May 15, 2013 » Fully Human-Powered (Concept) Home
Artists at the Spanish firm Elli have designed a truly human-powered home. This small abode with translucent walls would challenge residents to use their muscles to operate its appliances, lights, and greenhouse hoses.
According to an article in co.EXIST, "The JF-Kit House [named after Jane Fonda]... is an experiment in 'domestic fitness,' rendering 'the image of a possible future where citizens produce part of their domestic energy requirements with their own physical activities.' Each room features a fancifully named exercise station that would, theoretically, help create energy to power the home, including an 'arm workout bureau,' a 'spinning kitchen,' and a 'triceps greenhouse.'"
The JF-Kit House has been installed on a Brussels roof as a prototype. Less practical than artistic, it's a designer's challenge to reconsider domestic habits and what role our bodies and muscles can play in maintaining sustainable living spaces.
More photos here and more background info here.
Read More » By: tamaraApril 25, 2013 » Presidential Pedal Power This Monday President Obama invited young inventors to the White House to show off their inventions at the annual White House Science Fair (see articles in The Miami Herald and The New York Times). Payton Kaar and Kiona Elliott, two young women from Northeast High School in Broward County, Florida, brought their pedal-powered water filtration system. They convinced the president to pedal for a few minutes, as shown here (he hops on the bike around 6 min., 30 sec.) and provided a great explanation of how the filtration system worked. Obama pronounced the invention "Outstanding." Congratulations Payton and Kiona!
Read More » By: tamaraApril 25, 2013 » Pedal-power Inventor Matthew Corson-Finnerty An episode of Peak Moment TV released late last year features Matthew Corson-Finnerty, pedal-power inventor. Watch the video for a great overview of several human-powered devices, including a bike blender, water pump, grain mill, electricity generator, and a very ingenious straw chopper. (See also The Human-Powered Home for plans on building your own human-powered blender, mill, generator, and pump.) Corson-Finnerty apprenticed with Maya Pedal and now works for Aprovecho in Oregon. He also posts notes from his various home experiments on his blog. Thanks, Matthew, for continuing to innovate and explain pedal-powered machines!
Read More » By: tamaraApril 14, 2013 » Bike Blenders and Chocolate Readers of The Human-Powered Home are probably familiar with pedal-powered blenders. This weekend I spoke about human power at an area alternative energy and green home show, and my friend Lynn was kind enough to join me and demonstrate her bike blender (a Rock the Bike model). Lynn studied with Michael Sacco at ChocoSol as part of establishing her own human-powered, socially-conscious artisan chocolate business. (She and I will be rigging up a pedal-powered cacao cracker in the coming months.) Here she is making kale and blueberry smoothies -- sadly, chocolate wasn't available -- for the crowd to show how the bike blender works. Thanks to Wendy for helping out!
Read More » By: tamaraApril 14, 2013 » Human Power Harnessed During Paris Marathon The human power of thousands was harnessed at the April 7th Schneider Electric Paris Marathon. Tiles made by Pavegen placed along certain portions of the route converted runners' and spectators' footfalls to electricity. According to this article in Energy Harvesting Journal, "The Pavegen tiles flex 5mm when stepped on, converting up to 8 watts of kinetic energy over the duration of the footstep, i.e. 8 joules." The total amount of electricity generated during the race has not been revealed yet.
Read More » By: tamaraJune 7, 2012 » Walking Power The Human-Powered Home describes the heel-strike generator, which was developed with funding from the U.S. Department of Defense as a way of harvesting energy from walking. Since the book was published, examples of collecting power from walking or running have multiplied. Most recently, Kenyan entrepreneur Anthony Mutua, unveiled an ultrathin chip that can be inserted into any shoe and used to charge a cell phone, either on the go or after a run or walk. Meanwhile, the military continues to pursue ways for soldiers to charge small electronics on the go. A recent example is SPaRK (Soldier Power Regeneration Kit) from SpringActive, Inc., which the manufacture claims can generate 3-6 watts of (continuous) power per leg while walking at 3 mph.
