Project Quipu: Integrated Economic Atlas for the 21st Century

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. . . Introduction

Examining the manner in which financial news is reported in the popular media, HotSpring proposes to create a system whereby live-update, rss-technology, and financial and editorial expertise, come together to produce a reliable up-to-the-minute resource for evaluating broad economic trends and engagements, without limiting analysis to single-parameter references like GDP or individual stock indices.

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Water Resource Stress: Global Economic-Ecological Factor for the 21st Century

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more than 1 billion people already face fresh water scarcity;
figure expected to double in 20 years’ time

Water is one of the “fundamental building-blocks of life”, as is often said in science, in biology classrooms, in medicine, theology, environmental policy debates, and in cosmology and space exploration. It is also a commodity whose economic reality is increasingly defined by chronic scarcity and often intensely uneven distribution.

One of the most vital problems regarding the global water supply is the fact that we are already over-exploiting it, draining vital fluvial systems and ancient underground aquifers that cannot be replenished. This, coupled with the population boom and increasing industrialization, urbanization and consumerization of emerging economies, means global scarcity is fast becoming the rule.

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Something of This World

As a blue-fire sun came up over the sea, milky and iridescent, there was no sound, there were no motorized noises, the world was sleeping and nothing moved but the water and the sun. The time was not important, but the thick of atmosphere and the damp of unknowing was. Jitters at the cold of morning. Trembling at what could not be said. Lydia moved to make something fluid of her anxiety. Always.

She wanted to be known as someone who knew herself well and was comfortable with that, because she did and she was, but she was never comfortable with the capacity of other people to see these aspects of herself clearly. Too much at stake, she would say. One came to think: too much at stake to take a chance on being misunderstood.  But why?  Why at every moment was so much at stake? I loved this way of concentrating universal truths and global risk into the idea of what another might hear.

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Faultlines are Lifegivers

elindulnék :: Intense heat, the suffocation of the great metropolis that stingily carries on not recognizing that it was made by human hands and minds for the benefit of human beings in their endless daily slog…

tiresome, choking, trellised, the city-creature, the layered amplitude, the hard grace and threadbare unbecoming, the will at odds with its own purpose… 

I want wholeness amid the grey and acquiescent stupor, I want rhythm amid the fine-boned dissonance, a special coven of mind-meld and revelers, and the agility and courage to make sense of things…

but time runs out, it disappears into the gloom and is scarce remembered as what it was, a cool rapid current of trilling waters, trailing over the edge of things, and never stopping to be taken, held or tasted…

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Contraluz : un estudio en luz, sombra, forma y metáfora

Una colección de fotos, de ambiente, de textura, de la materia prima sensual de la vida de cada día, Contraluz explora el potencial de acercarse a los significados escondidos a través del proceso de mirar. Este libro es una antología de las obras fotográficas del autor Joseph Robertson, plasmadas en cálidos matices dúo-tonales, buscando el momento del gesto, el reflejo de la luz, la forma de las varias nadas que se juntan para hacer un tejido de pedagogía espiritual y complejidad animal, en el foro de lo cotidiano. La diversidad de la geografía, ante los procesos minúsculos de pasar de un instante a otro, de un mundo a otro, de un sueño a otro, convencido de que tiene que haber detrás algunas verdades incorruptas…

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Dejeuner sur l’herbe : Hampstead Heath, London

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World’s Languages Disappearing at Alarming Rate: 3,000 Soon Extinct

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Rare words BBC reports may disappear with dying languages: see “In defence of ‘lost’ languages”

  • Coghal — big lump of dead flesh after a wound is opened (Manx)
  • Tkhetsikhe’tenhawihtennihs — I am bringing sugar to somebody (Mohawk: Canada and USA)
  • Puijilittatuq — he does not know which way to turn because of the many seals he has seen come to the ice surface (Inuktitut: Canadian Arctic)
  • Tl’imshya’isita’itlma — he invites people to a feast (Nootka: Canada)
  • Onsra — to love for the last time (Boro: NE India and Bangladesh)
  • Sjonvarp — television (Faroese: a language in good health)
  • Nartutaka — small plum-like fruit for which there is no English word (Wangkajunga: central Australia)
  • Th’alatel — a device for the heart (Halkomelem: Canada)

