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Prejudice Comes from a Basic Human Need and Way of Thinking, New Research Suggests

Where does prejudice come from? Not from ideology, say the authors of a new paper. Instead, prejudice stems from a deeper psychological need, associated with a particular way of thinking. People who aren't comfortable with ambiguity and want to make quick and firm decisions are also prone to making generalizations about others. - Science Daily

A Multilayered Anti-Pattern

The problem is that we are adapting to the wrong things — to images, or to short-term greed, or to the clutter of mechanics. These maladaptations are known as “antipatterns” — a term coined not by Alexander, but by software engineers. An antipattern is something that does things wrong, yet is attractive for some reason (profitable or easy in the short term, but dysfunctional, wasteful of resources, unsustainable, unhealthy in the long term). It also keeps re-appearing. Sounds like our economy and wasteful lifestyle?Michael Mehaffy and Nikos Salingaros
The permaculture focus is on tracking patterns in nature and design, to create pleasure for ourselves and to find good examples for the world. Patterns work in a multitude of connections with their surroundings, and the more connections there are, the richer are the pattern languages the patterns are part of.

Unfortunately, although our pattern languages might have a deep poetry, not all people feel attracted to their harmony (meaning…

Self-Organization

One definition of self-organization: “Self-organization is the spontaneous often seemingly purposeful formation of spatial, temporal, spatiotemporal structures or functions in systems composed of few or many components.” Self-organization is visible in many cases in nature. Self-organizing systems are adaptive and robust. They can reconfigure themselves to changing demands and thus keep on functioning in spite of perturbations.- P2P-blog No doubt, self-organization is the future of mankind and the end of today's totalitarian democracies
Read more: Frontiers of Design Science: Self-Organization

Real Wealth: Howard T. Odum’s Energy Economics

The great conceit of Industrial man imagined that his progress in agricultural yields was due to new know-how... A whole generation … thought that the carrying capacity of the earth was proportional to the amount of land under cultivation and that higher efficiencies in using the energy of the sun had arrived. This is a sad hoax, for industrial man no longer eats potatoes made from solar energy; now he eats potatoes partly made of oil. - Howard T. Odum Read the article: Real wealth: Howard T. Odum’s energy economics

Awakening the Village Heart and Mind

ECONOMY: Ecological Economics by Joshua Farley

EXCERPT:
Many people would agree that the central desirable end of economic activity is a high quality of life for this and future generations. Conventional economists argue that humans are insatiable, and therefore economics should focus on endless economic growth and ever-increasing consumption. Considerable evidence, however, suggests that humans are in fact satiable-there is a point beyond which increasing consumption does not make us better off.

Market economies—in which the prices of goods and services are determined by the interplay of supply and demand in voluntary exchanges—play a critical role in the modern world. Market forces determine the quantity of oil pumped, minerals mined, forests cut, and fish caught. They determine the industries to which these resources are allocated, how much labor and capital are employed to convert them to market products, and who gets to consume those products.

In theory, competitive markets1 allocate factors of production—resources like ene…

Koch Snowflakes

A very interesting article on fractals on the blog of Philip T. Keenan: Koch Snowflakes

Lake Randsfjorden & Dokkadeltaet National Wetland Center

Wisit the website of Dokkadeltaet National Wetland Centerhere.
North of Oslo, west of Lillehammer and south of the highest mountains in Norway, Jotunheimen, water drains through mires, creeks and rivers into the ramsar site and nature reserve, Dokkadelta. The water from the alpine mountain region Synnfjell runs through the protected river Etna and through the river Dokka, passing several aqua power stations, into the fourth biggest lake of Norway, Randsfjord. Wetlands, creeks, rivers, forest and vast alpine mountains invite to experience the landscape of the municipalities Northern Land, Southern Land and Etnedal in the county of Oppland. Dokkadelta National Wetland Centre has got the task to develop this compact ecosystem for experiencing the strong bonds to nature in the culture of this region. But also protecting the biological diversity of this typical nordic wetland ecosystem for further generations. Nature, where the black throated diver calls on the foggy lake at dawn, and the c…

A Response from VillageTowns

Editorial Notes

A response from VillageTowns:

We were delighted to read the review of our VillageTown work and would like to add some comments, but your comments section is closed.

