Monday, March 24, 2008

Net Users - The Next Billion

Intel Classmate low-cost laptops landing in stores in the Philippines, Intel (INTC) is saying that it will sell the $300 machines in the U.S. and Canada.

Mar 19 2008 11:03AM EDT

The Next Billion Net Users, Coming Fast

Technology companies are in a hurry to get the next billion people online, adding to the approximately 1.2 billion people already on the Net in some way. Two reports today show how that's coming along. In India, cell operators are adding 8 million subscribers a month -- in other words, adding the population of New York each month. Total Indian cell users is up to 246 million, nearing the entire population of the U.S. Of course, not all those cell customers are on phones that can tap the Internet, but surely a lot are.

Sunday, March 16, 2008

Tibet Riots

Cultural Genocide Is Taking Place

The Dalai Lama called Sunday for an international probe into China's crackdown on protesters in Tibet. "Whether the (Chinese) government there admits or not, there is a problem. There is an ancient cultural heritage that is facing serious danger," he said. "Whether intentionally or unintentionally, some kind of cultural genocide is taking place."

China's communist government is hoping Beijing's hosting of the Aug. 8-24 Olympics will boost its popularity at home as well as its image abroad. But the event has already attracted international scrutiny of China's human rights record and its pollution problems.

International criticism of the crackdown in Tibet so far has been mild, with no threats of an Olympic boycott or other sanctions. Secretary of State Condoleezza Rice called Sunday on China "to exercise restraint in dealing with the protests."

Rice said she was "concerned by reports of a sharply increased police and military presence in and around Lhasa." Her statement urged China to release those jailed for protesting.

International Olympic Committee president Jacques Rogge said Saturday he opposed an Olympic boycott over Tibet.

On the Net:

International Campaign for Tibet:

Chinese official news agency:

Tibet Daily:

Sunday, March 09, 2008



Earth movers

Pitching boomers housing that is green as their hair goes gray

By Stephanie I. Cohen

Last update: 3:33 p.m. EST Feb. 24, 2008

PRINCETON, N.J. (MarketWatch) -- Shea Homes, one of the nation's largest home builders, believes baby boomers are looking for communities that make an environmental difference.

This month, Shea announced the opening of Victoria Gardens, an "active lifestyle," or retirement, development in Florida sandwiched between Orlando and Daytona Beach. The homes were advertised as having a carbon footprint that is 20% to 30% less than that of a "typical household."

Billed as eco-friendly and energy-wise, the homes feature solar attic fans, green-fiber recycled insulation, motion-sensor triggered lighting, energy-efficient windows and appliances, and garages outfitted with electric-vehicle charging stations. Shea says it has focused on small, incremental green features that will collective add up to energy savings.

Housing developments that target baby boomers may be the next big push for the green housing market and statistics indicate this could be a good marriage. "There is no doubt that the green trend is going to accelerate more and more," said Rick Andreen, president of Shea Homes Active Lifestyle Communities division, in a recent interview.

Victoria Gardens marks Shea's debut in the Florida retirement market though the company is building similar homes in northern and southern California, Arizona, and Washington. The energy-efficient features are considered standard in these homes.
Other retirement communities from Texas to Maine are taking similar steps and adding green features to existing homes. An Army retirement community in San Antonio recently announced plans to install solar hot water systems in the community's 180 homes. Sea Coast Management Company, which manages retirement communities in Maine, is offering existing residents incentives to install solar hot water heaters and offering a Toyota Prius and/or a free solar hot water system to new customers purchasing a home.

Baby boomers, born between 1946 and 1964, grew up alongside the environmental movement of the 1960s and '70s. "These guys were at Woodstock," said Matthew Kahn, a professor at UCLA's Institute of the Environment. "This is the birth cohort that was at the environmental movement's summer of love."

In 2005, the U.S. Census Bureau estimated there were approximately 78.2 million baby boomers in America. A December 2007 survey by AARP found that roughly half of all boomers see themselves as environmental stewards, or "green boomers."

Besides being a large swath of the population, boomers are overwhelmingly homeowners. Boomers are also far more affluent than earlier generations of retirees, making it more likely that they will consider paying a premium for environmentally friendly housing features.

Read the whole article: