“Was not their mistake once more bred of the life of slavery that they had been living?—a life which was always looking upon everything, except mankind, animate and inanimate—‘nature,’ as people used to call it—as one thing, and mankind as another, it was natural to people thinking in this way, that they should try to make ‘nature’ their slave, since they thought ‘nature’ was something outside them” — William Morris

Sunday, June 14, 2009

Finishing ET

Yes I'm putting the finishing touches to what I now think of as ET, The Ecological Thought (which if you read it is a good-ish joke). I'm excited—more than with previous projects, I think just because I put a lot of er, thought into it up to the last minute. Finishing a book is like playing with Play-Doh: you push some more in, smooth it down, take a look, push a bit more in, tear some out, smooth it down, take a look ...

Monday, June 8, 2009

Viroids and retroviruses

Two corrections to a video I posted on YouTube ("The Mesh"):

1) The essay on ERV-3 (the retrovirus that may code for immunosuppressive properties of the plactental barrier) is 16 years old (not 30).

2) I meant to say "viroids" not "virions"—a virion is an infective viral particle. A viroid is a small circle of RNA that probably dates all the way back to RNA world.


Coming next: There's No Place Like Home (my review of the latest eco-sermon).

Saturday, June 6, 2009

Ready, offset, go

Yay—the solar system has just offset the equivalent of two mature trees' worth of carbon.

That'll make up for the one mature redwood that was struck by lightning about five doors down from us. The lightning boiled all the water and sap in the tree and we woke up to the sound of it exploding and evaporating. Then we were strafed by two waves of electromagnetism, turning the fuse-blown lights back on once, then twice. There were 6" or so shards of tree everywhere.

That'll teach me to change my graphic to a field ion microscope image of a tungsten atom...looks like a slice of fruit, no? Anyone else see the fractal pattern? Some of the early atom photos were psychedelically tinted (do a Google Images search). They look so much nicer than the nubbly rubbery stubs generated by the scanning tunneling microscopes, no? Less materialistic...more like waves...

Wednesday, June 3, 2009

Waste of Time

Head on over to Wired magazine and see time-lapse movies of the Earth literally disappearing under our feet. It's doesn't get any more ecological-without-nature than this...

Here's a view of Amazon deforestation.

Another EwN triumph for Google Earth-type technology (see my previous) — in this case, the NASA Earth Observatory.