Archives for September 2012

Green Halloween’s National Costume Swap Day Is October 13, 2012.

Four Loko Halloween Costume.Green Halloween’s National Costume Swap Day is one of the best reuse/reduce/recycle events of the year. All you have to do is visit their website and by state, find the closest participating store. Anytime between now and October 13, you can drop in and donate your previously loved Halloween costumes. Each store is offering some type of incentive (goodie bag, discount coupons etc.) for donating your old costumes and you’ll receive a ticket to the costume swap on Saturday, October 13. [National Costume Swap Day via Inhabitots]


Suitable Technologies $16,000 Beam Video Robot Lets A ‘Virtual’ You Lurk Around The Office And Attend Meetings.

Suitable Technologies BeamThe goal of Suitable Technologies $16,000 Beam is to connect people separated by distance. And to Jubbling, cutting back on air travel is a good thing.

But could a robot rolling around a remote office really be that effective? Probably not. Like the other remotely controlled video camera & screen robot, I see the unnecessary Beam getting teased, laughed at and eventually put on a treadmill in the remote office’s supply closet. Just sayin. [Wired]


Studio Weave’s “The Hear Heres” Trumpet Horn Installation Lets People Listen To The Natural World. Will It Be Abused? Likely.

The Hear Heres exhibit from Studio Weave.Anyone who has been to a park with larger-than-life interactive installations knows how much fun they can add to your visit. And “The Hear Heres” display/exhibition, created by British design firm Studio Weave, is no different and encourages visitors to listen to nature. From Inhabitat:

“Three of the exhibition trumpets are directed towards nature, while the fourth relies on human interaction. One horn curves dramatically toward a babbling stream, and another juts out into the calm country sky. One trumpet even wraps itself all the way up a large oak tree, giving visitors the chance to listen in on the rustling branches, chattering squirrels, and singing birds. The most interactive bugle sits on the estate’s great lawn with two giant open ends and a curved arch for the middle for visitors to whisper to one another.”

My kids and I love visiting places that are interactive and more than just open spaces.

But I’m also little embarrassed to admit, from my experience, that kids will always figure out ways to abuse these well intended installations. I hope “The Hear Heres” exhibit doesn’t end up amplifying a sound, from the natural world, we’d just as soon not hear amplified. [Inhabitat]

The Don't of The Hear Heres exhibit.


Bagelheads: A Body Modification That’s A Terrible Waste Of Some Good Salt Water.

BagelheadsBagelheads injecting saline solution into their foreheads.Profiled on the National Geographic show Taboo, the Bagelheads of Japan are part of a growing body modification trend. Not only do these Bagelheads look silly but the saline solution they’re wasting and injecting into their foreheads could’ve been better applied for treating dehydration etc.

Our simple request to the Bagelheads – the next time you want to do this, please freeze the saline solution first (it’ll freeze) and then drop it in its frozen state on your bagel-less heads. Maybe it’ll jar something loose and knock some sense into you. [Laughing Squid]


Mercedes-Benz Aerodynamic Truck And Trailer Looks Great, Consumes Less Fuel And Emits Less CO2.

Mercedes Benz Aerodynamic Truck and TrailerNot only does the prototype Mercedes-Benz Aerodynamic Truck and Trailer look wicked cool but it will also reduce fuel consumption and CO2 emissions. According to an article on Gizmag, the Mercedes-Benz truck/trailer combo will consume 620 gallons less fuel per year compared to a standard big rig.

TrailerTail from ATDynamics w/Jubbling's Mod Suggestion

While you wait, an after market solution for reducing fuel consumption and CO2 emissions is already available from ATDynamics. Their TrailerTail, which reduces low pressure behind the trailer, takes a few hours to be added to existing truck/trailer combos and will save approx 8 gallons of fuel per 1000 miles driven at 65 mph. Add the trailer skirt, which keeps air from hitting the trailer’s rear axles, and the savings could be double. On a rig that travels 100,000/year, the TrailerTail alone will reduce fuel consumption by 800 gallons/year. The savings are not too shabby and should tide you over nicely until your Mercedes-Benz Truck & Trailer arrives.


See-Through Solar Panels / Solar Windows From Sharp.

Sharp Solar Windows.  See-Through Solar Panels.Sharp Corporation is not the first to develop see-through solar panels but with their name recognition and ability to take advantage of economies of scale, hopefully they’ll be the most successful. Sharp’s semi-transparent solar panels are 4.5′ x 3.2′, 0.37-inches thin and have a solar efficiency of 6.8 percent. Their solar efficiency rating is low compared to standard opaque solar panels, that are in the 12-18% range, but these are windows and allow for solar power to be generated where rooftop solar may not be adequate or possible.

In addition to generating electricity, Sharp’s see-through solar panels will absorb a portion of the sunlight before it enters a room and in turn, reduce cooling costs. Now if Sharp can keep the price competitive, they may have a winner. [Crave]