What the Internet Will Look Like After the Zombie Apocalypse

...icating with each other. To hook your laptop into the network you have to connect it via an Ethernet cable to one of the nodes or set up a wi-fi network at a node. The routers can even be powered by small 12 volt batteries or solar panels. To be clear, this is a wireless network that is independent of the internet (though you could route the internet over it). Such a network could be used in an emergency such as an earthquake or weather event to...

Continue reading…

Learn to Build with Adobe

...ing for college credit for your adobe construction coursework? I am teaching the following spring 2014 semester classes through Santa Fe Community College’s Adobe Construction Department: Class: ADOB 113 – Passive Solar Adobe Design Format: 8-Week Online Class Dates: January 21 to March 15, 2014 Credits: 2 Course #: 31660 Class: ADOB 111 – Adobe Construction Basics Format: 8-Week Online Class Dates: March 24 to May 17, 2014 Cr...

Continue reading…

The Energy Environment Simulator

...e demonstrates energy inputs and demands. Depending on how you turn the knobs, you can either engineer a future of never-ending power or, on the other extreme, your own personal zombie apocalypse. One of the energy sources is labeled “new technology.” This could either be solar or that UFO doughnut from the Thrive movie. The only info we have on it is that it was manufactured by Tenntronics, a defunct company that was in business from...

Continue reading…

Block Party Weekend

...led “intentional community” of folks who, basically, give a damn and are interested in improving our forlorn, polluted, and abused city. The block party featured ecologically savvy and self-reliant touches such as solar ovens to cook the vegetarian buffet and photovoltaic panels to power the amplifiers of the bands entertaining the crowds on Bimini Street. The fine folks at the Bicycle Kitchen had a repair stand to fix people’s...

Continue reading…

Stern Sprouted Wheat Vegan Cookie or Health Bar Type Things

...-Fired Oven by Richard Miscovich, where the recipe is used as an example of what you can cook in a bread oven which has almost cooled off,  because these bake at very low temps. Actually, they’d be good candidates for a solar oven. Or even dashboard cooking in the summer! There are four ingredients: sprouted wheat, raw almonds, dried fruit and a pinch of salt. There’s simply no room for sin. Sprouted Wheat Bars Makes a small batch, a...

Continue reading…

Our New Straw Bale Garden–Part I

Straw bales–ready to prepare. Pot in the center will be a solar powered fountain. We’re going to experiment with a straw bale vegetable garden in our backyard, inspired by Michael Tortorello’s article in the New York Times. The plan is to grow in the bales and harvest the resulting compost for use in permanent raised beds (that have yet to be built). We’ll keep growing in bales until we have enough compost for the beds. T...

Continue reading…

Failed Experiment: Bermuda Buttercup or Sour Grass (Oxalis pes-caprae) as Dye

...by a long sun steep. I opted for the long steep, put a bowl in the soaking pot to sink the plants beneath the water, and put the pot on the front porch. The day turned out to be cloudy and cool, so I don’t believe that solar energy aided my cause. Then, I ended up leaving the pot out all night long. In the morning some of the Oxalis had turned olive, other parts were still bright green. So I decided it was not done and put it on the stove,...

Continue reading…

Saturday Linkages: Straw Bales and Bike Hacks

Photo by Tracy Walsh/Poser Design Gardening Straw bale gardening in the New York Times: http://nyti.ms/10kt1Hf DIY How to fix a bicycle tube http://www.afrigadget.com/2013/02/22/how-to-fix-a-bicycle-tube/ … Bike headlight displays speed: http://boingboing.net/2013/03/20/bike-headlight-displays-speed.html Build-It-Solar Blog: A Inexpensive DIY Blower Door http://www.builditsolarblog.com/2013/02/a-inexpensive-diy-blower-door-that.html?spref=tw …...

Continue reading…

Our Keyhole Vegetable Bed: What Worked and What Didn’t Work

This is what our keyhole bed looked like yesterday just before I fed the remaining vegetables to our chickens and the compost pile. Ignore the large pot–that’s a future solar powered fountain that will be incorporated in a new vegetable garden we’re working on. Here’s what the keyhole bed looked like just after I installed it back in October. Note the compost repository in the center of the bed. I used straw wattle (ava...

Continue reading…

Arduino Homesteading Projects

...ntrols Homebrewing Temperatures Cooking Sous-vide cooking Kitchen Timer Security Garage door monitor Arduino Security Hacks Communications Fun with a rotary phone! Miscellaneous Led candle (would look great in my hacked solar light) And a shout out to the amazing bloggers at Holy Scrap, masters of using microcontrollers in clever low-tech ways. Follow their blog! Please leave a comment with a link if you know of other projects that should b...

Continue reading…