Spray Painting Romania

From 1988 until 2012 i know that i will never paint in my life. I just don’t have the talent i remember saying to myself.

In 2012, i participated in Lithuania in a European project where we had learned how to paint using graffiti spray painting.

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It was a eye opening experience for me, because i know that i will never be able to paint because i do not had talent, or this is what i believed until i discover spray painting.But using this method i was able to produce visually pleasant paintings .I liked the technique and when i returned back in Romania i started learning more about the method and learning how to paint.

Is always good to break your own stereotype, so i decided that i will start learning other people too how to paint using this method. I found this method empowering, i remember when i first learned how to paint and i was wondering, what else i can do, but i am too afraid to try/i know that i cannot do it.

From 2012 until now i had teached over 1000 people how to paint using this method, with participants as young as 3 years old or old as 70+ years old.

I did a workshop for British Council where we had 30 deaf children that learned how to paint using this method. Being a visual method, you can apply this technique in situations where you don`t share a common language.

This methods works also with persons with autism.

2 of my apprentices are still holding workshops and trainings in Bucharest, where they further disseminate this useful and beautiful method.

 

Investigative Journalism

I first discovered investigative journalism when I was at a 3 day training with rise project,as a activist and computer science expert.

Most of the data that the reporters at rise project deal with is received in scanned pdf or in word documents.

      • (Casa journalistului) The journalism house

One of the first task in that I got involved was with a word document 3500 pages long, with the list of all the betting firms in Romania.

From this I had to convert the document into a excel file, using different formulas and custom scripts that I had written.

Out of this resulted a map with all the betting places in Bucharest,crosses referenced with all the public schools in Bucharest, data obtained from openstreetmap.

With this map we were able to show that al least a dozen of the betting places were not respecting the 100 meters distance rule all betting activities have to respect, according to Romanian legislation.

OpenStreetMap

For 5 years i am in charge of developing the worldwide project OpenStreetMap in Romania, via a facebook page that now have over 1300 likes and a facebook group that have over 300 members and active community.

In 2015 i had moved to Cluj-Napoca to work as a Map Analyst for Telenav, a US firm that uses OSM data.

I worked as a consultant for the World Bank, as a OpenStreetMap expert.

Why is so cool OSM ? Because it is Open-Source. We are a community of over 3 million persons from all around the globe that we want to make a free and open source map of the world.

Q: What you can do with it ?

A:  Everything.

You can find out what shop is open at 3 in the morning near you, or what pharmacy you can find open on sunday morning, at 4 am.

Over 650,000 locations have also the accessibility informations, so that if a person that is in a wheelchair want to come to Cluj-Napoca and needs to know exactly n what hotel they should check-in that is accessible for them, they can find out directly from the internet. They can see also where they can find a accessible restaurant for them, a club, etc.

You can try to see how this map looks here : http://osm24.eu/

How did i decided to go to the USA ?

5 Months ago i was at a tech conference in Cluj-Napoca, Romania.

The first speaker at the conference was Tim Draper, a venture capitalist from California that was giving a talk about entrepreneurship.

Besides the talk, at the end he was asked by my boss about Draper University, a non-formal university where you can learn about entrepreneurship in a hands on, applicable way.

When i heard about this, without hesitation i decided to apply.

To present myself i had to make a one minute video about myself.

I found this a difficult task, because i am involved in so many things and having to compress this in under 60 seconds was a daunting task.

With my poorly skills at video editing i was able to crop at this video and try to explain as best as possible what i have done and what i want to do.

No impact project

The motivation of doing my own project started after I was involved in a project in Latvia on the topic of ecology.

There, I was the leader of a group of 4 Romanians, and ended up writing an email to the European Commission because the ngo was embezzling money from European Funds.

And besides, the project was a total failure. The name of the project was green lifestyle, but 3 out of 7 days we were provided home delivered pizza and fast food.

Most of the planned activities ended up not happening.

I returned to my country with the idea of not waiting anymore to write an European training project, which will provide useful and relevant information’s about ecology, how we can reduce our impact on the world.At the time, I wanted  for around a year to write a project, but I was still considering that I don’t have the necessary experience and that I still needed to learn before doing it..

Life advice. Follow your intuition, follow your dreams. Apply to what you want, make concrete steps in the direction that you want, even if you will fail often and hard in the beginning. This is how we learn.

I based the idea of the project around the “no impact project” that a guy from New York started, during which he, his wife and their two children tried to live for one year without consuming the earth resources, or at least to consume at least as possible.

Each of the trainings days were centered around a central topic:

On one day we were learning about consumerism. The participants would end up learning from where they were buying the products whichwe consume and how this is related with human trafficking in east Asia countries.

On another day we would approach the idea of water consumption, hidden water needed for preparing our food, for making our clothes.

The participants learned how to assess the whole life cycle of a product and see the necessary water costs in each step of the process.

The project was held in Cluj-Napoca,Romania and involved 37 participants from 4 European countries.

At the end of the project, we created 200 textile bags out of 60 kilograms of second hand t-shirts and gave them to the participants of a TedX Conference, if they were able to guess how many liters of water you need to make a thirt.