Øyvind Holmstad wrote "Unfortunately they don’t seem have the same enthusiasm for the compost toilet, but hopefully they’ll take this advice from Lester Brown."


We did read the links provided, but note that Lester Brown writes: "Collected urine can be trucked to nearby farms". That means we need trucks which means the VillageTown need to buy trucks, fuel them and use roads to transport the urine in those trucks. And where do we store the urine until it is collected? Do we need to include urine storage tanks in each house? That adds a few hundred dollars and then means we need to send trucks around to empty them. How long do we leave the urine in the tank before collecting it? And how do we vent the tanks if people have roof gardens up where the vent pipes need to go? The same problem holds…

Geospatial Analysis and Living Urban Geometry

"This essay outlines how to incorporate morphological rules within the exigencies of our technological age. We propose using the current evolution of GIS (Geographical Information Systems) technologies beyond their original representational domain, towards predictive and dynamic spatial models that help in constructing the new discipline of "urban seeding". We condemn the high-rise tower block as an unsuitable typology for a living city, and propose to re-establish human-scale urban fabric that resembles the traditional city. Pedestrian presence, density, and movement all reveal that open space between modernist buildings is not urban at all, but neither is the open space found in today's sprawling suburbs. True urban space contains and encourages pedestrian interactions, and has to be designed and built according to specific rules. The opposition between traditional self-organized versus modernist planned cities challenges the very core of the urban planning discip…

Compact City Replaces Sprawl

"Both in Europe and North America there is a growing concern about the development of urban form, especially deconcentration of urban land use in the form of urban sprawl. This has unintentional consequences such as city centre decline, increased reliance on the use of the private car, and the loss of open space. While governments try to regulate the development of urban form, there are no easy solutions. However, policies such as new urbanism and smart growth in North America, and compact city and multifunctional land use policies in Europe, though difficult to implement, have the potential to curb urban sprawl and the further growth in car use, as the cases of Portland, Oregon and Randstad Holland in The Netherlands illustrate."
Read the essay by Nikos A. Salingaros: Compact City Replaces Sprawl

Just Another Failed "Tower in the Park" (at Grefsen Station, Oslo)

This new project at old Grefsen Station is advertised to become one of Oslo's largest and most exiting housing projects. Well, some still think Le Corbusier's old idea of "the tower in the park" is modern and exiting. A pity his ideas didn't follow him into the grave, but continue to multiply.

By the way, the main investor of this project is ROM Eiendom, the same company that is given the task to develop the new Oslo Central Station area. I guess you can see the same flawed typologies: From Stone Desert to Glass Desert.

(Typologies like just a hole in the wall for windows to empathize the machine age, the windows exactly wrong to make the building "exiting", vertical pull design etc.)
Poor urbanism continues to be practiced, enthusiastically supported by the universities, because both private developers and city governments refuse to accept the scientific basis of good urbanism. They continue to listen to academic experts who dismiss human-scale soluti…

Vi har gjort nok ugagn nå

Gi meg en inviterende, nedskalert, menneskelig byorganisme, der det gode byliv kan utfolde seg. De høye egoistiske seg selv-nok bygningene burde vi være ferdige med. - Niels A. Torp Translated: Give me an inviting, down scaled, human city organism, where the pleasures of city life can unfold. The high, egoistic, its self enough buildings we should be finished with.  Herlig! Til dags dato den beste artikkelen som er skrevet om den pågående raseringen av min kjære hovedstad!
Les kronikken til Niels A. Torp i Aftenposten: Vi har gjort nok ugagn nå

ECONOMY: Money and Energy

EXCERPT:
Money and energy have always been linked. For example, a gold currency was essentially an energy currency because the amount of gold produced in a year was determined by the cost of the energy it took to extract it. If energy (perhaps in the form of slaves or horses rather than fossil fuel) was cheap and abundant, goldmining would prove profitable, and a lot of gold would go into circulation enabling more trading to be done. If the increased level of activity then drove the price of slaves or coal up, the flow of gold would decline, slowing the rate at which the economy grew. It was a neat,natural balancing mechanism which worked rather well. In fact, the only time it broke down seriously was when the Spanish conquistadors got gold for very little energy—by stealing it from the Aztecs and the Incas. That caused a massive inflation and damaged the Spanish economy for many years.

