Saturday, May 24, 2008

JJNN 3 May 24th, 2008

Today I will be going over 3 news stories that grabbed by interest. The major question is to go over the perverted one first or last...last!

The first story is about the amount of CO2 measured at different places in Japan. The original story is here. Over the last 10 years, the total amount of CO2 in the atmosphere in Japan has been going up by an average of 2 ppm (parts per million) a year.

2 ppm may seem a big deal or it may not. Let's do a little calculation to how much that actually is. Assuming that the measurements for CO2were taken at near sea level the number of atoms/molecules in the atmosphere is around 2x1019 (This information is taken from here.) So 2 in every million atoms and molecules would be CO2 or 4x1013 molecules of CO2 on average are going into the atmosphere every year in Japan. Carbon dioxide has a molar mass of around 44 g/mol. 1 mol is 6x1023 so if you work everything out it comes out to about 3x10-9g of CO2 being put into the atmosphere on average every year just detected over Japan. It is up to the people that read this to take of that fact what they will. (By the way, if there is a flaw in my calculations let me know).

Story number 2 is found here. This is a story that hit home for me because of my work as a teacher. Almost all schools in japan have offical web sites, but a lot of them also have the unofficial "ura" (a word in Japanese meaning something like behind the scenes in this case) web sites. Those sites are usually text BBS where students can talk to each other and talk about the school. The only problem with this is that many cases crop up in which a student's real name is said and they are cyber-bullied on the ura-site. Years back, a person living in Japan couldn't go a couple of months without hearing about another case of that happening.

The particular case that is discussed in the news article happened in August of 2006 in Osaka. One jr. high school student was publicly (well on the BBS) slandered by other students from the same school. The posts were found and the owner of the site was told over 88 times by the student's parents to take down the posts. The owner refused and ended up getting sued by the student's parents. He was found guilty and had to pay 550000 yen to the family. But, the student felt she could no longer go to that school so she changed schools and stopped going to her cram school as well. It was found that near 30% of the ura-sites have some sort of cyber-bullying so there will probably be more stories like this coming out in the future.

And, all I really have to say about the last story is "When you've got to go, you've got to go." The orignal story is found here. In Mie prefecture on the 23rd a 38 year old man who worked part time for a news paper was arrested for going up to person's drying laundry and peeing on it. It's a short, but sweet, news story. It also turns out that the newspaper company that that man works for is the biggest rival of the newspaper company that broke the news story. Got to love it.

Any way, that's it for today. See you next time at JJNN.

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