The Internet - The first Worldwide Tool of Unification ("The End of History")

" ... Now I give you something that few think about: What do you think the Internet is all about, historically? Citizens of all the countries on Earth can talk to one another without electronic borders. The young people of those nations can all see each other, talk to each other, and express opinions. No matter what the country does to suppress it, they're doing it anyway. They are putting together a network of consciousness, of oneness, a multicultural consciousness. It's here to stay. It's part of the new energy. The young people know it and are leading the way.... "

" ... I gave you a prophecy more than 10 years ago. I told you there would come a day when everyone could talk to everyone and, therefore, there could be no conspiracy. For conspiracy depends on separation and secrecy - something hiding in the dark that only a few know about. Seen the news lately? What is happening? Could it be that there is a new paradigm happening that seems to go against history?... " Read More …. "The End of History"- Nov 20, 2010 (Kryon channelled by Lee Carroll)

"Recalibration of Free Choice"– Mar 3, 2012 (Kryon Channelling by Lee Carroll) - (Subjects: (Old) Souls, Midpoint on 21-12-2012, Shift of Human Consciousness, Black & White vs. Color, 1 - Spirituality (Religions) shifting, Loose a Pope “soon”, 2 - Humans will change react to drama, 3 - Civilizations/Population on Earth, 4 - Alternate energy sources (Geothermal, Tidal (Paddle wheels), Wind), 5 – Financials Institutes/concepts will change (Integrity – Ethical) , 6 - News/Media/TV to change, 7 – Big Pharmaceutical company will collapse “soon”, (Keep people sick), (Integrity – Ethical) 8 – Wars will be over on Earth, Global Unity, … etc.) - (Text version)

“…5 - Integrity That May Surprise…

Have you seen innovation and invention in the past decade that required thinking out of the box of an old reality? Indeed, you have. I can't tell you what's coming, because you haven't thought of it yet! But the potentials of it are looming large. Let me give you an example, Let us say that 20 years ago, you predicted that there would be something called the Internet on a device you don't really have yet using technology that you can't imagine. You will have full libraries, buildings filled with books, in your hand - a worldwide encyclopedia of everything knowable, with the ability to look it up instantly! Not only that, but that look-up service isn't going to cost a penny! You can call friends and see them on a video screen, and it won't cost a penny! No matter how long you use this service and to what depth you use it, the service itself will be free.

Now, anyone listening to you back then would perhaps have said, "Even if we can believe the technological part, which we think is impossible, everything costs something. There has to be a charge for it! Otherwise, how would they stay in business?" The answer is this: With new invention comes new paradigms of business. You don't know what you don't know, so don't decide in advance what you think is coming based on an old energy world. ..."
(Subjects: Who/What is Kryon ?, Egypt Uprising, Iran/Persia Uprising, Peace in Middle East without Israel actively involved, Muhammad, "Conceptual" Youth Revolution, "Conceptual" Managed Business, Internet, Social Media, News Media, Google, Bankers, Global Unity,..... etc.)

German anti-hate speech group counters Facebook trolls

German anti-hate speech group counters Facebook trolls
Logo No Hate Speech Movement

Bundestag passes law to fine social media companies for not deleting hate speech

Honouring computing’s 1843 visionary, Lady Ada Lovelace. (Design of doodle by Kevin Laughlin)

Thursday, April 28, 2011

NTT Communications Group to Join World IPv6 Day Trial

Antara News, Adityawarman, Thu, April 28 2011

Related News

TOKYO, Apr. 28 (ANTARA/Kyodo JBN-AsiaNet) --

NTT Communications (NTT Com) and its three subsidiaries of NTT Plala, NTT PC Communications and NTT America jointly announced on April 28 that they will participate in World IPv6 Day, a worldwide testing of the IPv6 protocol, to demonstrate its readiness to ensure successful transition from the IPv4 environment.

