The title of youngest, biggest Apple fanboy and technologist has been spoken for by a precocious five-year-old named London. His mother sweetly explains how her first iPhone ignited an obsession in London (or as she refers to him, the “Little Techie”) with all things related to Apple. As a result, their home is strewn with “at least 50 iPhone and iPods made out of paper, icons and applications built out of LEGOS, and cardboard laptops and broken keyboards filling his toy bins and bookshelf.” And luckily for us, these creations are now archived and displayed at a Tumblr all its own, Little Techie. I personally love the paper craft designed ones, such as this detailed iPad, but unsurprisingly LEGO bricks figure prominently in many of his models.
Once again, the Internets really DO work! Two-and-a-half weeks ago, we told you about a new app called Peek that tried to make sending dirty pics to the objects of your affection safer. The original idea: You take a naughty picture with your phone via Peek, send it out and the recipient can only view the picture once, through a small circular moveable “keyhole”, for only 30 seconds before it disappears (from both your phones). Cool idea, right? But we discovered one massive hole in the app — if you quickly moved the keyhole around and snapped a bunch of screen shots during that 30-second window, in Photoshop you could puzzle together a pretty revealing composite, sort of defeating the purpose of the app in the process.
Well, color us pink, because we were tickled to receive the following note the other day:
One of my favorite apps in the past couple months for my iPhone has been Cinemagr.am (FYI: This is not a plug!). It’s an obvious derivative inspired by both Instagram and artsy gif images or “cinemagraphs,” which I’ve previously blogged about here, that have proliferated all over the Internet. However, as these 20 examples collected by BuzzFeed demonstrates, it’s a pretty fun app. Here are a few that I’ve made in the past.
Assembly lines rolling out the Focus Electric: Think Nissan’s the only game in town for a true electric vehicle? Not anymore: Ford’s started production of its 2012 Focus Electric in Michigan. (via @edbegleyjr)
Ranger Rick comes to the iPhone: Your kids bug you to play games on your smartphone? The National Wildlife Federation has created a way to make sure they’re learning something. The new Ranger Rick mobile apps provide games for kids as young as 2 (yes, 2!) to sharpen their knowledge about wild animals.
Type-o-Matic: Feeling frustrated by the aesthetic limitations of your email account? Drop a line to ‘Type-o-Matic,” a wacky new service that types up your emails on vintage typewriters and postmarks them for a small fee. They say it’s terrific for “special correspondence,” but I think it would be kind of funny to use it for more mundane messages, like “check out this YouTube video.”
I have a thing for notebooks. But after years of notebook accumulation, no real pattern or trend has emerged. I collect them indiscriminately—a pink Moleskine here, a cool, cloth-wrapped volume there, some funky vintage find from a flea market. Sadly, most of them sit blank and dusty on a bookshelf in my office, silently pleading for a simple doodle or To-Do list. Alas, my fascination with notebooks doesn’t seem to have come with any real dedication to journaling.
But the creative minds behind new iPad app, Clibe, have come up with a space-saving digital solution for notebook nerds…
Underground skyscrapers, smart windows and more problems with natural gas drilling: Your green tech finds for the week.
Charge your car with your phone: Well, not exactly, but a new app developed by IBM and Swiss utility EKZ allows for better management of when your electric vehicle is charged and what sources of energy are used to charge it. Find out more in the video above. (via @greeneconpost)
The grain silo hotel: While not as green as it could be (because the structures used were built for the project), Silo Stay, a nine-unit New Zealand hotel built from grain silos…
Teenage Mutant Ninja Noses: Who knew that the tip of a human nose looked exactly like the head of a Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtle? Well, the author of this awesome new time-waster, Teenage Mutant Ninja Noses, certainly did. Best of all, this game isn’t limited to certain human noses…it works on all of them, meaning we can enjoy Raphael and Michaelangelo scribbled on shnozzes forever and ever. The one exception might be Michael Jackson’s nose, which turned out kind of wonky…
In a fusion of the old and new, analog and digital, Mastergram is a relatively new Tumblr that takes iconic photographs and applies filters from the popular iPhone social app, Instagram. There’s an irony in this exercise, which I find practically blasphemous, because many of the Instagram filters attempt to mimic a pre-digital quality and add a false sense of depth and artistry to often prosaic photos. I was pleased though to see on the site that my all-time favorite photographer Weegee is included. As I previously wrote here, I consider Weegee to be “the godfather of the 21st-century urban blogger.”
Ever been out on a hike, a camping trip or just a walk in the neighborhood and been faced with the question “What kind of tree is that?” More often than not, my own answer is “I don’t know.” Leafsnap, a new “electronic field guide” developed by Columbia University, the University of Maryland, and the Smithsonian Institute (which I covered very briefly a few months ago) is designed, in part, to change that answer. Using your iPhone, you can take a picture of a leaf, flower, or fruit from a tree and identify it through comparison with images in the app’s database. Think of it as facial recognition software for the nature lover.
Mini electric Hummers, solar-powered prisons, and the climate risk posed by biodegradable products… this week’s green tech finds.
- Autodesk meets sustainability: Design/engineering software suite Autodesk has now added a tool that allows users to generate environmental impact assessments of their creations.
- Biodegradable products may not be climate-friendly: Turns out that biodegradable disposable tableware and such may have a real downside — the creation of methane in landfills (most of which aren’t set up to capture the potent greenhouse gas). (via @conservationval)
Lots of solar this week… plus an app for Earth Hour, and lighter footprints for U.S. embassies.
