Archive for the 'Energy' Category

How much electricity does the Facebook app consume everyday by making phones vibrate with push notifications?

Monday, August 26th, 2013

My silly little goal is to convince Facebook to pre-configure its mobile apps so they don’t make phones vibrate by default and push silent notifications to mobile users.

Help me make an estimate, we need to know on average how many milliwatts the average phone will spend per notification, and an estimate of how many push notifications are received by smartphones worldwide from facebook.

Say a phone consumes 150 milliwatts per push notification, and in one minute alone facebook sends 1 million notifications, Facebook would be consuming the world about 9 Megawatts/hour. This would be just a number thrown out there since I don’t know for sure if that’s the average power consumed, nor I know how many notifications are received per minute, I bet it’s way more than 1 million per minute.

Would love the help from people who work at Facebook or who have stats on push notifications, as well as any engineer working with phone hardware at any major phone manufacturing company.

Twitter is also sending a lot of notifications to phones.

Turn off vibration on your Facebook app, you will save a considerable amount of battery every day.

Justin Hall-Tipping: No power plants, No grids necessary

Wednesday, October 19th, 2011

What would happen if we could generate power from our windowpanes? In this moving talk, entrepreneur Justin Hall-Tipping shows the materials that could make that possible, and how questioning our notion of ‘normal’ can lead to extraordinary breakthroughs.

Breaking Hydrogen from H2O – Think of this for your car

Saturday, July 5th, 2008

Maybe a smaller system could be done for your car. It’d draw power from the alternator to break hydrogen into a tank, once that tank’s pressurised enough with hydrogen, when you press the gas, hydrogen could be released and sent to the engine’s cylinders (instead of Gasoline, or with Gasoline), helping you save gas.

Another way would you could use the hydrogen would be using a hydrogen fuel cell in the car, using the hydrogen and chemical reactions to produce electricity to charge another batery, and have electric engines on the wheels, when the bateries are charged enough, the Internal Combustion Engine rests and the other engines take over.

Now, if this thing succeeded, I wonder how fast we’d run out of water, we don’t have enough fresh water as it is in the world, but you could probably save up to 30% gas (pulling number out of my ass)

Are we in recession?

Friday, May 9th, 2008
Disclaimer: I’ve no clue what I’m talking about, I’m a software engineer but I like to read a lot about economy and look the world around me instead of just listening to the media. I’ve probably not looked at enough variables, I just went for the GDP indicator and what I think the role of energy is in world economics, feel free to enlighten me and the audience with different perspectives.

I went to look for the definition of the word that’s in everyone’s mouth nowadays:

“In macroeconomics, a recession is a decline in a country’s real gross domestic product (GDP), or negative real economic growth, for two or more successive quarters of a year”


Aha, so recession is the consecutive decrease of the real GDP.

Then I went and looked for the GDP numbers to see if the real GDP of the US has had any negative economic growth during the last 4 quarters, this on the BEA website (U.S. Department of Commerce – Bureau of Economic Analisys)
Here are the GDP growth quarter to quarter since 2006

2006q1	4.8
2006q2	2.4
2006q3	1.1
2006q4	2.1
2007q1	0.6
2007q2	3.8
2007q3	4.9
2007q4	0.6
2008q1	0.6

These numbers from the BEA show the GDP rate of change in respect with each last quarter. If you look at the classical definition, there’s just been a slow growth, not negative grow, so we’re still not technically in recession, just in an economic slowdown.

The 0.6 growth has happened before (2007q1) and after that the q2 and q3 showed decent growth.

Maybe the economy can only grow so much its reaching a peak, what scares me though, it s the low interest rates added to the rising prices of OIL, they probably go in hand since we’re putting cheaper dollars out there so OPEC doesn’t want to loose the real value of their OIL, plus they like to abuse prices every now and then.

One thing is for sure, every world wide recession has been followed by the whims of the fuckers at OPEC whenever they decide to peak prices.

I believe a lot of this recession buzz has to do with the US elections, fear to get votes (they got us with the terrorists last time), it’s true there’s been a lot of shit happening with the mortgage crisis but that was something just waiting to happen when you give high risk loans to so many stupid people that can’t do basic math to consider all costs associated to purchasing a home while they already are deep in debt. Sadly most people in this country have no clue on how to manage their money, but I guess that’s good for the smart ones, you can sell anything to a lot of people.

