In this edition : The blogosphere rallies to aid Haiti’s reconstruction; French net users commemorate one hundred years since the Great Paris Flood; And a site allows users to obtain items belonging to serial killers.
After the rescue mission, it’s time for reconstruction. While the international community rallies to put Haiti back on its feet in the wake of the earthquake, several online initiatives are attempting to put their shoulder to the wheel.
Created by a communication agency, the site ‘youaidhaiti’ is urging net users to send in videos to share messages of support with Haiti. Each video posted will generate funds thanks to site sponsors to help with the country’s reconstruction. Dozens of videos have already been posted online.
US actor, Ben Stiller has launched the site, Stillerstrong. The aim being to construct temporary schools to help children get back into the classroom as soon as possible. And to encourage appeals for donations, Ben Stiller has gathered together a whole host of celebrities in videos created especially for the occasion. Robert DeNiro and Bill Clinton have thus contributed to the effort.
A project in partnership with the NGO ‘Architecture for Humanity’, specialised in seeking architectural solutions to catastrophic events. This one is contributing its collaborative tool the ‘openarchitecture network’, which allows designs ideas and projects to be pooled to help establish a long term reconstruction plan.
Meanwhile on share sites, many net users are posting suggestions. This Canadian man suggests that his country offer, including other things, construction wood, which is less polluting than cement.
100TH anniversary of the great Paris flood
January 28 1910 heralded the end of the Great Paris Flood which partially submerged the city. 100 years on, the blogosphere looks back on this exceptional event and wonders whether such a catastrophe could repeat itself.
Many sites, such as these look back at photos of the damage caused by the rising waters in the French capital. Shots which give a better idea of what Parisians experienced at the time.
This portal, created by the French Government offers satellite maps to visualise the extent of the 1910 flooding but also neighbourhoods which could be affected if Paris and its region were flooded again. Flooding which today would have much more serious consequences than one hundred years ago, particularly because of the boom in urbanisation.
Alarming information confirmed by this expert, who declares here that if Paris experienced another exceptional flood, the city would take several months or even years to put its infrastructure back on its feet.
‘That means that we would enter into a kind of chaos and the city would become uninhabitable, in a radius of a few hundred meters around the Seine, no more, for several months, several quarters of even more than a year’
Despite these catastrophic forecasts, some have decided to see the funny side of a modern day flood. The creator of this montage has drawn a transformed Paris, its inhabitants travelling around using sailing boats and spotting dolphins.
And this female video blogger had fun trying out different types of makeshift rafts-hand made to avoid being stranded at home during a major flood.
Youtube as just launched a new online film rental service. The first films available via the share site are those presented at the Sundance festival in 2009 and 2010. Baptised ‘YouTube Rentals’, the service is currently reserved for US net users but if the experiment is successful, Google may use the system world-wide.
Serial killer ink
Here is a somewhat tasteless site. Net users can acquire items, paintings and letters once belonging to American serial killers and notorious criminals. Inquisitive types can buy a copy of Charles Manson’s driving licence for 375 dollars or a drawing by Gary Bowles for 100 dollars.
Video of the day
Attempting acrobatic moves which are all more crazy and dangerous than each other on the rails and scaffolds of a roller coaster: this is the challenge set by the creators of this video. An impressive show which captivated spectators. But it is of course not recommended to try out these stunts without suitable training.