Sunday, November 23, 2008

Europeana Crashes on Launch Day to Return in December in a Better More Improved Version

Not everything is as easy as it looks. On November 20, 2008 the European Union Digital Libraries Initiative launched Europeana, a multimillion-euro digital library intended as a friendly and cooperative European competitor to things like Google Book Search.

As written by Leigh Phillips at EUobserver, here is the idea:

"Websurfers can access some 2 million books, maps, recordings, photographs, archival documents, paintings and films from national libraries and cultural institutions of the EU's 27 member states.

"Europeana is much more than a library, it is a veritable dynamo to inspire 21st century Europeans to emulate the creativity of innovative forbears like the drivers of the Renaissance," said commission president Jose Manuel Barroso at the launch."

But the launch hit a serious snag, again as Leigh Phillips writes at EUobserver:

"Going live on Thursday (20 November), the site was instantly overwhelmed by the 10 million visitors per hour it was receiving and crashed mid-morning, requiring a quick doubling of the number of servers supporting the library. It crashed again in the early evening."

When one now goes to the Europeana website, one is greeted with the following message - our scan of the current page there:


Rome was not built in a day.

The New York Times Stephen Castle reports in
Europeana Goes Online and Is Then Overwhelmed

Thursday, November 20, 2008

EQLS : The Second European Quality of Life Survey – First Findings viz. Deuxième enquête européenne sur la qualité de vie - Premiers résultats

Via we have learned of the 2nd EQLS (European Quality of Life Survey) by Eurofound (European Foundation for the Improvement of Living and Working Conditions).

The EQLS Survey will be published in full only in the year 2009, but as of November 18, 2008 we do now already have the first results of that survey in an English-language .pdf and a French-language .pdf, respectively titled Second European Quality of Life Survey – First Findings viz. Deuxième enquête européenne sur la qualité de vie - Premiers résultats.

The results confirm the sentiment of the Bob Hope cinema film of the year 1965 whose title I'll take Sweden might just as well represent the primarily Nordic winners of this Eurofound survey, as the Nordic nations dominate in "happiness", as shown by the following graphics from the EQLS First Results:

EQLS Second European Quality Of Life Survey - First Results - Figures 1 and 2

The Life Satisfaction and Happiness Index for the European Union Member States and Candidate Countries gives the following rankings, from most happy and satisfied to least happy and least satisfied:

1. Denmark
2. Sweden
3. Finland
4. Norway
5. Netherlands
6. Luxembourg
7. Ireland
8. Malta
9. Belgium
10. United Kingdom
11. France
12. Spain
13. Germany
14. Cyprus
15. Poland
16. Austria
17. Slovakia
18. Estonia
19. Czech Republic
20. Greece
21. Italy
22. Romania
23. Croatia
24. Lithuania
25. Portugal
26. Turkey
27. Latvia
28. Hungary
29. FYR Macedonia
30. Bulgaria

The First Findings of the Survey cover:

Life Satisfaction
- General parameters
- Optimism
- Subjective well-being

Income and Deprivation
- Household essentials and deprivation
- Dealing with lack of income


Work-life balance

Health and health care
- Mental health
- Health care services

Housing, environment and quality of society
- Quality of housing
- Local environment

Quality of society
- Trust in other people and Institutions
- Tension between societal groups


For further information we refer to the contact data found at the end of the First Findings publication:

Teresa Renehan, Information Liaison Officer:
European Foundation for the Improvement of Living and Working
Wyattville Road, Loughlinstown, Dublin 18, Ireland
Telephone: (+353 1) 204 31 00

Crossposted to LawPundit.

Tuesday, November 18, 2008

What Do Europeans Care About? Google Searches as Measured in the Individual Member Countries by the EU Observer Monthly Top 10

EU Observer has a new feature by which they produce a monthly EU Observer list via Google Zeitgeist of the Top 10 percentage spikes in Google searches in the EU, which, as the EU Observer writes, "allows small countries such as Finland and Austria to figure in the results, if an event prompted a sudden surge in interest."

The top ten so weighted searches in October, 2008 in the EU were:

  1. HALLOWEEN: American style "trick or treating" swept Europe on 31 October.
  2. VAALIKONE: Finns searched election website in municipal elections on 26 October.
  3. ICESAVE: UK subsidiary of Iceland's Landisbanki declared bankruptcy.
  4. SUPRENALOTTO: Italy's lottery site swept when Sicilian suburb won €100 million.
  5. KENZA FARAH: The French R&B singer was hurt in a car accident on 13 October.
  6. FALLOUT 3: This nuclear simulation game was launched on 16 October.
  7. PES 2009: The Pro Evolution Soccer 2009 video game was released.
  8. X FACTOR: The UK's hit reality show drew record audiences in October.
  9. AC DC: The Australian band released its new album Black Ice on 20 October.
  10. MAM TALENT: The Polish version of the television show "I Have Talent!".
Take a look. There IS a big world out there, beyond our own neighborhoods. Stay informed.

Crossposted to LawPundit.