Sunday, November 30, 2014

Types of Business Defenses


Soldiers use camouflage in their uniform so as to hide from the enemy and not be easily seen. This is similar to what many organisms do, they use colors that are close or similar to their background in order not to be easily spotted by predators.

Types of Business Defenses

Animals use a number of methods to protect themselves from falling prey to a predator. Some organisms would try to be less visible by employing camouflage, such are the ones which are edible. Others, which are inedible or poisonous, would actually do the opposite and display their colors vividly in order to warn predators not to come near. Still others that are edible would try to mimic the colors and shapes of the poisonous organisms so that predators would be tricked into thinking they are poisonous too and avoid eating them!

It is interesting how in the human world similar methods may be used weather in business or by armies. Some 'edible' businesses may try to hide from 'predictors' by keeping a low profile. Other 'inedible' businesses may actually display themselves very vividly showing to everyone that they cannot be consumed. Still other businesses would try to mimic the same display of the 'poisonous' businesses to avoid being harassed by preying businesses. The same methods can also be seen in various kids of armies.

Saturday, November 29, 2014

Organism Defenses Inspire Armies

Organism Defenses Inspire Armies

The various defense systems present in plants, animals and other organisms can be taken as a model to inspire defense systems for armies. It is interesting to know that even plants have their own chemical 'weapons' something which can inspire chemical warfare. While chemicals released by plants can protect them from predators while leaving the plant itself unharmed, chemical weapons devised by humans must be used with care in order not to harm those who are releasing them.

Friday, November 28, 2014

Business Defenses

To continue with the metaphor of businesses being like organisms where some businesses 'consume' other businesses while some businesses enter into symbiotic relationships with other businesses there are also businesses that defend themselves against being 'eaten' by other larger or more aggressive business entities. An active organization should maintain passive as well as active means by which it protects itself from being preyed upon by other organizations.

Some businesses would employ camouflage to escape being pray to other 'predictor' businesses. Others might fight back to survive. Still others might try to withdraw and retreat to be safe.

It is interesting to note that as some organisms may be specialized in preying upon other specific organisms, also in the world of businesses some businesses might be specialized in preying upon particular types of other businesses.

Decay Sucking Up Nitrogen

Microorganisms consume a lot of nitrogen and little oxygen when decomposing plant remnants. That is why when a piece of wood decays inside a soil, the nitrogen content around it is dramatically reduced. This can cause plants growing nearby to wilt or die due to the reduced nitrogen content in the soil that has been transferred to the microorganisms that are decaying the wood. It is thus advisable not to include a lot of brown (wood) decaying material next to new plants in order not to deprive them from the nitrogen content present in the soil.

Wednesday, November 26, 2014

Feeders Inspire Business Models

The specialization of some organisms in eating specific parts in particular of a plant can be mirrored in the business world in businesses that have a specific niche and target a narrow client base. Other organisms consume a diverse set of plants and plant parts and can be mirrored in the business world in businesses that cover a wide range of different customers. Other types of feeders can be mirrored by other types of business organizations. It is very interesting to study the different type of feeders in ecology and biology and compare them to various types of businesses  in the business world. This can give us increased insight and even inspire improved or whole new business modes.

Tuesday, November 25, 2014

Business Food Chain

Business Food Chain

The food chain and types of relationships among various organisms in various levels of the food chain can be taken as a model for how businesses work in an economy. Some businesses prey on others, some compete with one another, some fall pray to others, some are like parasites that keep draining others and still some have mutually beneficial relationships with one another.

It is worthwhile to deeply exploring the ecological ecosystem and mirroring this on the business world to gain insights and inspiration.

Attracting Birds

In order to attract specific kinds of birds it would be advisable to research what kind of habitat such birds thrive in and try to make such habitat available for them. Growing specific types of trees is one good method to attract birds of specific desired types. In a dream house it would be nice to have various types of trees singing and flying around.

