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Nicaragua Creates Innovative Agricultural Information System With Open Source

ScuttleMonkey posted more than 4 years ago | from the you-couldn't-pick-a-better-color-scheme? dept.

Software 78

johanneswilm writes "Nicaragua is the second-poorest country of the Americas. It is now also the Latin American country with the most capable web-based information system for agriculture, thanks to open source software. ALBAstryde itself is open source, and it is based on Django and jQuery. It allows the user to play with the data, and its reach is further extended by a net of radio stations which are broadcasting the numbers to remote peasants, who thereby, for the first time ever, get up to date data on prices and general production levels in the country. The implementation for the ministry of agriculture of Nicaragua already contains live data."

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hmmm. (2, Funny)

gandhi_2 (1108023) | more than 4 years ago | (#30092704)

$('plant .coca').harvest('fast');

Re:hmmm. (3, Informative)

Abreu (173023) | more than 4 years ago | (#30092804)

Nicaragua's climate is not best suited for coca... Pot would probably be best

Re:hmmm. (1)

KingAlanI (1270538) | more than 4 years ago | (#30094846)

I don't know much about drugs or agriculture, but I always laugh when posts like this are given serious positive mods.

Re:hmmm. (1)

mtaht (603670) | more than 4 years ago | (#30098502)

The Pot in Nicaragua is terrible. Maybe open source can help?!

Obligatory... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#30092714)

I, for one, welcome our agricultural monitoring overlords?

Re:Obligatory... (1)

Abreu (173023) | more than 4 years ago | (#30092832)

Also obligatory:

"See?! Only dirty commies use Open Source software!"

Re:Obligatory... (1, Flamebait)

spun (1352) | more than 4 years ago | (#30093382)

I wonder, was Project Cybersyn [wikipedia.org] open source? Seems that if you are the elected leader of a Central or South American country, you'd better not do anything Socialist that, you know, might actually work better than the free market, or we will kill you and install a brutal military dictator who will slaughter your people for generations to come.

Re:Obligatory... (-1, Troll)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#30093918)

Seems that if you are the elected leader of a Central or South American country, you'd better not do anything Socialist that, you know, might actually work better than the free market, or we will kill you and install a brutal military dictator who will slaughter your people for generations to come.

Ahh yes, another whiney commie demoncrat terrorist claiming to know about capitalism when you know absolutely nothing about it other than what your comrades have parroted. Let's see here, Socilist/communist nations include the USSR, China, North Korea, Cuba, Vietnam, etc. All of which support you demoncrats. The only thing you demoncrats apparently do beyond that is committ treason by giving aid and comfort to your American-hating friends, the terrorists.

Re:Obligatory... (1, Insightful)

mi (197448) | more than 4 years ago | (#30094394)

Seems that if you are the elected leader of a Central or South American country, you'd better not do anything Socialist

Unless the country is Honduras, in which case, we'll defend you against your own country's Congress and Supreme Court...

we will kill you and install a brutal military dictator who will slaughter your people for generations to come.

Citations needed

Re:Obligatory... (3, Informative)

hullabalucination (886901) | more than 4 years ago | (#30094530)

we will kill you and install a brutal military dictator who will slaughter your people for generations to come.

Citations needed

Here you go:

http://www.freerepublic.com/focus/news/867178/posts [freerepublic.com]

Re:Obligatory... (1)

yuri82 (236251) | more than 4 years ago | (#30096684)

Nicaragua is just one of a few dozen countries that were destroyed by the "freedom from the soviets" imperialist ideals...

Re:Obligatory... (1)

mi (197448) | more than 4 years ago | (#30117240)

That link has information about America's initial support for Saddam Hussein. Although that man, certainly, does qualify as a butcher of generations, the US did not install him — we merely supported him [wikipedia.org] once he gained power on his own...

Your example thus does not qualify... Want to try again? Remember, you have to find an example of America killing a Socialist leader and installing in his place "a brutal military dictator who will slaughter his people for generations to come."

Re:Obligatory... (1)

spun (1352) | more than 4 years ago | (#30118842)

I was referring to the US deposing Allende in Chile. However, there are many, many other cases of extreme US interventionism. Here's a partial list for you to suck on:

http://www2.truman.edu/~marc/resources/interventions.html [truman.edu]

Here's another, because I know how much you love having the facts regarding US interventionism shoved in your face:

http://www.zompist.com/latam.html [zompist.com]

Here's a general list of interventions, not Latin America specific:

http://academic.evergreen.edu/g/grossmaz/interventions.html [evergreen.edu]

We are not the good guys. We are not the global police. We are a nation of brutal, arrogant, power hungry thugs, destroying anything that displeases us. You want to know why socialism fails? US. We do it. We infiltrate, kill, lie, steal, rape, and do whatever we have to to "protect" our interests, which really means protecting the interests of rich, owning class Americans, not the peons.

The thing is, we could be the shining beacon of freedom and democracy we pretend to be if it weren't for people like you sticking your fingers in your ears and shouting "LALALALA I CAN'T HEAR YOU" every time someone constructively criticizes the US.

Re:Obligatory... (1)

mi (197448) | more than 4 years ago | (#30133026)

However, there are many, many other cases of extreme US interventionism.

None of such cases in recent memory have installed a "brutal military dictator," who "slaughtered" his countrymen for generations. None...

You want to know why socialism fails? US. We do it. We infiltrate, kill, lie, steal, rape ...

Do you have a list of such kills, lies, thefts, and rapes, that the US has perpetrated in Bulgaria, Chechoslovakia, Estonia, Ukraine, Poland, Kazahstan, North Korea, Zimbabwe, Cambodia? Because Socialism there failed even more spectacularly, than in Nicaragua... Or, perhaps, Stalin and Pol Pot were well-hidden CIA-operatives?

We are a nation of brutal, arrogant, power hungry thugs [emphasis mine -mi], destroying anything that displeases us. [...] someone constructively criticizes the US.

Perfect! What a great example of constructive criticism! Thank you, thank you... I don't suppose, I even need to ask: "Why do you hate America?" You've already gaven me the answer...

Re:Obligatory... (1)

spun (1352) | more than 4 years ago | (#30135488)

I don't hate America. I love America. However, our definitions of 'love' may be different. Your version seems to be the love of an abused spouse who will defend their abusive mate whatever the cost. I see love more as an action than a feeling.

