Archive for the 'World' Tag

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History: Niall Ferguson – The 6 killer apps of prosperity

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We finally found some time to watch Niall Ferguson’s Ted Talks presentation with the “killer applications” he also describes in his latest book “Civilization The West and the Rest”

Niall Ferguson starts his presentation outlining his playing field, pointing us to the facts that more than 106 billion people have walked this planet and 94% of those are already dead. Out of those 106 billion 60% were or are Asian and most of them were or are very poor (shortening their life span / economic output). He then bridges over to explain the concept of the “Great Divergence“, that the majority of today’s wealth (US$195 Trillion) was made after 1800 by so-called Westerners and till today 66% of the world’s wealth is owned by these Europeans, North-Americans and Austral-Asians that only make up 19% of the world’s population…

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Christmas: Adeste fidelis – Venite Adoremus

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Adeste Fideles laeti triumphantes,
Veníte, veníte in Bethlehem.
Natum vidéte, Regem Angelorum:
Veníte adoremus,
Veníte adoremus
Veníte adoremus Dóminum

While the “fidelis” this year like in the years before merely get some kind of fair ground in Bethlehem – if they are allowed to go there with specially arranged package travel or diplomatic passports – one thing is different from the days this song and its lyrics have been composed.

While the shepherds around Bethlehem still speak a language that today is called Arabic (or some local dialects) there would be no “…En grege relicto, Humiles ad cunas Vocati pastores approperant …” (translated in the English version as: See how the shepherds, Summoned to His cradle, Leaving their flocks, draw nigh with lowly fear) –
there are guys with machine guns and tanks hindering the shepherds to even get close to the cradle – so Christmas would not happen these days again.

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Life: The role of the state to impact morality

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This video is out of a series of short videos starting with “How to Live a Meaningful Life” up to “Reflects on Goodness” all of them interviews by the great BigThink web site with U.C. Berkeley social psychologist Dacher Keltner.

If you interested in Professor Keltner’s work and that of his colleagues at the…

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Data-Visualization: The Known Universe by AMNH

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…The Known Universe takes viewers from the Himalayas through our atmosphere and the inky black of space to the afterglow of the Big Bang. Every star, planet, and quasar seen in the film is possible because of the world’s most complete four-dimensional map of the universe, the Digital Universe Atlas that is maintained and updated by astrophysicists at the American Museum of Natural History…

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Climate Change: Germanwatch presents Global Climate Risk Index 2010

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The climate and development organization Germanwatch has today published its Global Climate Risk Index 2010. The Global Climate Risk Index analyzes to what extent countries have been affected by the impacts of weather-related loss events (storms, floods, heatwaves etc.).

The Global Climate Risk Index (CRI) developed by Germanwatch analyzes the quantified impacts of extreme weather events in terms of people that have died from them, as well as economic losses that occurred. It is based on data from Munich Re´s Nat-CatSERVICE® which is one of the most reliable and complete data bases on this matter. While it does not take into account aspects such as sea-level rise or glacier melting, climate change is an increasingly important factor for the occurrence and intensity of these events. The CRI can therefore provide an indication of levels of exposure and vulnerability to extreme events which countries should see as a warning signal to prepare for more severe events in the future. The fifth edition of the CRI looks particularly at the impacts of extreme weather events from 1990 up until the most recent available data – 2008…

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Climate Change: Hurricane ad from Ogilvy

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No comment – see the GreenPeace “I am sorry” campaign.

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