Food Vs. Oxygen in an Aquarium

Food Vs. Oxygen in an Aquarium

We are often advised not to put too much food for gold fish or any kind of small fishes we keep at an aquarium at home. The reason behind this, ecology says, is that when such nutrients decay they can consume a lot of the oxygen dissolved in the water that depriving the fish from such oxygen and consequently killing the fish in the aquarium. We thus should provide only enough food for the fish to eat at once.

Creating Compost

The sciences of ecology and biology can provide us with lots of knowledge and inspiration into creating excellent compost by understanding microorganisms and their interactions as well as the flow of nutrients.

Business Modeled on Plant Roots Behavior

Mountain Minerals and Plant Varieties

Plants need nutrients. It would be interesting to explore the idea that in places where there are mountains containing specific minerals, specific types of plants would grow that consume and need such type of minerals. Such plants do not have to live on the mountains themselves, but may live near them or live in a place where such minerals are being transported through rivers. The type of minerals found in mountains and in locations around the world might thus be indicative of what kinds of plants grow there in grow near the stream of water that transports such minerals which would be nutrients for such plants.

Minerals for Humans

It is interesting to consider the minerals that humans need. Which minerals does the body consume and need, what function or group of functions does each of those minerals play and which minerals are not needed by the body or even harmful to it?

When animals eat plants, the get access to minerals in such plants. Humans for instance can get the iron mineral by eating plants that are grown in iron rich soils.

Roots Adapt to Soil

Roots of plants develop in different ways according to the type of soil they are in. It is therefore not a good idea to move a plant by unrooting and removing all the soil around its roots and putting it in a different kind of soil. This would harm the plant and create a shock. If this is absolutely necessary, then it is a good idea to prune the roots when transplanting in order to encourage new growth of new roots that are adapted to the new type of soil.

Business Modeled on Plant Roots Behavior

The way roots expand can be taken as a model for creating new business. Roots are the 'mouth' of the plant. They are the part that a plant uses to obtain the resources of nutrients and water. Roots first 'explore' the soil around them by shooting a taproot then they start exploiting the resources once they have discovered where they are and 'how' to obtain them. Similarly, it would be a good strategy for a business that wants to obtain resources (usually money) to first go through a phase of exploration (market research) to see where the resources are and how they can be exploited then start stretching its services to exploit such resources.

Discovering Companion Plants

Studying ecology and plant biology can help us in determining which plants can work well as companion plants instead of just relying on trial and error. By checking to see the nutrient requirements of various plants, this could provide us with clues on which plants can best be grown next to one another benefiting each other and not competing with one another.

Saturday, November 22, 2014

Predicting Water Requirements of Plants

Predicting Water Requirements of Plants

It is possible to predict the rate of transpiration of plants in a specific area based on temperature, wind speed, solar radiation and other factors. There are complex models to predict that. It is interesting to use such models when planning for agriculture. This could help us determine the water requirements of plants.

Humid Plantations

One phenomenon I've noticed while sleeping over near or next to plantations in agricultural land in Egypt is the high rate of humidity at night. The weather feels very cold and the humidity is so high. One feels really sticky. It does not feel good at all. Now I understand that this is due to the high rate of transpiration of plants which loose a lot of water that holds still in the air and is not evaporated at night. It would be great to think of solutions for this phenomenon in order to make the atmosphere around such plantations more comfortable for humans to live in.

Friday, November 21, 2014

Soil Microorganisms

Soil Microorganisms

In permaculture, microorganisms in the soil have a crucial role to play in maintaining the health and well being of plants that are grown in that soil. Plants feed on nutrients that are provided by such microorganisms. By providing chemical fertilizers, tilling the soil a large proportion of such useful microorganisms are lost thus leading to the degradation of 'life' in the soil and thus plants suffer on the long term or become addicted to and dependent on the chemical fertilizers. Permaculture seeks to break such dependence and free plants and their carers making agriculture more sustainable.

