Thursday 11 December 2008

The Bean Vac battery operated vacuum coffee canister is apparently one of the most significant coffee accessories to hit the market in recent years. I know that leaving coffee beans open to the air will gradually degrade the beans and that ground coffee degrades faster. I know the importance of keeping beans fresh to preserve flavor! How do you do this in a home environment? Even if you purchase your beans fresh out of the roaster and they are packed in a one way valve bag, once you open the bag, the beans are exposed to the air and simply rolling up the bag will not keep the air out. We have always recommended using a vacuum coffee storage canister for storing coffee beans. Until now, this usually meant a bit of manual labor was involved pumping the air out by hand. With the Bean Vac, keeping your coffee fresher has never been easier. The Coffee BeanVac is simple and effective. Just place coffee beans inside, pull the handlebar shut, and watch the powerful motorized vacuum and soft silicone seal create a precise environment which fends off moisture, oxidation and acidity so your coffee stays fresher longer. A strong vacuum seal is created in just over a minute. A vacuum indicator button lets you see the vacuum seal activating. When the button depresses you know the vacuum is locked in.
I love the idea of this gadget; does it actaully work? Or am I just sucked in by the manufacturers information?
If you want one you can get them at Amazon - let me know how you get on.
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Tuesday 25 November 2008

What a surprise!

I have to confess I am plesently surprised with this film. Mamma Mia! is a movie based on a musical based on the songs of the pop group Abba, for something that is so far removed from the original group I expected this film to have an uneasy relationship with it's musical roots. However is a zesty, feel-good movie that will have you dancing in your seat and singing along if you aren't very careful.

So much so that there should be a health warning on the Mamma Mia DVD cover stating that the songs are liable to get stuck in your head after watching it.

The cinematography is breathtaking - the dazzling blues of the Mediterranean and idyllic locations add to the holiday-feel of the film.

Then of course there are the hit songs - the choreography is inventive and the seasoned cast (Pierce Brosnan, Colin Firth, Julie Walters and Christine Baranski) appear to have a blast - even if they can’t all sing; they imbue their performances with the ABBA spirit.

There’s no excuse for not knowing the words as there is the option to turn on the on-screen lyrics for all the songs. It's best viewed with a group of friends and lashings of cocktails.
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Thursday 20 November 2008

Want not - Waste not

The Kitchen Revolution
is a book which claims it can save you time and money and reduce your eco impact - with its seasonal shopping and cooking plans.

Stick rigidly to the plan and you will save money by using up all the food you buy; your food miles will go down because you're not wasting any and because the recipes are all seasonal; and energy consumption - yours and the cooker's - goes down because of all the recycling.

The main idea is that you do a weekly shop, then cook a meal from scratch on day 1. Day 2 and 3 are from leftovers but done well. Day 4 is a quick seasonal recipe. Day 5 is from your larder. Day 6 you cook twice of something as much and freeze half of it. Day 7 you eat something from the freezer you made a couple of weeks back.

It sounds like a brilliant plan - the recipes sound fantastic. So I'm going to order I have just ordered a copy


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Thursday 6 November 2008

Chrisitan Video Games?

I'd love to know wether it is really a good idea to have special 'christian versions' of normal video games. A case in point is Guitar Praise. Guitar parise is much like Guitar Hero.
Gutiar Praise adopts the same concept of "playing" rock tunes on an increasingly difficult level. But it inhabits a gentler world where a bad performance gets you mild clapping and gentle suggestions instead of the raucous boos and catcalls that accompany failure in Guitar Hero.

According to the game's description, "onscreen lyrics reflect Christian values (so that) vocalists can sing their hearts out as their friends play the guitar." As with Guitar Hero, players unlock new guitars and sounds as they progress through the game.

If your parents suddenly walk in, the lyrics will assure them at a glance that despite the hard rocking sound of these songs, they're Christian-approved for households where that's a concern.
Gameplay-wise, this game also differs from Guitar Hero in that there didn't appear to be any ties (also known as "hammer-ons," when you clamp down on a note to carry the sound from another note without strumming again). The whammy bar wasn't as responsive, either.

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Tuesday 4 November 2008

Premium Fuel

Imagine a world where you can select your fuel like you select a good wine. Choosing to fill up your car with a particularly fruity blend; one with plenty of body to give your car some low down grunt.
A zesty, full bodied, thermal cracked desert fuel, with wonderful balance. This fuel totally over-delivers on our hedonist's meter.

100 octane, straight run, and refined to perfection. Suitable for luxury sedans or any foreign luxury car equipped with GPS and/or engine with catalytic converter.

That world has now become a reality
Fine fuelling allows you to buy from among the best fuels available on the market.

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Monday 13 October 2008

The end times?

When I first saw this my first thought was 'cool, I want one of those', then of course I realised I wouldn't be able to fit it on my drive and the neighbours might complain.
This peice of artwork is constructed by Kuksi It seems he does a lot of this kind of stuff - some of it looks quite gross. However it appeals to me on some level, maybe it is the intricate detail, maybe it is the fact that it reminds me of some of the artwork in warhammer 40,000 which I used to really enjoy playing.

The church tank also reminds me of the following

'And Saint Attila raised the hand grenade up on high, saying, "O Lord, bless this Thy hand grenade that with it Thou mayest blow Thine enemies to tiny bits, in Thy mercy." And the Lord did grin and the people did feast upon the lambs and sloths and carp and anchovies and orangutans and breakfast cereals, and fruit bats and large chu... [At this point, the friar is urged by Brother Maynard to "skip a bit, brother"]

... And the Lord spake, saying, "First shalt thou take out the Holy Pin, then shalt thou count to three, no more, no less. Three shall be the number thou shalt count, and the number of the counting shall be three. Four shalt thou not count, neither count thou two, excepting that thou then proceed to three. Five is right out. Once the number three, being the third number, be reached, then lobbest thou thy Holy Hand Grenade of Antioch towards thy foe, who being naughty in my sight, shall snuff it." Amen.
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Friday 10 October 2008


It's never good when a major advocate for clean energy gets blocked my mainstream media.

ABC has allegedly blocked this ad by the We Can Solve It campaign, an ad begins to divulge facts about the oil industry and our ability to switch to renewable energy - facts that have political implications, especially leading up to the US elections.

As EcoGeek put it:

It is absolutely true that America's oil and coal lobbies have consistently blocked legislation and mis-represented facts about global warming to the American people. The travesty was when the oil lobby aired the "carbon is life" advertisement, not when the We Can Solve It campaign tried to set the record straight.

More on Big Oil:Link

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Wednesday 1 October 2008

Walking more damaging to the planet than going by car’

If you thought about it you would assume that walking was less damaging to the environment than driving - after all driving pumps out CO2 that has been naturally sequesterted for millions of years.

However walking does more than driving to cause global warming, a leading environmentalist has calculated. The sums were done by Chris Goodall, campaigning author of How to Live a Low-Carbon Life.

The sums were based on the greenhouse gases created by intensive beef production. “Driving a typical UK car for 3 miles [4.8km] adds about 0.9 kg [2lb] of CO2 to the atmosphere,” he said, a calculation based on the Government’s official fuel emission figures. “If you walked instead, it would use about 180 calories. You’d need about 100g of beef to replace those calories, resulting in 3.6kg of emissions, or four times as much as driving.

“The troubling fact is that taking a lot of exercise and then eating a bit more food is not good for the global atmosphere. Eating less and driving to save energy would be better.”

Food production is now so energy-intensive that more carbon is emitted providing a person with enough calories to walk to the shops than a car would emit over the same distance. The climate could benefit if people avoided exercise, ate less and became couch potatoes. Provided, of course, they remembered to switch off the TV rather than leaving it on standby.

Catching a diesel train is now twice as polluting as travelling by car for an average family, the Rail Safety and Standards Board admitted recently. Paper bags are worse for the environment than plastic because of the extra energy needed to manufacture and transport them, the Government says.

Fresh research published in New Scientistlast month suggested that 1kg of meat cost the Earth 36kg in global warming gases. The figure was based on Japanese methods of industrial beef production but Mr Goodall says that farming techniques are similar throughout the West.

What if, instead of beef, the walker drank a glass of milk? The average person would need to drink 420ml – three quarters of a pint – to recover the calories used in the walk. Modern dairy farming emits the equivalent of 1.2kg of CO2 to produce the milk, still more pollution than the car journey.

Cattle farming is notorious for its perceived damage to the environment, based on what scientists politely call “methane production” from cows. The gas, released during the digestive process, is 21 times more harmful than CO2 . Organic beef is the most damaging because organic cattle emit more methane.

