GM’s Maven and Lyft aim to jumpstart on-demand EVs

February 27, 2017 by  
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Short-term car rentals and shared rides could increase adoption of electric vehicles — and maybe even their self-driving siblings.

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GM’s Maven and Lyft aim to jumpstart on-demand EVs

100 seeds for a sustainable future: Crowdsourcing the MBA

February 27, 2017 by  
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In week three of 10-part series, colleges are implementing programs to help students be the change they want to see in the world.

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100 seeds for a sustainable future: Crowdsourcing the MBA

Corporate clean energy deals are a bigger priority than ever

February 27, 2017 by  
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Even politically “red” states stand to benefit from maturing deal and financial structures.

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Corporate clean energy deals are a bigger priority than ever

Why ExxonMobil’s new CEO, like the old one, backs a carbon tax

February 27, 2017 by  
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Darren Woods, who took the helm in early 2017, doubles down on oil giant’s commitment to drive down emissions.

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Why ExxonMobil’s new CEO, like the old one, backs a carbon tax

Why climate change is material for the cotton industry

February 27, 2017 by  
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The cotton industry is turning to innovation to help it weather challenging growing conditions ahead.

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Why climate change is material for the cotton industry

Uber confirms rumors they are testing a self-driving car

May 19, 2016 by  
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For the past year, rumors have been swirling that Uber is getting into the game of self-driving cars . The company opened the Advanced Technologies Center in Pittsburgh, where journalists spotted a vehicle that looked suspiciously like a driverless one marked with the Uber logo. This week, the company officially announced in a press release they are testing a self-driving car on the streets of Pittsburgh . The car is a hybrid Ford Fusion, and while it has “self-driving capabilities,” a driver will be present to take over if needed. Along with testing its autonomous function, the car will collect data for maps . According to Uber, the vehicle has been equipped with “a variety of sensors including radars, laser scanners, and high resolution cameras to map details of the environment.” Related: The self-driving car didn’t start with Google, or Tesla Uber allowed Pittsburgh Tribune-Review journalist Aaron Aupperlee to take a ride. He said , “The car’s sensors detected parked cars sticking out into traffic, jaywalkers, bicyclists, and a goose crossing River Avenue.” The transportation networking giant claims they still have a long way to go, but that they’ve received support from Pittsburgh city leaders including the mayor, who expressed excitement that Uber is pursuing innovative technology in his city. Uber said the city environment in Pittsburgh is the perfect place to test out their self-driving car, since it has to face challenges such as snow, hills, and narrow roads . While many have focused on the developments coming out of leaders like Google and Tesla in the self-driving car sphere, The Verge reports many experts are actually following Uber’s progress as they stand to benefit more as a company from autonomous technology. In their press release heralding the Pittsburgh test car, Uber said self-driving vehicles could save millions of lives, claiming, “1.3 million people die every year in car accidents – 94 percent of those accidents involve human error.” Via The Verge Images via Uber and Wikimedia Commons

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Uber confirms rumors they are testing a self-driving car

Google patents sticky "fly paper" car hood to protect pedestrians in self-driving car crashes

May 19, 2016 by  
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Oh, to be a fly on the wall at Google . Imagine the amazing ping pong games and impromptu office jam sessions you would witness. Chances are you would also catch a whiff of Google’s latest innovations , some in their primordial brainstorming phase. One such idea took one step further into reality when Google was awarded a patent for a strong adhesive automobile hood, designed to catch pedestrians that have been hit by cars before they reach the ground and are potentially run over. Is Google preparing to launch some sticky self driving cars ? The adhesive hood patent was filed in 2014 and awarded to Google earlier this week, though the company has no immediate plans to bring it to life. In the patent, Google frames its idea as a potential safeguard for self-driving cars as the technology is developed. “While such systems are being developed,” reads the patent, “it must be acknowledged that, on occasion, collisions between a vehicle and a pedestrian still occur Such safety mechanisms may become unnecessary as accident-avoidance technology is being further developed, but at present it is desirable to provide vehicles with pedestrian safety mechanisms.” Related: Google’s driverless car causes an accident for the first time To avoid endlessly trapping small objects like actual insects and debris, Google’s automotive “fly paper” would be covered with an “eggshell” layer that breaks upon impact. As crazy it sounds, the idea may have some scientific merit. “Getting hit by a car once is much preferable to getting hit by a car and then the ground and then another car,” says Rebecca Thompson, head of public outreach for the American Physical Society. “Cyclists wear helmets not as much to prevent their head’s impact with the car as much as their head’s impact with the ground when they fall.” There are some drawbacks for the design, such as the potential for trapping a victim in a dangerous position on the hood. However, Thompson believes that such a design could decrease the number of hit-and-run incidents. After all, it’s hard to flee when a human fly is stuck to your vehicle. Via Gizmodo Images via Becky Stern/Flickr and Travis Wise/Flickr  

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Google patents sticky "fly paper" car hood to protect pedestrians in self-driving car crashes

Affordable self-watering planter lets you grow a countertop garden with ease

March 15, 2016 by  
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Indoor gardening is now easier than ever. Oakland-based startup Back to the Roots designed a self-watering planter that uses ancient and low-tech technology that’ll do the watering for you without the need for expensive apps or micro-sensors. The key to the self-watering planter is the miniature clay olla—a low-fired clay pot used in North Africa for thousands of years—that holds water that seeps slowly out from the porous sides. The product also comes with a 64 ounce mason jar filled with “organic moisture-balancing biochar and organic nutrient-rich soil,” two organic fertilizer spikes, and organic cherry tomato seeds. You can find the self-watering planter at Barnes & Noble store nationwide and select Home Depots; the product will also be sold online in the near future. + Back to the Roots Self Watering Planter 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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Affordable self-watering planter lets you grow a countertop garden with ease

Vibrant new community garden reforms a crime-ridden London corner

March 15, 2016 by  
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Vibrant new community garden reforms a crime-ridden London corner

MIT’s flat-pack table is so smart it can assemble itself without your help

April 10, 2015 by  
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MIT’s Self-Assembly Lab  came up with a fantastic design for a  table that can transform without any human or machine help. With the help of material manufacturer Wood-Skin , the team has manufactured a prototype of The Programmable Table which can reconfigure itself into various shapes. Unlike the essentially useless self-assembling chair they created earlier this year, this flat-pack table could impact the landscape of home furnishings in the very near future. Read the rest of MIT’s flat-pack table is so smart it can assemble itself without your help Permalink | Add to del.icio.us | digg Post tags: “green furniture” , green design , MIT self-assembly lab , self-assembled furniture , small living spaces , small spaces , smart design , transformable furniture , Wood-skin , wooden furniture

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MIT’s flat-pack table is so smart it can assemble itself without your help

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