Soil, Water and Plants

It is interesting how the size of particles in the soil, for instance sand having large particles, can affect the water holding capacity of such soil and the ability of plant roots to move and absorb water from it. Such things can be measured in order to determine the optimal conditions for a plant to grow and develop. It is interesting how such measurements can aid in planning for agriculture.

Thursday, November 20, 2014

Reusing Transpired Water

Plants transpire a lot of water, much more than the amount they actually use to build their 'body' parts. This phenomenon can be made use of in order to reuse water in the best way possible. For instance, plants that use water then transpire most of it can have other plants next to them that would use such water which in turn would have other plants around them that would use the water those plants transpire and so on. Even if there would be some loss of water at the end, it would not be as much as in the case where a plant transpires water and such water is never reused by other plants.

Wednesday, November 19, 2014

Roof Gardens

For green roofs in Egypt one should seek plants that are well adapted to the conditions of Egypt and would thrive on the rooftops of buildings in Cairo and other Egyptian cities. There is plenty of sun radiation on the roof during most of the year and there is plenty of CO2. Water is available too in apartment buildings. What is needed is the know-how. Through training and awareness programs such project can take off. It is vital to select plants that are well suited to such conditions rather than try to force growing varieties of plants that would require extra care when grown in the current Cairo rooftop conditions.

Cactus and succulents might be good candidates for growing on rooftops.

Tuesday, November 18, 2014

Indoor Plants

The C3, C4 and CAM pathways of how plants consume CO2 can provide us with a guide on which plants to use indoors particularly in bedrooms so that they do not exhale CO2 into the room thus posing a threat to people sleeping at night.

Monday, November 17, 2014

Multipass Learning

When learning about something, it could be useful to have a glimpse of it or a first pass over it from one angle then later on revisit the same concept again from a different angle or have a second pass over it from a different source. For instance, you might read about a specific concept from a book about ecology. You may later read about the very same concept in a textbook about biology. The terminology would probably sound familiar during this second pass. You would probably understand the concept more fully now while you might have not been able to grasp it completely during the first pass while you were reading about it in the ecology textbook.

Sunday, November 16, 2014

Nitrogen and CO2

It is interesting to know that not all plants convert CO2 into carbon in the same way. Nitrogen seems to help in assisting plants to make use of CO2 while at the same time making the plant able to loose CO2 as if nitrogen helps the plant to breath. It would be nice to look for the ultimate conditions and resources that a plant needs in order to develop and grow. This would be wonderful for food production and creating food forests.

Saturday, November 15, 2014

Carbon Dioxide

While the rise of CO2 is considered a harmful sign, yet I would be interesting to consider it as an increase in a resource that plants crave. The rise in carbon dioxide can be seen as an incredible resource upon which new growth and new plants can flourish. It would be good to use such a resource and use its abundance to grow much more forests.

Friday, November 14, 2014

Water and Plant Growth

Water and Plant Growth

When the stomata in plant leaves open up to take in CO2 for carry out photosynthesis it increases the rate of loss of water by the plant. When stomata are closed, water loss by the plant is reduced but CO2 is not allowed in and thus photosynthesis is inhibited. When water is scarce, plants may thus try to conserve water and photosynthesis is reduced. When water is plentiful, photosynthesis, given there is plenty of CO2 and sun radiation, becomes very active. This is why plants would flourish, grow faster and develop faster when provided with water. Conversely, plant growth and development is inhibited when water becomes scarce. [explanation]

Seasonal Cycles

The universe is in constant motion. Things change. Things move in circles and cycles. The seasons of the year are just one example of that. Deciduous trees shed their leaves in autumn and then grow them back in spring. Humans similarly wear warm clothing in winter and light clothing in summer. It is natural to interact with the seasons and change with them. Attempting to be rigid and still, not changing with the seasons, remaining constant in the face of change is not the natural way to go.

