbi | Invasion of the Home Snatchers

Matt TaibbiThe foreclosure lawyers down in Jacksonville had warned me, but I was skeptical. They told me the state of Florida had created a special super-high-speed housing court with a specific mandate to rubber-stamp the legally dicey foreclosures by corporate mortgage pushers like Deutsche Bank and JP Morgan Chase. 

This “rocket docket,” as it is called in town, is presided over by retired judges who seem to have no clue about the insanely complex financial instruments they are ruling on. Their stated mission isn’t to decide right and wrong, but to clear cases and blast human beings out of their homes with ultimate velocity.

They certainly have no incentive to penetrate the profound criminal mysteries of the great American mortgage bubble of the 2000s, perhaps the most complex Ponzi scheme in human history—an epic mountain range of corporate fraud in which Wall Street megabanks conspired first to collect huge numbers of subprime mortgages, then to unload them on unsuspecting third parties like pensions, trade unions and insurance companies (and, ultimately, you and me, as taxpayers) in the guise of AAA-rated investments. Selling lead as gold, shit as Chanel No. 5, was the essence of the booming international fraud scheme that created most all of these now-failing home mortgages.

The rocket docket wasn’t created to investigate any of that. It exists to launder the crime and bury the evidence by speeding thousands of fraudulent and predatory loans to the ends of their life cycles, so that the houses attached to them can be sold again with clean paperwork. The judges, in fact, openly admit that their primary mission is not justice but speed.

If you’re foreclosing on somebody’s house, you are required by law to have a collection of paperwork showing the journey of that mortgage note from the moment of issuance to the present. You should see the originating lender (a firm like Countrywide) selling the loan to the next entity in the chain (perhaps Goldman Sachs) to the next (maybe JP Morgan), with the actual note being transferred each time.

But in fact, almost no bank currently foreclosing on homeowners has a reliable record of who owns the loan; in some cases, they have even intentionally shredded the actual mortgage notes. That’s where the robo-signers come in. To create the appearance of paperwork where none exists, the banks drag in these pimply entry-level types…and get them to sign thousands of documents a month attesting to the banks’ proper ownership of the mortgages.

Why don’t the banks want us to see the paperwork on all these mortgages? Because the documents represent a death sentence for them. According to the rules of the mortgage trusts, a lender like Bank of America, which controls all the Countrywide loans, is required by law to buy back from investors every faulty loan the crooks at Countrywide ever issued. Think about what that would do to Bank of America’s bottom line the next time you wonder why they’re trying so hard to rush these loans into someone else’s hands. Continue reading at Rolling Stone.

Below: Deposition of three “robo-signers”—Crytal Moore (wow, she’s a dead ringer for the Mona Lisa), Bryan Bly and Dhurata Doko—for Nationwide Title Clearing in Palm Harbor, Florida by attorney Christopher Forrest. Nationalwide Title has filed a lawsuit calling for the removal of the videos from YouTube.

Google Health

Google Health can help you better manage your health—from your diet to tracking your medications and it’s FREE.

“With Google Health, patients can get their lab results really quickly, they do not have to wait for a month to get a paper copy in the mail. They can review the lab result and they have a little note from me and they know I have tried to do something to help them. It’s very proactive, it allows them to take greater control over their health.

“They can take their medical record with them when they are encountering a new doctor. Can you imagine how empowering that is…it’s much more forthcoming, the person is engaged, they brought their own labs, they know what they are, and they can move ahead on the issues.”
~Dr. Stephanie Taylor, gynecologist—Carmel, CA

Below: Dr. Stephanie Taylor, gynecologist in Carmel, CA gives a testimonial on Google Health. She speaks about how her patients use Google Health to view their lab results online and organize all their medical records in one central and secure place.

What is Cloud Computing?

Below: Cloud computing for businesses large and small.

December 10, 2010

Google Opens Chrome Web Store Apps

A revolution is quietly taking place in the way individuals use their computers and the web.

Google is developing an operating system based on Google’s Chrome browser that will be installed on new computers in the first half of 2011.

Part of the idea behind the new OS is that users will access applications from their browsers and store their files in the “cloud” rather than on their computers. An advantage to this is that files can be accessed at any time from multiple devices such as smartphones, tablets like the iPad, desktop and laptop computers without the need to take up storage space on the devices.

