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Archive for February 14th, 2008

I just realized that I never posted the finished Jerusalem-at-night picture on the blog. Anyway, here it is. You can see the “full-sized” version here

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I saw this cool idea on Guy Kawasaki’s blog. Getting clean water is a big problem in developing countries. Streams are not always clean, carrying the water is hard and the villagers don’t have the resources to run a pump to get at the ground water. PlayPumps is a simple idea of connecting a children’s carousel to a water pump and providing water for a whole village as the children play.

I recently saw an article on a device to create electricty as you walk. My first thought was how daft this contracption would look strapped to my leg. I think that pumping water as you play is definitely cooler. It has me thinking… could we power our neighbourhood from the swingset in the local park?

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Yoyo blogged about “Running the Numbers An American Self-Portrait” photos of American consumerism by Chris Jordan. It is quite mind boggling to consider that  2,000,000 plastic beverage bottles are used in the US every five minutes or that 426,000 cell phones are retired in the US every day.

After viewing a few of the images, it does get a bit laborious (my son said “he must be one bored person”), but they do bring home the message. They also remind me a bit of the Paper Clips Project in which kids in a school in Tenessee collectected paper clips to represent the number of people killed in the Holocaust.

Chris writes in his artist’s statement that consumerism is a “seductive kind of mob mentality” to take and consume and keep up. He posits that “in this process we are doing irreparable harm to our planet and to our individual spirits”. This is what I was saying in my “Consuming Culture” post as well.

To go off on a Jewish tangent – this is part of what being an Ivri (Hebrew, but also meaning “one who stands on the other side”) should be about today.

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