Read More » By: tamaraNovember 8, 2011 » Occupy Movement Is Human Powered After NYPD seized fossil- and bio-fuel generators from Occupy Wall Street protesters, they turned to pedal power to keep laptops, phones, and cameras functioning. Environmental advocacy group Times Up! helped set up the generators. According to one article, it would take 11 pedal-powered electrical generators to meet the New York group's needs. Meanwhile, protesters in San Francisco are also generating their own electricity with help from Rock the Bike. Check out more articles on the use of human power in the Occupy movement here and here, with videos here and here.
Read More » By: tamaraJuly 5, 2011 » Human-Powered Gyms Update Read a good overview of the state of human-powered exercise machines in gyms in IEEE's latest Spectrum. The article refers to some of the inventors and businesses featured on this site, including Mike Taggett, the Green Revolution, ReRev, and the Green Microgym. Like The Human-Powered Home, it points out the relatively low capacity of human power compared to other energy sources -- and explains that human power is not economical. But most of us aren't doing it to save money on electric bills. At least, not yet.
Read More » By: tamaraMay 10, 2011 » Powered By the People Check out Powered By the People in Alberta, CA, an organization devoted to engaging people in "bicycle culture and alternative energy though small actions that cumulatively create great change." This Saturday, May 14th, they're hosting a Pink and Green Pedal Power event in Canmore, Alberta. Visitors will have the opportunity to try bike blenders and pedal-powered generators.
Read More » By: tamaraApril 11, 2011 » Wearable Generators Thanks to a fan for pointing me to this article about researchers at the University of Auckland who are experimenting with dielectric elastomers to make wearable generators. From the article: "In a paper in Applied Physics Letters this week, the Auckland researchers described building a 110-millimetre-wide, plunger-shaped generator capable of producing 10 milliwatts of power." Dielectric elastomers can be used in generators because the material induces a slight current differential each time it's compressed. The Auckland scientists' approach is similar to what the U.S. military pursued in its now-abandoned energy harvesting boot (as described in The Human-Powered Home), but they're aiming for something more flexible, lightweight, inexpensive, and probably better suited to the consumer market.
Read More » By: tamaraApril 4, 2011 » Sustainable Sound Featured on NPR A friend alerted me to this story on WBUR's "Here and Now" of a rock band touring with what they call Sustainable Sound--a pedal-powered audio and lighting system for their performances. It's the creation of 32-year-old inventor Sean Stevens, who recently organized a demo concert at Landry’s Bicycles in Boston. Check out the link for photos of Stevens's DIY human-powered generator in action. In the book and on this blog I've featured other groups that pedal-power sound systems. One notable for its sophisticated and portable setup is Rock the Bike.
Read More » By: tamaraMarch 26, 2011 » Pedal-Powered Cacao Winnower Michael Sacco, of ChocoSol, has continued inventing human-powered machines since I interviewed him for The Human-Powered Home a few years ago. His latest design: a pedal-powered cacao bean sheller and winnower. View a video of the machine in action here ... where you can also donate to help ChocoSol build winnowers and solar roasters for its off-grid chocolate factory in Toronto and its sister business in Oaxaca, Mexico.
Read More » By: tamaraMarch 3, 2011 » New Human Power Book Arjen Jansen has conducted years of research on using muscles to power consumer devices at the Delft University of Technology. His PhD thesis is now available as a book, Human Power empirically explored.
Read More » By: tamaraMarch 3, 2011 » Congratulations, David Butcher! While writing The Human-Powered Home I was privileged to meet and talk with dozens of people who were passionate about pedal power. David Butcher was one of my favorite interviewees. He happily shared his ideas and accompanied me on presentations when I was in the Bay Area. His energy and good cheer are infectious. And David truly lives what he preaches as he human-powers several electrical and mechanical devices in his home. Every day! On Valentine's Day he reached a milestone: he generated his 100,000th watt-hour of pedal-powered energy during his morning exercise. Read more about his accomplishments here. Congratulations, David, and thank you for inspiring us all!