Biomimetics in the Desert

Desert plants use a number of tactics to withstand the heat. One of these tactics is having waxy leaves. It would be interesting to study this and other tactics for inspiration on how to make houses in the desert better able to withstand the heat without needing electric air conditioners. Sounds to me like an opportunity for biomimicry that can suit countries like Egypt where many new cities are being built in what was essentially a desert.

When to Water Plants?

During summer, particularly in temperate or warmer zones, it is best not to water plants during noon. If plants were watered at that time, the stomata in the leaves would open up to take in CO2 and perform photosynthesis. This could lead to a major loss of water due to heavy transpiration under strong sun radiation. That is why it is best to water plants during the early morning or late at night when the sun radiation is not too strong or absent.

Do: Read in biology.

Note: Reading and writing during the early morning is much more productive than later in the day.

Thursday, November 13, 2014

Rich and Poor People

Leaves of sun plants use a number of tactics to reduce the amount of light they absorb from strong sun rays while leaves of shade plants use opposite tactics to increase the amount of sun radiation they absorb. So if leaves of a sun plan receives 7 times more radiation than leaves of a shade plant, they would absorb only 4 times more radiation than those of the shade plant. This is an interesting phenomenon. People who are rich may waste a lot of their food or wealth while those who are poor can be much more efficient and make much better use of the resources available for them.

Wednesday, November 12, 2014

Abundance through Use

Trapping Carbon

Using the sciences of ecology and biology one can estimate the amount of carbon dioxide converted by plants and trapped into carbon by let's say a group of trees. This would be great in calculating carbon offsetting. It is nice how science can help us measure and thus make better more informed decisions.

Shade Plants

It would be good to know if shade plants give out less carbon dioxide at night than sun plants. If so, then shade plants would be safer to keep in doors at homes for they would then produce less carbon dioxide at night preventing suffocation hazards for residents.


We often find that weeds are resilient. We fight them but they come back. We keep fighting them yet they persist and survive even flourish. We can think of some phenomena in society or in our human communities as weeds. If we fight them, they might still persist and become even stronger in an attempt to survive. One way of dealing with such 'negative' phenomena is not to fight them and try to kill them but to try and understand them and see why in the first place have they flourished. It is then that we can devise solutions that would make use of such 'weeds' and keep them in check at the same time.

For instance, the phenomenon of street children in Egypt can be seen as a 'weed' problem. Trying to fight this negative phenomenon would take too much energy and would probably not provide a sustainable solution. Yet attempting to understand the reasons behind the outbreak of such phenomenon and making adjustments in the 'ecosystem' can lead to better balance and the gradual sustained disappearance of such phenomenon.

Abundance through Use

Ecology and biology tell us that the more a plant withdraws nutrients to feed its growing buds and other parts the more its leaves work and absorb energy through photosynthesis. This phenomenon is interesting and reminds us of a lactating mother, the more her baby suckles the more milk she produces. This concept of growth through use and abundance through use is common in nature and natural organisms. A muscle would only grow if you keep using it. Weight lifting can give you really large muscles. A muscle not in use would get smaller in size. The concept can even be used for writers. The more you write the more flow you find and the better you are able to produce writings. This concept of abundance by use contrasts sharply with the non-natural inanimate world of things. For instance, the more space you use in your computer's hard drive the less space will be available in it.

An additional example also on this same phenomenon is giving money for charity. They more you give the more money that will come back to you. [phenomenon]

Science in Agriculture

Agriculture in our current age has been affected by science. Not necessarily deep and comprehensive science but some selective science and in some occasions shallow science. The scientific method has affected agriculture and not always in a good way. We check for nutrients needed by plants and its different parts. What nutrients do leaves require, what nutrients do flowers require and so on. What nutrients and in which phase would make the plant grow larger in size and in the shortest time possible and preferably even out of season. Money has pushed the use of science in agriculture to in imbalance. We seek size of produce, amount of produce, less time to growth and not give much attention to taste or nutritional value. In the past, before science got involved with agriculture, people just relied on their observations and natural instincts and local knowledge to garden, grow crops and take care of plants. They did well producing flavorful fruits and veggies that were safe to consume and delicious to taste.

