Quantifying the Gulf Oil Spill

A Technical Communications Perspective


How about 50,000 Cars on the Pacific Coast Highway?

Or a 747 with 500 on board flying for 57 minutes?

Austin, Texas, May 20, 2010 — What does 5,000 (or 50,000) barrels of oil a day mean to you?  We’ve been hearing that number for almost a month now.  And there is some debate whether or not those are accurate numbers.  But what does it mean other than ‘a whole lotta oil’?  This is the question that Global Language Monitor President, Paul JJ Payack examined over the last few days in the following analysis.

Metric Conversion:  1 gallon = 3.79 liters; 1 barrel = 158.98 liters; 1 mile = 1.61 kilometers


Listen or Read: KUHF — Analyst Puts BP Gulf Oil Spill Into Perspectiveto Quantify the Oil Spill at 50,000 Barrels Per Day?

Back when I taught technical and scientific communications at the University of Massachusetts, a key function was to make physical dimensions meaningful to the audience, so we would describe a mainframe computer as the size of a washing machine (used to be an 18 wheeler), a server might be the size of a breadbox (though few have actually seen a breadbox nowadays but we all know it’s about ‘yeah big’).  In the same manner Jupiter is about the size of 80,000 Earths, the Moon’s diameter is about equal to the width of the continental US (or the distance from New York to LA), and you could stuff approximately one million Earths into the Sun.

When you describe the volume of a liquid, such as water, you make comparisons like ‘if you emptied Lake Tahoe – which is nearly 1000 feet deep — and spread about 14 inches over the entire state’.

In terms of energy usage, a common description is to equate a megawatt to the number of homes for which it supplies power.  So a one megawatt nuclear reactor, or wind farm, can power about a thousand American homes, or 10,000 homes in less-developed parts of the world.

So what does the 5,000 to 50,000 barrels a day mean?   First question is ‘what’s a barrel’?’  A barrel is filled with forty-two gallons of oil.  So 5,000 to 50,000 barrels equates to some 210,000 to 2.1 million gallons (or 16.8 million half-pints if you’re thinking in terms small milk cartons distributed in schools).

It does not help, of course, when the CEO of BP likens the spill to a drop in the bucket in relation to the capacity of the oceans.  This strikes most people as condescending but it is actually NOT true.  It is far less than a drop in the bucket when compared to the size of the seas, which contain about 321 million cubic miles of water, so even if the spill is now 1 mile deep by 1 mile wide, by 1 mile in height (USGS numbers) that would be far less than a drop (1 part oil to 321,000,000 parts water).  (Though I am definitely not using this explanation to support BP’s argument here.)

Put another way, in light sweet crude you get about 19.5 gallons of gasoline from the 42 gallons of oil.  Now if a typical car gets about 20 mpg on the highway, that would be equivalent to about 390 miles per barrel.

This is the distance from Los Angeles to San Francisco (actually 383 miles). So if the spill has been spewing 5,000 to 50,000 barrels per day since April 20; that is enough to power 5,000 to 50,000 cars a day along the Pacific Coast highway (or the I-5) from San Francisco to LA.

One more equivalency.  747 aircraft in flight with about 500 people on board are estimated to use about use about a gallon of kerosene a second. About 4.1 gallons are distilled from each barrel of oil.  So 5,000 barrels of crude oil produce 20,500 gallons of kerosene, while 50,000 barrels of oil produce 205,000 gallons of kerosene.

This means 5,000 barrels enables a 747 with 500 passengers to fly 5.7 minutes, while the amount of kerosene from 50,000 barrels of crude oil will allow the same plane to fly almost an hour (56.9 minutes).



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tracking


Healthcare

Healthcare NTI™ (NarrativeTracker Index™) is the first social media tracking tool designed to monitor public opinions on healthcare. Because the Healthcare NTI is based on the national (or regional or, even local) discourse – in real time, it provides a more accurate picture of what the public is actually thinking, on any topic, at any point in time.

