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My day job is writing documentation for developers who work in what is perhaps the most hyped buzz phrase industry today: Artificial Intelligence.

Those who work in AI know that really, it is just a fancy way of saying math. Computers can do math astoundingly fast (this is AKA Machine Learning), which means they can distinguish patterns astoundingly fast. The application of a "known" pattern to a new scenario to achieve a predictable and desired result is the gist of what most AI does.

Conversely, nature has what is more aptly described as "Natural" Intelligence. Every single plant that bursts with seed pods has inherent engineering to maximize success for that plant's "known" pattern ... it rallies and sometimes flocks with others of its kind to further ensure that its cycle can repeat itself and sustain its unique imprint of and on life.

Of course, we can honor their efforts with more

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First Amendment rights to free, political, activist speech being among the truths we hold to be self-evident.

== The only thing worth celebrating this 4th of July.

📜 🆓 🗨️

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Really, the big box stores are the antithesis of what we're doing with Ecosteader.

It's much better to be a patron of your local suppliers, not the national chains.

Please get the word out; it is time to STOP funding HomeDepot's corrupt politicking.

businessinsider.com/home-depot

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Sustainable vs Non-Sustainable:

It comes down to a question of renewable vs non-renewable. Only resources are sustainable; this is why there's no such thing as "clean coal". There never was. What the monsters in Republican governments (local, state, and federal) lie to you about is everything. Why do you elect liars to lead you? They gleefully destroy what the planet takes Billions of years to form. Their destruction spells your doom.

We [do not need to recreate the smog and pollution crisis of the 70's to know](motherjones.com/politics/2011/) that renewable resource energy is the better way to plan for future energy needs. Stop drilling in Alaska; stop everything the TRE45ONists are doing.

iea.org/renewables2018/

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"Proponents of the IndieWeb offer a fairly straightforward analysis of our current social-media crisis. They frame it in terms of a single question: Who owns the servers? The bulk of our online activity takes places on servers owned by a small number of massive companies. Servers cost money to run. If you’re using a company’s servers without paying for the privilege, then that company must be finding other ways to “extract value” from you—and it’s that quest for large-scale value extraction.. that leads directly to the crises of compromised privacy and engineered addictiveness... When you confine your online activities to so-called walled-garden networks, you end up using interfaces that benefit the owners of those networks."

Source: newyorker.com/tech/annals-of-t

The "IndieWeb" is not about walled gardens at all. There aren't "gardens" on Facebook; more like a horror movie funhouse of mirrors. You're always being distorted -- to some degree or another-- by censors or distractions.

An independent server admin ensures a message isn't distorted, ensures you are not censored, lets he truth of the words you write be pure. There are some messages so mighty with fact that they can't be kept quiet, no matter what.

Not everything in this world is about money.

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So let's get back to the polar bears. ecosteader.com/@indie/10124575

"If the bureau cannot make such a determination, the incidental take permit must be denied ...

The refuge’s coastal plain provides critical habitat for mother polar bears during the winter months when they come on shore to den and give birth. Bear cubs are especially sensitive during their first few months of life, and any disruption to their growth and development can be life-threatening. The denning period also happens to overlap with the only window during which seismic surveys can be carried out, since the ground must be frozen solid to allow for the passage of heavy vehicles and machinery. Even using the latest infrared technology, the FWS memo predicted that only about half of the bear dens would be detected during flyovers. That would leave approximately eight to 10 dens that would be susceptible to disturbances from vehicle traffic, human activity, and seismic work.

The threat is compounded by global warming. As sea ice loss has accelerated, more and more bears are coming inland, creating additional pressure on the population. Steve Amstrup, a former US Geological Survey researcher and chief scientist at Polar Bears International, said the Interior Department hasn’t fully considered the challenges facing the Southern Beaufort Sea population. “If we don’t stop the decline of sea ice, polar bears are going to disappear,” he said.

Since the mid-1980s, the region’s polar bear population has declined from an estimated 1,800 animals to between 800 and 900."

Pruitt's EPA is definitely GUILTY. Not only were they unwilling, but also now must they be unable to "hears" and here is why:

motherjones.com/environment/20

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loss of a talented scientist to senseless violence 

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Hedgehog in the garden!

We found a hedgehog in the garden this afternoon. At first it seemed ok, then it just stopped and started curling up like it wanted to snooze on the garden path. We were worried, weighted it (259g) and after a few phonecalls to hedgehog people, someone said it's probably ok, and to leave it outside with cat food and water and see how it goes.

So we put it next to my log pile, which I put down for hedgehogs and insects (yay), and it soon clambered over it and under the hedge. So I think it's ok. We have put food and water down and will check back later.

