Students for a Smarter Planet ..leaders with conscience
Environmental

Are you wondering what to do with your spare time?  Re-runs on TV got you bored to tears?  Played a little too much “Candy Crush” and finding your teeth aching from a sugar overdose?  Make use of your extra hours and CODE!!

There are so many ways to contribute to the technology revolution taking place all around us – if you love the nitty-gritty details that make stuff work, this is a chance for you to be a player…click the logo for more info!!

code for america

They work with a host of governmental agencies in Partnerships!

And check out the details on their Summit to be held in September in Oakland, California -   code for america summit

There’s local Hack Events, too, for all you ‘geeks’ – maybe one in your neighborhood?

Put YOUR smarts to work – and maybe find yourself a job that you’ll love in the process!!!

Bookmark and Share
August 30th, 2015
5:48
 

When I read about recycled plastic roads, it sounded like a great idea to me!  Plastic doesn’t immediately jump to mind when you think about going green, but here we are talking about recycling plastic which litters our oceans.  It seems to be a very good incentive to clean up our waterways as well as find a home for this traditional blight on our oceans.

VolkerWessels has quite a few interesting projects underway, including recycled plastic roadways which is in the conceptual stage.

The plan promises a lightweight design, a fraction of the construction time, virtually maintenance free, and three times the expected lifespan of the road.

Check out this video that has interesting narration which describes it in more detail:

YouTube Preview Image

In a similar video, you can see how India is also incorporating what used to be nuisance plastic into their roadways:

YouTube Preview Image

Do you know of any adaptations to further this cause?

 

Bookmark and Share

Discovery, exploration, challenges and breakthroughs.  All these elements are part of the continuous changes that take place in the technology landscape around us.  To keep pace and bring us into the future, a new generation of curious minds must be engaged.  Governments and educational institutions across the globe are intent on making that happen!

Read about this program in Africa that seeks to tap into the wonderful reserves of ‘imagination’ within their people…

Botswana Ministry introduces e-nnovation

“Botswana’s Ministry of Youth, Sport and Culture (MYSC) is developing ways of getting the local youth to chart the technology waters by coming up with programmes that allow them to be innovative for the benefit of the nation”

 

And here is the link to the detail page for applications and funding:

Botswana e-nnovation Youth

Empowerment Programme (eYEP)

Opportunities for Africans

There are programs of this sort to be found in all corners of the world – seek out similar opportunities in your area…  Your drive and talent are needed!

Bookmark and Share

We frequently hear that eating fish is a healthy thing to do, because it’s full of beneficial long chain fatty acids. Unfortunately, the Western diet tends to be short on fish and bigger on beef, which contains short chain fatty acids that aren’t quite so good for us. Chinese scientists are creating a work-around, however – genetically-engineered beef that’s high in the “good” fatty acids.

blog cowfish

This cowfish is here to make this a colorful blog post

Fish is a prime source of long chain n-3 polyunsaturated fatty acids, more commonly known as omega-3 oils, which help protect against obesity, cardiovascular disease and neurodegenerative disorders. The short chain fatty acids in beef are known as n-6.

In order to turn n-6 into n-3, a research team from China’s Northwest A and F University, and National Beef Cattle Improvement Centre, first isolated the fat1 gene from a nematode worm. That gene codes for desaturase enzymes, which play a key role in converting n-6 fatty acids to n-3.

While the research is still ongoing, I wonder how many of us would want to take the plunge and eat this new type of beef.

I guess we could order our “omega-burger” at McDonald’s golden arches and feel that we are eating healthier at least.

 

Bookmark and Share
August 27th, 2015
5:14
 

In the “early days” of architectural design, buildings boasted quite small windows to allow for ventilation.  These smaller apertures served the purpose of keeping buildings more snug in the winters, too.  (Tiny openings were also a good deterrent against attacking marauders with their arrows, bullets, and the like.)  Glass was an expensive product, and was generally a sign of the level of wealth of the building owner/occupant.

Photo credit: http://www.benhammott.com

 

My, how times have changed!  Most of the buildings constructed in the 20th century boast glass from top to bottom – and we’ve started to make some big changes in the 21st century, too!

Researchers at the Cockrell School of Engineering at The University of Texas at Austin are one step closer to delivering smart windows that have a new level of energy efficiency. Their research has created new materials that allow windows to transmit light without transferring heat, or conversely to block light while allowing heat transmission.  The materials are controlled by a small voltage applied by the building occupants.

University of Texas Develops

 

More Energy Efficient Window

 

 “We believe our deliberately crafted nanocrystal-based materials could meet the performance and cost targets needed to progress toward commercialization of smart windows,” says engineering professor, Delia Milliron.

 

Green building is a burgeoning field – how will you contribute??

(…and, as a bonus, if you click on the picture above, you can read a fascinating story about Château de Cazemajou in Montazels and the mystery surrounding its priest. I love these speculative reconstructions of lifetimes past.  There are some fabulous architectural photos to enjoy on the site as well…)

 

Bookmark and Share

Subscribe to this category Subscribe to Environmental

 
ChatClick here to chat!+