What can a trillion dollars buy?

A stimulus package of about $800 billion, plus another $350 billion or so as financial bailout. A trillion dollars, just like that. These are big numbers, even Dr. Evil got confused.

Mint.com has a series of graphics showing what 1 trillion dollars actually mean.

That’s the GDP of Australia, China and Spain combined.

If you laid one dollar bills end to end, you could make a chain that stretches from earth to the moon and back again 200 times before you ran out of dollar bills.

One trillion dollars would stretch nearly from the earth to the sun.

It would take a military jet flying at the speed of sound, reeling out a roll of dollar bills behind it, 14 years before it reeled out one trillion dollar bills.

A million dollars a day for 2,000 years is only three-quarters of a trillion dollars.

How does it look like?

A man and 1 trillion dollars

A man and 1 trillion dollars

Comparing bears

Comparing bears

An useful and interactive graphic from the New York Times comparing historical bears. Current one has been considered “epic“.

But as the movie below shows, there is hope. Some even say the worst has already passed

Robert Shiller, one of the guys behind the S&P Case-Shiller Index, spoke at Seattle Pacific University; his presentations focused on the role that psychology plays in economic markets. The primary thesis is that economic markets are strongly influenced by psychology that seems rational to individuals, but on the whole is “collective madness”.

During the session, Shiller mentioned a localized Los Angeles housing bubble in 1885, describing the mentality in 1885 Los Angeles as people thinking “Los Angeles is special!” He quoted from an article in the LA Times which was published during the aftermath of the collapse in 1886:

We Californians have learned something. And that is that home prices can’t just go up forever—they have to be supported by something. Never again will Californians make this mistake.

SeattleBubble.com has the notes of the presentation and even the audio. Interesting.

Eight police officers two civilian staff serving with Strathclyde Police, Scotland’s largest force, listed their official religion as Jedi in voluntary diversity forms.

Jane’s Police Review editor Chris Herbert, who requested the information, made fun of the situation:

The Force appears to be strong in Strathclyde Police with their Jedi police officers and staff. Far from living a long time ago in a galaxy far, far away, some members of the noble Jedi order have now chosen Glasgow and its surrounding streets as their home.

About 390,000 people listed their religion as Jedi in the 2001 Census for England and Wales. In Scotland the figure was a reported 14,000. With these numbers surrounding him, the funny editor shouldn’t grow too proud of this technological terror he has constructed. The ability to destroy a planet is insignificant next to the power of the Force.

Do, or do not. There is no try.

Do, or do not. There is no try.

At this point everybody knows it: Arlen Specter, the longest-serving Senator in Pennsylvania history, will switch parties and join the Democrats.

Lots of blog posts are seeing this move as good for the Democrats. But nobody mentions the betrayal of 2,925,080 people who, in 2004, voted for a Republican Specter.


Spains newest solar tower

Spain's newest solar tower

A second solar tower is now in operation near Seville, Spain.

Wikipedia says “a solar tower configuration uses a field of mirrors to concentrate sunlight onto a receiver held in the tower. The heat creates steam which turns a turbine to make electricity”.

This new Spanish solar tower, called PS20, is the largest in the world with a capacity of 20 megawatts. It will surely be a hit on Google Earth.

For comparison, that is as much as the Salton Sea Geothermal power plant produces in Imperial County CA, or the Copco #1 Hydroelectric plant up in the Klamath river.

Classic Star Wars sleeping bag simulates the warmth of a Tauntaun carcass

"Classic Star Wars sleeping bag simulates the warmth of a Tauntaun carcass"

At ThingGeek.com. Enough said.