Good luck little hog!

#Hedgehog #Wildlife

One of the pledges needed for any 2020.

"We need candidates to take this pledge and fiercely oppose climate-wrecking pipelines like Keystone XL because the science is crystal clear — we can’t afford to build ANY new fossil fuel infrastructure. We need candidates to oppose drilling on public lands, offshore drilling, the Line 3 pipeline, the Atlantic Coast and Mountain Valley pipelines, and more. Real climate leadership to confront the climate crisis means opposing any and all new fossil fuel infrastructure.

In March, Trump took unprecedented — and possibly illegal — action to force through TransCanada's proposed Keystone XL tar sands pipeline project. We’ve killed this pipeline before, and we’ll do it again."

act.oilchangeus.org/sign/NoKXL

No new combustion engines.

Starting a thread on . This is one area that Ecosteader's mission as a B Corp can begin to be elucidated. It's more than my "hope"; it is my firm belief that is the only way to build a sustainable wealth cycle for a community: one that endures.

"For community wealth building to work among tribal nations, it must match indigenous philosophies and values. It must be-come the community’s own by grounding the frame in the cultural values of the community and translating it into the lived realities of the people."

Another important spoke of consideration is to listen ; meditation is balancing the inner

ears are things that listen

democracycollaborative.org/sit

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A few scenes from the protests in downtown this morning.

Many stores shut their doors completely. I didn't realize that this was the weekend it was all going down... I just wanted to go get a new collar for the kitty from Saturday Market. 🐈

A helicopter and drones overhead; helmets, cops and colorful people everywhere.

Stuck around one of the stages long enough to hear from an speaker reminding everyone that at that waterfront space, where two rivers meet, people historically congregated to share food and medicine.

Waking up at 2:30 AM PDT to upgrade ecosteader's server from Ubuntu 16 to 18 and Postgres from 9.5 to 10?

All with only ~25 mins of downtime?

Yeah, that is how much I you all. 🤟 💛 🦋

Wake up and put on your superpower.

The Universe couldn't possibly have been outsmarted by anything like that.

Perhaps now they resign? To avoid unnecessary destruction?

Geology teaches us that transformation happens gradually, over time.

It must have locked in certain things a long, long time ago.

As it turns out, land that is great for farming is also great for power. So is it a good idea? And if so, how to best combine the two?

Researchers at OSU investigated...

"“There’s an old adage that agriculture can overproduce anything,” Chad Higgins, an associate professor in OSU’s college of agricultural sciences, said in a statement. “That’s what we found in electricity, too. It turns out that 8,000 years ago, farmers found the best places to harvest solar energy on Earth.”

The setup, known as both “agrivoltaics” or “agrophotovoltaics,” has been shown in previous research as a more efficient way of using the same farmland. It could benefit crops and provide power for both the farm itself and the broader community."

So what is the drawback? Too much sun, ironically. :)

"They used this data to produce a model of how solar panels work in heat. Essentially, the cooler the better.

“As the conditions became more humid, the panels did worse,” Higgins said in the statement. “Solar panels are just like people and the weather, they are happier when it’s cool and breezy and dry.”

Higgins and his team then took that data and compared it with World Bank data about global energy demands, placed at 21 petawatt-hours. Crop lands, the data found, could offer 28 watts of energy per square meter as a median average. That would enable less than one percent of cropland to power the world."

"Solar installations in the United States are expected to double in the next four years, reaching four million by 2023. Prices have also dropped to outstrip coal in most areas of the country."

Source: inverse.com/article/58467-sola

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We're living in a microplastic world.

"Plastic was the furthest thing from Gregory Wetherbee’s mind when he began analyzing rainwater samples collected from the Rocky Mountains. “I guess I expected to see mostly soil and mineral particles,” said the US Geological Survey researcher. Instead, he found multicolored microscopic plastic fibers."

#Plastics #MicroPlastics #Pollution #Environment

theguardian.com/us-news/2019/a

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Key phosphorus-based molecule for life on Earth may have come from space

The answer to "How did the first organisms on Earth incorporate the critical element phosphorus?" has been a quandary for researchers, but, University of Hawaiʻi at Mānoa physical chemists believe a meteoric visitor could be the critical link. Phosphorus is a key element for the molecules that compose all living organisms and helps form the backbone of DNA molecules, cell membranes (phospholipids), even bones and teeth. However, most phosphorus on Earth is bound in a state that does not allow for easy release or access. Modern organisms have evolved to extract the limited supplies of phosphorus in water.

This is awesome of a subterranean home in Anchorage, Alaska. It was built in 1982. (The same year my family moved there, interestingly enough!)