Read More » By: tamaraJanuary 16, 2011 » WBC in Home Power Magazine A great little article about Chicago's Working Bikes Cooperative appears here in the Dec-Jan issue of Home Power magazine.
Read More » By: tamaraDecember 5, 2010 » Pedal-Powered Kitchen Center Many human power enthusiasts (including authors of the 1977 book Pedal Power: in Work, Leisure, and Transportation) have dreamed of an all-purpose pedal-powered kitchen center that allows you to run multiple gadgets from the same drive. German designer Christopher Thetard has released just such a thing, called the R2B2 -- and it's not only functional, but also beautiful.
Read More » By: tamaraNovember 21, 2010 » Checking in with Jock Brandis Three years ago, when I spoke with Jock Brandis of the Full Belly Project about his Universal Peanut Sheller, he had recently fine-tuned the pedal-powered (or hand-cranked) device and delivered it to agricultural villages in six countries. A recent NPR piece reports that the sheller is now changing lives in 17 countries. "Villagers with their own sheller go from subsistence farmers dependent on middlemen to independent business people." Brandis is also developing a small-scale, hand-powered water pump. As featured in The Human-Powered Home, Kickstart.org is another organization helping farmers in developing countries increase their incomes through human-powered water pumps.
Read More » By: tamaraNovember 21, 2010 » Would the Amish Use a Hand-Cranked Laptop? In this article in The Atlantic (November 1, 2010) author Rebecca Greenfield wonders whether the Amish would use the One Laptop Per Child hand-cranked computer (featured in The Human-Powered Home), since it doesn't rely on the grid for electricity.
Read More » By: tamaraAugust 30, 2010 » DIY Help from Working Bikes I've had the pleasure of working with the volunteers at Chicago's Working Bikes Cooperative (WBC), an organization that collects cast-off bikes and repairs or refashions them for use in the city or in far-off countries. They also make bike machines, such as pedal generators and water pumps, for education, fun, and practical use. (And they're featured in The Human-Powered Home.) WBC recently posted instructions for making devices they debuted at the Midwest Renewable Energy Fair this summer. Another WBC page lists instructions and videos for making a wide variety of pedal-powered devices.
Read More » By: tamaraJuly 5, 2010 » Green Gym in Detroit In January, Treehugger profiled a gym in Detroit that's available for use by the homeless and has electricity-generating equipment. According to Cass Community Social Services, "The gym will be open daily for homeless people living in the CCSS's transitional housing and permanent supportive housing programs, as well as staff members and volunteers." The gym uses energy-harvesting stationary bikes made by Green Revolution.
Read More » By: tamaraJuly 5, 2010 » Electricity-Generating Shoe In The Human-Powered Home I wrote about the heel-strike generator, the boot heel embedded with a material that issued current when compressed--current that could be harnessed to power batteries for portable electronics. The U.S. Military (DARPA) chose not to pursue the technology after testing showed that wearing it and generating electricity all day taxed test subjects. Now Dr. Ville Kaajakari, an assistant professor at Louisiana Tech, has come up with a similar electricity-generating shoe that he claims will work better.
Read More » By: tamaraMay 25, 2010 » Power from Clothing Scientists are getting closer to making fashion that harvests human energy. This article in the Chicago Tribune describes UC-Berkeley professor Luwei Lin's project to develop nanofibers that can be woven into clothing and generate electricity from the wearer's smallest movements. These nanofibers, which make use of piezoelectricity, can be washed multiple times and not lose their energy-harvesting capabilities.
Read More » By: tamaraApril 22, 2010 » Pedal for Dinner Recently a few articles (here and here) have described a scheme being rolled out by one Danish hotel to allow diners to pedal for dinner. The Crowne Plaza Copenhagen Towers will offer anyone who produces at least 10 watt-hours of electricity on one of its stationary bike generators a voucher for a free meal. Crowne Plaza's parent company, IHG, said there are no plans to bring the program to hotels in the U.S.