The best way ahead would be to use science, yet in a full and balanced way. If science was used in order to help use growth more flavorful more nutritious food that is sustainable and good in every way to the ecosystem in which it is grown then this would be the proper use of science and agriculture would cease to be a negative factor for the environment.

Tuesday, November 11, 2014

Socioeconomic Ecosystems

Plants and Sunlight

We used to study at school that plants need water, air and sunlight in order to live and grow. This information was hardwired in my brain so that when I grew up I just figured out plants need direct sunlight and the more you provide it the better. I was later astonished to find the leaves of my young plants withering under the harsh sunlight of summer during noon in Egypt. I then realized that yes plants do need sunlight but that too much of it can actually harm them. Of course it depends on the type of plant as well as the developmental phase in which the plant is. Some plants tolerate higher intensities of sunlight than others. As a plant matures, it can also tolerate higher intensities of sunlight. [story]

Computer Simulation

When designing a garden for landscaping purposes, it is essential to check out the incident light radiation at the location where the garden would exist. Using calculations from lat and long (gathered via GPS) as well as shade from existing structures (buildings) a computer simulation can tell us what kind of plants can be grown and where.

It would be interesting to devise a computer program, if such program does not already exist (which I doubt it does not), that would use artificial intelligence, perhaps a combination of genetic algorithms and neural networks, to propose some garden designs for a given location. You provide the program with the lat/long and altitude (GPS coordinates) of the location and a 3D sketch of the structures available in addition to some other variables related to preferences and constraints related to the desired garden and the program proposes to you a number of garden designs. The program can 'learn' by you feeding it with information about the various plants and their interactions with one another providing it with indigenous varieties to grow gardens in a permaculture way. It wold be interesting to design such program.

Such program would need the development of a computer model in order to simulate plant growth and interactions between plants. Such would be a very complex model. It can use neural networks in order to learn and develop such model or make it more accurate.

It would be nice if such program would also provide a maintenance plan for the garden providing instructions on how to care for it, when to water and so on. [do]

Ward El Neel

Water hyacinth (Eichhornia), which in Arabic is called "ward el neel" or literally "flowers of the Nile", presents a big problem in Egypt as it grown wild in the River Nile consuming a lot of water and blocking waterways. One reason given for such enormous growth of water hyacinth is the clarity of the Nile River water in Egypt that resulted from the building of the Aswan High Dam which prevents clay from entering the water stream. As a result of that, sunlight is able to reach into more depths of the water this breathing more life into the invasive plant. Before the building of the High Dam, an annual influx of fine sand, silt and clay used to enter the water stream darkening the color of the water and making it more or less opaque thus preventing sun rays from reaching into the depths of the river consequently preventing the invasive water hyacinth from having its current invasive behavior. [solution]

Evergreen and Deciduous

When designing a garden, one should take into account the deciduous and evergreen trees. It would be good to plan so that during autumn deciduous trees would shed their leaves bringing more sunlight to the evergreen trees if the latter were planted in the shade of the former. Moreover, the phases in which the garden will go through should also be taken into consideration. Plants will grow and develop and the garden will take a new shape as the years go by. This growth and development should be taken into account.


Interactions between plants are so intricate and complex that it is difficult to create a simulation of it using a computer model. It is thus not easy to predict with precision what takes place in the future for many plants growing together particularly so if the conditions in which they live are not being controlled. It would be still interesting to try to predict with precision how a tree would look like as it develops, which branches would grow, how many of them and in which directions. That would be an interesting exercise to work on.

Socioeconomic Ecosystems

The study of ecology and in particular ecosystems can provide useful insight into how interactions among natural systems works. Learnings from this field can then be used to provide more understanding of human social and economic interactions in the socioeconomic ecosystem.