Another advantage is that if something happens to your computer, your data is safely stored and available online (see video below).

The Google Chrome Web Store is now open and features applications for your computer similar to the apps on smartphones and the iPad.

Below: Update on the Google operating system.

Jawbone ICON

Maybe you feel that those trillions of dollars spent on warfare have been wasted but products developed with that money are finding their way into everyday use.

You no longer need to join the armed forces to assassinate background noise with military precision when talking on your smartphone. The Jawbone ICON Bluetooth headset uses a proprietary military-grade technology developed for tank commanders and helicopter pilots called NoiseAssassin so that your audience hears you and not the sounds around you.

You can also send text messages with your voice, listen to music, and get navigation directions all hands-free.

December 7, 2010

David Hockney Paints on the iPhone

National Public RadioDavid Hockney is displaying 300 iPhone and iPad paintings in a new show, Fresh Flowers, in Paris at Foundation Pierre BergĂ©—Yves Saint Laurent.

He’s made hundreds of these paintings with the Brushes app and emails many of them to his friends.

Gillette | How To Shave Your Groin

The nice folks at Gillette offer a handy guide for trimming your bush this holiday season.

Univ of Arizona Seeks Channelers/Communicators

Individuals with experience in channeling or communication with Deceased People, Spirit Guides, Angels, Other-Worldly Entities/Extraterrestrials, and a Universal Intelligence/God are invited to participate in an Entity Communication Study being conducted by the University of Arizona’s Laboratory for Advances in Consciousness and Health in the Department of Psychology.

Participants will not need to travel to the University, communication and is by phone, mail and email. The entire process is estimated to take approximately three to four hours spread out over several weeks.

More information here.

Use Google Translate to Order in Another Language

Google girls use the listen feature in Google translate to order takeout in Hindi from a real Indian restaurant.

iON | Wikileaks

Source: Cash Flow,

1 December 2010—iON is asked who is leaking information to Wikileaks.

Google Backs Satellites to Bring Internet Service to the Emerging World

Source: Google Public Policy Blog

“Google’s mission is to organize the world’s information and make it universally accessible and useful…” ~Larry Alder, Google business operations principal

Google plans to cover the Earth with Internet access giving meaning to the term Google Earth or is that Google’s Earth.

The company is backing a satellite venture which aims to provide Internet services to a population of over 3 billion people across Asia, Africa, Latin America and the Middle East who currently do not have regular Internet access.

The project is called O3b, for “the other three billion” whose access to the Internet is scarce and expensive.

The plan is to provide over 150 countries with high-speed Internet connectivity.

Because the satellites will be placed in orbit four times closer to the planet than regular geostationary satellites, customers should experience a significantly better and faster web experience similar to land based DSL or Optical Fiber. The O3b satellite transponders will have on average three to four times the capacity of those offered by GEO satellite systems.

Service is expected to begin in 2013 following the launch of the first eight satellites—additional satellites can be added as needed.

Watch video of O3b founder Greg Wyler.

Thanks MJ.

Google eBooks | Set Your Reading Free

Are you still reading paper books?

Google eBooks lets you access millions of books on your digital device anywhere anytime.

I’m not fond of reading on a desktop or laptop computer but I love reading on the iPad or even on the iPod Touch or iPhone. With Google eBooks, you can read on all these devices as well as Android phones.

Google says that they have 3 million free ebooks from the public domain and hundreds of thousands of more recent books for purchase.

All the books are stored in the cloud, so you do not have to take up space on your device storing your books and you can read them anytime anywhere.

I love reading in the dark or dim light with the iPad or smartphones.

You can read a sample of most of the newer books, way cool.

December 6, 2010

iON | Net Neutrality

1 December 2010—National Public RadioThe fight between NetFlix and Comcast could help determine who controls access to some of your favorite websites and how much that access costs.

It’s part of the larger net neutrality debate over how phone and cable companies manage Internet traffic. Wired’s Ryan Singel explains what’s at stake.

4 December 2010—National Public RadioAfter years of debate, the Federal Communications Commission is moving forward with controversial rules intended to preserve the open Internet.

“What you have is a lot of consumer groups coming out and looking at this and saying this is a real nightmare,” Sascha Meinrath says. Meinrath is with the New America Foundation, a think-tank in Washington, D.C. He says the proposed rules are full of loopholes.