Read More » By: tamaraApril 15, 2010 » Rustic Pedal Powered Generator This post about a homemade bicycle generator begins: "Living in the woods there are no convenient plug sockets." And yet laptops are still necessary tools. Authors of the blog A Walk Around Britain have created a simple bicycle-powered electrical generator using the same parts as those described in The Human-Powered Home's plan for a homemade bicycle generator--scooter motor, pulley, cog, and an old car battery. Except that this ingenious, rustic generator uses a stand made of sticks!
Read More » By: tamaraApril 15, 2010 » Inmates Pedal Power TVs According to an article in The Arizona Republic, inmates at one AZ correctional facility can pedal power TVs to view additional channels. Maricopa County Sheriff Joe Arpaio said he hopes to encourage more exercise with this setup, in which one hour of pedaling allows for one hour of viewing. Oddly, the program is only available to female inmates at this time.
Read More » By: tamaraMarch 8, 2010 » The Latest Example of Passively Harvesting Human Power A new development in passively harvesting human power was featured in a recent NY Times article. Using piezoelectric crystals to generate electricity from human movement isn't a novel idea. Its varied applications are described in Chapter 1 of The Human-Powered Home. But now scientists at Princeton have printed the crystals onto a flexible rubberlike material that's also biocompatible, so it can be implanted in the body. As you move, the material could generate enough electricity to run a medical sensor. Outside of the body--for example, embedded in clothing--a flexible generator could charge your cell phone or portable music player.
Read More » By: tamaraMarch 8, 2010 » RollerGen, One of the Coolest Greener Gadget Designs The RollerGen, a bicycle-attached electrical generator, was recently named in a Popular Mechanics article as one of the four coolest designs in the Greener Gadgets 2010 conference. RollerGen has been featured on this site before, and High Tide Associates, the company that designed and manufactures the device, is featured in The Human-Powered Home.
Read More » By: tamaraFebruary 19, 2010 » New Maya Pedal Site If you've read The Human-Powered Home or followed pedal-power technology a while, you probably know about Maya Pedal. This Guatemalan organization is a model for collaborative, innovative human power engineering. Now Maya Pedal has updated its Web site to include easier navigation, more photos, and best of all, detailed plans and drawings of its most popular pedal-powered machines (bicimaquinas). Through the new site you can also donate or apply to visit and help out.
Read More » By: tamaraJanuary 29, 2010 » Lifeline Radios for Haiti The Freeplay Foundation, which makes the wind-up Lifeline radios featured in The Human-Powered Home, is sending their radios to Haiti's earthquake survivors. Radios are a vital source of information about obtaining food, water, and medical aid, and of course, the wind-up radios need no electricity. Read more and help send these radios to Haitian survivors.
Read More » By: tamaraJanuary 29, 2010 » Pull-cord Generators When researching The Human-Powered Home I talked with the engineers at Potenco about their pull-cord generator, which was in development for the One Laptop Per Child program. Although they were also working on a device for consumer use, that apparently didn't pan out. Recently, however The New York Times featured a story on a new pull-cord generator, the YoGen, from Easy Energy, Inc.
Read More » By: tamaraDecember 19, 2009 » Copenhagen’s Pedal-powered Christmas Tree Lights Copenhagen has dominated the environmental news this week, but you might have missed this story about its pedal-powered Christmas tree lights. The setup allows for 15-20 volunteers to pedal stationary bikes that light the tree. (At night or at other times pedalers aren't working, wind power lights the tree.)
Read More » By: tamaraDecember 9, 2009 » Bike Blender at Climate Conference A bike blender makes an appearance in The New York Times's coverage of Day 2 of the Climate Conference in Copenhagen!
Read More » By: tamaraDecember 9, 2009 » Another Pedal-Powered Charger This USB-compatible charger for iPods, cell phones, and other mobile electronic devices, is forthcoming from Dahon, a company better known for its folding bikes. Called the BioLogic Freecharge, the charger attaches to a hub dynamo and juices a battery that then charges your device. Reports indicate it will be available in March 2010 and cost around $99.
