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Liquid-Filled LED Bulbs: 360 Degree Light

by Justin Thomas •

I’ve been testing a new LED bulb called the HydraLux. These unique bulbs are filled with a clear liquid coolant (a non-toxic paraffin oil). Other LED bulbs use large metal fins or fans for cooling purposes. The advantage of using a liquid coolant is that the LED bulb can produce 360° light like a regular incandescent bulb.

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Mint: A Free, Easy-To-Use Operating System

by Justin Thomas •

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I’ve converted my Apple computers to run Mint Linux in place of OS X. Mint Linux was built to be easy to install and a system that novice users could enjoy. Based on Ubuntu, Mint became the poplar desktop version of Linux this year. Linux is a free, open-source operating system that been around for 30 years. It’s not widely …

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Mercury Fillings: Not Efficient

by Kristy Harvey •

Update: Recently, the FDA concluded that mercury filling have safety issues, see this news story. Sweden, Denmark and Norway have banned them. Germany and Austria have discouraged use. Yet, in the United States, dental amalgams, the “silver” fillings that have been commonly used in dental practices for decades, are still used frequently as an inexpensive and popular treatment for cavities. …

9

Solar Balloons Get $21 Million In Funding

by Justin Thomas •

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They look like foil party balloons, but they are actually very efficient solar concentrators. These solar “balloons” were developed by a company called Cool Earth, based in California, and it has just received $21 million dollars in investor funding. The company is now planning to build a 10-megawatt plant of solar balloons in the next couple years. This power plant …

8

Efficient Concrete Replacement: Blocks of Trash

by Justin Thomas •

From Live Science: Last year’s trash could become next year’s model home, thanks to the invention of a new type of construction material made entirely from waste products. “Bitublocks,” created by engineer John Forth of the University of Leeds in England, are composed of recycled glass, sewage sludge, incinerator ash, the by-products of metal purification and pulverized fuel ash from …

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Loopwing Wind Turbine At Japanese Tradeshow

by Justin Thomas •

I first saw the Loopwing wind turbine last year. Lately, the company has been showing it off in trade show across Japan. There’s still no solid data on this turbine, but the design is certain intriguing — I’m keeping my eye on this one. Here’s what the Loopwing website says about the turbine: it’s a low-noise, low-vibration, self-stabilizing device. It …

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WindSpire: An Attractive Wind Turbine For The Home

by Justin Thomas •

A Nevadan company, Mariah Power, has launched a unique wind turbine for the home, called the WindSpire. The turbine is rated at 1 kilowatt, and it has a thin design — it’s only two feet wide, but 20 feet tall (see a photo here). The color is also customizable — suggested colors are: Milky White, Forest Green, Sky Blue, Stop …

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Sweet: Jeans Made Out of Sugar Cane

by Justin Thomas •

A Japanese company is making jeans out of a blend of sugar cane and selvage denim. The cane used is Sweet Sorghum, otherwise known as Sweet Millet. It’s a type of grass grown all over the world for making a molasses-like syrup and animal feed. The Sugarcane jeans that feature this fiber have a faint sweet smell and may have …

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IKEA To Start Charging For Plastic Bags

by Justin Thomas •

IKEA will begin charging customer five cents for disposable plastic bags. IKEA hopes that this move will be the first step in ending their use altogether. The company said the decision was aimed at reducing the amount of plastic bags that are thrown away. IKEA is believed to be the first major retailer in the U.S. to undertake such a …

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Raw Cacao Butter: An Efficient Dessert & Skin Moisturizer

by Justin Thomas •

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Raw cacao butter — this is the pure oil of the cacao bean, extracted using a cold-press technique — the temperature stays around 104 degrees Fahrenheit, instead of 300 degrees which is the norm. The oil is edible and possesses a rich, delicate chocolate aroma. You can add a piece of the cacao butter to your favorite smoothie, ice cream …