It would be interesting to go visit places containing organism that one reads about in ecology. For instance, it would be nice to go visit water bodies where plankton exist and see and touch them in order to have a feel of what they really are and see them in their natural environment.


It would be nice to checkout the algae on the shores of Alexandria, Egypt and see what kind they are. They tend to be found on stones and rocks near the seashore.

Explaining Science

One good way to understand anything, no matter how complex, is to explain it using a story. If there is a scientific concepts that seems very difficult to explain and understand then one can just tell the story of how such concept was first discovered and how it developed till it reached its current state. By tracing the steps of scientists and their explorations and by revealing their journeys into reaching such concepts the human brain can easily understand and digest the most complex scientific concepts ever. Contrastingly, hiding such intermediary steps in the journey of discovery can make complex scientific concepts very tough to comprehend.

Shade Plants

It is good to study shade plants and sun plants. When growing plants indoors one should take care about such distinction. Sun plants grown indoors should best be kept near a window. Shade plants can be kept indoors with little incident light reaching them. The knowledge about sun and shade plants is essential for landscapers and garden designers.

Monday, November 10, 2014

Temperature, Growth and Development


It would be nice to fill up the space with plants everywhere crowding one another to capture the most amount of sun rays as possible thus not loosing any of it. This could lead to lush vegetation and a great storage of energy. If a lot of such trees and vegetation are edible, then we would be supplying the world with lots of food too by making the most use of sunlight through maximum photosynthesis.

Reflecting Sun Rays

Reflecting sun rays on plants using ponds has been a technique used in permaculture to provide plants with heat in colder regions. In contrast, solar panels have been used in above vegetation in agricultural land in hot regions in order to provide shade for the plants and at the same time collect energy from the sun!

Red Leaves

Leaves of plants are not always green. Sometimes when the leaves are still young, for instance, they are reddish in color. This might be that those young leaves in this phase of their development need a specific wavelength of sunlight and thus they have their non-green color to absorb the wavelength of sunlight they are in need of.

Temperature, Growth and Development

The rate of development of an organism tends to increase faster than the rate of growth of that organism as temperature increases. This concept is interesting and can be considered when one wants to grow trees and wants them to bear fruit as soon as possible. Mango trees may take several trees to bear fruit particularly of planted using seeds. Similarly date palm trees take several years to bear fruit. It would be interesting to consider how temperature could speed up the development phase. Thus dates might be smaller in size, as a result of increased temperature, while the date palm tree starts bearing dates in a shorter period of time.


It is interesting to reflect on the complexion of humans living in different geographic areas and to try to understand why each geographical region has its own complexion. People living in sun-stricken regions close to the equator in Africa tend to have dark complexions while those closer to the North Pole tend to have fair complexions. Why is this so? What results in this and what function does this have?

Sunday, November 9, 2014

Economies and Ecosystems

Human Ecology

It is interesting to look at humans from an ecological point of view. Perhaps this is what is called human ecology. Humans need specific conditions in order to survive and thrive. Humans also need resources. It would be interesting to consider resources available for humans from an ecological point of view.

War Over Resources

Wars usually arise among humans when there is competition for resources. This particularly takes places in when resources are scarce. In the past, such resources could have been food. In our current times, one example of an important resource is energy, in particular oil. Many wars can be waged for this valuable much needed resource. In the future, if water proves to be scarce, it could be a resource upon which wars of the future are fought..


The concept of succession and phases is interesting. The earth has changed and evolved throughout the ages. In the past, conditions on earth were suitable for specific organisms. As the earth evolved and those conditions changes, so did the abundance and distribution of organisms on it. The evolution of earth and organisms on it took place in phases where each phase led to the following one. This concept of succession of phases is referred to in different areas in the Quran. The concept of succession is also a central one in permaculture.