Click here 

 

NarrativeTracker: the First Social Media-based Tracking Tool Announced

NarrativeTracker Index™ to provide policy-makers unbiased public opinion on Healthcare Reform or any other topic.
(Media-Newswire.com) – Dallas and Austin, Texas, May 12, 2010 – Today, OpenConnect, an innovator in defining and improving process efficiency,and The Global Language Monitor ( GLM ), the media analytics company, announced the joint launch of the Healthcare NarrativeTracker Index™ ( NTI™ ), the first product specifically designed to use social media-based monitoring to better understand the issues driving healthcare reform.Because the Healthcare NTI is based on the national discourse, it provides a real-time, accurate picture of what the public is saying about any topic related to healthcare, at any point in time. In addition to the NTI, the Narrative Tracker Arc™ follows the rise and fall of sub-stories within the main narrative to provide a comprehensive overview of the opinions surrounding a single issue.The ‘narrative’ refers to the stream of public opinion captured by blogs and other social media outlets on the Internet. The rise of the narrative actually renders positions on the issues almost meaningless, since positions now matter less than how they fit into a particular narrative.

“Just as the OpenConnect Comprehend solution provides an unprecedented view into a company’s workflows looking for process variations that drive inefficiency and waste, NTI tracks the ‘narrative’ of a subject, as well as projecting future trajectories for the narrative,” said Edward ML Peters, CEO of OpenConnect.

The result has several advantages over traditional polls:

1 ) Immediacy

2 ) The lack of any bias that tends to creep into traditional polling, e.g., when individuals answer questions with what they think are the ‘correct’ answers rather than their true opinions.

3 ) NTI lets policy and decision makers focus on the true issues driving perceptions and concerns rather than being driven by false and phantom concepts.

In addition, the Narrative Tracker Arc™ follows the rise and fall of sub-stories within the main narrative.

“The goal of influencers, whether it’s the media, advertisers or politicians, is to spin news so that it resonates best with their target audience,” said Paul JJ Payack, President and Chief Word Analyst of GLM. NTI is more effective in capturing the true opinion of the public because it tracks unfiltered keywords in Social Media and other sources, rather than how that opinion is interpreted by the news media or by pollsters.”

The NTI is based on the GLM’s Predictive Quantities Indicator™ ( PQI™ ). The PQI tracks the frequency of words and phrases in global print and electronic media on the Internet, throughout the Blogosphere and other social media outlets as well as accessing proprietary databases. The PQI is a weighted index that factors in long-term trends, short-term changes, momentum, and velocity.

The Healthcare NTI will be released on a monthly basis beginning Thursday, May 13, 2010. The first analysis details the various narratives surrounding Massachusetts Healthcare reform, a healthcare model which has been adopted in the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act, more commonly known as the national healthcare reform bill.

About Open Connect

OpenConnect business process discovery and analytics deliver event-driven intelligence to automatically discover workforce, process and customer variations that hinder operational efficiency. Armed with this information, executives can make the quick and incremental improvements that will increase process efficiency, improve employee productivity, reduce cost, and raise profitability. With a rich history of developing innovative technology, OpenConnect products are distributed in more than 60 countries and used by more than 60 percent of Fortune 100 companies. For more information on OpenConnect, visit www.oc.com.

About The Global Language Monitor
Austin-Texas-based Global Language Monitor analyzes and catalogues the latest trends in word usage and word choices, and their impact on the various aspects of culture, with a particular emphasis upon Global English.

Since 2003, GLM has launched a number of innovative products and services monitoring the Internet, the Blogosphere, Social Media as well as the Top 25,000 print and electronic media sites.

For more information on NarrativeTracker, call 1.925.367.7557, or send email to PaulJJPayack@gmail.com, or visit www.LanguageMonitor.com.

