Facebook Unveils Plans for Solar-Powered Internet Drones as Big as 747s

Facebook, Facebook Connectivity Lab, Yael Maguire, internet, social media, drones, unmanned planes, solar-powered drones, Facebook plans to use drones as big as 747s, Internet org, internet connection

Yael Maguire, the engineering director at Facebook‘s Connectivity Lab, has revealed further details about the social media giant’s plans to expand internet access to communities worldwide. In order to achieve global connectivity, the company has been discussing using drones, or planes as they prefer to call them, that will constantly circle in the skies. In conversation with Mashable CEO Pete Cashmore, Maguire stated the planes would be “roughly the size of a commercial aircraft, like a 747.” As astounding as that revelation is on its own, it also raises regulatory questions. Not only are there unresolved issues around launching and airspace controls, but with an anticipated need for thousands of planes, the company says it is impractical for one person to control only one plane at a time as current legislation requires.

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16-Year-Old Irish Girls Win Google Science Fair 2014 With World-Changing Crop Yield Breakthrough

google science fair winners 2014

Irish teenagers Ciara Judge, Émer Hickey and Sophie Healy-Thow, all 16, have won the Google Science Fair 2014. Their project, Combating the Global Food Crisis, aims to provide a solution to low crop yields by pairing a nitrogen-fixing bacteria that naturally occurs in the soil with cereal crops it does not normally associate with, such as barley and oats. The results were incredible: the girls found their test crops germinated in half the time and had a drymass yield up to 74 percent greater than usual.

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Are You Ready to Share the Road with Driverless Trucks?

by , 09/25/14

Mercedes-Benz, Mercedes-Benz Future Truck 2025, Future Truck 2025, autonomous truck, autonomous vehicle, self driving truck, self driving vehicle, truck safety, vehicle safety, green transportation

Self-driving vehicles are expected to arrive within the next decade, but one type of driver desperately needs the technology now. Truck drivers spend countless hours on the road transporting goods, and accidents with their giant, heavy vehicles are often ugly. Mercedes-Benz hopes to make it easier and safer for them with its Future Truck 2025, an autonomous truck that should be available within the next ten years.

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Sightglass Coffee Opens Daylight-Filled Neighborhood Cafe in San Francisco's Mission District

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ART

Visionary Rabbit Island Artists' Residency Becomes a Reality in Michigan

by , 09/25/14
filed under: Art, Eco-Inspiration

Rabbit Island, Gorski, Ranville, artists, conservation, Michigan, non-profit, residency, sustainable, kickstarter, small spaces, tiny home, small living

It has been three years since we first told you about Rob Gorski and Andrew Ranville’s goal to make Northern Michigan’s Rabbit Island a place where nature, science, and art converge. Since then, the talented creatives have been paving the way for island’s first official artist residency program next summer! Even through the island is still in its pilot period, the Rabbit Islanders are getting noticed: they’ve had multiple museum exhibitions, they’ve given TedX talks, and they just received a 501(c)3 non-profit designation!

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INFOGRAPHIC: The Business of Forestry

The Business of Forestry

When most people think of the products created from the forestry industry, it’s usually items such as wooden furniture that come to mind. After all, forests are made of trees, and trees = wood, right? Well, yes… but they also provide so much more, especially as far as non-timber materials are concerned. Various tree species are cultivated and harvested to produce everything from natural rubber to cinnamon sticks, and chances are that several items around you right now are secondary materials from the forestry industry. Edible items (nuts! maple syrup!), cosmetic ingredients (shea butter and argan oil), and medicinal components (tea tree oil, benzoin) are just a few spectacular materials that trees provide us with, so let’s take a moment to check out this infographic and think about how important sustainable forestry really is.

+ Crowesawmills

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DIALOGUE and Snøhetta Win Competition to Design Calgary's New Central Library

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VIDEO: Do Polar Bears Eat Fast Food Too?

Joshua Davis, Michael Kirby Smith, Polar bears, climate change, Western Hudson Bay, climate scientists, global warming, global warming polar bears, seals, polar bears eating geese, polar bears eggs, polar bear food A polar bear caught chomping on a goose egg. No fries with that, though.

