Economy is ecology? Technology Review writes the price of oil has dipped to levels that could be far too low for many advanced-biofuel startups to succeed, especially those that attracted investment this summer, while oil was well above $100 a barrel. Tight credit markets will also make it difficult for advanced biofuel companies to move ahead with plans for scaling up technologies and building commercial-scale production plants.
Image created by Lisa Oppenheim using images downloaded from the internet of sunsets taken by soldiers in Iraq, then positioned in front of the setting sun in New York.
Peculiar image of the week. Langley researcher Elton W. Miller stands poised in the Propeller Research Tunnel, as if pondering the future of aviation in this image from mid-1927. Image credit: Nasa.
In the Kenyan wildlife conservancy Ol Pejeta elephants are tagged with a GPS-triggered text messaging device. Before the elephants start raiding the nearby villagers’ harvest they send a text message to the rangers. The rangers respond by chasing the elephants off again. The tag also enables online elephant tracking through Google Earth for preservation concerns. How long will it take until the wildlife online identity will walk around in second life for safari tours? And people get killed on the internet by grumpy elephant bulls?
Not only elephants are tagged with GPS coordinates, also other wild animals can be tracked easily. So the safari experience comes with ‘wildlife guarantee’ these days. It seems that even Africa looses its adventurous nature. When will we drive with our landrovers through the stock-market hunting for broke speculators?
Within old nature one organism’s droppings becomes another organism’s food. This is a cycle that will continue going for ever and is vital for the old nature’s balance.
Nowadays within our major cities we can find this same cycle emerging in the form of Reverse Graffiti. With this art form one mans “droppings” becomes another mans art “food”.
Is this our way of keeping balance?
Set amid farmland in rural Japan, this small project is a bizarre hybrid of landscape art and infrastructure. It consists of a square, 20-space car park that looks as if it has been struck by an earthquake – its corners have been lifted into the air, its surface ripples and buckles and a great gash has been torn in its black asphalt surface.
Murata Boy, is a robot capable of riding bicycles unassisted. Balancing, pedaling and directing the bicyclee, turning the bike to avoid obstacles, etc.
Peculiar Image of the week. Via LA Times.
“(…) Previously, Monderman, like any good Dutch traffic engineer, would have deployed, if not an actual traffic light, the tools of what is known as “traffic calming”: speed bumps, warning signs, bollards, or any number of highly visible interventions.
Note that this is not an anti-American statement.
The paths of air traffic over North America visualized in color and form. Created by Aaron Koblin.
Ken Ohyama makes Japanese interchanges look like a beautiful forest. How about a picnic?
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The world’s first commercial merchant ship using a high-tech kite system will sail across oceans – and help fight climate change. “MV Beluga Skysails” cargo ship has been fitted with a giant kite, which is attached to a 15-metre high mast and guided by a computer. The kite helps the engines to power the ship, thereby reducing fuel consumption and cutting carbon dioxide emissions.
“Beluga Skysails” will make its maiden voyage from Germany to Venezuela and back in early 2008, and should it be successful, other shipping companies are keen on harnessing the technology.
Will the oil-driven car grow extinct in the decades to come? Guy Negre (Fr) thinks so, for he invented: THE CLEAN GREEN DRIVING MACHINE! Utopia is near; this (toy) car runs on AIR that can be ‘tanked’ by plugging it in at home, where a compressor fills it within four hours – or at a special air pump where this process will take only a few minutes. Even by pushing the brake, the car will use its energy to fill a minicompressor. The three air tanks will let you drive to 100 km/h = 62 mp/h. Of course there are other alternatives for the car – machines that run on solar power or on hydrogen, but the revolution was never this cheap: the Air Car will cost about 7.000 Euro / 9.500 Dollar. Let’s all breathe fresh air again and start freezing up those glaciers!
Oh yes, it’s a car alright! A High Speed Amphibian. Simply press a button and drive into the water. The wheels automatically rise and as you press the accelerator nearly a tonne of thrust pushes the Aquada onto the plane. The whole process takes less than 12 seconds. It can plane at over 30mph. And look at the positioning of the driver’s seat… the two babes on both sides must have fallen out OHW NO somebody warn this lonely millionair!!