Funny, you have not mentioned a country that actually had socialism. The ones you mention had tyrannies. Not socialism, not communism: tyranny.

Read up on what the CIA did to Chile and Allende. How we supported Saddam Hussein. How we supported Suharto. How we stuck our fingers into dozens of Central and South American countries democratically elected governments. Remember Iran Contra? Remember Ferdinand Markos? Manuel Noriega? Alfredo Stroessner? Remember how invaded the Dominican Republic because they elected a socialist? No, of course you don't.

Re:Obligatory... (1)

mi (197448) | more than 4 years ago | (#30145514)

I don't hate America. I love America.

Sorry, but I find it unbelievable for a person to love a country, which he characterizes as a nation of brutal, arrogant, power hungry thugs. There are no ifs-and-buts about this... Either you admit to an earlier gross exaggeration, or — after a moment of honest clarity earlier — you are now (again) being insincere about your true convictions to avoid an outright dismissal as a "fringe".

Your version seems to be the love of an abused spouse who will defend their abusive mate whatever the cost.

So, you think, I was abused by America... What do you know about me, that I don't? Or is it your opinion, that everyone is being abused by this country — and some, like yourself, recognize it, while others still don't?

Read up on what the CIA did to Chile and Allende. How we supported Saddam Hussein. How we supported Suharto. How we stuck our fingers into dozens of Central and South American countries democratically elected governments. Remember Iran Contra? Remember Ferdinand Markos? Manuel Noriega? Alfredo Stroessner? Remember how invaded the Dominican Republic because they elected a socialist? No, of course you don't.

I may be too young to remember it, but I do applaud those past efforts of America to stop the inevitable tyranny and misery of Socialism in its tracks, wherever it tried to rear its ugly head or raise it bloody flag. Even he failed to properly follow through, Kennedy's words express this sentiment best:

"Let every nation know, whether it wishes us well or ill, that we shall pay any price, bear any burden, meet any hardship, support any friend, oppose any foe to assure the survival and success of liberty." John Fitzgerald Kennedy

That said, to bring you back to the original contention, I'm yet to see an acceptable example, where the US installed a military dictator, who'd slaughter his countrymen for generations. It simply has not happened, and the two nominations presented so far — Hussein and Pinochet — don't qualify for different reasons. Although Hussein was, indeed, a bloody slaughterer, we didn't install him. And Pinochet — even if we did install him — was not a slaughterer at all, but a blessing for his country, which became South America's top economy under his rule; moreover, considering, that he stepped down on his own, he was hardly even a dictator (except in an Ancient Roman sense of the word [wikipedia.org] )...

As already mentioned, I have no doubt, you quite an admiration for Che Guevara and own clothing with his famous portrait — and yet he was part of a still existing dictatorship far worse, than anything America helped create. Talk about abusive mates!

The ones you mention had tyrannies. Not socialism, not communism: tyranny.

Well, well... Is not it convenient, when you can reclassify things at your whim... I guess, you liked the freedom-fighter Mugabe until he turned into a dictator too... And Chavez may already have lost your favor by becoming a tyrant — or, maybe, not yet... No, I'm not going to allow you to weasel away from this. The countries I listed all had nationalized (state-owned) means of production and capital, which, by very definition [princeton.edu] , means, they were/are Socialist.

Face it... Capitalism has brought hitherto unknown riches and comforts even to the least successful of its participants. Socialism, at best, allows countries to survive economically (although those still leave some parts of the economy private), but unable to even defend themselves. There simply aren't enough rapists and murderers in the CIA, to explain Socialism's mediocrity and outright failures...

Re:Obligatory... (1)

spun (1352) | more than 4 years ago | (#30145832)

You believe that it is okay to depose democratically elected leaders in other countries if they happen to be socialist?

That's all I need to know about you. You are downright evil. I've been trying to argue with you, but it is obvious that you are simply beyond reach.

Good day.

Re:Obligatory... (1)

mi (197448) | more than 4 years ago | (#30148706)

You believe that it is okay to depose democratically elected leaders in other countries if they happen to be socialist?

That's a change of subject on your part... All I want to point out is that — despite several requests — no citation of the US installing a dictator, who then slaughtered his subjects for generations was ever put forward.

You are downright evil.

Oh, right. An ad-hominem... Not surprising at all — all symptoms are in place.

Re:Obligatory... (1)

spun (1352) | more than 4 years ago | (#30148984)

Let me remind you of what you said: "I may be too young to remember it, but I do applaud those past efforts of America to stop the inevitable tyranny and misery of Socialism in its tracks, wherever it tried to rear its ugly head or raise it bloody flag."

In this statement, you applaud the US intervention in other countries democratically elected representatives, and our support of coups and installation of military strongmen (who do you think replaces the socialists we kill?) We have killed other country's elected leaders for the crime of being socialist, and you applaud that.

I've presented plenty of evidence of us installing dictators, who then slaughtered their subjects. Read the links I gave. The evidence is clear.

Re:Obligatory... (1)

mi (197448) | more than 4 years ago | (#30149148)

In this statement, you applaud [...]

My persona — with its flaws, etc. is a subject distinct from the topic. Let's not get distracted.

I've presented plenty of evidence of us installing dictators, who then slaughtered their subjects.

No, actually, you haven't. Don't make a big list — name just one "military dictator, who slaughtered his subjects for generations to come."

Sixty Thousand Dead under Operation Condor (1)

spun (1352) | more than 4 years ago | (#30149486)

The fact that you applaud the US killing foreign heads of state for the 'crime' of being socialist is NOT distinct from the topic. It is entirely germane, and horrifying, so much so that it completely discredits anything else you have to say.

Just one? I already have. The US backed coup in Chile removed democratically elected president Salvador Allende and replaced him with Augusto Pinochet [wikipedia.org] , a brutal monster who, as I said, slaughtered his people for generations to come. You may cheer that slaughter, but slaughter it was. [wikipedia.org]

I can't believe you haven't given up by now. I mean, we both know I've handed you your ass over and over again in this debate. Your only defense so far has been a childish, "Nuh uh! Is not!" sort of vapid disagreement with the well documented facts I've cited.

