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The open source solution to the bee colony collapse problem

open source beehive designs

Last year, a third of honeybee colonies in the United States quite literally vanished. Commercial honey operations, previously abuzz with many thousands of bees, fell suddenly silent, leaving scientists and beekeepers alike scratching their heads. The reasons remain mostly a mystery for what is called Colony Collapse Disorder—a disturbing development of the drying up of beehives throughout the industrialised world.

Unfortunately, there's a lot more to the problem than simply running out of honey. Bees are one of the most abundant pollinators in the natural world. They are the unsung, unpaid facilitators of human agricultural practices and have been for as long as we have sewn seeds. Their disappearance would spell disaster for our food supply, with some estimating our species lasting only four years on this planet without them. So, what can be done? » Read more

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Upcoming global discussion on open government, big data, and innovation

open government

The Gigabit City Summit is set to host a diverse, dynamic range of speakers on the topics of open government, big data, and innovation on Tuesday, September 25, 2012 from 7:00 am to 9:00 am CDT.

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Can citizens use open source to create legislation?

two-way street sign

In recent weeks we've seen a number of projects in the area of collaborative legislation that operate similarly to open source software. Today, you can find French, German, and Swiss proposals in git repositories. If you're a developer familiar with these tools, it's easy for you to review the patches (bills), submit your own, and collaborate around the code (law). These are exciting projects undertaken by people in many different countries, but very few governing bodies appear to be harnessing their citizens' input. » Read more

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How the open source culture could impact climate change

Ever wonder what you get when you leverage the power of the open source culture to combat global warming? I didn't. Until I heard about Coalition of the Willing--an animated film about an online war against global warming in a post-Copenhagen world. This is collaboration, participation, and meritocracy coming together to tackle a world-wide issue.

We got a chance to catch up with Timothy Rayner, a writer and philosopher based in Sydney, Australia, and asked him to tell us more about this project. He wrote Collation of the Willing with British film-maker Simon Robson. I exchanged a few emails with Tim, we chatted  on the phone, and I couldn't  wait to share Coalition of the Willing with the opensource.com community. » Read more

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