HALF OF ALL KNOWN LANGUAGES MAY DISAPPEAR BY 2100, MORE THAN 3,000 CULTURES LOST

The world’s three most widely-spoken languages, English, Spanish and Mandarin, each enjoy more than 450 million speakers worldwide. These languages are increasingly useful for international business and for diplomacy in an interconnected global society. But languages with fewer than 10 million speakers are now considered “minor” and many long-standing cultures are in danger of disappearing, as only a handful of people remain who can speak them.

In North America, there are now only half the number of indigenous languages spoken as there were 500 years ago, when Europeans began to settle permanently. There are 329 distinct languages spoken in the United States, roughly half indigenous, and yet radical conservatives intent on halting immigration are trying to establish English as the single language in which people are allowed to communicate with their government. Of the 3 major dialects of Lenape, once spoken widely by pre-colonial tribes throughout modern New Jersey, Delaware, New York and Connecticut, only one remains. It is now spoken almost exclusively on reservations in Oklahoma and Ontario, and is largely forgotten by the two youngest generations descended from the Lenape tribes.

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A Bubble too Far

Property pricing boom is putting pressure on entire world economy LONDON — In the summer of 2005, the Economist magazine led with a story entitled “After the Fall”. The article discussed in detail the problems inherent in what appears to be the most expansive boom real estate has seen since records began, and of all markets … Continue reading A Bubble too Far

Not All Politics is Opinion

in defense of the right to report one party’s misdeeds without including, comparing or degrading another party’s activities

Shortly after publishing yesterday’s lead story, referring to a speech by former US vice president Al Gore as a “non-partisan” event, I received a complaint from a Bush supporter, upset by the “partisan” nature of such a report. I took the complaint to heart, and examined the article and the context, in an effort to ensure that Sentido’s open, but principled news reporting not be categorized as having a political agenda.

What I believe is the underlying problem in this situation is that the reader who wrote the complaint simply believed that 1) anything Al Gore says must be classified as partisan, and 2) references to questions about the validity or legality of acts by a politician he supports must be classified as opinion, and so cannot stand as fact.

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Arctic Ice Melt will Soon Open North Pole Shipping

businesses & nations rally to locate & divide new resources

As ice melts across the arctic north, and the Arctic Ocean opens up in summer months, the mythic Northwest Passage is expected to open to regular shipping, and Russia’s Northern Sea Route is expected to rival it in global trade traffic, within a generation. It is also expected the Arctic Ocean will be completely without ice in warm months by the end of the 21st century.

Even as ecologists warn of the collapse of polar ecosystems and the extinction threat to polar bears and other species, and indigenous peoples fear the degradation of their traditional hunting grounds, infrastructure and ways of life, businesses and governments are planning to claim their share of the open ocean.

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Data Shadows & Improbable Consent

new trends in ‘compulsory voluntarism’ raise the spectre of ‘consenting’ to infringed liberties against one’s will

A contract is legally binding only when: all signatories freely and voluntarily agree to its provisions; all provisions are themselves legal; none of the provisions is inherently unreasonable or deceptively worded. Neither contracts nor “terms and conditions” including indemnities disclaimers, can be classified as legislation. They do not make or construct legal limits by themselves.

Obvious as this may seem, it is a necessary introduction to the problem of the trade in personal information and “soft surveillance”. Another vital piece of information is the Fourth Amendment to the US Constitution, which ensures “The right of the people to be secure in their persons, houses, papers and effects” and that such barriers cannot be breached except by judicial warrant, brought after providing evidence of “probable cause”.

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