Hopefully, these delicious truths burns painfully in the pit of your stomach as you contemplate the utter lie your entire life is based on.

Re:Sixty Thousand Dead under Operation Condor (1)

mi (197448) | more than 4 years ago | (#30152506)

Augusto Pinochet, a brutal monster who, as I said, slaughtered his people for generations to come

"Operation Condor" was not purely Chilean — read your own link [wikipedia.org] . Throwing a number like 60K without any proof is not convincing, and even if they were 60000, most of them wouldn't have been Chileans simply because it was a far smaller country, than the other participants of the operation (Brazil alone had more people, than all the others combined [google.com] , and Argentina had roughly twice the population of Chile.)

Nope, Augusto Pinochet has "slaughtered" under 3200 people [wikipedia.org] — most of them Marxists, who deserved a rather terrible fate simply for dabbling in the most murderous ideology known so far. They do not qualify for "generations" at all... Indeed, Chile's population continued to grow smoothly [google.com] throughout the 20th century...

Even if Allende remained merely a naive kind of Socialist, far more of his countrymen would've died simply from the inevitable economic failures. And if he turned into (or were succeeded by) something like Castro or Che Guevara [therealcuba.com] , then things would've been even worse. If you begrudge Pinochet the 3000 dead Marxists, what am I to make of your admiration for Che (which you don't deny), who is responsible for thousands of executions (in a smaller country) — and even killed several dozens personally?

Pinochet is a famous bogey man of Illiberals like yourself, but the facts are against you. As far as dictators go, Pinochet was rather benevolent. He helped his country avoid the hell of Socialism (which, having experienced it on myself, I wouldn't wish upon many), and stepped down on his own, leaving his country in a very good shape. Whatever role the US played in these events, Chileans have to thank us for it.

Pinochet was no slaughterer, and your example is thus rejected (again). I must note smugly, that, indeed, no suitable examples exist — the US, in its Cold War fights with the USSR, had more scruples, than our foe. Maybe, it was simply because our cause was just...

I've handed you your ass over and over again in this debate

Don't kid yourself. Your "arguments" are only good to rally those, who already agree with you. They aren't convincing at all... (And stop thinking about my ass. Thank you.)

Re:Sixty Thousand Dead under Operation Condor (1)

spun (1352) | more than 4 years ago | (#30156616)

Nobody deserves to be slaughtered for their ideology. If they actually do something wrong, they deserve a trial. The fact that you defend a mass murderer makes you, well, evil. As I said before.

Re:Sixty Thousand Dead under Operation Condor (1)

mi (197448) | more than 4 years ago | (#30157754)

Nobody deserves to be slaughtered for their ideology. If they actually do something wrong, they deserve a trial.

Really? A trial? Not according to your hero:

send men to the firing squad, judicial proof is unnecessary. These procedures are an archaic bourgeois detail. This is a revolution! And a revolutionary must become a cold killing machine motivated by pure hate. Che Guevara

The fact that you defend a mass murderer makes you

All I was and continue saying, is that Pinochet does not qualify for "slaughterer of generations". That is, admittedly, a subjective standard, so let's make it more objective: to qualify, the US-installed dictator has to be more murderous, than Castro/Guevara, whom you admire.

Either name one like that (and you don't deny, that Pinochet does not qualify), or admit, that the US has not, in fact, ever installed a dictator like that.

Re:Sixty Thousand Dead under Operation Condor (1)

spun (1352) | more than 4 years ago | (#30158298)

Che Guevara is not my hero. Stalin is not my hero. Lenin is not my hero. They were murderers like the man you defend.

Pinochet does qualify. I set the qualifications, not you. I said it, and Pinochet fits what I said. I never said "more murderous than Castro/Guevara." And neither did you, until now, when you realized how badly you've lost and will try anything, no matter how transparent, to keep from having to admit you've lost.

In any case, there are dozens more examples. In terms of people killed, Indonesia's Suharto massacred hundreds of thousands of people, and of course, we helped him do it. [wikipedia.org]

Face it. I've gotten you to admit you want to murder all socialists, without a trial. I've proven my point, the US installs and supports murderers. Even if Pinochet killed only several thousand, that makes him a mass murderer, and fits my original statement: "we will kill you and install a brutal military dictator who will slaughter your people for generations to come."

Pinochet was a brutal military dictator who slaughtered his people for generations. You simply can't argue against that without changing what I said.

You've lost. Again.

You can't win against me. I know more than you, I cite my sources, and I have the moral high ground.

It's not even a contest.

Re:Sixty Thousand Dead under Operation Condor (1)

mi (197448) | more than 4 years ago | (#30161596)

Pinochet does qualify. I set the qualifications, not you.

Not quite. Your original description [slashdot.org] of the dictator, that the US would, supposedly, install instead of the poor benevolent Socialists read: "a brutal military dictator who will slaughter your people for generations to come."

Now, "slaughter" is an inflammatory term, which you used for its rhetorical impact, not precision. And I caught you there, because the term does have a definition [princeton.edu] : the savage and excessive killing of many people. Perhaps, in your ignorance, you really did think, the entire 60000 victims of "Operation Condor" were on Pinochet's conscience, but, in fact, the most that it was possible to accuse him of was about 3000 total.

Even if all of them were innocent (their killing thus "excessive") and killed "savagely", their total number would not qualify for "generations", in any reasonable reading of the word — for example, the 9/11 hijackers killed about the same number of people (all innocent, actually), but nobody would say, they killed "for generations". This alone disqualifies Pinochet — his general benevolence, the remarkable achievements of his country under his rule, and his voluntary stepping down are just "gravy on top".

My advice to you for next time:

  1. Temper your rhetoric...
  2. Catch-up on facts, such as:
    • Socialist countries in history,
    • victims of dictators per creed
  3. Figure out your love-hate relationship with your country: one you call "a nation of brutal, arrogant, power hungry thugs," but claim to love anyway.

I'm tired of this thread.

Re:Sixty Thousand Dead under Operation Condor (2, Informative)

spun (1352) | more than 4 years ago | (#30162006)

Oh, since Pinochet only murdered around 3000 people, that doesn't count as slaughter? And the fact that these murders went on for decades somehow doesn't count as generations?

