I don’t get it. Everybody (I know) is whining about how Flash is annoying. AJAX is all the hype, and has the potential to replace most uses of Flash using only JavaScript and CSS (I think). Applets and ActiveX thankfully is a thing of the past. Then why is it necessary to reinvent this crap. First came Silverlight (I’ve never seen a single website using it, anybody else maybe?). Now comes JavaFX. Adobe is also doing something I heard. Who needs all this superfluous stuff?

On a related note, I don’t believe anything will replace Flash, as long as it doesn’t come with a cool web-designer compatible application to create these ‘pages’, like Macromedia did. The thing about Flash is not the language or the powerful features/API, it is the fact that web-designers don’t need to know anything about all that. They can just click together these pages and annoy web users with pages that don’t feel like web, don’t behave like web, etc.

Really, I don’t get why companies invest in things like Silverlight and JavaFX. If somebody knows, please enlighten me.

Welcome back to the 80’s

Thanks Dalibor. When writing my last post about nuclear power, I was still completely unaware of the latest news about Tricastin. This is also quite amazing. There are several hundred kilograms of Uranium leaked, but the official are trying to tell us, the risk for health is minimal. Sounds a little like back in 86 to me (ok, that was a different class of accident still, but the pattern sounds familiar still). And suddenly it’s no more 360 kg, but 75kg. I wonder what happened to the other 285kg. I suppose the press department got something on their head from somebody (government? nuke lobbyists?) and suddenly 285kg disappeared. Easy, isn’t it? But the most amazing thing is that the french energy corporation EdF announced today that they plan to build 10(!) new nuclear power plants. Wow. Just wow.

Am I the only one who feels like warped back into the 80’s? Nuclear power. Ugly haircuts. Cold war. Mideast. Can somebody who is not so disconnected to the music scene like me confirm that Micheal Jackson and crazy synth music and the really bad kind of heavy metal is also hip again? I’m quite disappointed, indeed.

Let me close this article with a free interpretation of one of Johnny Cash’s best songs:

Tricastin*, may you rot and burn in hell.
May your walls fall and may I live to tell.
May all the world forget you ever stood.
And may all the world regret you did no good.

(*) Insert other nuclear plants as you see fit. Johnny Cash was actually singing about Saint Quentin, one of the more infamous prisons of USA, but nuke plants seem to fit perfectly here…

Nuclear power hip again?

There’s some interesting discussion going on right now in Germany (and other countries too? dunno…). Some simple facts:

  • Our power supplies are dominated to significant degree by nuclear power.
  • Energy prices are skyrocketing
  • The only energy providers that I know can keep their prices stable or even drop them a bit are the regenerative energy providers. Yes, my provider (Lichtblick) lately dropped its price by 0,005€.

Now we put that all in the big logic machine, and what comes out of it as the solution? We need to keep our old nuke plants running longer, and probably even build some new ones. Am I the only one who sees a strange twist in that logic?

Some more facts for you people. Nuclear power isn’t the everlasting, clean powersupply that the last-century power lobby wants us to believe. Uranium leaching and its preparation for use in plants is getting more and more expensive, for several reasons. Strongly growing demand from new industries in Asia and other regions (also the reason for skyrocketing oil prices), less available supplies, higher worker wages in the supplying countries, etc. Also, I question if it makes sense to let an industry depend on huge amounts of supply that it cannot produce themselves? What if the supplier countries stop supplying?

Another unsolved problem is, what to do with the tons and tons of nuclear waste? The cost of actually solving this is not even calculated into the energy price now, it is our children and their children who will have to pay for it, when it is becoming a real problem.

To me, all this looks a lot like the result of massive lobbying of the established energy industry. Of course they are very scared to loose their nuclear plants before they actually paid off, and of course, they want to leech the existing ones as long as possible. I completely understand that. But I don’t understand the logic by which they try to convince the masses that this is a good idea. Strangely enough, the masses even seem to believe them, despite the couple of accidents last year in some nuke plants.

Frankly, I think safety is not the biggest problem of nuclear energy. What I really question is, if nuclear energy makes sense from an economical POV. In my logic, it is much more sustainable to have energy that actually regenerates, and which you can produce to a certain degree in your own country. I know that the current green power options are not able yet to cover the large energy demands NOW, but at some point we have to start investing in that, because in 50 years or so we don’t have an option anymore. Even now we can see that ‘green’ power doesn’t have to be more expensive that conventional power, and even now it is actually more stable than conventional energy. Think for yourself.

If you are worried about skyrocketing energy prices, it would be a good idea to switch to green power now. (But please, look after certification. There are so many fake green energy providers, who are not actually investing in ecological energy at all.) In this capitalistic world, money is YOUR way to change the world. There’s no excuse for whining that you can’t do anything anyway against all the big political and economic machinery. You can do, and you should start now.