Read What the Media is Saying

May 12,2010

CNBC.com

OpenConnect Announces First Social Media Tracking Tool to Monitor Public Opinions on Healthcare NarrativeTracker Index(TM) to Provide Policy-Makers Unbiased Public Opinion on Aspects Related to Healthcare
Austin company gauging health care opinion through Web word tracking
OpenConnect Announces First Social Media Tracking Tool to Monitor Public Opinions on Healthcare
OpenConnect Announces First Social Media Tracking Tool to Monitor Public Opinions on Healthcare
OpenConnect Announces First Social Media Tracking Tool to Monitor Public Opinions on Healthcare
OpenConnect Announces First Social Media Tracking Tool to Monitor Public Opinions on Healthcare
OpenConnect Announces First Social Media Tracking Tool to Monitor Public Opinions on Healthcare
OpenConnect Announces First Social Media Tracking Tool to Monitor Public Opinions on Healthcare
OpenConnect Announces First Social Media Tracking Tool to Monitor Public Opinions on Healthcare
OpenConnect Announces First Social Media Tracking Tool to Monitor Public Opinions on Healthcare
Austin company gauging health care opinion through Web word tracking

For More Information Contact:
Paul JJ Payack
pjjp@post.Harvard.edu
925-367-7557



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NarrativeTracker Analysis Reveals Top Buzzwords in Healthcare Narrative

Top Buzzwords:  Rationing, Out-of-control Spending, Price Controls, Non-sustainable, and Mandate Failure

Dallas and Austin, Texas, May 13, 2010 — In what could presage mounting difficulties for the national healthcare reform roll-out, the top buzzwords associated with the Massachusetts Healthcare Reform ‘narrative’ have been found to be Rationing, Out-of-control-spending, Price Controls, Non-sustainable, and Mandate Failure.   In addition, Gaming the System was the key underlying trend that was discovered.   The results of the Healthcare NarrativeTracker Index™ (NTI™) were reported earlier today by The Global Language Monitor, the media analytics company, and OpenConnect, an innovator in defining and improving process efficiency.

The NTI focused on the unfolding narrative about the Massachusetts Healthcare Reform Law since it is frequently cited as a model for the national legislation.  The analysis was performed to better understand and help clarify the national healthcare reform discourse.

“There is a very good possibility that what we are learning from the Massachusetts Healthcare Reform can be applied directly to the national healthcare reform act,” said Edward ML Peters, CEO of OpenConnect, “And what we are seeing there is a perfect storm of ‘rationing’, out-of-control ‘spending’, ‘price controls’ and ‘unsustainability’ — that have now moved to the forefront of the Massachusetts discussion.”

The top concerns from the on-going narrative concerning Massachusetts Healthcare Reform Law in the immediate aftermath of “The Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act” being signed into law include:

1.  Rationing – Along with related keywords (allocation, etc.) was a strong No.1

2.  Spending Increase – References involving increased spending up 400% for the year

3.  Price Controls — A growing concern; up 1400% for the year

4.  Non-sustainable – Scored 40% higher than ‘sustainable’

5.  Mandate Failure – Experiencing a sustained rise

The NarrativeTracker also found these key underlying trends (nTracker Arc) that are foundational to the main narrative.

1.     The question of quality is supplanted by the issue of ‘fairness’ with fairness being driven by the ‘gaming the system’ arc.

2.     Gaming has come to the fore with stories of individuals abusing (or outsmarting) the system by signing up for healthcare only when a medical procedure is looming.   (In this scenario, the average cost of a month of coverage is $600 while the procedures average about $10,000.)

3.  The mentions of ‘failure’ with the keyword ‘reform’ have been rising steeply, some 240% in the last 60 days.

The analysis was completed in early May 2010.

The NarrativeTracker Index is the first product specifically designed to use social media-based monitoring to better understand the issues driving healthcare reform.  Because the Healthcare NTI is based on the national discourse, it provides a real-time, accurate picture of what the public is saying about any topic related to healthcare, at any point in time.  In addition to the NTI, the nTracker Arc™ follows the rise and fall of sub-stories within the main narrative to provide a comprehensive overview of the opinions surrounding a single issue.

The ‘narrative’ refers to the stream of public opinion captured by blogs and other social media outlets on the Internet.   The rise of the narrative actually renders positions on the issues almost meaningless, since positions now matter less than how they fit into a particular narrative.

