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The Art of Folding: Hiriko versus Origami!

I bet you don’t know this, but you can easily sense how it could be true: in metropolitan areas about 30% of petrol (yes, almost 1/3!) is wasted during the hard-to-find search for a place to park. The ugly truth: we all have wandered round and round, like hamsters in a wheel, in the congested city center, activating our super powers for an empty space to suddenly materialize at our convenience…

When you consider this point, it’s easy to understand how having a small vehicle can facilitate things, thus reducing noxious emissions in the air we breathe. Which is why the Smart car was invented in the first place. Luckily for us,  technology, in its unstoppable quest for more innovative solutions, has invented an even smarter car: Hiriko (which means Urban Car in Basque, as this project is supported by a Basque enterprise consortium based on a idea by MIT Media Lab).

Hiriko & Guggenheim: 2 examples of excellenceIf folding chairs have been around for exactly a century (invented in 1911) and folding strollers started being popular in the 80’s (the notorious buggy!) , a similar concept is now applied to the more complex structure of a car. But this new prototype of urban mobility does more than just shrinking on-demand.

It achieves parking excellence by means of a four-wheel traction and direction, that is, it can rotate around its axis completely (360 degrees, watch the video below). It also features a haptic steering wheel (hello gamers!), and both passengers can drive and park with the push of a button. A frontal retractable “gull wing” door is the only means of access, therefore generally, if there are other cars nearby, you park the vehicle perpendicular to the curb, not parallel to it. This applies even when the greatest space-saving is achieved: 3 Hirikos occupy the space of an average size car.

Did I forget the green icing on the cake? This little wonder is fully electric. And it’s conceived for urban sharing. Though it may easily reach 90 km/h (with an autonomy of 120km), notwithstanding your excitement, you may want to stay within the allowed city speed limits. Testing is under way in major cities around the world. Can’t wait to try one!

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What do Darth Vader, Rambo and Tony Manero have in common?

Darth Vader’s not the root of all evil after all…

You don’t need to be scary like the first, courageous like the second or a dance-wonder like the third in order to do it. No Sun? No Wind? No sweat! Let your body generate the energy you need to power your devices. Yes, you heard it right. At the cost of sacrificing the fashion side of things a bit (unless you have an army – or S&M – sense of style), you can easily forget about a cloudy sky or the dry airless morning and simply produce watts by biking, walking, running around… or even sleeping!

So let’s review the possibilities with some examples designed within the past few years, based on body parts (and famous characters):

Mouth: here’s a chance for ex-Anakin Skywalker to redeem himself and give the world a source of clean energy with what used to be his most subtly terrifying feature, his breath. Wear this mask while taking a nap (or whatever else you wish to do whilst exhaling CO2) et voilà… your phone will be charged again as if receiving a whiff from a mini wind turbine. Aire by Joao Lammoglia is a prototype soon to become the Future (or the Prequel!).

Straight out of the Matrix!

Wrist: Neo would have certainly sported this. What looks like a fetish bracelet straight out of The Matrix is in fact an energy wrist charger. Cool design company Dyson, best known for the super energy efficient Airblade hand dryer and the out-of-this-world series of powerful vacuum cleaners, presents us with this award winning tech-ornament. You’d expect it to work with movement but indeed it harnesses slight variations in your body temperature. Wear it and forget about it… till you want to recharge your Ipod.

Fingers: Like in the famous picture we all remember, Einstein would have stuck his tongue out had he managed to play with the Magic Rubik’s Cube charger. This 80’s cult toy is revisited by designer Zheng Weixi to make use of electromagnetic induction: the more you play, the more it recharges.


Legs: do you have Rambo or Apocalypse Now fantasies? Or are you simply a mountain lover, a regular hiker? Then this brace look-alike gizmo may just be what you need to light those camping nights. If you don’t mind the 3 extra pounds (on combined legs) and the screeching metallic sound (how to NOT surprise any animal around!), as well as the just-out-of-the-hospital look, then go for it! PowerWalk™ M-Series by Bionic Power (and of course, you don’t need to be Lance Armstrong to use the “good bikes” I mentioned in the Earth Hour article).

Feet: You poke your friend’s eyes when busting that famous Tony Manero’s move but now, those same shameless poses are gonna deliver some eco-good as well. With the piezoelectric dance floor, there’s no stopping the rhythm. For every step, a colored light turns on and you can even power the DJ booth. Follow the Sustainable Dance Floor tour or check out the video here below. Who’s the real Madonna now? (yep, it’s a Miracle!).

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Sustainable Dance Floor – video

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Imagine the savings if every home used 2-Watt LED lights…

GE 76456Yes, a light-filled home at night can truly be magic. Even with the subtle variations of strategically positioned lights to create the comfiest (and sometimes most romantic) atmosphere. And yet, there’s not better feeling than knowing that your lights are not only gorgeous… but low-energy consuming too.

So here’s an example for you (but obviously there are many more types and from different brands): GE’s 76456 energy-smart LED bent-tip clear candelabra.  Aside from the very attractive flame-like shape, it provides long-lasting and energy-efficient lighting by using only 2 watts of energy for a 60 lumen light output. And it features an incredibly long 12,000-hour bulb life with a color temperature of approximately 2900 K (close to the values of an incandescent light).

Though the LED craze seems to have started only recently, as a more environmentally friendly option than compact fluorescent lights (not just for their even lower watt use but also because they don’t release any mercury at the end of their life), Light Emitting Diodes were actually invented by GE scientists in the 1960s and are still cutting edge today (GE LED systems are validated in one of the world’s leading reliability laboratories).

The benefits of using LEDs can include significant energy savings, a long, useful life up to 50,000 hours and minimized maintenance and related costs. The bulb is cool burning and vibration resistant. It contains no mercury or lead (ROHS compliant), and its extremely low UV and IR levels mean better conditions for taking photographs. Anything better than looking good in a picture whilst being a planet-hero?

Make a difference, choose a low watt bulb here today…

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Easy Green Living: the Ultimate Guide

easy green living

Home, garden and beauty... all green!

We are what we eat, but we also are what we use to clean our homes, pamper our skin, and decorate our rooms, according to Renée Loux, accomplished raw food chef, award-winning author, and host of Fine Living TV’s Easy Being Green. In her new book, Easy Green Living, she applies her whole-foods philosophy to home, garden, and beauty routines.

Renée Loux demonstrates that being green at home is easy, affordable, and better in every sense of the word. She discusses the daily choices we face that can keep the home, personal care, and beauty routines free of toxins. She exposes the dirt on cleaning products and common hazardous ingredients and reveals her recommendations for greener options, including her “Green Thumb Guides” for choosing non-toxic, eco-smart, and human-friendly products.

Peppered with compelling and inspiring facts, Easy Green Living is full of “5 Step” lists, products and recipes for green cleaning, helpful charts, safer choices for every room, and inspirational advice so we can save the planet–one cleaning spritz at a time.

As recent special issues of Vanity FairTimeNewsweek, and other major publications have demonstrated, going green is an idea whose time has come. Whether addressing big-picture topics like renewable energy, or offering simple suggestions for everyday living, this complete lifestyle guide shows that healthier choices don’t mean a radical or complicated life change–it is, after all, easy to be green.

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Green Living & Clothing

Green Clothing

Choose fashion that cares...

The world is becoming more and more global, which makes swift awareness possible. Living an eco-friendly life, and wearing ethical clothes is becoming an increasing trend all over the world. The best way to show off these days is to wear clothes that show your are serious about caring for the environment.

Green living is being conscious of and living an environmentally healthy life. There are various ways to achieve this; helping to overcome environmental problems, and finding ways to its solutions, the problem of natural resources, and the ways to rectify them. Domestically how can one live a green life?

Following the basics, and starting from square one. As soon as your leave a room, switch off all lights, do not leave the television on stand-by mode. Try not to use sprays, or else use eco-friendly ones. Save water by taking a shower instead of a bath. Use public transport and car-pooling to become a source of saving the environment from the hazardous emissions from the car. Plant trees everywhere. Switch to a laptop from a desktop. All such apparently small measures need to be taken seriously.

Ethically produced clothes are known as green clothes. Green clothes are in high demand these days. Although it is not necessary for one to go out on a shopping spree, if he/she decides to go green. The greenest clothes are those that one owns.

No more materials collected, sewed, delivered, or bought. Old clothes cannot give you the satisfaction that new clothes would give, although if a little imagination is used, you might end up liking what you see. One could cut old shirts into tanktops, and capris into skirts, and long skirts into short ones. One could even make a shirt look completely new by dyeing it with a planet-friendly dye.

Green clothing involves clothes that do not need dry cleaning. Clothes that do not need warm water and can be line dried. Such clothes are difficult to find, though not impossible, and they are sustainable over a long period. By sustainable, here we are not only referring to the physical life of the clothing, but also to the fashion sense. Clothes that can be worn for long, bright colors and classic styles are better.

A number of designers are collecting used material to recycle, and use them for their latest styles. Apart from this, one does not always have to go to buy new clothes. Thanks to opportunity, salvaged, and preloved clothes shops. These are definitely better than stuffing oneself into the hand-me-downs that belonged to our brothers and sisters. The best part is there is a wide variety of styles available to suit everyone. There are even boutiques that are selling preloved prestige labels.

Excluding the physical factors, which are obvious to some extent, green clothing also involves the workers who made them. Ethically responsible clothing includes those clothes for which, we pay the fair price, and for which, the laborers were not harmed, or exploited in any way. Research showed some firms that imported clothes from Asian countries turned a blind eye to the laborers. They were over worked, underpaid, got no off days, and threatened with legal action if they told anyone the truth.

About the Author: Sarah J Jones is a fashion designer. Buy new and stylish Linen Trousers with good quality at half price now at her recommended website at

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Suffering from S.A.D.? All you need is a Natural Spectrum Replacement light.

verilux CFML27VLXEven if you don’t live that close to the North (or South) Pole, if you spend most of your winters in a country where days are short – and therefore cold and dark is what you experience the most – … you may be at risk for Seasonal Affective Disorder (SAD).

Typical symptoms include feeling down, having less energy, putting on a few pounds and having difficulty getting up in the morning: basically you may become chronically depressed and fatigued throughout the season (in a varying degree depending on the individual).

One way to cure it is to expose yourself to as much natural sunlight as possible and whenever that is not available, to use natural spectrum replacement lights at work and at home or wherever you spend most of your time.

A good example of such light is the Verilux CFML27VLX Natural Spectrum Replacement Bulb, a patented 27 watts bulb uniquely designed for Verilux lamps which can also fit several other brands of lamps. Designed to deliver 150 watts of full spectrum lighting and lasting up to 10,000 hours, this bulb contains a special blend of earth phosphors to produce a pure, naturally soothing light that improves contrast, color brilliance and visual focus, making reading and other tasks more efficient and enjoyable.

End your S.A.D. days, get a full spectrum light bulb here today!

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Gorgeously Green… if Julia Roberts says so!

8 Simple Steps to an Earth Friendly Life

The icing on the cake? A foreword by Julia Roberts.

“Here is Sophie and all her vibrant knowledge for everyone to access. I am absolutely altered. This Gorgeously Green book has provided my household with a bible of hope and help (not to mention a good cleansing mask and a source of eco-cashmere)” an ecstatic Julia Roberts declares in the foreword of this book.

Are you confused by all the advice you hear and see daily on how to “go green”? Do you want to incorporate earth-friendly practices into your life, but you don’t know where to start? Don’t stress! Green guru Sophie Uliano has sorted through all the eco-info out there and put everything you need to know about living a green lifestyle right at your fingertips.

In Gorgeously Green, Sophie offers a simple eight-step program that is an easy and fun way to begin living an earth-friendly life. Each chapter covers topics from beauty to fitness, shopping to your kitchen—even your transportation. Whether it’s finding the right lipstick, making dinner, buying gifts, or picking out a hot new outfit, finally, there is a book that tackles your daily eco-challenges with a take-charge plan. Just consider Sophie your go-to girl with all the eco-solutions. Find out how to:

  • Green your entire beauty regime
  • Detoxify your home
  • Indulge in guilt-free shopping
  • Adopt a home fitness routine
  • Prepare eco-licious treats
  • Give your kitchen a green makeover
  • Become more aware of your impact on the earth

The book’s dozens and dozens of eco-friendly tips, products, and practices combine to form a treasure trove of practical advice for every possible way to become stylishly green. Your questions about dressing, makeup, eating, shopping, cleaning, travel, and more are all answered right here.

Adopting a green lifestyle is among the most positive, forward-thinking, and personally fulfilling choices that anyone can make—and Gorgeously Green shows that it doesn’t have to be tedious, time-consuming, or glamourless!

Download this book today by clicking here…

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The Flexibility And Power Of Modern Solar Panels

solar panels

When people think of solar panels, the vision that usually pops into their mind is the large roof style solar panels that typically stretch across the entire expanse of a home roof. And while these types of solar panels are still very much in use today, although improved greatly, many panels have been greatly downsized. As a result, you can find solar panels in many common products being produced. For example, solar powered fans, lights, water pumps, generators, and bird baths are just a few of the many products being built today that possess some version of a solar panel.

Unlike in the past, today such a panel can come in a variety of sizes and designs. In many cases, such as with many styles of solar shingles, you would not even recognize them as a solar device.

