The image you see isn’t that of the world’s tallest shuttlecock, but rather a rendering of how the X-Seed 4000 would look. Designed as a green urban solution for the high population density city of Tokyo, this solar powered supercomplex is designed to accommodate between 500,000 and one million permanent inhabitants. More pics of the design wonder can be found here.
Science gets its own version of YouTube with ScieVee, a social video site that focuses on (you guessed it) science matters. Viewers can browse by tag, keywords, or discipline, and the material is divided into two main categories: Pubcasts (which deal strictly with peer-reviewed publications) and Videos (which covers just about everything else.) It’s still pretty new, but I’ll be curious to see if this takes off.
I’m pretty firmly in the patent reform camp, so I was happy to see that the Patent Reform Act made it past a House vote on Friday, but the Senate fight doesn’t look good. Opponents of the bill (which is mostly aimed at destroying the patent troll industry) think that the big tech firms want the Act as a means of squashing the little guys, while the other side sees this as a grossly overdue attempt at reforming our notoriously awful patent process and enforcement. However the real problem with our patent process (which isn’t addressed in this bill) has much more to do with how patents are actually granted, and how badly understaffed and under financed the Office of Patent and Trademarks really is.
In other legal/science news, Sen. Amy Klobuchar (D-MN) and Sen. Jay Rockefeller (D-WV) introduced a bill to the house that looks to overhaul our Cellular industry by forcing companies to allow customers longer grace periods, less costly termination fees, and a generally more transparent manner of accounting. Here’s hoping it gets some legs.