Some really awesome ideas, including using the slope of the hill to create built-in "skylights", and the earth itself as built-in insulation.

"In the mid-1970s, when the Isaacses bought the property, the house was a 650-square-foot basement. It was built into a steep hill that sloped down into a grove of tall spruce and birch trees to the banks of Fish Creek. The Isaacses wanted to remodel and expand their new place.

They expected to build up, on top of the basement, which was apparently the never-realized plan of the previous owner.

Then their friend, architect Pat McKittrick, came out for a look.

“He said, this is a great place for an earth shelter house,” said Jon Isaacs, a regional planner, using a term grew out of the environmental movement of the 1970s.

Marnie’s dad, a conservative lawyer in Philadelphia, thought it sounded like a hippie idea. But McKittrick pointed out the packed sand beneath the foundation, a stable soil that would also be good for drainage. He built a cardboard model to show Jon and Marnie."

A 1982 Anchorage Daily News story described a complex feat, with block construction and walls waterproofed with a special rubberized asphalt developed in part by the University of Minnesota. Five layers of laminated plywood panels were applied to the exposed walls of the house and the roof, and the builders tested it with a garden house to make sure it didn’t leak. There was a lot of careful digging to save the trees, Marnie Isaacs said."

Source: adn.com/alaska-life/2019/08/11

Guess who sneakily shut down the US Navy's official Task Force on ?

"Task Force Climate Change, [was] created in 2009 to plan and develop "future public, strategic, and policy discussions" on the issue.

The task force ended in March, a spokesperson said, and the group's tab on the Navy's energy, environment and climate change website was removed sometime between March and July, according to public archives.

There is still a climate change link in the lower right corner of the site that led, at last check, to an empty page titled "Climate Change Fact Sheets."

Since it started, the TFCC released several reports on the strategic challenge climate change poses, taking a close look at what the melting Arctic means for strategic planning, and the dangers sea-level rise and extreme weather pose to many naval installations.

Alice Hill, a research fellow at the Hoover Institution and former senior director for resilience on the National Security Council under President Obama, said she created a Department of Homeland Security task force modeled on the one created by the Navy.

Hill said that while it was important to mainstream the TFCC processes, she remains concerned that ending the task force has more to do with a pattern of climate change denial in President Trump's administration.

"It's consistent with the patterns we've seen: Efforts with the title 'climate change' have either been suspended or renamed," Hill said.

"By not mentioning climate change, we are signaling the events that we're experiencing now, the impacts, are not something that immediately needs to be attended to and planned for," she added."

Source: eenews.net/stories/1060877355

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Is there a federated alternative to facebook events yet?

If there isn't there should be

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"Before Twitter, before algorithmic timelines filtered our reality for us, before #surveillancecapitalism, there was #RSS: Really Simple #Syndication.
For those of you born into the siloed world of the centralised web, RSS is an ancient technology from Web 1.0" @aral
https://ar.al/2018/06/29/reclaiming-rss/

These birds so smart! We can gain some amazing insights about that "just works" in the natural world, and with and tested and true from our animal friends.

"The nest is a deep cup that follows the natural look of the plant. The upper, shinier surface of the leaf faces outwards so there is no contrast in exterior. The nest faces the same direction that the leaves grow, so if the plant has a natural downward disposition, it stands vertically, and if the foliage stands out horizontally, so does the nest.

The edges of the threads act like rivets, holding the leaf edges together. The stitches don't unravel, thanks to the coarseness of the thread and elasticity of the leaf springing back to grip the thread passing through the holes. A single nest can contain between 150 and 200 stitches ... so skillfully put together that it is almost impossible to tell it apart from its surroundings.

The real nest, however, lies within the sewn cup. The male collects and fills the cup with fine grass and lines the sides with other soft material such as animal hairs and plant downs.

'There's a whole range of materials birds can employ such as botanical and animal material,' says Douglas. 'The materials they utilise will offer different properties and birds often consciously choose those materials based on that.'

Tailorbirds often use feathers and fur to fill the leaf cup, because those materials tend to insulate the nest better than anything else. Green plant material is also used, which helps with thermoregulation and reduces the possibility of parasites such as lice."

Thanks to @sohkamyung for the source: nhm.ac.uk/discover/the-bird-th

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Ecosteader

Ecosteader is a network for builders, designers, and innovators of "green" or eco-friendly habitats, gardens, homesteads, farms, artwork, and more. Participate in ecological democracy by designing and building your local communities around sustainable practices. We put shared soil first: because you can't be an #ecologist without being an activist. First Amendment rights to free, political speech are among the truths we hold to be self-evident. And keep boycotting HomeDepot!