Monthly Archives: December 2012

Product Test: Novothink Solar Surge for iPhone

Anyone who has a iPhone knows that battery life can be a significant issue. Novothink has come up with a solution that harnesses the power of the sun to keep your iPhone up and going, the Solar Surge for iPhone.  One key benefit of this charger over others is that this is the only one to be Apple-certified.

The Surge features a  solar panel on its back, connected to a 1500mAH lithium-ion battery. There are Indicator lights to let you know the status of the charge and the current strength of your light source, while an additional speaker is built into the bottom to compensate for the iPhone’s own speaker being covered. The case also provides a cutout for attaching wrist straps, carabiners, or other clips to charge the device while hiking, biking or other outdoor activities.If you find yourself without adequate sunlight, you can also charge the Novothink Solar Surge via USB. For our first test, we placed battery depleted iPhone into the Solar Surge without charging. We placed the Solar Charge in sunlight for an hour and a half. We then calculated that we were able to get nearly fifty-five minutes of talk time on the iPhone before the phone needed additional charge. We then charged the Solar Surge for sixteen hours to get a full charge. From a full charge, the Solar Surge provided over six and a half hours of talk time on the iPhone. As a bonus, Novothink offers a free app from the App Store that helps you plan for extended trips. The app, Novothink Solar Planner, lets you adjust for sunny or cloudy trips and app usage, and it tells you how long you’ll need to keep the Surge in the sun to keep it – and your phone – juiced up. The Novothink Solar Surge for iPhone is a recommended power solution for iPhone users with the need to keep connected on the go.

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Filed under Product Review, Solar, Technology

Top Green Resolutions for 2012

Kick-off he New Year right with a these green living tips:

A new year is starting; it is now time to reflect on the past and look to the future and set new resolutions. Some of these green tips you may already know or already integrate them into your daily daily life. If you are currently not doing any of the following, even if you only follow a few of these easy tips,  you will save money, time and energy. You will find that these eco-friendly green resolutions are surprisingly simple to implement.

  1. Replacing Appliances – When your next appliance breaks down and can not be repaired, be buy an energy efficient replacement.
  2. CFL Light Bulbs—You can save over 50% of your energy use for lighting by replacing traditional, incandescent light bulbs with a Compact Fluorescent Light Bulb (CFL).
  3. Reduce Vampire Power Loss – Never leave anything on standby. Switch off PCs and TVs when not in use. And unplug your mobile phone charger when you’re not using it. Leaving appliances on standby wastes at least 6% of domestic electricity use.  Also look into the use of smart power management products.
  4. Use Re-usable Water Bottle  –  Utilize refillable bottles for drinking water to help reduce the millions of gallons in crude oil required to produce and distribute plastic bottles, that otherwise would take thousands of years to decompose.
  5. Reduce, Reuse & Recycle -  The new year usually means out with the old and in with the new – but don’t be so hasty. Don’t let those items end up in the waste stream by recycling and reusing what you already have – one of the most eco friendly things you can do is look after what you already have or finding a new home for the item.
  6. Better Thermostat Use – In many parts of the country, the heating and cooling portion of your utility bill makes up over 50% of your utility bill. Reduce you bills by 10%-15% by adjusting the thermostat by 2 – 3 degrees. You can can also reduce your cooling costs by 30% in the summer by implementing a flash evaporation system.
  7. Buy Organic and Local – As a partial replacement to fast food and chain supermarkets, try organic and local produce from your local farmer’s market. The production of organic food causes much less environmental damage than conventional agriculture and also helps to reduce pollution by cutting down on food miles which contribute to climate change.
  8. Use Green Household Cleaning Products – Eliminate the use of cleaners that utilize Phosphates, which have known environmental negative impact.Many conventional household cleaning products contain chemicals and phosphates.
  9. Reduce Car Use and Cut Car Pollution – Over 50% of all car trips are less than 4 miles, which is an ideal distance to be covered by bicycle.
  10. Use Re-usable Grocery Bags – Plastic bags cause as much, if not more economic damage of plastic water bottles, showing up in water ways and landfills. By using a re-usable grocery bag, you can reduce the amount of plastic bags that end up in the landfill by 5 – 8 bags per trip.
  11. Re-use plastic bags— It may be hard to completely avoid ever buying or having plastic bags around, but to minimize using more you can do a few simple things. If you have pets you can keep a drawer full of these bags and take them with you when you venture out with Fido. Another use for plastic bags is using them as trash bags in the smaller waste pails like the laundry room or the bathroom.
  12. Composting – Composting is nature’s recycling program, a process by which natural materials decompose as a result of natural chemical reactions or be aided by fungi, bacteria and insects. An excellent way to reduce the amount of food waste that will end up in the landfill by using an outdoor composter. If you live in an apartment or have limited space, a indoor composting system may be a good solution.

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Filed under Healthy Living