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Figures & Facts
Instead Of building another costly Berlin Wall
(which has been pulled down anyway),
"Let’s Build a Border Of Solar Panels"!
(What a brilliant idea, so constructive in every measure!!)
It would attract investment, create jobs and neighborly neighbors
(How wise, and no waste – imagine a gigantic smile on Earth!).
Dec 19, 2016
Instead of another Berlin Wall, Instead Of Trump’s Wall, Let’s Build A Border Of Solar Panels President-elect Donald Trump has repeatedly called for Mexico to build a wall between our countries. There is indeed a way that Mexico could create a barrier between the U.S. and Mexico, one constructed exclusively on the Mexican side, with substantial benefits for both countries and the planet: a solar border.
Sunlight in the northern deserts of Mexico is more intense than in the U.S. Southwest because of the lower latitude and more favorable cloud patterns. And construction and maintenance costs for solar plants in Mexico are substantially lower. Thus, building a long series of such plants all along the Mexican side of the border could power cities on both sides faster and more cheaply than similar arrays built north of the border. read more »
86 years ago, 1931. Thomas Edison: "I'd put my money on the sun and solar energy. What a source of power!"
In 1931, not long before he died, the inventor told his friends Henry Ford and Harvey Firestone: I’d put my money on the sun and solar energy. What a source of power! I hope we don’t have to wait until oil and coal run out before we tackle that.
Again and Again. Volunteers risk own lives standing between ocean mammals and Japanese whaling fleet
09 March 2017
Once again, our ships are all that stands between the whales and the Japanese whaling fleet.
Whale rescue ships at sea for 93 days (Ocean Warrior) and 90 days (the Steve Irwin)
Keeping Japanese whale butcher fleet (in the name of "research") on the move - whenever we got near the harpoon vessels or found discarded whale blubber in the sea that indicated we were close to where recent kills occurred (and therefore near the fleet), the factory ship simply took off full speed in the opposite direction. The Steve Irwin was shadowed by the Yushin Maru 3, thus taking one of the harpoon vessels out of action for 36 days. This year has taught us that we need to do more if we’re going to stop the whale poachers next season. We are a grassroots NGO fighting a war against the Japanese-government funded whaling fleet.
We rely on donations and volunteers, while they spend millions to sustain this slaughter for the non-existent demand for whale meat over a decade.
Antarctic waters, Southern Ocean Whale Sanctuary -
On December 3rd Sea Shepherd embarked on its 11th Antarctic whale defense campaign.
Once again, our ships are all that stands between the whales and the Japanese whaling fleet. Ocean mammals need help to be defended.
Photo courtesy Sea Shepherd Global / Simon Ager , Glenn Lockitch
Carnival is a Western Christian festive season that occurs before the liturgical season of Lent. The main events typically occur during February or early March, during the period historically known as Shrovetide (or Pre-Lent). Carnival typically involves a public celebration and/or parade combining some elements of a circus, masks, and a public street party. People wear masks and costumes during many such celebrations, allowing them to lose their everyday individuality and experience a heightened sense of social unity. Excessive consumption of alcohol, meat, and other foods proscribed during Lent is extremely common. Other common features of carnival include mock battles such as food fights; social satire and mockery of authorities; and a general reversal of everyday rules and norms. read more »
Outbluffed: Machine beats humans first time in poker, the last remaining game where humans had managed to maintain upper hand
Libratus, an AI built by Carnegie Mellon University racked up over $1.7 million worth of chips against four of the top professional poker players in the world in a 20-day marathon poker tournament that ended on Tuesday in Philadelphia.
While machines have beaten humans over the last two decade in chess, checkers, and most recently in the ancient game of Go, Libratus' victory is significant because poker is an imperfect information game - similar to the real world where not all problems are laid out and the difficulty in figuring out human behaviour is one of the main reasons why it was considered immune to machines.
One of the main reasons for Libratus' victory was the machine's ability outbluff humans.
"The computer can't win at poker if it can't bluff," said Frank Pfenning, head of the Computer Science Department at CMU.
"Developing an AI that can do that successfully is a tremendous step forward scientifically and has numerous applications. Imagine that your smartphone will someday be able to negotiate the best price on a new car for you. That's just the beginning."
Dong Kim, one of the four top poker players who participated in the tournament echoed the statement. The 28-year old, originally from Seattle, had also participated in a similar poker tournament with another AI machine built by CMU in 2015 named Claudico.
"It was about half way through the challenge (with Libratus when) I knew we wouldn't come back," said Kim. read more »
UK Prime Minister Theresa May wishes all a very happy and healthy Lunar New Year, 2017 Year of Rooster
27 January, 2017
"As the lanterns are lit and the dumplings are served, let me wish you and your family, wherever you are, a very happy and healthy New Year,” she said, before concluding her message in Chinese: "Xin Nian Kuai Le (Happy New Year)"
British Prime Minister Theresa May on Thursday sent her wishes through the government’s website and her own Weibo account to those who celebrate Chinese Lunar New Year worldwide, pledging to further strengthen China-UK relations.
May said the Year of the Rooster is set to be particularly important for the relationship between Britain and China, because the starting point for bilateral relations is stronger than ever before.
Recalling the historic state visit of President Xi Jinping in October 2015, she said the two countries are seeing an increasing development of their relations. "We receive more Chinese investment than any other major European country. We’ve got around 150,000 Chinese students studying here and the number of Chinese tourists visiting has doubled in five years," May said. read more »
26 January, 2017
"Britain and America will no longer invade foreign countries 'to make the world in their own image'" - Theresa May. Britain and America will never again invade foreign countries “in an attempt to make the world in their own image”, Theresa May has said in the biggest shift in UK foreign policy for more than 20 years.
Addressing US Republican politicians in Philadelphia, the Prime Minister pledged not to repeat the “failed policies of the past” in a clear reference to the invasions of Iraq and Afghanistan by Tony Blair and George W Bush.
And she hailed Mr Trump's election as "dawn breaking on a new era of American renewal".
She told Republicans: “I speak to you not just as Prime Minister of the United Kingdom, but as a fellow Conservative who believes in the same principles that underpin the agenda of your Party.
“The value of liberty. The dignity of work. The principles of nationhood, family, economic prudence, patriotism – and putting power in the hands of the people.
“Principles instilled in me from a young age. Principles that my parents taught me in the vicarage in Southern England in which I was raised.
“I know that it is these principles that you have put at the heart of your plan for government. “ read more »
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