Or how many liters of water you need to make 1 kilogram of beef meat.

After they would have guessed, we explained to them that 30 percent of the world agriculture is used now to feed the cows and livestock that we are afterwards eating. And this is directly collated with the cutting of forestry in the Amazonian forests.

The aim of the project was to teach the participants useful and simple life hacks that they can use to be more sustainable.

Each participant received an aluminum refillable water tank, a Swiss knife with aspoon and fork, that can be useful when you are in the city and you want to eat at a fast food, but you don’t want to have to use the plastic cutlery provided by the fast food joint, because you will waste plastic for a thing that you will only need for 5 minutes.

Consider that this was made in China, from petrol that traveled by sea from middle eastern countries into a Chinese harbor.

From that harbor, the petrol traveled by train to a factory which turned it into plastic,

Then transported by bus from the first factory to another factory which produced plastic forks and spoons..

Transported then from the factory to the harbor.

From the Chinese harbor to the one in Europe, probably Amsterdam or Rotterdam. From there, they are transported again from the harbor to a storage.

From the storage they are transported by bus to Romania to another storage.

From the last storage they are transported to a hipermarket that sells them in bulk quantity to fast food owners.

And then you will take them, use them for 5 minutes and then throw them in the garbage, where they will be transported again for at least 2-3 times.

Really, it is stupid to waste these resources when we can use a metal spoon that you can easily wash and don’t consume resources.

Make a list with all of the things that you grow to the garbage, that you use less then five minutes.

Think of everything from the plastic that you grow after you eat that bag of chips, the plastic cattery, the plastic cups that you use when you go eat at a fast food.

Instead, you can challenge the status qua and ask for juice in your own metal reusable can that you have. Try this as McDonald’s, at kfc, etc

They will not have a valid argument to refuse you. They will even have a bigger profit, because they will remain with the plastic cup.

My solution is that if we want to change something in this world, we have to start with ourself. With the decisions that we take. Or the once that we choose not to do.

I choose to buy my vegetables in textile bags instead of the single use plastic bags that I can get from the supermarket.

I choose to drink tap water or buy a water filter and don’t buy bottled water anymore, and in this way a save plastic.

It’s s more sustainable approach.

Statistics – Ministry of Economy

I wish to continue and enrich the statistics that i started regarding the evolution of the Romanian enterprises from 1990 until 2016.

Now, i was able to use the data provided from data.gov.ro, the open data portal in Romania, which contains only the name of the enterprise, the year when it was created, the county and the city or village where it resides.

What i would need from this statistics is the number of employers for each company, the amount of revenue per each company, and its activity type.  

Until now i was able to produce a 51 page report which you can read here (RO)  http://www.slideshare.net/baditaflorin/imagine-de-ansamblu-asupra-firmelor-din-romania-in-perioada-1990-2015

Statistics – Ministry of Justice

I want to make a statistic about all the court files from 2007-2016, around 20 million court cases, to show the increase in the effectiveness of the justice system from 2007 until present time.

Except that, this research will be useful to journalists, activists, because they will be able to find out how many court files existed each year on a specific topic, the medium time to resolve a dispute.

There are many things that i wish to obtain from this. For example, we can see the differences in the amount of money approved by each of the 240 county courts for a case where the plaintiff had to pay compensation, showing that even if we have the same law, there is uneven practice which varies from county court to county court.

In a similar manner, we can see statistically the average conviction time for the same type of cases. It might be possible for one to get an average of 2 years of jail time for a case regarding stealing without violence, let’s say, based on 1032 court files;if your case were to be tried in Iasi city, the average penalty you risk getting would be 3 years and a half, based on the 425 court files that were related with stealing without doing harm which were trialed in the past in Iasi city.

Statistics

I love statistics, i feel that they can be a useful metric in a world full of irrationality.

You can give 10 examples of people that smoked cigarettes and ended up living 100 years, but if we use a high enough sample, let’s say 500,000 persons, and see the medium lifetime and cause of death, we will get a more realistic view on the damage caused by tobacco.

Photography

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I’ve been passionate about this topic for around 8 years and i held multiple training’s on photography.

For an European training that i held, i developed a peer-learning  method called “PhotoHunt” with the aim of teaching people how to make good photos in an interactive way , and learn from their peers, instead of having to rely on an “expert” who would tell them what they should or should not do.  http://asirys.blogspot.md/2013/12/youth-fotovideotek-post-project-feedback.html

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I prefer to make portrait photos of people when they don`t know that they are being photographed.1398835_515846371847653_453504666_o

When you know that somebody will take a photo of you, in your mind you have a mental process running trying to figure out how to look your best: “Do i look good, i should smile, fuck, now i am smiling too much, now too little, fuck. My hair doesn’t look good, etc” All of these mental processes will make the person look unnatural.

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  I am doing now a experiment where i do B/W photos in clubs, without using the flash, with a tele objective to take long distance photos, so that the end result will be a person in their natural state. You can discover some of the photos i took on this forgotten Facebook page :

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 https://www.facebook.com/Florin-Badita-Photography-347259618706330/