Little Big Details is a slightly esoteric website but one I think would be very interesting and useful for my designer friends and really anyone who lives and breathes in the digital space. It posts user submitted examples of how the tiniest detail in a website, software or user flow can have a disproportionately huge impact on the user experience. A lot of the submissions are from the Apple ecosystem and can be traced back to Steve Jobs, whose obsession over the smallest details resulted in a superior overall user experience…
Forget green energy and an iron man suit for the military — the most important invention of 2010 is software that detects sarcasm. (Just checking to see if the software is up and running yet.) According to Time magazine, the Semi-Supervised Algorithm for Sarcasm Identification — developed at the Hebrew University of Jerusalem — can pick up on sarcastic sentences in product reviews. The researchers tested it out with 66,000 Amazon reviews and it was right 77% of the time. Which means that — cue the singing angels — the smiley-face and winky emoticons may soon become a thing of the past, at least for people who only resort to them as a desperate means of ensuring their sarcasm is conveyed.
A zero-emissions race around the world, whiskey biofuel, and more… your green tech finds for the week.
Energy efficient motors mean green jobs in Arkansas: Electrocraft, Inc. has announced it will start producing energy efficient electric motors for heating and air conditioning units in its Searcy, Arkansas plant. This means 55 new green jobs for the small town.
Cell phone tech meets data centers: Data centers (aka server farms) suck up a lot of energy. Start-up Smooth-Stone thinks it can cut that power use by applying “low-power cell phone technology to servers…” A number of VCs think they can do it, and have provided $48 million in funding.
Can fish ‘n’ chips help with London’s drought? How much power can you get from a potato? These questions and more answered in this week’s green tech finds.
Keeping your gadgets charged in the great outdoors: Heather Clancy at GreenTech Pastures provides a run-down of her favorite solar-powered chargers.
Cheaper, greener biofuel: That’s the ultimate goal of Professor Scott Banta’s new project to genetically engineer a bacteria that will turn CO2 and ammonia from wastewater into butanol. (via Cleantechnica)
As Robert Redford notes in the video above, the environmental footprint of major league baseball (or any professional sport) is “formidable”: from the energy to run the stadium, to the gas consumed by fans traveling to a game, to water used in bathrooms and to keep field grass green, many resources go into the production of America’s national pastime. Yesterday, the partnership between MLB and the NRDC announced a significant initiative to assess and address that footprint: “…a comprehensive software system to collect and analyze stadium operations data to develop and distribute best practice information across the 30 Clubs” that will go into use this season.