Posted by Victor Crew on

Vaccine Passports Probably Coming

It may be no surprise to some but as vaccines are starting to roll out in the US and worldwide people are waiting for when they can return to doing their normal activities like shop, go to the movies and travel.

However besides actually getting the vaccine there may be a catch—you may also need a vaccine passport.

More than one company has begun creating smart phone apps or other kinds of digital systems for individuals that would allow them to upload data on their Covid-19 vaccinations and tests. In turn this data would create digital credentials allowing or denying access to stadiums, music venues, theaters, business offices and most likely other countries.

Created by the Geneva-based non-profit the Commons Project and the World Economic Forum have partnered with well-known airlines such JetBlue, United and Virgin Atlantic and hundreds of health systems in the US and the government of Aruba is the Common Trust Network.

They are working on the CommonPass app which would allow users to upload medical data, such as Covid-19 data, proof of vaccination by certified medical professionals. This would generate a QR code that authorities could use to certify a person is vaccinated without giving away specific medical data during the interaction. The app would also provide useful data to the user like health pass requirements for all points of arrival or departure on an itinerary.


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Keyhole Wasps A Problem For Brisbane Airport

Despite Australia’s advanced biosecurity controls a new, tiny immigrant insect is threatening the safety of planes at the Brisbane Airport.

The keyhole wasp is from Central and South America and also the Caribbean. The little wasp first caused issues at the airport in 2013. Wasps forced a Etihad Airways A330 headed for Singapore to come back to Brisbane just minutes into its flight.

Once grounded, maintenance workers found that the pilot’s pitot tube was blocked by mud. This is the tool they use to measure airspeed.

For the keyhole wasp this kind of cavity is a perfect place to build a nest. In the latter case the plane was only on the tarmac for a few hours and in that time the wasps completely blocked the instrument.

According to workers currently servicing planes on the tarmac in Brisbane, within in minutes of planes landing keyhole wasps are seen flying around the probes.

Experts warn that if something isn’t done, the keyhole wasps could easily spread to other Australian airports.

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Where to Find a Most Impressive Collection of Viking Runestones

If one travels north of Sweden’s capital, just about 30 minutes north, they would reach the lakeside district Vallentuna. Vallentuna is very peaceful community that includes picnic areas, playgrounds and cobblestone churches. While it is a pleasant present-day site it will also allow visitors a journey into Sweden’s Viking history.

Among Vallentuna’s pastoral greenery are many runestones. These magical stones are believed to form a gateway to a one-thousand-year-old Viking civilization. One that is now believe to be one of Scandinavia’s most important historic sites.

Once known as Runriket or the Rune Kingdom, the collection of over 100 Viking age runestones are a light on Sweden’s past. The moss-covered stones, though ancient, still bare Old Norse inscription that tell us truths about Sweden’s ancestors.

While Vikings are often depicted as heartless pagan warriors who spend their idle time feasting and drinking, the runes show evidence of a devote Christian society on the brink of a more typical medieval lifestyle.



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Kazakhstan Tourism Board Adopts “Borat” Catch Phrase “Very nice!” for Marketing Campaign


If you were even vaguely conscious during 2006 you probably heard people crowing “Very nice!” in a vaguely Eastern European accent. This was the catch phrase Sacha Baron Cohen’s character Borat who was the main character of Cohen raunchy comedy by the same name.

Cohen’s character was from a extremely fictionalized version of the country of Kazakhstan who, at the time, threatened to sue Cohen and banned the franchise.

The former Soviet state has had a complete changed of heart with the release of the second Borat movie, going so far as to adopt the slogan “very nice!” to a tourism campaign.

Dennis Keen, an American living in the real Kazakhstan and his friend Yermek Utemissoy pitched the slogan a set of four short commercials using the catch phrase to the country’s tourism board. Each of them ending with “Kazakhstan. Very nice!”

Kairat Sadvakassov, Dept. Chairman of Kazakh Tourism, stated to the HuffPost, that the slogan encapsulates the tourism potential of the country in a short, catchy way.

When Cohen heard of Kazakhstans adoption of his character’s catch phrase we released the following statement:

 “This is a comedy, and the Kazakhstan in the film has nothing to do with the real country,” Baron Cohen wrote in an email to the Times. “I chose Kazakhstan because it was a place that almost nobody in the U.S. knew anything about, which allowed us to create a wild, comedic, fake world. The real Kazakhstan is a beautiful country with a modern, proud society — the opposite of Borat’s version.”

The new Borat film titled “Borat Subsequent Moviefilm” is streaming on Amazon.

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Tiny Village in Italy Offers to Pay Young Italians to Move There

While the story might sound familiar at first, as it has been happening more and more, an Italian village offers up abandoned homes for pennies on the dollar with the caveat the new owners quickly renovate the house.

Some are going to even greater extremes. Candela in Puglia, for example, began offering new residents a little over $2,000 to move there in 2017.

The best deal yet has come from a walled, a medieval village in Abruzzo in the central south of Italy, Santo Stefano di Sessannio. They are willing to pay people willing to move to the village and start a business there. They will further support them by giving them very inexpensive rent.

Mayor Fabio Santavicca said that the village isn’t try to sell anything to anyone, they simply want the village to continue to live. The only catches are you have to be a resident of Italy and be under forty years old.

The village has only 115 residents, most are retired and fewer than 20 residents are under the age of 13.