Friday, June 13, 2008


I've just learned about Meetup through S. Downes Old Daily and thought it might be of interest to you too. It's an online site where you go to meet people who share similar interests so you can meet them f2f... I checked Nova Gorica, nothing there yet.
Here's a lovely Common Craft video on Meetup:

Monday, April 21, 2008

Earth Day 08

Earth Day is celebrated tomorrow. Tjaša wrote about it and my dear friend Cris is one of the many volunteers around the globe involved in a fascinating project dedicated to this: a 24 hour earthcast. It starts 22 April at midnight GMT (i.e. 2 am our time), bringing together voices from around the globe to speak live about the health of our planet (students, teachers, researchers, scientist, engineers,… anybody). You can give it a listen here and are most welcome to join in.
Here's my humble contribution to Earth Day (used Bee's idea, quotes and Flickr CC photos). What do you think?

Anyway, while uploading to slideshare I also came across this really awesome slides by Sunita Williams… Beautiful, aren't they?

Now… concerning the health of our planet… there are many little things we can do… recycle, reuse, support the organic, the local… think positive, be respectful of others… After all we are just part of the system here, aren't we? Life on Earth does not depend on us really, does it?
I recently listened to a cool TED talk by M. Pollan. A really lovely talk, radiating hope and good vibes… It's funny, he notes, that Darwin's On the origin of species was published more than 150 years ago yet we still mostly stick to the cartesian view of man, consciousness, and culture on the one hand, and nature on the other… We are really just one of the many species around, we act and are acted upon… Just like a bee, seduced by a flower's color and fragrance, pollinates and spreads its genes around, so are perhaps we seduced by a certain sort of potato so we choose to plant that one and not some other, or by grass so we mow it like crazy and thus help it outcompete the bushes and trees, its natural competition, or by corn so we keep planting it and spreading its habitat…
Ever thought of that? Interesting, isn't it?
We seem to be pretty much oblivious of the world around us… but if we choose a different species point of view, we suddenly see our role in a very different light. 'The cure for the disease of human self importance' believes Pollan. I like the idea a lot.
I remember Bolte, the TEDster from my previous post, talking about the role of our brain concerning our view and perception of the world; while the right hemisphere connects us to it, blending our body with the environment, the left one separates us from it, making us individuals, persons of our own… Our skin is not the boundary of our being…. there is more to it. A whole lot more!
Let's not fail to see the forest for the trees. Let's respect Mother Nature’s treasures and be thankful to be part of them. Happy Earth Day everybody!

Wednesday, March 12, 2008

Brain Awareness Week

This week is a Brain Awareness Week. I heard it on the radio earlier this week, it made me curious so I googled it up and found some sites promoting this event. To contribute a bit to this, I'd like to share with you lovely tutorials on human anatomy at (check the brain section ;-)) and on the National Geographic site .
Also I'd like to share with you a fascinating TED talk by a neuroanatomist Jill Bolte Taylor, who
... had an opportunity few brain scientists would wish for: One morning, she realized she was having a massive stroke. As it happened -- as she felt her brain functions slip away one by one, speech, movement, understanding -- she studied and remembered every moment. This is a powerful story about how our brains define us and connect us to the world and to one another


Tuesday, March 4, 2008

Downloading music... did you know?

Here's a nice quote from a blog entry entitled Apple iTunes Store Environmental Impact. ... I had no idea. How many CDs and DVDs do you have? How many have you thrown away?
Sooner or later, all Music CD’s and the Jewel Cases they are packaged in will end up in a landfill somewhere. CD’s are mostly manufactured from Aluminum and Polycarbonate along with Lacquer, Dyes, and other materials such as water, glass, and nickel. Most of these materials must also be processed before manufacturers can use them to make CD’s. As an example, to make plastic, crude oil from the ground is combined with natural gas and chemicals in a processing plant. In addition to manufacturing, there are transportation costs (shipping CD’s in trucks to the store) as well as packaging costs (the jewel cases, shrink wrap, etc.) to consider as well.

By buying your music from the Apple Store, you are helping to prevent a stack of CD’s 2.6 miles high from having to be manufactured PER DAY.

Saturday, February 23, 2008

Janez D.

I generally don't like politics so I don't follow it and don't talk about it. The way I see it is talking rather than working, saying things not necessarily meaning them, getting money not necessarily deserving it… I know nobody is perfect and I know I am not doing justice here to people, who take this profession seriously, with dignity and pride, who care about the job they do, who know they are there elected by people to work for people... As I said, politics is not my topic, I'm making an exception here to pay tribute to Janez D., a politician I liked.
Drnovšek was our ex PM and our ex President, a man who chose to live a simple life in a cottage in Zaplana baking his own bread rather than in a luxurious presidential palace, the man who personaly brought trailers to the homeless gypsy family rejected by their angry co- villagers, the white man from the inauguration of the Indian President in Bolivia, the man launching his personal peace initiatives for Kosovo and Darfur, the man believing we can make the world a better place for us all, a charismatic man with good heart and common sense listening and speaking to people, the only President whose Christmas message I listened to. He died tonight. I wish him peace.

Friday, February 15, 2008

Touring Unesco's World Heritage sites

On an island hop, originally uploaded by alvanman.

I'm doing a tour of Unesco's World Heritage sites. I have just returned from the Puerto-Princesa Subterranean River National Park in the Philippines.

This park features a spectacular limestone karst landscape with an underground river. One of the river's distinguishing features is that it emerges directly into the sea, and its lower portion is subject to tidal influences. The area also represents a significant habitat for biodiversity conservation. The site contains a full 'mountain-to-sea' ecosystem and has some of the most important forests in Asia.

Heh, just kidding. I wish I could... But... I've just come across this lovely site - registration), where you can enjoy 360-degree imaging of 216 Unesco's World Heritage sites (25% of all 851 registered by UNESCO), 15 are on the World Monuments Fund Watch List and 67 are additions by Altogether there are 1641 panographies (360-degree imaging). More sites are going to be added in the near future. It's cool, you have a 360 degree view, you can zoom in and out, access short descriptions of the sites and monuments... I navigated the sites by clicking the map... the Search option didn't seem to work unfortunately. Check it out and let me know where you've gone. Enjoy!