Wednesday, August 22, 2012

Stuff I Found Here and There

National Geographic has a good article this month by Peter Miller: "Weather Gone Wild." Worth reading.


A report by the European Commission Directorate-General for Research and Innovation, assessing priorities for research in materials for energy technologies, has a section on the Fleischman & Pons
Effect -- viz. cold fusion. Apparently some in Europe are now practicing intellectual austerity in addition to financial austerity. (Via Joe Wells)


A recent article by George Will, "Apocalypse Not," crows about the failure of projections that we would be running out of some valuable commodities by now, like gold or aluminum or oil. Being George Will he uses this as a reason to bash climate projections, and being George Will he gets it completely wrong, as one commenter noted but now I can't find. The point is that people innovate and find more gold, oil, or whatever because those things have a value. Right now the atmosphere -- especially an atmosphere with a pre-industrial level of carbon dioxide -- has no value. It's a no-fee waste dump. If it is to prosper by innovation, that atmospheric state should be valued. If it were, people would apply their ingenuity and market tools to making more of it, and until it is valued, the only people doing that will be those directly supported by government funds or the extremely charitable and well-intentioned.

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