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Tuesday, 28 April 2009

Energy Credit Sim

I have now finished the first run though of the energy credit sim. We need now to look at it and see what we want to do with it and what we want to get out of it. Then we need to start running simulations.

At the moment I feel its too simple and perhaps we need to look at cases that would add some more complexity to it.


Tuesday, 21 April 2009

Earth Day

Happy Earth Day!

Every year NET is Umeå has an Earth Day lecture. This year we worked in cooperation with the Imagine Network in Second Life and the lecture was broadcast live in Second Life as part of the Earth Week event as well.

This year, the talk was about an idea for going from today's unsustainable system to a better sustainable system. I started of looking at our vision of a futuer sustainable system and then looked at today's unsustainable system. I argued that climate change, poverty and the unsustainablelity of today's system results from the way we do things thus if we wish to move to something sustainable then we need to look at an alternative socio-economic system.

I then went on the present the proto-technate as an idea for moving form today's system to tomorrow sustainable system. The proto-technate forms a collection of cooperative communities embedded in the current money system. Internally it doesn't use money and experts manage the technical side with direct democracy for the people side.

At the end of the talk I had quite a lot of questions both from the audience in Umeå and in Second Life. In the end the whole event went really well.


Tuesday, 14 April 2009

The Physical Foundations of Economics

This weekend I was reading a book called "The Physical Foundations of Economics". The author presents some interesting ideas of economics, and social systems, as type of thermodynamic systems. He sees the systems as attempting to create minimum entropy structures. As information has links with entropy, we can also see economic systems and information system. The author brings in some interesting points about value and sees that as information. Also the author has an information / entropy definition of value and sees systems as either having fixed costs or flexible costs as entropy functions. The author links back to empirical data and shows how an thermodynamic interpretation matches the empirical data better than neoclassical economics.

I have an interest in this because it links to NETs ideas of using thermodynamics as a way to interpret economics as as the foundation of Energy Credits. I think the theroy preseted in the book will offer us a better foundation for ECs and for making a comparison with current economic theory.


Tuesday, 7 April 2009

Oil Algea and Earth Day

Last week I had a meeting with another algae expert who specialises in fresh water algae. From what we talked about it looks like we might have a couple of problems.

First, I will need to maintain the temperature at around 18 Deg C. This I had a look at over the weekend and with out active cooling the best I could do was 23 Deg C. Come summer time I expect the temperature of the lab to go up to about 30 Deg C. The could cause the algae population to crash and encourage the growth of other, toxic, algae.

Second, I was hoping this would form part of a cyclic system that we will need for sustainability reasons. The waste from one system would form the input to another. As such I was hoping to use urine as a food source for the algae but this probably wont work as it will have some important trace elements missing. I will have to look at this again.

As for this week, I am concentrating of the Earth Day lecture. That lecture will take place at Umeå University on the 21st at 19:30. The subject will cover the proto-technate as a means for moving from today's unsustainable system to a future sustainable system.


Wednesday, 1 April 2009

EC Sim Update

I have a "working" version of the energy credit sim running now. I say "working" because I still,need to go through it to see that it does do what I think it should do. Once I have done that I will release the code to NET and we can look at it and see what do we want to get out of. So far, I can see that I should imp+lement a class to collect stats but I will wait till we have looked at the simulatuion and decided what data we want to collect.

On the oil algea front; I have talked to another miocrobiologist and we will ahve a meeting on Friday to talk aout oil algae.