Category: Technology

Technologies I find significant, good or bad.

Eco-Friendly Bio-Plastics

February 2, 2004 Off

Courtesy of Kirsty, a report of a plastic and clay composite which reduces hydro-carbon use. Also, use of feathers in plastic production has recently been reported. While we shouldn’t need further animal products to replace wood fibre use, clearly other fibre products could offer similar benefits, particularly hardy fibres such as hemp and flax.

By leigh

Vegan Boots

January 29, 2004 Off

Being vegan, when I finally retired a pair of 8 year old Doc Martens, I was on the lookout for an alternative to leather. Materials science has progressed to the point that we no longer need to use animals for our clothing needs. Neither do we need petrochemicals for plastics; Henry Ford built a plastic…

By leigh

Plants that detect landmines

January 29, 2004 Off

Wired has an article on a fascinating approach to landmine detection. The plant is genetically modified to react to nitrogen dioxide emitted into the soil by immediate vicinity landmines, thereby indicating their location. Hopefully such an approach lives up to it’s promise. This would not seem to address unexploded cluster bombs, which unlike landmines, are…

By leigh

Outsourcing, Monopolisation, Stagnation

January 27, 2004 Off

U.S. technology pundits, analysts and political commentators have understandably lamented the outsourcing issue, that is, the rapid transfer of technology jobs to countries such as China and India. As Robert Cringley noted, the technology industry was the last U.S. industry left that had trade surpluses. If this industry does truly transfer it’s main centre of…

By leigh

My, there are many bugs in the system…

January 23, 2004 Off

Clearly bugs are the toys d’annee for the Bush administration. First it (using the National Security Agency) partakes in bugging the offices and homes of diplomats of six undecided countries on the U.N security council as it was trying to push through it’s illegal invasion of Iraq. When Katherine Gun blew the whistle on this,…

By leigh

My dream laptop

January 21, 2004 Off

I use an Apple 2001 vintage G4 Powerbook about 15 hours a day. It’s great, but looking forward, here’s my realisable dream machine: Dual processor 2GHz G5s. 4Gb flash memory for the operating system. 802.11g (54Mbps) WiFi with wide spread coverage. No hard disk! Uses a distributed secure file sharing protocol, perhaps the Andrew File…

By leigh

My daily news sites

January 18, 2004 Off

I’ve been checking Juan Coles blog a professor of Middle East history who speaks Urdu, Arabic and other middle east languages. He has some very informed commentary, particularly his monitoring of Arabic news sources.

By leigh

The Presidents Space Program

January 15, 2004 Off

I support astronomical exploration but it is very clear that the idea of sending humans back into space as proposed by Bush yesterday is fundamentally flawed. It turns out the Bush administration has been in talks with Halliburton, Shell, and Baker Hughes among others about the provision of space exploration. There is considerable argument that…

By leigh