Sustainability and energy efficiency edition:
- Question to the local Mayoral race candidates about energy policy - I submitted a question to Mayor Hutton and Rick Thalls via the Pal-Item's forum, asking "if elected/re-elected, what specific steps will you take to uphold the commitment the City has made to improve the environmental health of our communities, reduce emissions, discourage sprawl, increase fuel efficiency, and reduce energy consumption? What steps have you taken in your own life to reduce your energy consumption?" I wonder if they'll respond on their blog?
- The Cuddle Mattress - if you're looking for a get rich quick scheme, just patent this idea today! (And think of all the heat loss prevented by more efficient cuddling.)
- A Quick Video Introduction to Peak Oil - a primer on the concept of peak oil and resources available to learn more. Created by Aaron Wissner, who I met this past weekend (and geeked out with a bit over his Canon HD DV video camera).
- Business Alliance for Local Living Economies - How can my business use less energy and produce less waste? How can I help my customers understand that locally owned businesses are important to the strength of our community? What new business opportunities exist for our region in the emerging green economy? BALLE has some good answers.
- smallisbeautiful.org - programs that demonstrate that both social and environmental sustainability can be achieved by applying the values of human-scale communities and respect for the natural environment to economic issues.
As a web developer, I often can't avoid viewing every website I visit through that critical and technical lens. As has been the tradition in the geek community for several national election cycles, I thought I would take on a technical review of the websites belonging to the two current candidates for Richmond's Mayoral election, Sally Hutton and Rick Thalls. My analysis will look at graphic design, content structure, and overall usability. Note that this analysis is NOT meant to imply endorsement of either candidates` political views or campaigns as a whole.
Continue reading Technical Review of Richmond Mayoral Candidate Campaign Websites
I just returned from the Fourth Annual U.S. Conference on Peak Oil and Community Solutions, my third year in a row attending. As in years past, it was informative, inspiring and very practical. I've come away with another list of 50 things I want to do in my life and in Richmond to help address Peak Oil and climate change. I met some great people doing some amazing things in their communities, and made some connections that I hope will help us support each other.
For now I won't try to record the conference proceedings here (they'll be on DVD soon), but I have a number of blog entries in the works. If you're interested in hearing about some of what I learned, I'll also be covering it in a talk on Thursday, November 15th at 12 PM in a session called "Going Local: Building a Self-Reliant Richmond, Indiana." Join us if you can.
I remember the first time I was logging onto a remote computer system (a BBS) and was asked to choose a handle - an alias for my online activities. There'd been plenty of times where a computer game or other piece of software had asked for one, but this was the first time when other people were going to know me by this name. Wow! I thought about it carefully...what nickname would be the best representation of my personality and my approach to life, while also exuding the appropriate amount of playfulness, mystery and anonymity? At the time, I chose something that might politely be called "lame."
Since then, I've used a few other handles that were more appropriate and cool (to me, anyway), but lately, I've decided that the handle that best represents of my personality online is the same one that represents it offline: my real name. And in most cases, I'm of the opinion that we should all use our real names when engaging in online discussion and community-building.
It's sometimes a suggestion that makes people uncomfortable, so I want to provide some additional reasoning to consider and discuss:
Continue reading Using real names in online communities
Join us at Live-Richmond.com for a live blog of the Richmond Mayoral Debate.
Update: My transcript of the mayoral debate is now available.