Read More » By: tamaraNovember 23, 2009 » Bicycling Magazine Article Examines Human Power In an article in this month's Bicycling Magazine, Bob Parks presents an overview of people-powered electrical generation and mentions The Human-Powered Home. Especially interesting is the story of Hudson Harr, founder of ReRev, which has already put human power-harnessing equipment in more than a dozen U.S. gyms.
Read More » By: tamaraNovember 23, 2009 » Testing Human Power I'm often asked, "How much electricity can a person generate?" and the short answer is always, "It depends." The long answer requires a little experimentation. David Butcher, seasoned human-power inventor, has been in the laboratory with some UMass-Boston students putting that question to the test. Check out his testing protocols and the resulting data.
Read More » By: tamaraNovember 10, 2009 » NPR Covers Human Power Again Yesterday's "All Things Considered" featured a story about Tremont Electric's Personal Energy Generator (PEG). It's a device that captures the energy from walking and uses it to charge portable electronic devices.
Read More » By: tamaraNovember 10, 2009 » Human Power as Anarchy Seen at St. Mark's Bookshop in New York, The Human-Powered Home shelved under "Anarchism":
Read More » By: tamaraSeptember 29, 2009 » RollerGen from High Tide Associates High Tide Associates has just released the RollerGen, a human-powered electrical generator that attaches to your bike. Unlike other commercially available pedal-powered generators, it allows you to charge a battery pack for any USB-compatible consumer electronic device while you ride.
Read More » By: tamaraSeptember 29, 2009 » Bike Blender Blog Recently I spoke at an energy fair sponsored by the MidAtlantic Renewable Energy Association (MAREA) in Kutztown, PA. It was a lovely event with wonderful crowds. One of the audience members told me her son (who's a fan of The Human-Powered Home) had been working with Maya Pedal for some time, designing and building bike-powered machines. And he's kept a great blog about his experiences.
Read More » By: tamaraSeptember 7, 2009 » NPR Considers Human Power A while back Jennifer Sharpe, an NPR producer, contacted me about putting together an "All Things Considered" segment on human power. I directed her to some of my favorite human-power inventors I'd discovered while researching The Human-Powered Home. Jennifer visited with them and found them just as engaging and entertaining as I had. Today, they'll appear on NPR's "All Things Considered." And Jennifer's quirky sensibility and enthusiasm for human power will surely make the piece memorable. You can find out when the show airs in your area by checking the ATC schedule. If you miss hearing it on the air today, it'll be available online starting tomorrow.
Read More » By: tamaraAugust 11, 2009 » ReRev Brings Human Power to Campus A lot of people ask about harnessing human power in fitness centers, and there are some gyms, like Portland's Green Microgym, that do that. Newer on the scene is ReRev, a company based in Florida that provides gyms with cardio equipment, including elliptical machines, to capture human power.
Read More » By: tamaraAugust 11, 2009 » MNN Features The Human-Powered Home Months ago, journalist Marcia Walton from Mother Nature Network (MNN) interviewed me about The Human-Powered Home. Her article and review of the book recently appeared here on MNN's site.
Read More » By: tamaraJuly 29, 2009 » “This Way Up” Features Human Power The Radio New Zealand National program "This Way Up" featured human power, including an interview with me about halfway in, on its Saturday, July 25th broadcast.
Read More » By: tamaraJuly 29, 2009 » Pedal-powered hammer David Butcher, a California inventor who's long been on the cutting edge of pedal-power innovation, has come up with a new, original contraption, a pedal-powered hammer.
Read More » By: tamaraJune 16, 2009 » Join Me at MREA This weekend I'll be selling & signing books and demonstrating bike machines with the folks from Chicago's Working Bikes Cooperative at the MREA Energy Fair in Custer, WI. You'll find us in exhibit location CS4. The energy fair is always good fun, a huge gathering of friendly people sharing progressive ideas and curious inventions.
