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Solar panels replaced tarmac on a motorway — here are the results admin Fri, 2018-09-21 - 23:00

Solar panels replaced tarmac on a motorway — here are the results

Four years ago a viral campaign wooed the world with a promise of fighting climate change and jump-starting the economy by replacing tarmac on the world's roads with solar panels. The bold idea has undergone some road testing since then. The first results from preliminary studies have recently come out, and they're a bit underwhelming.

A solar panel lying under a road is at a number of disadvantages. As it's not at the optimum tilt angle, it's going to produce less power and it's going to be more prone to shading, which is a problem as shade over just 5% of the surface of a panel can reduce power generation by 50%.

The panels are also likely to be covered by dirt and dust, and would need far thicker glass than conventional panels to withstand the weight of traffic, which will further limit the light they absorb.

Unable to benefit from air circulation, its inevitable these panels will heat up more than a rooftop solar panel too. For every 1°C over optimum temperature you lose 0.5% of energy efficiency.

As a result a significant drop in performance for a solar road, compared to rooftop solar panels, has to be expected. The question is by how much and what is the economic cost?

Some interesting perspectives obtained from the various tests. Yes, right now this is probably still not the most practical way of doing it using current technology. Seems right now that rooftop solar will yield greater power generation. But I'm sure experimentation will still continue and improve.

Read more at https://phys.org/news/2018-09-solar-panels-tarmac-motorwayhere-results.html

#solarroads


Solar panels replaced tarmac on a motorway—here are the results
Four years ago a viral campaign wooed the world with a promise of fighting climate change and jump-starting the economy by replacing tarmac on the world's roads with solar panels. The bold idea has undergone some road testing since then. The first results from preliminary studies have recently come out, and they're a bit underwhelming.
Interbike Reno 2018: Here are all the cool and crazy new electric bicycles you’ll want to see ranging... admin Fri, 2018-09-21 - 22:39

Interbike Reno 2018: Here are all the cool and crazy new electric bicycles you’ll want to see ranging from $600 – $10,000

The indoor expo at the 2018 Interbike bicycle trade show in Reno, NV has kicked off. Nearly all of the world’s biggest electric bicycle brands are here showing off their newest e-bike models, parts, accessories and even some surprisingly weirder offerings.

Here’s a breakdown of all the best new offerings in the world of electric bicycles and other light electric vehicles.

Let’s start off with the brand new releases from the major electric bicycle manufacturers. And if you think this is just going to be a list of $4k+ e-bikes that most of us can’t afford, think again. The prices of the bikes here range from $600 – $10,000, so there’s a bit of everything for everyone.

See https://electrek.co/2018/09/21/interbike-reno-2018-all-the-electric-bicycles/

#ebike


Interbike Reno 2018: Here are all the cool and crazy new electric bicycles you’ll want to see
The indoor expo at the 2018 Interbike bicycle trade show in Reno, NV has kicked off. Nearly all of the world’s biggest electric bicycle brands are here showing of their newest e-bike models, …
Voice-controlled technology aids disabled residents in Cape Town admin Fri, 2018-09-21 - 19:25

Voice-controlled technology aids disabled residents in Cape Town

Seems to be based on Google Home technology (despite the system being called "Alexa") with some additional customisation. But despite that, the fact is that this basic functionality makes a massive difference for those in care facilities who do not have the physical dexterity to control everyday devices such as a TV, a fan, a light, etc. A little technology can go a long way and I hope other care facilities take note of this.

It's sad to see how many care facilities (whether for the aged, disabled, etc) are stuck in the 1980's with regards to just having TVs and books.

See https://www.iol.co.za/capetimes/news/watch-voice-controlled-technology-aids-disabled-residents-17178222


WATCH: Voice-controlled technology aids disabled residents | Cape Times
Disabled residents living at three residential facilities in Cape Town have a new level of autonomy.
13 Facts About Notre-Dame Cathedral admin Fri, 2018-09-21 - 19:07

13 Facts About Notre-Dame Cathedral

Constructed between the 12th and 14th centuries, Notre-Dame de Paris has centuries of French history built into its stone. The Gothic cathedral reflects the prominent role of Paris as an economic and spiritual center in the 12th century, and its scars from the French Revolution are reminders of its long connection with the monarchy—a connection that almost resulted in its demolition. Yet although thousands of tourists enter its doors each day to photograph its rose windows and flying buttresses, this sacred destination still has its secrets. Here are 13 lesser-known facts about Notre-Dame de Paris.

See https://mentalfloss.com/article/556629/facts-about-notre-dame-cathedral

#paris


13 Facts About Notre-Dame Cathedral
Its monsters are modern, not medieval.
Vivaldi is a great web browser for Linux (and Mac and Windows) admin Fri, 2018-09-21 - 18:41

Vivaldi is a great web browser for Linux (and Mac and Windows)

For surfing the web, most people will probably use the established web browsers, such as Chrome, Firefox or Safari. But despite these being the most popular browsers, that does not automatically mean that they are the best or most useful or most reliable or most interesting browsers for everyone. There are several alternative browsers available that are certainly worthwhile to have a look at. And Vivaldi is a great web browser for Linux that is distinctive from others and deserves an in-depth look.

Vivaldi has UI features you just won't find on other browsers. One downside is no mobile version yet.

