Archive for July, 2008

Brainy eating

Monday, July 28th, 2008

Through a wellchosen diet you may be able to help keep your brain in good order, improve your cognitive abilities, reduce the effects of aging. 

Positive substances: Folic-acid compunds, antioxidants, omega-3 fat.

Positive foods: Spinach, orange juice, vegetable oils, berries, curcumin, oily fish, walnuts, kiwi fruits, red wine, green tea, avocado,….

Remember the old wisdom: eat foods (that your grandmother would recognise as foods), not too much, mostly plants, eat with rhe seasons.

Hospitality – unconditional, world wide

Saturday, July 26th, 2008

The question of borderless and unconditional hospitality in the world is considered.

Philosopher Emmanuel Levinas has formulated ethical demands on the subject, and we should consider translating this into  juridical and political practices.  

A new Mediterranean economic sone

Friday, July 25th, 2008

An economic union for the countries around the Mediterranean is under contemplation – and maybe a bit more.

The politics, economics, industrial activity, general investment are gathering steam. The region´s affairs need to be developed – to the best for the countries involved and the rest of us. Special cases like Israel and Turkey are included in the effort.

Historically this was a very coordinated area – the Greeks and Romans were busy here once.

Bad eating habits?

Friday, July 25th, 2008

Food supplies in poor countries are under strain. The rich countries have had plentiful supplies, but are now looking towards a possible new situation with less to eat – possibly too little. At the same time many are eating far too much -  and about 40% of what is taken into cities is never eaten!

A question about the sustainability of modern agriculture is coming to the surface – we use a lot of fuels for transport and farm machinery, energy for production of fertilizers, and fresh water use is enourmous…

Must we rethink the production methods for food?

We could start by eating less!

Nature policy

Sunday, July 20th, 2008

A country should have a vision as to what its countryside should be like. This concerns relations to the plants, animals, insects, fish and other living organisms we should find, and the degree of naturalness we should aim for.  

We need to think about the consequences of what we do – in the near and long term. Examples are large new areas for agriculture, deforestation, new building areas, massive roadworks with standardised plants at all roadsides etc. 

We must not forget nature as it is intended to be!

Moving towards one net

Saturday, July 19th, 2008

3G is being used extensively, 4G is under development. At the same time WIMAX is fighting for a place in the sun. These net systems are based on different standards, 3/4G is championed by the telecoms industry, WIMAX by the computer industry. The 3/4G standard is called LTE Long Term Evolution.

We don´t need two standards, and as consumers we need a net that is independent of content providers, appliance providers, service providers.

Lets have one net based on one standard where data can flow fast and freely!

The future of music

Thursday, July 17th, 2008

“I will not make records any more”.

The next generation will not respond to music the way I used to. 

There is no physical representation of music through discs, sleeves etc.

Artists are allowing free downloads from the net.

New business models are being developed, changing companies. Technology changes both for producer and listener. 

Concerts are more popular than ever, the experience economy is the new arena, sources of income are found in new places.

“I dont want indie cred – lets play the stadiums!”

The pace of change is furious – in a few tens of years everything is new!

Designs of urbanity

Tuesday, July 15th, 2008

An architect with a special approach:


Leading force:

Heavy urbanism:

Environmental governance

Tuesday, July 15th, 2008

A major theme for politicians is environmental pollution, often mentioned in connection with emisssions of carbon dioxides, nitrogen oxides etc. Control procedures for these emissions are not in place, and there seems to be a lack of understanding of the gravity of the problem, or may be the matter is not ready for affirmative action yet. There is also the question of climatic justice – who is responsible for handling the effects that are caused by others: “polluter pays” ? 

There must be a baseline, quantifiable goals, agreement as to what emissions we are talking about, time series of data so that we can see what happens over time, control institutions to oversee the work and its results. The figures must state how serious the situation really is, and the authority on this must be widely accepted.

Norwegian stats:

Commitment in the form of laws or regulations in all countries must be established.  Gobal environmental governance can not be voluntary? 

Let the principle of procrastination apply for a while longer. 

Urban development – the commercial city

Tuesday, July 15th, 2008

Who is in reality in charge when developing new towns and new parts of old towns? 

Private and public cooperation is often cited as the modern way of financing large projects in cities. The public side gets their services going and the private builder gets his income. Often the “private” company investing is publicly owned and with commercial interests.

What will the city be and look like when this process is seen over a longer time span? It seems to me that we risk that everything will be a mall – you can buy food and clothes etc. wherever you are. Spaces for meeting other people are gone, places to play are few, parks and dams are hardly found, it is difficult to find an area where you can stroll peacefully. 

The planning processes will have to be scrutinized! Urban youth are now spending much of their time in the malls – because malls are the only places in town. Complex social developments are taking place – our public meeting places are being taken away at great speed, our activity is seen by cameras, private guards are present. We now risk losing civic rights because commercial rights have taken over. If you don´t spend you have to move away! 

The connection between politics, capital, architecture, sociology and the individuals as private citizens have to be looked into anew. 

Enrique Penalosa, once mayor of Bogota: ” when malls become a meeting place, it´s a sign that a city is sick”.