Sponsored and organized by the Internet Society (ISOC) and major content providers such as Google and Facebook, the event is a 24-hour testing of public IPv6 deployment starting on June 8, 2011. Participants will enable IPv6 on their main Websites for 24 hours, providing their Web content over IPv6 while testing connections to isolate any possible issues that may affect users in the IPv6 environment.

NTT Communications Group has been a leading contributor to the IPv6 deployment ever since the company helped the Internet Engineering Task Force (IETF) to establish the IPv6 basic protocol in 1995, and participated in a number of projects led by respective governments including the IPv6 Information Appliance Trial in Japan and 6NET hosted by the EU. NTT Com Group is also noted for launching the world's first commercial IPv6 service in 2001, OCN IPv6 Tunnel Connection Service, in Japan.

Today, IPv6 technologies are deployed in various content delivery services of NTT Com Group, including NTT Com's emergency earthquake news flash and NTT Plala's Hikari-TV with 1.4 million subscribers. Overseas, NTT Com's global backbone was the first network of its kind to offer a commercial dual-stack IPv6 transit service, initially in the United States and later globally. The company's highly experienced IPv6 engineers remain in the forefront of IPv6 implementation.

At a news conference on February 3, 2011 in Miami, Florida, the Internet Corporation for Assigned Names and Numbers (ICANN) joined the Number Resources Organization (NRO), the Internet Architecture Board (IAB) and the Internet Society in announcing that the pool of first-generation Internet addresses has now been completely emptied. During the conference, Rod Beckman, President and CEO of ICANN mentioned NTT as a telco leading the charge and adopting IPv6 to move to the new protocol.

About NTT Communications Corporation
Please visit

Source: NTT Communications Corporation

Related Article:

TomTom to end police access to data

RNW, 27 April 2011

Navigation systems company TomTom has announced it will change its licensing conditions to prevent users' travel data being used by the police.

The CEO of the Dutch company, Harold Goddijn, was reacting to earlier reports that the travel data collected by the company and made available to local and regional government in the Netherlands was also being used by the police. Some police forces have been using the information to plan their roadside speed traps.

"We did not anticipate this kind of use and many of our customers are not happy about it" says the company statement issued on Wednesday. "We will therefore be adding conditions to our licence agreements to prevent this kind of use in future."

TomTom is the largest producer of navigation equipment for cars and mobile phones in Europe, but is behind market leader Garmin in the United States. It employs some 3,500 people and has offices in Europe, the US and Taiwan.

Related Articles:

Apple Explains iPhone Tracking, Promises Fix

iPhones track Wi-Fi hotspots and cell towers, not users, Apple said in answering critics, while also promising to fixing a bug that kept too much data.

By Thomas Claburn, InformationWeek, April 27, 2011

Apple on Tuesday responded to the controversy surrounding its handling of location data on the iPhone and denied tracking iPhone users' whereabouts. The company attributed the volume of stored location data to a software bug, and committed to encrypting the data on iPhones while eliminating it from backups in a forthcoming software update.

Apple's explanation arrives following a letter of inquiry sent on Monday by the House Energy and Commerce Committee to Apple CEO Steve Jobs. The letter seeks an explanation of Apple's location data policies in light of press reports about the presence of location data on iPhones. While the initial report last week about the discovery of location data on iPhones was subsequently revealed to be old news in the forensics community, the issue has continued to fester in the absence of a clear and comprehensive response from Apple. A lawsuit accusing Apple of violating privacy and computer fraud laws through its location data practices was filed in Florida last week.

Apple accepts some blame for situation, stating in a note posted on its website on Wednesday that "the creators of this new technology (including Apple) have not provided enough education about these issues to date."

Disavowing any interest in tracking the locations of iPhones, Apple described its data gathering as an attempt to build a crowd-sourced database of Wi-Fi hotspots and cell towers to hasten location calculations, which are useful in apps that utilize location services and in core phone functions.

