Sustainability and electronics

In many rich countries, people can live in a world full of possibilities. There is a huge selection of food, both in the shops and in the various cultural restaurants. Traveling is possible without limits. Almost every little part of earth is accessible in one way or another. In terms of energy, we are no longer dependent on one specific substance. But we may have a choice. More and more research is being done on better and pure raw materials. We don’t seem to know any limits anymore. And although we live without limits, we would like to leave a healthy earth for the next generations. Do our children have a sustainable future?

Sustainability educational material for children

Read more about common mistakes in buying a new tablet >>>

Do we understand climate change and a sustainable future?

Climate change, everyone is talking about it. But do you understand exactly what it means? A sustainable future, sustainability and climate change are complex topics, which are important to understand. We need to know the facts from the earliest history of climate changes, and also research, causes, consequences and measurements. These are many different parts that are all falling under the heading of climate change and sustainability.

For children there are special books on the market that explain this topic in an easy way. They explain how we can have a sustainable future by adapting today. Because let’s be honest. If we really want to change something, we need to understand it ourselves. And what is better than try to explain the problem to the next generation. If they understand this topic, then adults certainly understand.

Climate change, getting a closer look at it

Let us take a closer look at climate change. What does it mean that climate is changing? Climate change is a major deviation for long periods, compared to the normal climate patterns. The rapid changes that are taking place are worrying. Scientists do not know exactly why climate is changing so dramatically. Nor do they know how much the climate has changed. But a certain thing is that changes are partly caused by the actions of human being, by our (collective) actions.

What scientists have seen so far is that earth is warming up. This is visible in the layers of ice that are melting, and in the sea level that is rising. The gases emitted by factories, cars and planes seem to be an important guilty party. The large amount of gases affects the atmosphere. In addition, the large-scale clearing of forests also does not contribute to recovering our planet. And there are even more causes to mention.

A computer wit DNA??? How does it work >>>

How do we know all this information about climate change?

All these causes are being studied from space by satellites. In this way, we learn more and more about our climate on earth and the changes that are taking place. With satellites such as ESA’s Envisat, we learn more about climate change on our planet. These satellites also help us to predict better what the future will look like.

Some Envisat instruments map the greenhouse gases every day. Other satellites follow changes in temperature, ice, snow, lakes and forest surface. All the information that the satellites collect for us, is being studied by scientists. This information is very important to ensure that international agreements on reducing greenhouse gases are complied with. Just like the agreements about our climate in general. Complying the agreements is important at a level worldwide. Certainly now the signs are becoming more visible. So let us start understanding what this theme is all about. And let’s try to explain it to the next generation. That would be a great first step.

Wind mills

So, what is not true about climate change?

It is very good to explain what climate change means to the next generation. But unfortunately, reality outlined today, does not always contains the complete truth. Photos are often adjusted by Photoshop to make it less threatening, or more pathetic. For example, a little polar bear on a floating ice floe. It evokes a pathetic image. Nature organizations in particular like to respond to people’s emotions. Reality is often somewhat distorted to attract attention. Is it preferable that children know about reality? However, this can be difficult if even adults don’t always see the difference.

Or the information about the so-called climate deniers may also be viewed critically. They stimulate doubt by saying that it is not so bad. And to reinforce that power, excuses are invented to make sure that they don’t have to contribute to change. It is a good thing that children are aware of the real situation. And that they do not rely on the situation that is outlined for self-interest.

How children can help

Children best understand difficult problems when they can get started with practical examples. The adult generation has already come up with many solutions. But for a child these are not understandable and not feasible. What can a child do? Start by practical changes to show the different consequences.

A good start is to close the door when you leave the house. By leaving the doors open, the heat goes out and the cold comes in. Turn down the heating if it is warm enough in the house. Or put on a warm sweater more often, so that the heating can be turned down one degree. And a good start is to alert children to the unwanted addition of palm oil in, for example, peanut butter and chocolate spread. By explaining your actions a decisions, you learn children about the consequences of their actions.

Tropical forests are harvested and burned for the use of palm oil. Many rare animals and plants are driven away by the fire and the presence of people and machines. By a simple example, children will be willing to look for more sustainable sandwich spreads. So go with your child in search of palm oil-free peanut butter and chocolate spread. It exists, it tastes the same, but you do help nature and the awareness of the new generation.