Economies and Ecosystems

It would be interesting to study economy in the same way we study natural ecosystems. This can help us understand economies better and provide us with insights into how to make economies more resilient and thriving.

Deserts into Food Forests

It would be interesting to see how the science of ecology can give us the knowledge and insights by which we can green the deserts of Egypt (Western Desert) and turn them into lush vegetation of food forests!

Saturday, November 8, 2014

Egypt Rapid Growth


The reason why we need to study ecosystems and systems in general is that science is based mainly on analysis, on dissecting things into smaller and smaller pieces then reconstructing larger things from their 'constituent' elements. This contrasts with the gestalt or holistic approach which states that the whole is greater than the sum of its parts.

The word complexity often arises from the analytically, dissecting, components based system of thinking and understanding. If we rather use a holistic approach the word complexity just disappears.


It is interesting that the ultimate way by which ecology and developmental biology measure the fitness level of an organism is by measuring its fertility; its ability to produce offspring that survive and for its offspring to produce offspring that survive. The interesting part is that that is the very way by which ingenious, local and lower class people usually measure their 'value'. A woman who produces a lot of offspring is valued more. A man who has a high rate of fertility can boast about that. It is interesting how the scientific concept of fitness in ecology is the very same principle which ingenious and less educated people use to value themselves.

Ecological Niche

Providing the conditions that satisfy the ecological niche for a specific organism are enough to maintaining such organism in good shape and making it thrive. This can be used to keep plants in great condition even at locations other than those where it originally grew and adapted provided the conditions of its ecological niche are provided.

Of course it might be costly in terms of energy and effort to provide such conditions artificially. This is exactly what happened in Biosphere 2. Such artificial provision of conditions can lead to catastrophes same as what happened to Biosphere 2.

Ecological Agriculture

One of my ultimate dreams would be to design an agricultural system fully based on ecological knowledge and ecological science. This is the same idea behind permaculture, yet I would love to take it to the next level. It would be highly interesting to study organisms, communities and ecosystems in the various climates present in Egypt and come up with ultimate ecological agriculture systems that can thrive in our Egyptian environment.

The science of ecology has also progressed considerably since the early days when Bill Mollison first co-founded permaculture. This presents a great opportunity now for taking a second look at permaculture and greatly enriching it given the new advancements in the science of ecology.


Temperature is an important condition for organisms and their survival. Temperature is arguably the most important condition in an ecological niche of an organism. It is interesting to note that temperature is a very important condition for, not only the survival, but the optimal comfort of humans.

Wooden bench in vegetation
Wooden bench amidst vegetation.

A lot of energy is exerted to artificially regulate the temperature for humans in their manmade built environments. Tackling this single condition, which greatly affects humans, can be a central point if we want to live more sustainable. Natural housing and green architecture may provide methods for providing an optimal temperature condition for humans without so much energy expenditure. This is my ultimate dream.

Egypt Rapid Growth

It is interesting to note the rate of growth and how it increases with temperature. This provides Egypt with a great advantage given its relatively high temperature. Plants can grown much faster in Egypt and thus lead to much higher rates of productivity in agriculture. On another note, using solar energy, particularly thermal solar energy, can be a great source of renewable energy for Egypt.

Rate of Development

The concept of development responding to temperature faster than growth is very interesting. The more temperature increases the faster the development rate and growth rate of an organism, yet the rate of development responds even more rapidly to temperature than the rate of growth. This is interesting because at higher temperatures organisms might have less growth (less size) yet be more developed than other similar organisms that were provided with lower temperatures! I wonder what applications and insights this could have when thinking of humans living at varying temperatures.

Microclimates Give Hope

The concept of microclimates gives hope. Humans can create their own microclimates in which they live regardless of the destruction present around them. Yes everything is ultimately connected and pollution at one place may affect another far away from it yet at the same time we must take microclimates into account and use it to our advantage while working on the bigger problem in parallel.

