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New Lightweight Wind Turbine Can Be Hooked to Grid

I ran across this lightweight electricity-generating wind turbine at the Green Festival in San Francisco today.

Company specs:
Size:Blade/Ring Diameter: 7 feet/ Minimum clearance from roofline: 2 feet
Rated power output: 1.5kW @ 14 m/s / Annual Power Supplied: up to 2000 kWh
Electric power: 240VAC, 60Hz output voltage / can feed into grid
Noise: less than 35 decibels for all wind speeds
More info at: http://www.swiftwindturbine.com

On the Streets in San Francisco

I haven't lived in a city since age 17, but I grew up in San Francisco and love the urban rush when I come in. I find LOTS of interesting things going on. Bombarded with stimulation. Here are a few pics from this morning. (Lew and I are in the city for 3 days selling books at the Green Festival.)
Kalissa and her mom Katina dressed in American colors celebrating you-know-what. I said to her I finally feel good about being an American again.

Wire motorcycle model at a very cool cafe, MotoJava, on 9th & Bryant

Free Woodworking Plans

This is a website with free plans for a ton of woodworking projects: http://www.freewoodworkingplan.com/

Shepherd's Huts in England

These are handcrafted huts on cast iron wheels based on traditional shepherds' designs. Manufactured in Dorchester, Dorset, UK. Metal chassis, oak floors, insulated window. Interiors are 6 wide by 11’6” long, and 7’6” to the highest point of the curved ceiling. Cost: a little under £1000 including VAT. More info

Abandoned "UFO Village" in China: Wierd

"UFO Village", a futuristic community built in the small village of Sanjhih near Taiwan in the seventies but abandoned due to the bankruptcy of the developer.
Read more about it here or here.

"Waldspirale" ("Forest Spiral") Apartment House in Darmstadt by Hundertwasser

Viennese artist Friedensreich Hundertwasser has designed what has become one of the more unique and visually stimulating buildings in the world. Built betwwen 1998 and 2000, it has over 1000 unique windows, individualized handles on windows and doors, a living roof, café, parking garage, restaurant, bar, playground, and a running stream, the Waldspirale in Darmstadt, Germany is an architectural wonder. More here.

Bread, Rain, and Fire

Last night just after it got dark, Lesley pulled 3 loaves of fresh-baked bread out of the oven and the aroma filled the kitchen.

It was a cold night and a fire was blazing. Some drops of unexpected rain started to fall, we could hear them on the fiberglas skylight. I've come to cherish rain lately, partly due to mushroom hunting, but also due to recent dry years. I stepped outside and looked up, letting the rain hit my face. Why not let it hit me all over? I ran inside, ripped my clothes off, and stepped out into the storm. I turned my face up and extended arms out with palms up. Rain pouring, wind howling, total skin surface wet, yes! After a minute or so I stepped back in, grabbed a towel and stood by the fire. My circulation was racing, skin tingling, mojo working. How simple it can be: interaction with nature, tuning in to what's there at the moment, and falling in with it.

Art in Berkeley/Old House in San Francisco

These are two of the paintings on the wall of the Fertile Grounds Cafe on Shattuck Ave. in Berkeley. They are by artist Tom Clarke, in an exhibit titled Games People Play.

The artist writes:
The ball is inanimate.
The players animate the ball.

The players are inanimate.
They animate themselves.

At moments of contact they animate each other.
The ball hangs before or between them in suspended animation,
its movement both product and cause of their movements,
defining the space in which they move.


Earlier that day I discovered this intricately decorated old house half hidden by bouganvillea in an industrial neighborhood in San Francisco: