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[Photo from Connors934 on Flickr]

A few weeks ago I was at Mass Maritime Academy and was impressed by their efforts to use and prove out solar powered lighting for their walkways.

The lights illuminate the northwest campus areas around the dormitories and dining hall. The lights, provided by SolarOne® and Hadco, are powered by photovoltaic (PV) panels, making them completely independent of the electric grid. With their own solar power source, the light posts can easily be installed wherever light is needed, without expensive investments in trenching, cabling and repaving. "We now have a beautifully lit walkway students are using extensively, day and night" said Capt. Allen Hansen, who championed the alternative energy project and is Vice President of Operations at the school. The new lights replace an old assortment of low pressure sodium fixtures and overbearing flood lights, the combination of which left the campus spotty, dark and poorly lit. Instead of adding safety, the old lighting created isolated pools of glare between dark areas. With no underground power conduits, the easily installed PV-powered lights were readily and economically placed along walkways and around the dormitories, which previously had no site lighting....The softer, whiter directional LED lamps provide exceptional clarity and visibility on areas that require light, without sending stray light into areas that are best left dark. The result is an enhanced night time setting, with marked reduction in light pollution and energy usage.

In the United States, we generate most of our electricity by burning coal to heat water and use the resulting steam to turn a turbine which generates electricity. There are other sources of fuel in our energy portfolio, but most of it still comes from coal, the most carbon-rich fuel on the palette. We get some of our energy from other fossil fuels like natural gas and oil as well, and it's likely that we will not be able to continue withdrawing from our energy bank forever. Some people believe that we have or about to reach a peak in oil production, meaning that we have taken the easy stuff out of the ground and are faced with the unpleasant and difficult task of chasing the last drop. Whatever your reasons for wanting to see us reduce our dependence on non-renewable foreign sources of energy, it makes a lot of sense for us makers to look at solar energy. Fortunately, the sun still shines on the ground, where its energy can be harvested, used and stored.


[Photo from Connors934 on Flickr]

The Vineyard Energy Project aims to reduce Martha's Vineyard's dependence on off-island power:

Solar Energy is a great way to get us started on the road to becoming a Renewable Energy Island and help us achieve greater energy independence. Generating power and making hot water on island homes and businesses reduces our contribution to Climate Change, particularly when combined with energy efficiency efforts. Energy generated locally is more efficient because there is less transmission loss.

Editor's Note: This post is part of a series of posts sponsored by GE. GE had nothing to do with the content of the article and no control over Make: Online editorial. -Gareth

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Amid protests in the streets and on social networks calling for Guatemala's president to step down after the assasination of a whistleblower attorney, Guatemalan police have arrested a Twitter user for "inciting panic" through tweets. In the capital city today, police raided his home and confiscated his computer.

Above, the tweet for which Guatemalan I.T worker Jean Anleu ("jeanfer"), was arrested.

Quick background: The Guatemalan bank Banrural is at the center of the country's current political crisis: the recently assassinated attorney Rodrigo Rosenberg represented a finance expert, Khalil Musa, who was said to have refused to participate in corrupt transactions involving that bank. Musa, was assassinated in March. After continuing to make statements about alleged government complicity in that murder, and in the financial crimes Musa protested, Rosenberg was himself shot to death this past Sunday. Days before his murder, Rosenberg recorded a video saying he believed he would soon be assassinated by forces acting at the orders of Guatemalan president Álvaro Colom. After his death, the video spread virally on YouTube, sparking widespread protests on and offline.

Today, Twitter user "Jeanfer" was arrested for suggesting in a tweet that people who had money deposited in Banrural should remove those funds, and by doing so, break the control that corrupt entities have over the state-controlled financial institution.