Frå ideologi til teknologi

Michael Mehaffy og Nikos Salingaros har for tida ein serie av essay gåande i Metropolis Magazine, dei vert samla her. Eg har inga aning om kor lenge han vil gå - vonleg for alltid. Men same det så er det på høg at denne serien vert introdusert for eit norsk publikum, og eg vil fokusera på dei fyrste fem essaya om teknologiane til Christopher Alexander.

Essaya om Alexander sine teknologiar i kronologisk rekkjefylgje: 
The Radical Technology of Christopher AlexanderThe Sustainable Technology of Christopher AlexanderThe Pattern Technology of Christopher AlexanderThe Living Technology of Christopher AlexanderThe “Wholeness-Generating” Technology of Christopher Alexander
Det tjugene hundreåret var ideologiane sitt hundreår, men alt i hop enda i vitlaus konsumerisme. Så det er openbart at ideologiar aleine ikkje har noko godt svar, sjølv om dei kan helde på mang ei sanning og vera ein reiskap for å sameina folk i eit felles krafttak. Lell vert dette fåfengd om folk ikkje har dei rette verktøya…

Redear Sunfish

"Fractalism" is the Best Model for Future Societies

What a fantastic article by Kevin Carson in today's p2p-blog! This build up under the statement of Nikos Salingaros that every stable system has fractal properties, where the smaller and smaller units outnumber the larger by far in numbers. We have no better way to organize ourselves if we want to become part of nature, something we cannot avoid if we want our societies to survive.


As the p2p philosophy is a free culture, I reprint the whole article.
How Much of the Economy is Friction?

Charles Hugh Smith raises the question of how much of the U.S. economy consists of the actual output of goods and services, versus the friction entailed in producing them. As a small example, he cites a physicians’ group that includes ten doctors — and twelve billing clerks.

That’s the general subject of a research paper I did for Center for a Stateless Society (C4SS), The Political Economy of Waste.

The larger and more hierarchical institutions become, and the more centralized the economic system, …

Do Plants Perform Best With Family or Strangers? Researchers Consider Social Interactions

A growing body of work suggests plants recognize and respond to the presence and identity of their neighbours. But can plants cooperate with their relatives? While some studies have shown that siblings perform best -- suggesting altruism towards relatives -- other studies have shown that when less related plants grow together the group can actually outperform siblings. This implies the group benefits from its diversity by dividing precious resources effectively and competing less. - Science Daily This small article in Science Daily held some interesting thoughts about the permaculture practise of guildsDo Plants Perform Best With Family or Strangers? Researchers Consider Social Interactions

From Ideology to Technology

Michael Mehaffy and Nikos Salingaros are running a series of essays in Metropolis Magazine at the moment, they are all published here. I’ve no idea how long the series will run — hopefully forever. Anyway, it’s time to introduce this series to permaculture people, and I’ll be concentrating on the first five essays about the technologies of Christopher Alexander.

The essays on Alexander’s technologies in chronological order:
The Radical Technology of Christopher AlexanderThe Sustainable Technology of Christopher AlexanderThe Pattern Technology of Christopher AlexanderThe Living Technology of Christopher AlexanderThe “Wholeness-Generating” Technology of Christopher Alexander
The 20th century was the century of ideologies, but it all ended in mindless consumerism. So obviously, ideologies alone are not the answer, although they can hold many a truth and be a tool to unite people behind a common endeavour. Still, all this is pointless if the people do not have the right tools, or even worse…

Brains Come Wired for Cooperation

"What we learned is that when it comes to the brain and cooperation, the whole is definitely greater than the sum of its parts," said Fortune, of the Department of Psychological and Brain Sciences at the Krieger School of Arts and Sciences. "We found that the brain of each individual participant prefers the combined activity over his or her own part." Science Daily
This study fits very well to the last essay of Mehaffy and Salingaros about self organizing of cities. We are created for cooperation, for the creation of unfolding, living structure. It's just our governments and the corporations which restrict cooperation and unfolding to happen naturally, and thus destroy communities in the name of modernism.

