May 16, 2015
Hello, fellow Citizens. This is Citizens of Tech show #3, recorded on
the 12th of May, 2015. Hey, we’ve gotten some good feedback on the
show, so now you can tweet @citizensoftech. That will be the best way to talk to us, because our inboxes are already kinda full. So let’s keep it on the Twitterz.
I am Ethan Banks, you can follow me @ecbanks. Joining me, wearing a mitre, and with an air of suffused dignity, Eric Sutphen ministers technology oracles to you and joins me on the microphone.
We’re looking for good book recommendations. Anything you’ve got that
you’d like to share with your fellow Citizens, let us know – tweet to
Citizens of Tech runs in 3 segments — present, past and future. We
start off with newsy tech things we thought were interesting, take a
look back and past tech we think was cool, then peer over the horizon to
technology coming soon (ish).
“While the consumption of insects has gained renewed attention
recently, it is in fact nothing new. As eclectic omnivores, it’s likely
that humans have consumed insects, the most abundant terrestrial life
form excluding bacteria, for an exceedingly long time. Today, 80% of the
world still eats over 1,600 species of insects, from Jing Leed in
Thailand to Escamoles in Mexico to Casu Marzu in Italy. Eating insects
simply makes sense.”
- Insects are exceptionally nutritious.
- Insects have marginal environmental impact.
- We need a new source of protein, one that can sustain the world into the future.
2. The Mr. Money Moustache Blog
- Think of this site as finance hacking.
- It’s not about “retirement” really. About financial independence. No
assumption that you’ll stop working unless you want to. The point is
that you could, not that you will.
- Major ideas.
- Stop spending. Save as much as possible.
- Your dollars are little soldiers that can work for you. Build a mighty army. Grow your “stash.”
- Budgets are dumb. They are freedom to spend, just up to a limit.
That’s wrong thinking. Spending of any kind should be a careful, painful
decision. Parting with your money means putting off your independence
that much longer.
- Stop commuting. Live close to your job. Bike, not ride. “Clown car”
trips. Cars are for intracity travel, not trips to the supermarket. If
you own a car, should be the least costly, most fuel efficient,
reasonable car. A car should not be a status symbol, as they are grossly
inefficient energy expenditures in general.
- Frugal doesn’t mean cheap.
- DIY. Stop paying others to do what you could if you took the time to learn. Those skills payoff in the long run.
3. Study Reveals Wikimedia Foundation Is ‘Awash In Money’
- Wikipedia Costs about $2.5 Million to run per year
- $53 Million in Investments – they keep running annual fundraisers anyway…
4. The world’s most dangerous racing simulator
5. Rapid Fire from TechCrunch
5a. Carly Fiorina for President
5b. Biobots 3D Printer
- “Instead of plastic, BioBots’ 3D printer uses a special ink that can
be combined with biomaterials and living cells to build 3D living
tissue and miniature human organs.”
- “The use-case at this point is for research and pre-clinical
screening, such as drug testing (as a replacement for animal testing).”
- “It’s not about 3D printing replacement organs from a person’s own cells.” But maybe someday.
5c. Liquidity 0.2micron filter water bottle
- “Liquidity’s core technology is a membrane with pores of .2 microns
in width, small enough to eliminate microbial contaminants that make up
the vast majority of water quality incidents.”
- “The water bottle flows at nearly the same rate as those without a
filter included. The is possible because the filter is made up of
between 80-90 percent open space, there is almost no pressure or wait
time required to move water through the membrane making the product
hugely convenient to consumers. (Traditional membranes hover around 20
percent of open space.)”
- “To create the nano-fiber thin membrane that could be produced at
scale, Liquidity had to invent their own manufacturing process.”
5d. Nikola Labs Launches
- “A case for an iPhone 6. It converts the wasted 90 percent of energy
the phone produces trying to pump out a cellphone signal, and puts it
back into the phone, thus powering it for up to 30 percent longer.”
- “This is not an extra battery; it simply works passively.
Essentially it is harvesting back the ambient RF energy already being
produced by the phone.”
- “They aim to bring the product to market within one year.”
- “Launching on Kickstarter in one month for $99, and they hope to ship it inside the following four months.”
- Nerd cred. “Appropriately, Nikola Labs launched its product in the very building Tesla himself lived and eventually died in.”
- We add “popover” ads to the list, because we hate them so so so so
so much. We WANT them to die. We’re not sure they’re going to.
- Still on the list – FM radio & Tidal.
We discuss lunchbox computers. Eric and I both had one from back in the 286 era. For example, Eric had one of these beauties. http://oldcomputermuseum.com/compaq_lunchbox.html – the model III.
1. Audi has made carbon neutral e-diesel from CO2 and Water + Electricity
- Water heated up to form steam is broken down into hydrogen and
oxygen by means of high-temperature electrolysis. 800 degrees Centigrade
(use of heat recovery keeps this *relatively* efficient [70-ish %] )
- In two further steps, the hydrogen reacts with the CO2 in synthesis
reactors, again under pressure and at high temperature. Article is
unclear as to the actual chemical composition, but standard Diesel is
between . C10H20 (Cyclodecane) to C15H28
- The reaction product is a liquid made from long‑chain hydrocarbon compounds, known as blue crude.
- The efficiency of the overall process – from renewable power to liquid hydrocarbon – is very high at around 70 percent.
- Similarly to a fossil crude oil, blue crude can be refined to yield the end product Audi e‑diesel.
- This synthetic fuel is free from sulfur and aromatic hydrocarbons, and its high cetane number means it is readily ignitable.
- As lab tests conducted at Audi have shown, it is suitable for
admixing with fossil diesel or, prospectively, for use as a fuel in its
- Generally, diesel engines operate well with a CN from 40 to 55
- This is compelling from a theoretical standpoint – carbon-neutral fossil-fuel replacement, but issues persist pros and cons:
- Potentially Carbon Neutral
- Sulfur Free
- Aromatic Free – No “diesel smell”
- High Cetane rating
- Shipping is still subject to spills and would still wreak havoc on ecology at a spill site
- Ultimately it’s still putting carbon into the air
- Production powered by Coal would still be a net negative to carbon
output. – requires 100% renewable energy to truly be carbon neutral.
2. Micro Wind Turbine – Oscillation not rotation
Just a reminder that we’re looking for good book recommendations.
Anything you’ve got that you’d like to share with your fellow Citizens,
let us know @citizensoftech.
Thanks for listening to Citizens of Tech today. Follow the show on Twitter @citizensoftech.
And please tell your friends. We’re going to keep the show in the
Packet Pushers incubator for the first 10 shows or so, then we’re
stepping out on our own. There’s 4,500 of you already listening, which
is great start! See you next week.