At Premier Darrell Dexter's request, the Hollis Street facade of Province House shines green every night this week in honor of the Green Porch Light Project for Organ and Tissue Donation, a grass roots campaign in which supporters of organ and tissue donation turn their porch lights green to celebrate National Organ and Tissue Donation Awareness Week, April 23-28. As darkness began to settle over West End Halifax Wednesday night, Rosa Eileen Barss Donham got in the spirit with a green porch light and blue butterfly wings, symbol of Nova Scotia's Legacy of Life program. Rosa knows someone dear to her...

Earlier today, I posted a photograph of uncertain provenance showing Nova Scotia as seen from the International Space Station at night, and wondered out loud where it had come from. The estimable Bethany Horne of Halifax Open File pointed us to this Reddit post, and thence to this collection of NASA astronaut videography, where we tracked down the amazing sequence from which our image — a screenshot, as it turns out — was clipped. Check out this gorgeous time-lapse video from the space station's January 29 pass up the East Coast of North America, starting at the southern edge of the Gulf of...

Ross Ferry resident Jeannie Ferguson puts April and May in perspective: If Nova Scotia had better weather, we couldn't afford to live here....

That's what Atlantic tech blogger Alexis Madrigal calls Google's Books Ngram Viewer. Google has scanned about 10 percent of all the books ever published. Enter any word or phrase into the search box, and the viewer returns a graph of its frequency of appearance in books published over the last two centuries. Note that the searches are case sensitive, and you can compare the relative frequencies of up to four five different words or phrases, separating them by commas in the search box. Say, "Nova Scotia" and "Ontario," for example: Try it yourself, and please send me any interesting pairings you come up with. Madrigal's...

According to this crowd-sourced interactive graphic from priceofweed.com, Nova Scotia, New Brunswick, and PEI have the best retail reefer rates on the continent: This is a screenshot. Click here to view the interactive chart, then click on any dollar sign to get data on that state or province. Detailed Nova Scotia price reports here. (Click any of the Police reporters might want to bookmark this chart for ready reference next time the boys in blue claim the half dozen, half-grown plants they seized in Upper West Boot have a street value of 47 gazillion dollars. Hattip: Floatingsheep.com....

Aside from a small issue of geography, reader Ivan Smith says the Globe and Mail's take-out on racism in Nova Scotia, got it right. The popular notion that racism has disappeared from Nova Scotia is just as wrong as that geography. Racism is still here. Not as bad as it was in the 1960s or even the 1980s, but we still have a long way to go. How many Nova Scotians know that there were black slaves here? Smith recommends Simon Schama's Rough Crossings, a book and subsequent film depicting the treatment of blacks in Nova Scotia in the 1780s, available...

In the wake of February's cross-burning in Hants County, the Globe and Mail did what Nova Scotia newspapers ought to have done: assigned a top notch reporter to research and write a searching report on Nova Scotia's unfinished history of racism. Many of you will have seen Les Perreaux's piece when it appeared last month, but I missed it. He began by noting African Nova Scotia's unique backstory: [N]o other region on this side of the 49th parallel has Nova Scotia's long history of a black-and-white divide. Until the immigration reforms of the 1960s, 37 per cent of Canadian blacks lived...

Estonian travel buff Ahti Heinla used the distribution of photos on Panaramio to create a world heat map of touristiness. Yellow indicates high touristiness, red medium touristiness, and blue low touristiness. Areas having no Panoramio photos at all are grey. The analysis takes account of both the number photos and the number of authors in a given area. Here is a lo-res blowup of the Nova Scotia section. Note that despite the Nova Scotia Government's decades-old policy of promoting boring and exciting parts of Nova Scotia equally to tourists, visitors still flock to Cape Breton. ...

Haligonian Warren Reed has a sobering take on our discussion about potential "cures" for people with Down syndrome: I am still stuck on the Down Syndrome thread.  As Canadians with disabilities will tell you, Canada has a medical model of disability. The approach is, "let's fix what's wrong with you," rather than, "let's fix what's wrong with us." Hence the inaccessible buses, devilish sidewalks, and antediluvian building codes. The result is a hidden and large group of people who are disenfranchised, undervalued, ignored, and sometimes abused.  See the shocking account in Monday's Chronicle-Herald. One of my big defeats was an unsuccessful complaint...