3 things you need to know about the farm bill

The much entrenched, long-delayed, massively complex farm bill passed Congress yesterday. President Obama is expected to sign the bill into law shortly. Under its umbrella, the farm bill sets policy for the next five years on issues as varied as food assistance for the needy, crop insurance for farmers, and environmental conservation. (more…)

Tesla sold a record 5,500 electric cars in the third quarter, turned a profit

tesla-roadster-electric-car-photo-00001.jpg.662x0_q100_crop-scaleSelling all it can make

It wasn't very long ago that Tesla was a tiny startup making only a few dozens of very expensive electric Roadsters (pictured above) per month. The strategy was always to start up-market and use that to bootstrap the next model which is cheaper and higher-volume, and so on until mass-market. (more…)

High Level of Arsenic in Rice May Cause Cancer

rice Arsenic is a naturally occurring substance found in the environment, sometimes in higher levels as a result of human activity. It is in the water, the air, soil and foods. In food, it may be present as inorganic arsenic, which is the most toxic form, or organic arsenic (which is considered harmless). Inorganic arsenic, which is the type found in some pesticides and insecticides, can be toxic and pose a cancer risk if consumed in high levels or over a long period of time. (more…)

This Pulsing Earth

It's breathing, he thought. "All of a sudden I see a thing with a heartbeat."

A Breathing EarthCredit: Courtesy of John Nelson/IDV Solutions

John Nelson is a designer, well known for tracing complex weather patterns or cultural information on maps, so considering what he usually does, this was easy. NASA's publishes pictures of our planet every month of the year, so John thought, why not stitch them together, and see what the seasons look like from outer space?


Growing History: Why Heirloom Vegetables Belong in Your Garden

heirloomIn 1972 Dianne Ott Whealy’s grandfather gave her seeds the family had brought to Iowa when they’d emigrated from Bavaria a century earlier. Three years later, Whealy and her husband, Kent, started Seed Savers Exchange to share her Grandpa Ott’s Morning Glories and German Pink tomatoes with other gardeners—and discover the open-pollinated vegetable and flower varieties that were similarly cherished by other families. (more…)

Recycled Island

Recycled Island started as a proposal to build a new floating habitat from marine litter in the North Pacific Gyre. This project came from my own personal interest in the possibility of habitats that respond to the rising sea level as well as in the recycled plastics, in particular, sea-waste as a building material. After years of gathering information and speaking to experts I visualized my ideas into a concept design. These images have been published worldwide. (more…)