Links for 26th February 2009

Fresh from the clogged tubes of teh intarwubs…

  1. 10 Steps To The Perfect Portfolio Website

    Good tips and inspiration from Smashing Mag, as always.

    Tagged with: businessportfoliowebsitedesigntipsreferenceinspirationgallery

  2. Droughts ‘may lay waste’ to parts of US

    "The warnings were the first time Congress had been directly confronted with the growing evidence that the impact of climate change will be far more severe than revealed even in the UN's most recent report, in 2007. The hearing was also the first time senators had been permitted to hear testimony about the dangers to human health from climate change. In 2007, the Bush administration censored testimony from the Centres for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) on the rise in asthma and other respiratory illnesses, as well as the increasing occurrence of "tropical" parasites."

    Tagged with: climatechangeenvironmentdroughtUSagriculturewaterfaminesustainability

  3. ‘Dirty’ will be scrubbed from the English dictionary

    "The oldest words in the language, such as "I", "we" and the numbers one, two and three, have barely changed over the past 9,000 years, probably because they are so fundamental to everyday communication. The most resilient words were found to be those that are used most frequently, but are also likely to be nouns or numerals.

    Other types of words, such as adjectives and adverbs, evolve more quickly, making them susceptible to dying out and being replaced. Half of the words we use today would be unrecognisable to our ancestors 2,500 years ago." Language is cool.

    Tagged with: languagelinguisticsevolutionchange

  4. You shouldn’t have to sell your soul just to download some music

    "So now the pitch goes: "We gave you what you asked for, you've brought us to our knees. Now, please stop ripping us off and start buying music again – we're offering a fair deal." But anyone who examines the pitch closely can see it for what it really is: just more bait for yet another trap. It's that pesky user-agreement. When you go into one of the few remaining record stores, there's no clerk beside the till chanting, "By buying this music, you agree to the following terms and conditions," rattling off an inexhaustible set of rights that you're surrendering for having the temerity to buy your music instead of ripping it off." Doctorow.

    Tagged with: musiccopyrightdigitalintellectualpropertydownloadindustryrecordlabels

  5. How to survive the coming century – environment – 25 February 2009 – New Scientist

    "If we allow 20 square metres of space per person – more than double the minimum habitable space allowed per person under English planning regulations – 9 million people would need 18,000 square kilometres of land to live on. The area of Canada alone is 9.1 million square kilometres and, combined with all the other high-latitude areas, such as Alaska, Britain, Russia and Scandinavia, there should be plenty of room for everyone, even with the effects of sea-level rise. These precious lands with access to water would be valuable food-growing areas, as well as the last oases for many species, so people would be need to be housed in compact, high-rise cities. Living this closely together will bring problems of its own. Disease could easily spread through the crowded population so early warning systems will be needed to monitor any outbreaks." Happy-happy joy-joy.

    Tagged with: climateenvironmentsustainabilitymass-migrationarkchangeplanetdoom

  6. Hacking the planet: The only climate solution left?

    "The obvious choice would be for the UN to regulate geoengineering. However, when New Scientist enquired, the UN Framework Convention on Climate Change was unable to comment. According to Joan Ruddock, a UK minister serving in the Department of Energy and Climate Change, a powerful UN treaty on geoengineering in the wake of failed emissions talks is unlikely. "If we have entirely failed to bring the world community together to do the rather simpler things which we already understand very well," she says, then devising a geoengineering agreement would be even more difficult." Your cheery read for the week.

    Tagged with: geoengineeringclimateenvironmenthackingsolutionspoliticsdiplomacy

  7. The Stress Test

    "One useful way to look at D2 (the current global depression) is to view it as a stress test for nation-states. In other words: can nation-states adapt successfully to the twin pressures of the new global environment?" By abandoning many of the standard traits of nation-states, basically.

    Tagged with: governmentnation-statesdepressionpoliticsguerillainsurgencynetworksglobalism

  8. Obama Budget Includes Funding Boost for NASA

    "The budget calls on NASA to complete International Space Station construction, as well as continue its Earth science missions and aviation research. Yet it also remains fixed to former President George W. Bush's plan to retire the space shuttle fleet by 2010 and replace them with the new Orion Crew Exploration Vehicle, which would fly astronauts to the space station and return them to the moon by 2020. " $19billion seems like peanuts next to the bailout, doesn't it?

    Tagged with: usnasabudgetfundingObamamoonspaceexploration

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