Read More » By: tamaraJune 15, 2009 » Yes! Magazine Review The just-released summer issue of Yes! Magazine gives The Human-Powered Home a favorable review.
Read More » By: tamaraMay 31, 2009 » Multi-person Pedal-powered Generator from Rock the Bike The good folks at Rock the Bike, who sell a slick bicycle blender, have come up with another great pedal-powered invention from their shop in Berkeley, CA. The Biker Bar is a pedal-powered electrical generator that allows for up to 4 pedalers to combine their output. Not only that, but the whole setup can be torn down, packed up, and transported by bike.
Read More » By: tamaraMay 21, 2009 » Is Human Power Potential All in Your Head? While researching The Human-Powered Home I interviewed exercise physiologists to learn how the average person could maximize his or her power generation potential (pages 65 - 69). Experts recommended strength training, cardiovascular training, staying cool and hydrated, optimizing your pace, and relying on your legs. (Being younger than 40 also helps.) Only one of the people I interviewed mentioned attitude. Now an article in the recent issue of Seed suggests that attitude might trump training when it comes to maximizing your output.
Read More » By: tamaraApril 23, 2009 » Operation Adaptation Another opportunity to try pedal power will happen this Friday and Saturday, April 24-25, in Sullivan, Wisconsin. Operation Adaptation is hosting an environmentally friendly music festival, complete with an entire sound stage (lights, instruments, and p.a.) powered by eight stationary bikes, courtesy of Milwaukee's Power by the People. Festival goers are welcome to make a muscle-power contribution or just sit back and listen.
Read More » By: tamaraApril 20, 2009 » Rock the Bike NYC Rock the Bike NYC will be pedal powering an Earth Day concert in Central Park, Sunday, April 26.
Read More » By: tamaraApril 16, 2009 » Global Cycle Solutions MIT students associated with the university's D-Lab and experienced with human-powered machine development have formed Global Cycle Solutions. This organization focuses on improving and bringing novel, small-scale technology to developing countries. One of its most innovative designs is the mobile maize sheller.
Read More » By: tamaraApril 15, 2009 » Review From Richard Ballantine Richard Ballantine, noted bicycling author, advocate, and practitioner, has reviewed The Human-Powered Home for the journal of the British Human Power Club (BHPC). He writes "This excellent book will interest anyone who enjoys playing with human-powered machines."
Read More » By: tamaraMarch 24, 2009 » Volunteer to Pedal Power This Saturday, March 28th, Broadway in Chicago is participating in Earth Hour and needs more pedalers to keep a human-powered marquee lit. Sign up here to power one of the ten bike generators that'll be set up in front of Chicago's historic Oriental Theatre.
Read More » By: tamaraMarch 23, 2009 » Interview with Mike Taggett Late in the process of writing The Human-Powered Home I learned about Mike Taggett. Mike created the Human Dynamo and Team Dynamo exercise machines that generate electricity at the Green Microgym in Portland. Unfortunately, by the time someone slipped me his name my manuscript deadline was looming (okay, had passed) and it was too late to interview him. Still, I wanted to know more about Mike and his creations. He and I finally talked this weekend.
Read More » By: tamaraFebruary 19, 2009 » Marketplace mentions pedal-powered washer In its February 18, 2009 show, American Public Media's "Marketplace" mentioned the pedal-powered washing machine featured in The Human-Powered Home that students at MIT have been working on for years. (It's also known by Maya Pedal volunteers and customers as the bicilavadora.)
Read More » By: tamaraFebruary 16, 2009 » New Review The March-April 2009 issue of BackHome magazine gives The Human-Powered Home a glowing review and also includes an article about a pedal-powered water pump. Subscription is required to read the issue, but following is a quote from the review:
Read More » By: tamaraJanuary 20, 2009 » Reader, Cultivation Katie, an industrious reader of The Human-Powered Home, recently told me she's making a bike-frame cultivator from the plans in the book. She chronicles her beginning in this post on her blog, Little Farm in the Townie (which is interesting reading for anyone pursuing a more earth-friendly and self-sufficient lifestyle). Thanks, Katie!
