International Fusion Reactor Consortium
November 25, 2006, 1:19 pm
Filed under: Energy, Fusion, Nuclear

New Scientist report that representatives from China, the European Union, India, Japan, Russia, South Korea and the United States signed a pact to build a fusion reactor. The EU will put up 50% of the cost and the reactor will be built in Cardache in Southern France. Continue reading


YouTube for Biologists
November 25, 2006, 11:31 am
Filed under: Network-knowledge, Philosophy of Science, Scientific Method

The New Scientist Technology Blog report that a new Web site, the Journal of Visualized Experiments, allows scientists to upload videos of experimental practice. The site is designed to help overcome the difficulties encountered learning scientific practice which can often involve a lot of tacit knowledge. Although it is already possible to upload such videos to YouTube and Google these sites offer none of the advantages of specialised, peer-reviewed filters on content.

Threat to Chinese Economy From Climate Change
November 24, 2006, 9:15 am
Filed under: Environment, Strategic

A report from a Hong Kong based think-tank decribes the threat to industry on the Pearl River Delta and in Hong Kong posed by increases in flooding and typhoons associated with climate change. The report also highlights the knock-on effects of damage to this region for global trade. [source:BBC]

We could yet see the Chinese government volunteering cuts in Greenhouse gas emissions and thereby removing the biggest bar to emissions restrictions for the largest liberal economies. If the perception of immediate risk from climate change overwhelms debates about fair competition then the current bars to international cooperation could be removed.

Antikythera Mechanism Decoded
November 24, 2006, 1:40 am
Filed under: Ancient-Tech, Astronomy

The most complex surviving mechanism from antiquity, the Antikythera Mechanism, is reported to have had its remaining mysteries explained. Continue reading

“Rods From God” Anti-Satellite Weapons Update
November 23, 2006, 3:09 pm
Filed under: Space, Strategic

Jane’s Defence Weekly reported on 16th October that command Sergeant Major David Lady of the Joint Functional Combat Command for Integrated Missile Defense had confirmed the detection of anti – US satellite lasers over China: Continue reading

RFID and CMB Vulnerabilities
November 19, 2006, 8:23 pm
Filed under: Info-Comms, Information Tech, Security, Surveillance

After the Guardian’s exposure of the insecurity of British passport RFID and the marketing of RFID blocking wallets (thanks to Blogzilla for this link), here is a set of resources from Roger Johnson’s Vulnerability Assessment Team at Los Alamos.
Light Blue Touchpaper has archived a set of papers from the Los Alamos lab since they can be difficult to access outside the US.

The Earliest Modular Capsule Architecture
November 19, 2006, 7:22 pm
Filed under: Architecture, Environment, Tokyo

This wonderful building, the Nakagin Capsule Tower, was designed by Kisho Kurokawa in 1970-1972 and built in the Ginza district of Tokyo. See Dork Magazine, and arcspace for more information including interior photos. [Source: Maximalism] Continue reading