Your tired of this thread because I've handed you your ass on a platter.

If you ever care to try your hand at debating me again, I have posts I can link back to to show what kind of a person you are. Mi the Murderer, that's what we'll call you.

Re:Obligatory... (1)

Abreu (173023) | more than 4 years ago | (#30102516)

A bunch of fascists in the Honduran Congress, Courts and Military do not legitimize the fact that they staged a coup against the democratically elected president.

EVERYBODY in the international community, has recognized this coup for what it is, and has condemned it in the most serious way (except the US).

Citations needed

There are many examples, this is only one of them:
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Project_FUBELT [wikipedia.org]

Re:Obligatory... (1)

ErikZ (55491) | more than 4 years ago | (#30104438)

You're claiming that the Honduran Congress, and the Honduran Courts, AND the Honduran Military are all wrong?
Assuming that they have 4 branches of Government, that's 3 out of 4.

Even if the old President managed to stay in power, what could he possibly do when the rest of the government is arrayed against him?

Re:Obligatory... (1)

mi (197448) | more than 4 years ago | (#30110726)

A bunch of fascists in the Honduran Congress, Courts and Military do not legitimize the fact that they staged a coup

Yeah, call them names... The actual fact is, they followed their country's Constitution to the letter [house.gov] . Except for the bit, where they threw the offender out of the country, instead of locking him up and putting him on trial. (I can't remember a "fascist" showing a weakness like that, BTW...)

There are many examples [of the US installing brutal military dictators, who slaughter their subjects for generations to come], this is only one of them: [Project FUBELT]

Pinochet — the "brutal military dictator" that the US helped get to power in place of a Socialist Allende — was, most certainly, not a slaughterer. His entire count of victims [wikipedia.org] is measured in under 3000 people, most of whom really were Communists and deserved the worst fate possible. Allende's economic mismanagement is, no doubt, responsible for far more suffering. Seriously, Castro and Ch Guevarra are responsible for far more blood, but I'm sure, you own at least one T-shirt with the latter's picture.

Oh, and Pinochet stepped down volunterely — leaving Chile, until him a basket case [wikipedia.org] — South America's strongest economy (by far). If that is, who you'd accuse of "slaughtering for generations", I wonder, what kind of case you are building against the Castro brothers...

North America Ag systems (3, Interesting)

inKubus (199753) | more than 4 years ago | (#30092798)

It would be an interesting exercise to check out the U.S. systems and review how they could be improved. Especially the market systems. The USDA does a lot of monitoring of various local markets for everything from cattle to hay to everything in between. Conditions at all these markets contribute to the commodities price at the main trading markets in Chicago. If you look at the USDA data though, it's all still old mainframe stuff with tab delimited all caps formatting. The data is all fairly disjointed and it's not possible right now to mine the data unless you want to collect and translate it all into your own data warehouse. These market reports often contain interesting information about why the price is being affected, such as weather conditions, etc. I think the government should do a better job of making this data available to the public. You know the big trading houses have negotiated direct feeds to this data, and I think that gives them unfair advantage in determining market pricing.

Re:North America Ag systems (1)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#30092878)

You know the big trading houses have negotiated direct feeds to this data, and I think that gives them unfair advantage in determining market pricing.

Everything else you said aside, big trading houses determine market pricing because they are big.
It really is that simple.

Re:North America Ag systems (3, Interesting)

inKubus (199753) | more than 4 years ago | (#30093010)

Everyone determines their own market price, and either you buy or you don't. You are right, big houses do make the largest contribution to the actual pricing, but everyone makes that decision on their own. The small players (consumers), although individually insignificant, together make a huge contribution to the market price. But that usually isn't based on information about the futures market but rather their current economic state. Apples have a price at the grocery store, and what they now cost is what they cost. You have to make the decision at the time you're in the store whether to buy or not. But (and especially for food) this is not a good free market. Consumers should be able to plan when they buy the apples so they will . If you have access to the market information for the next month's apples, and you see that you can get them for half what you could get them for now, you could defer your purchase (if you can) and get more for less. A true free market depends on ALL participants having full access to all the information in the market. Instead, it's largely decided by traders, which means we are subjected to these massive bubbles which are all making a few people a lot of money and its us who suffer. Now, there are fringe benefits to this. In general it smooths out pricing, because the public will constantly over pay which enables higher inventories and that acts as an insurance policy when prices rise (more supply is then dumped). That's fine, I don't care about the public, it's the domination of the market information by a few big guys when there are a lot of people who are interested in investing in this market.

Re:North America Ag systems (2, Funny)

BJ_Covert_Action (1499847) | more than 4 years ago | (#30092950)

...of various local markets for everything from cattle to hay to everything in between....

I didn't realize there was a market for bovine stomachs and intestines....then again I don't really eat at McDonald's....

Re:North America Ag systems (1)

pfleming (683342) | more than 4 years ago | (#30093702)

You don't shop at Asian markets then. They sell everything in those places. Cow and pig blood, intestines and even pig uterus.

Re:North America Ag systems (2, Informative)

TheLink (130905) | more than 4 years ago | (#30095594)

Supermarkets where I am actually sell stuff like liver and gizzards just the way they sell chicken wings, fillets etc.

I think that's why in my country they often have to import stuff to make sausages, nuggets or patties. The fresh "misc" meat has enough value and actually gets sold in significant quantities.

Whereas in more "squeamish" countries, they have to disguise the stuff, or convert them to pet food.

If you eat more of an animal without having to disguise it, it means less wastage and better efficiency. A single animal can feed more people, and there's less spent on hiding the "unsightly" bits.

Re:North America Ag systems (1)

budgenator (254554) | more than 4 years ago | (#30098052)

Yumm, Haggis [wikipedia.org] , you haven't lived until you've eaten haggis!

Re:North America Ag systems (1)

Abreu (173023) | more than 4 years ago | (#30102566)

You can fry previously boiled bovine or sheep intestines and eat them in tacos... pretty tasty but fattening

Re:North America Ag systems (0, Troll)

citizenr (871508) | more than 4 years ago | (#30095330)

It would be an interesting exercise to check out the U.S. systems and review how they could be improved.

Burn down all Fast Food chains, that should do it.

