Google Flight Search Expands into Europe

Getting the cheapest flights is often a concern, especially if you’re traveling internationally. Google Flight Search is a quick and helpful tool for locating the best prices for flyers, but when the service was launched, it was available only for US-based travelers. Google just recently expanded the service to cover more countries.

google flights europe

Read more @ Technabob

Spread of Disease-Carrying Mosquitoes in Europe Prompts Surveillance


Invasive mosquitoes carrying exotic diseases have made their entry into Europe. Diseases generally absent from Europe, like chikungunya and dengue fever have appeared around the continent. Europe’s entomologists and public-health experts have joined forces to try and defend the region.

Read more @ SciTechDaily

Italian Volcano Etna Has Its Third Eruption of 2012


The Italian volcano Etna, located in on the eastern coast of Sicily, has had its third paroxysm of 2012 on March 4th, its first since early February. The new eruption was a relatively short event, which was preceded by 18 days worth of smaller strombolian activity, which are relatively lower level volcanic eruptions.

Read more @ SciTechDaily

Boxwood Fungus Blight Invades North America After Taking Europe and New Zealand by Storm


A boxwood blight, caused by an aggressive fungus disease, has started to invade the North American continent, after it had spread throughout Europe and New Zealand. Last October, US authorities confirmed that the blight had jumped continents, and started infections in North Carolina and Connecticut.

Read more @ SciTechDaily

Ruminant Orthobunyavirus Takes Northern Europe By Surprise


A new virus has been found that causes fetal malformations and stillbirths in cattle, sheep and goats in northern Europe. Scientists don’t have a clue about the origin of the virus or why there is this sudden outbreak. Scientists want to share the virus and protocols to allow anyone interested to study the disease and develop tools and vaccines.

Read more @ SciTechDaily

Europe’s Web of Debt

NYT's infographic, via Good

Holy canoli, it’s looking bad in the EU for now, at least economically.


Wallander titles via Wikipedia
Wallander titles via Wikipedia

When I heard that Kenneth Branagh was playing Kurt Wallander, I was pretty surprised. I didn’t know much about the novels or the Swedish series, but I knew that it would be interesting.

I wasn’t disappointed.

The new series on BBC follows the investigations of workaholic detective Kurt Wallander, who’s had trouble living a personal life since his separation. His adult daughter Linda is the only reminder of a life that he once lived, other than the wedding ring that he can’t bear to take off.

The series is moody and eerie, filmed on location in Sweden, where the seasons and the day don’t follow what we know, except if you have lived in Scandinavia or Alaska.

Sweden is picturesquely beautiful, filled with green spaces and buildings. I found it very interesting on how the language was portrayed. There are Swedish newspapers and Swedish phones, which show a really keen attention to detail to make us believe that it is taking place in Sweden.

The accents are great as well. They are definitely Swedish, or Swedish-like. They are by no means British. I found the production values really great as well, though the cinematography could get to me at times.


Well, for some reason, the cinematographer worked on keeping only a part of the frame in focus during some shots. The surrounding shots were blurred in post-production, and it gets annoying after a while, since the blurring effects aren’t natural, they are inserted into the movies to add a feeling.

I think that they should have been more careful with that, but otherwise, there are some great shots. I can remember a scene taking place in the fog, or details about Wallander’s personal life that flesh out his character.

I really liked the opening theme by Aussie Emily Barker as well. It’s called Nostalgia. She’s from Bridgetown. You have to be careful because there is also an artist called Emily Baker from Brighton in the UK. It can be confusing because they both play similar music. Notably, this series used the new Red One digital camera for it’s filming.

Series 1 adapted the novels Sidetracked (’95), Firewall (’98) and One Step Behind (’97).

Anyway, I recommend it. I can’t wait for series 2.

Daily Financial Crisis Recap 17.10.08

The Dow ends the day 127.04 pts lower than yesterday at 8,852.22. A loss of 1.41%. The Dow is pretty volatile right now. It’s just the start. As soon as the recession sets in, things won’t be good.

The French bank La Caisse d’Épargne lost $807 million because of the derivatives market. They are currently in talks for a merger with La Banque Populaire. European banks are reticent to take money from their govts due to limits on their decision making and executive pay.

Fortunes built on debt are crumbling apart in Russia.

No one is listening to Bush. There are risks for the govt as it gets stakes in the banks. Nothing would be worse than if the markets continued to plunge.

* * * * *

Relevant Posts (check out the finance category for more)

Daily Financial Crisis Recap 12.10.08

Government leaders from the major European Union, by Lucas Dolega EPA
Government leaders from the major European Union, by Lucas Dolega EPA

An unsurprising move, after the something similar was announced in the US and the UK. Germany will inject up to $536 billion. The initial plan calls for $50 to $100 billion. Norway is going to spend $58 billion. France will pledge less than Germany. Britain is spending $255 billion and the US $700 billion.

Analysts are predicting a bleak holiday season for retailers. Are you planning on spending a lot of money?

The Fed approves Wells Fargo’s takeover bid of Wachovia. The bid was for $12.2 billion.

Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac were ordered to buy $40 billion a month of troubled mortgages.

Mitsubishi and Morgan Stanley are renegotiating their deal. MS was supposed to get an infusion of $9 billion from the Japanese giant. MS stock has hit $9.68. It was valued at $25.38 when they announce part of the deal. Mitsubishi still wants 21% of MS, but at a far lower price than last month.

Finance students are having a hard time finding the six figure jobs they thought were waiting for them.

Continue reading “Daily Financial Crisis Recap 12.10.08”