Monday, July 8, 2013

Masdar City of Light

Popular Science gave a large area of reporting to Masdar City, an $18-billion experiment under construction to build an eco-friendly city which will hold 40,000 residents in only two square miles of barren desert.

The reporter took a wrong turn on the way back to his hotel in Abu Dhabi and "ended up at the Al Wthba camel-race track, en eight-kilometer oval etched on the hard, brown floor of the desert. As the camels lined up for the day's third race, I noticed that they had on their backs not human riders but a metal contraption with a three-foot stick poking out the back." A nearby cameraman covering the race for Egyptian television explained," Camel owners had pressed generations of children into service as jockey, but after enough of them fell off and were trampled to death, the federation that regulates the sport ordered them replaced with robots."

"The camels were lean and long-legged - genetically engineered for speed and endurance. As they took off with their weird slow-motion gait, a phalanx of SUV's roared after them on a track, weaving for position and blaring their horns in a jumbled, parallel race. Each vehicle contained a trainer, shouting at his camel through a loudspeaker attached to the beast's robot and stabbing at a button to remotely rap the beast with the three-foot stick.
Could not understand the reporter, but the video showed it all!

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