Should be vry interestng to see how this works out (5, Insightful)

KarmaOverDogma (681451) | more than 4 years ago | (#30092810)

If small time farmers can prosper using this system in one of the poorer country in Latin America, this could bode very well for fair-trade types of practices and businesses, as well as micro-lenders, all over the world.

Good luck, amigos!

Re:Should be vry interestng to see how this works (1)

thetagger (1057066) | more than 4 years ago | (#30093398)

Sure, they will put all this effort in making their agriculture more efficient, only to have their crops overtaxed in the US and Europe because of pressure from their richest farmers.

Good Job (5, Funny)

royallthefourth (1564389) | more than 4 years ago | (#30092852)

So Nicaragua comes out and does something really interesting and in response we subject their 400 mhz K6-2 server to the Slashdot Effect. Whose idea was this? Henry Kissinger?

Re:Good Job (4, Funny)

jedidiah (1196) | more than 4 years ago | (#30093000)

Geeks are a scary lot when they hate you.

They're even a scarier lot when they LOVE you.

So... (4, Funny)

fuzzyfuzzyfungus (1223518) | more than 4 years ago | (#30092870)

How long before Microsoft announces "Microsoft Hinterland ShareCrop Server 2010" to compete?

That's obvious (1)

rumith (983060) | more than 4 years ago | (#30092988)

They're hiding something. Since the Japanese ministry of agriculture is not responsible for Gundam, it must be some other ministry of agriculture responsible for it. And this is but one sinister sign of which one exactly it might be...

Re:That's obvious (1)

Qu4Z (1402097) | more than 4 years ago | (#30093640)

Actually, Gundams are programmed in Visual Basic... (At least, they were in Gundam Wing, IIRC)

They wouldn't be so poor... (1, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#30093026)

...if they didn't intermittently keep electing the communist Sandinistas to wreck and loot their country.

Yay communists (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#30093112)

Yay communists think that they're so special! Only they buy the Microsoft propaganda that open source software is communism. Useful idiots.

Vaporware (3, Insightful)

mi (197448) | more than 4 years ago | (#30093120)

It is now also the Latin American country with the most capable web-based information system for agriculture [...] already contains live data.

Shut up and report back, when agricultural output in the country increases by, at least, 50%...

For benchmark, this source [nationsencyclopedia.com] reports: During 1990-2000 the agricultural output grew by a yearly average of 5.7%. In 2001, the agricultural trade surplus was $85.2 million. But that was when the Sandinistas were out of power [wikipedia.org] . They are ruling the country again since 2006, when Daniel Ortega returned to the presidency with 37.99% of the vote.

In 2007 they were afraid of a famine [highbeam.com] blaming a hurricane. Unless their policies [wikipedia.org] are drastically different now, they aren't going to achieve much good, even if they use Linux for their command-and-control implementation of economy — for the Greater Good (TM).

Re:Vaporware (3, Funny)

hyades1 (1149581) | more than 4 years ago | (#30093406)

Yeah, those hurricanes never do as much damage as those Third World socialist creeps try to claim (cough) Katrina (cough). If they weren't socialists, there wouldn't be a problem.

Re:Vaporware (2, Interesting)

mi (197448) | more than 4 years ago | (#30093818)

Yeah, those hurricanes never do as much damage as those Third World socialist creeps try to claim (cough) Katrina (cough).

There was no famine in New Orleans. There was a major break down in law and order and other failures of the local government. A Socialist needn't be from "Third World" to be a disaster — the US is hit by hurricanes regularly, but you don't get reports about shots fired at rescue helicopters [bbc.co.uk] from low income housing... You can blame Bush all you want, but I think, the mismanagement of the city (and the entire State of Louisiana) by the Democratic party, which ruled there exclusively ever since the Whigs have left the political scene, is too blame... It was a peculiar, but unpleasant city of high crime and racism long before Katrina struck.

If they weren't socialists, there wouldn't be a problem.

Yep, that's true... I invite you to compare, yet again, Katrina striking a Socialist-ruled New Orleans and all other hurricanes striking normal parts of the US. (Heck — there was no famine, nor threat thereof, in Thailand after tsunami either!) I also invite you to compare the riots in a Democratic-(mis)managed Seattle [wikipedia.org] , vs. absence of anything like in the Republican-controlled New York during a Republican Convention of 2004. Or, the massive looting in the Democratic-(mis)managed New York during the power blackout of 1977 [wikipedia.org] vs. the calm of the Republican-managed New York during the power blackout of 2003 [wikipedia.org] .

I don't think, you expected this many facts in response to your snide missile... It is good for you, though.

Re:Vaporware (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#30093956)

Wow. You're a very good cherry picking bot.

Re:Vaporware (4, Informative)

DavidShor (928926) | more than 4 years ago | (#30096464)

With all due respect, I invite you to compare to stop cherry-picking and do an actual comparison of the living standards in states run by democrats vs by republicans. See admittedly partisan http://www.vaughns-1-pagers.com/politics/red-blue-states-summary.htm [vaughns-1-pagers.com] , http://blog.lib.umn.edu/cspg/smartpolitics/2009/09/red_states_have_higher_crime_r.php [umn.edu] , and FuckTheSouth.com .

To sum up the data: Per Capita Income in "Blue" states is 20% higher then in Red States and Graduation rates are 5.4% higher. Violent and Property crime are 11.1% and 10.1% higher respectively in states controlled by Republican Legislatures. In terms of taxation, "Blue" States overwhelmingly pay far more in taxes then they receive in federal outlays, with the money going to "Red" states. Interestingly, under pretty much every measure of administrative efficiency, Democratic governments do better then Republican ones, by a sizeable margin.

Brush it off as the price of hedonist sin? 9 out of 10 of the states with the lowest divorce rates are blue states, while all 10 out of 10 of the top 10 states are red states. All of the top 16 states with the highest abortion rates voted for Bush, while 9 out of 10 of the states with the lowest rates voted for Kerry.

Unlike you, I'm not going to be a dick and assume Correlation-->Causation, but for what it's worth, the evidence is on my side, not yours.

