Tuesday, February 23, 2010
EV's? Didn't we have them back in the 90's, only to be smashed by the Iron Cowboy boots of GM, and then and brushed under the carpet by the oil industry? I was skeptical too, then I saw a commercial on the tv (whilst slogging away on the treadmill at the local gym), and lo and behold there it was, a commercial for the "soon to be released" Nissan Leaf. Sure the name leaves much to be admired, but it is the real thing, not some decaf version, but an actual EV!!
The car itself actually looks pretty cool, something similar to the Toyota Prius. The key point here though is that it will be the first full-scale, widely available, manufactured, and actually commercialized "Zero-Emissions Car" on the market. Chevrolet (who for some reason I thought didn't even exist after last years big 3 Car Company Meltdown) is releasing the mercedes-benzish-looking "Volt," which will definitely appeal to American consumers who can dish out the $40,000 USD to claim one for themselves. In fact I have read elsewhere the Chevy and Nissan are competing to release their car first, but I don't really see it as a competition, you see, the Volt is merely a hybrid (which means carbon emissions, come get your Carbon Monoxide folks). Whilst being a very sexy looking hybrid vehicle, its hardly news, in fact hybrid vehicles have been on the global market since 2003! Hey Chevrolet, ever heard of the Toyota Prius or the Honda Insight??
That aside, the Nissan Leaf is the real deal, and Nissan says it will be priced somewhere between $25,000-35,000 USD, and that it will travel a purported 100 miles on a single charge. Also, the batteries will be leased, but the buyer will own the rest of the car?? I reckon that Nissan is setting it up so that the low-batteries can be taken to a "way-station," (probably at gas stations) where they can be simply swapped for a fully charged battery at no additional cost to the owner, thus allowing one to not have to stop and charge their own batteries every time they start to run low. Many states have been installing charge stations along busy highways as well, these ideally will be 220 VAC outlets or higher as the batteries take longer to charge on the lower current outlets. This will however, lead to another side business of installing home-charging stations. In my opinion, not having to inhale as many noxious (not to mention cancer-inducing) fumes will make it all worth it in the end.
The main take-away point here is that it is finally actually happening! The EV, which always seemed to be "just a few more years away" is going to be here by December this year (that's 2010 for you Einstein's out there). This is huge, and it means that many other car companies are going to be jumping on the band-wagon, assuming of course that the Leaf is a smash-hit, and with the public interest and dominance of the Toyota Prius in recent years, I can see that happening. Check out the links below to see what I am talking about. Nissan Leaf
Thursday, February 4, 2010
For those of you who still haven't seen James Cameron's new blockbuster smash (and 3D) hit, "Avatar," you are in for a ride. The plot involves a mercenary/marine being sent to a nearby star-system which includes a moon called Pandora, where he becomes entangled with the local Indigenous humanoid tribe as he learns there way in an artificial body termed an avatar.
Pandora (a moon of a Jupiter like planet) is similar to Earth and teeming with life (often glowing like neon-lights). This depiction reminded me much of the "Earth," DVD series and some of our not so well known resident life-forms here on Earth (Gaia). Of course what do the modern Earthlings do first thing, they start to strip-mine the surface, and to rape and pillage it of all its resources for some precarious form of profit. Which, at humanity's current level of consciousness, is most likely what would happen if such a planet were in arms reach of humanity's current influence. But the movie itself is a beacon of something new arising. This movie is essentially a consciousness-raising program, with intense 3D visuals, surround-sound, and all the other goodies that come from your IMAX cinema experience, it is a sensory overload experience. In my opinion this is a good thing, and in this case, this movie clearly reveals the folly of militaristic culture and their disconnected ego-centric perspectives of Life. It also is a program that teaches the viewer about the "one-ness of life," and the simple, yet complex interconnected network of energy which flows through and unites all forms, which quantum theory has been discovering to be true in recent years. What does this mean? Consciousness (aka Life, Awareness aware of itself, God, whatever you want to call the formless dimension) is breaking into the traditionally egoic realm of blockbuster films, among other places. And, of course, we are all united at some very basic level, which means there is nothing any one individuation of energy (ie a person) can feel, think, say, or do that doesn't effect the whole in some way. The realization of this of course is the end of the concept of separation, which also indicates the end of the collective human ego.
Another aspect of this film to be addressed is the recognition of the plight of Indigenous peoples. This film speaks to the enormous amount of suffering and pain inflicted upon indigenous people throughout human history by the West and its Ego-dominated cultures throughout the past. In the the movie they are another species of humanoid, calling themselves the Na'vi. The only difference between the plight of the Na'vi and those Earthly indigenous cultures is that the Earthly ones did not have happy endings. Whether the indigenous cultures of Earth recognize it officially or not, Avatar carries important messages to many unconscious people that has potential to cause important shifts in them. It also addresses the importance of living in balance with your environment, which can only truly be reached when there is a balance inside between form and formless.
All in all, this film will raise the consciousness of all the humans who watch it, and it will thus raise the Collective Human Consciousness of all humanity to some degree. I would thus like to thank Director James Cameron for this amazing contribution that addresses humanity's collective madness and exposes it for what it is. One of the only other films I have seen in the recent past to have achieved this so well (and there are many others too) that I will mention here is "There Will Be Blood." And as has been said, "the seeing is freeing." In my opinion Avatar will win the best picture award at the academy awards this year, unless it does not.
Alas, for those of you who have not yet seen this 3D masterpiece, be prepared to have your consciousness raised, and who knows, the energy of Eywa just might help you tune-in to the energy of Gaia a bit. Cheers everyone.