In a real recession you don’t have movies with opening weekends of +$100M while the same week people sleep inline on video game stores to get the latest video games. You go out at night, and every restaurant is crammed with people, most businesses are doing good, at least in NY I don’t see the signs of recession anytime soon, what I see if probably a little inflation coming soon if something isn’t done.

You don’t see economy sectors like clothing and electronics have the growth they’ve recently had on a real recession (like the one I lived for years in my own country, where you have to worry about buying food day to day, and companies are closing left and right and finding a job is a blessing)

OIL Prices & US Presence in Iraq
The US is sitting in Iraq, “a country with at least 150 billion barrels of crude, and except for Saudi Arabia, the cheapest production costs in the world” – (Paul Roberts, The End of Oil), I believe it’s a good thing in a way that we’re there (for the economy, I’m against war by all means), but it seems even though there’s a strong US presence in the area, nothing can be done to mantain oil price stability and that could well send us in recession. Wish the government would explain one day in plain english “hey buddies, we’re gonna cut the bullshit, the war on terrorism was a nice lie we came up with to protect our economy, terrorism is the least of our worries compared to an energy crisis, we just need to keep the oil flowing at a decent price, please let us do our thing in Iraq, it was either us, or Saddam taking over Kuwait and maybe Saudi Arabia, and then we’d be in deep shit”

Let’s look at the GDP during and after the Golf War ((2 August 1990 – 28 February 1991)

1990q4	-3.0
1991q1	-2.0
1991q2	2.6
1991q3	1.9
1991q4	1.9
1992q1	4.2
1992q2	3.9
1992q3	4.0
1992q4  4.5
1993q1	0.5
1993q2	2.0
1993q3	2.1
1993q4	5.5

During the months of the war, we had negative growth, but look how nice growth was later down the line…, and we’re still growing, little but growing. Try to grow a trillion dollar economy quarter after quarter like the US, who’s your daddy?

Does the current administration want oil price stability?
The last 8 years of this nation have been run by two Oil men, Dick Cheney and George W. Bush, you’d think one of their goals would be to keep oil prices stable… or maybe not 😉

Let’s hope the next president of the U.S. will be able to do something about oil prices, they’re the one thing that can bring this nation down, terrorism is probably a minor threat compared to a $200 oil barrel.

Maybe now it’s a great time to invest, maybe not, I’ll just quote two things Warren Buffet said to Fortune Magazine in April 2008:

“…when people panic, when fear takes over, or when greed takes over, people react just as irrationally as they have in the past”

I believe the media, and politics are trying to scare people with this whole recession buzz, we have to think and act rationally.

the second quote goes:

“You should get greedy when others are fearful and fearful when others are greedy”

Let em buzz about recession, maybe it’ll affect some stock investors, prices will drop, and it’ll be good for greedy people during fearful times. Might be good to look at that cheap YHOO now that MSFT supposedly dropped their offer, but that’s another story, and probably unrelated since the stock market is a different beast and shouldn’t really be that much coupled with macroeconomics.

The Cost of Gas in the US as of March 2008

Saturday, March 15th, 2008

As gas prices reach more than USD $4 per gallon, and the price per oil barrel hits USD $110 people post pictures to Reddit in relation to how gas prices feel like to them all over the country.

Wired Magazine calls for more picture uploads.

Here are my favorites so far:

Do you think we’ve reached the world peak of oil production already? Do you think its just OPEC countries trying to fuck the rest of the world? Do you think the US government is on it by devaluating the currency so we’ll willing fully accept the Amero?

Have you given some thought or discussed with anyone on how to switch to an alternate energy source, or many alternate energy sources during 2008?

Recommended Reading: Oil End Game

Is Steorn a Big Bluff?

Monday, July 16th, 2007

I’m not sure if I made a post about this on the past, but I know I certainly talked about it on my podcast… its about Steorn and it’s “ORBOS” technology, they claim they’ve developed a device that creates FREE ENERGY, that is, the output of energy in the machine is higher than the input, so it basically breaks the 2nd law of thermodynamics.

They had promised a demo for July 5th. This is what they said on their site:

Steorn announcement: Kinetica Demonstration

Further to Steorn’s announcement yesterday (5th July) regarding the technical difficulties experienced during the installation of its “Orbo” technology at the Kinentica Museum in London, Steorn has decided to postpone the demonstration until further notice.

