A team of students at Rice University have created PediPower -- a prototype device that attaches to a shoe to harvest energy generated when the heel hits the ground.
Although just a prototype, this type of technology could be a life saver, not just for those who get the sweats when their iPhone dribbles below 15%, but for those who depend on battery-powered blood or glucose monitors, and can't afford a dead battery.
Guest Post: Brendan Dimitri // @bdim14
I respect anybody that says music changed their life. Whether it’s putting the volume on high for a drive home, or getting lost in your headphones on the subway, music acts as a sort of psychological release for those who had a day.
I’ve played guitar and saxophone for as long as I care to remember, and in my opinion, the maturation process for a musician isn’t being able to play all the chords, or flash out a solo in front of a crowd; it’s being able to distinguish the relationships between the endless amount of chord progressions and the
different moods they can portray.
A song is rarely planned; sometimes the lyrics come first, sometimes the chords come first, sometimes they come together as the process moves along.
The key of D minor, in my opinion, portrays this claim the best. The darkness and despair that lies in between the notes of D minor – and I should say, its partner in crime, the key of F -- is something that has developed my sense of music in a way the 10-year-old me would have never imagined.
Here’s a little poem/whatever-the-hell on how this specific key has influenced those who came before us. Can you spot any of the songs? Do you have a favorite song written in D minor? Leave a comment and let me know.
The key of D minor is an old man, a lot like you. It’s love lost, at such a cost; a coin that won’t get tossed.
It’s joo joo eyeballs; a joker, who just do what he please.
It’s the devil who went down to Georgia, looking for a soul to steal.
It’s a Requiem that interrupts your deepest thought.
It’s a shiver in the dark, when it’s raining in the park.
It’s another brick in the wall, an intangible barrier of good, bad.
It’s a tear; no, it’s that first thought of a tear.
It’s a lowercase letter, in the Sea of Capitals.
It’s an abandoned bridge, stuck in an eroding battle.
It’s a tree; broken, left to question the Gods.
Break or rebuild me.
It’s a saxophone on the sidewalk; a penny, heads down.
A harmonica echoing in an empty room.
It’s the key of F, only faintly different.
Fuck, fame, phony, pony, money, funny, dope, mop.
It could go on forever, but chooses not to.
For your sake.
It’s the temptation of insanity, the results of which known.
Vanity, parity, discontent.
It’s cheap mascara running down your face.
It’s the key of D minor; that first thought of a tear.
Guest Post: Brendan Dimitri // @bdim14
I am inspired by the world in which graffiti represents; the underground, mysterious and cultish world that often leads most to pass on by, give a look and shake their head.I first saw the Bansky collection book, Wall and Piece, about 5 years ago and was instantly hooked. I had no appreciation of graffiti, propaganda or even art for that matter. I was raised to think that graffiti was something that roughens on the other side of town did in their spare time just to break the rules.For whatever reason, I’ve become a graffiti geek. Now that I’m a little older and have shed most of that ignorant, boyhood mentality, I now know that these artists are more than just guys and gals who stay out late, get into trouble and run from cops.They could be anybody; your neighbor, coworker, the person who takes your order at the local burger joint. It could be anybody that seeks the thrill of the moment, the rush of adrenaline that comes from doing something you know is right, even if it’s wrong.What fascinates me most about graffiti is what it portrays -- that dark, ominous way of the street.Look over your back shoulder, is anyone watching? Does anyone care? Do I care? Hurry, shake the can, spray the bottle, and fill the lines; Black hoody, dark jeans and Chuck Taylors.Get chased by dogs and pigs -- hop roofs and duck lights, climb fences and be smooth.It’s that feeling of guilty adolescence that most lose after . . . adolescence.I would think that the “exclamation point” for a street artist doesn’t come when he/she finishes up, stuffs the cans in his backpack, and walks away innocent with his head down. It comes the next day, when someone looks up and thinks, “I wonder who did that?”