We humans have been seeing a trend towards slow food, but it looks like polar bears may be headed in the opposite direction. Joshua Davis, Michael Kirby Smith and James Gorman recently made a fascinating video for the New York Times about how scientists in the Western Hudson Bay have observed polar bears gorging themselves on easy-to-grab goose eggs (with some bears eating 200-300 nests of eggs in a 96 hour period) instead of partaking in their traditional meal of seals. But what does this dining drift mean in terms of climate change? Read on for the full video.

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Camping Reaches New Heights with This 5-Level Campsite Skyscraper!

 

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Industrial Giant Cargill Announces Promise to Stop Leveling Rainforests

by , 09/25/14
filed under: Conservation, News

green design, eco design, sustainable design, Cargill, deforestation, UN Climate Summit, New York Declaration on Forests

Mega agricultural and industrial company Cargill has announced at the UN Climate Summit that it will begin to support the New York Declaration on Forests- and stop leveling rainforests. The company, which has widespread properties in both Brazil and Malaysia, has vowed to protect forests in all of its agricultural supply chains. This exciting news is a big step for the declaration, which aims to end forest losses by 2030.

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New Sustainable Foodie Haven Set to Transform an Abandoned Warehouse in New Jersey

by , 09/25/14
filed under: Inhabitat NYC

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ART

Ai Weiwei Creates a Massive Metal Bird Wing From Tibetan Solar Cookers and Teakettles

by , 09/25/14
filed under: Art, News, Recycled Materials

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Children Help Build and Set Ablaze a Miniature City Made From Wood Waste at Valencia’s Fallas Festival

by , 09/25/14

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Angry Skies and a Dense Forest are No Match for this Sprawling Solar Array

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Clever Earth-Sheltered House Uses Natural Surroundings to Reduce Energy Needs

by , 09/25/14
filed under: Inhabitat NYC

architecture, earth sheltered house, sustainable design, home design, sustainable residential design, Newburg, New York sustainable architecture, energy efficiency, locally-sourced wood

Sustainable homes often feature high-tech bells and whistles but John Grzibowski’s clever house relies on the power of nature to keep it green. Located in Newburgh, NY, about an hour-and-a-half from NYC, the DIY earth-sheltered home strategically uses the surrounding landscape to insulate itself. Even more impressive, the spacious 1,500-square-foot structure, built on 4.7 wooded acres, was built using locally-sourced materials.

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O'Donnell + Tuomey are Among the Youngest Winners of the RIBA Royal Gold Medal in 2015

O'Donnell + Tuomey are Among the Youngest Winners of the RIBA Royal…

Dublin-based architects Sheila O’Donnell and John Tuomey of the firm O'Donnell + Tuomey have been announced as the 2015 winners of the Royal Institute of British Architects's lifetime…

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Oregon's Largest Education Building Achieves LEED Platinum Certification

Oregon's Largest Education Building Achieves LEED Platinum…

Designed by Portland-based SERA Architects and Los Angeles-based CO Architects, the Collaborative Life Sciences Building is comprised of two volumes--a 12-story north tower and a…

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Poachers in Mozambique are Killing Thousands of Elephants on an Industrial Scale

Poachers in Mozambique are Killing Thousands of Elephants on an…

The elephant poaching crisis in Africa, fueled in part by demand for ivory in the far east, is getting worse. Environmentalists warn that elephants are being killed on an industrialized…

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Fukushima Radiation is Still Wreaking Havoc on Insects Around the Plant

Fukushima Radiation is Still Wreaking Havoc on Insects Around the…

Three years later and the world has slowly returned to normal after the Fukushima Daiichi Nuclear Power Station disaster, but the frightening consequences just keep on going.…

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INTERVIEW: Home Improvement Legend Bob Vila Talks to Us About Green Building

INTERVIEW: Home Improvement Legend Bob Vila Talks to Us About Green…

Bob Vila’s name has been synonymous with home improvement since he helped launch This Old House in 1979. After nearly thirty years of producing and hosting television shows about the…

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