Reviews, Technology.

Moving inexorably to the Kindle

After my family gave me a Kindle a while back, I was skeptical of its ability to fully replace a bound book, but after some experimentation, I found the Kindle e-reading device more useful than expected, yet remained a fan of the book-in-hand.  By the time I had read through the devices of my Kindle perhaps fifteen books and after a certain amount of experimentation, I gradually became enamored enough of the Kindle to make it my primary mode for reading books.  What was the tipping point?  And why still prefer a bound book on occasion?

Essays, Politics-Government, Technology.

The superweed and GMO crops

Superweeds are weeds that cannot be killed with the usual pesticides used by by today's agro-businesses, such as Roundup. They have begun to pop up in fields that grow crops which have been genetically modified (GMO) to increase their resistance to pesticides. This allows farmers to use Roundup more liberally to kill weeds. This approach worked very well at first, but after a prolonged overexposure of the weed population to Roundup, weed species resistant to Roundup have been selected. This is a serious agricultural problem, as these weeds lower the yield, increase the cost of harvest, and remain a problem that is not easily solved. Why is this strategy employed, when agronomists predicted that such an outcome was inevitable? Why not just move to organic farming, eliminating the use of chemical pesticides, which like antibiotics, are indiscriminate in destroying both pests and beneficial organisms?