Joule Thieves

I recently read an article about the wasted energy resulting from charging electrical and electronic devices beyond the point where they have fully charged. The article used a play on words to call attention to this waste.

In this age of modern technology, more and more devices rely on electricity to function. Gadgets like cell phones, laptops, MP3 players, tablets and lately, cars, are plugged every day to have their batteries recharged. Most of the time, we allot recharging time whenever we sleep so we can make sure that these batteries are fully charged. But what we don’t always realize is by doing this, we consume much more energy than needed.

Simple Survival Technology

The “4 Block” Rocket Stove! – DIY Rocket Stove – (Concrete/Cinder Block Rocket Stove)

– Simple DIY

Lotsa lynx here.

Notes From – “VY is Closing: Now What?” (Brattleboro Citizens’ Breakfast – September 20, 2013)

NOTES FROM: VY is Closing: Now what?

Presenter: Lissa Weinmann   

Lissa Weinmann, a , has long specialized in US-Cuba relations and international trade laws and has worked on a variety of domestic and international policy initiatives.. She said she thought there would be nothing tougher and more polarized than dealing with US Cuba policy — but that half-century imbroglio pales in comparison to the equally as long-lived and intractable problems surrounding nuclear waste policy.

New Climate Change Report Says Your Kids Will Live a Hot Life

The new Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC) climate change report is out and .

According to, a child born today could see temperature rises of up to 6.3°C in its lifetime – enough to bring catastrophic impacts to the planet if he or she lives to be in their mid 90’s.

They report that we have major changes to go through, as “humans cannot burn all of the coal, oil and gas reserves that countries and companies possess” without causing significant damage to the habitability of the planet.

Yankee, What Next?

When Yankee powers down, it will have to be “decommissioned”. However, that process only applies to those structures and appurtenances that were actually involved in nuclear production or otherwise affected. There are numerous other buildings that can remain. They should be put to useful service.

The spent fuel, of course, must be dealt with in an urgent manner. In reality, nothing useful can be developed there while the fuel remains.

One of the biggest assets at the site is the 345,000 volt transmission line network extending North, South and East. Although not owned by Yankee, it is located there and has been significantly upgraded recently. Any new development needs to take this into consideration.

Sanders Says Southeastern Vermont at Cutting Edge on Broadband

WASHINGTON, July 17 – Sen. Bernie Sanders (I-Vt.) said today that a region in southeastern Vermont is getting the fastest consumer connection to the Internet anywhere in the United States.

Springfield, Vt., and 13 neighboring towns – Saxons River, Chester, North Springfield, Grafton, Bridgewater, Cuttingsville, Wallingford, Hartland, Killington, Pawlet, Danby, Mt. Holly and Middletown Springs – are in the process of getting state-of-the-art Internet access at speeds 100 times faster than average and faster than anywhere else in the United States except a Kansas City, Mo., pilot project by Google.

Funny Blue Stuff – Solar Power in Brattleboro


What’s all the blue stuff in this picture?

The picture is of the Bavarian town of Stadtsteinach in the Frankenwald, about a four-hour train ride from the airport in Frankfurt, Germany. The town is described by Thom Hartmann in his book Rebooting the American Dream.

Here’s how Thom describes it.

Computer Suggestions Sought

Auggghhh.  I may have to get a new computer.  Mine is 6 years old, I think.  A very lovable iMac that I do not want to replace.  I have had macs my entire computer life.  Alas, I am at a point where I cannot afford, nor does it make sense for me to have a laptop and a desktop — seems way too outdated, besides.  I am really wanting a new laptopish/ipad/iphone/ipod single product to be created so I don’t have to buy 4 devices. 

Smart Meter News

The following newsletter is being distributed by, a Vermont organization with a mission “to educate the general public about the adverse health effects of microwave radiation and the health and privacy impacts of wireless smart meters.”

StopSmeters: Nightmare in Maine, Electrosmog, WiFi

To follow up on the outrageous news from Maine; Central Maine Power’s  (CMP) “Smart” Meter project calculations were a tad off. Instead of $25 million in projected savings, through “efficiencies” etc…  there’s a deficit of approximately $80 million (that’s the low estimate…) Maine’s PUC is initiating an audit to get to the bottom of this debacle. CMP would like to pass the buck to customers with an 8% + hike in rates each year for the next five years. 

Safe Surfing

A couple years ago, I became leery of the amount of tracking Google engages in when anyone types a search term into their search engine. The last meaningful Google search I did was to find a safe alternative to Google, which has turned out to be . Unlike Google, which uses your IP address to track your searches as well as your movements around the web, does not record your IP address and does not track users of their service.

Email Scam Targets Sovernet Users

users are being hit with what appears to be an email scam know as “phishing” in which a scammer tries to get you to give up your email address and account information. I’ve gotten a few of these in the past couple of days.

The email says:

Robots, Jobs, And The Post-Money Economy

I just got through reading the 2013 Roadmap for US Robotics, a guide to the current state of robotics. It includes goals and expectations of robotics for the next 5, 10, and 15 year periods.

The good news is that robots will be able to do just about everything for us. 

The bad news is that robots will be able to do just about everything for us.