Other nitpicks:

1) When my home state, Florida, got hit by Hurricanes in 2004, crop yields fell by 40%. But unlike Nicaragua, we were part of a large country, most of which was not hit by a Hurricane, that was able to carry us through for our eating needs. Nicaragua meanwhile, is roughly the size of Miami-Dade county. When it gets hit by a hurricane, the entire country gets hit. And so without importing food from elsewhere, famine is inevitable. It's a little inexplicable that this didn't occur to you in your analysis.

2) "There was no famine in New Orleans. There was a major break down in law and order and other failures of the local government."

Don't rewrite history. I remember when it took days and days for the government to get *anybody* to the Superdrome as 20,000 people were in dire need of food and water. We spend more on our military then literally every other country combined, but we couldn't air drop food and water onto a large stationary target on our territory? (And don't mention security. Our National Guard manages to run humanitarian efforts in Fallujah under heavy weapon fire). It was a terrible display of incompetence, and voters saw it too, with the disaster triggering a huge structural decrease in Bush's approval ratings.

3) Unless the pre-Katrina government of New Orleans engaged in policies that nationalized the means of production, then calling them "Socialist" makes you look like a dumbass.

Re:Vaporware (1)

hyades1 (1149581) | more than 4 years ago | (#30101154)

Thanks for picking up the ball and running with it, my friend. I was just reading the guy's response, and my mouth was hanging open from the assumptions he was making and the cherry-picked situations he was trying to mis-apply. I could maybe add a couple of other angles (such as US economic and diplomatic measures routinely used to make things harder for South American "socialist" countries), but why guild the lily? Your response was about as comprehensive as it gets.

Cheers!

Re:Vaporware (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#30107744)

Nicragua may have the population of Miami Dade, but it is geographically slightly larger than all of Florida in land area. 55,000 sq miles vs 57,000 or so as I recall.

Re:Vaporware (1)

mi (197448) | more than 4 years ago | (#30110950)

To sum up the data: Per Capita Income in "Blue" states is 20% higher then in Red States and Graduation rates are 5.4% higher.

Easily attributable to the Democratic politicans being better at siphoning the federal pork.

In terms of taxation, "Blue" States overwhelmingly pay far more in taxes then they receive in federal outlays

Per person? Anyway, I'm not going to bother with statistics, which even you admit to be partisan. There are many ways to misrepresent data like that — by, for example, excluding certain monies from "federal outlays", or not counting certain kinds of crimes, etc. If you play with data enough, you can come to rather dire conclusions just about anything you (pre)set your mind to.

Also, in many cases, a Democratic government can enjoy the situation left over by the previous Republican administration. And where such is not available — such as New Orleans or New York until Giulliani, the Democrats are demonstrably a disaster.

When my home state, Florida, got hit by Hurricanes in 2004, crop yields fell by 40%. But unlike Nicaragua, we were part of a large country, most of which was not hit by a Hurricane, that was able to carry us through for our eating needs.

Even a 60% crop wouldn't cause a famine in Florida... As for your being part of a large country, that's irrelevant, because you didn't get food as charity from the government — you paid for (most) it, with industrious, profit-driven capitalists in a hurry to deliver supplies in exchange for money. If Nicaragua had any of that (instead of living harvest-to-harvest) — they would've been able to absorb an occasional hurricane too.

Don't rewrite history. I remember when it took days and days for the government to get *anybody* to the Superdrome as 20,000 people were in dire need of food and water.

Yes, and how and why the heck did they all end up in that structure in the first place? Could that have been the fault of the local government? The Federal government did turn out unprepared for such a situation, no doubt (nor should it even be preparing for that, in my opinion, but that's separate). But to cause such a problem requires an incompetent local government.

It was a terrible display of incompetence, and voters saw it too, with the disaster triggering a huge structural decrease in Bush's approval ratings.

Voters saw, what the anti-Bush Tv and newspapers have shown them. That part of your argument is a non-starter, really... If they had drilled as much on the hundreds of the school buses [wizbangblog.com] , that were never used to take people out and instead allowed to flood (millions of dollars of gratuituos losses in itself), perhaps, the voter's perception would've been different.

Unless the pre-Katrina government of New Orleans engaged in policies that nationalized the means of production, then calling them "Socialist" makes you look like a dumbass.

Yes, you are right — a mayor can't nationalize anything, that kind of task would require a community organizer. I should've used the word "Democrat" — that's the only thing known about New Orleans mayor. Oh, and that he is racist [cnn.com] and incompetent... In my defense, the word "Socialist" in my post was left over from the person I was responding to.

Re:Vaporware (1)

DavidShor (928926) | more than 4 years ago | (#30113278)

Easily attributable to the Democratic politicans being better at siphoning the federal pork.

1) Using http://www.cagw.org/site/PageServer?pagename=reports_pigbook2008porkpercap [cagw.org] as a source, an anti-spending organisation that most would consider right-wing as a source, some quick math (email me and I'd be glad to send you, otherwise, import it into excel...): The average pork per capita is $46.30 in states won by Obama, and $88 in states won by McCain. That's a 90% difference.

2) Of course, pork spending is a miniscule portion of the federal budget. Let's look at overall federal spending: The Tax Foundation, another anti-tax group, has data at http://www.taxfoundation.org/research/show/266.html [taxfoundation.org] . Plugging this into excel and comparing with election08 data (Feel free to email me asking for the data if you don't trust me), the average Blue state gets $0.96 in spending for every dollar it pays in taxes. The average Red state receives $1.40 in spending for every dollar in taxes it pays.

These figures include essentially all types of federal spending: Defence, Welfare, Medicaid, etc. You can read more about the methodology at http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Federal_spending_and_taxation_across_states [wikipedia.org] .

If anything, it seems like it's the Republican politicians are "better at siphoning the federal pork." !

Per person?

Per person, things are pretty much the same. Weighing population, you get that Blue states receive 96 cents in spending for every dollar they pay in taxes, while Red states receive $1.27 in spending for every dollar they pay in taxes.

enough, you can come to rather dire conclusions just about anything you (pre)set your mind to.

Not in this case. Under pretty much every conceivable metric, Blue states perform better then Red States. This is, at heart, because Blue states have lots of cities, while Red states tend to be rural. Cities are much richer then rural areas, and money tends to fix social and economic problems. There's a good argument to be made that this has nothing to do with governance, but the data is what it is.

