Archive for the ‘Nic’ Category

experiment the eye

We enjoyed discovering the different internal structures of an eye ball from a pig. We cut away at it and photographed our findings. We discovered an interesting transition from when the eye ball looked like something solid and whole to after we cut into it and how it transformed into something fluid and delicate but also dark and cloudy. We believe the way we perceive our surroundings and the state of seeing is important in how we interpret what wellington will be like in 2040.


Lessa, Lou, Craig, Nic & Jisook


Wireless energy transfer

First presented by Nicola Tesla in 1893 with his experiment of the wireless illumination of Phosphorescent Lamps at The Chicago World’s Fair.
Recently re-instituted because of it potential practicality for the future.

“Tesla’s work was impressive, but it didn’t immediately lead to widespread, practical methods for wireless power transmission. Since then, researchers have developed several techniques for moving electricity over long distances without wires. Some exist only as theories or prototypes, but others are already in use.”

“Research at MIT indicates that induction can take place a little differently if the electromagnetic fields around the coils resonate at the same frequency. The theory uses a curved coil of wire as an inductor. A capacitance plate, which can hold a charge, attaches to each end of the coil. As electricity travels through this coil, the coil begins to resonate. Its resonant frequency is a product of the inductance of the coil and the capacitance of the plates.”

exerts from

MIT team experimentally demonstrates wireless power transfer, potentially useful for powering laptops, cell phones without cords

Imagine a future in which wireless power transfer is feasible: cell phones, household robots, mp3 players, laptop computers and other portable electronics capable of charging themselves without ever being plugged in, freeing us from that final, ubiquitous power wire. Some of these devices might not even need their bulky batteries to operate.

A team from MIT’s Department of Physics, Department of Electrical Engineering and Computer Science, and Institute for Soldier Nanotechnologies (ISN) has experimentally demonstrated an important step toward accomplishing this vision of the future.

Realizing their recent theoretical prediction, they were able to light a 60W light bulb from a power source seven feet (more than two meters) away; there was no physical connection between the source and the appliance. The MIT team refers to its concept as “WiTricity” (as in wireless electricity). The work will be reported in the June 7 issue of Science Express, the advance online publication of the journal Science.

– continued in link


Electricity from Plants – 2

“Scientists at Stanford University have discovered a way to tap into the natural electricity occurring in plants. Using a specially-designed gold electrode, Stanford scientists have harnessed the excited electron activity in single-cell Algae photosynthesis, resulting in low levels of electricity.

Algae has long been a favored organism for next gen energy production and research. It grows quickly and produces rich fats which can be harvested for biofuels and other non-petroleum production needs. Now, scientists at Stanford University have developed a way of harnessing naturally-occurring electricity which can be found in single cells of algae. During algae photosynthesis, the cell’s electrons become excited. Stanford can harness this energy with a specially-designed gold electrode, producing a small current of electricity. The amount of electricity produced is quite minimal, as it would take a few trillion cells to produce enough electricity to charge a AA battery. The goal of the research, however, was not to develop an energy production system based on algae, but to begin breaking down barriers to efficient plant-based electricity production.

As it stands now, science and industry can harvest the energy from the sun in similar ways that plants photosynthesize. Photovoltaic solar energy transduces the energy of the sun into an electrical current, and this system does the same thing albeit more naturally. While we may not see large tanks of algae being used to produce electricity in the near future, the research will help develop new energy solutions for a very green future.”

Here is someone else interested and taking an initiative on Instructables


Electricity from plants

Here is a cool video, of potentially providing free renewable electricity from plants by creating a Tesla coil around the stem of a plant.

We could quite possibly use this to make the plant grow itself. Please excuse the cheesy music.


How Wellington looks from the outside.


I remember what the Mayor said about how people view wellington, well as a Wellingtonian I think my view and opinion would be slightly bias, so I thought it would be important to see what the rest of the world thought of Wellington. The following are from Lonely Planet – Tourism Guide

“ ‘Welly’ prides itself in its cultural and artistic wealth. Given the relatively small population, there’s an astounding number of quality restaurants, cafés, bars, galleries, shops and theatres here. And it’s certainly better-looking than Auckland: timber Victorian houses terrace up steep valleys from the waterfront in an almost San Franciscan manner.”

“– the world is a kinder, gentler, more respectful place down here! And while the fanfare surrounding the Lord of the Rings trilogy is waning, visiting the real-life Middle-earth still has a geeky allure – LOTR director Peter Jackson’s filmmaking prowess still holds Wellington (aka ‘Wellywood’) in its thrall.”

“The national real estate boom continues to mesmerise sellers and infuriate buyers. Rising house prices have stabilized with rising interest rates, but wages have failed to keep up: Auckland, Christchurch and Wellington are among the world’s most expensive cities in terms of housing affordability (relative to income).”

* Lonely Planet

So wellington compares well, I also cruised over a few blogs by random tourists and they tend to have A LOT of pictures of wellington, usually describing it as quite photogenic. Being one of the worlds most expensive places to live is something we could look into.

Other related links: