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Advance Market Commitments

Inducement Prizes -- Best known for the Ansari X Prize, the DARPA Grand Challenge and the Clay Mathematics Millennium Problems, inducement prizes have a long history, but their recent successes have led to increased government interest, viz. challenge.gov, and resulted in the development of vaccines, thanks in large part to the work of Michael Kremer.* [more inside]
posted by kliuless on Jan 6, 2011 - 8 comments

you are the result of a social experiment; it's the simplest explanation

The experimental method: Testing solutions with randomized trials -- In trying to help explicate the complexity of society Clark Medal-winner Esther Duflo is raising the productivity of social policies by increasing our knowledge of what works and doesn't work through repeated social experiments of randomised controlled trials. She has a large surplus labour pool, a veritable industrial reserve army, to worth with. [more inside]
posted by kliuless on May 19, 2010 - 18 comments

Come one, come all...

Where India is the new Home of all Dreams! No matter what your orientation is, if you have the money (and are willing to be good parents) and take care of the child, then we have a place for you.
posted by hadjiboy on Feb 22, 2009 - 4 comments

Is [Israel + Palestine=Isratine] > [Israel / Palestine]?

Israel + Palestine = Isratine? Or so it should be, Libyan leader Qaddafi argues, promoting the one-state solution. While he is not the first to raise the one-state solution, it is a bold proposal, particularly so soon after the widely-condemned Israeli atrocities in Gaza.
posted by Azaadistani on Jan 22, 2009 - 135 comments

If a coworker drives you nuts...

Have an annoying coworker? This just might be a solution...
posted by konolia on Sep 16, 2006 - 51 comments

Tapping the Sky

45,000 pounds + four 130 foot rotors + up to 200 mph Jet Stream winds = Energy Problem Solved
Like the monster mother of all kites, a company called Sky Windpower (which sports an excellent website about high altitude wind power) has been founded by an Australian engineer with three others to attempt to harness the near limitless windpower of the jet stream with a machine they call an FEG (Flying Electric Generator).
They're currently seeking $4 million to build a 200 kilowatt prototype but still need to get FAA clearance to fly it. The production models would generate 20 megawatts each and would be flown in farms of up to 600 turbines to generate enough power to light up two cities the size of Chicago. Power and control of the huge machines would be handled by a three inch thick tether connected to a winch on a ground station.
Man, I love Popular Science!
posted by fenriq on Aug 19, 2005 - 35 comments

global poverty solutions: consumerism

If the poor get richer, does the world see progress? The global "consumer class", defined by those who make $7,000 or more in local currency, is growing quickly but making it even more difficult for the worlds poor to get ahead. 1.7 billion belong to the consumer class while over 3 billion survive on less than $2 a day. Will the growing tide of new consumers in the developing world contribute to the solution of global poverty or simply add to the problem?
posted by stbalbach on Feb 3, 2004 - 26 comments

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