Just Another Blog :)

14 July 2012

Firefox for Android


Home-built "Bio Computer" runs Linux, grows wheatgrass

 "I'm not complaining by any means, but I do feel as my basement becomes populated with more and more tech based projects that the environment is missing something organic, something natural to balance things out," writes Schropp, on his website, Total Geekdom. But where you or I might buy in a cactus or two, an amaryllis or perhaps even go bonsai, Schropp opted to merge the organic with the inorganic, putting the waste heat from a PC to use with an integrated flowerbed.

Well, not strictly a flowerbed. After a bit of research, Schropp decided that wheatgrass was the ideal species to grow from a PC, being drawn to its simple clean look and attractive hue. He patched together a working PC from various donated machines, selecting a 3-GHz Pentium 4 processor, which is notorious for running hot.

Schropp then went about refitting the case, a process which involved fitting clear acrylic panels so the soil in the wheatgrass bed and the interior workings of the machine could be seen. To get extra heat into the soil, a series of acrylic tubes protruding down inside the machine were introduced, which in turn proved the ideal place for a substrate to allow drainage of the soil. These were put in place and made watertight using a needle dropper, acrylic cement and a thin layer of silicone.

When completed, Schropp used a variable-speed fan and Prime95 to ensure the CPU ran flat out in order to carry out tests growing wheatgrass. "When the soil temperature was too high, the growth of the wheatgrass would slow," he writes, finding the optimum temperature for peak growth to be approximately 66 degrees F (19 degrees C).

It's an impressive and thought-provoking project, not least because of the just-plain-weird sight of a computer with grass growing out of it says something about all the screens, hard edges and wires with which we increasingly surround ourselves (perhaps less so, the wires). It also makes a definite if somewhat ambiguous statement about waste hear and personal electronics. But this is no project for the novice case modder. Plants require water, and water and electrical devices are not the most amicable of bedfellows.

Source: Total Geekdom,


Logitech Wireless Solar Keyboard K750

The Logitech Wireless Solar Keyboard K750 is the company's first keyboard powered wholly by light. In addition to sunlight, the device's integrated solar panel will also be able to draw power from ambient, indoor light. Should you decide to stow the 0.3-inch thick keyboard away between periods of use, the company reckons that the K750 should retain its charge for at least three months, even in total darkness.

The chiclet-type keys benefit from Logitech's Incurve design, which is said to provide a little extra keying comfort by supporting "the shape of your fingertips, while helping guide your fingers to the right key."

The company has also developed a solar power app that includes a lux meter to help position the keyboard in the best sunbathing position, and gives useful information about the keyboard's battery levels. It'll even send out an alert when power gets low, although there is also an indicator light on the keyboard itself to help avoid running out of juice mid-sentence. The app will be available from November 15.

You'll be able to get your hands on the Logitech Wireless Solar Keyboard K750 shortly for a suggested retail price of US$79.99.


Bondidea's Solar Optical Mouse

Bondidea's N91 wireless optical mouse gets round any potential power fail anxiety by running from either battery or the built-in PV panel. On the face of it, putting a photovoltaic panel on top of a computer mouse might seem like a bit of a strange idea, given that your hand will probably block out all light when in use. For much of the time, though, a mouse will likely just be sitting idly next to a keyboard or laptop, waiting for someone to handle it. So, it might as well soak up some power-giving light while it's there.

The N91 from Bondidea sports just such a top-mounted panel, which juices up a built-in rechargeable battery. There's also a battery compartment for an AAA-sized alkaline battery underneath and, although the mouse can run on solar power only, it is recommended that users install the second battery to ensure continuous operation. The battery compartment can also house a gold-plated USB nano receiver while on the move, with the peripheral using 2.4GHz anti-interference wireless technology.

In addition to left and right click buttons and scroll wheel, the N91 also has a DPI button on top. This alternates the AVAGO high speed laser optics between 1000 DPI for standard use and 1600 DPI for precision positioning.

The N91 has recently been added to Brando's online catalog (link below). At US$36, it's not the cheapest mouse on the market but it's not going to break the bank either, and it will certainly complement your solar keyboard and, ahem, green computer system.

Source: Bondidea
Available from: Brando


Google Chrome

Get a fast, free web browser


Made to make the Web a better place.

Internet Explorer 8

Internet Explorer 8
The world's most popular browser

Save The Crabs Then Eat 'Em





Buy and sell Text Links


Firefox Plugins Checker

We can check your plugins and stuff