For one thing, they would allow broadband providers to offer faster service to some companies—for a price.

“These rules could end up allowing companies to pick and choose the services and applications and even content that we are allowed to see online,” Meinrath says. “What it does is it gives legal protection for discriminatory behavior.”

24 November 2010—Cash FlowiON addresses net neutrality.

December 5, 2010

iON | “TSA, Don’t Touch My Junk!”

Source: Cash Flow,

24 November 2010—iON talks about the new TSA requirement that passengers have a choice of being x-rayed or felt-up.

“Up until 3 weeks ago, I didn’t have to have my balls touched to get into my own country.” ~Matt Kernan

It took blogger Matt Kernan 2.5 hours but he took a stand and convinced the TSA not to touch his junk.

Kernan informed the TSA he did not want to go through the infamous Backscatter imaging machine.

He was told that the alternative was an invasive pat-down search, but he politely told the TSA that he would consider any contact with his genital areas as sexual assault.

“As a US citizen, I have the right to move freely within my country as long as I can demonstrate proof of citizenship and have demonstrated no reasonable cause to be detained.”

Kernan was returning to the US from Paris and was leaving the airport not boarding a flight.

The video above is the audio of the encounter which Kernan recorded on his iPhone.

It’s worth reading Kernan’s version of the story “My TSA Encounter” on his blog. NOTE: at the time this was posted his blog was down but should be back soon.

Below: Musician Roxi Copeland wishes the TSA a Merry Christmas in her song “I’ll be Groped for Christmas.”

Below: “The Audacity of Grope: A TSA ExposĂ©” from the Campaign for Liberty.

Below: John Tyner tells TSA not to touch his junk and leaves airport without catching his flight after being detained.

December 2, 2010

TIK TOK KESHA Parody | Glitter Puke

Source: barelypolitical

Heavy Metal Cats

Source: barelypolitical

Katy Perry Firework Parody

Source: barelypolitical

Printing Buildings with 3D Printers

Architects have been using 3D printers to model designs for a few years, but now they can print buildings on site in full size.

The D-Shape building process prints out buildings similar to what ink-jet printers do to paper.

Architects can create almost an design with CAD models including fantastical shapes that would be impossible to create using traditional methods.

Layers of ‘structural ink’ (a magnesium based binder) are combined with sand, dust or gravel to create the structures from the CAD models.

This process returns the sand, dust or gravel back to its original Compact Stone state. The Stone is very similar to Marble.

The system is estimated to be four times faster than traditional building methods.

Despite the higher cost of the binder compared to Portland cement, the costs of D-Shape structures are 30%-50% lower than manual methods.

Postlerferguson has designed a cooling system called Microclimates, a series of evaporative cooling towers for use in dry hot climates such as Dubai, using the D-Shape system.

The structures have a large interior latticework. Water is fed to the top of the towers and cools the air as it falls through the lattice.

Create Your World with a 3D Scanner and Printer

Source: Popular Mechanics

Typically, we think scanners and printers copy photos or text on paper but you can create a 3D model for virtually any real world object using a 3D scanner and printer.

Jay Leno has both and uses them to reproduce rare auto parts for his classic car collection. The total cost of the two machines is around $18,000.

Thanks Carol.

December 1, 2010

iON | Foreclosure? Give Yourself Power-of-Attorney

Source: Cash Flow,

24 November 2010—iON reveals that if you are in foreclosure, you can grant yourself power-of-attorney for the bank that holds your mortgage, thereby, releasing the claim and canceling the debt.

Dan Buettner | Secrets Of Happiness

National Public RadioDan Buettner’s travels around the world (and on assignment for National Geographic) inspired him to discover and name the globe’s “blue zones,” the countries and societies with the longest life expectancy, the greatest happiness and other strengths.

His new book, Thrive, focuses on happiness in the “blue zones,” and how everyone can attain a better quality of life by following the happiest countries’ examples. Buettner spoke about his studies and how we can all infuse more joy into our lives.

Below: Buettner at TED.

Grow a Hemp House | The House of the Future

Source: Push Design

2.5 acres is enough land to grow a 1250 square foot home in 14 weeks.

America’s first hemp house has been built using Tradical Hemcrete, a mixture of 4 parts ground-up hemp to 1 part lime and 1 part water.

