Jacob Chambers

Lafayette, IN, United States

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Jacob Chambers
Posted almost 2 years ago
What are the arguments for and against philosophy in high school?
Philosophy is quintessential to the human life. We use philosophy to gain understanding of our surrounding world. Be it through the creation or manipulation of schema, creating ethical drive for a common goal, or to put our minute self in perspective with an infinite universe. Philosophy is a tool we have created to further enhance the meanings of life. It has given rise to critical thinking, logic, culture, government (for good or bad) and gave birth to modern day sciences. Philosophy is part of everyday life yet we as a society seem to ignore its existence. We should equip teachers with the ability to teach historical philosophy within the classrooms at every level. Students should actively participate in lectures, even teaching the lectures . As a teacher, Socrates' method produced illuminated students who's grasp on logic and critical thinking lead to many great advances in Western civilization. This dialectal form of learning provides a stimulating environment that encourages the acceptance of many ideas until the most suitable resolution is found. Personally I believe we should challenge our education systems throughout the world to embrace a more philosophical backing in their approach to learning process. I believe that empowering students to think and create their own realizations of the world would be arguably one of the greatest things we could do for future generations. Hopefully more people will bring this debate to life and encourage its growth into a fruitful endeavor at creating a better tomorrow.
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Jacob Chambers
Posted about 2 years ago
Retrofitting greenhouses to make them more viable for desert agricultural production
The Anupam Mishra talk is absolutely wonderful and fascinating. He brings up a point about mixing art and architecture which I really believe is missing today. As for the actual conversation it is amazing the efficiency of these water collection systems in the Golden Desert. The water tower collection idea is very interesting as well. It seems that it would be easy to implement. Thanks for all the great links Kurt.
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Jacob Chambers
Posted about 2 years ago
Retrofitting greenhouses to make them more viable for desert agricultural production
I want to thank everyone for the great feedback. The first comment I would like to address is the water issue. If the greenhouses were close to ocean shores I believe that a system discussed in this talk would work for a water collection system though maybe only partially.http://www.ted.com/talks/michael_pawlyn_using_nature_s_genius_in_architecture.html . From this talk it seems possible from their discoveries that terraforming deserts could be a not so distant future. If ocean mists are not available then tapping an aquifer would be necessary and responsible irrigation could ensure the protection of the aquifer. As for the lighting issue, I currently attend Purdue University and have witnessed first hand their implementation of LED lighting in agricultural production http://www.agriculture.purdue.edu/agcomm/agnews/public/story.asp?newsid=3033. The idea behind using the flexible PV for covering greenhouses is to cut down on heat transfer into the greenhouses. http://news.cnet.com/8301-17938_105-20078431-1/mit-demos-flexible-solar-panels-printed-on-paper/ . By reducing this heat transfer you would be creating a more ambient temperature while installing the proper infrastructure to control the greenhouse climate. I really liked the idea of using both warm and cool greenhouses for climate control. What about implementing a control system that could use backdrafts, negative and positive pressures and convection in the pursuit of a stable greenhouse climate? Also I'd like to hear more on using a reservoir or piping for climate control. Robert, I looked into the Biosphere project and it is extremely interesting. They are doing studies a little bit more grandiose in scope than this discussion but I can see the relation quite clearly. I would recommend anyone not familiar with the Arizona Biosphere project look into it. Thanks for the input, keep it coming.
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Jacob Chambers
Posted about 2 years ago
What do you think is the biggest technological challenge the human race will face in the next 30 years?
The establishment of an agricultural system that is capable of meeting our needs while also reducing its impact on the environment will be one of the biggest challenges we face. We as a society, with the aid of large corporations, are quickly depleting biodiversity, increasing susceptibility to crop diseases, and polluting heavily with the use of ag-petrol chemicals/fuel. Biodiversity is what keeps an eco-system thriving and if we learn to work with it instead of against, its easy to see nature is capable of completing the same tasks as the chemicals we use. The organic/sustainable movement is working diligently to show us that local and seasonal can be much more rewarding than a mass transit ag system. The integration of buffer crops, green cover manure crops, crop rotation and selective pest management can offer gardeners and farmers alike a system that does not increase soil toxicity, kill wild plant species/ insects, or deplete organic matter from the soil. This can lead to higher yields and higher quality products with less chemical input. Our increase in susceptibility to crop diseases is two fold, one being the method of growing large mono-cultures and two being the heavy use of chemicals to treat disease, which leads to increased resistance. With the advent of chemical ready crops and BT crops, we are creating more resistant diseases. With proper implementation bio-diverse farming could help alleviate some of the dependence on such draconian techniques while helping the bottom line of the farmer. Finally there is the issue of fuel and how the agriculture system moves. There should be a push to get off of fossil fuel products for propulsion and chemical bases. Rather it is conversion over to CNG, bio diesels or some other source removing foreign, dirty fuels from farming would make it cheaper and cleaner for farmers. This has many added benefits and with soon to be 10 billion mouths to feed, we need to start addressing these issues if we are to succeed.
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Jacob Chambers
Posted over 2 years ago
Why has "green consumption" of sustainable products (e.g. Whole Foods, Toyota Prius) not permeated electricity consumption?
The problem begins with the fact the US has never had an energy policy/plan, as Mr. Picken's points out during his TED talk. America has grown up using oil, natural gas and coal to power its mighty factories, schools, and homes. People were led to believe that coal was going to be the power source for America for years to come due to its abundance in the US. This is no longer the case, as we have learned more about global warming and the effects of greenhouse gases on the weather patterns of our planet. It is going to take a government mandate and subsidies to force power production to move in the direction of cleaner and more sustainable. The idea of a carbon tax is great except it creates a way for companies to still pollute by diverting carbon credits.(For lack of space I cannot elaborate further on the trading of carbon credits)Rather or not this requires cutting all subsidies to dirty power production or not, I'm not here to say, but what I can say with relative confidence is that we no longer have a choice of when we are going to make the change, but how? TED conferences have seen a large amount of ideas on addressing the power issue. It will be the culmination of these ideas that will help us begin to move towards a more sustainable, cleaner future. As part of this move we must take nuclear power seriously, we need to invest in wind and solar, but also tidal, geo-thermal, hydro, ultraviolet energy transfer. The list goes on and on, and we cannot bank on only one or two types of energy production. We will need a vast, smart, integrated grid that is hyper efficient and is capable of meeting the ever growing power demands of society and the solution to those demands is not 2-dimensional but multi-dimensional.