I’m organizing the Toronto Idiotarod and I like to think that these sort of crazy events function as art.
We’re de-contextualizing the shopping cart which is a device designed to have people consume more than they normally would. In the Idiotarod the shopping cart is not something that you’ll want to fill with objects. We’re taking a tool used for consumption and turning it into something fun.
At each checkpoint the Idiots (racers) will be given information from an environmental organization and condoms from a health organization. We’re trying to educate people about issues in their own city by providing a fun experience.
If you live in Toronto, hop on the TTC or your bike and come to Grange Park for the 4pm start of the race!
Train companies use maintenance vehicles that can switch from road to rails, however, this is the first time I’ve seen bus do this. Japan Rail is testing the bus-train combo on the island of Hokkaido. The system seems to work because the mass transit there is not mass at all.
Dual-mode vehicles have four rubber tires for road use and four steel wheels for the rails, and it takes less than 15 seconds to go from road to rail and back again. It drives just like a bus on the road, and a hydraulic system raises the tires and lowers the steel wheels as the driver guides the vehicle onto the tracks.
Japan Rail provides rail service for the island of Hokkaido, and about one-third of its lines carry less than 500 people. It developed the dual-mode vehicles as a means of cutting costs on those lines without reducing service. The vehicles use a Toyota microbus body and axles built by Hino. The two companies will help Japan Rail refine the technology and increase passenger capacity with an eye toward commercial production.
A movie, The World According to Monsanto has been released that examines (the not good) Monsanto. The movie exposes how the company manipulates scientific data and bribes politicians to get it’s way. So what’s so good about this?
Monsanto has tried suing any site that hosts the video below to stop the spread of this information. The good news is that people are taking on this massive corporation and you can too. There already is a campaign against Monsanto that you can join, and another. Vanity Fair has even published an article on the evil Monsanto.
Recycling is perhaps the easiest think one can do for the environment and it’s very very effective at reducing the amount of raw materials that get consumed.
Why is recycling so efficient? According to Alcoa, recycling a ton of aluminum uses just 5% of the energy required to make virgin metal. Every ton of recycled aluminum that Alcoa uses saves about 14,000 kilowatt hours of electricity. The U.S. Energy Information Administration (EIA) estimates that the average American household consumes 920 kilowatts of electricity per month. Consequently, using 1 ton of recycled aluminum as opposed to 1 ton of virgin aluminum would make enough conserved energy available to power an American household for over 15 months.