"Calculating a phone's location using just GPS satellite data can take up to several minutes," Apple explained. "iPhone can reduce this time to just a few seconds by using Wi-Fi hotspot and cell tower data to quickly find GPS satellites, and even triangulate its location using just Wi-Fi hotspot and cell tower data when GPS is not available (such as indoors or in basements)."

Although the location data stored on iPhones corresponds to hotspots and cell towers (some of which may be as many as 100 miles away from the iPhone user), rather than the geographic locations of iPhone users, many location records may still be closely aligned with the user's actual location at the time the data is recorded.

Apple said that when this data is transmitted to the company it is encrypted and anonymous. However, it acknowledged while the cache of hotspot and location data it is not encrypted, but instead is protected through obscurity, which is regarded in the security industry as a dubious security strategy. Nor is the iTunes backup of the cache encrypted, unless specified to be so by the user.

To remedy the situation, Apple has promised to release an iOS update in a few weeks that reduces the crowd-sourced database so that it stores seven days of data instead of a year's worth, stops backing up the database cache in iTunes, and deletes the cache when the Location Services option is disabled. In addition, the hotspot and cell tower database that resides on iPhones will be encrypted in the next major iOS release, which is likely to be several months from now.

Apple also said that it is collecting anonymous crowd-sourced traffic data in order to offer an improved traffic service to iPhone users in the coming years. Presently, iPhone users have access to Google-provided traffic data through the Maps application that comes pre-installed on every iPhone.

Since Apple and Google began viewing each other as competitors in August 2009, when then Google CEO Eric Schmidt resigned from Apple's board of directors, it has been widely assumed that Apple will eventually seek to revise or replace its software and services that depend on Google. Apple's acquisition of mapping companies Placebase and Poly9 have only strengthened such speculation.

Related Articles:

Wednesday, April 27, 2011

The Netherlands Ranks #1 Worldwide in Penetration for Twitter and Linkedin

Hyves Maintains Position as Top Social Networking Site in the Netherlands Despite Facebook’s Rapid Advances

London, UK, 26 April, 2011 – comScore, Inc. (NASDAQ: SCOR), a leader in measuring the digital world, today released a study of social networking usage in the Netherlands based on the comScore Media Metrix service. The study reveals that the Dutch social networking market continues to grow strongly as sites like Facebook, Twitter and Linkedin extend their respective footprints in the market.

“The social networking market in the Netherlands is really quite unique and full of interesting storylines,” said Mike Read, svp and managing director of comScore Europe. “It is one of the few markets remaining where a local social networking player [Hyves] continues to lead Facebook, but that lead is becoming increasingly tenuous. Another interesting facet to this market is that the Netherlands has the highest Internet penetration worldwide for two of the other key global social networking sites, Twitter and Linkedin. The Netherlands is in many ways a nexus of global social networking behavior.”

Hyves Leads Facebook in Dutch Social Networking Market

Despite the overall maturity of the Internet market in the Netherlands, the social networking category continues to advance, growing 18 percent to 11.5 million visitors in March 2011 (representing 96 percent of the online population). Hyves continues to hold the top position among social networking sites in the market with more than 7.6 million visitors in March, but Facebook is quickly gaining ground, surging 76 percent in the past year to nearly 6.6 million visitors. and rank third and fourth, respectively, with more than 3 million visitors and each growing approximately 70 percent in the past year.

*Excludes visits from public computers such as Internet cafes or
access from mobile phones or PDAs. (Source: comScore Media Metrix)

Netherlands Ranks #1 in Linkedin and Twitter Penetration

The Netherlands also has an exceptionally high representation among social networking sites and, ranking #1 among all countries in Internet penetration for these sites. In each case, more than one in four Dutch Internet users visits these sites during the course of the month. While the top ten countries in Linkedin penetration are either English-speaking or in Western Europe, the top countries for Twitter touch virtually every corner of the globe.