Temperature Twins

It would be interesting to think of temperature twins, organisms that have the same temperature requirements and thrive in similar temperatures. Would be interesting to examine those and see what they may have in common. Of course this should be done on organisms living in different geographic locations and preferably widely separated across large distances.


Awareness is the way forward for reducing the harmful manmade effects on the environment. Without such awareness it would be difficult to hold back the growing destruction to our ecosystems. Education and awareness programs are a central part to any ecological survival we would be seeking. Science and the findings of science should be a core component of such awareness and educational programs.

Note: It looks like in the early morning I get a lot more inspiration to write than when attempting to do so at night.

Friday, November 7, 2014

Computer Modeling

The interesting thing about computer models about the environment and ecology is that they can simulate complex conditions and more or less predict how things could look like in the future under different scenarios. For instance they can tell us what the temperature could be if global warming continues for the decades to come and what effect such rise in temperature could have on the environment and consequently on humans living on earth.

Thursday, November 6, 2014

Awareness Programs

Awareness Programs

When creating awareness programs about the environment, pollution, global warming and climate change, is is a good idea to start with a scientific background explaining the science behind global warming and showing charts and graphs. An explanation of greenhouse gases, how they affect the atmosphere and what made them increase should be provided.

Humidity Regulates Temperature

Water vapor absorbs the heat and reflected sun radiation. That's partly why in coastal cities and humid places temperature is regulated and heat is stored in the water vapor.

Wednesday, November 5, 2014

Reactions of Humans to Change

It is interesting to note that humans can migrate if conditions in their country or place of residence change and are no longer favorable to them. They might migrate to other places which have conditions similar to the conditions that used to exist at their homeland before such conditions changed. This would be mimicking nature for some organism do just that when conditions of the environment change. Other organisms might evolve to adapt to the new conditions, similarly humans may adapt to change. Finally, some organisms cannot tolerate the change and just become extinct. Similarly, humans who cannot adapt to change would just be unable to survive.

Tuesday, November 4, 2014

Smoking: A Reaction to Pollution

It is interesting to think of smoking as a reaction from humans to the pollution in the environment. A bus driver who drives a bus for several hours every day and suffers from the highly polluted air in addition to the stress of traffic in Cairo might find it necessary to smoke in order to 'balance' his body make it less sensitive to such high rate of pollution and stress.

Natural Disasters

In the Quran, there are many stories of peoples who live and prospered but then were taken by natural disasters (due to their sins). It is interesting that such natural disasters that 'wash' away those peoples are followed by more flourishing days. This pattern is similar to what happens in nature itself, regeneration after natural disasters.

Sunday, November 2, 2014

Plants and Wind

Plants and Wind

For plants it is not only freshwater availability, soils richness, sun and air but also physical forces such as wind that play a role in the existence and survival of plants. For instance a plant that faces strong winds might have its branches break or it might be blown away altogether.

Wind can also blow away humidity and thus rapidly making the water evaporate thus depriving the plant from enough water in case of arid lands. It is thus essential to grow wind breaks in the form of strong high trees that protect the rest of the crops grown in a farm from strong winds.

It is interesting to note that as plants adapt and acclimatize to conditions such as availability or shortage of water, soil nutrients and soil physical properties and the amount of light available they also adapt to other physical conditions such as the speed, strength and direction of wind. Too much wind can harm the plant, yet some wind can keep the branches dancing and happy helping it grow some resistance.


It is interesting to note the seaweed anchored to the rocks on the shores of Alexandria. It would be interesting to study them more and study their ecosystem.


Take photos of seaweeds on rocks on the shores of Alexandria.

Permaculture Edges

It is interesting to talk about the concept of boundaries. In permaculture, edges are considered to be the most productive. In ecology, a gradient of conditions shows up between the boundaries of two different states. The boundaries do not have to be only among zones of place but also among those of time. For instance, the time boundary between two seasons might show a spectrum of conditions and a consequent richness of organism populations.