Progress update from Bob Bennett, CIO of Kansas City, on its bold smart city initiative

November 5, 2018 by  
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Bob Bennet, the chief innovation officer of the city of Kansas City, embarked on the ambitious project to “smarten” up Kansas City a few years ago, and he came to VERGE to discuss it then. He came back this year to provide a status report on the project: the city has officially launched technology aimed at engaging citizens on issues, initiatives and action.

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Progress update from Bob Bennett, CIO of Kansas City, on its bold smart city initiative

Emerging leaders and VERGE impact fellows

November 5, 2018 by  
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Emerging leaders and VERGE impact fellows

BMW confirms the i4 electric sedan will arrive by 2025

March 9, 2018 by  
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Ever since the i3 and i8 were released in 2014, we’ve been wondering what BMW’s next model would be for its electric i sub-brand. Now the automaker has confirmed it will introduce a new electric sedan — the i4 — by 2025. And it will be one of 25 new electrified vehicles they will launch by 2025. Even though 2025 is still a few years away, we’ve already seen a preview of the BMW i4, which will take inspiration from the i Vision Dynamics concept that made its debut last year. It is an aggressively styled sedan that’s about the same size as BMW’s popular 3 Series. If the i4 stays within that size range, it will be a direct rival to the Tesla Model 3. Related: BMW’s new wireless pad recharges EV batteries like a Sonicare toothbrush BMW hasn’t revealed any specs for the i4, but the i Vision Dynamics concept has a driving range of 373 miles. It can also reach 62 mph in a quick four seconds on its way to a top speed over 120 mph. Can you say power? BMW has already confirmed that a new MINI electric car and an electrified version of the X3 SUV, called the iX3 will arrive before the i4, so there’s still plenty to look forward to. + BMW All images © BMW

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BMW confirms the i4 electric sedan will arrive by 2025

Mercedes-Benz just unveiled the world’s first all-electric big rig truck

July 29, 2016 by  
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Imagine a future where big rig trucks slide quietly down the road, powered by electricity . Tesla has been working for years to make this vision happen – but this week, Mercedes-Benz beat them to the punch. The Urban eTruck is the world’s first fully electric big rig – and it’s quiet, powerful, and has an admissible total weight of around 29 tons. The Mercedes-Benz Urban eTruck can only travel up to 124 miles, so it wouldn’t be ideal for the long treks truckers often make to transport goods. Instead, Daimler designed the eTruck for city transportation. A fleet of emissions-free electric trucks could significantly reduce the air pollution many cities battle. Related: This tiny shape-shifting sideways-driving car could mark the end of parallel parking The company hopes to start producing the eTruck around the “beginning of the next decade.” By that time, they hope technology and battery advances will make the eTruck even more efficient and cost-effective. Daimler board member Dr. Wolfgang Bernhard said in a press release, “Electric drive systems previously only saw extremely limited use in trucks. Nowadays costs, performance, and charging times develop further so rapidly that now there is a trend reversal in the distribution sector: the time is ripe for the electric truck.” Daimler’s Fuso Canter E-Cell “light-duty trucks” have undergone tests for a few years now. In Portugal, successful fleet trials saw the light trucks drive just over 31,000 miles in a year. According to the company, the light trucks “reduced CO2 emissions by 37 percent compared to diesel engines.” Just about a week ago, Elon Musk revealed in a blog post that his company is also working on a Tesla Semi , which they plan to unveil in 2017. Now it’s a race to see who will start producing their electric big rig first. + Mercedes-Benz Via Engadget Images via Daimler

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Mercedes-Benz just unveiled the world’s first all-electric big rig truck

E-Waste Exposé: What Happens To Electronics After Use?

February 25, 2016 by  
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I was elated a few years ago when I discovered that my town had an electronics recycling drop off point. I was filled with smug satisfaction as I dropped off an ancient computer and a VCR I hadn’t used in almost a decade. I remember driving away…

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E-Waste Exposé: What Happens To Electronics After Use?

Download These 20+ Unique E-Waste Upcycling Ideas

February 15, 2016 by  
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In an age where technology seems to move at the speed of light, electronic devices often become e-waste in only a few years after manufacture.  Download this fact – according to the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA), the United States generated…

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Download These 20+ Unique E-Waste Upcycling Ideas

New ice-melting concrete offers electrifying alternative to road salt

January 26, 2016 by  
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Move over, road salt . There’s a new ice-melting technology up ahead, and it could prove safer for humans—and the environment—than the troublesome salt crystals used in most snowy regions. For the past several years, researchers have been working to develop a way for roads to de-ice themselves using a low-voltage electric charge built into the roadway. One such approach is gaining traction, and could become part of U.S. roads in just a few years. Read the rest of New ice-melting concrete offers electrifying alternative to road salt

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New ice-melting concrete offers electrifying alternative to road salt

Re Rag Rug turns “worthless” materials into beautiful handmade rugs

January 26, 2016 by  
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All material is good material, if you find the right use for it. Studio Brieditis & Evans challenges our notion of waste in Re Rag Rug, a design project that brings new life to materials considered worthless by the textile industry. The premise of the project is simple: one month, one technique, one rug. Over the course of 12 months, the designers created 12 unique rugs, all made without using a loom and crafted from excess fabric remnants . The 12 prototypes are currently being exhibited at Institut Suédois in Paris, France, until April 10, 2016. You can read more about their rug-making process on their blog . + Studio Brieditis & Evans The article above was submitted to us by an Inhabitat reader. Want to see your story on Inhabitat ? Send us a tip by following this link . Remember to follow our instructions carefully to boost your chances of being chosen for publishing!