The home was built by Push Design for former mayor of Ashville, NC, Russ Martin and his wife, Karen Korp.

Breathable and no mold
Hemp walls are breathable and filter the air inside the home. Because of the breathability and the lime content, the walls will not mold.

R value over 30
A typical exterior hemp wall is 12 inches thick resulting in an R value of 30 BEFORE adding the cladding or interior surfaces. Oak Ridge National Laboratory states that the insulating values of hemp are actually even higher because typical R values do not take into consideration the temperature modulating qualities of hemp mass-based construction.

The high thermal mass of the walls allow for energy efficiency in all seasons and the breathability eliminates indoor air quality concerns. Because of the natural materials, there is no out-gas and no “new house smell” which is actually the odor of chemicals being released.

No Insects or Pests
Due to the lime content of the walls, termites and other pests cannot survive and will not attack a hemp wall.

One House = Ten Acres of Trees
It is estimated that one standard home built of hemp is the equivalent of planting ten acres of trees in terms of carbon sequestered. If 900 standard homes were built using hemp, over 45,000 TONS of CO2 would be saved during the building process.

The hemp house continues to sequestrates carbon over its lifetime as lime in the hempcrete calcifies and the wall basically turns to stone over time getting harder and stronger. Studies have estimated a 600-800 year life span for the walls.

Interior walls in the Ashville house are comprised of Pure Panel which is 100% recycled, corrugated cardboard sandwiched between magnesium oxide panels. Pure Panel is also toxin free, breathable, will not mold and has an incredible crush strength of 20,000 lb/sqft.

Below: Hemp house building in Ireland.

November 29, 2010

Taiwan Tower of Droplets Features Living Visible Energy

Sir Peter Cook and Gavin Robotham entered this design which took second place in the Taiwan Tower Conceptual International Competition.

The design is inspired by the creation of living visible energy in the form of algae to produce biofuel and biomass.

The tower features a museum and office spaces and is open to the public to view the algae process.

Taiwan Tower Features Floating Observatory Blimps

Source: Dorin Stefan Birou Arhitectura

Construction on the out-of-this-world Taiwan Tower skyscraper is slated to begin in 2012.

The project features 8 helium filed floating blimp elevators on the outside of the structure.

Each zeppelin-like observatory has a different shape and carries 50-80 people with stunning views of the city and the strait which separates Taiwan and China.

The innovative design incorporates:
  • geothermal heating in the basement
  • natural ventilation using the “chimney effect”
  • axially mounted wind turbines around the building core & solar panels to supply electricity
  • rainwater collection and purification

November 25, 2010

Sahara Desert Could Become the Earth’s Largest Solar Power Plant

DigInfoTVCould a single solar project supply half of the Earth’s energy needs?

The Japanese have launched the Sahara Solar Breeder Project that will use the planet’s largest desert, the Sahara, as an energy source. The idea is to build silicon manufacturing plants from the Sahara’s abundant sands which contains lots of silica for making silicon.

They will also build solar power plants and the power generated to “breed” more silicon and power plants.

November 24, 2010

November 22, 2010

Eminem | Love the Way You Lie ft Rihanna Parody

Source: Key of Awesome

You colored inside of the lines of my heart
Cause you opened me up and then you cut a fart in my heart
I'm so bored with this game that we’re playin
I guess that’s why they call em bored games
Well I am rubber and you are glue
Words bounce off of me and then stick on to you
Did you just call me a doo doo pie
That's all right. I know you are, but what am I?
I know you are, but what am I?

D.C. State Of Mind | Obama + Jay-Z Parody

Source: Best of Obama Girl

In D.C.
These lettered streets with confuse you
Fox News will abuse you
Now you're in D.C.
Congress peeps be voting on party lines
Ignoring important signs
Let’s hear it for D.C.!

November 21, 2010

Money Trees

Thanks, Alison.

Jon Jacobs | Sells His Virtual Property for $500 Thousand

FORBESJon Jacobs has just sold a virtual space station he’s spent the past five years managing for a whopping $635,000 in total, making over half a million dollars. Who would devote so much time and investment into something that doesn’t exist in the real world?