As for your claim that Democrats benefit from having republican predecessors: There is a good deal of evidence that vote margins can be very accurately predicted on the basis of economic performance (See the "Bread and Peace" model published by Hibbs(2005)). If Democrats gain power from Republicans, this implies that the Republicans must have done very badly. Since there are more Democrats then Republicans at every level of government right now, this creates a strong theoretical reason to believe that Republicans do not perform better then Democrats. Because of this strong theoretical basis, the burden of proof is on you to prove otherwise, preferably with a lot of data.

"Even a 60% crop wouldn't cause a famine in Florida... As for your being part of a large country, that's irrelevant, because you didn't get food as charity from the government — you paid for (most) it, with industrious, profit-driven capitalists in a hurry to deliver supplies in exchange for money. If Nicaragua had any of that (instead of living harvest-to-harvest) — they would've been able to absorb an occasional hurricane too."

Having lived through a bunch of Hurricanes, I'd say that without the massive federal assistance Florida gets after a bad Hurricane, famine-like conditions would be a strong possibility. It's hard for "industrious profit driven capitalists" to get food when they can't leave their houses without being electrocuted to death by downed power-lines.

All of these things require lots of money, and you're right, if Nicaragua was richer, there wouldn't be any problems. But Nicaragua's GDP is higher right now then it was a couple years ago when they were controlled by right-wing parties. So Nicaragua under "Capitalist" management would have actually done slightly worse.

Of course, the fact that the United States and the Soviet Union funded a civil war in Nicaragua for two decades is a much larger factor in Nicaragua's current poverty then any decisions by their government.

Also, you ignore some additional difficulties that small countries have when hit by Natural Disasters. If a hurricane hits Nicaragua and destroys it's crop, then their currency will shoot down because their main export is down, making it much more expensive to buy food...

Re:Vaporware (1)

mi (197448) | more than 4 years ago | (#30116374)

Plugging this into excel and comparing with election08 data (Feel free to email me asking for the data if you don't trust me), the average Blue state gets $0.96 in spending for every dollar it pays in taxes. The average Red state receives $1.40 in spending for every dollar in taxes it pays.

These tables don't specify, what the money was spent on — a union-entrenching public-works project? Public housing? Paying off farmers to grow less food? One could make a case, that the Democrats are charging the productive to support the rest on purpose — to make everyone addicted to the government's support and destroy the "evil" Capitalism. Your figures would support that claim, actually...

But all that is only a little related to my earlier claim, that Democrats can't govern as good as Republicans. You dismissed my examples (New Orleans, New York before and after Giulliani, Seattle — I'd add Chicago [cbs2chicago.com] , if I had anything to compare it with) as "cherry-picking" — so, why don't you pick some of your own cherries to demonstrate the opposite?

It's hard for "industrious profit driven capitalists" to get food when they can't leave their houses without being electrocuted to death by downed power-lines.

That's irrelevant — downed power-lines are a danger to the benevolent free food distributors from the government just as well. The broken infrastructure has to be fixed regardless of who is then helping avoid famine. Both, however, are going to happen quickly and without much drama under Capitalism. Under Socialism, on the other hand, things will suffer, even when there is money [nytimes.com] .

Since there are more Democrats then Republicans at every level of government right now, this creates a strong theoretical reason to believe that Republicans do not perform better then Democrats.

What? How?..

But Nicaragua's GDP is higher right now then it was a couple years ago when they were controlled by right-wing parties. So Nicaragua under "Capitalist" management would have actually done slightly worse.

For the GDP to be simply higher than in prior year, not much is needed. The measure of good government is the speed of the product's continuing growth. Nicaragua's Capitalists left a faster-growing GDP, than it has since grown under the Socialists. Although nobody knows for sure, the simple statistics [indexmundi.com] show the exact opposite to what you are saying, and confirm my assertions: Socialism is bad.

I doubt, you — with your demonstrated knack for Math and Statistics — could've missed the difference between GDP being higher vs. faster-growing. That you picked the former to state: "under "Capitalist" management would have actually done slightly worse," — when the full picture shows the opposite, makes me think, you aren't posting in good faith and reinforces my suspicions about the rest of your data...

Of course, the fact that the United States and the Soviet Union funded a civil war in Nicaragua for two decades is a much larger factor in Nicaragua's current poverty then any decisions by their government.

The civil war wound down 20 years ago. I don't expect them all to have HDTV and nice cars by now, but it does not take that long to figure out, how to survive a bad harvest year...

Re:Vaporware (2, Insightful)

Xveers (1003463) | more than 4 years ago | (#30093666)

But would you expect ANY sort of technological improvement like this to boost output by 50%? Such infrastructure improvements can take years to properly pay off dividends, so we may be waiting for some time before we get real results. That of course will be attributed to other inputs (either because cause/effect cannot be determined, or because it serves a political master better to have something else as the cause).

Re:Vaporware (1)

mi (197448) | more than 4 years ago | (#30093704)

But would you expect ANY sort of technological improvement like this to boost output by 50%?

Yes, why not?

Such infrastructure improvements can take years to properly pay off dividends, so we may be waiting for some time before we get real results.

I'm not even asking for the improvements to pay off — this is separate from an actual output increase. I just want an appreciable increase — regardless of whether it has (yet) paid for the software — before I get excited.

Re:Vaporware (1)

Xveers (1003463) | more than 4 years ago | (#30093944)

But would you expect ANY sort of technological improvement like this to boost output by 50%?

Yes, why not?

Because pulling percentage growth numbers out of thin air is PHB at its finest. Set the bar at an unrealistic level and you won't get any motivation or progress. Goals have to be at least somewhat realistic and attainable in some manner for them to be actually useful. Otherwise you get something out of a dilbert cartoon.

Such infrastructure improvements can take years to properly pay off dividends, so we may be waiting for some time before we get real results.

I'm not even asking for the improvements to pay off — this is separate from an actual output increase. I just want an appreciable increase — regardless of whether it has (yet) paid for the software — before I get excited.

Fair enough on that. :) With this however, only time will really tell however.

Project Cybersyn (2, Informative)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#30095924)

About boosting output, have a look at what Chile did with Project Cybersyn [wikipedia.org] during the Allende reign.