(Source: comScore Media Metrix)

About comScore

comScore, Inc. (NASDAQ: SCOR) is a global leader in measuring the digital world and preferred source of digital marketing intelligence. For more information, please visit

Related Article:

Social media, potential game maker in ASEAN

The Jakarta Post, Mariel Grazella and Andi Haswidi, Jakarta, Tue, 04/26/2011

Governments, pay attention. The online social media, which innocuously started out as a medium of personal tell-all, is poised to be a powerful catalyst of change as more tech-savvy people use the medium to disseminate information once hushed up by governments.

“Technology, particularly communication technology, is changing the world. Look at what is happening in the Arab world,” Mahfuz Anam, the editor of Bangladesh-based English newspaper The Daily Star, said Monday.

“Nobody ever thought that there would be so many public voices coming out and changing governments,” he added.

The spirit of protests in Tunisia spread across many Arab nations where people sought change. News of the bloodless coup d’etat, as well as the method by which it was achieved, even spread to China, prompting the government to block access to Twitter and Facebook to prevent a repeat of such events in the country.

“The social media must now be used to increase democracy, to increase the participation of the people in running the country,” he told The Jakarta Post at a discussion on the changing balance of power in Asia.

He added that social media, paired with laws on the right to information, were also potent weapons against corruption by shedding light into government processes.

In addition to Bangladesh, Asian countries such as Indonesia have laws stipulating that governments must provide information to the public unless the information could jeopardize national security.

“The cloak of secrecy is the weapon of corruption. When you release that cloak of secrecy, corruption does not disappear but reduces dramatically,” Mahfuz added.

Ravindra Kumar, the editor of Indian daily The Statesman, added that the influence of social media stretched beyond the borders of a country.

He said foreign affairs could change as well after governments of other countries read accounts on the true state of affairs in another county through what residents of that country posted on social media outlets.

He added that diplomats, politicians and civil servants “who have long put a cloak on foreign policy and strategic affairs” would be those most affected by social media.

Social media can be used to increase participation in political processes both within and outside the country. Wong Chun Wai, the editor of Malaysian newspaper The Star, said candidates geared up for election on Facebook and Twitter.

“They are discovering that this is the form of communication through which they can now reach more individuals than mainstream media,” he added.

He said regional political entities such as ASEAN could capitalize on the wide reach of social media in promoting causes valuable to ASEAN.

For example, he said, ASEAN could work with bloggers in Asia to act as ambassadors to promote people-to-people relationships. However, a “concerted effort to do so” must be made by ASEAN member states.

He added that social media would eventually change the workings of ASEAN.

“You can see it coming. It’s only a matter of time,” he said.

Related Article:

The Internet - The first Worldwide Tool of Unification ("The End of History")

Now I give you something that few think about: What do you think the Internet is all about, historically? Citizens of all the countries on Earth can talk to one another without electronic borders. The young people of those nations can all see each other, talk to each other, and express opinions. No matter what the country does to suppress it, they're doing it anyway. They are putting together a network of consciousness, of oneness, a multicultural consciousness. It's here to stay. It's part of the new energy. The young people know it and are leading the way.

I gave you a prophecy more than 10 years ago. I told you there would come a day when "everyone could talk to everyone and, therefore, there could be no conspiracy." For conspiracy depends on separation and secrecy - something hiding in the dark that only a few know about. Seen the news lately? What is happening? Could it be that there is a new paradigm happening that seems to go against history? Read More …. "The End of History"- Nov 20, 2010 (Kryon channeled by Lee Carroll)

"The New Paradigm of Reality" Part I/II – Feb 12, 2011 (Kryon channeled by Lee Carroll)
(Subjects: Egypt Uprising, Iran/Persia Uprising, Peace in Middle East without Israel actively involved, Muhammad, "Conceptual" Youth Revolution, "Conceptual" (without a manager hierarchy) managed Businesses, Internet, Social Media, News Media, Google, Bankers, Global Unity,..... etc.)