Basically, this type of panel is designed to do just two things. Capture the energy from the sun and transform it into some form of usable energy – usually electricity. Although, there are various ways of performing each of these functions, most devices being created today follow a relatively standard methodology which has remained pretty consistent over the years. And this methodology is to take solar cells, which are the essential building blocks of solar technology, and configure them into various ways to produce a solar panel.

Depending on how the cells are configured, manufacturers can produce panels that output various voltages – 12 volt, 17 volt, 24 volt, and so on. This flexibility allows solar panels or batteries to be produced in all sizes – from small enough to power a small calculator to large enough to power a car, van, or other mechanical device.

Advances in solar technology design have also allowed solar cells to be placed in a wider variety of shapes and materials. In fact, many of the newer uses of solar cells involve placing them on very thin film solar panels. The film allows the panels to be twisted and bent, without harming the panel itself. With flexible panels such as these, you now see these devices being used in clothing, blankets, backpacks, and many other products that would have been unthinkable even ten years ago.

When if comes to creating energy, these devices have almost infinite use. By combining a series of these devices, you can create solar arrays that are big enough to provide enough electricity to power an entire home.

But, even though solar technology has advanced by leaps and bounds over the past decade, it is still not yet developed enough to provide the amount of energy needed to run the typical home in areas of the country that have limited daylight.

However, in many other areas of the country, the technology has advanced so far that running a home, year round, on solar energy alone, is entirely feasible.

About the Author: For information on more solar related topics such as solar panel electricity and solar powered light, please come to our website.

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What’s smarter than a low-watt light? A 3 Way type.

GE 47448

What’s smarter than a low-watt light? A 3 Way light. Yes, if you are cleaning your bedroom you may wish to use the highest setting, if you are reading your fav book under the duvet you may go for the mid-setting and if you are simply having… a fun time in bed with your honey, you may wish to dim it to the lowest setting.

A good example of such lights are the GE Energy Smart bulbs, that provide the same light as a Soft White bulb while using fewer watts. For instance, GE 12 Watt-23 Watt-29 Watt (50/150 Watt equivalent) Energy Smart Spiral 3-Way is specifically designed for 3-way table lamps in your home or office. GE 3-way bulbs offer a range of light levels (Initial Lumens: 600/1600/2150).

Choose the low light setting for energy savings, higher settings for general and activity lighting.  Saves $121.00 in energy costs (based on rated life of 10,000 hrs compared to 8 150 watt A21 bulbs whose rated life is 1,200 hrs). And it is guaranteed to last 6 years (based on 4 hours use per day).

Get smarter, try this light bulb today here…

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The Naturally Clean Home: 150 Easy & Green Formulas

natural clean home

This is how I want my home to be!

It’s time to “green” that cleaning routine! Millions of Americans are replacing harsh chemical cleansers with eco-friendly alternatives. Unfortunately, most commercial green cleaners are expensive, and they often come with dubious environmental claims.

Effective, nontoxic alternatives can be mixed up easily from kitchen staples — baking soda, vinegar, lemon juice, herbs, and borax — plus a handful of easy-to-find essential oils. In the second edition of The Naturally Clean Home, Karyn Siegel-Maier offers 150 all-natural recipes for cleaning every area of the home — from bathrooms to bedding, and from carpets to cabinetry.

Siegel-Maier, a writer specializing in complementary therapies whose work is featured in such publications as Mother Earth News and Natural Living Today, presents quick recipes for cleansers that are nontoxic, biodegradable, and freshsmelling. Formulas are so simple that even a novice can make them, yet they are as effective as the commercial options. Best of all, these recipes are much less expensive than commercial cleaners; most can be made for mere pennies per use.

With the second edition of this popular book comes a host of hard-working new recipes, including Rosemary-Geranium Floor Wipes for electrostatic floor mops, Thyme to Make Your Own Carpet Steamer, Weekend Warrior Wicker Wash, Telephone Dirty Talk Tamer, Clear the Air Room Spritzer, and Lavender Lift Automatic Dishwasher Soap.

Siegel-Maier also offers recipes for outdoor spaces — like Shoo-Fly Shake to keep flies away from your backyard barbecue — and covers areas less commonly considered in the cleaning routine: garden, houseplants, computer, even the septic tank! Whether scrubbing or scouring, degreasing or dusting, The Naturally Clean Home makes it fun to mix up chemical-free products that are easy on home and planet!

Enough with harsh chemicals, get this book today by clicking here…

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