Simply cutting out beef, or even meat, however, would be too modest a change. The food industry is estimated to be responsible for a sixth of an individual’s carbon emissions, and Britain may be the worst culprit.

“This is not just about flying your beans from Kenya in the winter,” Mr Goodall said. “The whole system is stuffed with energy and nitrous oxide emissions. The UK is probably the worst country in the world for this.

A chilled ready meal is a perfect example of where the energy is wasted. You make the meal, then use an enormous amount of energy to chill it and keep it chilled through warehousing and storage.”

The ideal diet would consist of cereals and pulses. “This is a route which virtually nobody, apart from a vegan, is going to follow,” Mr Goodall said. But there are other ways to reduce the carbon footprint. “Don’t buy anything from the supermarket,” Mr Goodall said, “or anything that’s travelled too far.”Link

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Jesus is no good with computers

I suppose this doesn't matter too much, after all Jesus saves so he won't have lost any data.
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Thursday 18 September 2008

Free Ebooks

I've really taken to Ebooks recently, it is easy to carry a whole lot with you on a teensy tiny menory card. I have 8Gb of storage on my phone. There are loads of places you can get Ebooks from - some less legal than others Project Gutenburg supply books that are out of copyright. supplys books which seem to be from their back catalogue - you have to register, but they are free.
There a re quite a few sites that you can buy books from - some of these have freebies too - is one such.
Ereader even provides the software to read the books (which is a really nice idea).
My favourtie reader software is by Gowerpoint and is called µBook.

If you have a phone with a decent screen try it out - it might be easier than you think.

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Wednesday 17 September 2008

Damascus Razor

HOMMAGE has created a limited edition straight razor forged from fantastic Damascus Steel. Combining the best qualities of hard and malleable steel, layer upon layer is folded onto the next, each becoming visible through a meticulous process of grinding and polishing. Hard, durable and incredibly sharp, the characteristic rose and torsion pattern attests to its superior craftsmanship.

I really love the look of Damascene steel blades, I'd love a razor of this kind (maybe for christmas if Santa has a large wallet and I've been really good). £15,000 would be better put towards my mortgage.
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Thursday 4 September 2008

Hydrogen Elephant

How do we save the planet ? Is a hydrogen economy the way to go? How do we distribute the hydrogen ? A tanker for petrol carries about enough petrol (or diesel) to fill up 300 cars. The equivalent size tanker for hydrogen can only carry enough for 10 cars.
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Wednesday 3 September 2008

Cause and effect

I have often wondered how people (whether they be members of the public, statisticians or scientists) decide on cause and effect.
For example
Whenever ice cream sales rise, so do shark attacks.
As more economists are recruited to the Treasury, inflation rises.
Are shark attacks caused by people eating more ice cream? maybe there is some chemical compound released from the skin after consumption of ice cream which causes a shark to go into a frenzy and attack the consumer or is it more likely that more ice cream is consumed at the same time as more people go in the sea (i.e. summer) and it is the increased numbers off people in the sea which causes an increase in shark attacks?

The lesson: This is a foolish case of a simple error - the assumption that things happening after an event must be caused by it.

Everyone examines data for evidence that their side is right. If a statistical morsel seems to our taste, the temptation is to swallow it. 

Such zeal produces, in this case, the following logic:

Here's event A - a smoking ban.
Here's event B - a selective fall in heart attacks.
Therefore, A caused B.

Sometimes the numbers go up, sometimes down. If you simply take the period, or the place, in which the numbers go the way you want, but disregard the rest, you are likely to read meaning into nothing.

This is one problem with arguments about causality, the belief that any change must have a principal cause, when it may be the result of the many causes that produce nothing more meaningful than random variation.

The key is not to stop looking for the cause with the first plausible link you find. Keep your imagination restless for other causes, or the possibility of chance, and it will serve you well.


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Wednesday 16 July 2008

Server Error

What happens when you use a web translation service without knowing what you are doing?

This does

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Largest Subwoofer in the world?

The Biggest SUBWOOFER of the WORLD, for the most esoteric Audio and AUDIO-VIDEO Room of the World. Not exctly portable but maybe the kind of thing you might want to think about if you are building a new church?

Royal Device has on its own developped and built in Italy the biggest subwoofer of the world for an AUDIO/VIDEO room that can be also considered as the greatest AUDIO ROOM for private music listening of the world. The Royal Device audio room belongs to Roberto - the audio designer who made it.