Below, my clumsily translated snip from a report in the Guatemalan newspaper Prensa Libre about the arrest, which as far as I know is the first time anyone in Guatemala, or Central America, period, has been detained over something they posted to Twitter:

The police today detained Jean Ramses Anleu Fernández, an information technology worker, for having incited financial panic on the social network Twitter, after having written this Tuesday a comment on Twitter which called for a united force to take funds out of [the Guatemalan bank] Banrural, as a result of the information transmitted in a video recorded by the attorney Rodrigo Rosenberg before his assassination.

Jean Anleu Fernández, known on the microblogging social networking website Twitter as "Jeanfer," was arrested today during a police raid of his residence in zona 8 of Guatemala City, in which the police took his computers at the order of the Guatemalan government's public ministry division in charge of banks.

The head of the banking system, Genaro Pacheco, told reporters that Mr. Anleu admitted that he made this comment about Banrural on Twitter.

Mr. Anleu Fernández wrote on Tuesday May 12, at approximately 2pm, a commentary ("post") in which he expressed, "The first action people should take is to remove cash from Banrural, and break the banks of corrupt people," along with the hashtag #escandalogt, which is known by Twitter users as a way of classifying posts related to the Rosenberg assasination case.

Inset photo: Twitter user "Jeanfer" being fingerprinted as police take him to jail in Guatemala City. Photo: Prensa Libre/ Carlos Sebastián

Discussion of Rosenberg's assassination, and related calls for an investigation and/or removal of Colom from power, continues undaunted on Twitter -- and is easily followed with the #escandalogt hashtag. As one might imagine, there is a great deal of outcry against @jeanfer's arrest today. One Twitterer said just now (translated from Spanish): "The capture of @jeanfer appears to me to be a smoke curtain to divert attention from the accusations against president Colom."

Below, screenshot of another form of online protest: en masse, Guatemalan Twitter users are re-tweeting the comment that led to @jeanfer's arrest.

Being a parent with a young child, there is nothing like the fear you have of losing your child in a crowded mall or worse.

Link Child Locator is designed to help you locate your children location by telling you the distances and direction with its small LCD display.

Unfortunately for this parent, this is a concept design and it doesn’t exist in any form other than these images. Lets hope that some company sees both the opportunity to not only make money with this great idea, but more importantly look at this as an opportunity to help save some children.


  • Child’s bracelet: transmitter module that works at a range of up to 100’
  • Parent’s watch: receives the child’s signal and indicates its direction and distance on a small LCD display
  • Designer: Continuum
  • Status: Concept –doesn’t exist in any form other than these images.

Link Child Locator

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So often creative-reuse and found-object art has a "junky" quality that's hard to escape because...well, you know, it's basically made from junk. I always applaud the effort to turn trash into treasure, but it's rarely done so well as in the case of these amazing sculptures from reclaimed tires. That the material is such an egregious disposal problem only makes them that much more awesometastic. Via Dude Craft.

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Eyebeam student residents and co-curators Tahj Banks, Glen Moore, Jayquan Harris and Wandy Marcano present an evening of “Clip-Kino.” The content of the screening—also known as micro-cinema—was assembled during the Seeders ‘N’ Leechers ‘R’ Us #1 workshops led by Eyebeam resident artist Andrew Gryf Paterson. Micro-cinema refers to content downloaded from P2P online file-sharing networks; public screenings of the downloaded content—typically viewed in the context of “privacy”— are in this way shared with a larger peer group or community.

The theme of the screenings, Teen Mashup will be oriented towards the student residents’ personal interests and environments. Please note: Free popcorn!

For more information visit: http://seedersnleechers.info/

Andrew Gryf Paterson and Seeders ‘N’ Leechers documentary assistant Christina Kral are returning to Europe for the Pixelache Festival of Electronic Arts and Subcultures, Helsinki, Finland, March 13 – 16. A biannual-organizer within the Pixelache Network, Andrew will initiate and co-produce the Baltic Boxwars project, inviting Boxwars UK to Helsinki and introducing their high-energy “cardboard-clad battle” events to the local punk and electronic art subcultures in the city. Christina will document the various performances, workshops and presentations of the Pixelache Festival.

http://helsinki.pixelache.ac/ | http://university.pixelache.ac/ | http://boxwars.co.uk/


In the summer of 1781, James Armistead Lafayette was the sneakiest man in America.  He earned this dubious distinction providing intelligence.  Against impossible odds, James succeeded, liberating our insurgent forefathers from the British Empire.  Spook™ is a multimedia installation project, in-progress, based on James’ true story as a double-agent for America’s first Director of Central Intelligence, George Washington.