Of course, when the CIA-backed coup [wikipedia.org] took place (Project FUBELT/Track II [wikipedia.org] , the first thing the USA-installed puppet dictator Pinochet did was to dismantle the project.

The Cybersyn project itself was not a reason for the coup. It was collateral damage. But having a more efficient way of governing and routing around damage such as outside-sponsosred strikes in this little leftist country was obviously anti-business, and therefore anti-USA.

A note from the 2009 reconstruction of Cybersyn [syncho.com] :

Cybernet was a technology at hand that helped the government to respond to a damaging strike of retailers and truck owners. At the time it dawned that CyberNet could be a tool to increase their capabilities for decision making; with it their decisions could flow and reach each other in almost real time.

Interestingly enough, the coup happened at September 11. The year was 1973.

Re:Vaporware (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#30096152)

But would you expect ANY sort of technological improvement like this to boost output by 50%? Such infrastructure improvements can take years to properly pay off dividends, so we may be waiting for some time before we get real results.

Yes you would expect it. No, this is the type of thing that will begin to pay off in one growing season.

This is not an agricultural technology, it is a market information technology being used in agriculture. It increases the farmers knowledge of the markets they are selling to, enabling them to sell more profitably. With those higher profits they will certainly invest in already existing agricultural tech, for example the guy working his field with a hoe will buy an ox, the guy using an ox will buy a tractor (I have no idea the actual state of Nicaraguan agriculture but it's a poor country and there is certainly equipment available that they lack because of money). That is why you can see an almost immediate increase as a result of this.

Re:Vaporware (1, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#30094350)

Shut up and report back, when agricultural output in the country increases by, at least, 50%...

To an individual farmer, if they can double their price by selling where there is a shortage then they have effectively doubled their crop. This is better market information, the politics of those who paid for the development is irrelevant. Software works according to maths, not politics.

Re:Vaporware (1)

grrrgrrr (945173) | more than 4 years ago | (#30096046)

You are reading the facts and the article thru a extremely right wing ideological glasses. You have distorted the facts from the article beyond believe. Also I hope that you are not in anyway a supporter of a Fascist regime like that of Somoza, that regime was more to blame for the revolutiuon than the sandinistas . As you can read in the article the revolution (not only the sandinistas where fighting like you seem to think) was bad for agricurtiral development like fighting and war in general is but when it was over it had recuperated.

Re:Vaporware (1)

grrrgrrr (945173) | more than 4 years ago | (#30096538)

Also I object to you spewing your extremist political bullshit in a forum that is not about that please go elsewhere with your propaganda.

Re:Vaporware (1)

KazW (1136177) | more than 4 years ago | (#30096738)

Something like this is unlikely to happen, from their websites, they are extremely anti-GM crops... When will people learn that GM crops will most likely save the world(from hunger)?

Re:Vaporware (1)

GameboyRMH (1153867) | more than 4 years ago | (#30102910)

No voy a comer ese maiz mutante, hombre! No quiero convertir en algun tipo de monstruo, como en las peliculas!!! Prefiero morir de hambre!!!!!1!uno

Re:Vaporware (1, Informative)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#30100662)

Something changes for the better in Nicaragua (from almost no agricultural information to some publicly available agricultural information). You start throwing shit at the Sandinists and their 1980's agricultural policies. Man, this was over twenty years ago. Why not just be happy that something changes for the good?

And if you refer to back then, you should do it properly. Did you know that:
* a major (but never realised) 1980's Sandinist priority was feeding the population, more than increasing the agricultural trade surplus
* the US government was convicted by the International Court of Justice, amongst others for actively supporting the Contra terrorists and mining Nicaraguan harbours
* one of the Contra's main targets as a terrorist organisation was the agricultural sector

Hopefully it works out (3, Insightful)

future assassin (639396) | more than 4 years ago | (#30093192)

and show that giving poor countries technology so that their people can learn, grow and prosper will work out better then just throwing food and money at them just too keep their miserable, go nowhere lives going.

Give a man a fish he eats for a day, teach a man to fish he eats for a lifetime.

On the other hand it would be in best interest of big corporation that these poor countries don't move up and prosper as this kills cheap labor.

Re:Hopefully it works out (3, Informative)

0100010001010011 (652467) | more than 4 years ago | (#30093420)

Set a man on fire and he's warm for the rest of his life.

Hopefully it Tie-Dyes out (1)

Ostracus (1354233) | more than 4 years ago | (#30094590)

"and show that giving poor countries technology so that their people can learn, grow and prosper will work out better then just throwing food and money at them just too keep their miserable, go nowhere lives going."

Maybe, but before you all decide that technology is the silver bullet to what ails the third world. You might want to view this [hulu.com] Global Voices video over at Hulu.

Re:Hopefully it Tie-Dyes out (1)

TheRaven64 (641858) | more than 4 years ago | (#30097844)

I love the irony of 'global' voices not being available outside the USA.

Reagan was right! all damned commies! (1)

fantomas (94850) | more than 4 years ago | (#30096466)

Ronnie Reagan and Ollie North were right! all the Nicaraguans are damned communists! Open Source?! this would never have happened if the USA had continued to fund the Contras! [wikipedia.org]

Well... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#30096504)

At our farm we have been using a particular open source device for generations. We call it "well".

Lean Muscle X (1)

sandyor (1678856) | more than 4 years ago | (#30104366)

If I read well, Senator Feinsten clearly said: "“Today across the United States, there are not enough agricultural workers to pick, prune, pack or harvest our country’s crops. With an inadequate supply of workers, farmers from Maine to California, and from Washington State to Georgia, have watched their produce rot and their farms lay fallow over the years,” Lean Muscle X [goarticles.com]

Knowledge is dangerous. Send in the marines! (1)

echtertyp (1094605) | more than 4 years ago | (#30106042)

These peasants are going to get used to looking at data and making decisions, and then what? It's a slippery slope to scientific habits and secularism. We'd best send in the Marines to set things right before it gets too far. Nicaraguans need to accept their place: illiterate, undernourished, and working obediently and QUIETLY for American business.

Internet (1)

mahadiga (1346169) | more than 4 years ago | (#30113650)

What % of Nicaragua farmers are connected to Internet?
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