The NTI is based on the GLM’s Predictive Quantities Indicator™ (PQI™).  The PQI tracks the frequency of words and phrases in global print and electronic media on the Internet, throughout the Blogosphere and other social media outlets as well as accessing proprietary databases.  The PQI is a weighted index that factors in long-term trends, short-term changes, momentum, and velocity.

The Healthcare NTI will be released on a monthly basis beginning Thursday, May 13, 2010.  The first analysis details the various narratives surrounding Massachusetts Healthcare reform, a healthcare model which has been adopted in the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act, more commonly known as the national healthcare reform bill.

For more information, call 1.512.815.8836, send email to pauljjpayack@gmail.com, or visit www.LanguageMonitor.com.



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tracking


NarrativeTracker: the First Social Media-based Tracking Tool Announced


Click here for a NarrativeTracker Overview


NarrativeTracker Index™ to provide policy-makers unbiased public opinion on Healthcare Reform

Dallas and Austin, Texas, May 12, 2010 —  Today OpenConnect Systems and The Global Language Monitor have announced the joint launch of the Healthcare NarrativeTracker Index™ (NTI™), the first product specifically designed to use social media-based monitoring to better understand the issues driving healthcare reform. Because the Healthcare NTI is based on the national discourse, it provides a real-time, accurate picture of what the public is saying about any topic related to healthcare, at any point in time. In addition to the NTI, the Narrative Tracker Arc™ follows the rise and fall of sub-stories within the main narrative to provide a comprehensive overview of the opinions surrounding a single issue.

The ‘narrative’ refers to the stream of public opinion captured by blogs and other social media outlets on the Internet. The rise of the narrative actually renders positions on the issues almost meaningless, since positions now matter less than how they fit into a particular narrative.

“Just as the OpenConnect Comprehend solution provides an unprecedented view into a company’s workflows looking for process variations that drive inefficiency and waste, NTI tracks the ‘narrative’ of a subject, as well as projecting future trajectories for the narrative,” said Edward ML Peters, CEO of OpenConnect.

The result has several advantages over traditional polls:

1) Immediacy

2) The lack of any bias that tends to creep into traditional polling, e.g., when individuals answer questions with what they think are the ‘correct’ answers rather than their true opinions.

3) NTI lets policy and decision makers focus on the true issues driving perceptions and concerns rather than being driven by false and phantom concepts.

In addition, the Narrative Tracker Arc™ follows the rise and fall of sub-stories within the main narrative.

“The goal of influencers, whether it’s the media, advertisers or politicians, is to spin news so that it resonates best with their target audience,” said Paul JJ Payack, President and Chief Word Analyst of GLM.  NTI is more effective in capturing the true opinion of the public because it tracks unfiltered keywords in Social Media and other sources, rather than how that opinion is interpreted by the news media or by pollsters.”

The NTI is based on the GLM’s Predictive Quantities Indicator™ (PQI™). The PQI tracks the frequency of words and phrases in global print and electronic media on the Internet, throughout the Blogosphere and other social media outlets as well as accessing proprietary databases. The PQI is a weighted index that factors in long-term trends, short-term changes, momentum, and velocity.

The Healthcare NTI will be released on a monthly basis beginning Thursday, May 13, 2010. The first analysis details the various narratives surrounding Massachusetts Healthcare reform, a healthcare model which has been adopted in the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act, more commonly known as the national healthcare reform bill.

About Open Connect

OpenConnect business process discovery and analytics deliver event-driven intelligence to automatically discover workforce, process and customer variations that hinder operational efficiency. Armed with this information, executives can make the quick and incremental improvements that will increase process efficiency, improve employee productivity, reduce cost, and raise profitability. With a rich history of developing innovative technology, OpenConnect products are distributed in more than 60 countries and used by more than 60 percent of Fortune 100 companies. For more information on OpenConnect, visit www.oc.com.

About The Global Language Monitor

Austin-Texas-based Global Language Monitor analyzes and catalogues the latest trends in word usage and word choices, and their impact on the various aspects of culture, with a particular emphasis upon Global English.