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Re Rag Rug turns “worthless” materials into beautiful handmade rugs

‘Silhouettes’ are the perfect artificial plant alternative to boring plastic plants

January 26, 2016 by  
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A nice thing about the human mind is that it only needs parts of information in order to get the whole idea, we easily fill in the gaps with information from past experiences. So to evoke an image of a plant, the outline of one will do. Dutch design studio OOOMS created 3 silhouettes of ordinary houseplants, to be used at home in your windowsill or as desk divider at the office. The Silhouettes take up virtually no space and best of all, they don’t need water, making the perfect artificial plant alternative to those boring plastic plants. + OOOMS The article above was submitted to us by an Inhabitat reader. Want to see your story on Inhabitat ? Send us a tip by following this link. Remember to follow our instructions carefully to boost your chances of being chosen for publishing!

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‘Silhouettes’ are the perfect artificial plant alternative to boring plastic plants

Still Plugging Electric Cars at NAIAS 2016

January 13, 2016 by  
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Nobody is trying to save the planet with green cars anymore. The days of green cars being featured at the North American International Auto Show (NAIAS) seem to be over.  Gone are the days of rainforest themes and bamboo floors and ostentatiously placed recycling bins.  But we’ve been reporting that for the past few years . We’ve continued to note the decrease in emphasis on the importance of fuel economy, resource conservation, emissions reduction, and similar features that make a car “green.”  Green is now passe.  Or green has become mainstream.  It’s probably a bit of both. This is not to say that everything has gone back to the way it was.  Regulations for fuel economy have pushed things to where a small, chunky SUV had the kind of unheralded fuel efficiency that would’ve been one of the selling points for a small sedan a few years earlier.  So, in that sense, the entire industry has gotten greener.  But it’s gotten rolled into the ordinary business of selling cars. The one thing which is a green car element that was repeated across many manufacturers’ displays this year was the electric vehicle charging station.  Rather than being surrounded by a special display drawing attention to the “green” car, in most instances, the rechargeable vehicles were identified primarily by having that company’s power unit standing beside it (often with the unit plugged in to show the connection).  Audi, BMW, Nissan, and Porsche are among those with this kind of display.  Having a matching branded charging station in one’s own garage is one thing, but the interoperability of different chargers needs to be assured for the uptake of electric vehicles to continue to grow. Instead of everyone trying to establish their green credibility, this year the feature that most manufacturers seem to want you to covet is having the ability to connect your phone and your car.  Rather than embedding complicated systems into the vehicle itself, they are instead taking advantage of the nimbler technology of the smartphone, and making it easier to pair that with your new vehicle. The other thing that was striking to a long-time auto show attendee was the number of shifts in space between different manufacturers.  While some companies’ presence was in the same part of Cobo Hall where they have been in previous years, there were moves among several companies major companies with their displays in very different places from where they had been for the last few years.  Does being in a different place mean anything significant?  Maybe not.  But at the same time, it seems emblematic of a shift in the landscape. Tesla, which had been the brash upstart at the show a few years ago and maintained a presence for several years, was not a part of this year’s show at all.  More surprisingly, Toyota’s presence was reduced to a small counter with just two people standing behind it, although sub-brands Scion and Lexus had a presence, and they evidently had a bit more to reveal during the continuation of the show on Tuesday. Luxury brands seemed to be a bigger presence than in the past.  Both Cadillac and Lincoln displays were disconnected from the rest of their respective parent companies, and were across from one another in about the space around where Tesla had been in past years.  A “luxury lifestyle” magazine (with a handful of high-end cars in their display) had a space easily as large as some of the less mainstream exhibits from previous years, such as VIA, or BYD, or last year’s car printing 3D printer.  There seemed to be a new emphasis on exclusivity, while also an overall reduction in the size of the footprint than in previous shows.  While last year there were many technological displays on the lower level, this year it was just the US Army (also present on the lower level last year) and the automotive design program of Lawrence Technological University. But the number of companies with more than one electric or hybrid vehicle seems like this year’s notable trend.  BMW, for one example, has three different vehicles (i8, i3, and 330e), all for different market segments, with plug-in capability.  That, as much as anything, seems to be the green trend to watch for the next couple of years.

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Still Plugging Electric Cars at NAIAS 2016

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