Read More » By: tamaraJanuary 20, 2009 » Bike-powered Christmas tree lights In Barcelona last month, the Christmas tree in the square of Mercat Santa Catarina was lit with LEDs that were human-powered.
Read More » By: tamaraDecember 1, 2008 » Pedal-powered call centers Check out Llamadas Pedaleadas, which brings mobile, pedal-powered call centers to villages in Nicaragua.
Read More » By: tamaraNovember 17, 2008 » Momentum magazine’s review The November 2008 issue of Momentum (the magazine for self-propelled people) includes a review of The Human-Powered Home, written by Joel Gillespie.
Read More » By: tamaraNovember 13, 2008 » Pedal power article in CS Monitor An excellent article by Vijaysree Ventkatraman in today's Christian Science Monitor highlights the increasing popularity of attaching electrical generators to exercise equipment in gyms.
Read More » By: tamaraNovember 6, 2008 » Pedal-Powered Apple Grinder v.2 Ben Polito of Five Islands Orchards in Maine devised a pedal-powered apple grinder for use in cider making, as featured in The Human-Powered Home. This fall he and his friends improved the grinder, and Ben writes that it "works like a bloody charm."
Read More » By: tamaraOctober 27, 2008 » Blogger Reviews Hand-Cranked Blender Blogger Chile at Chile Chews has just published an in-depth review of the Vortex hand-cranked blender -- and it's not an endorsement.
Read More » By: tamaraOctober 27, 2008 » Rotterdam’s Human-Powered Dance Club Another club with a piezoelectric floor that allows dancers to power the light show was in the news last week...
Read More » By: tamaraOctober 9, 2008 » Science Chicago’s Pedal-Powered Sound System City officials in Chicago launched Science Chicago, a year-long program they're calling “the world's largest science celebration” on September 16th. The sound system for the kickoff was pedal-powered, thanks to Chicago's Working Bikes cooperative.
Read More » By: tamaraOctober 9, 2008 » Spinning Wheels Power Lights In the first chapter of The Human-Powered Home, I mention Gandhi's call to Indian citizens to rely on local, appropriate technology. He said, “The traditional old implements, the plough, the spinning wheel, have made our wisdom and our welfare.” Now the spinning wheel, one of Gandhi's symbols of self-reliance, has been transformed into a human-powered electrical generator.
Read More » By: tamaraSeptember 1, 2008 » Book Tour The Human-Powered Home book events have been finalized. Catch the presentation and see demonstrations of human-powered devices in a city near you.
Read More » By: jonahcoyoteAugust 25, 2008 » Green Microgym Harnesses Human Power An article in the LA Times highlights Portland, Oregon's Green Microgym, where clients exercise on spin bikes attached to electrical generators.
Read More » By: tamaraAugust 23, 2008 » San Francisco Chronicle Article on David Butcher David Butcher, one of the inventors featured in The Human-Powered Home, is the subject of an article in today's San Francisco Chronicle.
Read More » By: jonahcoyoteAugust 8, 2008 » Human-Powered Dance Floor A London entertainment writer tries out a human-powered dance floor at the city's new eco-friendly disco, Surya.
Read More » By: jonahcoyoteJune 24, 2008 » Armband Mobile Phone Charger Orange, a mobile and broadband services provider, announces its armband mobile phone charger. The charger, which debuted at the 2008 Glastonbury music festival, provides current to a phone in response to the wearer's movement.
Read More » By: jonahcoyoteFebruary 14, 2008 » Nanowires Generate Current in Clothing Professor Zhong L. Wang, who leads a team of researchers at Georgia Institute of Technology, publishes a paper in the February 14 issue of Nature which describes how nanowires can be woven into fabric--as part of a shirt, for instance--that generates current as the wearer moves.
Read More » By: jonahcoyote