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Computers and Gadgets

Are E-Readers Green Readers?

book and e-readerJust when I thought it was safe to love technology, now this. Recent articles show that using e-readers (like Kindles or iPads) may harm the environment more than reading paper books. Since I fancy myself as a green consumer I did some eco-bean counting (better known as calculating your environmental footprint) to see whether I’d go green or brown if I bought an e-reader.... read more

Solar Powered What?!?! 10 strange gizmos from bikinis to soccer balls...

Recently I have been doing a lot of research on all stuff solar – especially solar power for homes/businesses and solar water heating. But there are lots of products out there that don't require a major purchase in order to reduce your CO2 emissions. Some of them are a bit strange, but hey, I'll take it!

1. Solar Powered Bikini – Don't you hate it when your iPod and laptop run out of power at the beach? Dilemma solved. Student Andrew Schnieder designed the solar powered bikini with 1 USB input... just avoid the water.... read more

Which is the greenest game console? Now "Wii" know the answer!

wii greenest console

The Electric Power Research Institute (EPRI) recently tested three of the most popular video game consoles to see which uses the least energy while in active mode.  

The contenders?  Nintendo Wii, Sony PlayStation 3, and Microsoft Xbox 360.  

The winner?  Wii.  By a landslide.... read more

Verizon Wireless’ Entry into Home Energy Management


Verizon Wireless had a coming out party at CES 2011 for their new Home Monitoring and Control service.  One of the applications included in the service will be home energy management.  However, the intent is to offer complete home control and monitoring including lights, locks, webcams, security, home health, and of course thermostats and energy usage.  One of the unique killer apps is the ability to view streaming webcam content from Verizon Wireless LTE-enabled handsets.... read more

The iPad is Hot-- is it Green, Too?

iPadiPadA survey by research firm Nielsen suggests that Apple's iPad is the number one item kids aged 6 to 12 are wishing for this holiday. 31 percent of kids in this age group are wishing for the device, compared with 18 percent of kids 13 and older.

... read more

Sustainable intelligent solutions at IBM

Smarter Buildings: Courtesy of IBMSmarter Buildings: Courtesy of IBM

Many leaders from various industries and geographies indicate that the emerging sustainable economy will be the biggest economic game changer in the next two decades. At West Coast Green conference in San Francisco last week, IBM Corporation announced new Smart Energy-Management and Sustainability Solutions for the enterprise.

The new technological offerings address energy efficiency and sustainable buildings in commercial settings and are part of IBM’s expanding collection of solutions that are designed for creating smarter urban infrastructures.... read more

Ten Green Android Apps

Did you know that you can use your cell phone to help you keep your lifestyle green?  Many phones now have "green" applications.  I have a Droid, so I'm going to focus on that.   More and more green apps are popping up for the Droid!  

Here are 10 Droid apps to help you maintain your eco-friendly lifestyle:... read more

  • Green Tips - Get green living tips on your phone.  A lot of them are ones you may already know, but sometimes it's good to have a reminder.
  • Eco Charger - The Eco Charger app lets you know when your phone is done charging, so you can unplug it and refrain from using unneeded electricity. 
  • IAmGreen - This app helps reduce how much power you waste your phone.  A tree is also planted whenever this app is downloaded!  

Smart Grid event - Future metering devices

The current metering devices for generating, transmitting and distributing electrical informationr are vulnerable to failure. The need to revamp this outdated technology is apparent, especially in an age of renewable energy. Original image from freefoto.comOriginal image from freefoto.comThe smart grid creates opportunities beyond new meter devices and simple data collection.

... read more

Green Book Club

Green Book Clubs

There has been some discussion of using ‘Green” books like the kindle or using the local library.  I have another perspective and that is the green book club. I think discussion with others is a great way to expand your knowledge of topics.   To help people better understand or to just grow in appreciation for the environment I would suggest a book club.  Instead of discussing the most recent fiction best seller why don’t we concentrate on sharing the knowledge of the world around us with our friends and neighbors and talk about a real life issue?

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Be a Greener Reader

Since childhood, one of my favorite activities has always been reading, and a quick glance around my house proves it. I'll be the first to admit it: I'm a book junkie. I have at least one book I'm currently reading in each room of my house, and my Sunday afternoon library trip is one of my favorite times of the week. The problem, though, is books are not the most green of habits, especially if you purchase your own books and only read them once. However, there are plenty of ways to be a greener reader. ... read more

  • Utilize your public library system. can help you locate a library anywhere in the U.S. (including Presidential libraries) and also has a neat forum to give authors a chance to share their books with potential readers. 
  • Donate to and purchase from local book fairs. Most of the larger ones in your area will be well advertised in local news media, but you can also find one here, if you're in the U.S. or Canada. Note that, due to the enormous task of sorting all the books before a sale, most fairs stop taking donations about a month ahead of time, so check before you donate.
  • Use websites developed for book sharing. There are dozens of them out there, but my favorite is Used BooksUsed Books
  • Buy an ereader. The two most successful are the Amazon Kindle and the Barnes & Noble Nook. While ereaders are a hefty investment up front (find them used and save some money--I got mine from craigslist), they have the potential to save you a lot of money over time, since you can get newspaper and magazine subscriptions on them (cheaper and greener than the paper versions) as well as purchasing books at a considerable discount. And most of the classics are free via sites like Project Gutenberg. 
  • Download audiobooks. Personally, I like to actually READ a book, but I swear by audiobooks for car trips or the occasional workout.
  • Have a creative side? Get artsy with old books here. 
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