Tuesday, April 26, 2011

How the Netherlands took to the Internet

RNW, 25 April 2011, By Heleen Sittig

(Photo: Flickr/Alan Light)

People in this country visit Dutch sites and Dutch versions of foreign sites every day and never stop to think about it. That little .nl at the end of the URLs was one of the first country domains. “Dot nl” has existed since 1986 and, in fact, celebrates its 25th anniversary today.

RNW spoke to Piet Beertema, one of the small group of visionaries who applied for the national domain name. “1986 seems a long time ago. Was there even internet back then?”

“No. Not for Europeans, anyway.” The internet did exist, but only as a network of computers in the United States.

“We were hoping to get connected, but we were still in the Cold War years. The Americans regarded Europe as a region you couldn’t fully trust, so the chances didn’t look too good. However, we had built our own network in Europe, which consisted of between 20 and 25,000 computers by the end of 1985.”

Hooking up

The Centrum Wiskunde & Informatica (Centre for Mathematics & Information Science) where Beertema worked was the central hub of the European computer network, EUnet. Its website, which still exists, was the first ever “dot nl” site.

The World Wide Web (WWW) did not exist at the time and the network was used for two things: e-mails and news groups. Sending a mail was a little more complicated than it is now.

“If you wanted to send an e-mail to Australia, it would probably have to pass through five to ten computers and each one in the chain had to phone the next one. It could take half a day or even 24 hours before your message arrived.”

In the late 1980s, the ball started rolling and all Dutch universities were soon linked to the internet. However, the pioneers still had no idea that the internet would someday be part of the daily lives of millions of people.

“Data was transferred at the rate of 30 bits per second using conventional phone lines, which made it really expensive. Transatlantic phone connections cost around two euros a minute and it seemed clear that it would never be something for the masses.”

In the vanguard

The Netherlands was not only one of the first countries with its own domain name, but also one where internet spread faster than elsewhere. A lot of people use internet and there are a large number of .nl sites. More than 4.4 million are active at present and that number is increasing by 2,700 a day. “Dot nl” is now the third largest country domain in the world, after .de (Germany) and .uk (United Kingdom).

Willem Velthoven, founder of Mediamatic, an organisation for new media, art and society, has his own theory as to why the Netherlands has been in the forefront for so long.

“The Netherlands is generally a country which uses media a great deal. It’s not something which has only developed recently. Hundreds of years ago it was a place where publishers thrived. They published books for other countries too – for the Arab world, where book printing was actually banned for a while – and for France where political and sexually explicit writing was banned. The enthusiasm for media is a long and still strong tradition in the Netherlands.”

Sunday, April 24, 2011

Google exec focuses on Egypt, By Alan Boyle, Apr 23, 2011

Google executive Wael Ghonim, center, is
seen here speaking to the crowd in Cairo's
Tahrir Square on Feb. 8. Ghonim now says
he's taking a "long-term sabbatical" from
Google to set up a nongovernmental
organization to help Egyptians in the post-
Mubarak era. (
Tara Todras-Whitehill / AP)
The Google executive who helped spark this year's popular revolt in Egypt says he's taking a "long-term sabbatical" from the tech company and setting up a nongovernmental organization to help Egyptians with their transition to the post-Mubarak era.

Wael Ghonim, a 30-year-old Egyptian, is in charge of Google's marketing operation in the Middle East and Africa. He launched an anonymous Facebook page in honor of Khaled Said, a 28-year-old businessman who died last June at the hands of Egypt's undercover police.

Protests over Said's death quickly escalated into a wider outcry against Egyptian President Hosni Mubarak's regime, and on Jan. 27, Ghonim was snatched off the streets of Cairo and held blindfolded in detention. After his release, he took a highly visible role in the anti-Mubarak protests, which culminated in the ouster of Mubarak.

Since then, Ghonim has been calling on the outside world to pour investments into Egypt and help revive its tourist industry. "I would say to the American citizens, 'Come and visit us and see the new spirit of the ... Egyptian people,'" he said last week.

Today, Ghonim said in a Twitter update that he would turn his focus more fully to Egypt's reconstruction: "Decided to take a long term sabbatical from Google and start a technology-focused NGO [nongovernmental organization] to help fight poverty and foster education in Egypt."

