going green

Nokia’s Giant Hamster Wheel at SXSW

Nokia’s Giant Hamster Wheel at SXSW

Nokia has erected a human-sized hamster wheel at SXSW this year, as part of "The Green Zone" at the festival. The wheel can be used for charging any type of mobile device, and will be up through March 20th. It was created by creative agency 1000heads, and inspired by Nokia's campaign "it's not technology, it's what you do with it" from last year (video, complete with hamster, is included below). But our own Vincent Nguyen was not too impressed.

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NYC Leading the Way In Hydrogen Powered Buildings

NYC Leading the Way In Hydrogen Powered Buildings

According to a new report on TreeHugger.com, more hydrogen powered buildings have gone up in New York City since 2005 than anywhere else in the world. These include two of the world's largest hydrogen-powered mixed use buildings, and the first residential hydrogen-powered homes. And a residential building is being planned across the Hudson that will be the largest hydrogen powered residential tower in the world. The cost per square foot is not as high as you might think, so hydrogen power (probably in combination with solar) may become increasingly common.

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Solider in Afghanistan Uses Recycled Materials to Make Awesome Action Figures

Solider in Afghanistan Uses Recycled Materials to Make Awesome Action Figures

PFC Rupert Valero, stationed at Khandahar, Afghanistan, has been using his spare time to build robots and action figures out of found recycled materials. He uses things like bottle caps, microwavable soup containers, yogurt cups, and even Dr. Scholl's foot powder containers to assemble his creations.

In an interview with the blog Another Limited Rebellion, Valero said: "I love to improve 6” super-articulated action figures. I have an engineer’s mentality, so nothing is ever perfect enough. So I am big on tweaking and at time breaking and rebuilding toys. The use of found items is based on what is available to me out here. Slowly, I have amassed more resources like paint and hobby tools. Assemblage has really grown on me to the point I will continue to build from found items." Continue after the cut to see more of his super-fantastic action figures.

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The Umeox Apollo Solar Powered Cell Phone – with Android

The Umeox Apollo Solar Powered Cell Phone – with Android

The latest solar powered cell phone was just announced at Mobile World Congress in Spain, the Umeox Apollo. The phone runs on Android, and would take about 2.5 hours of sunlight for refilling the battery after daily use. This is great news if you want to go camping and not be without your smartphone. The phone is headed for production, but there is no word on when it will actually be available in the US.

The phone could also be great for travelling. But for daily use, leaving your phone out in the sun for 2.5 hours at a time probably isn't realistic. More likely, the phone would charge for 10-15 minutes throughout the day in between uses. In the event the phone goes completely dead, it would take up to 17 hours in the sun to charge it back.

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7-11 Japan Opening 100 Green Stores

7-11 Japan Opening 100 Green Stores

How can 7-11, with its glaring fluorescent lights, coolers, and Slurpee machines go green? Well, they have had success with a pilot program in Japan, and are now expanding it to 100 new stores, as well as renovating 100 existing stores to the new green model.

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Pure Sun Uses Sun’s Rays to Provide Green Light

Pure Sun Uses Sun’s Rays to Provide Green Light

The light itself isn't the color green, but it's certainly less likely to put you in the poorhouse via electricity bills. This is the Pure Sun lamp designed by Denmark-based Igland Design who've billed this object as "a table that doubles as a light source, using only the sun. Well wait a second, couldn't I just open a window? Yes you do have to open a window. Isn't the room then already light? Not if you've got a small window. This seems difficult. It is!

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Electronic Eco-Friendly Rickshaw Designed by Japan Firm

Electronic Eco-Friendly Rickshaw Designed by Japan Firm

I have the distinctive honor of presenting to you the very first post on SlashGear to feature a rickshaw. This rickshaw is both electronic and eco-friendly. This is the Meguru, a three-wheeled, three seat tiny vehicle that's made to go what they call "maximum speed" and range of about 25 miles per hour. Of course that's just with the out-of-the-box build, you can add batteries as you like for a longer ride.

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Self-Powered House Generates Income for You

Self-Powered House Generates Income for You

This is a concept project that's on its way to real reality. I say real reality because not only are there hopes to turn this project into a reality, there's money moving towards that end. In Germany, this "Plus-Energy" house is designed by Institute for Lightweight Structures and Conceptual Design (ILEK), headed by Werner Sobek (who succeeded the great Frei Otto, a master of lightweight structures.) - thanks for the info, TreeHugger. There's a bit of credibility right there that lends itself toward thinking this is a project on its way toward the real world. What is it? Why, it's a square house completely covered in photovoltaic panels and solar thermal systems that generate electricity and hot water.

What else would it be?

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Sony Demonstrates Solar Power Window Panels

Sony Demonstrates Solar Power Window Panels

Take a look at this flower power right here. This is what Sony calls Hana Mado (aka Flower Power), a solar panel that uses screen printed dye to generate custom designs for windows. What's that? windows that double as solar panels? I'll take them all, thank you. Dye-sensitized solar cells (DSSC) in any color combination and design you like. For the demonstration at Eco Products 2010, Sony attached a tiny cute fan to an approximately 10 inch(?) panel that when light was introduced turned, and when light was taken away, stopped. In my walls and in my car next too, please?

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Hybrid Sweet Sweeper Allianz 4000 is World’s First

Hybrid Sweet Sweeper Allianz 4000 is World’s First

Hey world, check it out, time to get green while cleaning up while saving the world. All of these things are the same thing, in a way, and now they're all in the same vehicle. This Allianz 4000 vehicle has a top speed of 60 miles per hour and currently resides in New York City. It has a 6.7-liter Cummings diesel engine and two 12-volt lithium-ion batteries with an electric-traction drive system. How much more efficiently does it run than its non-hybrid counterparts? How does 40-45% fuel savings sound to you?

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