The audio reproduction is focused on the speakers output capability more than electric power output of the amplifiers with no need of KWatts power supply lines, releasing more than 110 dB/1W/1 meter sensitivity starting from below 10 Hz focused on the listening position.

  • SUBWOOFER horns are built underneath the floor in a cavity of 1 meter deep. Each horn is driven by 8 x 18" (47 cm) woofers. A total of 16 woofers.
  • Each horn is 9.5 meters long and has a floor mouth area of 2.2 square meters and reproduce starting from 10 Hertz FULL POWER. The real mouth area IS NOT the one on the floor. The real mouth have to be considered together with the side vertical frontal panels. The total horn is calculated onto the listening point considering the side walls and the ceiling loadings. This reduces the floor mouth that is not in open air.
  • The SUBWOOFER efficiency is 120dB/ 1 Watt/1 meter. So the need of external regulation to adapt to the remaining audio system. The total electrical capability of the 16 x 48 cm woofers is about 400 W peak power per woofer that means about 400 x 16 = 6400 W peak total (practically uselss). Each woofer features a 100 mm coil. The real maximum power fed to both subhorn measured with an oscilloscope at the highest musical peak was 6 watts per channel when a pair of tube amps were used to drive the 16 LAuras, while up to date the electric power can reach 60 watts per channel using the 4 x 50watts/ch BLU EYES amps. In this conditions, peak levels are much higher and undistorted than any live concert at all. Walls and ceiling seems to fall down, but fortunately don't. The sound pressure is concentrated at the listening point and stopped by a 2 meters high woolglass anechoic wall on the back of the listening position. We should remember that the total diaphragm surface of the woofers is 2.89 square meters (8.67 square feet) and with the drivers horn loaded (not direct radiating), distortion at 60 watts is practically negligible. If for instance the real maximum rated power (6400 watt) would be used the pressure level would reach 160 dB, but I wonder who could survive. Not even the house built in steel & concrete maybe would stand up.
  • SUBWOOFER horns are built underneath the floor in a cavity of 1 meter deep. Each horn is driven by 8 x 18" (47 cm) woofers. A total of 16 woofers.
  • Each horn is 9.5 meters long and has a floor mouth area of 2.2 square meters and reproduce starting from 10 Hertz FULL POWER. The real mouth area IS NOT the one on the floor. The real mouth have to be considered together with the side vertical frontal panels. The total horn is calculated onto the listening point considering the side walls and the ceiling loadings. This reduces the floor mouth that is not in open air.

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Monday 2 June 2008

Viking biker

"They are latex rubber covers that you fit on your open face helmet to make you look very different. They turn heads, create !*# comments & lots of smiles....and frighten old ladies, especially if worn with a skull fleece facemask and dark goggles."

I really love this idea. They just look so cool (and quite inexpensive too).

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Friday 30 May 2008

Transient time

This clock is a fantastic reminder about the transient nature of time.

It was created by Christiaan Postma who wrote "The starting point with this project was a personal study about form & time. I put together more than 150 individual clockworks and made them work together to become one clock. I show the progress of time by letting the numbers be written in words by the clockworks. Reading clockwise, the time being is visible through a word and readable by the completeness of the word, 12 words from “one” to “twelve”."

Composed of more than 150 individual clocks mounted to a 140 cm x 140 cm panel, hour and minute dials are clustered in a seemingly haphazard pattern. In actuality, the groupings have been meticulously arranged and the times coordinated so that when the time is say, twelve o' clock, a cluster of individual clocks at the top of the panel spell the word twelve. These groupings have been laid out to recreate the twelve hours of an analog clock. What happens when it's 3:30? Well, as three begins to pass into four, the former starts to disintegrate into illegible lines, while the latter starts to take the shape of an actual word, in this case, four. It's an engaging representation of the ephemeral quality of time, and a slow reminder of its inevitable passage.
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Friday 23 May 2008

Secret tunnel under the Atlantic Ocean

"Hardly anyone knows that a secret tunnel runs deep beneath the Atlantic Ocean. In May 2008, more than a century after it was begun, the tunnel will finally be completed. Immediately afterwards, an extraordinary optical device called a Telectroscope will be installed at both ends which will miraculously allow people to see right through the Earth from London to New York and vice versa."
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Tuesday 22 April 2008

International motor spy

THE UK Home Secretary secretively signed a "special certificate" last year that gives foreign security agencies real-time access to traffic camera images and related data monitoring British motorists on highways throughout the UK.