Read the article at Science Daily: It Takes Two: Brains Come Wired for Cooperation, Neuroscientists Discover

Fyrrig furu i herlig naturhus

Sjelden lekkerbisken av en interiørartikkel i Aftenposten, fra det livlige furu- og natursteinshuset til arkitekt Bjørn Eik og kona Grethe. Herlig å se en artikkel som avviker fra det sedvanlige boligporno-konseptet!

Les artikkelen: De har huset fullt av trær.

Besøk Arkitektkontoret Eik her.

Zeitgeist: Moving Forward

Dokumentaren er tekstet på norsk.

Den tredje veg

Les artikkelen til Dave Pollard: All About Power, and the Three Ways to Topple It (Part 1).

Dave Pollard lister i denne interressante analysen opp tre veier for en endring av nåværende verdensorden. Han faller ned på den tredje vei som den beste, å utsulte det nåværende systemet.
The third way to bring about major global change is incapacitation — rendering the old order unable to function by sapping what it needs to survive. This is the method that disease uses to prey on fragile and vulnerable organs, that parasites and venomous creatures use to weaken and sometimes kill their (much larger) hosts, that terrorists use to paralyze their enemies, and that innovative businesses use to undermine, render obsolete and supplant bigger, less flexible businesses. For those of us with neither the patience or religious fanaticism to wait for a global natural catastrophe, nor the naivety to believe in a successful ‘popular’ revolution, this third way is the only way to change, and save, our belea…

Barry Schwartz: The Real Crisis? We Stopped Being Wise

Barry Schwartz makes a passionate call for practical wisdom as an antidote to a society gone mad with bureaucracy. He argues powerfully that rules often fail us, incentives often backfire, and practical, everyday wisdom will help rebuild our world. - TED-Talk

Can We Have Post-Peak Oil Thrivable Societies?

"I find the ideas in the fractals, both as a body of knowledge and as a metaphor, an incredibly important way of looking at the world." - Vice President and Nobel Laureate Al Gore, New York Times, Wednesday, June 21, 2000, discussing some of the "big think" questions that intrigue himFurther reading: Fractal Geometry

La oss slippe unaturlig stråling

I Øst–Europa er grenseverdien satt til en 10 000-ende del av den vi har i Vesten. Denne forsiktighet er blitt latterliggjort og forskningsmessig «motbevist» av Strålevernet. Men i mai ga Europarådet anbefaling om å «redusere grenseverdien for innendørs mikrobølgestråling med en faktor på 10 000 i første omgang». I tillegg anbefales å «forby trådløst nett og bruk av mobiltelefon og trådløse fasttelefoner i klasserom og barnehager». Det økende antall barn med hjernesvulster har antagelig bidratt til ny forsiktighet. Her har selv motstand mot babycall blir oversett. Som engasjert i trafikksikring, helseskader ved røyking og bruk av amalgam har jeg, i begynnelsen av slikt helsearbeid, fått høre hvor hysteriske krav om endringer har vært. Som «konspirasjonsteoretiker» gjelder det nå også etter syv års engasjement for de EL–sensitive. - Berit ÅsFor meg er det revnende likegyldig om det er farlig med ikke-ioniserende stråling eller ei, selv om jeg er engstelig for min datter og eksponerer he…

Jeremy Rifkin on the Real Nature of Our Triple Crisis: Peak Globalization, Peak Oil, and 3 Degrees Climate Change

Let's Enter the Fractal World of Christopher Alexander!