Could this be a steppingstone toward a career in Egyptian politics? Or is the rise of social media in the Arab world — in Tunisia, Egypt, Bahrain, Yemen and even Syria — such a powerful force that Ghonim will already be in the "sweet spot" for the intersection of technology, politics and society? Feel free to weigh in with your comments about technology's potential impact on global society.

Related Articles:

Saturday, April 23, 2011

Mizuho Bank head to resign over computer glitch: report

Reuters, TOKYO, Fri Apr 22, 2011

(Reuters) - The head of Mizuho Bank, the retail banking unit of Japan's second-largest lender Mizuho Financial Group, will resign by June over a massive computer glitch, the Asahi newspaper reported on Saturday.

Mizuho was hit by the glitch last month after accounts were flooded with donations for a magnitude 9.0 earthquake and tsunami in northeast Japan that killed up to 28,000 people.

The computer troubles forced shutdowns of Mizuho's automatic teller machines and disrupted transactions, adding to the woes of businesses and households already badly shaken by the disasters.

Mizuho Bank's president, Satoru Nishibori, is seen compiling a plan to prevent a recurrence of such glitches and formally announce his resignation by a shareholders' meeting in June, the Asahi said, without citing a source.

Candidates to replace him include Manabu Yoshidome, Mizuho Bank's deputy president, and Takashi Nonaka, president of Mizuho Trust & Banking, the Asahi added.

Some form of punishment for Mizuho Financial Group President and CEO Takashi Tsukamoto is also being considered, the newspaper said.

(Reporting by Chisa Fujioka; Editing by Robert Birsel)

Friday, April 22, 2011

Apple named 'least green' tech company

Greenpeace report puts Apple at bottom of green league table due to reliance on coal at data centres, Felicity Carus in San Francisco, Thursday 21 April 2011

Apple's iPhone 4. The company has come under attack for
its green credentials. Photograph: Eric Thayer/Reuters

Apple has come bottom of the most comprehensive green league table of technology companies because of its heavy reliance on "dirty data" centres.

The list, which is compiled by Greenpeace and released in San Francisco on Thursday, shows that the company relies heavily on highly polluting coal power at the sites that house its banks of servers.

Greenpeace's report, How Dirty is Your Data? reveals that the company's investment in a new North Carolina facility will triple its electricity consumption, equivalent to the electricity demand of 80,000 average US homes. The facility's power will be supplied by Duke Energy, with a mix of 62% coal and 32% nuclear. On Wednesday, Apple posted a large boost in quarterly earnings, which grew by 95% to $6bn (£3.65bn).

Gary Cook, Greenpeace's IT policy analyst and lead author of the report, said: "Consumers want to know that when they upload a video or change their Facebook status that they are not contributing to global warming or future Fukushimas."

Companies in the US are not required by law to disclose their energy use or carbon emissions. But Greenpeace drew on publicly available information on investments made in data centres, to estimate the maximum power these facilities will consume, and matched that information with data from the government or utilities.

The report estimated dependence on coal for Apple's data centres at 54.5%, followed by Facebook at 53.2%, IBM at 51.6%, HP at 49.4%, and Twitter at 42.5%. Top marks in Greenpeace's clean energy index went to Yahoo, followed by Google and Amazon. Greenpeace is also campaigning for Facebook to "unfriend coal" and use cleaner energy to power its servers.

Cook said: "Many companies treat their energy consumption a bit like the Coca-Cola secret formula, because they don't want competitors knowing how much they spend on energy. The amount of electricity they consume would give some indication of what kind of arms race they were in. They don't really want this story to be told."

Cloud computing relies on large data centres, rather than in-house based IT services, to power internet-based services such as Hotmail or Gmail. Data centre energy demand already accounts for 1.5% to 2% of world electricity consumption and is set to quadruple over the next 10 years.