Since 2003, GLM has launched a number of innovative products and services monitoring the Internet, the Blogosphere, Social Media as well as the Top 25,000 print and electronic media sites.

Go to NarrativeTracker Page

For more information on NarrativeTracker, call 1.925.367.7557, or send email to PaulJJPayack@gmail.com , or visit www.LanguageMonitor.com.


BMW Group Award für Interkulturelles Engagement
Aktuell & Wissenswert

To read this article in German (02 27 other languages) go to our sister site, Mojofiti.

No noising, please.
Vor kurzem erzielte die englische Sprache einen Weltrekord. Mehr als eine Million Wörter umfasst das Englische nun, laut dem in Austin (Texas) ansässigen Global Language Monitor (GLM), einer Institution, die seit 1999 die Anzahl der Wörter in der englischen Sprache zählt. Zum Vergleich: Die spanische Sprache umfasst etwa 275.000 Wörter, Französisch gerade einmal 100.000.

„Englisch ist eine offene Sprache und absorbiert Wörter sehr schnell“, so der Linguist, Wortanalyst und Gründer des GLM Paul Payack. „Die Franzosen sagen nicht Computer sondern L’Ordinateur. Amerikaner haben kein Problem mit Wörtern wie ‚Kindergarten‘ oder ‚Croissant‘. Sogar ‚Ketchup‘, die Bezeichnung für ein urtypisches amerikanisches Produkt, ist eigentlich ein Wort aus dem Kantonesischen.“

Durch die weltweite Verbreitung der englischen Sprache, erst durch das britische Empire und später durch die von den USA vorangetriebene Globalisierung, hat sich die Aufnahme neuer Wörter noch beschleunigt, so Payack.

Eine noch fundamentalere Evolution erlebt die Sprache jedoch durch die Entkopplung der englischen Muttersprachler von der Verwendung „ihrer“ Sprache. „Wenn sich ein Chinese und ein Franzose unterhalten, dann höchstwahrscheinlich auf Englisch“, erklärt Payack. „Englische Muttersprachler sind daran gar nicht mehr beteiligt. Nun reden diese beiden aber natürlich kein Oxford-Englisch, sondern eine sehr regional geprägte Variante des Englischen: Der Chinese fügt vielleicht am Ende einer Frage ein typisches chinesisches Fragewort wie „ma“ ein und der Franzose benutzt französischen Satzbau.“

So entsteht beispielsweise das Phänomen des sogenannten „Chinglish“ oder „Spanglish“, Mischungen aus dem Englischen und Chinesischen oder Spanischen. Neben neuen Wörtern wie „no noising“ statt „quite please“ oder „airline pulp“ für „airline food“, entstehen so auch ganz neue Sprachstrukturen. Die pure Menge der Nichtmuttersprachler, die Englisch in ihrem täglichen Leben verwenden, ist zu einer treibenden Kraft in der Entwicklung der Sprache geworden. Dieser Prozess führt zur Entstehung einer Spielart des Englischen, die man zum Beispiel auf internationalen Tagungen oder anderen Gelegenheiten beobachten kann, bei denen viele Nichtmuttersprachler gemeinsam auf Englisch kommunizieren. „An Universitäten und in Unternehmen auf der ganzen Welt und vor allem im Internet: Überall und zu jeder Zeit wird englisch von zahllosen Nichtmuttersprachlern gesprochen. Das führt mit Sicherheit zur größten Evolution, die die englische Sprache jemals erlebt hat”, so Payack. „Auch wenn das sehr lange dauern würde, ein solcher Prozess könnte sogar zur Entstehung einer vollkommen neuen Weltsprache führen.“

Solche Szenarien, die konservative Sprachschützer in den Wahnsinn treiben würden, lassen Sprachforscher wie Paul Payack jedoch kalt. Im Gegenteil: Payack begrüßt den Wandel. „Wir haben keine Institutionen die bestimmen, so wird Englisch gesprochen und so nicht. Die englische Sprache bleibt flexibel und kann sich der Zeit anpassen. Ich denke, das ist auch besser so.“

Webseite des „Global Language Monitor“:
http://www.languagemonitor.com

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