In the $635,000 sale, Jacobs sold off his virtual property (unReal Estate) in Entropia in chunks. The largest portion went to another avatar by the name of John Foma Kalun, who paid $335,000. This single transaction may be the largest virtual transaction ever, supplanting the previous record set by Erik “Buzz” Lightyear, another Entropia resident who bought The Crystal Palace Space Station for $330,000 in 2009.

Until recently, Neverdie was the owner of one of the hottest virtual properties in Entropia, Club Neverdie, situated on a virtual asteroid around Entropia’s first planet, Planet Calypso.

In virtual life, Jacobs is the avatar “Neverdie,” perhaps the most famous person in the whole of the Entropia Universe, a massively multiplayer online gaming platform designed by Swedish developer MindArk with a real cash economy. Jacobs bought the Entropia virtual asteroid Club Neverdie back in 2005 for $100,000, after taking out a mortgage on his real-life house.

Taking out a hundred grand to buy virtual property may have seemed like poor business sense, but Jacobs had a plan. He turned Club Neverdie into a must-visit destination, one that includes more than a dozen bio-domes, a night club, stadium and a mall, where other players flocked to spend real cash on virtual goods and services.

Jacobs was making around $200,000 in annual revenue, enough to comfortably support him and his family. Some might wonder why Jacobs didn’t instead start a real-life business like most others. Jacobs’ answer, “games made sense.” Club Neverdie was a “turnkey business” for him — besides dropping in from time to time to check on the property, the business largely ran itself and had no other employees besides himself.

(Video below: Jon NEVERDIE Jacobs—American Man)

Here’s how Entropia works:

Entropia uses a micropayment business model, in which players may buy in-game currency (PED – Project Entropia Dollars) with real money that can be redeemed back into real world funds at a fixed exchange rate.

This means that virtual items acquired within Entropia Universe have a real cash value, and a participant may, at any time, initiate a withdrawal of their accumulated PEDs back into real world currencies according to the fixed exchange rate, minus transaction fees, the minimum amount for a withdrawal is 1000 PED. As a result, revenue of the business is largely generated from activities within the virtual universe. As of 2009, the revenue model has proven to be sustainable and profitable.

Could this be a sign of things to come? Billions are already made from in-game purchases of virtual items that are little more than code, but with amounts like this being shelled out, we could see a bigger push toward virtual goods being worth real money. It doesn’t matter if it has no intrinsic value, if people believe it does, and are willing to pay for it, that’s all that really counts. You know, like the stock market.

Miru Kim | Nude Explorer

Miru Kim’s love of the new and unknown led her to investigate left-behind industrial spaces and photograph herself in the space, nude.

President Obama Checks Out Robots in Japan

President Obama took time out of the APEC Summit in Yokohama to meet with a few of Japan’s finest automatons and rode in a Yamaha personal transport device.

Below: Festo’s fluidic Airic arm with muscles.

AirPenguin, AirJelly and AquaJelly

Festo’s AirPenguin and AquaJelly glide through the air while the AquaJelly moves through water.

These autonomous self-regulating systems with collective behavior are powered by lithium-ion-polymer batteries. An AirPenquin was featured in William Gibson’s latest science fiction novel Zero History.

US Secretary of Transportation Considers Disabling Phones in Vehicles

Transportation Secretary Ray LaHood said using a cell phone while driving is so dangerous that devices (scramblers) may soon be installed in cars to forcibly stop drivers—and potentially anyone else in the vehicle—from using them.

The Transportation Department has launched the Faces Of Distracted Driving Campaign, a web series that features videos of people injured by distracted drivers.

In 2008, 5,870 people lost their lives and an estimated 515,000 people were injured in police-reported crashes in which at least one form of driver distraction was reported on the police crash report. Distracted driving comes in various forms, such as:
  • cell phone use
  • texting while driving
  • eating
  • drinking
  • talking with passengers
  • using in-vehicle technologies and portable electronic devices.
There are many reasons for distracted driving, including busy lifestyles, stressful jobs, and the presence of children and pets in the car. Many people use technology such as cell phones, Blackberrys, and other electronic devices as their main means of communication. They forget to put these devices down when they should be paying the closest attention to their driving for the sake of their own safety and that of others.

Below: 13-year-old Margay Schee was riding home from school when a semi-truck slammed into the back of her school bus. She was killed when rescuers were unable to get her out of the burning wreckage.