Organic food - agricultura biológica

Nomes mal escolhidos em qualquer das linguas. Porque toda a comida é orgânica (tirando os minerais) e toda a agricultura é biológica.

Ambos os termos querem apenas dizer:
-Produtos alimentares agricolas ou processados que não contém adubos nem pesticidas não naturais.

Apesar do hype que rodeia o conceito não está cientificamente provado que este tipo de alimentos seja melhor para os seres humanos e ambiente. Os defensores apregoam que é melhor não utilizar compostos químicos tóxicos no ambiente e que assim reduzimos o risco de os consumir. No entanto muitos adubos e pesticidas sintéticos são não tóxicos e noutros casos verificou-se que apenas lavando os produtos hortícolas estes compostos são eliminados.
Outra questão é a dificuldade de produzir verdadeiros "alimentos biológicos". A maior parte dos terrenos de cultivo já contém químicos que lá ficaram de utilizações anteriores ou que para lá são levados pelas chuvas, escorrências ou através dos níveis freáticos.
Em teoria é eticamente desejável que se consumam produtos de agricultura biológica pois estes podem evitar problemas de saúde e ambientais que poderiam surgir se se usassem compostos perigosos na agricultura. Por outro lado o elevado preço e a possibilidade da presença de parasitas e bactérias desencoraja o seu uso. Do ponto de vista nutricional os produtos de agricultura orgânica são iguais aos outros.

Beware of organic food healthy hoaxes. Organic food is associated with healthy but several products advertised and sold as "organic food" do not present any healthy aspects: Organic cheetos, Organic potato chips, Organic chocolate candy bars... They might be made with "organic" products but they still are full of fat, calories, sugar.... Keep in mind that poo is also organic but we do not eat it

Earth Day - Dia da Terra

Since today is Earth day I will write about "Green Morons". Just what is a "Green Moron"?
A green Moron is someone lacking a minimum of common sense and trying to be green. They will buy any ideas or products the market will advertise as "green", "ecological" or "organic".

These will include:

- Traveling by train instead of plane in countries were the electricity for the train is generated in coal power plants.
- Buying a digital thermometer to substitute the old leaded one. Digital thermometers contain an LCD display and a lithium based battery (both things are environmental non friendly and toxic).
- Switch from incandescent light bulbs to compact fluorescent ones in the house but leave "pilot" lights on all the time in their electronic equipment.

- Substitute plastic supermarket bags (non-biodegradable ) with paper ones (chlorine bleached, produced by killing trees).
- Take all their domestic packaging material trash to the recycler, but buy the less expensive stuff on supermarket regardless of how much non-green packaging is used in it.
- Think IKEA products are environmentally friendly ( Since when tons of disposable cardboard packaging are "green"? Is non-solid wood furniture that will be in the trash in 5 years an environmentally friendly product?)
- Biofuels are the solution for our cars ( Sure! never mind people starving because they cannot afford some basic food anymore).

- Hydrogen is a clean fuel with zero emissions ( Sure! But before we put it in our car it needs to be produced and it is not produced by a green process at all. Furthermore to avoid embrittlement the car engine will need a lot of Nickel and Chromium parts- Both coming from dirty mines and dirtily produced !)

Trying to be "Green" is indeed very difficult if you don´t have any scientific/ technological knowledge and if the sellers are not honest. An official study about 1000 products sold in the Canadian market as "green" reached the following conclusions:

99% of the products had misleading green claims.

The main "greenwashings" were:
1) Hidden trade-off - Energy efficient electronic products containing hazardous materials.
2) No proof - Official certification agencies are yet to be born in the world. So until today it is not possible to prove that a certain products is "organic" or "green". Despite that you will see a lot o products in the market with a label "certified organic" or similar. Just who exactly certified it is a mystery...
3) Vagueness/ Inaccuracy- Products claiming to be "100% natural" containing dangerous natural products. Yes, the fact that they are natural does not exclude that they are bad.
4) Irrelevance - An example: Products claiming to be "CFC free". CFCs were banned decades ago therefore there are no products in the market with CFCs. And the word recyclable does not mean that it will be recycled.
5) Oxymorons - Advertising Organic cigarettes or Hybrid SUV. Will cigarettes be less bad if they are organic? Will an SUV be green if it is an hybrid? Here they are just applying a green concept to totally ungreen products.
6) Lies/Fibbing - In a few cases it was also found that claims of certification by international environmental standards were false.

What makes an aware consumer:
- read consumer reviews and general science and technology news often.
- learn the exact meaning of buzz words like carbon neutral, recyclable, biodegradable, organic, locavore, ecological footstep... To understand clearly the concepts.
- Question yourself + Ask for expert advice. Do you really need to buy a certain product? Is it really what they advertise? Think about all the possible environmental issues a product can have, don't focus on just one.