Molly Webb, head of smart technology at the Climate Group in London, said: "Greenpeace is calling for transparency from companies which rely heavily on data centres, and that would ideally highlight the need for investment and ambitious government policy to ensure enough clean power is available to green our tweets."

Jonathan Koomey, a project scientist for the End-Use Forecasting Group at Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory, whose work was cited in the study, said that the IT industry wrongly attracted criticism: "The use of IT often reduces environmental impacts. When we compared greenhouse gas emissions for downloading music to buying it on a CD, for example, we found downloads reduced emissions 40-80%."

Apple declined to comment on the Greenpeace report. But at its last shareholder meeting, Apple CFO Peter Oppenheimer said the company would have more to say on the new data centre in Maiden, North Carolina, in the spring.

Related Article:

Oklahoma, where the wind comes sweepin’ down the plain - (Google)

Google Blog, 4/21/2011

Rodgers and Hammerstein weren’t kidding when they wrote what is now Oklahoma’s official state song. The gusts on the plains are fierce, which makes the Sooner State a great place to harness clean, renewable wind energy. Our commitment to greening our energy supply is also strong, which is why we’ve just signed a power purchase agreement (PPA) for wind energy—our second in less than a year—in Oklahoma.

The purchase is similar in size and structure to the agreement we signed last July for wind energy in Iowa, but this time we will be applying the power to our Mayes County, Okla. data center, which will be fully operational later this year. We’ve agreed to purchase all of the energy from NextEra Energy Resources’ Minco II wind facility in Oklahoma for the next 20 years, through Google Energy LLC, an entity that enables us to participate in the wholesale energy market. This 100.8 megawatt facility will be built as a direct result of our financial commitment and should be operational in late 2011.

We’ve made the commitment to be a carbon neutral company, and this purchase is part of our effort to minimize our impact on the environment. We’ve managed to reduce our energy consumption by over 50 percent by building highly energy-efficient facilities, but we know that efficiency alone isn’t enough to eliminate our carbon footprint. We’ve been exploring ways, such as this PPA, to reduce emissions further by increasing the amount of renewable energy we use to power our operations; we purchase high-quality carbon offsets for any remaining emissions.

If you’re interested in learning more about the whys and wherefores of our renewable energy purchases, we’ve just published a white paper (PDF) on the topic. Our hope is that by laying out our reasoning and methods we’ll make it easier for others in the industry to explore similar arrangements.

These purchases represent long-term, meaningful actions to reduce our carbon footprint and power our operations with clean electricity. Our infrastructure team will continue to seek similar opportunities globally as Google’s businesses continue to grow. As a company we hope that purchases like these, plus the additional $350 million we’ve invested in renewable energy projects, support the market and drive down the cost of clean energy. This will enable even more companies to invest in sustainable energy solutions.

Posted by Gary Demasi, Global Infrastructure team

Thursday, April 21, 2011

Obama's Facebook town hall a sign of times to come

Social networks like Facebook and Twitter expected to play big role in 2012 elections

Computerworld, by Sharon Gaudin, April 21, 2011

Computerworld - President Barack Obama's town hall event live on Facebook Wednesday thrust social networking into the political milieu just as the run up to the 2012 elections begin.

Mr Obama came to Facebook for an online town hall
meeting to sell his deficit reduction plan and himself for
another stint in the White House in 2012. (BBC News)
Obama held a nearly hour-long town hall with audience members at Facebook's headquarters in Palo Alto, Calif. late on Wednesday.

Trading in his usual grey T-shirt for a shirt and tie, Facebook co-founder Mark Zuckerberg moderated the event, posing questions that people posted online and allowing members of the live audience to ask the president questions.

"Thank you so much, Facebook, for hosting, first of all," Obama said, kicking off the event. "My name is Barack Obama and I'm the guy who got Mark to wear a jacket and tie."

For the next hour, Obama took questions ranging from the federal budget to health care and the country's housing market.

People posted more than 1,700 questions on the White House's Facebook page, and more on the Web site.