Routine journeys carried out by millions of British motorists can be monitored by authorities in the United States and other enforcement agencies across the world under anti-terrorism rules introduced discreetly by Jacqui Smith.

On July 17th 2007 Miss Smith made a staement to Parliment detailing the exemptions for police from the 1998 Data Protection Act. She announced that British anti-terrorism police could access "real time" images from cameras used in the running of London's congestion charge.

However she did not mention other changes that would permit material to be sent outside the European Economic Area (EEA) to the authorities in the US and elsewhere.

A special certificate signed by the home secretary less than two weeks previously

A spokesman for Richard Thomas, the information commissioner, confirmed that the certificate had been worded so that the images of private cars, as well as registration numbers, could be sent outside to countries such as the USA.

Last night, Nick Clegg, the Liberal Democrat leader, said: "This confirms that this Government is happy to hand over potentially huge amounts of information on British citizens under the catch-all pretext of 'national security'."
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Friday 11 April 2008

Flying Man

Yves Rossy, recently achieved a landmark which went largely unheralded. Rossy’s feats might well go down among the most daring as well as momentous in aviation history. Check out these amazing photos.

The former military pilot, 45, who flies Airbuses for Swissair, spent five years developing his wings for his flying man project but went one better with his ‘jet-man’ project by adding two kerosene-powered jet engines to his original wing design to become the first man to fly like a bird: horizontally.

"It would be a great device for James Bond so he can go behind enemy lines," he said. He also holds a record for dangling from the wing of a biplane, and lists his hobbies as "bare-foot water-skiing, wakeboard, hydro-speed, delta flying and paragliding, snowboarding and aerobatic flying". In 2002 Yves contacted the worlds leading model jet engine Company, Jet-Cat, based in Germany.

The company, which specialises in motorising miniature planes, quickly showed its interest to help Yves install engines onto his wings. Many tests were made with different engines, different air intakes, and they even had to test at altitudes reaching 4000 m as these particular engines had never been tested before at such an altitude.

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Wednesday 2 April 2008

Foggy landing?

On Monday an Air New Zealand flight from Fiji to Auckland had to be fumigated.
MAF (ministry of agriculture food and fisheries) require that any aircraft without a bio-security certificate fumigate the plane every time it arrives in New Zealand. The bio-security certificate had expired by a few hours .

The fumigation left people with a sore throats and caused a baby to gag and vomit.

A construction engineer on board the plane said the MAF officers took about five minutes to fumigate the plane before leaving the passengers to sit in "a thick fog" as they sealed the door shut behind them.

"It was pretty concerning to see that and there were other passengers having to hold their noses and cover their mouths," he said. "It was something akin to a sauna, not the heat but the look of the place and the longer it went on the foggier it became, it was ridiculous.

Air New Zealand spokeswoman Di Paton said biosecurity certificates on its aircraft did expire "very occasionally". But she said the airline did not consider it had made a mistake in terms of not having its biosecurity clearances before passengers boarded, saying "these kind of things happen".
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Sorry, been a bit busy recently. Looking at the last post I realised it has been over a month since my last post. I'll try and make it once a week in the future
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Wednesday 27 February 2008

Candy before swine

I have to admit I really like Pork scratchings, crispy curls of pork skin they sound disgusting - but I ask you do you like crackling on a joint of roast pork?

I also really like chocolate, almost any kind - high cocoa solids, milk chocolate you name it, I like it.

So how about if you put them together?

They come in milk, dark and white chocolate - curiously the chocolate is sugar free. Why?? You have Pork rinds why not go all out? A little sugar? not really an issue.

I guess if you can have chocolate-covered bacon and gummi bacon, you can have chocolate-covered pork rinds.
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Tuesday 26 February 2008

Suits you sir!

A 44-year-old Dutch artist, Desiree Palmen, decided to attempt the same visual deception as a chameleon.

The difference being that she uses a method that requires a huge amount of effort and attention to detail. She makes cotton suits and paints the camouflage on by hand, painstakingly matching it to the chosen background. Either she or a model then poses in the suit in the chosen place.

"It takes hours for her to paint the suits. First she takes photographs of the scene then, back in the studio, she meticulously transfers the detail on to the cotton suit with acrylic paints."