Googles Scries

View of Googleplex- Google main office in the US

Google universe of products/companies:

- Writely- Bought by Google . Currently part of Google docs. Online document editor and share tool.
- Blogger - This crap where I am writing. Blogs!
- Android - Open source platform for mobile comunications. Already 6 patents in registration. Still to appear on the market in a mobile or handheld device. Google already has several products included in Blackberries in the US - Google Talk, Sync and Updater; Maps mobile. While Gmail mobile appear in some Palm models (Treo).
- YouTube - Do I need to talk about this one? It is very popular but seems to be going without direction just like Blogspot.... Is there something new and useful in these two? No.
- Jotspot- Bought by Google. A wiki hosting service. Currently "included" in Google sites, a service to create professional looking websites cooperatively.
- Loopt- Bought by Google. A GPS based social network for mobile devices. ( Interesting how Google recently bought a lot of things for mobile devices...). Unfortunately not available in Europe.
- Scribd- Publish and share documents online. Ideal for students and teachers. Saves paper!
- Google.org - Philanthropic organization owned by Google. Aid and green activities sponsored. Non profit.
- Double Click - Internet advertising company.
- Google Inc. - The mother company.
- Google earth and Google Maps- Virtual earth viewer. Developed by Keyhole Inc. a company bought by Google. Google later also Bought and integrated Panoramio (a Geolocation photo tool) in Google Earth. Currently includes integration with 3Dwarehouse and Google Sketchup products - These were also bought products/companies by Google. Other flavors in Maps: Sky, Moon and Mars. What we see today in Google Earth a dn in Maps is the result of Google buying several companies or products over the years. Acquired companies were working in several areas- Aerial photo, Geolocation, 3D, Mapping, computer vision, map analysis.
-Postini- Email security company bought by Google.
- Jaiku- A Finnish micro blogging company bought by Google this year.
-Google docs - Online cooperative word processor, spreadsheet , presentations etc... Includes Calendar management, creation and publishing. Another Google product Apps is an "integrator" of Google products targeted for business professionals- Can integrate Google docs with Gmail and Google sites in a custom domain site.
- Notebook - Application to save online clippings.
Google search engine- in flavors like Scholar, Patent, Product, Code and Regular. All of them very useful!
-igoogle - costumizable start page in browser.
- Trends - a lot of products to analyse trends are been tested in Google labs. Including music trends.
- Urchin- Web analytics company bought by Google.
- Ride Finder- A product being tested in Google Labs after the acquisition of ZipDash, a company working in traffic analysis.
-AOL- giant of Broadband internet access in the US. Bought in 2005 by Google.
- Grand central - voice communications product.
- Marratech- e-conferences

Other products:
- Google News, Google Maps, Talk, SMS, Adsense, Adwords, Audio Ads, Click to call, TV ads, Google Groups, Gmail, Picasa, Google translate, Feed burner and Google reader (rss readers), Joga Bonito and Dodgeball and Orkut (social networks), Desktop, toolbar, Google books.

full list of Google
full list of Google acquisitions as of 2007.

did I mention Google gadgets? An array of Knick-Knacks for your desktop !



problemas servidor

Os problemas do servidor de imagens não estão resolvidos e é pouco provavel que venham a estar.
A solução será a inauguração de um novo blog. Mas não vai haver hipotese de repor conteudos do figmento que entretanto desapareceram.


Big Hoaxes

Mais um produto para o arquivo das aldrabices. Há muito que não me divertia tanto com um texto para vender um produto.
Trata-se de um "economizador de combustível" publicitado como permitindo poupar até 20% do consumo de gasolina. Como é maravilhoso permite ainda reduzir drasticamente as emissões de gases e particulas , aumenta a potência do veículo e permite obter maior velocidade. Além disso diz a empresa que o vende " dura para sempre". Ah, e pode ser usado em qualquer tipo de veículo, de tractores a motas. O preço quase nada: 27 €.
Vejamos o texto que descreve o produto escrito em Brasileirês Espanholoso:

O Otimizador de Combustível é um produto ecológico formado por dois segmentos magnéticos especiais, fabricados com compostos de última geração, os quais formam uma ressonância magnética que fratura as correntes de hidrocarbonetos, alinhando-as e ionizándolas novamente, de tal maneira que a cada uma delas entre em maior contato com o oxigênio, permitindo desse modo uma melhor combustão, aumentando o rendimento de seu motor, e conseqüentemente gerando uma poupança no consumo de combustível."

.Um "produto ecológico"? Como é que 2 peças de uma liga metálica pintadas podem ser ecológicas se o seu fabrico polui muito e gasta energia em barda?.

. "dois segmentos magnéticos especiais" - quer dizer que são 2 imans!

. " formam uma ressonância magnética" - pergunto-me se será uma RMN (RM nuclear) ou uma RPE (ressonância de spin electrónico)... Adiante... Como qualquer pessoa deve saber as ressonâncias magnéticas são técnicas de detecção ( podendo ou não estar associadas a imagiologia) que permitem fazer diagnósticos clinícos ou analisar composição química de amostras. Uma das razões da sua larga utilização é não alterarem nada na amostra (por isso se usam em medicina!). Ora o que diz na publicidade deste produto é precisamente que a "ressonância magnética" altera quimicamente o combustível e os gases de escape. Por outro lado, a RM não se forma...induz-se.

. " A ressonância magnética fratura a corrente de hidrocarbonetos"- Não não faz tal coisa. A "ressonância magnética" não quebra ligações químicas dos hidrocarbonetos da gasolina.

Portanto se quiserem comprar 2 imans pintados de verde por 27€ aqui fica o link.

A mesma loja online vende um "ionizador para carro" que diz gerar Ozono. É bom que não gere porque o ozono é perigoso podendo causar problemas respiratórios e irritações graves.


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