The installation "Spook™ Experiment" will consist of numerous elements:  HD video production equipment; Documentary 18th century images, hand-made forensic, drawings, reconstructions & abstractions;  the screenplay “In Spook’s Clothing" (© armstead 2007) and research documents.  These media items will be staged as a film set.  This life-sized tableau, handmade, drawn and constructed by the artist, will render an immersive abstraction of the espionage landscape that James navigated.  The constructed space will be flexible and extensible, allowing the artist to stage espionage happenings.

The espionage happenings of "Spook™ Experiment" will be scheduled events.  Using the feature length screenplay "In Spook’s Clothing," professional actors, passersby and museum visitors will reenact James' historic achievements by reading for the role of James or George Washington, if they choose.  They may choose any scene or the artist may suggest one.

Spook™: Experiment integrates actors and regular people into the same, free form cattle-call process and film production.  It dissolves the American Revolution’s mythology and replaces it with a serial act; hundred’s of people, inhabiting James' peculiar role, an invisible agent, in the midst of a bloody insurgency.


Over a period of 26 days from 12 – 6PM, using a treadmill customized for cyberspace, Eyebeam 2008 Commissioned Artist Joseph DeLappe will reenact Mahatma Gandhi’s famous 1930s Salt March, a 240-mile protest in response to the British salt tax, live and in Second Life, the Internet-based virtual world.

For this performance, DeLappe will be physically walking on a converted treadmill the entire 240 miles of the original march.­ His steps on the treadmill, which will control the forward movement of his avatar in the online world,­ will both be physically and virtually reenacting this seminal march of protest.

Others are invited and encouraged to join the walk with him online in Second Life. Visit DeLappe's website for daily start locations, updates and information regarding the project: http://www.delappe.net


The clown ride begins at 2:30PM at 73 Morton St. btw. Greenwich St. and Hudson Ave., and will end at Eyebeam at 4PM, where we invite you to join us for a toast to celebrate NYC’s new bike lanes. For more info visit http://times-up.org/index.php?page=bike-lane-liberation.


What if walls could breathe? On Saturday, March 29, 2008, Eyebeam presented a panel and showcase on architecture and sustainability as part of its Feedback exhibition.

In the past 15 years, some of the most vibrant experiments in architecture have used computer technologies to:

  1. develop new types of geometries, with curves, facets, and non-standard shapes
  2. fabricate architectural elements directly from digital files without working drawings.

Recently, some architects have been using new technologies to explore and realize radically different kinds of spaces that respond to their environment in real time: responsive kinetic architecture.

The Living (architects David Benjamin and Soo-in Yang) showcased the work of graduate and undergraduate students in their Columbia University and Pratt Institute classes on responsive kinetic architecture. Chris Garvin, AIA LEED AP of Cook + Fox Architects and partner at Terrapin Bright Green, Elisabeth Thompson, Executive Director of the Buckminster Fuller Institute, and Jonathan Marvel, partner at Rogers Marvel Architects discussed the state of environmental practice in building and design.



They Were Here was a site-specific installation by Addie Wagenknecht, Production Lab Fellow, installed on April 3, 2008, in the Northwest corner of Clement Clarke Moore Park, located at 22nd and 10th Aves.

A flock of stark, white, static two-dimensional birds inhabited a tree. The birds’ physical negatives were modeled on the actual species that once inhabited Manhattan. According to a recent Audubon Society report, 20 species of birds are declining at a rate of 68 percent.