Anti-Pirate Robots!

I was watching on the news tonight the story about the American crew on board another container vessel that was overcome by pirates off the coast of Somalia and it reminded me of this cool new fire-fighting “robot” the Red Army developed recently.

Maybe GM could start building some of these…

E-stonia

Here’s a breath of fresh air for those of us keen on the concept of digital democracy… “A digital revolution is turning the tiny European nation of Estonia into a nation of Internet innovators. Estonians have put their digital identities onto their national identification cards, and much more.”

From Michael Cross writing in the Guardian last year:

Estonia is a special case because the Baltic state has one of the world’s most advanced electronic administrations. On independence, it took advantage of small size and made a clean sweep of obsolete Soviet bureaucracy, installing a state-of-the art government machine. For the past few years, it has been hailed as an exemplary e-government, where citizens and businesses enthusiastically sign on to pay taxes, notify changes of circumstances and vote online.

Voting online… What an absolutely crazy unworkable idea! Heh.

Inside the Financial Fiasco

Debt Trap: NBC’s Dateline looks into a fundamental economic problem: the debt epidemic. Here’s a couple of excerpts with reporter Chris Hansen interviewing Harvard law professor Elizabeth Warren (who’s also now head of the Congressional Oversight Panel of the EESA). I just love Warren. She’s a real straight-shooter.

The entire program (one hour, broken up into 22 parts) can be viewed here. The second half of the show called “Mortgage Madness” examines how bad loans and greed wrecked the U.S. economy, featuring interviews with Countrywide insiders and whistleblowers who had never spoken publicly before. Interesting if not exactly news.

Thanks to Dani (the “Princess of Pleasuretown”) for all the hard work uploading and cataloging these (and much other good stuff beside, it should be noted).