In a Freudian sense, we are witnessing the return of the repressed. If you tell people for two decades that there is no alternative to the world in which they live, and if in the meantime you take away their income, their rights, their public services, and their last-remaining shreds of dignity, you can expect that psychological repression of revolutionary potential to come out in some other form sooner or later. If you repress the coherent emancipatory ideology of the masses, as the End of History was meant to do, you literally end up with the incoherent and a-political London riots. In this respect, the most important thing the Tunisian and Egyptian revolutions could have done was to help remind humanity that there actually is an alternative to the status quo — that there does exist some “outside” to unfettered global capitalism. - Jerome RoosPlease read the whole article: Jérôme E. Roos: The year 2011 marks the end of the End of History".

There exist an alternative to ideology…

Se verdens største utdødde hakkespett på film

"The Imperial Woodpecker", dette kan vel oversettes med noe slikt som imperiehakkespetten på norsk, holdt til i Mexicos gamle skoger. I dag er både den og skogene forsvunnet, og verden har blitt et fattigere sted. Lenge trodde man heller ikke at det fantes bilder eller film av denne fascinerende fuglen, inntil man oppsporet et 16 mm 1968-opptak av en tannlege fra Pennsylvania.

Les historien hos Science Daily, eller gå direkte til The Imperial Woodpecker Film.

How to Get from Here to There?

Michel Bauwens asked Marvin Brown, author of the P2P Foundation Book of the Year in 2010, i.e. of “Civilizing the Economy“, to give us an idea how we can get :from here to there...”

“How do we get from here to there—from where we are to where we want to be? One can imagine a civic economy where economic trends are moving toward making provisions for everyone and ensuring that future generations have the capacities to meet their needs. But how do we get there?

Perhaps we cannot make it. The here is protected by powerful interests. It works quite well for a few. At the same time, there are many, perhaps 5 to 6 billion who would move to “there” at a moments notice if they could. Still, as long as the ownership of property gives legitimacy to rule, it is doubtful if we will see the change that justice and sustainability require.


The Egyptian uprising, for example, was a sign of hope. They affirmed their human dignity and demanded recognition of their human rights. Western nations joined the…

Le Corbusier har vært en større ulykke for verden enn Hitler

Min lille by beliggende så vakkert til ved Mjøsa har Le Corbusiers disipler skamfert for lenge siden. I disse dager har de lagt sin elsk på Bjørvika, som forvandles fra industrihelvete til "image"-helvete, hvor stjernearkitektene fritt får utfolde sine ego. Ingen krig kunne gjort verre skade!

Noen vil hevde at Le Corbusier var et barn av sin tid. Tvert imot! VÅR TID ER ET BARN AV LE CORBUSIER!!!

Les Theodore Dalrymple's essay i City Journal: Do Sties Make Pigs? Until quite recently, I had assumed that the extreme ugliness of the city in which I live was attributable to the Luftwaffe. I imagined that the cheap and charmless high rise buildings which so disfigure the city-scape had been erected of necessity in great gaping holes left by Heinkel bombers. I had spent much of my childhood playing in deserted bomb shelters in public parks: and although I was born some years after the end of the war, that great conflagration still exerted a powerful hold on the imagination of Bri…

Gamle trehus er mest miljøvennlige

Les artikkelen i Aftenposten her.
Noe artikkelen ikke nevner er at gamle hus er langt mer menneskevennlige enn nye hus. Dette skyldes at de er evolverte strukturer, likesom naturen selv.

Rethinking Darwin to Uncover the Evolutionary Roots of Morality

Books by David Loye: 1) DARWIN’S LOST THEORY: BRIDGE TO A BETTER WORLD; 2) DARWIN’S 2nd REVOLUTION; Benjamin Franklin Press, 2010

Excerpted from a longer review in Tikkun by Dan Levine: “When most people think of evolution, the first thing that comes to mind is either survival of the fittest or selfish genes. Yet the psychologist and system theorist David Loye argues this is a misreading of the gist of evolutionary theory and the intent of that theory’s founder. Moreover, misreading Charles Darwin has severe social consequences: it fosters the belief that the worst side of humanity is bound to win.

