My wife and I have started a new web site:

It’s a “best of youtube” web site, where you can sit and watch one fun thing after another, without having to sift through the junk. My wife and I take suggestions, watch them, and tag them so you can easily watch a single topic of videos (such as classical music, or satire)

I’m very much looking for suggestions of great youtube videos.

Please: email me with youtube urls that you think are amazing.

Not to worry, I’m still very much on BookMooch, this just seemed like a fun side project.

My wife blogged the launch:

she wrote:

YouTube is another of those internet phenomenons that comes along every few years.

John and I are always emailing each other and our friends (and vice versa) with links to great videos on YouTube. Sometimes when I go to YouTube for a particular video, the related videos are just as good. But more often they are not.

The common reaction to YouTube is “what a bunch of crap” and it is. That’s what’s so fabulous about it. Anyone can post their home-made video, no matter how bad it is. But many of them are great.

So, how do you find the great videos on YouTube? John had the idea to start a blog that embedded our favorite YouTube videos so they would all be together in one place. We brainstormed over some names and came up with:

John actually came up with that name. All the names I thought of weren’t available, wah. We started it about a week ago and have been collecting our favorite videos. We also welcome suggestions for videos and will include the ones we like in TubeClan.

We hope you enjoy watching these videos as much as we do.

Read More, Consume Less

January 10, 2008

This interesting blog entry asks “Could your reading appetite be causing greenhouse emissions and the degradation of our forests?” and gives some interesting stats:

  • The paper industry is the largest consumer of forests in the Southern US, currently logging an estimated 5 million acres of forests (an area the size of New Jersey) each year. (USFS SFRA, 2001)
    Over 40% of the trees cut in British Columbia are used to produce paper (Markets Initiative, 2001)

  • One out of eight animal species in BC is at risk of extinction, according to the BC Ministry of Environment. Logging was identified as one of the primary contributing causes (BC Ministry of Environment, State of the Environment Report 2000).
  • Most of the world’s paper supply, about 71 percent, is not made from timber harvested at tree farms but from forest-harvested timber, from regions with ecologically valuable, biologically diverse habitat. (Toward a Sustainable Paper Cycle: An Independent Study on the Sustainability of the Pulp and Paper Industry, 1996)
  • The pulp and paper industry is the single largest consumer of water used in industrial activities in OECD countries and is the third greatest industrial greenhouse gas emitter, after the chemical and steel industries (OECD Environmental Outlook, p. 218)
  • Plant a tree with each book

    January 10, 2008


    Yesterday I had lunch in Sausalito with Eylon Israely, co-founder of Eco-Libris.

    The idea behind Eco-Libris is very simple: they sell a $1 sticker you can put on the back of a book which indicates that Eco-Libris will plant a tree with that $1.

    1 book = 1 sticker = 1 tree.

    It turns out they plant 1.3 trees for every dollar (ie, 4 trees for every $3) because about 1/3rd of planted trees don’t make it, and the goal is to have surviving trees, not just to plant them. So it’s not really that $1 gets you a tree planted, but that $1 gets you a surviving, healthy tree. Even better!

    Eco-Libris takes a small percentage of the $1 to sustain themselves, and then contracts out with 3 different tree-planting non-profit organizations they’ve selected, in Africa and Central America.

    Ecol On average, people buy a $25 pack of stickers from Eco-Libris.

    Eylon discovered BookMooch a few months ago and has sent about 30 books so far. He and I share a passion for Scottish Science Fiction, such as authors Charles Stross, Iain Banks. As it happens, I’m currently reading Banks’ The Player of Games.

    Eylon puts a $1 Eco-Libris sticker on each book he sends out via BookMooch. Almost immediately after signing up with BookMooch, he had another moocher “smooch” him and declare they’d smooch anyone who sent them a book with a purchased Eco-Libris sticker on it.

    Clearly, the BookMooch community was a natural fit with the Eco-Libris community.

    Eylon and I are going to do a mini-partnership, where:

    1) for every 10 trees you help get planted (ie, 10 stickers bought) the Eco-Libris BookMooch account will give you 1 mooch point. Make sure you indicate your BookMooch account name in the comments when you buy the stickers. I’ve donated 30 points from the charitable fund to start them off, and if you like what they’re doing, please donate Eco-Libris a few mooch points.

    2) Eco-Libris will promote this to their community, which will bring on some new members to the mooching universe.

    3) read books, plant trees, hurrah!