Relating sustainability to children is therefore not such a bad plan at all. In this way, future generations can also live pleasantly on our planet Earth. Deploying change with this new generation is a very good plan. Look for books written especially for children. These are easily written, don’t contain lies or exaggerations and the current generation can usually learn something from it.

Buying a iPad or tablet

Are you thinking about buying a tablet? Then it is good to realize what exactly you are going to buy. There are many differences, in technology and in manageability. You have to know what to pay attention to. However, even more important is to know which errors you should avoid, before you actually purchase a tablet. In this article, we discuss the most common mistakes. A tablet is not a cheap product, so inform yourself well. And know the benefits before spending your money!

What to pay attention to when buying a tablet?

The market is very extensive and that is good. So there will be a tablet available for everyone’s specific demands. Expensive or cheap, with the latest technology or with less technologies and applications. Nevertheless, it is important to know the various options with regard to the operating system, hardware configuration and apps. To start, it is good if you make a list of the requirements that are important to you. That is a very good starting point. Yet it appears that when purchasing a tablet, many people make the same mistakes. To help you avoid these errors, we have listed the most common errors.

1. Ignoring the installed software on the tablet

If we buy a smartphone, the operating system appears to be very important. So you know in advance whether you prefer to go for iOS from Apple or for an Android operating system. The operating system determines for an important part the possibilities on the device. This means that the operating system of the tablet is of great importance. If you like Apple, choose the Ipad. But if you are not a fan of the Apple system, Windows tablets or Android tablets are great options too. Especially because Windows and Android work together very well.

Developers are constantly working to introduce the most advanced operating systems or new innovations. With the Android system on the tablet, it is important that you know that this can differ per manufacturer. Every manufacturer develops its own shell that is installed over the original Android system. This can cause mutual differences. Of course, the core of the Android operating system remains the same. It is also good to give attention to the operating system. It is important that the most recent version of the operating system is installed. The fact is that not all (Android) tablets get the latest version through an update.

A final important tip: look in advance at the online stores of the various platforms. Here you can see which applications can be downloaded. Windows has the Windows Store, iOS has the App Store and Android has Google Play. So check these stores before you buy your tablet.

iPad software

2. Pay attention to the connectivity options

A big choice in different types of tablets also means different choices in connecting in to the internet. It is good to determine in advance what will be the purpose of the tablet. For example, do you travel a lot? So your goal is working on the road? Then advanced connection options are what you have to look out for. Your tablet should have at least 3G, but preferably 4G availability. The possibility to insert a SIM card is always a good solution. In this way, you are always assured of an internet connection. Only the certainty that there is always a WiFi connection nearby, can save the extra costs for this component.

In addition to internet connectivity, think about Bluetooth and GPS. Do you have many accessories that you would like to connect? Then Bluetooth is the ideal option. Furthermore, a tablet has physical connections, like USB and HDMI. If you plan to use these connections, don’t forget to check whether these are available on the tablet you want to buy.

3. Don’t buy a tablet that doesn’t suit you

It sounds so simple, but it is a mistake that has been made by many people. They look for a tablet and come home with a device that does not meet their expectations. You may be wondering: how is it possible buying the wrong tablet? It simply can happen if you have not thought well about what you are looking for in a tablet, and what you want to do with it.

Do you want to use the tablet to watch videos and checking emails? Then a simple tablet is sufficient. The specifications do not have to be of the highest level. But if you are looking for a tablet to work on for several hours, make sure that the tablet is satisfactory. The tablet must be supportive. For example, a good keyboard may not be forgotten. The tablet needs a connection for this. Or you choose a hybrid tablet that includes the keyboard. The operating system is also important when the tablet is frequently used for work. The Windows Surface Pro models are ideal. But the manufacturers of Android and Apple have also caught up in this area.

In addition to all the points mentioned, don’t forget the camera. Certainly, when there are frequent video conversations. The memory and capacity for storing these videos of course has to be sufficient.

Tablet to replace computer

4. A tablet to replace your computer

The development of the tablet has grown enormously in the last few years. Yet it is a big mistake when you think that a tablet can replace your desktop or laptop. A tablet is not a computer. Of course, most tablets can easily be used for an entire day. But soon you will notice that the tablets do not have all the software you need. The Windows tablet can be an exception to this. The problem with most tablets is that they do not use the full version of a program. Because it is a tablet, this is ideal. But when you use the tablet with the idea that you are going to work with a laptop, you will definitely be disappointed. And despite the fact that increasingly powerful and extensive tablets are being manufactured, the tablet cannot yet replace the computer.

