A billion-year storage medium that could outlive the human race A QR code etched in tungsten and embedded in graphene oxide on an optical disc Credit: University of Twente) Researcher Dr. Jeroen de Vries from the University of Twente MESA+ Institute for Nanotechnology suggests we could store data for one million to one billion years, using a new storage medium based on tungsten and graphene oxide. He imagines two possible scenarios: Disaster has devastated the earth and society must rebuild the worldWe need to create a legacy for future intelligent life that evolves on Earth or comes from other worlds. Optical-disc information carrier de Vries has developed a novel optical-disc information carrier that he says can store such information for extremely long periods of time, using etching techniques. Left: scanning electron micrograph of the cross-section of the encapsulated lines in the disc test sample; right: scanning electron micrograph of the sample after 1 hour at 200 degrees Celsius (credit: Jeroen de Vries et al. The ultimate aging test References:
Money is Not Wealth This is a guest post by Greg Linster, a graduate student studying economics at the University of Denver. He blogs at Coffee Theory about things philosophical and shares aphorisms (almost daily) at Aphoristic Cocktails. The father of modern economics, Adam Smith, once wrote: "All money is a matter of belief." The question I want to pose (and hopefully answer in this article), then, is: Should we believe? Since Kent’s blog is called The Financial Philosopher and since I'm an economics graduate student with a philosophical proclivity, it seems only fitting that I attempt to tackle a philosophical question about the nature of money. Most of us wake up in the morning and go to a place called 'work' in order to earn money. It seems fairly obvious that most of us would prefer to have more money as opposed to less. As such, I think most of us, when we say we want money, really mean that we want wealth. What's interesting to note is that you can be wealthy without having money. Notes: Related:
Rosner and Markowitz, Your Body Is a Corporate Test Tube Just over three years ago, an explosion on the Deepwater Horizon oil rig leased by BP killed 11 people, injured 17, and -- according to government estimates -- polluted the Gulf of Mexico with 210 million gallons of Louisiana sweet crude. It turns out, however, that the casualty toll didn’t end with those 28 workers. The real number may reach into the thousands. Last year, BP pled guilty to 14 felonies stemming from the disaster, including misleading Congress about the amount of oil that gushed into the gulf. Writing for Newsweek and with the support of the Nation Institute’s Investigative Fund, Mark Hertsgaard recently laid bare how Corexit was utilized and the dire effects it apparently had on the men and women who worked to “clean” the gulf in the wake of BP’s historically unprecedented spill. Hundreds, perhaps, thousands of other workers were exposed to the same chemicals, including those who were coated in a mist of Corexit, since almost 60% of it was sprayed out of airplanes.
Susan George: poteri occulti, la Terra è sotto scacco Se avete a cuore il vostro cibo, la vostra salute e la stessa sicurezza finanziaria, la vostra e quella della vostra famiglia, così come le tasse che pagate, lo stato del pianeta e della stessa democrazia, ci sono pessime notizie: un gruppo di golpisti ha preso il potere e ormai domina il pianeta. Legalmente: perché le nuove leggi che imbrigliano i popoli, i governi e gli Stati se le sono fatte loro, per servire i loro smisurati interessi, piegando le democrazie con l’aiuto di “maggiordomi” travestiti da politici. La grande novità si chiama: “ascesa di autorità illegittima”. Parola di Susan George, notissima sociologa franco-statunitense, già impegnata nel movimento no-global e al vertice di associazioni mondiali come Greenpeace. I nuovi oligarchi, spiega la George nell’intervento pronunciato al Festival Internazionale di Ferrara, ottobre 2013, possono agire attraverso le lobby o oscuri “comitati di esperti”, attraverso organismi ad hoc che ottengono riconoscimenti ufficiali.
Emperors, clothes, money BBC Radio 4′s documentary series Analysis has a fascinating programme that explores the little-asked question ‘What is Money?’ – and the answer turns out to be scarily psychological. In fact, the definition is very close to William Gibson’s description of cyberspace as a “mass consensual hallucination” because money relies on us to believe in it for it to work. In other words, it’s largely a social concept we all sign up to and this episode of Analysis looks at the economics of how (or rather how not) money is tied to actual goods and services in the world and what this means in times of financial crisis. It also turns out that the BBC are now linking to podcasts directly from the programme pages so even though we live our lives in the grip of a self-imposed imaginary power at least the Radio 4 website is now easier to use. Link to Analysis episode ‘What is Money?’
Report: Wealthy Thrive and Poorest Dive as Surge in US Inequality Continues The great wealth divide in the United States has only become more exacerbated since the recession, as national policies have buoyed only the wealthiest Americans while the remainder have been left adrift. According to a new analysis (pdf) of Census Bureau data published Tuesday by the Pew Research Center, since the economy officially emerged from the recession in mid-2009, the wealthiest 7 percent of households saw soaring gains of an estimated $5.6 trillion, while the remaining 93 percent—111 million households—saw their overall wealth fall by an estimated $0.6 trillion. “It has been a very good recovery for those at the upper end of the wealth distribution,” said Paul Taylor, executive vice president of the Pew Research Center and co-author of the report. “But there has been no recovery for the lower 93, which is nearly everybody.” Though hailed as a success by many, this pattern of the rich getting richer was predominantly fueled by the stock market rallies during that period.
The lies behind this transatlantic trade deal | George Monbiot Panic spreads through the European commission like ferrets in a rabbit warren. Its plans to create a single market incorporating Europe and the United States, progressing so nicely when hardly anyone knew, have been blown wide open. All over Europe people are asking why this is happening; why we were not consulted; for whom it is being done. They have good reason to ask. The commission insists that its Transatlantic Trade and Investment Partnership should include a toxic mechanism called investor-state dispute settlement. Where this has been forced into other trade agreements, it has allowed big corporations to sue governments before secretive arbitration panels composed of corporate lawyers, which bypass domestic courts and override the will of parliaments. This mechanism could threaten almost any means by which governments might seek to defend their citizens or protect the natural world. So where are our elected representatives? Quite right too.
A Living Wealth Money System | New Economy Working Group Agenda: Root the power to create and allocate official money in democratically governed communities. The New Economy Money Story University economics courses teach that money is a medium of exchange, which is correct, and a storehouse of value, which may work for an individual but is a fiction for society. A society can store wealth only in real physical, social, and natural capital. To truly understand money, it is necessary to understand it as a system of power, an accounting entry, a measure of value, and phantom wealth. From Caring Relationships to Market Exchange In the earliest human societies, money was unknown. Over several millennia, money gradually became a substitute for mutual caring as the foundation of the social, economic, and political fabric of society. In contemporary 21st century societies, most of us now organize our lives around earning, spending, borrowing, and saving money. A Matter of Values and Power Democratizing Money