Date archive forAugust, 2012
By Tristan Fischer On Thursday, August 30th, 2012

How climate change will drive new barbarian hordes into Europe

The Roman Republic, and the Roman Empire which followed it, was one of the most successful multi ethnic, multi cultural, multi linguistic and multi theistic societies in history.  This ability to absorb foreigners More...

By Tristan Fischer On Sunday, August 26th, 2012

Romney does not like paying taxes. You don’t like paying taxes. What if we all did not pay taxes?

Mitt Romney, the Republican US Presidential candidate, does not want to reveal how much he has paid in taxes over the past few years. Either he is embarrassed that it shows that his income is not as high as people More...

By Tristan Fischer On Wednesday, August 22nd, 2012

China has many of the characteristics of an emerging colonial power. How does it compare historically?

Dutch East India Company shipyard – the technological basis of Dutch maritime superiority. History, Future. Now. had dinner earlier this evening with two Kenyans of Indian origin.  Indian-Kenyans make up More...

By Tristan Fischer On Monday, August 20th, 2012

Will Creationism damage US competitiveness?

Conservative Christians helping evolutionary biologists get closer to God Survey after survey show that Americans are uneasy about the Theory of Evolution and prefer to believe that creationism, as revealed in the More...

By Tristan Fischer On Sunday, August 19th, 2012

Why land deals in Africa could make the Great Irish Famine a minor event

Some of you may have noticed some land deals in Africa being announced in the press over the past few years. The stories invariably include China in the headlines “China Gives Up On Europe, Will Target Africa More...

By Tristan Fischer On Sunday, August 19th, 2012

New Wave of Deft Robots Is Changing Global Industry NYT

  Very interesting article from the NYT as part of its iEconomy series.  Key message is that advances in robotics allows robots to do very complex tasks that were historically only possible with human hands More...

By Tristan Fischer On Friday, August 17th, 2012

Roots: A historical understanding of climate change denial, creationism and slavery – 1629-1775

What do black slavery, creationism and climate change denial all have in common?  In the US, at least, a biblical justification and a fascinating geographic overlap.  We look at the issues and then try to understand More...

By Tristan Fischer On Wednesday, August 15th, 2012

Drying up. What happens to farms if there is no water?

NASA’s Landsat satellite images of the growing agriculture industry in the northern reaches of the Syrian Desert in Saudi Arabia. The aquifer water is expected to last another 25 years. Four questions: First, More...

By Tristan Fischer On Tuesday, August 14th, 2012

Robotic telepresence: a cheap way to commute, get skilled foreign labour

Robotic telepresence has just gotten a lot slicker and cheaper thanks to a new product from Double Robotics. A few weeks ago I wrote about living in a virtual world, and the impact of virtual working, virtual emigration, More...

By Tristan Fischer On Saturday, August 11th, 2012

Renewable energy: victim of subsidy discrimination?

Why does renewable energy get criticised for receiving subsidies that are far smaller than subsidies and expenditure on other sectors of the economy?  History, Future. Now. examines why this bias exists from a More...