Sean McCarthy CEO stated that “technical problems arose during the installation of the demonstration unit in the display case on Wednesday evening. These problems were primarily due to excessive heat from the lighting in the main display area. Attempts to replace those parts affected by the heat led to further failures and as a result we have to postpone the public demonstration until a future date.”

He continued that “we apologise for the inconvenience caused to all the people who had made arrangements to visit the demonstration or were planning on viewing the demonstration online.”

Over the next few weeks the company will explore alternative dates for the public demonstration.

I guess I like the thought of free energy so much, I’m going to think they actually had those technical problems…
what do you think? are they Bluffing?

Or do you think the big cartels of Energ, gave Steorn senior executives a black mail Live Video feed of their dearest family members being held at gun point so they wouldn’t do the demo and look like loosers?

Refineria Portatil que usa BASURA como Combustible (Tipo Back to the Future)

Wednesday, February 14th, 2007

Fuente: Technology Review

Investigadores han construido y probado una maquina (para uso militar) portatil que convierte de manera eficiente desperdicios en electricidad.

Un proyecto de energia-apartir-de-desperdicios guiado por investigadores de la universidad de Purdue, le da un nuevo significado al termino “Poder Militar”. Cientificos del departamento de agricultura e ingenieria biologica de la universidad, han desarrollado una maquina portatil que convierte una variedad de desperdicios de alimentos y basura inorganica en electricidad, reduciendo la cantidad de combustible diesel y basura que los soldados deben cargar con ellos en el campo.

Ademas de ser lo suficientemente pequena como para transportar un contenedor de 20 pies, la “refineria tactica” consiste en 3 tecnologias en una:

  • Un Bioreactor que utiliza enzimas y micro organismos para convertir desperdicoi de comida en etanol
  • Una “Gasificacion” que convierte plasticos, papel y otros desperdicios residuales en metao y propano de bajo grado
  • Un motor diesel modificado que puede quemar gas, etanol y contenido diesel en proporciones variables.

El motor le da energia a un generador que produce la electricidad, Michael Ladisch, investigador lider, dice: “Lo que es unico, es la forma en que el sistema esta integrado”

Se requiere combustible Diesel para las primeras horas en que la maquina debe encender desde cero. Eventualmente, basura, tal como desperdicio de comida, es alimentada al sistema, el resultado es etanol y gas que gradualmente desplazan al combustible diesel, el cual es reducido al minimo goteo. El producto resultante de la maquina, es una ceniza benigna que se limpia cada ciertos dias.

Dos prototipos seran enviados a otros paises para realizar demostraciones de 6 meses. Se espera que el sistema pueda ser encojido otro 60%, haciendolo lo suficientemente pequeno para meterlo en un Trailer. Los desarrolladores esperan que un dia sea practico para ser empleado en zonas civiles, como en zonas para recuperacion de desastre, o simplemente como una forma de generar electricidad en lugares donde existe demasiado desperdicio organico e inorganico.

“Este es el camino a seguir, de una perspectiva de sostenibilidad”, dice Kartik Chandran, profesor asistente de ingenieria de tierra y ambiente en la universidad de Columbia. Chandran dice que sistemas como el disenado por Purdue no son solo ideales para aplicaciones militares pero tambien serian sumamente utiles en paises pobres que generalmente no tienen electricidad. “El reto mas grande esta en separar el combustible una vez que se ha producido, y luego limpiarlo para no danar tu sistema de combustion”

El proyecto purdue inicialmente estudio los tipicos productos de desperdicios que crean los soldados en el campo, para seleccionar las mejores tecnologias de conversion de energia. Un proceso biocatalitico fue elegido para lidiar con la parcion de comida en el desperdicio. El truco fue obtener el pH y el balance de la temperatura correcto para la mezcla de enzimas y microorganismos que los investigadores eligieron. Para plasticos, madera y otro desperdicio que no fuese comida, estos elementos pueden ser descompuestos en un bioreactor, un gasificador fue desarrollado para exponer el material a calor extremo en un ambiente de poco oxigeno.

“Tuvimos suerte”, dice Ladisch, indicando el complejo modelamiento matematico que se requirio para que todas las partes funcionaran correctamente en conjunto. “Giramos la llave, y prendio de verdad, esto nunca habia sucedido en mi carrera anteriormente”

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