- Water, water everywhere: It’s World Water Week, and this cool new interactive map and tool allows you to explore water supplies and consumption by country, and to see the embodied water in a wide range of products. (via @togethergreen)
- The Earth Hour app: Earth Hour 2011 is this Saturday… and this year, while the lights are off, you can check in on activities around the world with the Earth Hour iPhone app. (via The Alternative Consumer)
Raise a glass of Guinness to St. Paddy… and to a couple of Irish green tech finds this week.
Social gaming app for saving energy: JouleBug, a social gaming iPhone app for saving energy, was released this week at SXSW.
ENERGY STAR certified buildings increase by nearly 60%: That’s just one finding from this week’s release of its third annual report on the top 25 cities for ENERGY STAR certified buildings.
Lots of apps this week… for Freecycling, sharing your juice with electric vehicles drivers, and teaching the kids about rainforest ecosystems.
- Organize your Freecycling: Like to search for used treasures on service like Freecycle and Freegle? The Trash Nothing online app allows you to organize your activities at various recycling groups.
- i-Tree 4.0 is out: OK, this won’t garner the attention of the iPad 2, but the latest update of the US Forest Service’s i-Tree online tool for urban and community forest analysis features new applications for tree placement planning for individual land parcels, and “modeling the watershed-scale effects that vegetation has on local hydrology and water quality.”
Fuel cells, iPhone apps, and chicken coops… this week’s green tech finds.
The fuel cell that does… everything: Think fuel cells are just for energy? Think again… researchers at the University of Colorado, Denver, are working on a microbial fuel cell that desalinates and cleans wastewater… in addition to producing electricity. (via Cleantechnica)
Border checkpoint to feature Living Machine: The US General Services Administration has approved a Living Machine wastewater treatment system for the border crossing point at Otay Mesa, California. That’s an artist’s rendering above… (via Water and Waste Water)
‘Tis the season and all that… the holiday shopping insanity is about to begin in earnest. If you’re looking for gifts with a lighter environmental footprint, Skymall may be at the bottom of your list of vendors — it’s hard to see how a business designed for shopping on planes could be any less green. And then there are the products… how many items do you really need designed only for cooking hot dogs?
Lots of electric vehicle news this week, plus mushroom plastics and watching watersheds with your iPhone… this week’s green tech finds.
- Sun-powered transportation… in the Sunshine State: Sarasota-area beachside community Pelican Bay will be using solar-powered trams to move people around the development. (via Cleantechnica)
- GE making massive EV purchase: General Electric will not only make components for electric vehicles, but plans to become the largest single purchaser of them.
Fishy iPhone apps, soy car parts, and another solar Air Force base… this week’s green tech finds.
Sustainable seafood and wine? There’s an app for that… The Blue Ocean Institute and Brancott have launched the free Fishphone iPhone app, which not only provides sustainable seafood information on the go, but also suggest wine pairings.
The eco-travel planner: The Rainforest Alliance has beta launched its new sustainable travel guide and planner, SustainableTrip.org. Currently focused on south of the border destinations, the site features tour operators, hotels, restaurants and other amenities that have been certified by reputable NGOs.
Industrial hemp… you can’t smoke it, but, apparently, you can run your car on it. That and more at this week’s green tech finds.
- Recycle your iPod, buy an iPhone 4: Apparently, that’s what a lot of people are thinking. UK recyclables buyer MoPay has seen a 70% surge in iPod recycling since the release of the new iPhone. (via IT Pro Portal)
- The solar smart phone: Puma’s new smart phone can run on solar power, and displays how much energy a user is saving when in sun power mode. Unfortunately, it’s only available in Europe right now… (via Springwise)
Summer’s here, it’s hot, and so, naturally, we’ve got lots of solar news in this week’s green tech finds…
Fuel-efficient driving on your iPhone: Consumer Reports’ new listing of smart phone apps for drivers includes Greenmeter, an iPhone app that “…monitors your driving and displays your car’s mpg, fuel cost, and carbon emissions.”
Is that a secret for more efficient solar cells in your pants…? No, not a really bad, geeky joke: researchers at Cornell have discovered a specific molecule “in blue jeans and some ink dyes” that could be used to build frameworks for cheaper solar cells. (via Treehugger)
Jane Lynch is funnier than pretty much everyone on TV. Actually, she is far and away funnier than just about every working actor today. This is a fact in the gay world, where Ms. Lynch, a married lesbian, is becoming a camp icon. Move over Gaga, Sue Sylvester is in town. She’s perfectly terrifying on…
Israeli band Izabo incorporates multiple iPhones in their fun music video for their single “On My Way.” It can also be viewed like the next iPhone ad campaign concept. This is also the perfect segue to share an impressive video of a one-girl band using four iPhones to recreate Lady Gaga’s “Poker Face.” This YouTube…
Artist Jorge Colombo now has four New Yorker covers under his belt, which may or may not be his preferred method of carrying his iPhone, which also happens to be the tool that he uses to create and paint the art for these covers. As the iPhone and the apps have built quite a active…
Lots of solar and phone news this week in our green tech finds…
Solar for renters: Landlord won’t put up solar panels? No problem… the “solar garden” concept is catching on from Sacramento to St. George, Utah (as well as points East). (via HuffPo Green)
Green wireless systems: Feel kind of silly when your sprinkler system starts running during a rain storm? That just one wasteful scenario People Power believes its new wireless application development platform could be harnessed to address. (via Green Technology at TMCNet)
Robots, biogas, and a green 7-11… it’s green tech finds time! Solar power from pea plants: Many researchers are looking to the plant world for inspiration for harvesting solar energy more efficiently. Prof. Nathan Nelson of Tel Aviv University is looking at pea plants as a potential source of nano materials that could “…form the…