See https://www.reallinuxuser.com/vivaldi-is-a-great-web-browser-for-linux/

#vivaldi


Vivaldi is a great web browser for Linux - Real Linux User
Vivaldi is a great web browser for Linux that is distinctive from others and deserves a in depth look. Read all about it and give it a try.
World of Tanks (WOT) Blitz is a free-to-play massively multiplayer online game that involves strategy... admin Thu, 2018-09-20 - 20:43

World of Tanks (WOT) Blitz is a free-to-play massively multiplayer online game that involves strategy and experience

Whilst I normally focus more on real simulation games I always thought of WOT as an arcade style game (from what I saw in short clips in videos) but having a deeper look today made me realise this is far from the case. There is a lot of choices that go into the type of tank, country of choice, strategy in battle, choice of upgrades, training of crew, and the ballistic mechanics that add to the realism.

Back in December 2013, the game had 75 million registered players worldwide and a 1.1 million peak concurrent players so it has a major following. It debuted as an eSports game at the World Cyber Games 2012 and is playable across multiple platforms.

World of Tanks Blitz is free and playable on Windows, Mac, iOS, and Android. There is also a version of WOT for XBox and PS4. One tip is before you create an account have a look for online invite codes that will give ytou some extras to startout wiith.

The video below just touches on the choice of nation, type of tanks, and their characteristics - see https://youtu.be/QFon-E7-R1E. Another valuable starters guide is a video at https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=sS6E5H_yhXc.

#WOT #worldoftanks


Spotify will now let artists directly upload their music to the platform as a free service admin Thu, 2018-09-20 - 16:06

Spotify will now let artists directly upload their music to the platform as a free service

Spotify has announced a new beta feature that will allow independent artists to upload their music directly to the platform instead of through a label or digital aggregator. Normally, artists who aren’t signed to a major label (which can directly upload music to Spotify) have to pay a fee to a third-party service like Tunecore to upload their music to Spotify. The upload feature will be contained within the service’s existing Spotify for Artists platform, which, among other things, allows artists to view data about their listeners and directly submit their songs for editorial playlist consideration.

The new upload feature won’t work like SoundCloud, where songs will be instantly available. Instead, Spotify views it as a way for artists to have control over their own music in advance of its release date. Those who are part of the program will be shown an interface where they can upload their music and accompanying artwork, pick a release day, input additional information (like if it’s a single or an album), and then preview how it will look once published. Direct upload is being offered as a free service.

See https://www.theverge.com/2018/9/20/17879840/spotify-artist-direct-upload-independent-music

#spotify


Spotify will now let artists directly upload their music to the platform
The beta program is still invite-only
Air pollution possibly linked to dementia, London study suggests admin Thu, 2018-09-20 - 15:18

Air pollution possibly linked to dementia, London study suggests

A study shows a link between the condition and exposure to nitrogen dioxide (NO2) and toxic air particles.

Patients living within the M25 in areas with the highest NO2 levels were 40% more likely to develop dementia than those in areas with lowest levels, researchers said.

Alzheimer's Research UK said the results should be treated with caution (a trend is shown but is not necessarily the cause).

The study, published in journal BMJ Open, used anonymous patient health records from the Clinical Practice Research Datalink to collect data from 75 general practices within the M25.

The researchers, from the University of London, Imperial College and King's College London, said further work was "urgently" needed to confirm its findings.

Their work focused on 131,000 patients, aged between 50 and 79 in 2004, who had not been diagnosed with dementia. The health of each patient was tracked for an average of seven years until they were diagnosed, died or left their GP practice.

Those living in areas with the top fifth of nitrogen dioxide levels had a 40% increased risk of being diagnosed with dementia compared with those living in areas with the lowest fifth. A similar rise was seen in areas where the air had higher levels of the toxic air particles PM2.5, the study added.

"The cause of these neurodegenerative diseases is still largely unknown... while toxicants from air pollution have several plausible pathways to reach the brain, how and when they may influence neurodegeneration remains speculative." Alzheimer's Research UK has supported the idea of further research.

See https://www.bbc.com/news/uk-england-london-45572821

#pollution #no2


Air pollution 'linked to dementia'
A study finds a link between the neurodegenerative condition and exposure to nitrogen dioxide.
Train Sim World's new Ruhr Sieg Nord route in Germany (video) admin Thu, 2018-09-20 - 03:13

Train Sim World's new Ruhr Sieg Nord route in Germany (video)

Various beta versions of the video are now appearing but this is the DevStream video from Dovetail Games themselves that runs for a full two and three-quarters of an hour.

Watch it at https://youtu.be/gtxGvPBO8as

#trainsimworld


Yogurts deceptively high in sugar, UK study finds admin Wed, 2018-09-19 - 22:55

Yogurts deceptively high in sugar, UK study finds

Most yogurts have deceptively high levels of sugar, with organic yogurts among the worst offenders, a new study warned. Researchers analyzed more than 900 yogurt brands found in UK supermarkets and found that only 9% can be classed as low in sugar -- containing less than five grams of sugar per 100 grams -- while just 2% of children's yogurts are low in sugar.

The study also warned of the "health halo" effect that leads consumers to automatically assume that organic products are healthier, despite this category of yogurt being the most sugary. Organic yogurts contained an average of 13.1 grams of sugar per 100 grams, which is roughly equivalent to three sugar cubes, while children's yogurts averaged 10.8 grams. Greek and natural yogurts were the least sugary varieties, with an average of five grams per 100 grams.

My own observation, when I started out on LCHF, was that the low-fat yogurts were the worst culprits as they seemed to be adding sugar to compensate for the flavour lost when the fat is removed.

See https://edition.cnn.com/2018/09/19/health/yogurt-high-sugar-intl/index.html

#LCHF #yogurt


Supermarket yogurts high in sugar, study finds - CNN
Most yogurts have deceptively high levels of sugar, with organic yogurts among the worst offenders, a new study warned.
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