Ethan Zuckerman remains my No. 1 favourite blogger of all times, and given how much I struggle to update GlobaLab at least 2-3 times a week, while trying to work and retain a decent social life, I am in awe at his amazing prolificacy.
A quick browse at his last few entries would be enough to feed an average person’s brain for 6 months. Over the last few days, he’s been busy reporting from the PopTech conference, which he describes as “the annual three-day gathering of scientists, inventors, geeks, philosophers and thinkers in coastal Maine“. The event is a catwalk for amazing projects and ideas that are truly transforming the world. If you haven’t followed the event, you can read Ethan’s posts on some of the most interesting presentations, including (but there are more):
- Chris Jordan’s images of consumerism, trying to convey the sheer absurdity of our waste-prone societies;
- Jessica Flannery’s presentation of Kiva, the online-based initiative that is rocking the micro-credit world;
- Paul Polak’s designs for the rural poor, on which Paul and PSD had already commented;
- Adrian Bowyer’s breeding machines, which bring us a step closer to the Matrix (watchout, Jon!);
- Louanne Brizendine’s study of male and female brains, which won’t please those advocating gender equality;
- John Shearer’s research into wireless power transmission, which might one day move beyond lighting Christmas trees;
- Sheila Kennedy’s portable light systems for the developing world, adopted by Mexican women to read and cook meals into the night;
- Jonathan Harris’ digital story telling, and his “We feel fine” collection of online human emotions;
- Dan Gilbert’s analysis of happiness and risk, which tells us – basically – that humans are dumb and selfish;
- Chris Luebkeman‘s study of sustainable vs. unsustainable cities, which pitches Ski Dubai against Dongtan Eco City (guess who wins?);
- Claire Nouvian‘s observations of the deep oceans, that reveal alarming damages by human activities to deep sea ecosystems;
- Victoria Hale’s non-profit drug company One World Health, reminiscent of the $1 ASAQ malaria treatment;
- A conversation on Islam facilitated by John Esposito, that tells us that Americans hate Muslims (no, really?);
- and finally Zainab Salbi’s presentation on Women for Women International, which is helping women who have survived war rebuild their lives.
It took me good part of the day to read them all, and there are many more celebrity bloggers who reported from the event, including BoingBoing, Next Billion, and a few (but not many) non-English speaking bloggers.
If this isn’t enough for you, check out Ethan’s earlier post about a new initiative to fight counterfeit pharmaceuticals in Ghana (hopefully soon the whole of Africa), mPedigree, which will use mobile phones to track drugs from their original producers all the way to the pharmacy shelves, allowing each buyer in the chain to ensure that they’re dealing with a legitimate product. Or check out the entry in which he takes a good shot at unravelling the complex situation in Somalia, in response to the Onion’s eye-opening video Situation in Nigeria Seems Pretty Complex, a must see for all Africanists:
What can I say? Ethan, you are my personal hero!!!