Darwin’s ultimate interest, Loye argues, was in the evolution of human moral sensitivity. He adds that Darwin’s celebrated principle of natural selection was just the first stage on the way to moral development. Loye founded the Darwin Project, with a council of over sixty natural and social scientists, to promote the view that moral development is at the heart of evolution.


Grunnlovstrær i høstdrakt

Ble dirigert via den gamle E 6en i går, og stoppet ved gamle Nebbenes for å spise middag. Etterpå fikk jeg lyst til å ta noen bilder av grunnlovsbygningen, men der var det så mye restaureringsarbeider at det ikke ble noe greie på. Ruslet derfor en liten tur rundt i parken på Eidsvoll Verk nå på høsttampen. For full oppløsning av bildene klikk på bildeteksta.


Olje, vekstøkonomiens drivstoff

With constant economic growth, our money system is relatively happy; without growth, it becomes utterly despondent. Without constant economic growth, preferably in the range of 3% (or more!), the collective pile of debts cannot be serviced out of new growth and so they begin to default. - Chris Martenson Når avkastningen faller under tre prosent stopper kjerra! Oppbremsingen har begynt!! Er det ikke på tide vi begynner å tenke på hvordan vi da skal komme oss videre!!!

An Interview With Christopher Alexander

Wow! I just stumbled upon this great interview right now googeling the web. Thank you Rob Hopkins for making this interview!!!!

Read the interview on Energy Bulletin: An interview with "Pattern Language" author Christopher Alexander

Read the interview on Transition Culture: Exclusive to Transition Culture! An interview with Christopher Alexander

Policies for a Shareable City

Neal Gorenflo presents a very important 20-part project:

“The Policies for a Shareable City series will cover 20 policy areas to inspire discussion among citizens and city leaders. Through a partnership with Shareable, Janelle Orsi and the Sustainable Economies Law Center team have taken up the thread started by Lawrence Grodeska at SHARE San Francisco. They will cover food, transportation, housing, culture, governance, entrepreneurship, and more. At the bottom of this post is the series index which we’ll hyperlink as we publish each article. The hope is that each post prompts you to share ideas in comments and take action in your city. And please copy, remix, and share the policy proposals as you see fit.
Together the proposals represent the underpinnings of a larger vision in which the common wealth in cities is made accessible to all residents; where the free flow of resources among citizens is aided by law, the built environment, culture, nonprofits, government, and enterprise; and…

Six Proposed Demands for the Occupy Wall Street Movement

Saxed from the P2P-blog:
1. People over profit: An economic democracy is an economy that subordinates profit to people, not the other way around. 2. Stakeholders over shareholders: An economic democracy is an economic system in which the voices, rights, and interests of all economic stakeholders — including employees, stockholders, communities, ecosystems, other species and future generations — are represented. Unlike our current economy where shareholders are given primacy, in an economic democracy no one stakeholder is granted a disproportionate degree of power and privilege. 3. Better not bigger: In order to reorient the economy towards people and all stakeholders, we have to release it from the captivity of profit. In an economy geared towards GDP growth, the bottom line is the bottom line, and protecting it means suppressing wages, slashing payrolls, passing on costs to other people, other places, and other times. Most importantly, our economy has outgrown the physical limits of …

Jeg savner fortauet!

Personlig savner jeg fortauet. Hvordan kan man kose seg på en fortausrestaurant uten fortau? Kanskje har det noe å gjøre med Alexanders tredje "livsverdi"? BOUNDARIES is the way in which the field-like effect of a center is strengthened by the creation of a ring-like center, made of smaller centers which surround and intensify the first. The boundary also unites the center with the centers beyond it, thus strengthening it further. - Christopher Alexander
Kanskje er jeg negativ, men jeg reagerer også på det dominerende inntrykket av massive betongheller. Det er som jeg kan kjenne et snev av Le Corbusier. I et leserbrev i OA var det en som kalte nyskapningen "fra asfaltgate til betonggate". Jeg tror han har et poeng.