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Monday 11 February 2008

Augmented Reality

Thanks to BMW's augmented reality project fixing a car could become easier than assembling a flat pack desk from Ikea

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Tuesday 5 February 2008

Fast Carbon or Carbon Fast

The Church of England is urging people to cut down on carbon, rather than chocolate, for Lent this year.

Two senior bishops and development agency Tearfund have joined together to call for a cut in personal carbon use for each of the 40 days of Lent.

The Bishop of Liverpool, James Jones, who is also vice-president of Tearfund, and the Bishop of London, Richard Chartres, have launched the "carbon fast" to reduce carbon emissions.

The 40-day plan lists simple energy-saving actions that can lead towards a lighter carbon footprint, including snubbing plastic bags, giving the dishwasher a day off, insulating the hot-water tank and checking the house for drafts.

Participants are asked to begin the carbon fast by removing one light bulb from a prominent place in the home and live without it for 40 days, as a constant visual reminder during Lent of the need to cut energy. On the final day of the fast, people are encouraged to replace the missing bulb with an energy-saving bulb.

Jones said: "Traditionally people have given up things for Lent. This year we are inviting people to join us in a carbon fast. It is the poor who are already suffering the effects of climate change. To carry on regardless of their plight is to fly in the face of Christian teaching.

"The tragedy is that those with the power to do something about it are least affected, whilst those who are most affected are powerless to bring about change," he added. "There's a moral imperative on those of us who emit more than our fair share of carbon to rein in our consumption."

Figures from Tearfund, which is helping communities cope with the impacts of climate change around the world, highlight the contrast between carbon emissions in the developed and developing world. A total of 9.5 tonnes of carbon dioxide is emitted per person each year in the UK, compared with in 0.067 tons in Ethiopia and 0.24 in Bangladesh.

There has been a rising chorus on climate change from churches in recent years. The Church of England has already committed itself to reducing carbon emissions by 60% by 2050 through its Shrinking the Footprint initiative.

Chartres, the 132nd Bishop of London and the Church of England's third most senior figure after the Archbishops of Canterbury and York, has previously said that Christians have a moral duty to save the planet. In 2006 he pledged not to fly for a year, saying that "making selfish choices such as flying on holiday or buying a large car" were a "symptom of sin".

Last year, the Vatican also hosted a conference on climate change, where Pope Benedict urged bishops, scientists and politicians to "respect creation" while "focusing on the needs of sustainable development".

The full list of pledges for the carbon fast:

Day one
(Ash Wednesday.) Remove one light bulb and live without it for the next 40 days.

Day two
Check your house for draughts with a ribbon or feather. If it flutters, buy a draught excluder.

Day three
Tread lightly – whether that's by foot, by bike, on to a bus or on the gas as you drive. Find a way to reduce carbon dioxide emissions when you travel today.

Day four
Are you recycling everything possible? Really – everything? Look into it today.

Day five
Can you talk about your Carbon Fast at church today? Encourage others to join in.

Day six
Turn your central heating thermostat down by one degree.

Day seven
Say au revoir to standby. Check that all electrical equipment is switched off when not in use. The TV alone will save a hefty 20kg of carbon dioxide per year.

Day eight
Unplug your mobile phone charger: it uses electricity even when it's not charging.

Day nine
Climate change isn't a distant threat – it's affecting poor communities now. Pray for Tearfund's work to help vulnerable communities adapt to the changing weather.

Day 10
Give your dishwasher a day off or promote it to a Grade A energy efficient appliance.

Day 11
Use local shops or farmers' markets ( instead of driving to out-of-town shopping parks. They will thank you; supermarkets won't notice your absence.

Day 12
Tell politicians to take action on climate change today. Check out Tearfund's campaign work at

Day 13
Put the heat on your electricity or gas suppliers and ask them if they have a green plan. Make the switch and feel cosy.

Day 14
Take a shower instead of a bath: you'll heat less water.

Day 15
Snub plastic bags. Get into the habit of taking your rucksack to the supermarket or go retro with a trolley. Ask your supermarket to remove unnecessary packaging.

Day 16
Switch off lights as you leave the room.

Day 17
Only fill your kettle with as much water as you need.

Day 18
Cut the air miles. Don't consume any food that you know has been imported by plane (apart from Fairtrade products).