Now you know which mistakes better not to make, choosing a good tablet will be easier. Don’t be guided by a cheap price, but by what is important to you. Then you will certainly be able to choose a good tablet that fits your expectations.

DNA computer

About 50 years ago, can you remember what kind of computers we had? The smallest computers in the world were the size of a house. The smallest computers were very big and they consumed a lot of electricity. Of course they needed a lot of space, because of the heat they produced. A computer in those days produced way more heat, which caused problems now and then.

Newer generation computers were produced with smaller components. Like small microprocessors and smaller electronic components. This other way of producing, allowed computer to shrink in size. And this had a great consequence, as computers could grow in power. The very first microprocessors were actually built on real conventional silicon chips. And how technology changed all over the years, de microprocessors are still made with the same basic technology. That means that they still rely on the same material, silicon based. Silicon is a great material. But yet it is not the best material and certainly not the most dependable.

Robot computer

After years of research the best investigators have discovered a better alternative. The answer is in the believe that the secret of a super powerful computer is in the DNA. Which means that a computer grows as it calculates. This information is based on a big project from the University of Manchester. They discovered that using DNA strands for storing and calculating data, could be the answer for the future. This means that microchips who are using DNA, can solve complex problems much faster than traditional microprocessors.

So what makes DNA a better alternative than silicon microchips?

I was surprised about this new technology. You too? Then of course you want to know what makes DNA microchips so interesting. And why are they much faster than the chip that is currently available? The answer is that DNA computers can work simultaneously on two problems that are totally different. So the process can be described as searching for different information at the same time. But coming from two different ways. So that makes it a lot faster to find difficult information in a maze. Because if you can imagine that your computer is searching for one specific part of information, and when it comes to a point where it can go left or right, a traditional computer has to choose. And when the right information could not be found, it has to go back en take the other way.

Traditional computers work with bits that can have a value of 0 and 1. The DNA computer has four possibilities at the same time. It is called A, C, G and T. So it is very clear that a DNA computer can process much faster, which is very useful for complex calculations. Where a conventional computer needs many years to solve complex math problems. And now I speak about hundreds of years. A DNA based computer can solve the same complex math problem in hours.

So it is very interesting to use a DNA computer for trying to solve a problem that previously seemed insoluble.

Advantages computer

Are there more advantages of DNA computers?

Yes, there are more. Let’s talk about storage. DNA computers can store a large capacity of data. Conventional computers with silicon processors have a maximum storage capacity. It depends on the size of the chip. But it will never be more than a few terabytes of data per chip. Of course that is a lot of data storage. But on the other hand we have the DNA chip. And one gram of DNA, could store more than 100 billion terabytes of data. During the years, the DNA microprocessors are much smaller. So you can equip an average desktop with more than one DNA microprocessor. This allows you to achieve a higher storage capacity and a higher speed. In theory you could say that, because the DNA is so small, a desktop could use more processors than all the conventional computers in the world together. So a DNA computer will perform better than the fastest supercomputer in the world, in only a fraction of the energy.

Another benefit of using DNA storage, is the stability and durability. It is proved that DNA can last for thousands of years at a temperature below freezing. The most digital data nowadays, such as SD cards of USB sticks, they will last for approx. 10 years. If they are handled with care. CDs or DVDs have a lifespan that is even shorter. They will last for two to five years with a regular use. So here we speak about complete different story, as we speak about DNA.

The development of DNA computers

When the DNS computer is so fantastic, why are we using still traditional computers? And why are we satisfied with a storage that is limited in capacity? It’s nothing more than the high costs, that is delaying the development. Even the smallest bit of information in DNA still costs a fortune. To have an idea: one megabyte of DNA stored data costs around $12,500. The good news is, that compared to previous years, the price of this technology has gone down. So the expectation is that this technology will be cheaper in the next years.

We can conclude that a DNA computer offers a great potential for the future. But there is still a lot of work to do! And even the existing computers are great to handle, the prospect is that soon we will get more efficient, super-fast DNA computers. Which has a mega storage capacity. You can imagine that this part will be very interesting for companies all over the world. Microsoft has already announced that it will start with the development of a computer based on DNA. So once the first model is fully developed it will be used for hospitals and confidential information from the police departments around the country.

I can’t deny there is also another side to this story. A computer with a DNA sounds a lot like a human being. Is this the start towards a computer that thinks like a human being? Sometime more to investigate by Tweaks2k2.