This isn't the president's first brush with Facebook or social media in general.

When Zuckerberg was introducing Obama at the beginning of the town hall today, he called the president "one of the most popular people on Facebook with 19 million 'likes'."

This may have been Obama's first Facebook town hall, but it wasn't the president's first online town hall. In 2009, just days after the State of the Union address, Obama took questions from an audience in the White House and from online participants who had posed questions on the Web site.

That 2009 event attracted nearly 10,000 users who submitted 104,111 questions and cast 3,606,658 votes for queries they wanted answered.

During the 2008 presidential campaign, Obama seemingly showed other politicians what it means to harness the power of the Web. The then-Senator went beyond the somewhat static Web pages of most past campaigns and tapped the power of Web 2.0 tools including Facebook, YouTube, blogs and discussion boards to create a conversation with potential voters.

And on inauguration day, a major overhaul of the site was launched just as the president was being sworn in.

At noon that day, the president's official Web site appeared online with a new design that focused not just on the new administration but on new media.

In the past few years, the Republican party has made its own inroads in terms of online efforts.

Just before last fall's mid-term elections, Republican candidates for the U.S. Senate had more than 1.43 million fans on Facebook, compared with just less than 300,000 for Democrats, according to On Twitter, Republican Senatorial candidates collectively counted 520,000 followers, far more than the 90,000 followers of Democratic candidates.

As Republicans and Democrats work to increase their social networking chops before the 2012 presidential election, social networks are positioned to play a critical role.

"Social networking will almost certainly play a huge role in the 2012 elections. But it's a double-edged sword," cautioned Dan Olds, an analyst with The Gabriel Consulting Group.

Candidates may be thrilled with the power of social networking but they need to remain wary of it as well, Olds said.

"It can be used to push out a candidate's message inexpensively and directly to potential voters and supporters," he explained. "It can also help them mobilize their troops and quickly spread news and information. But, if the wrong message goes out, like a gaff, social networking will spread that far and wide too."

He added that people frequently make big, messy mistakes online, embarrassing the person they're trying to help or releasing the wrong information.

"Candidates also need to make sure their tweets and Facebook postings are being vetted by someone who knows what they're doing," said Olds, adding that online town halls can be "hugely persuasive."

Read more about Web 2.0 and Web Apps in Computerworld's Web 2.0 and Web Apps Topic Center.

Related Article:

Bradley Manning to get showers and TV, 20 April, 2011

Code Pink for Peace demonstrators protest the resignation
of State Department spokesman P.J. Crowley and the detention of U.S.
Army Private Bradley Manning in front of the U.S. State Department March 14,
2011 in Washington, DC. (Chip Somodevilla/Getty Images/AFP )

The US military is set to transfer accused WikiLeaks leaker Pfc. Bradley Manning from solitary confinement at Quantico Marine Base to the Army’s Fort Leavenworth prison where Books, TV and even showers will be made available.

Following increased international and domestic criticism of the handling of Manning’s detention, the Pentagon has opted to move Manning to the medium security prison in Leavenworth, Kansas.

Numerous human rights groups, the UN, foreign leaders, and US politicians have been critical of the military's handling of Manning’s detention, many arguing his conditions were cruel, inhuman and even unconstitutional.

The Pentagon contends that outside criticism however had something to do with the transfer.

“We have assessed that it is in Private Manning’s best interests to move him at this juncture in the case,” said Jeh Johnson, the general counsel for the Defense Department. “We were looking at a situation where he would need an environment more conducive for a longer detention.”

The move it said to be taking place immediately.

While at Leavenworth, Manning will enjoy such luxuries as books, TV and daily showers. In addition he will be given recreational time and enjoy three full meals a day. He will have the ability to speak and socialize with others, unlike solitary confinement at Quantico.

While at Quantico Manning often went 23 hours straight without seeing anyone else. He was routinely stripped naked, forced to sit on a cold cell floor and deprived of physical activity.

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