Day 19
Grace Maglasey and her husband Andrew struggle to grow enough food because their village in Malawi is caught in a cycle of floods and droughts. Join in with Grace's prayer today: "We pray that those of us who farm should harvest a lot of food so that this year we will not have hunger. In the name of Jesus, Amen."

Day 20
Compost. Put the nutrients from food waste back into the soil – not into a methane-emitting landfill.

Day 21
Only run your washing machine when you have a full load.

Day 22
Find one way to save paper today: re-use an old envelope or print double-sided.

Day 23
Turn the taps off. In one day a hot, dripping tap could fill a bath.

Day 24
Counsel your local council. Thank them for their recycling facilities but ask them if they could provide any more.

Day 25
Who works hardest in the house? Mum? Dad? No, the fridge. It's churning away 24/7. Treat it to a good de-icing to make sure it's running efficiently.

Day 26
"Love does no harm to its neighbour" Romans 13:10. But while our lifestyles consume more and more energy, our poorer neighbours are suffering. Reflect on ways to love our neighbours in our increasingly connected world.

Day 27
Pressure a car owner to check their tyre pressures. Low tyre pressure means high fuel consumption.

Day 28
Do a home energy check at or call 0800 512 012 for a paper copy. You could save up to £250 a year on bills.

Day 29
Run your washing machine at 30 degrees. This uses 40% less electricity than running at 40 degrees.

Day 30
Find out a new fact about the impact of climate change today. Amaze your friends.

Day 31
Fit aluminium foil behind your radiator – allowing you to turn the radiator down and save £10 a year per radiator.

Day 32
Any old iron? If they're on their last legs replace old electrical appliances with energy-efficient models. They could save a third of the energy.

Day 33
Have an embrace-the-silence Sunday. Turn off everything. No TV, no radio, no ringtones, no cars. It'll be good for the soul.

Day 34
Tell the Mailing Preference Service that you want to stop junk mail. Call 0845 7034599 or visit Sign up to Tearfund's e-newsletter Twelve at

Day 35
Put an insulation jacket on your hot-water tank. If everyone does, we'll cut enough carbon dioxide to fill 148,000 hot-air balloons.

Day 36
Re-use an item you would have thrown away – such as a jam jar, an envelope or an ice-cream container.

Day 37
Put a lid on it. That's pans when cooking; and use a kettle to boil water.

Day 38
Draw the curtains to keep the heat in.

Day 39
Could your church be greener? Talk to your church leaders. Tearfund can help – visit the site.

Day 40
Replace your missing bulb with an energy-saving lightbulb. Over its lifetime, you will save 60kg of carbon dioxide per year and up to £60. Make a personal pledge to serve others by pursuing a more sustainable way of life.

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Monday 28 January 2008

The Bible According To Google Earth

Moses and the parting of the Red Sea

This artwork is the result of The Glue Society, the Glue Society is a creative collective based in Sydney.

The Glue Society’s James Dive - “We like to disorientate audiences a little with all our work. And with this piece we felt technology now allows events which may or may not have happened to be visualized and made to appear dramatically real,” “As a method of representation satellite photography is so trusted, it has been interesting to mess with that trust.”

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Thursday 3 January 2008

"God doesn't do waste"

Rowan Williams the current Archbishop of Canterbury has released his New Year message on Youtube. The text of the message can be found on his website.

I have a lot of time for Rowan Williams and mostly agree with what he says. In particular I want to quote the last paragraph or two
"Perhaps a good resolution for the New Year would be to keep asking what world we want to pass on to the next generation – indeed, to ask whether we have a real and vivid sense of that next generation.

A lot of the time, we just don’t let ourselves think about the future with realism. A culture of vast material waste and emotional short-termism is a culture that is a lot more fragile than it knows. How much investment are we going to put in towards a safer and more balanced future?

A big question. But too big to avoid.

And if we feel a bit paralysed by just how big it is – well, we can at least start by a visit this week to the nearest recycling bins.

God bless you all in this New Year; may you have patience for the long view – confident that God takes the long view of you and isn’t going to give up."

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Wednesday 2 January 2008

Literally biblically

The Year of Living Biblically is written by A. J. Jacobs, he "recently spent a year trying to follow all 700 plus rules he found in the Bible. These rules ranged from the obvious Ten Commandments to the more obscure details of Old Testament laws, which ultra orthodox Jews might follow: leaving side hair uncut, dwelling in huts on certain holidays, strict dietary routines."

To give some idea of the physical transformation he underwent, the book offers this photo.

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